As cannabis reaches legal status in more states, more people are beginning to enjoy it with friends. With more herb lovers coming to the table, there will be more opportunities to make faux pas. It may be time to review our manners to avoid ruining anybody’s smoke sesh.
1. How are we doing this?
The best thing to ask when someone invites you to get high is what they’re planning on doing. Are we smoking? Dabbing? Vaping? Taking gummies? Making brownies? It’s a wonderful thing that the list of ways to consume cannabis goes on.
Not only does this question prepare you to participate in a specific way, but it also gives you, the guest, the chance to offer up your own resources. Perhaps you have some new gear you’re interested in using or a strain you think everyone should try. Offer it up! The best sessions involve everyone bringing a little so that everyone gets to enjoy a lot!
2. Check with the host.
Sometimes parties can turn into an impromptu smoke sesh. There’s nothing wrong with that, but it’s a smart idea to check with the host before blazing up. Not only does it give them a chance to join the circle, but it gives them a chance to tell you no.
There are plenty of reasons why someone might not want someone smoking around them, and it’s good manners for smokers to remain sensitive to that. They may not like the odor, they may have asthma, nosy neighbors, etc. Asking gives them a chance to guide you to the best place to smoke while allowing them to remain in control of their home.
If discretion is necessary but you have flower, a joint won’t work well., so a one hitter in either a dugout or Krypto-Kit are great for parties and on-the-go toking. A cigarette one hitter is perfect for quick, casual smoking in situations where you want something pocketable or it isn’t appropriate to carry a larger piece. The fact that they look like a conventional cigarette makes them a great way to fit in with the rest of the smokers outside any given party.
3. Who gets the fresh greens?
The general rule is that the host gets the green in a bowl, then everyone follows the old school rhyme, “Be polite and pass to the right.” However, there may be some exceptions: If a one hitter or taster bat is being used, it’s best to let each person smoke the whole bowl, even though it may be two or three tokes. The holder of the dugout or Krypto-Kit can then clear the ashes with a poker tool.
If it’s an ejectable bat like the RYOT spring or twist bat, this is even easier to do and the poker will be needed less often. If one person is providing herb for the whole group, it may be polite to let them enjoy the first hit.
Lastly, is this a special sesh? Is someone having a birthday or other celebration? In that case, show your appreciation by letting them go first. If you’re the first person to hit, be sure to keep the flame on a corner of the bowl, which allows people after you to enjoy greens as well.
4. Don’t be a hash hog.
Everyone likes herb, but nobody likes a hog! If you’re standing in the circle, it’s your duty to keep the smoke moving. The saying “puff, puff, pass” exists for a reason! Taking one hit is always fine. Two is permissible, but if you’re smoking in a group, three is pushing it. Let someone else take a turn!
Of course, there are exceptions here too. Sometimes a lightweight is in the circle with you, and they need a little break. In this case, it’s the solemn duty of everyone else to take a toke in their place while they catch their breath. Keeping things moving is especially important with smokables like joints or blunts, in which holding onto the joint without hitting it is just herb (and money) going up in smoke.
With the advent of pieces like portable vaporizers, this rule is a little more flexible. Since there’s no risk of all your smoke drifting away if you get distracted, you can be a little more relaxed in the pace of your puffing and passing. Still, be sure that everyone gets the opportunity to hit the herb vape as often as they’d like.
5. Don’t smoke when you’re sick.
This rule became especially relevant at the start of the COVID-19 pandemic, but it’s been true for years. Nobody wants to share a joint with somebody who’s hacking and coughing and sniffling all over. It’s just gross. If everyone else is smoking up and you want to join, you’re going to have to provide your own piece because nobody is interested in sharing with a sicky! It’s also ok to wipe the mouthpiece of the pipe or vaporizer before you hit it, to protect yourself from others.
Bonus tip: Lighter Etiquette
If lighters are being used, make sure they get back to whoever supplied them. There’s nothing more frustrating than buying a new lighter just to have it taken by one of your most trusted friends.
Additionally, when buying lighters, be aware that many smokers have superstitions surrounding lighter colors. Depending on the region, white or yellow lighters are widely considered bad luck. The legend goes that white/yellow lighters were in the possession of each member of the 27 Club when they died. Lighter buyers, beware, or you might be next!
In truth, etiquette is reducible to being considerate of others and their needs. While the above tips are great rules of thumb, there are always exceptions. To be a truly gracious green lover, stay conscious of the people around you and keep the circle welcoming to everyone who finds their way into it.