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Dear Dabby… How Do I Navigate Concentrate Culture?


Dear Dabby… How Do I Navigate Concentrate Culture?

Photos Shannon Paras/The Floral Lens

Dear Dabby… How Do I Navigate Concentrate Culture?

Keep your glass clean and take caution when consuming large amounts of THC through a dab.

What’s the best way to keep my glass clean? — Dirk T. Gere

If you are talking about your bongs and pipes, salt and alcohol are the way to go. Coarse or kosher salt is probably best, but it isn’t essential. Seal the holes of your piece, pour in some alcohol (I like the 90% stuff), add some salt and shake vigorously. The alcohol acts as a solvent, the salt acts as an abrasive, and in short order, you have a squeaky-clean piece. Rinse well and enjoy. You should probably clean your piece at least once a week and change your bong water every session.

For gunky dab rigs, let ’em soak in some alcohol for a few hours or overnight, use a pipe cleaner to get into the nooks and crannies, rinse well and dab out. Take care of your gear, and one day you will be able to give your children vintage bongs and pipes. I look forward to seeing your piece on “Antiques Roadshow.”

Do vape pens count as dabbing? —E. Theroar

Eh. I mean, you are burning a concentrated cannabis product, but is it really a dab though? It’s the same principle — using extremely high heat to instantly vaporize a cannabis distillate into a vapor form, which is then inhaled — but it seems to me that vapor cartridges are a kind of watered-down version of dabs. I mean, when we think “dabs,” we think big globs and torches and e-nails and rigs and arguments over the best melting point for each particular terpene, and silicon mats and dab sweats, and backpacks full of tools and tackle boxes full of all manner of waxes, oils, crystals and shatters.

When we think “vape,” we think about discreetly maintaining our buzz in the movie theater because “Aquaman” is two-and-a-half hours long and we want to be hella high when the undersea battle takes place. So, I am gonna say that vaping and dabbing are completely different, which is not to say that you can’t go buy a dab rig that looks like a vaporizer (although some of these new portable rigs don’t look very discreet) and dab your little heart out.

What’s the craziest dab you’ve ever taken? Do you really have to sit down when taking a dab? — Ben D’Yurnees

You know, I’m not a giant dabber. I like a little social dab now and then, but I like to get pleasantly high, not stoned into a dab-a-tonic stupor. However, there was this one time in the ’90s, before “dabs” was even a word, back when we used to smoke hash oil off of charcoal briquettes. When my band was performing at the C.H.A.M.P. (Cannabis Helping Alleviate Medical Problems) dispensary in San Francisco, someone gave me the biggest hash oil hit I had ever had in my life. I actually only smoked half of it and I was in outer space.

Fortunately, I am a professional, and I was able to finish my set. I will admit that I had a small panic attack on the way to my next show because I thought I might be too high to perform, but I ended up having one of the best sets in my comedy career at that point. The first rule of being extremely high is always: Don’t panic, it’s just weed. The second one is: Stay hydrated.

Anyways, there are plenty of videos on YouTube of people taking ginormous slabs of dabs directly to the face. I understand that America loves feats of over-consumption, but smoking 7 grams of concentrated cannabis in one go just strikes me as wasteful. However, this is still a nominally free country, so if smoking $200 worth of wax at one go is your thing, be yourself, boo.

Second part: If you aren’t used to smoking dabs (or wax or shatter), you should probably sit down at least the first few times. Weed is a vasodilator, meaning that it will lower your blood pressure. Dabs come on quick, creating a rapid vasodilatory effect, and boom, you are out like a light. Sitting down will help you avoid this problem. So will staying hydrated, not doing too many dabs in a row and not getting drunk before you dab. Weed is fun, but weed is still a drug. Use drugs responsibly.

TELL US, what’s your most burning concentrate question?

Originally published in Issue 36 of Cannabis Now. LEARN MORE

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