I moved to Denver from Florida almost four years ago – before adult-use cannabis was legalized. It’s interesting to reflect back on the questions I was asked by my out of state friends and family before and after that fateful day in 2014. They went from something like, “How many days did you get on the mountain this ski season” to, “Is it true there is a green cloud over Denver on 4/20?”
I get it. I come from a state where people can get more jail time for weed than for shooting someone (but we won’t get into that now). Needless to say, I understand people wanting to ask questions when they see I haven’t completely morphed into an alien from planet Bong-o.
Now that I’ve had a couple years under my belt of being asked, “Oh, you’re from Colorado?” followed by a wink and a smirk, I deem these the five most common questions asked by out-of-staters about Colorado and cannabis:
#1: “Are people just, like, walking down the street smoking a bong?”
No. It’s actually really difficult for a visitor in Colorado to find somewhere to smoke. Amendment 64 does not permit the consumption of marijuana openly and publicly, so you will get a ticket for doing so. It’s similar to open container laws for drinking in public. Would you walk down the street drinking a bottle of wine?
#2: “Can you mail some to me?” and/or “Can I bring it with me?”
No. And don’t even suggest that it will be okay if you just “put the edibles in tootsie roll wrappers because they look the same.” Right – the DEA would never think of that.
#3: “So you’re a stoner, right?”
If you think everyone in Colorado is a stoner, then you must think everyone in Idaho is a potato farmer and every day in Louisiana is Mardis Gras. Believe it or not, there is a lot more to Colorado than cannabis.
#4: “What do you mean I can’t smoke weed on our hike?”
Possession of marijuana on federal land is punishable by up to a year in jail and a fine of $1,000. Also, a good thing to keep in mind in the winter – this applies to a lot of ski areas as well.
#5: “You must have a zillion pot plants in your back yard, right? You could make so much money!”
Well, I’ve never had a green thumb, but adult residents can grow up to six plants per person in an enclosed, locked space. No more than 12 plants are allowed per residence, though, no matter how many adults live there … so no, the frat houses at CU Boulder can’t have their own grow operation in the basement. And, it’s illegal to sell homegrown marijuana to others, so no get rich quick schemes here.
Fellow Coloradans, what’s the craziest thing a visitor has asked you about living in Colorado since adult-use cannabis was legalized?