Change in at­ti­tude for one, dream ca­reer for an­other

Calgary Herald - - CITY+REGION - BILL KAUF­MANN BKauf­[email protected]­media.com Twit­ter: @Bil­lKauf­man­njrn

Sgt. Mar­shall Wid­ney said he’s made his share of cannabis-re­lated busts in an eight-year ca­reer.

So it was a novel sen­sa­tion to stand by as hun­dreds of pot users filed through a store­front to legally pur­chase a drug that was pro­hib­ited a mere 10 hours ear­lier.

“It’s a gi­ant mind shift,” said Wid­ney, as he watched throngs of buy­ers line up out­side Four20 Pre­mium Mar­ket at South­land Cross­ing in a cir­cus-like at­mos­phere.

But on the other hand, it’s merely an evo­lu­tion in the use of a sub­stance that’s been widely con­sumed for decades, he said.

“It’s slightly strange but to­day is just an­other day,” said Wid­ney.

“I don’t think it’ll be a dras­tic change. Peo­ple who use will con­tinue to use and the big­gest part is peo­ple get­ting ed­u­cated about it.”

Al­co­hol and its con­tri­bu­tion to ag­gres­sive be­hav­iour, he said, has al­ways posed more of a chal­lenge for po­lice.

“Al­co­hol causes more is­sues, in my work ex­pe­ri­ence, than cannabis,” said Wid­ney.

A few me­tres away, Four20 as­sis­tant man­ager Grant Dy­ment was soak­ing in a wa­ter­shed mo­ment, one he was con­vinced would some­day come.

“I’m ec­static, but I don’t think there’s an ad­jec­tive to de­scribe it,” said Dy­ment, 35.

“I’ve been study­ing the his­tory of cannabis since my teen years, I didn’t think this would hap­pen this quickly.”

The sight of hun­dreds queu­ing up to buy weed or its de­riv­a­tives “re­ally does touch your heart,” he said.

His de­ceased fa­ther, he said, would be highly amused by his new job.

“My mom is com­ing around, she’ll have no choice,” said Dy­ment.

While call­ing his job “amaz­ing,” he said it doesn’t come with an em­ployee dis­count.

“The AGLC (Al­berta Liquor, Gam­ing and Cannabis) has stated there can’t be one,” said Dy­ment.

I’ve been study­ing the his­tory of cannabis since my teen years, I didn’t think this would hap­pen this quickly.

DAR­REN MAKOWICHUK

Cus­tomer Ryker Rum­sey places his or­der.

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