Thought Catalog

Why I Think Weed Sucks

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I used to smoke weed a lot. Throughout my four years of college, I probably smoked weed once a day on average (this average includes, for example, two-week stints of zero smoking as well as month-long binges of heavy consumption, when I’d smoke two to four times a day). My third year of school, I did an exchange program in Holland. The point is, I have been, at times, a total stoner. So, I mean: I get weed. I get it. But I quit smoking awhile ago, and now I think it sucks. Here’s why.

REASON WEED SUCKS #1: IT’S A WASTE OF MONEY (NOT APPLICABLE TO MEDICAL MARIJUANA)

Smoking weed all the time is a huge drain on your finances. An eighth of weed here in Seattle costs $50, and a regular smoker could go through an eighth in a week, easy. And what do you do when you smoke weed? You sit on the couch, watch a movie or play a video game, and spend more money on a bunch of gross food that you later feel gross about. What did you get out of it? Drymouth? Impaired motor abilities? Short-term memory loss? Relaxation? I guess. I dunno. It seems expedient to find cheaper, less tar-consumptive ways to relax, because with weed, you’re relaxing for like $10 an hour, a smelly apartment, food binges, and tar on your lungs.

REASON WEED SUCKS #2: IT MAKES YOU DUMB

Yeah, it does. When you’re high, you’re stupid. And if you’re high all the time (or from the time you get home from work until the time you pass out on the couch with your bong on your lap), well then – you’re stupid all the time. Because when you get high, it’s difficult to think straight. When you get high, it’s difficult to think in a normal capacity (key word is normal). When you get high, you aren’t supposed to drive because you’re impaired.

When you get high, you’re on drugs. And when you’re on drugs – you’re dumb. It’s ok – being dumb on drugs can be fun. We all get dumb on drugs sometimes. But don’t try to tell me that you’re actually smarter on weed, because you aren’t. What actually happens when you’re high is your eyes get red, glaze over and close halfway; you laugh a lot, you misunderstand people and can’t follow what they’re saying, and non-high people dismiss you because you’re “just high.”

REASON WEED SUCKS #3: IT MAKES YOU PARANOID AS SHIT

Weed sucks because it makes you paranoid. Not like, paranoid about the cops raiding your house and finding your bong (well, maybe that, too), but paranoid about just being around other people. When people ask me if I want to smoke weed with them and I tell them thank you, but no, and they try to pressure me further into smoking, I tell them “You don’t want me to smoke weed with you. My facial expression will become very afraid and then I’ll just leave the room without saying anything. I’ll kill the vibe. Believe me – you don’t want to smoke weed with me.” This has actually happened. The problem with weed is that it gets into your head and starts making you ultra self-aware to the point where your sensitivity to social cues is literally tormenting. It also makes you so aware (as David portays so well in the video) of yourself that you begin mentally berating yourself for all the “wrong” things you’ve done in the recent past. And so once you smoke weed, you’re done. Time to go home.

REASON WEED SUCKS #4: WEED IS THE ANTI-PRODUCTIVITY DRUG

When you smoke weed, you’re more likely to get into a YouTube conspiracy video tunnel than you are to finish editing the first three chapters of your thesis. Weed steals your time and turns it into a pile of warm mush that smells like Taco Bell. Yes – maybe you got high that one time and beat the latest Gears of War or whatever – but, sorry, that doesn’t count as productivity. The truth is that weed just makes you want to sit and stare at a wall, or at a flashing TV screen, or at a video game. But like, do you really think that, when you’re older, you’ll remember all those times you took bong hits and watched Good Movies to Get High To like Inception and Pink Floyd’s The Wall? “Man, that was the most exciting and stimulating time in my life! When I got high every day and played video games and watched lots of UFO videos on YouTube alone in my room!” Seems unlikely.

REASON WEED SUCKS #5: YOU GET OBSESSED WITH IT

After getting addicted to weed, it’s like you have to have it to feel okay. You spend all day needing to be high. You spend hours driving around with your friends simply trying to get a bag of weed. Entire nights are cancelled or Not Good Enough because you didn’t smoke beforehand. Drama ensues over Who Smoked Who Out and who bought the last bag of weed. And when there’s no way to get it for the time being, you find yourself smoking the saliva drenched ends of rancid joints and scraping the tar out of a metal pipe and smoking it.

