This site is under maintenance, but will be back up before you can say tetrahydrocannabinol.

Years of experience in the Medical Cannabis arena have taught us that it is easy to chase THC levels in the pursuit of pain relief. It's easy to believe that more is better. In reality, a patient's choice of strain for pain treatment could have more influence on pain relief than the actual volume of THC consumed.

It is generally accepted among Medical Cannabis professionals that Type I and Type II are the best strains for pain relief. In addition, some patients seem to do better with certain terpene profiles. Linalool, pinene, beta-caryophyllene, limonene, and myrcene immediately come to mind.

What does this mean for medical marijuana pain patients in Utah? It means that treating with Medical Cannabis should involve ongoing consultations with a Pharmacy Medical Provider (PMP) for the purposes of determining the best strain and dosage. It doesn't hurt to understand the differences between Type I and Type II strains either.

Type I Cannabis

Type I cannabis is easily the most popular type among Medical Cannabis users. A Type I strain is purposely bred to ensure that THC is the dominant cannabinoid. Type I plants generally have a THC level of 0.3% or more and a CBD volume of 0.5% or less.

How high can THC levels go in a Type I plant? That is a good question. We have heard of plants with THC content as high as 30%. However, such potent plants are the exception to the rule.

Type II Cannabis

A Type II strain is bred by the grower to contain balanced amounts of both THC and CBD. If both levels are above 0.3%, you have a Medical Cannabis plant. If both are below that threshold, you are looking at industrial hemp. Either way, the point is that the two cannabinoids are balanced. One does not dominate to an extreme degree.

Though Type III cannabis is rarely recommended for pain relief, it is worth discussing briefly. As you might have figured out by now, a Type III plant is CBD dominant. In nearly every case, it is going to be classified as industrial hemp with a THC volume of less than 0.3%.

Be Open Minded

What you have read thus far constitutes generally accepted guidelines within the Medical Cannabis community. But don't forget that you are a unique individual. How you respond to any given strain will largely determine what products offer you maximum pain relief. Maintain an open mind. Be willing to try different strains, delivery methods, and dosages in your search for the best treatment.

Also keep an open mind about microdosing. We know of at least one study that suggests microdosing could be a viable pain relief strategy for patients dealing with chronic neuropathic pain. The microdosing mindset calls for starting out with smaller doses to see how they work. You ideally want to use the smallest dose possible to achieve the desired effect.

Track Your Results

As you work with your PMP to figure out strain for pain treatment and dosage, tracking your results will help considerably. Write things down. Create a paper journal or write a digital note on your phone. The point is to track every time you use Medical Cannabis, how you consume it, and how it makes you feel. Such information is invaluable to your PMP.

Remember, chasing THC volume is not necessarily the best way to treat pain with Medical Cannabis. It is more important to find a strain that works for you. You are most likely going to want a Type I or Type II strain with a particular terpene profile. Your PMP can probably make a few recommendations.

Most of the study data we have on treating pain with Medical Cannabis relates to neuropathic pain. This sort of pain is generally the result of nerve damage. Diabetes patients are among those most likely to experience it. Fortunately, a study done a couple of years ago shows that Medical Cannabis can offer relief. And for some people, microdosing is the key.

Perhaps you've heard people complain about microdosing only being a way for manufacturers to make more money. We will not address microdosing in the recreational realm, particularly because Utah law only allows medical consumption, but studies do suggest that microdosing can be a valid medical strategy.

Smaller Doses of THC

Though microdosing can be practiced with CBD, it is most often discussed in terms of THC. Microdosing is a strategy that calls for utilizing the least amount of THC possible to achieve the desired effect. It is a strategy that makes a lot of sense, especially given the high cost of Medical Cannabis in most states.

As for the previously mentioned study, it was published in 2020. Its researchers determined that just 0.5 mg of THC provided significant pain relief when compared to baseline. More pain relief was reported when they boosted the volume to 1.0 mg. As Qualified Medical Providers (QMPs) we can tell you that 1.0 mg is not very much.

Why Choose Microdosing

The head of the organization that commissioned the study went on to hail microdosing as a possible way to help medical providers better treat their patients through more tightly controlled dosing. This is the primary advantage of the microdosing strategy.

Imagine a neuropathic pain patient who consumes copious amounts of Medical Cannabis to find relief. That's fine. With a valid Medical Cannabis Card from the state of Utah, that patient is free to treat in whatever way they and their QMP determine is best. But what if the patient could achieve relief using much smaller doses?

Microdosing ultimately leads to consuming less. The same amount of Medical Cannabis goes much further, extending the amount of time between pharmacy visits and, ultimately, saving the patient money. Furthermore, the patient's QMP can start with the smallest dosage possible and work up from there. If there is no net benefit to exceeding the dosage at which the patient finds relief, then they don't go any higher.

Still a Lot to Learn

The 2020 neuropathic pain study is just one piece of research. We obviously need more studies to either corroborate or refute its findings. And of course, we still have a lot to learn about cannabis and its ability to modulate pain signals.

Are you suffering from neuropathic pain? Have you discussed with your medical provider the possibility of treating with Medical Cannabis? Most cases of neuropathic pain are chronic, and chronic pain is on the state's qualifying conditions list. Ask your medical provider about at. And while you're at it, ask about microdosing.

More Doctors Can Recommend

We would like to close by reminding readers that more doctors, advanced practice nurses, and podiatrists can now recommend Medical Cannabis thanks to recent changes in the law. Even if a medical provider doesn't want to go through the process of becoming a state certified QMP, state law also allows for Limited Medical Providers (LMPs). These are medical providers with prescribing authority in Utah. They can recommend Medical Cannabis for up to fifteen patients.

Data suggests that Medical Cannabis can be an effective treatment for neuropathic pain. Microdosing may be the key. We encourage you to learn more about it before discussing it with your medical provider.

Pain is one of the leading conditions people cite when applying for their Medical Cannabis Cards in Utah. That should be no surprise. Why? Because pain sucks. It can keep you from enjoying daily life the way you otherwise would if you were pain free. With that in mind, let us take a look at knee pain. Can cannabis help relieve it?

We have a growing body of evidence showing that cannabis is an effective pain reliever. If you want more information on some of the studies, we recommend this excellent article found on the Cannigma website. As for studies specifically involving knee pain, they are limited; we don't have a lot to go on for this particular type of pain. However, we do know that the endocannabinoid system is partially responsible for regulating pain signals.

A Common System

It turns out that all vertebrates have an endocannabinoid system. That system is involved in regulating all sorts of biological functions. The endocannabinoid system influences mood, sleep, nervous system response, and more. It is definitely involved in pain regulation.

The interesting thing is that human beings naturally produce their own cannabinoids. The way those cannabinoids interact with brain receptors determines how effective they are at regulating bodily functions. If we can modulate the endocannabinoid system – and we can with cannabis – we can also modulate its regulatory capabilities.

In simple English, some cannabinoids found in cannabis plants bond to CB1 and CB2 receptors in such a way as to influence pain signals. Science hasn't figured out all the details yet, so the question is being worked on. But we do know that plenty of patients report significant pain relief after beginning a Medical Cannabis regimen.

Specific Knee Problems

In the arena of knee pain, there are plenty of things that can cause it. Osteoarthritis is a big one. In an osteoarthritis situation, cartilage in the knee joint has gradually worn away over time. Without enough cartilage to cushion the bones, they grind on one another. It can be a debilitating condition.

We are encouraged by anecdotal reports suggesting that osteoarthritis patients find pain relief in Medical Cannabis. But what about other conditions? Knee pain can be caused by a soft tissue injury, like a damaged ligament or tendon. It can be the result of bone damage. Even conditions like bursitis can cause pain in the knee.

For medical providers, the trick is determining what is causing the pain before deciding whether Medical Cannabis is the most appropriate form of treatment. There are other ways to treat bursitis, for example. Not only that, but traditional bursitis treatments also tend to be rather successful, so you probably would not need Medical Cannabis for this particular condition.

Acute Knee Pain

We should point out that acute pain was recently added to Utah's qualifying conditions list for Medical Cannabis. That means patients can plan ahead if they know they will be experiencing severe knee pain that would otherwise be relieved through opioid prescriptions – due to surgery, for example. They can apply for temporary Medical Cannabis cards in advance of the scheduled procedure, then have their medicine ready to go afterward.

Whether your knee pain is acute or chronic, you may find relief through Medical Cannabis. Talk to your medical provider about it. Also remember that all the providers at our numerous locations are Utah Qualified Medical Providers (QMP). Stop in to any one of our clinics for help obtaining your Medical Marijuana Card. We know the EVS and the regulations inside and out. We can help you get hooked up with Medical Cannabis in Utah.

If you follow Medical Cannabis in the news, you're probably familiar with the fact that chronic pain is the most often cited reason for using the drug. Between scientific and anecdotal evidence, it is pretty clear that Medical Cannabis can be an effective treatment and an excellent alternative to opioids and other prescription pain medications. But how does it work with your endocannabinoid system?

Studies looking into pain receptors and the endocannabinoid system have found an interesting link between the two. That link exists in the small number of cannabinoids naturally produced by the human body. They help regulate quite a few body functions – including pain perception.

The Role of Pain Receptors

What we refer to as “receptors” in the human body are actually chemical compounds. They are chemicals that send messages to the brain. Pain receptors do just what their name implies: they send pain messages to the brain as a way of alerting it that something is amiss.

We would bet that you have cut your finger with a knife at some point in your life. The very moment it happened, you felt pain. Your pain was the result of receptors notifying your brain that an injury had just occurred. Doing so accomplished a couple of things. First, it instructed the brain to tell the body's defense systems to get to work on the wound. Second, the pain made you consciously aware that you injured yourself.

Knowing what we know about the role pain receptors play, it stands to reason that we should be able to modify a person's perception of pain by modifying those receptors. That is exactly what researchers have been looking at in recent years. They have discovered that naturally produced cannabinoids already in the human body influence pain receptors.

Mapping the Endocannabinoid System

If you would like to know more about the link between pain receptors and the endocannabinoid system, the Cannigma website is a great resource. One of their articles discusses how scientists in the 1990s began mapping the endocannabinoid system after discovering that the human body naturally produces its own cannabinoids.

Mapping that system encouraged other researchers to begin investigating cannabis as a pain treatment. What they learned from their studies demonstrates that Medical Cannabis is an appropriate therapy for managing pain. Here are just some of the studies the Cannigma piece mentions:

These are just a few examples from the ever-growing body of research about using cannabis to treat pain. While research about other conditions may not be quite as robust, it’s encouraging to see such versatile potential in cannabis.

It is generally accepted that chronic pain is the number one reason U.S. patients use Medical Cannabis. But when you break the data down state-by-state, you discover that there are many other reasons above and beyond chronic pain. Furthermore, chronic pain is not even the prevailing reason in some states. Look at the data in detail and you may be surprised.

The Cannigma, an Israeli research organization that specializes in cannabis issues, recently published a post citing data from a study published in the Journal of Cannabis Research. That study investigated nearly three dozen Medical Cannabis clinics in five different states to determine what patients were citing as their reasons for using cannabis.

They then went ahead and did their own study looking at five different states across the country. Surprisingly, the top few reasons patients cited for using Medical Cannabis were not consistent across all ten states. Why that seems to be the case is not clear.

Chronic Pain a Big Reason

Chronic pain is a big reason for using Medical Cannabis. It was the number one reason cited by patients in Colorado, Maine, Oregon, Michigan, New Hampshire, and Arkansas. For the record, chronic pain is classified as pain that lasts for three months or more. It can occur daily or nearly every day.

This part of the data probably isn't surprising to you. We hear about people using Medical Cannabis to deal with chronic pain all the time. It is the most common qualifying condition for Medical Cannabis patients in Utah. But what about the other reasons? Is there anything else that competes with chronic pain in terms of sheer numbers?

PTSD, Cancer, and Anxiety

A significant number of Medical Cannabis users rely on the drug to help manage post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD). The disorder occurs in people who have experienced some sort of traumatic event. For whatever reason, their brains are unable to successfully deal with memories of that event in such a way as to allow patients to live their lives unaffected by it.

It turns out that PTSD is the most-cited reason for using Medical Cannabis in Connecticut. It also tops the list in New Mexico, while coming in second place in Arkansas and third place in Oregon.

Treating anxiety was the most common reason cited in Massachusetts. Anxiety is the second most cited reason in Maine and Connecticut. Overall, anxiety was the number two reason cited by patients in the Journal of Cannabis Research study.

Cancer also ranks high on the list. In some cases, cancer patients use cannabis to help deal with the nausea and vomiting associated with treatment. Other times, it is a treatment for cancer pain. Unfortunately, cancer patients experience pain as a result of both the disease and its treatment. Many consider Medical Cannabis a lifeline.

Between You and Your Provider

We cannot speak to the laws in other states, but we do know that Utah has a well-defined list of qualifying conditions for which Medical Cannabis is appropriate. Our main priority here at utahmarijuana.org is helping patients obtain their Medical Cannabis Cards. We are owned and operated by the Utah Therapeutic Health Center, an organization that operates six clinics throughout the state.

Our position is that your reasons for using Medical Cannabis are between you and your QMP. No one else needs to know. Should you decide to share that information, that is your choice. But as long as your condition is on the state list and Medical Cannabis is an appropriate way to treat it, we can help you get your card.

Did you catch our live Q&A session on April 1st? If you didn't, it's okay. We won't hold it against you. In fact, we recorded the whole thing for you so that you don't miss out on the education and conversation had. Watch the 90-minute video below as Tim Pickett, founder of utahmarijuana.org & Blake Smith, CSO of Zion Medicinal, discuss Medical Marijuana for mental health conditions before turning the floor over to you and taking all your burning questions. If 90 minutes is more than you can spare, don't worry. We'll be cutting this up into bite-size pieces to make it easier for you to find the information you're looking for. Subscribe to the Discover Marijuana YouTube channel to be notified when those go live.

We asked you to submit your questions early and all through the event, but we had so much fun geeking out about Medical Cannabis that we couldn't answer all of them without keeping you there overnight! (But really, how much fun would a Discover Marijuana Sleepover with Tim & Blake be?) Here are all the questions we didn't get a chance to discuss.

Where can I find information on how to qualify for cannabis cultivation licensure in Utah?

There are no current cultivation licenses available. Contact the Department of Agriculture  —more cultivation licenses must be added to the legislature before more become available.

I have bad nerve pain in both feet from peripheral neuropathy. Does cannabis help with nerve pain?

Yes, CBD is neuroprotective and is a mild anti-inflammatory. Combined with THC, it can decrease nerve pain. Some patients report a substantial decrease with the right dosing. We recommend ratios of 5mg CBD to 1mg THC to start, increasing the dosing to reach the desired effect. Sometimes it helps immediately, sometimes it takes a while with consistent use at low to moderate doses to see any results. Visiting with a QMP will be helpful.

How does cannabis help sickle cell patients?

Neither Blake nor Tim know of any significant data on sickle cell and cannabis. It might help with some of the pain, but no data has been released supporting the fact that it would help the underlying condition.

How would you capture the Mormon mom stay-at-home market?

What a question! I do not believe you will capture the market by showing bong rips or smoking joints. We have to build trust in the system, trust in the providers, and trust in the patients as well. If we are respectful to the plant and its potential benefits, while being honest about the risks and the stigma, I think we can make headway with a lot of different cultures and populations.

Is there a program for disabled veterans?

There is no specific program for disabled veterans. Tim’s clinic, UTTHC, offers a discount to veterans. We also offer free consultations and checkups during your first eight months in the program. Federal law protects veteran benefits when veterans participate in a state Medical Marijuana program, so you’ve got nothing to lose.

What is in cannabis that gives you dry mouth?

Cannabis inhibits saliva production by stimulating the CB1 and CB2 receptors. It’s the same stimulation that occurs with Anandamide. Anandamide is the endocannabinoid that stimulates CB1 receptors. This molecule is increased with physical activity, which is why running gives you a dry mouth and makes you thirsty. It’s the same mechanism.

Seems like I find something that really works for me and then when I go get it again, they don't sell it anymore and they never know when they're going to get it back. Any suggestions?

There are two suggestions I have. The first is to be patient, as consistent supply will come over the next 1-2 years. The second suggestion is to purchase your own CBD oilzion medicinal cbd tincture thc:cbd 1:1 tincture packages medical marijuana for mental health (Zion makes a great one that is available in most Utah Medical Cannabis pharmacies and all UTTHC clinic locations!). Then, purchase stronger products in the pharmacies and mix your own ratios. I guess a third suggestion would be to keep a journal about what ratios and milligrams of cannabinoids are in the products you choose. This way, when you go to the pharmacy and they do not have what you need, you can try to find something similar. Keeping a journal is always a good choice.

What’s up with all the Delta 8 saturating the market? Why would companies be selling it to patients as if it’s a product completely made from cannabis and listing it as part of the total THC content?

