Smokey McBongwater and the Mythical Canna-Beast

Before we roll into the deep. I Don’t have any work to show you today, that’s because I’m on top of some interesting projects at the moment. You’ll see those in the upcoming weeks so don’t despair. One of these projects is a frame for Counter Culture #1, which has been printed on canvas and looks sezzy. The other is some album artwork for some tunes a friend of mine has been working on in his musical lab. You’ll learn more when it’s released and I’m allowed to talk about it, for now just sit tight and wait.


Now for our featured presentation.

So I occasionally enjoy examining myths surrounding the healing of the nation, the canna-beast

On one hand; a name like canna-beast gives the plant a bit of a negative connotation there, as if it needs any help in disparaging it’s already questionable name reputation within the mainstream of society.

While on the other hand it could give off a well positive and enticing vibe for those who walk the path less travelled. In that, if you were to offer me a flower that you informed me was a serious canna-beast; I would only ask when, where and if you need me to cook for ye.


I’d be excited about this encounter like Conan would be at the prospect of chopping up some serpent men along with their cruel leader the evil wizard Wrath-Amon.
But this isn’t about hunting for or slaying any particular strain of high grade. It’s about looking at the fine job the government has done in curbing the masses’ interest in consuming, encouraging and otherwise promoting the indulgence of the fire flower. Look it, look it, it’s even having an adverse effect on me.

Today we will have a look at psa’s. Why? It’s all another part of that puzzle of why I began and continue to study prohibition et al. I don’t know about anyone else but, once I start watching one psa I find myself cuing up a list of them and watching them in quick succession, they are truly addictive.

N.B. For the purpose of today’s post, I use psa (Public Service Anouncement) in the rhetoric as reference to anti-marijuana prohibitionist propaganda, unless stated otherwise. Just pay attention to the context within the sentence or argument.

Like reefer madness which seemingly paved the way for, many of the anti-marijuana psa’s throughout the years; have had the ability to amuse and irritate the users and abusers. Much like bad grammar (see what I did there?), can evoke a giggle from those who can identify the difference between correct and incorrect grammar.

That is, while their messages on the surface come across as nothing more than ironic humour to those who do know better, sometimes it can cause some irritation when they think of; those who do not know any better, they who have spent most of their lives taking onboard what the prohibitionists have said and continue to say. Without any further investigation, they will believe what they are told and become rather contentious, finding the need to inform [misinform] those who they believe to be a danger to themselves and society.

For the record, I’m not entirely opposed to psa’s. I believe they are good when aimed at children. Whether it’s in relation to drugs or alcohol, as I do not promote youths getting involved with these substances. So much so, I’d even go on to say, leave those activities for the adults. I say by all means, please discourage the young ones. Do not tell them lies however, give them the truth about the side effects or dangers involved.

The reason is simply because, every day the bucket goes to the well, one day the bottom will have to drop out. – that is; eventually some of those may realise they are being deceived by the powers that be and could find it seemingly difficult to believe them when matters in future are brought up, as they continue to question everything else they’ve been told up to now.

So now, in no particular order; I present to you, three psa’s that I currently find interesting for varying reasons.

Doug Benson = LAD

He’s a proper lad and he has done well to otherwise highlight a few of my old peeves that come from these slanderous and misdirected videos of misinformation. So for this clip, just listen to our boy, Doug.

This clip was of course, from the highly amusing, entertaining and informative film/documentary, “Super High Me.”

If you haven’t watched it yet, then it’s one I implore you to watch. Most certainly should be put on your list of must watch films before you die, go senile or an apocolypse occurs. In fact, watch it as soon as you can, because it’s f@(<!^£ gravy!

In response to the psa itself, with the melting female reefer smoker; someone thought an alternatively good idea would be: “they should make one for alcohol where a dad comes home and beats his wife and kids” – I laughed for a little while at the suggestion and was thoroughly amused, obviously the poster of that comment didn’t say it to be funny. And of course I dont see anything even remotely funny about abusive drunks exploiting or harming their family in any way, male or female. It’s deplorable, despicable and disgraceful.

Unfortunately [or fortunately if you’re a keen drinker] there is no evidence that would suggest that alcohol is the cause for spousal abuse. Perhaps a contributing factor at best, as it may be often used as an excuse for the aggressor to hide behind. Sure, quite often the two seem to be in correlation with each other but of course the science is just not there to support such a claim.

