Five Things I Wish I’d Known Before I Smoked Pot

The first time I got high was a disaster. Here’s what happened.

My friend’s older brother dealt pot and I made a purchase. It was purple. ‘Hang on, Crispian,’ I said to the kid named Crispian whose brother dealt pot, ‘shouldn’t this be green?’ Crispian assured me that purple was actually better than green, and I said, ‘Huh. Okay.’ Next, I borrowed a bong from a friend. It was three-feet tall and made from bamboo and a coconut. I then went to Matthew Carrington’s house where he, his older brother, Jeff, and Jeff’s best friend, Deano, were waiting. Did I get the stuff? Yes. Excellent. I went first. The bowl was the size of a teacup and I filled it to the top and smoked it in three enthusiastic, cough-inducing pulls. Then Jeff had a go. Then Matthew, Deano, then me again. I felt the effects of the first bong while exhaling the second. Then I went mad. I’d had too much. It wasn’t fun, it wasn’t interesting, and I did not like it. I threw up and had to be walked home. Here’s what I wish I’d known.

Know What You’re Getting.

Regardless of the strain (OG Kush, Hulkberry, Alaskan Thunder-Fuck, Muppet Tits), ask the dude if he or she is selling you Indica or Sativa. For your first go, I reckon you want a Sativa. An Indica strain will render you immobile. Sativa, on the other hand, will elevate you. You’ll be chatty, you’ll discover that there’s humour hidden in everything (oranges, birds, policemen, etc), and you’ll probably need to write down a few cool ideas (ideas with a 50% chance of still making sense when you sober up). Indica will make you heavy and sleepy, which is great if you’re smoking before bed or settling in to watch a movie, but I recommend starting out with Sativa. A good way to remember which is which: Indica = In-Da-Couch, Sativa = Sunny. Wait, but what about hybrids? Shut up, Willy Nelson.

Don’t Have Too Much

The difference between a good time and a bad time with weed comes down to how much you ingest. All that buy the ticket—take the ride shit is for people who’ve bought the ticket countless times before. Imagine if you could drink an entire night out’s worth of alcohol in one gulp and be instantly legless. Would you do it? Of course not. That’d be awful. But that’s what you’re doing when you knock back a massive bowl or take a huge hit on a joint. So, just have a little bit and see what happens. It’ll be way more fun.

The Delay

There’s a delay between inhaling the smoke and feeling high, and the length of this delay differs for everyone. It can be kinda long for some people (like me going back for seconds and then barfing on the Carrington’s rug), so just give it a while before you go hoovering up more and (temporarily) capsizing your brain.


I know it’s not ayahuasca, but smoking pot in the wrong environment with the wrong people has the potential to suck leprechaun balls. I recommend being with a friend or friends you love hanging out with and being in a place where you feel comfortable and safe. The second time I got high I was worried I’d freak out again, but I had the best time of my life. I was on an empty beach with five of my best mates and we skinny-dipped. It was hilarious and beautiful, if you’ll allow me to use that adjective in a story about being naked with my mates. So, I recommend being in nature if you can. At the very least, be somewhere chill and safe, and be with people you love being with.

Never Forget You Are on Drugs

This is the best piece of recreational drug advice you will ever receive: Never forget you’re on drugs. Having weird thoughts? That’s not you—it’s the drugs. Feeling paranoid? That’s the drugs. Making a sandwich with mayonnaise and skittles? Again, drugs. Don’t believe everything your brain serves up to you. It can’t be relied on anymore because you have temporarily made it silly. It’ll return to normal in a little while. This rule works for almost all drugs. Never forget you’re on drugs. Damn good advice.

So, that’s my top five tips for when you’re getting hight for the first time. Bonus tip: avoid edibles until you’re familiar with what happens when you smoke pot, unless you like the idea of your teeth whispering to each other while you try to peel yourself off the ceiling.

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