Stay tuned for an upcoming video about Delta 8 and its benefits and downfalls.

As a local cannabis business, how can we compete with larger out-of-state cannabis businesses moving into Utah?

As for Tim, out-of-state businesses don’t play much into the success of his business. However, when it comes to Zion, Utah law protects them by not allowing other operators to open businesses until the law is changed. Once that law changes, there are no guarantees. Anybody who is in the cannabis business will tell you we live in a constant state of change. It can be hard to keep up.

I don't feel that the Zion products help with nerve pain. Can you talk about that?

This is a really interesting statement that ultimately points to the fact that all products and people are different. Here’s another example: in medical school, we’re taught to treat depression with one of five medications. All have the potential to help the patient. If no improvement is made in the condition in a month or so, we change the medications. We are taught to try 3-4 different medicines before changing the class of medicine (antidepressants to stimulants, for example.) The same is true for cannabis. In fact, cannabis is even more finicky. I would recommend trying a different brand, different cannabinoid ratios, different terpene profiles, different delivery methods. With care and determination, always keeping a journal, you’ll have the best chance of finding something that helps. Blake won’t take it personally if you don’t use his product. The important thing to both of us is that you feel better.

Does Delta 9 THC degrade to Delta 8, or does cannabis naturally contain both?

Keep an eye out for an upcoming episode about all our favorite Deltas!

Would cannabis be a good solution for anxiety? Specifically the Delta 8 THC cannabinoid? I have heard conflicting statements.

Tim & Blake will be releasing a video in the near future to answer all your questions about Delta 8, Delta 9, Delta 10, etc.

I've heard that cannabis causes blood thinning. If I used a topical after surgery, would that be okay?

There is some debatable evidence about blood thinning and cannabis use. All of the evidence, however, relates to ingested methods — inhaled or oral. We aren’t aware of any evidence that topical cannabis could cause an increase in bleeding risk. Slather it on, you should be good to go!

I like the idea of softening pathways and creating new thought patterns with PTSD symptoms. I also appreciate this info about ADME! Do tinctures distribute and effect differently than vaping?

Once the molecules are in the bloodstream, they’re going to distribute the same. There are some complicated differences in the bioavailability of inhaled methods versus ingestibles, though. Inhaled products cross directly into the bloodstream without any metabolism or breakdown, so the bioavailability is very high and depends on the concentration of the product being inhaled. Digestion and absorption go through the liver, which changes the molecules and reduces bioavailability. Edibles can be 30 to 50% absorbed compared to inhaled methods. However, once it goes to the liver, THC can be transformed into a slightly different metabolite much stronger than THC. Therefore, edibles can sometimes cause a stronger reaction in the body, even though they are less bioavailable.

Keep an eye out for an upcoming article about this topic on the utahmarijuana.org blog. It’ll be pretty technical. Good question! Generally, no, there’s no difference in distribution and effect between delivery methods, only in the medications/product taken.

What treatment/products do you recommend for fibromyalgia?

We recommend starting with a decent amount of CBD combined with THC. Sometimes adding other cannabinoids can help, depending on the individual. Fibromyalgia is one condition where keeping a journal is paramount. Keep track of what you’re taking, be consistent, and you’ll likely find something that helps you feel better over time. I would say most patients require 4-6 weeks before really dialing it in. Try to stay positive and don’t give up!

Is CBD good for young kids (3-7 years old) with anxiety or do they need to stay away from all cannabinoids until older?

Well, the endocannabinoid system isn't fully developed until a person reaches 20-25 years old. That being said, we give our kids ibuprofen and Tylenol without batting an eye just because it’s FDA approved. Cannabinoids are naturally occurring and some amount of CBD is likely safer for all age groups. While I can’t provide specific medical advice for this question, in general, I would say trying a CBD product you trust for one or two months at low doses seems reasonable to me.

We have a handful of patients under 16 — the youngest of which is under two years old — who use CBD in low-to-moderate doses with pretty good results. Be honest about your child’s CBD use with your pediatrician or other medical providers. If you need more assistance or information, don’t hesitate to reach out and schedule an appointment with me to talk about it. We offer free phone consultations for all pediatric patients to help determine what the next steps are.


Tim & Blake can't thank you enough for your support of the Discover Marijuana educational video series. We've had so much fun creating these videos for you and bringing frank, unbiased education to the people of Utah and beyond. There's so much more Tim & Blake to come, so stay tuned! Subscribe to the Discover Marijuana YouTube channel to be the first to see new episodes, live sessions, and more educational videos about Medical Cannabis. Comment below to let us know what topics you'd like us to cover in a future episode, and subscribe to the utahmarijuana.org mailing list below to receive bonus content, invitations to events, and more.

What to Expect in this Episode

Utah has come a long way since the ballot initiative to legalize Medical Marijuana was first passed a few years ago. That being said, there is still a long way to go. Episode 45 of Utah in the Weeds discusses where the law is currently broken and how it might be fixed. Tim and Chris's special guest is a man named Bob Waters.

Waters is a former Navy man and media specialist. He is also a student now as well, going to school to learn horticulture so that he can eventually become a grower. He is very passionate about making Medical Cannabis available to as many Utah patients as possible. [03:04]

Tim, Chris, and Bob had a lengthy discussion about some of the most troubled parts of Utah's Medical Marijuana law. [20:13] They focused particularly on growing. [21:15] Because of the way the law is written, the number of growers and the amount of product they can produce is limited. Home growing is also prohibited in the state.

Waters believes the time for allowing regulated home growing has arrived. [27:04] It could both lower the cost for patients and remove the need
for some to cross state lines in violation of Utah law. Tim, Chris, and Bob all agreed that something needs to be done on both fronts. Prices need to come down and access has to increase.[45:04]

This podcast is for you if you like to mix discussions of Medical Cannabis with celebrity name dropping. Bob Waters has met some pretty interesting people as an advocate. He mentioned some of them in this podcast. [55:25] Primarily though, the boys talk about how state law affects patients and growers in a way that leaves a lot of room for improvement. The underlying theme is to be patient. Things will get better in time.

Resources in This Episode

Podcast Transcript

Chris Holifield: All right. I think we got the recorder button where the mics are hot. We've got the levels good, and let's welcome everybody out to episode 45 of Utah in the Weeds. My name is Chris Holifield.

Tim Pickett: And I'm Tim Pickett, medical cannabis specialist with utahmarijuana.org. And this week we have an interview we recorded with Bob Waters, a friend of mine that I've known for a year, with a deep knowledge of the cannabis space and some good opinions about what is wrong with the law and what needs to change. Yeah, Chris?

Chris Holifield: Oh, he was very opinionated, and I couldn't believe how vocal he was. I don't want to give too many spoilers here, but he was basically like, "Hey, I want to grow, and I don't care what you think about it."

Tim Pickett: Yeah. And you know what else is really interesting about him is the way he got into cannabis, his knowledge of what works for him as a patient. So he has both this activist side and this patient side, which it's an interesting conversation. I like Bob a lot and he's helped me expose our business. He talks to a lot of patients on Instagram. What is he? He's Bob Waters World 420?

Chris Holifield: Yeah. Yeah, on Instagram. So go give that a follow, and also I want to mention that we talk about a few famous people that he got to partake of cannabis with. I don't want to give any spoilers.

Tim Pickett: Oh, yeah.

Chris Holifield: So make sure you listen in for that, right? You got to-

Tim Pickett: Right up until the end, Chris.

Chris Holifield: Oh, yeah.

Tim Pickett: Because he's got that surprise at the end.

Chris Holifield: Oh, yeah.

Tim Pickett: Also, before we get into the interview, we have a Discover Marijuana YouTube channel and we're going to start posting. We have educational videos there that I do with Blake Smith from Zion Medicinal, and Chris and I are working on doing video for the podcast and going to put some stuff on there hopefully shortly. So I want to give a plug out for that before we get into this interview.

Chris Holifield: Absolutely. And make sure, utahmarijuana.org/podcast is where you can listen to all the podcasts on the website, as well as just subscribe on any podcast player that you listen to podcasts in. Also, go on utahmarijuana.org. I don't know if you mentioned this, Tim, you've got tons of great articles on there as well for people that want to get educated, learning about the laws here in Utah as well as even how to get your card, what to do once you get your card, so on and so forth.

Tim Pickett: Yeah. Excellent.

Chris Holifield: Let's get into that interview though with Bob Waters. I don't want to hold people up here too much. Anything else you want to mention about this?

Tim Pickett: No. Thanks, Chris.

Chris Holifield: I'm excited to play it.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, this is a great one.

Chris Holifield: All right, guys. Here we go.

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Bob Waters: I told my family that I wanted to go to California. I wanted to get into the cannabis industry, and I wanted to hang out and smoke weed. And wouldn't that be cool if I could hang out with Dr. Dre?

Chris Holifield: Now, how long ago was this?

Bob Waters: It was 2018.

Chris Holifield: Okay, so just a couple years ago.

Bob Waters: It was early 2018, yeah. Yeah, yeah. At that time I was working up at the Standard Examiner, at the newspaper. So I'm working in the newspaper, and I was a little ticked off. I was a little ticked off about how the cannabis industry was going. The VA was telling me cannabis is the way to go for my conditions. Cannabis just starts coming at me, you know what I mean? And I'm talking to my family and I'm seeing 4:20 on the clocks, like the crazy weirdo in the movies. And I'm telling my mom, I'm like, "Hey, hey."

Bob Waters: So fast forward through all that, I try to manifest this job, and I get a call from the publisher... Not Ogden Publishing, rather, it was in Ventura. He gives me a call and he was like, "Hey, you want to come down and be associate publisher of Culture Magazine?" I say, "Well, yes." So I go home, and I tell my family I'm going to go down there and be the associate publisher of Culture Magazine.

Bob Waters: The instance with Tommy (Chong) was a meet and greet that we had set up. It was at a dispensary down in SoCal. It was South Coast Safe Access, one of my favorite dispensaries down there. They love the veterans. Great discounts, great variety. We set up with Tommy. So his publicist come in, and we set him up there. The pictures I got on Instagram show me with him. He's hanging out with my wife and we're talking, and he's pretty laid-back, right? He's incredibly high, and he's been high for a while.

Chris Holifield: His whole life, right?

Tim Pickett: Yeah, pretty much for a while.

Bob Waters: So if you can understand, I don't think he has a tolerance either, but he's moving forward. So I'm trying to talk to him, and I'm saying, "Hey bro, can I get your autograph?" He's like, "Sure. Okay." So I grab a joint, one of his prerolls. I'm going to have him sign the joint. In the pictures he's arguing with me. He says, "No, man." What did he say? He said, "No, man. We smoke them. We don't sign them." I'm like, "No, bro. You sign this one. This is for my kids. This isn't for us. We could smoke another one. I'll go buy another preroll, bro." So he signs it, so now I have this little preroll signed by Tommy Chong, which I love, right?

Chris Holifield: Nice.

Tim Pickett: Cool.

Bob Waters: I've been tempted to smoke it a couple times up here in Utah since I got back.

Chris Holifield: During those hard moments you're just-

Bob Waters: Yes.

Chris Holifield: Now, you mentioned Ventura. Man, that's my home town.

Bob Waters: Oh, right.

Chris Holifield: Did you live in Ventura, or this just happened that this thing was in Ventura that you had to go to?

Bob Waters: Right. So they do like the City Weekly's, the publishing company out of there.

Chris Holifield: Yeah.

Bob Waters: And I was actually living down in Irvine at the time, working. The publication Culture was located out of Corona.

Chris Holifield: Okay, okay.

Bob Waters: Yeah.

Chris Holifield: Yeah, you just mentioned Ventura, my ears perked up. I was like, "Oh my gosh."

Tim Pickett: That's cool.

Bob Waters: No, Ventura, beautiful.

Chris Holifield: Yeah.

Bob Waters: Love the coast. We love going down through Malibu and then looping around the horn there and dropping in, just going through the bays and all that in Ventura. Love it.

Chris Holifield: Now, I imagine your history with cannabis goes back further than 2018, right?

Bob Waters: Yeah. Probably when I was about 11 years old. That's when I was-

Chris Holifield: So maybe five or six years ago then.

Bob Waters: Yeah, right. Quite a while ago. No, yeah. I was a kid. The first time I was introduced to cannabis we scored a nickel bag from a guy that was local in the area, probably about 11 or 12 years old.

Tim Pickett: Oh wow.

Bob Waters: Yeah.

Tim Pickett: Did you grow up around it after that? Did you notice it was everywhere in the community you were in or was it just like kind of everywhere else? Where were you? Where did you grow?

Bob Waters: My family had the album Up In Smoke, right? So, it was played on the stereo. You grew up around it. Roaches are in the ashtray.

Tim Pickett: Got it.

Bob Waters: So it was really more like this was normal in my family anyways, cannabis is normal in my family to some extent, and if not directly in the household, in the community. You meet those they meet, you get to see things like that.

Tim Pickett: Because I remember when we were talking one time, and you and I have known each other just barely over a year now, but we were talking about RSO, right?

Bob Waters: Mm-hmm (affirmative), yes.

Tim Pickett: Because I have a patient that needed some RSO and we were talking about it, and you had said when you were growing up the adults around you, when you were introduced to RSO they were like, "Yeah, don't mess with that shit. That's medicine."

Bob Waters: That's correct. That's correct. Well, because it's just so strong, the potency and the concentration too. When I was growing up anything outside of the whole plant, any concentrate was kind of frowned upon, it was something you were taking it to a different level. You didn't want to be the dude at 2:00 in the morning sitting in your underwear in the bathtub with two hot butter knives and a toilet paper roll in your mouth burning honey oil. You didn't want to be that guy.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, that's intense. That's intense imagery right there.

Chris Holifield: Yeah.

Bob Waters: You don't want to be that guy.

Tim Pickett: Yeah.

Bob Waters: So, concentrates are frowned upon, and RSO is like the granddaddy, the grand poobah of concentrates.

Tim Pickett: Sure. It has a place but really only, in my opinion, it kind of only should have a place in the medicinal type regimen.

Bob Waters: I would agree with you.

Tim Pickett: Right. It's just I just don't see that any ... I'm of the opinion that any substance that's that strong, that concentrated is probably not good for human consumption in general, unless there's a specific reason, RSO would fit that.

Bob Waters: I would agree. I think once it's manipulated outside of the whole plant, then we're taking it to a different place.

Tim Pickett: Sure.

Bob Waters: And then where are we going? Obviously I think Bob's condition let's say versus Mary's condition and what she might need and he might need, and the variables thereof, that the whole plant can provide perhaps what that individual needs, because I mean, we have this system to embrace the cannabinoids. So if it's there and she's ill, and the plant can fix that at a concentrated level, I think that's awesome, and that's a one-off case I think, it should be partnered with obviously their medical provider, and it's something they work together on. So RSO can do that. RSO can put you high as a kite for a year and a half and cure cancer, it can do that. Somebody that's dealing with PTSD is not dying from cancer. It's not that it's not ...

Tim Pickett: Yes.

Bob Waters: It's not anything other than noncomparable scientifically.

Tim Pickett: Right, right. You talk about RSO and curing cancer, and yeah, there are cases we had talked about this with Blake Smith at Zion Pharmaceutical that there is, it's like about one in 1,000 cases where RSO will shrink a tumor, at least what we know of.

Chris Holifield: Now, when you say an RSO, Rick Simpson oil.

Tim Pickett: Rick Simpson oil.

Chris Holifield: Yeah, yeah, yeah. For people that aren't familiar.

Bob Waters: Right, right, yeah.

Tim Pickett: Right. It's a really, really concentrated cannabinoid product. It's not available in Utah. (*At the time this podcast was recorded. RSO is now available in Utah.) So what do you use cannabis for now medicinally?

Bob Waters: Well, medicinally I microdose through the day to deal with the pain. We got a storm coming because I couldn't get out of bed this morning without smoking, and normally that's not the case. I know a storm is coming, but I'll microdose through the day because I had spinal fusions and I have a lot of heavy metal in my body. So the chronic pain that goes with that, the sativa hybrid allows me to function throughout the day to a pretty articulate level. I'm able to go to school, and function, and work, and all that good stuff.

Bob Waters: At night I'll use a heavier indica. I suffer from PTSD, and when I say PTSD I really just mean I suffer from the nightmares of war that haunt me, and in order to put them to bed I smoke indica so I can sleep. I don't want to dream, and I prefer that way, way, way over what I had chosen previously, which was alcohol.

Chris Holifield: Now are you drinking any alcohol?

Bob Waters: No.

Chris Holifield: You completely got off alcohol? All cannabis.

Bob Waters: Correct.

Chris Holifield: That's awesome.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, you kind of have a trifecta there with the chronic pain, the PTSD, and the addiction —

Bob Waters: Oh yeah, and I'm a gastric bypass.

