Been around the Seattle marijuana scene for a long time as a casual consumer because marijuana is awesome. When the opportunity for relatively healthy people to get a doctor’s authorization for medical marijuana came up in 2008, I jumped at the chance to get in on the action.

Glad that the recreational era is here now, because back then not all medical marijuana dispensaries in Seattle were actually tax-paying, legitimate businesses. There were some good ones out there, but the majority of them were get rich quick schemes run by greedy lunatics.

You name the pot cliche, and it could be found in the Seattle medical marijuana scene: poor hygiene, Bob Marley posters, pump and dump funky tasting white widow, bait and switch, wrongly labelled product, hippie bikers, limos from Cali pulling directly in to dispensaries to sell no questions asked cartel product out of suitcases, overly kiefed bud, amateurish marketing featuring sexy pot nurses. Free gram of lawn clippings for all new patients … that sort of shit.

Got a chance to experience all that tacky, lowbrow, low barrier to entry shit med pot culture, and for that I am grateful. An unimportant part of modern Seattle history, for sure. I was THERE, man! So DUDES — and by the term of endearment DUDES I mean men and women of all sexes and persuasions and ethnicities, granted that they are over the age of 21 — here are my eight dumbest med pot experiences. Back from before we passed 502 and just made it legal for everyone.

1. Chose a strain and the guy goes to a back room where I can’t see him and returns with a bag of something different, and lame. While he is doing that, another dude is rolling a blunt and watching a gangster movie. Then the owner brings her kids in. She’s very friendly, but the level of cluelessness bothers me.

2. Being advised by a dispensary dude that “the best way to take weed on an airplane is to open a toothpaste tube from the back and put the pot in there, wrapped in a condom.”

3. Incense. If there is anything that ruins good bud more than having it grubbed at with skin-oil-coated bacteria-covered cologne-scented bare fingers, it would be incense burning within the vicinity of the product. We’re back in a dorm room in 1977, listening to Black Sabbath? Fuck!

4. Two guys who looked like grizzled ex-cons in a bare room with nothing but a card table, a cheap portable safe, and one giant jar of shitty looking pot. I walked out, fast.

5. At a cannabis farmer’s market – a carny, wild west free for all Fed-trap atmosphere. I was hustled with come-ons from dozens of different vendors who wanted to sell me dope. Everybody was offering free bong and pipe and vape hits. Unsafe, DUDES!

6. The dispensary owner who, for a while, wore white scrubs, like a doctor. He was not a doctor.

7. Speaking of Doctors, Doctor Gil was a piece of work. He’s not operating in our state now, but he was a pioneering med pot person back in the day. Dr. Gil was recently on Fox news, commenting on the Ebola pandemic and possible conspiracies surrounding said pandemic. I talked with him once on the phone and took him seriously for a brief period of about three seconds and I’m embarrassed by that.

8. Waiting in line at the Seattle Cannabis Co-op with a bunch of kids from the high school down the street. Hell, I’ll try anything once, but THAT was embarrassing. The place is now a vacant derelict building and the wild and crazy owner is in Federal prison, but we’ll save that story for another time.