_____

That said, I’m all for legalization, if only to end the massive waste of taxpayer money that is the Drug War, and to make it easier for sick people to get some pain relief. I have no moral problem with weed. I will not judge you for smoking weed, because I believe that smoking weed and being a Good Person are not at all mutually exclusive. I just don’t like it. I am a veteran of smoking weed – I smoked it heavily for four to six years of my life. So I feel somewhat justified in my bashing of weed. And I know that some people identify very strongly with weed, so to those, I say: congratulations for getting all the way to the end of this article! One would have thought you’d be off watching Windows Media Player visualizations to Bob Marley by now. TC mark

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    • http://brianmcelmurry.blogspot.com/ Brian McElmurry

      True, but I have read books stoned and remembered them well. Like all of Tao Lin's books, Moby Dick, The Toy Collector. But it's true what you write.

      • Alethiea

        I really disagree with this whole article… I see where you come from … but i think you should really do your home work… see unlike you while im high im able to do everything! i do everything high all day long.. I mean sure when you first start smoking you have a hard time functioning… if thats the case i suggest using a lower dosage of cannabis.. you were probably smoking some purple haze and now your bitchin about sleeping… hahaha smoke some dirt weed from the mexicans and smile a little :D thats all.. cause the truth is our body has thc originally when we are born.. we ruin our natural tch through i lives by eating nasty foods (mcdonalds…. ect… ) I understand Cannabis isn’t for every one… but dont make it illegal for those who need it for their anxiety and other issues… its so unfair for us to have to suffer…

    • ThinksYourDumb

      Your a dumbass. Go smoke a joint and chill out.

      • shelfd

        “your”

      • QD

        You mean “you're/you are”?

      • srt

        Some people can strongly agree with the paranoid aspect the article brings up. I’m one of those people. It crept up on me slowly over a few years of smoking, going from a carefree, wonderful thing to a anxiety, heart palpitation inducing high. You tell yourself to just calm down and you think that the next time you will master it and go back to the old, good feeling, but it is a brain chemistry thing and out of your control. What doesn’t help is stoners that can’t relate to your feelings telling you things like “you just need to chill and smoke a blunt, mannnn”. These stoners often think the person is lying about their negative feelings or are just being a wuss. It isn’t true usually, and is a product of a person with little imagination or empathy who has bought the hype that weed is some all-good, miracle plant.

    • http://www.facebook.com/gregpphoto Greg Petliski

      “When you get high, you’re on drugs. And when you’re on drugs – you’re dumb.”

      I take offense with that. Drugs, even the same drug, can be used in a variety of ways. I use psilocybin mushrooms for purposes of meditation and transcendence. In no way does this make me dumb, before, during, or after the experience. I would apply the same feeling towards marijuana. Maybe you feel stupid when you're high, but me, I feel like reading and discussing Dawkins, or creating art, or watching others create art. Point is, drugs do not make you dumb. Dumb people are just dumb.

      • http://twitter.com/kyleangeletti Kyle Angeletti

        Agree that dumb people are just dumb (or dumber on drugs) but dude you can't say that you're as coherent after a joint or on mushrooms. Especially the shrooms.

        I can drive after (or during) smoking a joint, I would never when I'm tripping balls.

        • http://www.facebook.com/gregpphoto Greg Petliski

          Marijuana and psilocybin are two different substances. I feel no different while smoking weed and in my seven years of driving, I've received no moving violations and have been in no accidents. I would never attempt to drive while tripping. That said, I am mostly coherent when I trip. I don't take mushrooms to see pretty colors. I take them to expand my horizons, to open my way of thinking, so I usually don't take a large dose, enough to have the third eye open up.

        • Jew

          are you one of those people who identify with drugs so much that they basically become your whole personality, like you blow it way out of proportion and feel some deep personal connection with this totally meaningless act? i kinda feel that way when i write LOST fan fiction

        • Customconcern

          Dude, Lock/Jack slashfic or GTFO.

        • http://www.facebook.com/gregpphoto Greg Petliski

          Isn't everything a meaningless act? Unless you're copulating to pass on your genes, you're doing something meaningless in the long run. So yes, I choose to experiment with psychedelic drugs to feel a deep personal connection with the universe around me. Anyone who has had similar experiences can tell you that it is as real as it gets (remember, psilocybin works by blocking serotonin reuptake for a short period of time; it does not latch onto brain receptors or put holes in your brain like E..) I do not identify myself solely with drugs, but in the same vein that First Nation peoples would go on spiritual vision quests, and what they learn from their quest often accompanies them for the rest of their lives.

        • Walters

          you realize though that all you're doing is ingesting chemicals, right? and that it's about as mystical and supernatural as like eating mcdonalds? just making sure

        • http://www.facebook.com/gregpphoto Greg Petliski

          Chemicals eh? Whats a chemical? You do know the body produces alllllll kinds of chemicals. Furthermore, there are receptors in the brain that THC attaches to. So why then, if we're not supposed to do drugs, are our brains hard wired to do exactly that?