Tim Pickett: Oh yeah.

Bob Waters: It was like here, have a beer, we all have a beer, you have one, I have three, you have two, I have six. That was terrible.

Tim Pickett: Yeah.

Bob Waters: Terrible.

Tim Pickett: For listeners with gastric bypass, and I used to work in bariatric surgery for six years, and the effect of alcohol is absolutely-

Bob Waters: Devastating.

Tim Pickett: Just multiple times.

Chris Holifield: Is it get drunk faster, is that what it was or something?

Tim Pickett: Absolutely. Yeah, you can't tolerate much alcohol at all. A lot of bariatric surgeons recommend people don't drink ever.

Bob Waters: Yeah, you should never touch it.

Chris Holifield: So what would happen if you had a beer right now? You would just get so drunk?

Bob Waters: It'd be three beers.

Chris Holifield: Three beers, yeah.

Bob Waters: Three beers.

Chris Holifield: Hey, cheap date.

Bob Waters: Yeah. It's awesome until you're in the closet, right? You're in the closet with your boxed wine because you can't drink carbonated anymore and you can't get it in your system fast enough. You're drinking it as fast as you can but you're puking it at the same time because you're just full.

Chris Holifield: And this was you.

Bob Waters: It was like Caligula, only they weren't tying off the end, you know what I mean?

Chris Holifield: Yeah.

Bob Waters: It was just coming out of my mouth. No, that was me.

Chris Holifield: I mean, are your family and friends pretty supportive of you using medical cannabis then? I mean, have they noticed a change within yourself since you've used medical cannabis?

Bob Waters: Well, it's hard to say because I did 20 years in the military.

Chris Holifield: Okay.

Bob Waters: And I was on the straight and narrow, right? I didn't mess with cannabis for 20 years, so the Navy told me not to. I followed orders.

Chris Holifield: Nobody was using cannabis in there?

Bob Waters: It wasn't worth it. I was told not to, it was pretty simple. I was told not to. The Navy took care of my family and I took care of the country, and I'd just do what I was told. I mean, it was there if you wanted to. I mean, you could just write a letter home and get whatever you want on a ship. I mean, it was there if you wanted it, but ...

Chris Holifield: But you weren't messing around with it.

Bob Waters: I wasn't messing around with it.

Tim Pickett: It just wasn't, it just doesn't ... Not a part of your life, right? Like it is now when you got out.

Bob Waters: Right. Also my conditions weren't as such, that necessarily or the true driving factors for why I participate with it. Because after I got out and retired, by that time I had been through the surgery, I had been into the alcoholism, I had had multiple spine surgeries, I was in a wheelchair, I was taking every opioid you can think of and I was nonproductive, right? So VA comes back and the dude just folds the folder and says, "Have you considered cannabis?" And I'm like, "I've considered cannabis, of course, but I don't want to be a stoner again, dick." You know what I mean? I was a little pissed off that this is what they decided, that I should just go get high. Oh, but by the way, you live in Utah, so you're screwed.

Tim Pickett: Yeah. Okay, so now you get into ... Is that kind of when you decided to get into the activism? Part of it, or did that take a while?

Bob Waters: Well, I was in California for this introduction, so it was a no-brainer. I went down to Dr. 420, I paid. I was still technically ... It's a back and forth deal between Utah and California for a while, but the deal was while I was in California is when I went to the dispensary, a dispensary for the first time. California I picked up my first clone, right? That was the first experience since I'd retired from the Navy and been done. We moved back to Utah, which has been my home, but doing that I subjected myself of course to the laws of Utah, so I abstained from cannabis again. I wasn't on the medications that they would rather me be on because I was resistant to those. So it was a volatile time for me and very painful time as well. But I got the job, I was working at the newspaper, and that's when-

Chris Holifield: In California.

Bob Waters: No.

Chris Holifield: In Utah.

Tim Pickett: That was the Standard Examiner.

Bob Waters: That's right. Then the VA, I'm back in with the VA and they're telling me the same thing Cali VA is telling me because I'm telling them, I'm like, "Yo, bro. I was down in Cali and everything is working right." And he's like, "Well, this is the way to do it if you want to do it, but you can't do it here."

Tim Pickett: Right. We get a lot of referrals from the VA frankly. They have a good system up there and they take care of people.

Bob Waters: They're great people.

Tim Pickett: And they know cannabis works.

Bob Waters: Yeah.

Tim Pickett: I mean, they can't use it at all. Thank god there's a law that doesn't take away your veteran's benefits.

Bob Waters: That's right.

Tim Pickett: If you're using within the state law, right?

Bob Waters: Right. Then there's a law that was just put on the floor recently by a representative I believe of the House from Florida. I posted his name, I can't pronounce it, but he's putting in a bill to protect those rights again for anyone that's prescribed. So abiding by the law, he's not asking for the Federal Government to do anything other than allow the states to operate their program without fear of federal repercussion.

Tim Pickett: Yep.

Chris Holifield: For VA.

Bob Waters: For the VA.

Tim Pickett: For the VA.

Bob Waters: Right. Because there's those in fear that want to step forward but they don't want to lose their VA rights and benefits.

Tim Pickett: Well, there's still a ton of vets who, they'll even come in here with their spouse and they don't touch anything with THC because they don't know, and even when you explain it they're like, "Yeah, no. I'm not going to risk it."

Bob Waters: Yeah, my buddy Israel even advised me, so go back to your question about the community, totally embraced and whatever. No, not necessarily, right? Because I come from two different worlds, three different worlds really now. But those in the straight and narrow that don't have that as an option for them as a medicine, the rules are set up to restrict that, and they're used to that. So they just need to be told it's okay, not be told, "Wink, wink, it's okay."

Chris Holifield: As long as they have their medical card in Utah it's okay though.

Bob Waters: Correct.

Tim Pickett: Correct, yeah. I mean, as long as, and that is-

Chris Holifield: I just want people to know that listening, right? Like hey.

And there is a federal law that protects the veteran benefits from being taken away if you're abiding by the state rules. Which means if you are smoking week outside of the law, if you don't have a card, then you don't have that protection as a veteran.

Bob Waters: Yeah.

Tim Pickett: So that's the caveat, right? We'll protect you, but therefore if you're now outside of the law, then you might not be protected.

Chris Holifield: So it's a good idea to get your card.

Bob Waters: So what do you do when the law is broken though?

Tim Pickett: Yeah, so talk to us about your opinion about that, because you wrote a letter to the governor about this.

Bob Waters: I have a very strong opinion about that.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, I mean, we agree on some of these things.

Bob Waters: And not all of them.

Tim Pickett: Even though I'm in business, I have this clinic, and we do, and it's expensive for patients, and you and I have talked a lot about how to develop a program for low income, and this cooperative. Okay, what's going on?

Bob Waters: Revenue is fuel.

Tim Pickett: Yes.

Bob Waters: We start there. Revenue is fuel. The industry needs revenue in order to fuel what it needs to do to progress itself. That's the market, and that's ever-present, without revenue. Normally it comes from sweat equity, it comes from private investors, it comes from people willing to put in their own money, people willing to run credit cards, all that terrible stuff. That's normal in any new market, new industry, new market. For Utah this is a new industry, it's a new market, and so it's okay. Except that they're using it improperly, or naming it properly, or theming it properly, or using the catalyst to the industry is based on the needs of patients, but the needs of patients aren't being met because they're governed by a law that is broken. Now, that's my opinion, it's not a fact.

Chris Holifield: So, explain this a little bit more. So you say you think the Utah medical laws are broken.

Bob Waters: I do.

Chris Holifield: Explain a little bit more. Not that I don't agree, but I'd love to hear your thoughts.

Bob Waters: So currently my doctor says I need Blue Dream.

Chris Holifield: Okay.

Bob Waters: It's my medicine. He also says that I need [amexopol 00:20:28], I need a stomach medicine.

Chris Holifield: Okay.

Bob Waters: I go to Walgreens, I have no doubt that they will have my meds or they will have them within a day or so. I cannot get Blue Dream.

Chris Holifield: Cannabis.

Tim Pickett: Yep.

Bob Waters: Cannabis, yeah. I'm stuck.

Chris Holifield: So in most states is that possible? It's like let's say you had a card in, even a brand-new state that just opened up. What's one of the newest states that just opened up? Say Virginia, right? Virginia is new, right?

Bob Waters: Oklahoma is going crazy.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, Virginia. Oklahoma is going crazy.

Chris Holifield: Would you be able to go there and get Blue Dream? I mean, can you-

Bob Waters: Well not anymore, the law has changed to restrict that.

Chris Holifield: This isn't just a Utah problem though, right? This is a common thing in most states that open up.

Bob Waters: I can only speak from my own experiences on that.

Chris Holifield: Yeah.

Bob Waters: I use Blue Dream to set the hard example. What's hidden behind that is the fact that the monopoly, the Utah governous monopoly over the restriction over the natural development of the cannabis market, it's noncompetitive. It doesn't allow for growers to come in, new growers to come in. They're going to offer different varieties, they're going to offer lower rates, they're going to often discounts, they're going to attract more patients. Now, this is all great for a retail market, but it's a medical market, and so it has a cap. If we had the data, and I know the boys in Provo have it, but if we had the data that could show us there are X amount of patients within the State of Utah that suffer from each of these different qualifying conditions and they earn X amount of dollars per year. X amount of dollars per year and then just do the math, it stops there.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, you're saying that basically if you were to take the actual medical data and say, "Here's how many people in Utah suffer from chronic pain."

Bob Waters: Right.

Tim Pickett: Because we know, we have all this electronic health data. Take all that information, then we can get an average income for all those people. Then we essentially know the potential market for cannabis for pain, for that condition.

Bob Waters: Unless I was trying to disprove that there's a need for it, then I can use the data to skew it to say that this is a limited actual demand.

Tim Pickett: Interesting.

Bob Waters: Bob's registered, he's a member of the state, he uses an ounce a week, but it's weird that he doesn't buy an ounce a week. That's weird.

Tim Pickett: Yeah. See, now you're talking about ... I think it's probably a little confusing to listen to all this.

Bob Waters: Yeah, I know, because I go all over the place.

Tim Pickett: Because we're here in person, so it makes a little bit more sense.

Bob Waters: I'm eager to talk about something, so I'll jump on one and then I get a little confused.

Chris Holifield: Dude, that's the joy of a podcast, man.

Tim Pickett: That's right.

Chris Holifield: It's all over the place.

Tim Pickett: That's right.

Chris Holifield: I mean, the thing is we get so many different types of people that listen to this podcast, Bob. I mean, you're one of the people. I mean, Tim, I mean all of us.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, all of us.

Chris Holifield: We got people that are listening that are new to cannabis, we got old timers, we got old school.

Tim Pickett: Sure.

Chris Holifield: So a lot of the people, that's even why I wanted to clarify RSO and I want to clarify these things because a lot of people they don't realize that hey, there are some people, like yourself, you said, "Hey, an ounce a week." I mean, some people are like, "Holy schnikes, that's a lot of weed."

Tim Pickett: Right. Yeah.

Chris Holifield: But to some people that's not, and the thing is people up on Capitol Hill, they might not realize hey, a lot of people might need an ounce a week, and if you were to go to the Utah dispensaries you're going to be dropping 400 plus on an ounce if you were to buy.

Tim Pickett: We talked before we started recording, you're a $24,000 a year habit.

Chris Holifield: Exactly, yeah.

Tim Pickett: Not a habit, but a medical need, right? It's funny how we say these things like we're-

Bob Waters: The state makes me feel like it's a habit.

Tim Pickett: Right, that's right.

Chris Holifield: But my question is, I've heard prices are pretty similar though to other states, and that's where I'm like, I hear-

Bob Waters: Well, here in the city no.

Chris Holifield: ... that the price is expensive, but when I hear that say Chicago or Pennsylvania is even more, for their medical they're looking at like closer to 80, 85 for an eighth.

Bob Waters: Right.

Tim Pickett: Right, and then there's this argument that we've heard from Bijan in Beehive that is, and we've heard it from Jeremy Sumerix at Deseret too. If you switch this market to retail and you start charging 20% tax on it, the $60 eighth here goes up to 80 bucks.

Chris Holifield: Right.

Tim Pickett: So we're not getting the whole picture, but back to your Blue Dream point, growing keeps coming back as this thing that is missing from, and really it's people like yourself maybe who are in this what I would consider legacy users or legacy growers. People who have experience with the product, they know what they want. They could probably grow a plant or two during the year, and whether or not that's going to be your whole ... It might not be your whole medical intake, but it would supplement. Think about if you could grow two plants a year and get four or five ounces, that's a lot of money.

Bob Waters: Well, the offset too it's you have the ability to supply almost your entire demand if the law is written correctly and allows you to have a continual growth cycle. As long as you have adults, adolescents and babies continuously, then you're harvesting continuously.

Tim Pickett: Right, from a plant perspective, not a human perspective.

Bob Waters: From a plant.

Tim Pickett: Yes, yes, you're right. As long as you have the ability to cycle through the plants and you knew what you were doing so you can pull the clones off and things like that. Do you think that there's a time now? So I like the market now. I think there are some problems with it, of course, like everybody. But I'm in it enough to know, or my opinion is we should all just be patient with the way things are and let things settle a little bit more, but that being said, we run into patients who cannot afford, well they can't afford the clinic fees, well they want to or they don't want to go to their primary care provider. One, their primary care provider might not offer the service, two, they don't know anything about cannabis and how to help somebody. So do you think that it's reasonable not to allow growing for now?

Bob Waters: The law is so anti-Utah, it sickens me.

Chris Holifield: The law in Utah. So, let's talk about this then.

Bob Waters: Yeah. I mean, let's think about it. We as Utahns are a state of self-providers. We are taught daily that we should be able to take care of our own. If there is a way for us to have a garden, if there is a way for us to have a food stock pile, if there is a way for us to have a little bit extra so that we can give a little bit extra. If there's a way to that, that's the Utah way.

Chris Holifield: The industrious state.

Bob Waters: Right.

Tim Pickett: Yeah. This provide for your neighbor, the community garden. I remember when I first got married we had a ward garden.

Chris Holifield: Yeah.

Tim Pickett: You know what though? They had to deliver the tomatoes to people before they went bad because there wasn't enough people to go get their own damn tomatoes. It was terrible.

Chris Holifield: There was an excess.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, right. But this Utah way, you are absolutely.

Bob Waters: The Utah law is written, it restricts that. The Utah law is written, it says you cannot do that. You cannot do that. You will do it our way, this way, inefficiently, you will comply. It's not a Utah thing.

Chris Holifield: But when you say not comply, that means growing, right?

Bob Waters: Correct.

Chris Holifield: Growing as far. Is that really the only part you have an issue? I mean, there are probably other things that you have issues with Utah laws.

Bob Waters: Well, there's a lot of legalities.

Chris Holifield: Yeah, yeah, yeah.

Bob Waters: So the first thing they changed recently in January when they restricted us from going to Colorado or outside the state, right? Previously to that the law was written that it forced us to violate federal interstate trafficking laws if we wanted to get the volume that we needed at the price we could afford in the strains that we needed. You'd have to cross the state lines, then risk federal prosecution.

Bob Waters: In January, that ... What would we call that, Tim? That luxury went away.

Tim Pickett: Right. Well, the luxury to break federal law, right?

Bob Waters: Went away.

Tim Pickett: And you have this ... Man, this is so complicated because there's all kinds of things that go along with this, including they postpone reciprocity, so people from out of state can't come, use cannabis yet until they developed that rule. If Rich Oborn is listening, Rich, I get it, you're busy. That law took a little bit of time. We've waited 20 years, we can wait a few more months. But the issue with the buying cannabis in outside markets and then bringing it back or even having it here with COVID. Two things I'd say to that.

Bob Waters: Correct.

Tim Pickett: With COVID the amount of growing that these growers have done is much less than they could've done before. There's less dispensaries or pharmacies open than would've been open. Had COVID not been the case we would've probably had St. George open by now, because the market would've been more developed a little bit. So there's less product in the state than there would have been if there hadn't been a pandemic, which makes your point more valid, in my opinion, right? Being able to bring it in would been a better thing, a benefit.

Bob Waters: But what triggered me having to break those laws, what triggered me to have to go to Colorado? What triggered me to have to go to Nevada? Ding dong, I'm trying to comply. You have flower? We have indica.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, for five hours.

Bob Waters: Well, I need sativa during the day, I need it every day.

Tim Pickett: Now, should I just say, "Bob, you've been waiting years. I mean, you're just going to have to wait a little bit longer."

Bob Waters: What do you mean waiting years? I wasn't waiting. I was waiting for Utah to catch up with me.

Tim Pickett: See.

Bob Waters: Now I'm compliant.

Tim Pickett: That's right. Right, you want to be-

Bob Waters: Compliant.

Tim Pickett: ... compliant.

