Bright New Day
“You tried to beat the system by growing in the sun
We just want to thank you for providing us such fun.
We know that you all hate us
But we don’t really care
We found your plants and cut them
Who said that life was fair!”
Drew threw back his head and laughed after he recited from memory a note left by the Campaign Against Marijuana Production (CAMP) almost 15 years earlier.
“It was a game,” he said his perfect teeth white against golden skin. “Remember how good [the cops] used to be? … The helicopter pilots were very skilled at scouring the hills and picking out the bright green patches…Then, there was the dope on a rope…
“We were like, if they look this hard, it’s not even fair.” He laughs at himself knowing that most people don’t perceive what he does as a sport where fairness counts. But, he believes it. He takes another bite of breakfast and says again, “It was a game to us.”
The taunting little rhyme above indicates that the game feeling can be reciprocal. As recently as 2008, in one of the largest Federal raids in California, 450 agents stormed Humboldt County in a marijuana related operation. Two days later they made public details of their activities. The title of the piece—Joint news release (Wink, wink. Nudge, nudge) could have been coincidental but considering the effort to make public the release exactly at 4:20–.the tongue in cheek humor, a “we gotcha” aimed at growers, was obviously deliberate.
The matching of wits between the two sides adds an entertainment factor for the officer and, most especially, the outlaw. Drew acknowledges that part of the reason for cultivating marijuana is the excitement and the risk. “I grew up in a Marijuana Culture. …. As kids, we would watch helicopters fly over and fly back with big nets full. It was fun to watch….”
At 35, Drew looks back on a long profession of growing marijuana outdoors.
The above is an excerpt of The Game– an article I wrote which appears in the newest issue of Grow magazine. The winner of this year’s Emerald Cup (more about that in another post) told me that that article reflected his life and that of his friends. You can read more about the game Drew and his fellow growers play here (It’s in PDF format).