          People have this aversion to chemicals. “Oh, thats got chemicals in it, dont eat it.” EVERYTHING is a freakin chemical! All the proteins your body produces, all the medicine you take, the food you eat, all chemicals!

      • yo88

        Wow, you are like, sooooo zen.

        The author is right. People who do drugs are dumb. They take them to get high, to alter their current state of mind into something less than coherent. Maybe you think you're achieving some spiritual plateau but to the rest of us you're just a zoned out junkie.

        • http://www.facebook.com/gregpphoto Greg Petliski

          Would you say the same thing to a shaman from an indigenous culture? Cusz they like drugs too.

        • Thetruth

          you, clearly, are a dumbass.

      • Joa

        yo i heard some dude on the internet brags about reading dawkins and my genius alert went off

      • Weed

        Why do you “take offense with that” did you invent drugs

    • http://twitter.com/kyleangeletti Kyle Angeletti

      I think you make some very valid arguments; 1 and 2 are likely irrefutable if a given stoner is being honest.

      But I enjoy a left handed cigarette pretty regularly, and have to say that 3 and 4 are totally unique to the individual. I never get paranoid, can be very productive with certain things. Smoking a joint and then cleaning my place.. Look out. Same goes for most chores.

      Running out when you really want some does suck, but gone are the days when that induces drama.

      That being said, I have quite a few friends who took the same road to a similar opinion, and I respect your reasons for no longer enjoying it.

      • Brandon

        word i am down

        my argument is mostly directed toward being addicted to weed probably

        often i wish i could smoke just to enjoy myself as i did during the times when i actually enjoyed myself while high, but i think it just can't happen anymore

    • http://twitter.com/_thelovemonster Kelsea Eaton

      Hmm. I'm not even a ~stoner~ and I'd have to disagree with this. Smoking is different for everyone and while you may have had a bunch of really shitty things happen to you– that doesn't happen to everyone. Not wanting to be around people while high isn't necessarily a bad thing, there is a time for smoking just like there is a time for drinking. Also, smoking does not always make you dumb. While I have been so high that I couldn't stop laughing and being a complete idiot, I've written some of my best papers while under the influence of marijuana. Just recently I wrote an A paper after smoking. Oh, and back to the not wanting to be around people thing. That really depends on who you are with. If you aren't hanging out with people that you feel comfortable with anyways, you will feel that way and you won't want to be around them. But when I smoke with my friends or people that I genuinely like, I still enjoy their presence while smoking. Some people I know actually become more social when high. So, while this is a well written piece… I definitely don't agree with most of what you say. You make it seem as if this is THE weed experience that everyone should expect when it really isn't.

      • Brandon

        cool, we can disagree, i disagree with you that I make this seem the THE weed exp., feel like it is a given that everyone's experiences are different

      • Aof

        Why “I Think” Weed Sucks

    • http://twitter.com/Dan_Hoffmann Dan Hoffman

      I wanted to write an article last night about how I don't like weed but because I smoked weed I was too high to write an article.

    • Wolfsenshi

      Every person reacts differently to everything. Just because you're dumb on weed doesn't mean other people are. I work 40 hours a week with salary pay. I own a house, maintain a family life, have friends, write, record, and produce music 40 more hours a week and I also find time to write and shoot films. I smoke weed every single day. In fact, I find myself more focused and ready to work when I'm high than when I'm not.

      Also, weed is expensive because of the black market. If it were sold like cigarettes or alcohol, cost would drastically go down. Cannabis is a weed; it can grow in almost any environment. Cannabis shouldn't cost more than tomatoes do but because of prohibition and the black market, it is expensive. Likewise, if you are in a state with medical programs, you can always grow your own so that argument is invalid to some degree.

      I do agree with paranoia. Although most of that paranoia again is a result of the black market. What would you be paranoid about if it weren't for the thought of the police and Big Brother coming to get you for possessing/smoking a natural plant?

      Also, multiple studies have been done by the Department of Transportation regarding driving while under the influence of cannabis and the results find that the majority of people drive just as well sober while under the influence of cannabis. Contrastingly, they found that even 1 shot of alcohol can severely impair your ability to drive. Because of the paranoia cannabis induces, drivers become even more alert and attentive to the task at hand, which is, of course, driving.

      I'm sorry man but in my experiences, I've found this. Dumb people who smoke weed become more dumb. Smart people who smoke weed become smarter and, interestingly enough, more fun to be around. If you're dumb to begin with, weed will make that worse but at least you'll have fun and it will relieve your stress.

