How to han­dle the high hol­i­daze

With cannabis join­ing booze, food and shop­ping as le­gal tools to fight hol­i­day stress, here are four tips to keep your dos­ing from blow­ing up like a credit card.



to the first big hol­i­day sea­son of Canada’s post-Pro­hi­bi­tion era. OK, maybe after Hal­loween, but that usu­ally doesn’t in­volve break­ing bread with prob­lem­atic rel­a­tives or all the pres­sure that De­cem­ber jin­gle-jan­gles in our faces. Cannabis is now a per­fectly le­gal ad­di­tion to par­ties, and an ex­cel­lent tool to com­bat sea­sonal stress. But that doesn’t mean you should over-shroud in skunk to stay sane! Here are some tips to han­dle your high dur­ing the hol­i­days.

1 Choose CBD-rich strains It’s well-known that dos­ing CBD can re­duce THC’s po­ten­tial to cause a “too high” para­noid feel­ing. Fur­ther­more, the Na­tional Cen­ter for Biotech­nol­ogy In­for­ma­tion has found CBD can also en­hance the pain-killing ef­fects of THC. The indica strain Moon from

Up Cannabis is an earthy mel­low op­tion, rich in in­flam­ma­tion-fight­ing ter­penes like cymene and eu­ca­lyp­tol ($11.99 for one-gram pack at the NSLC, in­clud­ing Trudeau tok­ing tax).

At a 2:1 THC/CBD ra­tio, Moon is a low­po­tency strain that emits mild eu­pho­ria and sooth­ing phys­i­cal­ity with­out caus­ing to­tal stoner lock­down.

2 Look for strains high in linalool or al­pha/beta-pinene terps Cannabis con­nois­seurs will speak about “the en­tourage ef­fect,” de­scrib­ing the alchemy of the plant’s numer­ous prop­er­ties work­ing to­gether to cre­ate the unique “highs” of var­i­ous strains and phe­no­types. It’s not just THC or CBD creat­ing sen­sa­tions when smok­ing up, but a sym­phony of the plant’s many com­pounds, es­pe­cially ter­penes.

If you want to spark one with­out spin­ning out, look for strains high in linalool, the terp re­spon­si­ble for laven­der’s heartily calm­ing scent and renowned for its anti-anx­i­ety prop­er­ties. Pinene is na­ture’s most com­mon ter­pene. It is re­leased through the blood-brain bar­rier quite quickly, and helps us stay alert. Linalool and pinene are great ex­am­ples of how the en­tourage ef­fect can curb the pos­si­bil­ity of get­ting over-buzzed.

Le­gal weed gets an­a­lyzed for the THC and CBD per­cent­ages, and also the ter­pene pro­file. So don’t be shy about ask­ing your NSLC pot pro to help you find strains high in the terps you’re seek­ing.

3 Pre-roll joints or pack a vape, and leave the rest at home If you got it chances are you’ll smoke it, like the reefer ver­sion of Baroness Carolyn Tay­lor not un­der­stand­ing the term “left over wine.” The hol­i­days are a time of over­con­sump­tion in just about ev­ery way. But come on. Don’t waste your weed, es­pe­cially if you’ll be con­sum­ing from the “other” sec­tion of the NSLC. Get­ting ham­mered and baked si­mul­ta­ne­ously be­comes un-cute real quick. Best to bring a rea­son­able dose with you to the hol­i­day din­ner and dole out your tokes in a some­what cal­cu­lated man­ner.

Blue­berry Kush from Haven Street is a sweet and earthy indica-dom­i­nant strain ($11.95 for one-gram pack). With a 16.4 per­cent THC count, it pro­vides a cozy, gen­tle high. I cat­e­go­rize Blue­berry Kush as a “day­time-friendly” indica and would rec­om­mend it for shar­ing amongst a spliff cir­cle of vary­ing tol­er­ances. Haven Street’s 21.4 per­cent Mango

Kush indica, on the other hand, wal­loped me with dark and rac­ing thoughts, so maybe not the strain to reach for dur­ing the vi­ta­min D de­prived yule­tide ($9.95 for one-gram pack).

4 Don’t smoke in se­cret (if you can help it) Many keen con­sumers are still staving off their fam­ily’s out­dated, un­funny jabs about cannabis use, and the hol­i­days might mul­ti­ply how many clan mem­bers are around to per­pe­trate smok­ing stigma. Part of me is like, “it’s le­gal now so fuck ’em!” The other part of me knows that when I was in the cannabis closet, se­cret smok­ing to get through other­wise anx­ious fam­ily time was a ne­ces­sity—al­beit one oc­ca­sion­ally clouded by the para­noia of get­ting “caught.” My re­la­tion­ship with my par­ents im­proved ex­po­nen­tially when my medic­i­nal cannabis jour­ney be­gan, and mi­cro­dos­ing be­fore phone call catch-ups or bummed rides to Costco helps take the edge off my ten­dency to auto-teen in the pas­sen­ger seat.

If you’re look­ing for sim­i­lar sup­port, the buddy sys­tem just may keep you from green­ing out, or help give you some needed per­spec­tive to not freak about the fam­jam “know­ing” you’re high. Chances are at least a cousin or two will be down to go for a post-turkey stroll and pass that dutch with you, or at least keep you com­pany while you con­sume. Ei­ther way that rolls, I again rec­om­mend the mi­cro­dose, per­haps in a pre-packed vape.

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