Bob Waters: So I subject to your law, I'm compliant, I go to your store. Ding dong, you don't have anything for me. Sorry, why don't you have an opioid?

Tim Pickett: So, the other point-

Bob Waters: What do I do? What do I do?

Tim Pickett: I know, this is true. And the other thing I was going to say about the bringing it in from outside is that when you do that, they have written the statute really protective of the Utah industry, right? Even if federal law changes our statute here says you cannot have cannabis purchased outside of Utah. So it doesn't matter really if federal law changes, it's more restrictive here and that will likely hold. I'd be a good question for JD.

Chris Holifield: Isn't that the same in every state though?

Tim Pickett: I would imagine, right.

Chris Holifield: Technically you shouldn't be crossing the state line with it.

Tim Pickett: No, but if they decriminalize it and they allow transfer of this product between states, that won't matter in Utah because the law is written.

Chris Holifield: Wow, I didn't realize that.

Tim Pickett: That you have to purchase it here.

Bob Waters: Oh, that's a big deal.

Tim Pickett: But that was a smart lobbying, in my opinion.

Chris Holifield: So they knew what they were doing.

Tim Pickett: I mean, if you were somebody who is investing millions of dollars you would've wanted a protection like that in case the feds decriminalize it. So I can see both sides, right?

Bob Waters: Well, if I had a couple of fiduciaries with me I'd tell you we could figure out based on patients what the market cap would be, based on Social Security and disability.

Chris Holifield: We were talking to somebody, I don't know if this podcast has been aired yet, about how originally they were only planning like 6,000 patients. Now we have like-

Tim Pickett: Oh, with Katie Barber.

Chris Holifield: Yeah, 20,000 patients.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, with the state. Yeah, 6,000.

Chris Holifield: It's like let's catch up.

Tim Pickett: In fact, we had talked to Zion about this too.

Chris Holifield: Yeah.

Tim Pickett: That they had really ... There were some projections of 16,000, but when the growers come and talk to us on this podcast, they were told six, 7,000 patients the first year. That's how much product you have to grow for.

Bob Waters: And that's what they're growing for.

Tim Pickett: And really they're probably ... Yeah, I mean, maybe six or 7,000 card holders could, there's enough product out there for them. I don't know, maybe.

Bob Waters: Well, that is a little skewed because there's a secondary market for that product. So, there's a lot of repeat patient user buyers that aren't the users themselves.

Tim Pickett: I suspect that that secondary market is bigger than people are willing to talk about. So the state max you can buy in Utah is four ounces of flower a month. That's only if you're a provider like me, if I say, "Bob, you're my patient, and you can access the state maximum, so four ounces." And I don't do that very often because people don't use that much very often. The average user is not using four ounces a month.

Bob Waters: A think a lot more would like to, it's just expensive.

Tim Pickett: Maybe. Well, there's all kinds of reasons. But people are increasing their purchasing so they can give it away.

Bob Waters: I wish I used less.

Tim Pickett: Right.

Bob Waters: I wish I used less.

Tim Pickett: Yeah. Okay, so you bring up a really good point again there. The people who are actually using that much want to use less. The people who are using an ounce a month, they're buying three. I mean, they're probably not making a profit, and if they are making a profit, boy, it's not very much. But they're giving it or selling it away to their friends and family.

Bob Waters: Well, the secondary market here in Utah is screwed up right now because CBD flower's been introduced into it.

Chris Holifield: Oh, in the black market they're selling CBD flower as regular flower.

Bob Waters: Correct, right.

Chris Holifield: And people are getting ripped off, huh?

Bob Waters: Yeah.

Tim Pickett: Ooh, really.

Bob Waters: Yeah. So what happened is now you go outside the state on the border stores, you can't get anything but nugs the size of eraser heads, tight like rocks. So the growers shrunk, they shrunk the buds into tight little rocks, you can't make a hemp flower like that. Hemp flower is too big, big fat indica buds, right? Those big monster ones they show you on Instagram.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, the Matterhorns. I mean, they're huge.

Bob Waters: Yeah, big things right there. So we know those are no good now. So, they put a big den in indica but sativa was safe. So even the indica now you're getting it small, and they're forcing smaller buds because smaller buds mean safer transactions.

Tim Pickett: Interesting. I don't follow the secondary market much.

Bob Waters: Well, it's hard to spend $24,000 in the store on weed. My wife would frown upon that.

Tim Pickett: Yeah. When you've become a student again as well, right?

Bob Waters: Correct, correct.

Chris Holifield: You're taking some classes?

Bob Waters: I am. I'm a registered student in Utah State University's horticulture program.

Chris Holifield: There you go. You're going to learn how to do some growing?

Bob Waters: I am, I am. I'd love to own a nursery someday.

Tim Pickett: Okay. Was it really the pandemic that kind of ... Did it force you back into this or did it-

Bob Waters: It did. It did. My last opportunity got heavily affected by COVID. I'm not a victim kind of guy, so even though it sucks and it's whatever, it's how do we be productive. Interactions are limited right now and restricted. I felt comfortable using it as an opportunity to take a step back and go to school, study up and learn a new trade.

Tim Pickett: Cool. Are you able to use veteran benefits to help?

Bob Waters: I am, I am. It's voc rehab.

Tim Pickett: That's super cool.

Bob Waters: Yeah. It's beautiful. I love the VA.

Chris Holifield: That's awesome, man.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, that's pretty awesome.

Bob Waters: I love the VA. I love the State of Utah.

Chris Holifield: Yeah.

Bob Waters: So I will risk my livelihood, I'll risk anything to be here.

Chris Holifield: Well, that's what I was wondering. Why not move to Colorado or Oregon or something? It seems like it would be a lot easier.

Tim Pickett: We have people like this all the time, right Chris?

Chris Holifield: I hate saying that, like, "Get out of Utah." But it's like-

Tim Pickett: I know, but this ...

Bob Waters: Well, here's the problem. Utah is a great place.

Chris Holifield: Well, it is.

Tim Pickett: It is.

Chris Holifield: That's what I was excited about.

Tim Pickett: I mean, I think the question ... Chris is asking the question. I would ask the question in this way, like what about Utah makes you stay here? Because everybody stays. There's just so many people who want to be here.

Bob Waters: Yeah.

Tim Pickett: For whatever reason agree or disagree with parts of this cannabis law, or frankly other things.

Bob Waters: Yeah. I think-

Tim Pickett: I mean, the cannabis is not the only thing that forces people to —

Bob Waters: Yeah. I sent a very candid letter to the governor, Governor Herbert. I sent a very candid letter to the governor, outlying a point paper of things that bother me. I brought up a lot of the things we've talked about today. I would say that his response was very eloquent.

Chris Holifield: Oh, so he responded.

Bob Waters: Not him, his office.

Chris Holifield: Okay.

Bob Waters: Let me say it's his office, but from his constituents' office. The response back I got officially was that they recognize that the problem exists with the laws, the program, and that we're working on it. Basically it was saying be patient.

Tim Pickett: Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Chris Holifield: What would help more growers? Do you think that would help the law, or home grow?

Bob Waters: Well, I think unfortunately you either have to decide that you want a retail market or not.

Chris Holifield: Or not, yeah.

Bob Waters: If you got BOGOs, if you got specials, if you got red lights, if you've got vans out front with the flappy little things, if you've got that, that's a retail market in essence.

Chris Holifield: Yeah.

Bob Waters: That's not a medical market, and a true medical market can't support itself.

Chris Holifield: Those are the examples I guess I needed to hear because I didn't realize that. That makes sense to me because I've heard this time and time again. I'm like, well, what is it about it that people aren't considering a medical market? And I see that.

Bob Waters: Yeah, and it's non-supportive. The State of California tried that with the Compassionate Care Act. They tried that, they used that as a springboard, they had patients. That's a standard rule. Okay, we run a cannabis program, what do we do? Okay, let's show six trembling kids and babies, the voters will say yes.

Tim Pickett: Yep.

Bob Waters: And then that happens. Well, in California they used AIDS patients, HIV, cancer, babies. Congratulations, you got a Compassionate Care program, Compassionate Care Act, that rolls out, that transferred into a retail market and the patients were left behind. Now, the medical program in the State of California doesn't exist.

Chris Holifield: There's none.

Bob Waters: It doesn't matter anymore.

Chris Holifield: Yeah.

Bob Waters: The retail market is so beat down by the black market and the prices are very affordable, and it's reasonable. You can go in on any given day and find somewhere where you can get an eight, $10 gram.

Chris Holifield: That'd be nice.

Tim Pickett: Right.

Chris Holifield: Wow.

Tim Pickett: So here-

Bob Waters: There's top-shelf, bottom-shelf, mid-shelf, but that's just the walk-in price. 10 bucks, 12 bucks, no problem.

Tim Pickett: And here we've essentially what you're saying is mixed the retail market and the medical market because we have those specials.

Bob Waters: Yes. Well, let's just say that on a standard price, standard price on a gram is about 15.71. $15.71, that's about standard price. The problem is with cannabis anyone that's been using it for a while, you get deals on volume. If I buy a pound, I'm not going to pay the same per gram price. If I buy an ounce, if I buy a quarter ounce, if I buy an eighth, if I buy a gram. Kind of like, I don't know, but that's just the way the industry's been ran.

Tim Pickett: Yeah.

Bob Waters: And that's the way. So the people we bring in, we import people from other markets, we bring in habits, we bring in styles, we bring in people that are operating multistate operations. Multistate operation trade, do you think they're going to write a SOP on everything for Utah and then an SOP for every different state? So they got standards and things happen, right?

Tim Pickett: Mm-hmm (affirmative).

Bob Waters: But going back to that. Where were we at? The pricing.

Tim Pickett: Yeah.

Bob Waters: Pricing variances, they're just high. Now, if I'm a true patient. Well, let's just say your standard patient in the State of Utah that's on disability, what do they make in a month?

Tim Pickett: Well, it's like $800.

Bob Waters: Let's go big, let's say 1,200.

Tim Pickett: Yeah.

Bob Waters: 1,200 bucks a month, that barely pays their rent. Barely pays the rent. They're already out.

Tim Pickett: That's right, they're already out. This is the conversation that you and I have had many times, is how can we get the cannabis into their hands to reduce the prescription medications that they have to take?

Bob Waters: Correct.

Tim Pickett: This is not about getting cannabis into their hands illegally so they can use it on top of their medications, this is changing their life for the better.

Bob Waters: This is people breaking the law.

Chris Holifield: That don't want to. They don't want to break the law, they just want their medicine.

Bob Waters: They want to be compliant.

Chris Holifield: Yeah.

Bob Waters: They can't afford it because Utah is making enough money. What are they making? $3 on a transaction?

Tim Pickett: Yeah, three bucks on a transaction, but most of the fees that the state makes are-

Bob Waters: Are back end.

Tim Pickett: ... all on the back end not of the front end.

Bob Waters: Right.

Tim Pickett: It's the licensing fees, and the testing fees, the Department of Ag, those testing fees I think are high. I don't know what they are. They're getting their fees somewhere.

Bob Waters: It costs about $5 to put a seed in the ground, right? If you buy it in bulk, let's just say five, 10 bucks to put a seed in the ground. If we were to try and do cost analysis on where is the restrictive on this whole pipeline, where would the restrictive chokehold be, it's going to be between the growers and the state.

Tim Pickett: Yeah.

Bob Waters: That's where the money is at. Okay, that's fine, but then they also limit the amount of growers, so they're limiting their revenue. It's just ...

Chris Holifield: They'll figure it out though.

Bob Waters: It baffles my mind.

Chris Holifield: They'll figure it out, I think. I mean, I want to hope they do.

Tim Pickett: So you and I talked about-

Bob Waters: More square feet. The growers need more, the solution is more square footage.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, and isn't that on the hill right now, 100,000?

Bob Waters: More square footage.

Tim Pickett: More square footage is on the bill right now, and I think there's some pretty hard push to get them more canopy.

Bob Waters: Well, if the deal is if they restrict, if they don't let them export and they gave them all the square footage they need, we'd have enough cannabis.

Tim Pickett: Oh yeah, they'll grow enough, I mean.

Bob Waters: Yeah, they'll grow.

Tim Pickett: Come on, right? Tryke, Zion, Wholesome, Dragonfly.

Chris Holifield: They'll grow.

Tim Pickett: They'll grow as much as we need.

Bob Waters: As much as they can sell.

Tim Pickett: They'll grow as much as they can sell, that's true.

Bob Waters: So are they willing to drop the price to sell more? Man, that sounds like a retail market.

Tim Pickett: It is so true.

Chris Holifield: Have you noticed prices are actually going up since they've opened? Because when they started, when Dragonfly started they were selling an eighth for about 50, 55, and now it's tough to find anything for under 60.

Bob Waters: Oh really?

Chris Holifield: Yeah.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, it's interesting.

Chris Holifield: And it's interesting that-

Bob Waters: I knew they had options before.

Chris Holifield: Yeah.

Bob Waters: And then I came in one time, and you could get ... And I love them.

Chris Holifield: Sure.

Bob Waters: I hate on them a little bit only because they represent something that I have angst with, but them themselves I love them. They're great people, they're trying their best with what they got.

Tim Pickett: They are. To Dragonfly's credit, I met with them, their owners last week, and they really are devoted to quality.

Bob Waters: I believe that 100%.

Tim Pickett: Which is just, I mean, that's a good thing. They really are devoted to quality.

Bob Waters: Their distillate is top-shelf.

Tim Pickett: It is. They don't use anything to cut it down with, it's a big deal to them.

Bob Waters: Yeah.

Tim Pickett: So, how do we get these people ... What's the idea of getting these lower income people into the system if we can't change the law? We've got to have some way for the dispensaries, and these pharmacies, and these growers to offer ... I mean, what have they got? They've got to offer something, I've got to offer something in the clinics. We all essentially have to team up to have a sliding, essentially like a sliding scale program, like a membership program if you're on disability.

Bob Waters: Yeah. I've tried that. I've tried something like that, I wired it up. I had a few people that were interested. Basically what it was is that if you were a member, member of our union.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, the union.

Bob Waters: If you could afford like a monthly fee of say 50 bucks, or maybe we make it income based, right? If you remember that, what we did is we had a partner dispensary and a partner medical provider so that we could bypass some of these fees that are cost restrictive to access to care. Not a lot of interest.

Tim Pickett: The two things I think about are everybody's ... There's a lot of people busy, right? The growers are busy expanding, the pharmacies are busy expanding, just trying to keep their head above water, not above water as far as the financials, but above water as far as the build out, and I've got to open, and I got to see all these patients.

Bob Waters: Yeah. It felt like I had a grower that was like 100% down, right? Or we'd have people that were into it, and it's cool, but overall. Then we're talking to actual patients. I went out and talked to people that are breaking laws right now. They go out and score their $20 in Liberty Park every day, right? I ask them, "Why do you do that?" He's like, "I ain't got 250 bucks."

Tim Pickett: Right.

Bob Waters: And he goes, "But why would I do that? I'm getting this for 20 bucks. How much are you getting what you're getting for? I don't have that money, I can't afford it." It isn't about want to be compliant, they're cost out. They're just cost out, so he's doing his transaction. Sometimes just be able to say, "Come on, just sign up 50 bucks a month. You're paying $20 a day." What a deal.

Tim Pickett: Right, right, what a deal.

Bob Waters: What a deal.

Tim Pickett: You can get an indica, you can get a sativa.

Bob Waters: Yeah.

Tim Pickett: You don't get a ton of choice out on the black market.

Bob Waters: You don't get arrested.

Tim Pickett: You're not going to get a ton of choice in the dispensary because they're going to give you whatever they have.

Bob Waters: Bottom-shelf.

Tim Pickett: Bottom-shelf, but that's what you're getting out on the street probably.

Bob Waters: Yeah.

Tim Pickett: At least half the time.

Bob Waters: Yeah. At least it's clean. At least it's clean and legal, right?

Tim Pickett: Yep.

Bob Waters: Clean and legal. If it was affordable. And I ask them, I say, "If it was the same price, you can go to the store, talk to the nice person behind the counter every day and spend your $20, or you could go spend it in the park in this illegal transaction. Which would you rather do?"

Tim Pickett: Sure.

Bob Waters: They go to the park.

Chris Holifield: Why do you think the State of Utah is afraid of home grow? Why do you think they don't want people growing here?

Tim Pickett: I mean, from a business standpoint I know why the growers don't want people to home grow.

Bob Waters: Oh, I think they do.

Chris Holifield: Yeah, but I mean, really people aren't going to ... I mean, that would be like the grocery store afraid that we have a garden, you know what I mean?

Tim Pickett: That's exactly what I was thinking right now. The farmer's market is booming, and I can grow tomatoes in my garden for free.

Chris Holifield: But you still go.

Tim Pickett: But I still go down to the farmer's market and buy expensive tomatoes frankly. Yeah, that's a good ...

