An interview with Visual Artist Rey Rey Rodriguez for Plants Before Pills.
When did you first try cannabis?
I was 13 years old the first time I tried cannabis. I smoked socially throughout high school, stopped around the age of 19, and then picked it back up in my late 20’s.
What inspired you to smoke?
I always had an admiration for the plant. Everyone I idolized as a kid, and the people I admire today are all considered potheads. I grew up watching Cheech & Chong’s films, and all my favorite musicians from the 60s till today, as well as my favorite athletes, public figures, and celebrities (Bob Marley, Jimi Hendrix, The Beatles, Mike Tyson, Dave Chappelle, Michael Phelps, Cypress Hill, Snoop, Dre, Biggie, Pac, Nick & Nate Diaz, Elon Musk, Joe Rogan, Eddie Bravo and more) were / are all advocates of the herb.
Two of my favorite podcasts are B Real’s “Smokebox” and Mike Tyson’s “Hotboxin’,” where the hosts interview their guests while smoking. One of my favorite events to watch is a Brazilian Jiu-Jitsu competition called, “High Rollerz,” where the competitors smoke before they compete at the highest level.
No one can say that cannabis is a lazy or unintelligent person’s drug anymore.
What about cannabis do you like or enjoy?
I smoke / vape both Sativa and Indica, which affect me in two completely different ways.
Sativa clears my mind, allowing me to be present and to focus on whatever the current task at hand is. Whether I’m working, reading, studying, practicing, or doing something else that requires concentration, it allows me to be more present and to dissect, observe, and problem solve better.
The intensity in which I interpret information heightens, and I find myself, breaking down art, music, movies, body movement, meditation and even memories on a deeper level. My imagination and ideas are more vivid. For me, sativa is good for any physical or mental activity.
I use indica for rest, relaxation, to calm the body and mind when it’s time to wind down, and to fall asleep. This one helps clear my mind from any worry and stress. It zones me out, I become one with my mattress and pillow, making my body feel weightless, and filling me with a cooling effect from the darkness as I lay there with my eyes closed. Indica is perfect when you’re ready to knock out.
What would you say to those that still think cannabis is a dangerous drug?
I don’t think it’s for everyone but, the days of “Reefer Madness” and everyone assuming that pot will make us dumb, slow, brain dead, or will lead us to crack and heroin are behind us. Cannabis is legal throughout the US in most states either for recreational or medicinal purposes. Cancer, mental health, athletic recovery, brain trauma, and many other conditions are being treated with cannabis. I’ve been diagnosed with PTSD, OCD, and ADHD. I’m not sure if that doctor diagnosed me correctly, but I do know that his recommendation for all of those conditions was marijuana.
Is there anything you’d recommend to those wanting to learn more about cannabis?
Anyone can do a Google search for most questions. I like to refer those interested in current information on all things cannabis to visit High Times Magazine’s website. And anyone that would like to learn a bit of the plant’s history and about the negative propaganda that led to it becoming illegal, should read Jack Herer’s book, “The Emperor Wears No Clothes.”
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