Good morning Santa Barbara! Where everyone is waking up to the news that S.B. County is the Marijuana Capital of the great U.S.A.! Hey, we’re growing more dope than Humboldt! We’re #1! How cool is that?
By now, who doesn’t know that pot — marijuana, cannabis, ganja, weed, grass, reefer — whatever you want to call it, is really, really, really good … well, for everything!
Who doesn’t know that marijuana makes your aches and pains melt away, puts a spring in your step, and rockets you into bottomless REM baby-sleep?
You know, of course, that pot cures cancer. No more friggin’ doctors, surgery, and forget chemo. Weed is so good for you that the California Legislature gave the A-Okay for medical marijuana in schools — beginning in kindergarten! Get the tots on pot — and away we go!
Okie-dokie, I hear you: You still think weed is a drug and maybe we should be keeping drugs out of schools?
No offense, dude, but that’s a rather quaint idea. Need I say “unwoke?”
Okay, I get it that Santa Barbara now has the country’s biggest pot farms; and, okay, I get it that the weed plantations in Carpinteria have the high school in a bear hug of a squeeze … and, okay, you got classrooms, even the football fields, reeking of reefer.
Then again, you got to hand it to that Carp school superintendent, Diana Rigby, and those principals, all dolled up in those cute uniforms with little hats and badges kicking back in a sea of home-grown Carp cannabis! And then walking off with almost $200 grand of weed money to hire a drug/mental health counselor. How awesome is that?
Hell, you can count on good service when the family of one of the school principals is in the pot business. They grow the weed, sell you the drugs — and if you go batshit — they’ll fix you right up.
Hey, that’s what Pablo Escobar did in Medellin — building schools, clinics, and all that goody-two-shoes stuff — and they’re still singing folk songs about him!
So puh-leeze Carpinteria, Santa Ynez, Tepusquet, stop whining about the friggin’ weed! It’s like the French Revolution in those ‘hoods with pitch-fork citizen mobs of tiki torch-bearing teachers, vintners, and avo growers!
How about chill out and be grateful that our supervisors made us #1 in Ganja Weed in the state, the U.S.A., and the Universe! Look, cannabis is where the bucks are! (Or were? Or maybe might still be? Okay, so the price of weed is cratering and the Golden State is now thinking there’s more moolah in magic mushrooms. Okay, I say, bring it on!) But take it from an old pot head, that’s a temporary blip. Remember HerbaLife? That s*** is still selling.
Okay, I’ll give you one: Okay, check, we know that marijuana is a thirsty plant — 22 liters of water per day, per plant. Okay, that is a hitch, I’ll give you that, for a county in drought that tends to run out of water. That is, until you start thinking with a bong in your hands.
Like I said, Bingo! Just re-route all that water from those boring avos and vino — and we are cooking with gas.
So free advice: stop carrying on about the weed fumes around your Padaro Lane beach house and bemoaning the end of avocado ranching (hell, you can buy ‘em at Smart & Final for two bucks). And get over the $2 billion wine industry nattering on about moving north. Yeah, bummer. But you can blame that on the wussies who can’t cope with a sniffer full of skunk weed while sipping the grape.
And puh-leeze folks stop bitching about those white polyurethane hoops from Santa Ynez to the county line. Maybe you’re all just stuck on “the old bucolic” that hills and mountains should be green? I say, think Christo! The cannabis industry has plastered every inch they could in stunning ivory-tinted 22-foot-tall plastic hoops and didn’t charge taxpayers a dime!
Now I get it that there’s a little glitch with slipping home values, a lot of wheezing and sneezing in the ‘hood, and the black market is booming.
Okay, we all know the windfall from weed for Santa Barbara missed its mark.
Okay, by a long shot!
I get it. That’s a problem.
So how about we all just chill a bit. Have a few hits of some homegrown reefer. And seeing we’re sliding down this butter slope, start thinking out-of-the-box … thinking, like, say … POPPIES!
Fields of majestic red, purple, and golden poppies.
Yup, folks — poppies! Opium poppies! Think about it: awesome flowers, fields of gold, no smell, and a tsunami wave of friggin’ money.
Dude, ask yourself, why settle for a mere gateway drug? Why not Go BOLD? Go BIG! Go POPPY!
Turn on. Tune in. Sell out.
And a groovy Happy Holiday to all!
A. L. Bardach, author and journalist, lives in unincorporated Santa Barbara County.