Chris Holifield: I don't know, I'm just curious what-

Tim Pickett: You make a really great point. And I would love to play with it, right? I don't want to grow production.

Chris Holifield: No.

Tim Pickett: But I'm fascinated with growing a home garden, and I would be fascinated with growing a Blue Dream or growing a Pineapple Express, or growing something from a seed that I thought man, you know what? I did this on my own. I understand the process better and then I think I'd appreciate the medicine more.

Chris Holifield: Well, just some way to bring the price down, like you were saying, Bob. I mean, they could even sell us the plant. I better not give them any ideas, right? The State of Utah any ideas, but it just seems like there would be some way that they could still get some money from us, right?

Bob Waters: Yeah, they could track it, because they're already tracking it.

Tim Pickett: Only let the growers be the nursery, right?

Chris Holifield: Yeah, something, I don't know.

Bob Waters: So there's a couple different ways. Probably the easiest way, and it can subsidize it so you're buying a clone from the grower that's tagged, you're just buying one of their plants and you take it home. It's tagged, it's registered. I mean, so there is some restrictions on that, right? Putting your name in there, saying, "Hey, here's my address. I have a cannabis plant. I don't live within a 100 feet from a school." Or whatever legislation.

Tim Pickett: I'm sure they can come up with something.

Bob Waters: Whatever's in there, or you just go check the plant out. You rent a car the way you rent a plant, it's the same deal. You just take it home, that's the easiest way.

Chris Holifield: Yeah.

Bob Waters: The easiest way, but if you want to be like, "No, I want to order my seeds from Amsterdam and I want to be completely au naturel, and I want to pick everything, everything, everything." Fine, then go apply for a tag and be willing to subject yourself to inspection.

Chris Holifield: Sure.

Bob Waters: The inspector comes in. How many plants are you supposed to have in this residence? One. Where is it? Right here. Oh.

Tim Pickett: Good.

Bob Waters: Good. Hey, it looks nice. Smells kind of stinky. Okay, your house is kind of stinky.

Tim Pickett: That's funny.

Bob Waters: I mean, most people don't want their house to the kind of stinky, I don't know.

Chris Holifield: Yeah. You make it sound so easy, Bob.

Tim Pickett: I know, and we've kind of gone down the rabbit hole here. I like this discussion. It seems so reasonable to come up with solutions to some of these things that the government imposes on us.

Bob Waters: Yeah.

Chris Holifield: There is a question I want to ask you, and this could be a big topic, but I think you're the perfect person to ask this. PTSD, that's currently what you use cannabis for, correct?

Bob Waters: Correct.

Chris Holifield: How do you feel about them taking that away from you as a qualifying condition?

Tim Pickett: Yeah, there's some discussion about removing it.

Chris Holifield: I mean, especially we've been talking about VA. I mean, I know that's a big thing used in the VA.

Bob Waters: My job was to end human life, that's counterintuitive to how I think we're wired as humans and causes some clinical issues. That's different from getting hit with a bag of flour and now being afraid to go down aisle five. So, I don't think lawmakers are well versed in what PTSD really is, and I don't think they're qualified to govern it. They should let the governing of medical conditions be left to the medical field, in my opinion.

Chris Holifield: Amen, yeah.

Tim Pickett: There you go.

Chris Holifield: I was just curious because I know we've talked about that probably in the last —

Bob Waters: That's kind of dark, but that's how I feel about it, right? But if I say I got PTSD. I got PTSD, I'm afraid of batteries. I got hit in the head when I was a kid by seven people that hit me with batteries. That's a real condition maybe, right?

Tim Pickett: Right, yeah.

Bob Waters: And I can't disqualify that per se, but I could say this. For me I have reoccurring nightmares. So every night I have these repetitive dreams of doing things that are terrible, in my opinion, and they're there, and it's all night, and I don't sleep, and it's just repeat over, and over, and over again. So, like I said, cannabis was an alternative to my first choice, which was alcohol. If you drink enough you can pass out and you won't dream.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, but one of the benefits of cannabis is it works on the memory centers of the brain and it's ideal for disassociating memories when it's used appropriately.

Bob Waters: Yeah, it's great.

Tim Pickett: It's actually with PTSD there is some interest in studying heavy cannabis use right after an event that is people have a potential to develop a PTSD. So I'd like to see a study that gives heavy cannabis doses, heavy THC doses right after the event, disassociate the memory from the event so that you don't form those connections.

Bob Waters: Amazing. That'd be like a rate.

Tim Pickett: Right, and then you don't have to deal.

Bob Waters: Let's say that was a rate.

Tim Pickett: It's that type of premise. So then you can dose them with heavy THC, you limit the connections that are formed in that immediate period after, and then you can essentially reduce the PTSD trigger later. It's a very interesting treatment theory for cannabis use. I mean, it's not currently —

Bob Waters: That's why we have to get it into the scientist's hands.

Tim Pickett: Exactly.

Bob Waters: More smart people, smarter than me. They need smarter than us. Look, we end up making it kind of cool. We need scientists to take this plant to a different place. That's what I think.

Chris Holifield: You were mentioning Blue Dream as a favorite strain. Is that your all-time favorite strain or what's your all-time favorite strain?

Bob Waters: I use it as a favorite.

Chris Holifield: Okay.

Bob Waters: Through the years though I look more for ... And because it's like what are you really getting, right? Hey I'm selling you some Acapulco Gold. Yeah, sure you are.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, sure.

Bob Waters: I've seen that. No, you're not, whatever.

Tim Pickett: Yeah.

Bob Waters: But using the Blue Dream analogy or the specific profile, it comes down to that. What am I looking for in terpenes? What qualities in the terpenes? What quality in the plant that's going to be bringing these certain effect? And as we know, each strain carries these different levels and concentrations of different chemicals, and it comes down to chemicals. Blue Dream, it makes me feel good. It makes me comfortable.

Chris Holifield: Sure.

Bob Waters: And I love it, but I can find some of those similar effects in a different strain.

Chris Holifield: Just a personal favorite.

Bob Waters: Yeah. So that's how I feel about that.

Chris Holifield: Just curious. It's something we ask people.

Tim Pickett: It's a favorite question of ours.

Chris Holifield: Yeah.

Tim Pickett: What's your favorite strain? Well, this has been a great conversation.

Chris Holifield: Yeah. I mean, we could probably keep going. I don't know, what other topics should we cover with you, Bob? I don't know.

Bob Waters: I smoked a joint with Eazy-E's kid.

Tim Pickett: Eazy-E!

Chris Holifield: Let's talk about that. I'm a fan of the Eazy-E guy.

Bob Waters: You remember because it started with I told you why I got involved in cannabis.

Chris Holifield: Yeah, yeah.

Bob Waters: I got involved in cannabis because I wanted to have an opportunity to smoke a joint with-

Chris Holifield: Tommy Chong.

Bob Waters: Well, not Tommy Chong, it was Dr. Dre.

Chris Holifield: Oh, Dr. Dre.

Tim Pickett: Oh yeah, that's right. It was Dr. Dre.

Bob Waters: Yeah, I did, because I like gangster rap. I'm a gangster rap fan.

Chris Holifield: I love it.

Bob Waters: Any who. Where else, if you're a fan of gangster rap, where else or who else would you rather be smoking a blunt with-

Chris Holifield: Than Dr. Dre.

Bob Waters: Or Dr. Dre. Well, Eazy-E.

Chris Holifield: Eazy-E.

Tim Pickett: Eazy-E is pretty good.

Bob Waters: Eazy-E rest in peace, right? Eazy-E's son.

Chris Holifield: So how did you talk ... How did you get connected?

Tim Pickett: That's kind of cool.

Chris Holifield: How did you find out he was his son? I mean, what-

Tim Pickett: It's so funny. I could probably recite some of those songs from when I was a kid, Eazy-E.

Bob Waters: It's beautiful. Well, I had the luxury of being introduced to Lil Eazy-E, and E3, and Big A. I got introduced to them through a company called Nugo. I had the opportunity to work with them for about six months. It's a tech company, and they're part of Rich & Ruthless Records. They were doing work together at the time. I put together a magazine for them.

Chris Holifield: Very cool.

Bob Waters: It was all great stuff, they're a great company. Good people, and it was a wonderful experience. It really was cool.

Tim Pickett: That's cool.

Bob Waters: That's the story of my life. I survived a volcanic eruption, I've been in a volcanic eruption.

Chris Holifield: Like a real one.

Bob Waters: Like a real one.

Chris Holifield: A real volcano, not the volcano that you smoke out of.

Bob Waters: No, no. No vaporizer. No, we could go for days, but that's funny.

Tim Pickett: Eazy-E, Chong.

Chris Holifield: Dude, that is so cool. I mean, I would ask you, I mean, do you want to get involved more in the industry at all or are you kind of happy the way it is what you're doing right now just as a patient or what? Where do you see yourself going with all of this?

Bob Waters: Well, but first and foremost obviously I want to home grow, some type of home grow open up. I'm not beyond it being very restrictive because I think that there's value, there's a connection and value with growing your own food. Your own medicine is your own crop, your own, there's a value to that. I think that's really tied to a right that I should have. I think that's being a little too restrictive. It can be ruled, it can be governed. Other states are doing it, it's not that hard. They're not going to lose money either. Most people don't want a stinky plant growing in their house.

Tim Pickett: No.

Bob Waters: And even in the backyard, they can ... It's very aromatic, right? I enjoy it, but not everyone is situated, or if I'm next to a church, you don't want somebody growing 30 plants on their backyard right next to a schoolyard.

Chris Holifield: Yeah.

Bob Waters: You don't want that. So it needs to be controlled because humans need to be controlled unfortunately. That seems to be the case anyways. So just going back to that, that's something I'd like to see something.

Chris Holifield: Yeah.

Bob Waters: Home grow, that's important to me.

Chris Holifield: Any other questions for him, Tim, or should we wrap this episode up?

Tim Pickett: Not right now. We'll bring you back around.

Chris Holifield: Yeah.

Tim Pickett: When the laws change, Bob.

Chris Holifield: Yeah, I mean, any final words?

Tim Pickett: And when the union gets up and running.

Bob Waters: If anyone ... We'll see. There's a Cannabis Patient Union, it's on Instagram. People can find it if they want to follow.

Tim Pickett: Is it Utah Cannabis Patients Union?

Bob Waters: No, just cannabis patient.

Chris Holifield: On Instagram you said?

Tim Pickett: Cannabis Patient Union.

Bob Waters: Just follow me.

Chris Holifield: That's how people can get ahold of you too if they wanted, right?

Bob Waters: Yeah.

Chris Holifield: Okay.

Bob Waters: Yeah.

Chris Holifield: Okay.

Bob Waters: Absolutely. And we'll see, we'll see what happens. People have to be willing to register, people have to be willing to partake. It's going to take some early adapters I think initially, and some people willing to risk taking some chances. I unfortunately think that the lack of interest is going to be from the legislative side.

Tim Pickett: Yeah.

Bob Waters: They'll shut us down. We're creating an insurance company.

Tim Pickett: Essentially yeah, it's what the union would do with this membership type program and everybody involved.

Bob Waters: Yeah. So that's why I think it just came down to lack of interest.

Tim Pickett: What's your handle on Instagram?

Bob Waters: Bob's 420 world.

Tim Pickett: Bob's 420 world.

Chris Holifield: Oh, that's you. I know you. I follow you.

Bob Waters: Yes, that's me.

Chris Holifield: Bob's 420, that's you.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, oh yeah. Absolutely.

Chris Holifield: Okay, okay, okay. Well, it's good to meet you.

Bob Waters: Hi, a pleasure.

Chris Holifield: It's so cool. Yeah, so reach out to Bob, get in touch with him.

Bob Waters: Yeah, please do.

Tim Pickett: Yeah.

Chris Holifield: Let him know you heard him on Utah in the Weeds. Let him know you heard this episode.

Bob Waters: Absolutely will, and I've been a little lazy to be truthful. We've been distracted by afraid of dying from COVID. I got to focus a little more on it.

Chris Holifield: Yeah, yeah.

Bob Waters: And I'll put a push and let people know about the podcast here. I think this is great, and then we'll see if we get some people interested we can move forward. I've had some interest from the growers. I've had-

Tim Pickett: I mean, we're definitely interested and we have locations, a lot of places, going to St. George, going to ... We'll be in the areas where people need the medical side of it and the recommendations, and the talking to people like what they could try. All of that medical and education side we are 100% onboard for to help with that system, because I agree. I agree that revenue is fuel.

Bob Waters: Oh, let's get together because I also want to make sure that we're protecting you and what you've built.

Tim Pickett: Right, right.

Bob Waters: You've done some great stuff here.

Tim Pickett: Well, like you said in the very, very beginning. I mean, revenue is fuel, and you have to have fuel or else you can't keep the lights.

Bob Waters: That's correct.

Tim Pickett: Right?

Bob Waters: That's absolutely correct.

Tim Pickett: But there is a growing number of people in this state who need help, right?

Bob Waters: Well, let's do it. Let's help them.

Chris Holifield: Let's do it, guys. Really quick. I know we mentioned at the beginning how people get ahold of you Tim, but let's run down that list real fast.

Tim Pickett: Really just utahmarijuana.org/podcast, that's where the podcast lives. If you need to get ahold of us, utahmarijuana.org, that's the best place to get ahold of me.

Chris Holifield: And reach out to either Tim or myself if you're interested in coming on the podcast, patients, doctors, growers, whatever. If you're involved at all in the industry, even if you've never been on a podcast, right?

Tim Pickett: Oh yeah.

Chris Holifield: Most of the people that come through, I'm sure Bob this is your first time coming on a podcast no, or you've been on a podcast?

Bob Waters: No, this is my first time being on a podcast.

Chris Holifield: You are a pro, man.

Bob Waters: Yeah. I was on Money TV once.

Chris Holifield: Okay, okay.

Bob Waters: I had a suit and tie, you never would've recognized me.

Tim Pickett: So funny.

Chris Holifield: So reach out, leave a review, and then go listen to my other podcast, I Am Salt Lake, and then everybody will be happy.

Tim Pickett: All right, everybody.

Bob Waters: I Am Salt Lake, I know that. I know that.

Tim Pickett: Thanks Bob.

Bob Waters: All right, you're welcome.

Tim Pickett: Stay safe out there everybody.

Bob Waters: Thank you.

What to Expect in this Episode

Cannabis patient Justin Wright is your typical family man. He goes to work, earns a paycheck, and loves his wife and son. He uses cannabis to manage chronic pain that lingers as a result of injuries sustained in a 2001 bike accident. His conversation with Tim and Chris in episode 44 of Utah in the Weeds offers a good look into the life of the average Utah cannabis patient.

Like so many others, Wright was afraid to try Medical Cannabis due to his experience growing up in the late 1980s and early 90s. But he eventually reached the point where managing his chronic pain with ibuprofen wasn't cutting it. [02:52] The pain was making him irritable. It was harming his family life. To Wright's surprise, his mother recommended he see a QMP about starting Medical Cannabis.

Wright has been a steady user for a year now. Throughout the podcast, he talked about the various strains he uses and how he takes them. [08:19] He also discussed tolerance with Tim and Chris. His doctor educated him on the issue; he learned more about it through his own research. He now utilizes a monthly 72-hour fast to control his tolerance. [16:44]

Throughout the podcast, both Tim and Chris were impressed by Wright's attitude toward Medical Cannabis. They asked him about how it helps him at work. [30:04] They talked about how his family life has improved since he started using. [14:56] The trio even covered the sensitive topic of using at home when children are present. [32:58]

Episode 44 is a fascinating discussion that would benefit anyone who wants to learn what Medical Cannabis is like for the average patient. As a family man and software engineer in his late 30s, Justin Wright is an excellent example of your average patient using Medical Cannabis to relieve chronic pain.

Resources in This Episode

Podcast Transcript

Chris Holified: All right. Let's welcome everybody out today to a brand new episode of Utah in the Weeds. This is episode 44 and my name is Chris Holifield.

Tim Pickett: And I'm Tim Pickett, a medical cannabis expert with Utahmarijuana.org. And you can find our podcast at utahmarijuana.org/podcast. Today, Chris, we talk to Justin Wright, a cannabis patient, super great conversation. And what struck me was, he's really just a family man, a software developer, and he talks a lot about finding your way to cannabis from traditional medicine. It was just a good conversation.

Chris Holified: What I really liked is the advice he gave to people that might be on the fence of trying cannabis. Talks about the importance of just at least giving it a try. He talks about tolerance, which is something.

Tim Pickett: Yeah. He talks a lot about how he was very concerned about tolerance and overusing cannabis and what his program is like to keep his tolerance low and keep his costs down. And you know what? A shout out to Corey Anden, Dr. Anden up in Ogden, it sounds like she is his physician and did a great job at educating him. Anyway, I'm excited for people to listen to this interview.