I laughed because I thought that they would never attach something as negative as domestic abuse in a psa for alcohol. They have some unsual ones for sure, of which I can’t say I fully get, Native Americans and alcoholism. The majority of psa’s concerning alcohol, is with binge drinking and teenage binge drinking. Even though they manage to do their share of dramatisation, they don’t seem to get as creative with their information as they would with a substance less accepted in the mainstream i.e. cannabis.


Having only just watched this psa for the first time, I must say that I am rather impressed.

Impressed by how far off the mark they went and how they managed to broadcast a message of constant self stultification. I actually found this one more humorous than infuriating.
Apart from the age old “Marijuana causes lunacy” tale, though not thoroughly proven, will probably be most likely to affect those who already have some sort of predisposition to schizophrenia or another form of mental illness.

I’m not really about to sit here, list and point out everything that’s sic “possibly” wrong with this vid [given that 4:21 of it is bogus], but the only aspect that appears to be worth looking at is the case of the effect ganja has, on one’s creativity. Rather, it’s one I would like to think I could or at least should, look at with the most objectivity, what with being an artist and that.

  • At 3.41: More than the fact that the narrator blatantly disregards the artist’s view on cannabis and the effect it has on his creativity (this I think, is wholly subjective). It’s really a matter of the narrator’s explanation. “Look at these paintings, the artist was stoned when he painted these, those don’t look like real flowers.” – let’s begin with, if it had no positive effects on his creativity then (depending on his technical ability) he would have probably come with a standard still life which would hardly require much, if any creativity at all. at the end of the day all he would be doing essentially, is regurgitating through observation, what is there standing in front of him.
    So in essence they might as well be inferring that the artist’s choice of style, expressionism may be the direct result of “blowing pot” {surely he means smoking/titrating/inhaling} and should be therefore dismissed ?

When the narrator later on goes on to say there’s more to life than grass (which albeit is true), he talks of fulfulling careers and groovy beach parties. I guess that’s fine but then the footage advertises alcohol as an alternative – Oh, yeah, sure! Very responsible message there, drinking wine from the bottle, as well as drinking a budweiser which is just bilge in a can.

I might sound like a member of the temperence movement by now.

I’m not anti-alcohol, I still have the misfortune of getting drunk from time to time. Thankfully a lot less often, way less. Back in the day I would normally make a point of it to get trashed on the lash well in advance. That was with a tolerance that was once high in my hay days – when every Sunday or Friday morning would result in me waking up and reciting the same old line, “I’ll never drink again.” accomponied by a day of recovery.  – a tolerance which has now plummeted down through the floorboards and to the centre of the earth. My enthusiasm for it is more or less non existent, as it has gone out the window somewhere and in its place, a vastly improved understanding of moderation.
That being said, as the psa suggested, I should drink because it’s legal and a much “better” [hopefully not suggesting a healthier] alternative.

As you can see here, your Smokey McBongwater isn’t a big fan of this type of psa. Once again, I think it’s important that youths are disuaded from binging on drugs and alcohol, yes they should be informed of the dangers involved in consuming them as such. However this is absolutely not the way to go about trying to discourage them. They should try to be more to the point and leave all the fairy tales, myths, opinions and lies at the door. They need facts, enough of the fanciful and sensationalist drivel they attempt to expound. It clearly doesn’t work.

The first psa that actually irritated me in the early days…This is a “Talk to Frank” psa from the U.K.

It was maybe a little bit more convincing at the time, mostly due to my own limited understanding. At the same time it seemed as if they were creating/inducing the paranoia themselves. As a matter of fact, they were doing a great job then. Creating doubt in my mind, not sure whether I’m doing the right thing or not. The ridiculousness and uncertainty of it festered in my head until it finally lead to my interest in actually doing research on the topic and challenge the misguided theories laid before me.

There were a few others I could have mentioned, I’ll just link the two with my favourite cartoon heroes from back in the day:

  • Ninja Turtles were used in a more amusing one against marijuana. I guess it’s somewhat acceptable if considering the age group it was supposedly directed at specifically. What did it for me, was Michaelangelo’s a.k.a. The Party Dude’s advice in the situation, “Get a pizza!” – I agree with that, pretty sound advice if you failed to refuse the herb offering and you’ve gotten rather cowabunga’d afterwards.

Now you know!
And knowing is half the battle. H.G. Fields!!!

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