      • Brandon

        guess i'm dumb to begin with

        but seriously i dont think the paranoia i was talking about had anything to do the with the black market, did you read my article?

        • http://hipsterfriend.blogspot.com HipsterFriend

          Yeah. You bitched about how it was expensive. That's what has to do with the black market.

          My main problem with this article is the use of the second person. It made YOU dumb. It made YOU paranoid. It made YOU unproductive. YOU got obsessed with it. Don't tell me what it does for me.

          And don't tell me that experiences are “obviously” subjective. You used the second person, meaning you either intended for the reader to apply all of these things to herself, or you just didn't know what you were writing. Take your pick.

      • Chiles

        Yo guy I guess someone taught you that capitalizing and punctuating correctly are the only criteria for intelligence, 'cause I'm reading your post and damn

    • hupi;n

      Yep

    • http://www.calvinmarkus.com peter parker

      glad you wrote this. 100% agree.

      plus stoners are seriously the corniest people i know hands down

    • Iagreewithyouwhilehigh

      I'm not addressing any of the commenters on here, soley Mr. Gorrell:

      You speak the truth my man. Brilliant article. I've been smoking for two years just in the manner as you described, and I am nearing my gonna-quit-this-stupid-shit breaking point…right after this last half 8th…

      I hate myself.

      • Brandon

        sweet, don't hate yourself, you can quit

    • Brandon

      Good article….I feel the same way about it all. Still like to smoke once in a while though.

    • Blueberry

      Do you also bash on drinking? Every reason you just stated also applies to drinking and drunk people. Just replace the word “high” with “drunk” and that about sums up drinking. There's a difference between “use” and “abuse” that you should clarify before bashing weed and people who smoke. And no I don't smoke weed

      • Brandon

        i dont think people associate drinking with playing video games or tripping out on Cool Movies to Get High To

        i don't think people associate drinking with ultra paranoia or ultra self consciousness, i think people associate drinking with the opposite

        • riles

          Also, the line between “using” and “abusing” marijuana is a lot fuzzier than alcohol. It's easier for a habitual marijuana user to pretend it's not addictive than an alcoholic.

        • http://www.facebook.com/gregpphoto Greg Petliski

          Thats because its easier to live your life addicted to weed than to booze. When Im high, I can still drive, still talk, still be professional. Not as easy to do when youre drunk. So big difference.

          Also, last time I checked its MADD, not Mothers Against Stoned Driving.

      • Customconcern

        He's already done a post about why he doesn't drink.

    • straycat

      Yeah, I smoked a lot for a while and it actually WAS an awesome time for me because it relaxed me from my constant feeling of unsettled-ness. I had enough money to afford it, my friends and I never were dependent on it and never had an argument about our weed, the munchies got me to a healthy weight for the first time in my life, I never felt bored, my social anxiety disappeared… I felt pretty great all the time. I could never concentrate on movies or video games so I'd end up cleaning, sewing, drawing, writing, or just going out and enjoying the world. I'll admit most of I wrote sounded pretty dumb the next day, but the other things always came out nice or were fun.
      Then came the fateful day when I came across some “bad stuff” and (at least at this point in my life) I'm pretty sure I'll never smoke again. Not cause I dislike or look down on smoking, but now I'd be scared shitless that I'd have another bad experience. I completely lost my head for over a week and it was fuckin traumatizing. Which is yet another reason for legalization, if it's all regulated and clean I know I'd feel way better about possibly smoking again someday.

    • El Dudearino

      yeah, well, that's just, like, your opinion, man.

    • Beantownflow

      I guess that you never fucked high. The best reason to smoke weed.

      • Brooke_rose

        like x 100000000000

    • ricky sccchitliyz

      agree with all of this, stoners get out and get a life

    • Randolph III

      Of course it's different for everyone, but overall, I couldn't agree more. My friends and I were obsessed throughout high school and a little bit into college, and though I knew I could be making better use of my time, it was truly fun then. We were just suburban white kids in a bland part of the country with little exposure to cooler alternatives. But as I got older it became increasingly difficult to justify the time spent on the habit, while simultaneously, new psychological effects took hold. Every time I smoked was a self-hating experience, much like Larry David in the mirror. No longer was I getting lost in a guitar solo or rolling on the kitchen floor laughing with my friends, now I was stuck in my head, thinking in circles, despising myself for not living up to my potential. After one disappointing night where, at a concert of my favorite band, I smoked against my better judgment and spent the night stuck in my head, I triumphantly threw my bowl in a waterway. I didn't smoke again for over two years, and I only have sparingly since then. And guess what? I got my shit together (somewhat), saved a lot of money, and became a more interesting person, I'd like to think. It's still fun on very rare and controlled occasions, and I'm all for a liberal drug policy, but it's just not worth it in the end.