Chris Holified: Yeah. And he's a listener of the podcast. So that was fun to bring a listener on the podcast and kind of hear what they had to say about it. So give this podcast episode a listen, reach out to Tim, Utahmarijuana.org, if you have any questions about cannabis, I know the website, you guys got lots of blog articles there as well. And then you can listen to my other podcast, I am Salt Lake at, Iamsaltlake.com, but call our voicemail number up as well, (385) 215-9557. That is the Utah in the Weeds voicemail number. We would love it if you called in, maybe you have a question about cannabis. Maybe you want to know when a new a pharmacy is opening up. Maybe you want to know where Tim shops and buys all of his cool glasses. I don't know.

Tim Pickett: That's right. Or get some swag, some Utah in the Weeds swag.

Chris Holified: Oh yeah, there we go. There we go. I don't have anything else to say about Justin. Should we jump into the conversation?

Tim Pickett: Yeah, Justin Wright everybody.

Chris Holified: All right. Enjoy the conversation.

...

Justin Wright: It's like I told my wife I'm going to be on a podcast because I smoke pot and she was like, that's awesome. Well, I don't smoke it.

Tim Pickett: That's a really good place to start. I told my wife, I was going to be on the podcast because I smoke pot.

Chris Holified: Well, should we start with her or should we start right at the beginning of what got you into — The levels sound good.

Justin Wright: Sure.

Chris Holified: We're ready to rock and roll here. So let's start right with you. When did you get introduced to cannabis for the first time? Were you younger? Was it recreational or was it medicine?

Justin Wright: So I experimented once or twice in high school, didn't really have a good experience. So I just kind of moved from that point. It wasn't until 2019, November 2019 when I was just about had it with my issues. I suffer from chronic neck pain, from a bike accident back in 2001 and I landed headfirst and my helmet saved my life. So after that point, my life was never the same. It always kind of, I remember I was listening to Dave Matthews, Busted Stuff album for the first time I got out of my bed and I felt crooked, it was the most gnarliest feeling. Something feels off and my eyes were cloudy and my mom, she correlated to the bike accident. So from a young age, from 22 and stuff, I was in and out of chiropractors, massage therapists, physical therapy, all that kind of stuff. And when I became a college student, you're young, so I didn't really take it too serious. I was just popping ibuprofen all the time. And I got married and things were good, but we noticed our relationship was just degrading and I was always irritated.

Chris Holified: Your relationship with your wife?

Justin Wright: Yeah. I would snap and get irritated. After my 30s, that's when we noticed that something was off with me. We know now that I probably was just dealing with pain, your body becomes so accustomed to just dealing with.

Chris Holified: It becomes normal.

Justin Wright: Yeah, it becomes normal. And I would wake up in the morning and I feel okay some of the times. And then you'd go throughout the day and just sitting, writing code or doing whatever. By the end of the day, all I'm doing is just laying on a neck roller playing video games trying to relieve pressure from my neck. And so by 2019 November, I about hadn't, just venting to my mom about how bad this sucks. And she was the one that poked me. She was like, I was browsing around with cannabis and I noticed that there was this Dr. Anden in Ogden, I think you should go check her out. And that's what started it. So I never even entertained the thought of using cannabis. And so I started researching it and I was skeptical. My whole impression that it was a kid of the 90s. So there was propaganda, marijuana is going to make you dumb. It's going to screw you up for life.

Tim Pickett: I still have that pamphlet.

Chris Holified: You're going to be doing heroin.

Tim Pickett: How old are you?

Justin Wright: I'll be 39 this month.

Chris Holified: So you say similar to us.

Tim Pickett: Similar high school stuff. I still have the pamphlet that my kids are going to be deformed. It's going to be the monster.

Justin Wright: The Harold and Kumar movies. Marijuana kills. And they're just laughing. After my first time using cannabis, I could finally relate to that movie because I'm like, yeah, dude, I was lied to as a child.

Chris Holified: Don't you feel so upset after you've been lied to, especially with cannabis. I'm like, come on man. This is what I've been lied to?

Tim Pickett: Of all the things you could lie to me about, this is what you chose?

Justin Wright: It was night and day difference the first time I tried it, but yeah, so I explored it. I set up an appointment and I went to go see her in January 2020. And let me tell you, that was a life changing event because COVID just hit. And once COVID hit, I couldn't go to a chiropractor. I couldn't go to a massage therapist. I was developing digestive problems because I was taking so much ibuprofen. My doctor I was seeing when I mentioned maybe looking into medical cannabis and stuff, she was like, Oh no, just drink milk and you'll be fine with ibuprofen and stuff. And at that point I was like, really?

Tim Pickett: That's not good advice.

Justin Wright: Yeah, man. So I went to a Dr. Anden and she was like an angel. Her whole entire staff was very professional. And I had no idea what to expect. You're going to a weed doctor or something.

Chris Holified: Oh, she's great.

Tim Pickett: She's great. And her office is nice. It's in a professional building. And she's been doing physical rehab medicine for a long, long time.

Justin Wright: Yes. There was nothing but positive experience visiting her for the first time. And she really takes care of her patients throughout the whole entire Utah laws changing and everything like that. I know it's been really hectic on her staff and patients alone not knowing what's going on. And so it was really good to kind of feel I was under her wing kind of thing. And I wasn't bad for using this. And she actually teaches her patients how to use it correctly. When I went in there, I'm like, so do I smoke it because to be honest with you, I don't really like smoking marijuana. It has a really harsh vape that burns my throat and they instructed all types of different forms of how to use it, how much that kind of stuff. And so I went to Wendover right after her visit and went shopping and then came home.

Justin Wright: And I remember I tried, what strain was it? It was a cart. It was a vape cart. And it was blue dream. And immediately when I did that, it felt like I was 20 years old again. And I was standing up straight and it was like, because sometimes you'd go to a chiropractor and they adjust you in everything and you feel good afterwards, the pressure goes away and everything, but you get right back in your car and you turn the wrong way or something and your bones go. And then you're like, wow, 60 bucks down the drain. Here I'm paying 60 bucks for 3.5 grams. And it lasts me for a week and a half, two weeks.

Chris Holified: Oh, wow. You can get it to last you a while.

Justin Wright: So after Dr. Anden I started YouTube and stuff. And I found out Dynavap. And although Utah law is very strict on combustion and you can't use flames. Dynavap came out with this little induction electric heater that you can use with the Dynavap pens. And so that's become my daily driver because I can set that down to 0.05 grams per bowl, and I can get three or four charges out of that and totally extract so much out of my herb. It's awesome. And it doesn't get you, sometimes man, I've used the tiny mite and one hit with that thing, it was like, it sent me, I was couch locked but with this micro dosing, I feel like I'm really productive.

Chris Holified: Nice. Do you have a favorite strain or what are you enjoying?

Justin Wright: Yeah dude. So I tend to try to just buy a variety of strains because I noticed that your body builds up tolerance to different strains over time. So that's why I've always been hesitant to buy one ounce of just one strain or something. So I tried one that I got in Wendover called Connor's Comfort, and I think it's almost borderline of a type two because it has a very high CBD, almost 1:1 ratio. And that kind of got me experimenting with, I got some CBD from a farm up in Oregon. What are they called? Shoot.

Chris Holified: It doesn't matter.

Justin Wright: Anyways. So I started blending some CBD in with the THC to kind of remove the heady effects sometimes. But Connor's Comfort's a really good strain. Right now, I'm really digging White 99 that I got in Beehive pharmacy. And then they also have the purple Afghan Kush. Those two strains are really good. The only other strain that really stands out that I really liked was lemon cake that I got in Wendover. That one was cool.

Chris Holified: So you got your license in November and then pharmacies started opening up here in March. Well, Dragonfly did. Have you found it to be pretty easy to get stuff here locally at the pharmacies?

Justin Wright: No, not at all. Several times I went up to Dragonfly and all they had was Carts and I stopped using Carts because there was a scare. So I started educating myself. And while I do believe that they're safe, when you get them from Dragonfly Wellness or a reputable medical cannabis dispensary. I didn't like how it felt in my lungs. I like to run. And so I noticed that I'd get pain in my lungs. So I stopped using those right away for me. And I've basically been just using dry flower.

Tim Pickett: Yeah. The Carts are high temp. They are high temp, more higher temperature than vaporizing flour. And then the additives. We just talked to Kyle and talking about the additives to the Carts and how they can build up in your lungs and cause some trouble. Has the lack of available flower gotten better? Do you feel like?

Justin Wright: Sorry. I've totally specified on the original question.

Chris Holified: No, I was just curious if you were finding hard to find flower.

Justin Wright: For all of 2020, it was a challenge. It was a race to the dispensary, who could get there first to get their flower. So I just basically said, you know what? Dr. Anden says, cool, if I go to Wendover. So I kind of avoided the dispensary's for almost six months here. And I just made runs to Wendover, Deep Roots Harvest, really nice dispensary. And they took care of me. But now that these last two times I hit up Beehive pharmacy.

Tim Pickett: They're great.

Justin Wright: Yeah. They're great.

Tim Pickett: I like the vibe down there. It just, I don't know. I like Dragonfly, I like them all. But Beehive definitely is one of my favorites.

Justin Wright: Dragonflies Sunday driver is —

Tim Pickett: It's the favorite of 2020.

Justin Wright: I always have to put in Beatles and listen to that. But Beehive pharmacy, I think it's Beehive and Dragonfly are my two go-tos.

Chris Holified: And I was going to say, which one is your main, but I guess you because you probably have a card obviously letters aren't totally, I mean, you can go anywhere now, that's the beautiful thing.

Justin Wright: We just moved up to this Millcreek area six months ago. And so it's really easy to get to either one of those right now.

Chris Holified: You moved out from Utah County, right?

Justin Wright: Yeah.

Chris Holified: Was that, was that tough being a cannabis user in Utah County?

Justin Wright: It was a secret.

Chris Holified: It'd be a secret most places, I guess. I mean, sadly, but I was just curious if you ran into any obstacles in Utah County, even though, we've talked about there's more patients in Utah County.

Justin Wright: There are, there still are more patients in Utah County than there are here.

Tim Pickett: As far as legal cannabis users.

Justin Wright: As far as legal cannabis users. Yeah. So I didn't really have much of an issue because at that time I was just going to Wendover. So I'd just wake up on a Friday or Saturday morning and go and then come back. And my wonderful neighbors never even knew. I was just this little.

Chris Holified: And that's the way it should be, private anyway.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, you're just this family man.

Justin Wright: It's until people can actually throw away all of the negative vibes that are associated with this, that I feel like we're the ones that have to be in the closet. It's kind of weird. I was talking to someone at Dr. Anden's office. I remember having this conversation. I can't remember who, but she said we shouldn't have to be ashamed to use the flower. We should be more embarrassed if we're using opioids or some kind of prescribed medicine. It's kind of funny, people talk about using opioids like it's no big deal.

Tim Pickett: You make a really good point. I can open a pill bottle. I can open a prescription pill bottle anywhere.

Justin Wright: And use it at work.

Tim Pickett: Yep. And use it at work. And there's really, nobody's going to look down on me for whatever prescription medication I have. I open a little jar of a cannabis flower, you can smell it. And then instantly, everybody knows and you just —

Chris Holified: Oh, Tim's got weed.

Tim Pickett: Tim is grinding his weed.

Justin Wright: Yup. And then there's the push of, I bet he's a really kind of slacker kind of.

Tim Pickett: Right. Then, Oh, well for the next few hours, you're going to be out. Right. You can't work. You can't function. You're just going to be lazy. Do you find that with your family?

Chris Holified: Yeah. Let's talk about family life.

Tim Pickett: What's the family life?

Justin Wright: My marriage has never been better. 2020, I get it, it was not a good year. Lots of horrible things. Lots of unpredictable things happened, but on a personal level being quarantined. I have a friend that's a lawyer and he said his divorce rates, his divorce clients have just skyrocketed this year. But me and my wife we're just little lovebirds because my kid will basically be like, dad, you're getting kind of cranky. I think you need to go take some medicine and I'll go take a couple puffs here or there. And we're just super chill. I can't express how grateful I am for cannabis, because I couldn't go to any other type of medical treatment for the longest time. And it's also helped keep our house's sanity, because I'm not irritated.

Tim Pickett: It sounds like you had almost a personality change because of the chronic pain.

Justin Wright: Yeah. So I kept on telling my wife because we almost got divorced a couple of times in our marriage and I told her I'm like, I remember just being the nice person. I don't remember ever fighting this much. This is not me. And I feel like the true me has come through with using cannabis in moderation.

Chris Holified: So you feel it's managing your pain then? Is that kind of what you're?

Justin Wright: Very much so. It's the best out of anything I've tried for the last 10 years. No, I'm sorry. 20, Oh my gosh I'm old. For the last 18 years, it's probably been the number one most effective medicine. It's also helped clear up all my digestive problems that ibuprofen, I'm not sure if I should say that.

Chris Holified: No, you sound like you're dealing with some of the similar stuff I have. I took a lot of ibuprofen and stuff and it just damaged my gut, man. It just tore it up, man.

Justin Wright: It's not good. But that has cleared up and my neck pain has cleared up. I have more patience, I feel like I'm way more productive. I'm worried about tolerance. So family life, this is something that I did notice and also, Oh, he just smoked a bowl or vaped a bowl, he's going to be lazy. That's not true. I do a 72 hour fast each month and I just use CBD.

Chris Holified: I tried, I remember reading that when you submitted to come on the podcast, I should be doing something like this. So how do you? Do you just pick three days you take off?

Justin Wright: Yeah. Cascadia Blooms, that's the company. I have to be careful, I've tried different CBD products and nothing really ever to be honest with you, I don't feel a thing with CBD, but Cascadia Bloom gives you actual nugs, like actual flowers of sour space, candy, or Hawaiian haze or whatever. And when you vape that CBD flower, you actually, I call it diet weed because it lasts for about 15 minutes to 30 minutes, if you're lucky. And then the pain's right back there. So for the 72 hours, man, I am probably having quite a few bowls a day of CBD.

Tim Pickett: Do you find that you lower your tolerance at the time or are you able to really just stay at the same use that you were before?

Justin Wright: I think the tolerance is slowly, still building up. I think if I took, because I've been using cannabis now every day for a year. So I think when I first had a couple of puffs, I felt like Towelie from South Park. Oh man, where am I?

Chris Holified: If that felt like Towelie from South Park then you were good.

Justin Wright: But now I have 0.1 grams and it's like, I'm very relaxed. I'm not in pain, but it's not like I got that heady, pink eye, I have no idea what's going on kind of.

Tim Pickett: We talk about this once in a while, but this is important for people to understand that you need some tolerance or else you don't function. If you're going to be a chronic cannabis user, which is okay, because we have chronic pain, then you have to build up enough tolerance to support the habit. To be able to function with the therapy.

Justin Wright: I think it took about six months. I used to only have to be able to take one or two puffs. And then at that time I just had a mighty and so I'd have to quickly empty the chamber out otherwise it's just going to bake your herb. But going back to the CBD thing, I would notice that I'd get nothing done at night. So for that 72 hour fast, you think, Oh, I might not because sometimes you still get caught off guard and you'll get couch locked. And that's just the name of the game I call it. And it's not that bad. I just play Smash Bros with my son.

Tim Pickett: Or you become a really good listener.

Justin Wright: Yes. Oh my gosh. I feel like I listened to my kid so much better now because let's face it. I'm 39, he's 10. There's not much you can have in-depth conversation with a ten-year-old. But when I'm using marijuana and he's talking about Steve and Minecraft, I'm all there.

Chris Holified: This is the most exciting thing ever.

Tim Pickett: You're saying all the things I'm thinking when I'm in my house.

Justin Wright: Yeah. But on the CBD fast, I'm doing everything I can not to get irritated because I do know that while they say there is no long-term or bad effects with marijuana when I'm off, it seems like I am a little bit more irritable, but that's about it. I'm not going through withdrawals. It's not like, Oh man, I got to take a hit. It's more like, I really love cheeseburgers and I would like a cheeseburger right now, but there's none at home so what if? I don't get anything done. I'm on the neck roller every night when I'm not on marijuana.

Chris Holified: So why do you take a break then? Why not just keep going and just build that tolerance up?

Justin Wright: Well, one thing is, Dr. Anden's, what do you call the doctor that's the assistant to the doctor? I forgot what...

Tim Pickett: Careful here. Careful, that's me. It's the PA.

Justin Wright: Oh, I'm so sorry. I'm bad with —

Chris Holified: No, you're going to give this guy a heart attack. He's like, shit.

Tim Pickett: You're totally fine. So she has a PA who works with her up at our clinic now? And she's great?

Justin Wright: Yes.

Tim Pickett: And she uses Dr. Sulak from healer.com. They have a lot and I know Corey quite well. They have a tolerance breaking program, that Dr. Sulak teaches in his healer.com course. And it's, take two days off, then start low. And she also has a really great staff up there in her office.

