Weed-iquette: A polite idiot’s guide to cannabis

WEED better have good manners in the smoke session, Etiquette guide for first time or experienced users



The etiquette does and don’ts of cannabis consumption.

CAROLYN MCCAMPBELL, Evergreen columnist

Editor’s note: *All names of those associated with WSU have been changed for privacy*

Do you remember when you were young and everyone said sharing is caring? Share your toys, your food, a hit off your bong … that is right, adults over 21, sharing applies to weed, too.

Cannabis remains the most popular federally illegal drug of choice for many Americans, according to the CDC. About 18% of Americans reported using cannabis at least once in 2019.

Weed is a social drug, according to a 2021 article from the Los Angeles Times.

“For many members of the toking tribe, discovering another like-minded soul out in the wild, the first impulse is to share,” wrote Adam Tschorn, senior features writer, in an article from the Los Angeles Times. “Passing a lighted joint to another human being … is the kind of secret handshake that makes two strangers fast friends and even the most mundane moments memorable.”

So for those who are new to drugs or are simply bad at reading social cues, what is one to do? Author of the Emily Post Institute, Lizzie Post, as well as some anonymous sources from the WSU community are here to help us.

Higher Etiquette: A Guide to the World of Cannabis, from Dispensaries to Dinner Parties” is a book written by Lizzie Post and an etiquette guide for all things weed.

Emily Post was an author and American socialite best known for her books on social etiquette, which are still updated by her great-great-granddaughter Lizzie Post. Emily Post wrote her first book “Etiquette” in 1922, according to EmilyPost.com.

“Though times have changed, the principles of good manners remain constant. Above all, manners are a sensitive awareness of the feelings of others,” according to the website.

Being respectful, considerate and sincere are far more important qualities for etiquette than simply knowing which fork to use at a fancy dinner, according to the website. Using a handshake or a fist bump as a greeting does not matter as long as there is good faith and intentionality behind the act.

“When it comes to weed etiquette, it’s sort of like the golden rule,” said Jack Williams (fake name for anonymity), WSU freshman data analytics major. “Treat others the way you want to be treated. If you’re with other people, treat the other people that you’re smoking with the way that you want to be treated.”

His roommate emphasized this idea.

“Kind of what Jack was saying, just being aware of other people and not doing things to make people uncomfortable,” said Jeffrey Smith (fake name for anonymity), freshman kinesiology major.

This idea is also written in “Higher Etiquette.” Even before a smoking “session” starts, it is polite and considerate to gauge the comfort level of other guests, especially if there is no clear host.

“Awareness around those who aren’t participating is key,” writes Lizzie Post in“Higher Etiquette.”

This could be as simple as saying, “Anybody care if I smoke?” while holding up a blunt. Lizzie Post wrote that an even more considerate way is asking, “Anyone prefer we take this outside?” It shows one’s willingness to take the session to an area where secondhand smoke will not bother anyone.

In her book, Lizzie Post emphasizes three pillars of cannabis etiquette: respect, generosity and gratitude.

“One of the most universally known points of etiquette among those who smoke socially is ensuring that everyone has a fresh hit of green bud,” Lizzie Post wrote. “Meaning that each person, to whom a bowl is passed, will be touching flame to green flower as opposed to already burned bud.”

Lizzie Post wrote that the flavor from fresh hits are superior, and “this act of consideration is about ensuring everyone gets tasty tokes.”

Williams and Smith smoke together, but weed is not necessarily only a social drug. Sometimes it is just used to unwind.

“I’m kind of 50/50 because you can smoke with other people, and you can have a good time if you’re around the right people,” Smith said. “But there could be times where you might want to smoke by yourself; you might be having a bad day … and then you’re good by yourself, you don’t need to be around other people.”

Williams said there are times when he would prefer to smoke by himself, but weed is a very social drug. He feels that a lot of people can benefit from smoking weed together, and it is a good bonding experience for people to connect with each other.

For more information and tips on weed etiquette, “Higher Etiquette” can be bought on Amazon, Barnes & Noble or downloaded through Audible.

Lizzie Post’s book covers most of the dos and don’ts of Weed-iquette. Just be mindful and considerate of others, and you should be good to go. Remember what your mother taught you about manners before you hog the blunt.