The connections between cannabis and creativity are undeniable.
From musicians to poets, business executives to painters, millions of us already rely on this singular plant for creative inspiration. And that’s one of the reasons my colleagues and I here at The Highlight are going to start profiling our favorite creatives to explore their histories with their chosen mediums and their cannabis-centric inspirations as well.
Since I’m new to the team — a lifelong writer and Bloom Farms’ new Content Director — we figured we’d start with me first.
Six months ago I was a journalist running cannabis news site The Cannabist from The Denver Post’s newsroom, and now I’m a freelance journalist working with Bloom Farms (and other cannabis companies) on elevating their editorial projects. I’m thrilled to be working with Michael Ray and his team at Bloom Farms, and you’ll start seeing some changes to our blog and newsletters in the coming weeks.
One of those changes is this Cannabis Creatives profile series, so without further ado.
I’m the Content Director at Bloom Farms, and I’m also a freelance journalist and founder to the content agency Grasslands.
Primary social media:
I’m a writer.
What is your present state of mind?
Buzzing like a bee. It’s a busy week at Bloom Farms, where we have some exciting announcements to make in the coming weeks.
Pro tip: Sign up for our newsletter at the bottom of our our blog to receive our weekly Highlight, which includes original stories and the latest on Bloom Farms products and events — including our Cannabis Career and Job Fairs and our Bloom Fit yoga classes.
How old were you when you first discovered your creative gifts?
I could already tell in elementary school: I was way better in language and writing classes than I was in science or math. That was the one consistent through college, and writing always came somewhat naturally to me.
What is most difficult about working in a creative field?
As a writer, your job prospects are somewhat limited in traditional journalism circles. I worked in newspapers for 20-plus years before breaking out on my own and joining the Bloom Farms team. But writing is also a skill not everyone has, and even in an era of rampant micropublishing, people still understand the value of proper grammar and intelligent communication.
Are there any other mediums with which you express yourself?
Sadly no. I keep trying my hand at painting, as I think it would rule to be able to express myself in such an abstract visual medium. Alas, each time I pick up a paintbrush the outcome is hilariously bad. Maybe someday.
How long have you been consuming cannabis?
Regularly? For about five years.
Describe your first high in five words.
Delightful. LOL. Enlightening. Nervous. Embarrassing.
What is your favorite word?
What is your least favorite word?
How does cannabis factor into your creative process?
It oftentimes fuels the idea generation part of my creative process. I’m not the guy who blazes before a deep writing sesh. That’s not me. But I am the guy who takes notes while he’s high — and I’m good at checking into that notebook from time to time to gather inspiration for stories and writing projects.
Flower, edibles or concentrates?
Edibles and concentrates — and here’s where I’ll admit that I’ve loved the Bloom Farms Single-Origin Reserve cartridges long before I worked for the company.
What is your favorite strain?
Not being a big flower guy, this is a little hard to answer. But given that I have gotten more and more into vaporizing flower I’ll go with Golden Goat. The nose of a well-cured Golden Goat is one of my favorite smells in the world. Even if I’m just shopping for edibles, if I see a jar of Golden Goat buds, I’ll always ask to smell the jar.
Tell us about your favorite kind of high — what’s that feel like?
My favorites are those smiley, giggly highs that are best described as silly. Cannabis can oftentimes remind us what it’s like to feel like a child, taking us back to a time before we knew responsibility. Sometimes it just feels good to laugh and do something unexpected, and marijuana is something that often opens those doors for me.
What turns you on — creatively, spiritually or emotionally?
Intelligence and involvement. I surround myself with brilliant people who have become friends, and I love seeing people I care about immerse themselves in something they are passionate about.
What is your favorite curse word?
Fuck. It’s universal and to-the-point.
What was the most impactful event of your life?
It wasn’t my first trip abroad, rather my first deep-dive trip to the third world. I spent five weeks backpacking alone in India years ago, and it was a life-changing outing. I learned a lot about how lucky we are in that time, but I also picked up on so many things we can do to improve the world around us.
Who is your real-life hero?
My mom. She’s a legend — 80 years old, still travels internationally, still works part-time (to fund her travel) and oftentimes thinks younger than most 40-year-olds I know.
Who is your fictional hero?
Alice — yes, she of Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland fame. Lewis Carroll created such an amazing young woman in Alice — an adventurous feminist who falls through the rabbit hole and eats mushrooms (not that kind!) with a caterpillar and uses a flamingo to play croquet. I can respect that.
What sound or noise do you love?
My wife’s singing. What she lacks in pitch she makes up for in utter joy.
What sound or noise do you hate?
Aaron Neville’s singing voice.
How do you express love?
What do you think happens after you die?
I agree with the philosophy and sentiment Iris Dement expresses in her song Let the Mystery Be, which was the theme song for the second season of HBO’s The Leftovers. (And omg season three is currently slaying me.)
How would you live if you had limitless money?
Comfortably but not opulently, and I’d give most of it away to people who needed it more than me.
Describe your perfect day.
Ideally I’d be traveling with family and friends in Southeast Asia, but if I were home in Denver: Biscuits and gravy and cannabis edibles in bed with the lady, the two chiweenies and the Maine Coon with the Avett Brothers on the Sonos. A long bike ride with a picnic, followed by a solid nap. And a massive dinner party with friends and family on the back deck.
If you had only one hope for the future of the cannabis plant, what would it be?
I would like to see cannabis fully understood. As a journalist who has reported on this plant for more than three years, I was always determined to do my best to extinguish the misinformation that has long surrounded cannabis. But just think about what we’re about to discover in the next 10 years — about cannabis’ medical applications and about its impacts on 420-legal communities. I am thrilled to better understand this plant and to continue to help spread reputable information in this space.