Justin Wright: So I was doing a week before I went back for my six month evaluation and she's like, don't do a week. You're just going to be torturing yourself.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, a week is a little too far.

Justin Wright: They said 48 hours is good. But then she said, if you can get 72 in, it's exponentially different. And I do notice a difference. So after the 72 hours, it's like, I just need a small bowl for my Dynavap and I am good. But then the next day, we're kind of getting back into.

Tim Pickett: Yeah. You build up a tolerance to the side effects pretty quick, especially because you've had all of this. All of the receptors in your body, they're all jive and they're ready to go. They know exactly what you're giving them. And so, this is a great conversation because 72 hours a month is probably ideal. I don't think most people could do that. In your situation where you have a real chronic pain issue and you need the THC to feel better.

Justin Wright: Sometimes just between you and me, my wife will be like, why don't you just do 48 hours or 24 hours.

Chris Holified: She's getting a motel room for those 72 hours.

Tim Pickett: Sulak, he talks about 48 hours and then starting back in, but really that's only once. We talk in my clinics about once a quarter. Doing 48 hours fasting and then starting back with low doses to try to reevaluate what your therapeutic dose would be. But everybody does it a little different and simplifying it to 72 hours sounds like, I mean, it's ideal. It's pretty cool. You do get most of the benefit over the first 48 as far as the receptor activity.

Justin Wright: I would agree with you because sometimes I can't make it to 72.

Tim Pickett: And then you can kind of go back and you can use the same amount. I find it really interesting that you've been doing this here. In other states, they call it THC creep where you increase your THC levels, the intake over time. And it's multiple factors, the access to the dispensaries, your use. You're just going to tend to use more.

Chris Holified: Once you're sitting there.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, once you're sitting there, one more hit. I'm not doing anything this afternoon, so maybe a couple more hits.

Justin Wright: Then you have to ask yourself the question, am I using it for medicine? Or I'm using it for recreational and I'm guilty. It's tempting. There's times where you're like, Oh man, it's Friday evening. I'll take my medicine before bed, but then you stay up till whatever watching Netflix and then it wears off and you're like, I guess I need to take some more.

Tim Pickett: And we choose strains based on not just pain control, but what you get from the plant. That experience, don't we?

Chris Holified: Sure.

Justin Wright: Yes.

Tim Pickett: You were talking about strains, your favorite strains. And you're like, Oh.

Justin Wright: Yeah. I go on Hytiva all the time. And I'll find out what's so special about this strain. And it's exciting. I just tried one called lime marshmallow. And for once in my life I love that strain because it actually decreases my hunger. I don't get the munchies with that one. And I can't tell you the worst is the munchies. That's the worst side effect of all.

Tim Pickett: Really? You're a super skinny guy.

Justin Wright: Yeah. But I exercise like a beast. And plus with taking cannabis, it's allowed me to do sports that I couldn't use to be able to do. So I'm back into skateboarding and snowboarding and running.

Tim Pickett: Did you run a lot without cannabis?

Justin Wright: Off and on, but there's times where I just couldn't hack it. It was just like pounding into the pressure in my neck and my eyes. And I was just like, no, thank you.

Tim Pickett: Do you run now? Do you use cannabis when you run?

Justin Wright: Yes. I find that not only does it help with my neck, but I used to get runner's knee where it might make pain, which just throb in my left knee. I have not had that for a year.

Chris Holified: That's awesome.

Justin Wright: So take that as you wish.

Tim Pickett: Cannabis is a sports enhancing medication. When it comes to runners, especially right?

Chris Holified: Lifting weights too is nice. Before you go lift a little weight, boom.

Justin Wright: And it just puts you in the zone.

Tim Pickett: Right. You're concentrating on what's going on.

Justin Wright: Oh yeah.

Tim Pickett: You're a little thirsty. So you're a little bit more hydrated when you run, which is nice.

Chris Holified: Tell us about this blog you do. You started this blog, which is really cool. I haven't had a lot of chance to read everything on there, but I think it's cool that you started this.

Justin Wright: That's okay. So back in Utah County, I really couldn't talk to anybody. And when you take cannabis, I get kind of rambly. If you notice, when I filled out your form, it was just like.

Chris Holified: It was great though man. Because it gives us information to work with.

Justin Wright: Oh, cool. My wife's like, why don't you start a blog and so I did. I'm not really good at making movies or editing that kind of stuff. And I know people don't really read blogs that much anymore, but it gave me an outlet. And so it was very healthy during COVID too. And so I started blogging my whole entire experience. And then I started getting into blogging about the different strains. And I think I'm going to take that blog and try to turn it into an online comic with me in a kind of a fictional setting, because I also like to draw. I'm a software developer by nature, but I have this passion for the arts. And so I think it's a healthy outlet because there's not that many people to talk about the wonders of cannabis with.

Chris Holified: I could imagine, I've actually had this discussion with my wife because my wife's the same way. She's like, I want to connect with all these people but it's hard because you can't really just go out onto your public Facebook and just blast it out because you know, I mean, you can't.

Tim Pickett: We all essentially live in Utah County.

Chris Holified: I don't think any state. I think any state you're going to run into the same problem. I mean, even in California where it's full adult recreational, I'm sure you're still going to get into a little bit of problems of going online, but you want to find your tribe. You want to find your people that you can talk with that are dealing with this stuff that you're dealing with. Had people reached out to you at all?

Justin Wright: I've had three people reach out to me and ask, how did I get started? This was at the very beginning, since then, not so much. But it was really great to interact with those people. Some of them had actual yes, I have chronic pain. And I know that almost sometimes people say that's a cop-out symptom to use with this, but hearing some other people's life stories was very humbling. And I was like, Oh man, cannabis can totally help these people.

Chris Holified: Sure. But do you want to get on the highest mountain and tell everybody about it? You're like, I should and then you're like, I can't, and it's the worst.

Justin Wright: That's why to be invited on this podcast was such a dream come true. I get to talk with two cool guys about cannabis for once in this, it's therapy.

Tim Pickett: You've been listening to the podcast too for a while, right?

Justin Wright: Yeah.

Tim Pickett: How did you find it? How did you find the podcast?

Justin Wright: How did I find the podcast? I was honestly just, my Instagram feed for my blog is just filled with all kinds of different cannabis, whatever. And I think it just popped up on my home screen one day, Utah in the Weeds. I'm like, that's got to be cannabis. And so I clicked on it and I found out it's a podcast and then I searched and then I found out I was looking so I subscribed to it on Google's podcasts. And then I saw the one that you guys interviewed Dr. Anden. I'm like, I got to listen to that. And then I was hooked. And so, yeah. And then you also did I think Cole Fullmer, Salt Baked City. And there's a few other, there was another patient that you were talking to and he was experimenting with CBD.

Chris Holified: His name was Zack. Was it Zach King?

Justin Wright: Yeah.

Chris Holified: He's in a little bit mixing and all that.

Tim Pickett: I'm always fascinated when people do this because we talk about it all the time in clinic with patients and how you can really get into experimenting, but we tend to spend a lot of time just on the basics. How to find a dose, how to build up a tolerance frankly, is a big discussion.

Chris Holified: Yeah, people use it and then they forget. They're like you in high school, you just don't have a good experience, get a little paranoid. You don't feel good. You're dizzy.

Justin Wright: First, you don't know that cannabis was coming from.

Chris Holified: Part is a lot of the black market stuff. I mean, it could be mold. It could be, you don't know what the —

Tim Pickett: It could have pesticides.

Chris Holified: And that causes, I mean, you were mentioning, GI problems. Mold and stuff like that can cause a lot of stuff for people because I deal with a lot of the same stuff. Can we talk a little bit about the software you develop? What's your job like?

Justin Wright: Oh yeah. We can talk about that. So, I've done everything from e-commerce to health apps. Currently, I work for an HR company and so I'm kind of in charge of the timekeeping software. And while that sounds really boring, it's actually really fun. Every day I get to wake up in place like homes and try to solve another problem within the code. And so I'm very careful to obey my work policies and the programmers work more than eight hours a day. And I find in the night times when I'm clocked out of work, I will be using cannabis at that point. And I find, I have such a higher focus on the code. I've been doing this now for a long time, so it's easy to get burned out and you're just like going through the motions and you don't want to do it. And then you're looking at Facebook or something like that. But when I'm on the cannabis, it's just kind of like, I'm listening to good music and I'm just zoned in. And so I find that that helps me when I have to work over time.

Tim Pickett: Did you find that you have to find strains that work for that?

Justin Wright: Yes.

Tim Pickett: It seems to me some strains just make me stupid.

Justin Wright: Yes. You have to be very careful. So White 99 is a really good one for me to stay focused on work. But if I took something like, I had this one very powerful strain, I think it was Wookie. I got Wookie and that one made me really just, I was couch locked and then I had another one called Black Flag. And that one just sedated me. So you have to be very careful with your strains.

Tim Pickett: We talked bout this earlier, buying a little bit. Buying an eighth, buying three and a half grams trying it out. Don't go buy an ounce.

Justin Wright: No. And you know what? There's so many strains to go around. I would encourage people just to buy one ounce in one eighth jars. That's what I do. Because every jar is a new prize.

Chris Holified: I like this guy.

Tim Pickett: I do too.

Chris Holified: It has a little toy inside.

Tim Pickett: It's like, Oh, it's like Christmas.

Justin Wright: And then the other thing I would encourage people because I have a friend that he says, he's very pro combustion. And while that is kind of illegal in Utah, it's kind of still the de facto people like, Oh, you smoke pot for medicine. They don't think there's any other way to take it. But with vaping, man, you can get so many flavor extractions. And so that's the other fun thing with just buying in one eighth, this one tastes like bubblegum. This one tastes like blueberries. And so it's kind of like Willy Wonka's magical factory.

Chris Holified: So your family supportive of it? And what about your friends and stuff like that? They're pretty supportive too or have you found it kind of causing problems with anybody?

Justin Wright: There's a few of my friends that know that I use it, but for the most part it's mom's the word.

Chris Holified: Yeah, mom's the word. I get you.

Tim Pickett: And you've got a young child.

Justin Wright: He's 10. And he is kind of funny. He'll go to school. And I think he's almost at the age where they start doing the dare programs and stuff. And I'm like, don't say anything.

Tim Pickett: I know, we have the same conversation at my house too. We thread a needle, I feel like, especially in this state even, maybe everybody does with the, what to say what to do around the kids, what to include them on and what not to. And that's new charted territory. Do you feel like you're —

Justin Wright: Yes.

Tim Pickett: There is no book, there's no norm for what to include kids on and what not to.

Justin Wright: No. And I ask myself, what is my son going to think when he is a teenager and he knows that his dad is basically a pot head or a chronic user of cannabis, to say it nicely.

Tim Pickett: But that's the truth. I mean we use, and you say pothead, but Chris and I we'll use whatever term you want. You want to call it weed, pot, cannabis. It doesn't really matter.

Justin Wright: I think you got to embrace culture.

Tim Pickett: Totally. And you've got to be more inclusive, but I get the same thing. I've got a high schooler and I wonder when, I don't think she's been to a party yet, especially with COVID that there's been cannabis there, but it's coming.

Chris Holified: And I'm sure it'll be placed in a different light at that party.

Tim Pickett: Exactly.

Chris Holified: Because it's more of the recreation. It's more of that.

Tim Pickett: Sure. And it's illegal for them to have it and it would be illegal for her to try it at the time.

Justin Wright: Do you think she would be tempted to try it? You think she's like, I know what this stuff is. I see my dad use it all the time. This is something I don't need to.

Tim Pickett: So interestingly in my house, I don't show my children that I use in that way. I don't know why, I've been struggling with this for a year.

Justin Wright: I didn't know if that's illegal or not.

Tim Pickett: No, it's not illegal to use.

Justin Wright: Because I thought using it in front of a minor is illegal.

Chris Holified: I don't know.

Tim Pickett: Definitely, it would be at least a gray area. We need to ask JD about that. That's a good.

Chris Holified: Let us know JD, if you're listening.

Tim Pickett: JD, text me, will you?

Justin Wright: I've tried to basically use it only in my work den. And I'll just say, I'm going to go take my medicine, but he has busted in several times. And he's like, dad, you got to check out this. I downloaded this off of this. And I'm like, Oh no, you're downloading stuff on the computer.

Tim Pickett: My kids did the same thing, they're like, dad, well, what time do you want to go? Go at 420, dad. I get these gifts once in a while. I got a mug with a wake and bake mug and it's got a little bowl and you could actually use it.

Chris Holified: I got that same mug.

Tim Pickett: Did you use the purple?

Chris Holified: Mine's green. And my kids are like, ah, ha ha. That's just so funny. I have some matter horn CBG flower in my office. And it's such a weird, I don't know. It's weird to me.

Tim Pickett: It's normal, right?

Chris Holified: It's not normal to me because we didn't grow up like that. But at the same time, I know people who are totally open. They got jars of weed on the counter with their kids around and that's normal to them.

Justin Wright: It's still kind of like gray area. I don't want to cross that line where all of a sudden child services is knocking on my door or something.

Chris Holified: I think a lot of people don't realize. When I first started using cannabis 20 years ago, I was using it more out in the open with my buddies and stuff because they did. I didn't know we weren't supposed to. You hear, Oh, you're not supposed to it's against the law, but you also hear, you're not supposed to go through a red light and you do once in a while. So I just thought, Oh, I'm with my buddies and can smoke a joint. And we would just be out at a concert or we would be out for a drive. I didn't think, and I've run into people nowadays that are the same way. They're just like, I didn't realize there was that many consequences with cannabis.

Tim Pickett: We've got to get a little bit more educated, it sounds like all of us on the legalities. On the other hand, legal issues aside, it's still just a weird space.

Chris Holified: I have a liquor cabinet. I have cannabis in the house. You know what, where do I fit? You can mix a drink in front of your four year old.

Justin Wright: When I was a kid, I had a friend growing up and his mom would drink beer in front of us all the time. It's like, so what's the difference with using a plant?

Tim Pickett: This is the exact conversation we have at our house because we all — I’ll have a mixed drink at my house in front of my children. I don't think that's wrong.

Chris Holified: Nobody even thinks anything of it.

Tim Pickett: Yeah. Nobody thinks anything of it. My kids know you're not old enough to drink. You can't try it. You can't touch it.

Justin Wright: I told my kid, I said, I have a purpose to be using this plant. I am above the age of 21 and therefore I'm legal to use it. You can't use this stuff. And he's like, I don't want your stinks.

Tim Pickett: But see, there's a great conversation. Guns in the house, alcohol in the house, cannabis in the house, teaching your children about it, about what's right, what's wrong, why you use it? Normalizing it, de-stigmatize it.

Justin Wright: Yeah. He doesn't think it's some taboo anymore. He actually thinks that's what makes my dad cool. He's no longer angry dad, he's cool.

Chris Holified: Do you ever worry though? One thing I worry about with kids is if they would say, tell their friends, my parents use marijuana and then their parents finding and then maybe the kids would be ostracized and kind of like, Oh, they got bad parents. I don't want my kids to associate with these kids.

Tim Pickett: We're going to get to that. We're going to get to them because I mean, already we live in Utah, where if you drink —

Chris Holified: I run into that issue. We run into that already.

Justin Wright: My kids can't play with your kids because my you drink.

Tim Pickett: Well, you've got alcohol in the house. I mean, if they knew that I had liquor in the cabinet, I'm sure there'd be some people who wouldn't want their kids to come over.

Justin Wright: Luckily I haven't really crossed that road because of COVID. Everyone's kind of like whatever. But that is something that concerns me, what happens with that?

Tim Pickett: I know we're headed in the right direction though. Think about 10 years ago, you wouldn't have had these conversations with your kids. And now my kids know it's a legitimate medicine. We use it for a bunch of different stuff, they understand. They'll find something in the house and they're like, Oh, here dad, here's the battery.

Justin Wright: Yeah. The only thing that I have concerns with is, what happens when my kid is old enough, I'm not home and he brings his friends home and they find the weed. Am I the one that's legally accountable for that?

Tim Pickett: Probably.

Justin Wright: Probably. So I'm thinking I probably need to get a safe.

Tim Pickett: Safe, lockable bags, keep it away from everybody. Do not have too much too.

Chris Holified: A lot of the — I know you sell them here. Do you still sell them here?

Tim Pickett: Yeah, we sell a ton of them, a lockable skunk bag. It's a carbon lined bag. So it doesn't smell, you put flower in it, anything. And it's got a simple luggage lock. Now, you hit it with a hammer, it's going to come open. But just having it in the lock.

Chris Holified: Just in the lock and then you can even put in something a little more secure if you want.

Justin Wright: Well, this way, if someone does break it in, you can at least say, look, I did my due diligence to make sure.

