April 20: 420

High TimesSo, as some of you are undoubtedly aware, today is perhaps the highest of holy days, I speak of course of the cannabis culture holiday 420.

420’s origins have been much debated, but the generally agreed upon story begins with a group of teenagers in San Rafael, California back in 1971. The story goes that a group of San Rafael High School students who called themselves the Waldos heard about a rumor about an abandoned cannabis crop and decided to go hunting for the stoner equivalent of El Dorado. Before their initial search, the Waldos agreed to meet at the statue of Louis Pasteur on the  San Rafael High School campus a 4:20 in the afternoon. From that point on, any attempt to locate the fabled cannabis crop gained the shorthand “4:20 Louis”.

Unfortunately, the Waldos never found the cannabis mother lode, but they soon adapted the code word “4:20” to reference anytime they wanted to get together and smoke pot. Allegedly, the Grateful Dead knew either a parent or sibling of one or more of the Waldo and they, along with the magazine High Times,  helped spread knowledge of the 420 code.

Nowadays 420 is celebrated with celebrations both public and private. San Francisco’s Golden Gate Park and the campuses of the University of Colorado in Boulder and UC Santa Cruz are amongst some of the better known gathering spot for informal smoke outs. This year, celebrations are expected to be especially joyous in Colorado now that recreational marijuana use has been legalized.

So, let’s extend an olive branch, nay a marijuana leaf, to our pot smoking brothers and sisters today in the form of a drink. Now you could sip on one of Mt. Shasta Brewing Company’s Weed Ales, which contain no pot but have the delightful phrase “Try Legal Weed” written on their bottle caps, or if you’re in Washington you could drink Red Hook’s hemp brewed beer Joint Effort. However this is a cocktail blog, so we’re going to mix a Liquid Marijuana Shot. This green shooter obviously includes no weed, but it does have a calming effect similar to that of a good strain of weed.

Liquid Marijuana Shot

  • 1/4 ounces Blue Curacao
  • 1/4 ounce Midori
  • 1/4 ounce Coconut Rum
  • 1/4 ounce Spiced Rum
  • 1 splash pineapple juice
  • 1 splash sweet and sour mix

Shake all ingredients with ice and strain into a shot glass.

Tomorrow: We go hunting for Nessie.

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