      (I appreciate that the headline reads, Why 'I' Think Weed Sucks. Most blogs lose the 'I' and state it as fact to drum up controversy.)

      • T.W.

        Can relate to the psychological effects you had mate. It amplified an anxiety problem I had and I just got stuck in my own head rather than appreciating the hilarity of Ladder Goat, or the Maggot Brian solo or something.. that said, there's much worse things to be a regular user of.

        • T.W.

          Brian? Brain :D

    • Customconcern

      I like how when one person happens to express a negative opinion of a certain drug, those with positive opinions of that drug immediately tear into the person and start spouting all kinds of insults/justifications.
      “It makes me super/productive/creative/it only makes dumb people dumb/you haven't talked about the negative effects of using of this other drug therefore you're wrong/etc”.

      The best example of this is when you're sober at a party and some drunk assumes you're judging him/her for being drunk, thinking you're trying to get the moral high ground by being sober, but exhibit B: people in this comments section

      The vast majority of us (myself included) can't write A papers when we're stoned. The vast majority of us eat icecream from the tub and watch cat videos when we're stoned. I'll concede there are probably people who can write A papers when stoned but they're at the very far end of the bell-curve, up there with people who are more than 2.3 metres tall and people who like scat porn, etc.

      Weed does not make you 'smarter'. It makes you think in different ways.

      • http://www.facebook.com/gregpphoto Greg Petliski

        And by thinking in different ways, you are more likely to come to a solution to a problem you might not have thought of otherwise, correct? Ergo, marijuana makes you smarter. Suck that logic.

    • Chaoscossack

      Yet another essay-styled equivalent of a yapping puppy pissing on the floor/its self, and splashing about in it, brought to you steaming and wet, by Thought Catalog
      More accurately, B.S. Gorrell's harangue is evocative of a braying jack-ass: the noise it makes would be funny if were not so loudly annoying and ultimately “dumb” sounding.
      Deeming himself a “veteran” expert on the topic because he smoked it a whopping “four to six years of his life” (a veritable sage!) during college, (he must be smart!) where he “did an exchange program in (italicized!) Holland”…
      The reader gets the sense he has no clue as to how imperious and asinine he comes across;
      it would be funny if it wasn't so stupid and annoying.

      • um

        are you serious, bill o'reilly? you wanna call him a pinhead, too? because you're making some really thought-provoking arguments here – just thought you'd like another!

      • http://www.facebook.com/brad.pike Brad Pike

        You sound lonely, like there's a void in your soul that can't be filled except with hate. It makes me sad.

        • http://www.facebook.com/gregpphoto Greg Petliski

          Hate is a great filler of voids. Duct tape works too.

    • riles

      “But don’t try to tell me that you’re actually smarter on weed, because you aren’t.” Thank-fucking-you, man.
      Even if people CAN write a paper stoned, imagine how much better it would be if they were sober. I smoked weed last thursday night and proceeded to find it impossible to get up for my friday morning classes and so I just didn't go. I probably would have gone if I hadn't smoked the night before. It sucks every ounce of motivation out of me. I smoke sometimes, and I definitely “get” marijuana, but I feel kind of sad for those addicted and how small life is for them. My older brother being one. Your “you tube-ing conspiracy theories” example definitely hit home for me because that's all my brother DOES. That and playing x-box with his stoney friends that are off at college, but he doesn't get that weed effects him differently than them, and he needs to quit smoking weed to succeed. A certain group of friends from my home town that I'm friends with on facebook just had a month long “count down” via facebook statuses counting down till 4/20 with things like “0mg!!!! im so excited!!!!” What I don't understand, is how is 4/20 different than any other day for them? Why get so excited for a pretend “holiday” when it will be the same as every day?

      P.S. You should write a “How to Quit Smoking Weed Everyday” because apparently it's pretty difficult when you neeeeeeeeed to smoke weed everyday.

      • Customconcern

        also i think stoners need to find a new holiday date.

        20th of april: hitler's birthday and the anniversary of columbine high school.

        bad vibes, man.

    • outcast

      try feeling this way when all you friends smoke all day.

    • L Peezay

      I just lol'd at “An eighth of weed here in Seattle costs $50, and a regular smoker could go through an eighth in a week, easy. ” I WISH I could get by spending $50 a week on weed!

    • L Peezay

      P.S. Get really high and then have sex afterwards. I bet you'll change your mind.

    • http://twitter.com/CowboySandtoes Cowboy Santos

      Bob Marley

    • Greg

      paranoia has literally forced me to leave rooms when I get too high, it's embarrassing as hell haha

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