Tim Pickett: And that's what we try to encourage people, don't have a ton around and have it in a locked container. This is where the medicine resides in the house. Then all the kids know. That's the medicine bag.

Justin Wright: I still think that it's sad that we have to do that when grandma's opioids are in the medicine cabinet.

Chris Holified: You should be locking those up too. I mean, shoot. I knew kids back in the day that used to raid people's medicine cabinets and take the good stuff.

Tim Pickett: Every time they'd go to anybody's house, they were always stealing pills.

Chris Holified: What would you tell somebody, let's say somebody's listening and they're kind of on the fence of getting their medical card, right? They're like, should I get my medical card? Should I call Tim up and get my card? They're nervous so maybe, would you give them any words of advice? What would you tell them?

Justin Wright: That is such a good question. Yeah, because when I first had the conversations with my wife, she was crying. Because she's from Japan and marijuana is called timeout there and it's way illegal, way stricter than here. And so she was like, why would you want to do something like that? And so eventually, I think everyone has to come to a crossroads to say, where am I going to go? Because current traditional Western medicine, isn't cutting it for me. So what do you have to lose if you follow by the rules? Cannabis, I think can be a wonderful medicine. And I'd say give it a try. I probably quote Chong from Cheech & Chong to say, "I now look at medicines and I think that's a drug, and I look at my plant and I say, that's my medicine." I'd say give it a try. I don't think it's for everybody. But I think you'd be doing yourself the biggest favor by saying, yeah, let's go try it out at least once to see if this helps me with my problem.

Tim Pickett: Well said.

Chris Holified: Oh yeah. I'm glad I asked. Do you have any favorite off the top of your head? I know we didn't ask this before you came in. So if you don't have anything, that's fine. But do you have any websites that you like to go to that you like to educate yourself with? Because you sound you've really educated yourself and learning about it. Any recommendations off the top of your head that you would tell somebody to go to?

Justin Wright: Let me answer that question. The websites that I go to on a daily basis would be, Leafly, and Hytiva, but then I also will scour medical journals. I got my master's in instructional design and technology. And the only thing I learned from that school was actually how to read pure reviewed journals.

Chris Holified: That's awesome.

Tim Pickett: It's a skill not a lot of people have.

Justin Wright: I've been researching terpenoids, terpenes and cannabinoids because I always had an interest in the tolerance. So I've been scouring those sites, but I think for the day to day generals, the best source to go to is there is a book called The Medical Cannabis Guide. And I can't remember the author. She's a doctor who was actually on I think, don't quote me on this because I was probably medicated when reading this, but I think she was from California. And she worked for the law, the department of justice busting druggies. And she had no mercy for cannabis users and her whole entire perspective got turned around and she wrote this incredible book and it talks about the history back in 1937, getting the medical cannabis tax and how a nylon was coming out. And they were afraid that that like cannabis, hemp was going to destroy their industry.

Justin Wright: So basically she explains the whole history, how government and money is what basically made cannabis illegal. And then she goes on with the medical benefits and she says, this state has for these reasons and these reasons. Utah's, I feel bad for Utah because the amount of criteria to be accepted as a cannabis user is so small, but she talks about all these other problems, conditions that it can truly help with. And the only reason why the medical field moved away, I think it was, was his name. Dr. Woodward? In 1944, he went on record and said, the only reason why they moved away from cannabis is it's so hard to prescribe the right amount, and pills kind of made that easy. So yeah, that book right there, if you really want to get educated, that's a good read.

Chris Holified: Do you ever see yourself doing something more with the cannabis industry? You're in the software industry.

Justin Wright: I remember when Dragonfly Wellness said they were hiring and I went and I looked to see what they were hiring for and they didn't have anything open for software, but I sent my resume anyway. I'm like, dude, I would love to work on your website, but I never heard back. If the opportunity rose, it would be a dream.

Chris Holified: I think that would be that way for all of us and Tim lucked out and he started this whole thing.

Justin Wright: Yeah, man, you guys are living the dream. That's a cool t-shirt by the way.

Tim Pickett: Oh, yeah. This is a, healthcare to buzz about, t-shirt the Utahmarijuana.org t-shirt. It's super cool. It's got a couple of bees and the THC molecule what looks like a honeycomb. This has been awesome.

Chris Holified: I appreciate you doing the podcast with us. Do you have any other questions for us? I know we covered a lot of what you're probably involved with cannabis. Is there anything that you were hoping we would talk about that we haven't had a chance to talk about?

Justin Wright: As just the patient of Utah, there's not a whole lot of in depth detail I can provide about the industry and where it's going.

Chris Holified: But your use, what you shared was awesome because I think people listening might be able to relate a little bit with it. That's what I'm hoping.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, I think so. I mean, you come across to somebody who is really knowledgeable about cannabis use, but very careful about the use, about having it in the house, talking about tolerance.

Chris Holified: You don't find that.

Tim Pickett: You really don't find a lot of people. A lot of people are concerned about tolerance and building up too much of a tolerance, but we don't talk about it enough.

Justin Wright: No we don't. And thank you for saying that. Like I said, advice for anybody getting into this, educate yourself, I did. I wanted to make sure that it was going to be right for me. And is it really just some fake medicine or was it really going to do something for me? So I spent a lot of time before I got into this. For two months I was just reading up on everything.

Tim Pickett: That's really cool.

Chris Holified: And I tell people, Hey, what's the worst. Try it. If it doesn't work, you don't have to do it no more. No one's going to make you keep doing it.

Tim Pickett: Not at all.

Justin Wright: The only question I had for you guys is, what's your preferred way to ingest cannabis?

Chris Holified: Well, my preferred way is burning it, combustion but obviously in Utah, that doesn't work. So I use a volcano personally right now. That's what I have.

Justin Wright: Do you use the bags with that?

Chris Holified: Yeah, that's actually what I was making some phone calls in between this last interview I was trying to, it's tough to find them. I need some replaceable. And so if anybody listening, let me know if you know where to get some because maybe I still haven't gotten any by the time you're listening to this. So, that's what I use. Because I am just at home. I know people get the portable vape things and all that.

Justin Wright: Volcano has been around for a long time. That's a good one.

Tim Pickett: Yeah, for me, I'm somebody who likes different thing for different times, different places, different events.

Chris Holified: You even got this PAX 3.

Tim Pickett: The PAX 3, I really like that. And yet the Firefly, the taste is a little better with the Firefly. So there's places and times I like that. I'll be honest, there is a time and place I think a good old joint could be the thing. But like you, strains, I go back to this tomato discussion all the time. I like all kinds of different tomatoes. Grape tomatoes are good on salads and heirloom, thick, cut garden fresh tomatoes are good on sandwiches. And so to me, it's the variety and using cannabis as medicine, not every day. I don't have a headache every day. I don't have the same thing going on every day. So that's the beauty, is I can use it for different things at different times and I can be creative about it too. It gives me more control frankly than just a typical prescription medication. So there's the answer for me.

Justin Wright: Cool. The only other thing that I had was have you guys ever recycled your AVB?

Chris Holified: Oh yeah. Well, my wife's really big into edibles. We actually got the Levo II. I don't know if you're familiar with that. I don't understand all the logistics she does. it extracts it and makes it an oil and all this and that.

Justin Wright: You can make gummies.

Chris Holified: Yeah. She's making gummies and all that. And so she uses the AVB or what do you call it? ABV, already been vaped. She uses that and then she will actually even make some, even she's made lotions with it man. And cream.

Justin Wright: What is this thing called?

Chris Holified: Levo. L-E-V-O. And then the II. If you get the Levo II, the first one, from what I understand, didn't decarb the flower, the second one does.

Justin Wright: Now, if you already have it decarb, like AVB you don't need to.

Chris Holified: Well, you wouldn't need to do that, but obviously it might not just be all that high in THC, obviously, if you've vaped most of the THC or anything like that.

Tim Pickett: Becomes a little more CBN, different stuff, but I've got patients who just eat it.

Chris Holified: Yeah. My wife will do that. She'll throw it on bread.

Justin Wright: Oh, that way. I thought, man, like plain. I have a jar of ABV. I didn't know if they were just dipping their fingers.

Tim Pickett: Yeah. They'll get a pinch and put it on something and eat it. And yeah, it doesn't taste that good.

Justin Wright: Does that absorb? I thought there was a science with extracting it that you had to get.

Tim Pickett: No, because it's already decarbed because it's already been vaped. So it's anything over 250 degrees or 300 degrees. I think it's 300. Anything over that, you've got an activated plant. So it is in this sense. It is an edible.

Justin Wright: Dude, I got to look into this Levo II because I made some MCT oil with my AVB, but I looked up a recipe how to make the Haribo gummies. And I ordered like this gummy bear mold on Amazon, I'm going to make some gummies, but you can't do that with MCT oil.

Chris Holified: Looking at Levo, it's 200 bucks. It's not cheap, but it's not like crazy.

Justin Wright: No, but that's an investment. Because if you can recycle that because buying gummies and edibles and tinctures is expensive as.

Chris Holified: Or she will go at the pharmacy and get some flower and then extract it and it will go so much further because she puts them in tinctures.

Tim Pickett: There's some calculators online too. You'll be able to measure how much, what the percentage THC is in your flower and how much oil you're using. And then it will give you a pretty good breakdown of how much THC per milliliter is in your oil.

Justin Wright: No way.

Tim Pickett: Yeah. There's some pretty good calculators online.

Justin Wright: I would still want to do that. But the only thing that I would look at is, I would look at that flower and say, Oh man, you're just cooking that in the oven. I could be like, baby —

Tim Pickett: I know, yeah.

Chris Holified: There's some Facebook groups too on Levo. Levo has some Facebook groups, if you're on Facebook, go join those in some of the other people that have used it.

Justin Wright: I'll have to do that.

Tim Pickett: And as you get the different types of flower, that'll be available here and the price will come down a little bit on a few things.

Justin Wright: That is really.

Chris Holified: And she's infused oils just for cooking, non-cannabis related, she's doing that. My wife's, she's gotten into all this natural stuff all of a sudden.

Justin Wright: That's cool. Cool.

Chris Holified: So let's talk about how can people connect with you, man, if people want to reach out.

Justin Wright: If want to reach out the best way to reach out to me is on Instagram— @beehivechronic, is my username.

Chris Holified: Beehive chronic. And beehivehronic.com, is your blog?

Justin Wright: Beehivechronic.com is my blog. I'm going to be revamping that to almost be kind of a blog/online comic, because I feel like to be able to draw and illustrate some of the things that I have seen positive with cannabis, I'm kind of looking forward to sharing my experiences that way. Look for 2021 to see that. I'm trying to drop a new comic strip on Instagram every Friday. So we'll see what turns out. To me, I'm just doing it for fun. And it's just kind of my outlet to share my positive experience with everybody else about medical cannabis.

Chris Holified: I wish every patient would do this. Do you journal at all too? Do you write a hand journal with your experiences with cannabis?

Justin Wright: No, because my handwriting sucks so bad, so that's why I did the blog.

Tim Pickett: At least you're doing something. I think everybody should journal their cannabis experiences.

Justin Wright: Yeah, everybody should.

Tim Pickett: I get a lot more from journaling.

Chris Holified: I've noticed that since I have.

Justin Wright: The other reason that I wanted to do that, it was, I believe Dr. Anden was saying, they're looking for more statistics of how it's helping people in Utah, because I feel like the government was kind of a little hesitant about that. So I figured if I can.

Tim Pickett: And they still are adding conditions and subtracting conditions. They always talk about subtracting.

Justin Wright: Are they subtraction chronic pain?

Tim Pickett: No, they will never subtract chronic pain. But there's been talk about subtracting PTSD because of the evidence.

Justin Wright: I'm sorry to hear that.

Chris Holified: And what would they do? Just say, Oh, sorry. If that's what you qualified for you just can't have part anymore or would they be grandfathered in?

Tim Pickett: I don't know what they would do?

Justin Wright: I'm a firm believer that cannabis can totally help. Especially our service men in the army. They need something because.

Chris Holified: It's the least we can give them, come on.

Tim Pickett: Absolutely. I mean, they're sleeping without cots at the Capitol.

Justin Wright: That's something.

Chris Holified: How can people get ahold of you, Tim? As we wrap this episode up.

Tim Pickett: Utahmarijuana.org and the podcast will be up there at Utahmarijuana.org/podcast. You can look for us there, chat with us online. If you would need help finding a way to become a patient, Justin mentioned Dr. Anden, great provider in Ogden. We are also in Ogden and here in Millcreek and across the street from Beehive pharmacy. How about you, Chris?

Chris Holified: You can listen to my other podcast. I am Salt Lake Podcast. Iamsaltlake.com. We've got a new episode, goes up there every week. So go find out about some of these awesome people in Salt Lake city that we've chatted with. Also call our voicemail lineup, (385) 215-9557. This is our THC hotline. We should name it something.

Tim Pickett: THC hotline.

Chris Holified: The cannabis hotline. No, I mean, this is something for you to call if you have questions about cannabis, if you have questions about getting your card even, if you have questions for Tim. We can maybe answer them on the podcast.

Tim Pickett: Absolutely.

Chris Holified: Questions for myself or possible future guests and make sure you subscribe whatever outlet you're in, that way you get all these episodes right to your phone, right when they get released because we have a brand new one goes... I don't know if you know this, Tim, they go live every Friday morning at 4:20. I figured out how to get it to go live at 4:20 AM. So that's when they go live in the podcast feeds, 4:20 AM on Friday morning.

Tim Pickett: That's awesome.

Chris Holified: You'll get it right there. So subscribe and we'll see you next week on the next episode of a Utah in the Weeds, right?

Justin Wright: Yep. All right, everybody stay safe out there. Thank you for having me.

Chris Holified: Awesome. Thanks, Justin.

We're excited to announce that we've partnered with Zion Medicinal to bring you a brand-new educational video series, Discover Marijuana with Tim & Blake. We've worked hard to bring facts and information to the people who need it most: Medical Cannabis patients. Consider your hosts, Tim Pickett, a QMP in Utah and founder of Utahmarijuana.org, and Blake Smith, Chief Scientific Officer of Zion Medicinal, your science guides. They'll bring you the facts, you just sit back, relax, and learn all you've ever wanted to know about cannabis. Our first episode drops very soon, but to hold you over until then, here's a little taste of what's to come.

Cannabis is Legal in Utah: Now What?

Tim Pickett qualified medical provider Utah Marijuana Blake Smith chief science officer Zion MedicinalIn Utah, Medical Marijuana was only just legalized in March 2020, leaving a lot of Utahns confused and wondering what that really means for them as patients. Well, now you can rest easy, Utah. Meet Tim and Blake. In this preview, Tim will help you break down the benefits of marijuana as medical treatment, providing special insight as a medical provider.

Looking for a more in-depth, behind the scenes explanation of WHY this all works? We’ve got you covered there, too. Blake Smith, Chief Scientific Officer of Zion Medicinal, will get into the science of it all. He’ll discuss marijuana chemistry and get into the nitty-gritty of how marijuana works with a patient's endocannabinoid system to treat and manage a variety of medical conditions.

Strains & Delivery

When it comes to marijuana, for beginners especially, you’ve got to throw out almost everything you’ve ever known about medication. Medical Tim Pickett qualified medical provider Utah Marijuana Blake Smith chief science officer Zion MedicinalMarijuana is a whole new ballgame. With the recent legalization of Medical Marijuana in Utah, many lifelong users were left wondering how to adjust their usage to adhere to the law, and many newbies were just wondering where in the world to start. In this preview, Blake gives you an idea of what cannabis compounds to look for when purchasing your CBD or THC products, and which to completely avoid.

Here's a cannabis pro tip: Tim will almost always recommend CBD for beginners of Medical Marijuana treatment, to combat the possible “too high” feeling that you may experience as your body adjusts to the THC. You'll want to store this away for later.

Strains for Pain Relief

Tim Pickett qualified medical provider Utah Marijuana Blake Smith chief science officer Zion MedicinalIn Utah, marijuana is used by patients medicinally to treat chronic pain ailments more than any other condition — over 65% more Utah patients use marijuana for pain than the next most common qualifying condition in Utah, PTSD.

Tim treats hundreds of chronic pain patients in his clinic, Utah Therapeutic Health Center. You can catch him in this preview covering things from a patient/provider point of view to help you understand the many factors that influence a Medical Cannabis provider's decision to recommend some patients at one dose, and some at another. From a science standpoint, catch Blake touching specifically on cannabis strains available in Utah, as well as the types of Medical Marijuana to most successfully treat your chronic pain, or whatever your medical condition may be.

Coming soon

Our first full-length episode launches next week — we can barely herb our enthusiasm. Be sure to subscribe to the Discover Marijuana YouTube channel to catch the entire series. You can also find Discover Marijuana with Tim & Blake here, with episodes being posted weekly, or on Zion Medicinal's website. We hope you enjoy what we've created for you. Thanks for watching!

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