Twenty years ago I was an art student in downtown Los Angeles. Like any aspiring artist, I enjoyed cannabis on those late nights when inspiration was lacking.
Typically I would trudge down to MacArthur Park, navigating the homeless panhandlers, and score a dime bag Wrapped in tinfoil I would buy some and using my limited Spanish, I would try to haggle. Some was downright awful, some was okay. Occasionally I would get some uncrushed sativa with a reasonably decent taste. If I wanted good green bud I had to travel to San Francisco. It was almost unheard of to get green bud consistently
Fast forward 20 years: I’m in the office of the Oaksterdam News and I’m being asked to sample ten varieties from LA clubs. We had a number of criteria to judge including look, smell, taste, and high.
Usually in a Cannabis cup one finds only the best and this case was no exception. First I must say Kush has a foothold and then some. There were some eight Kush varieties ranging from very good to superior. One Hawaiian strain had a beautiful smell and finally a Train Wreck which was very good. Purple Kush, won on nearly every criteria and it deserved it. Its presentation was breathtaking.
SATIVA SLEUTHS — Two intrepid Oaksterdam News investigators volunteered to take a close up look at the resin gland development and maturity of medical samples offered by Southern Cal dispensaries.
Oaksterdam News photos by Jaime Galindo.
While top-grade cannabis has been available for Hollywood connoiseurs for some time, only now is it becoming available to the average person.
Moreover, the advances in indoor cultivation and the medical club economy have provided the freeway for the genetics to travel south. Even if some of these strains were grown up North, it must be said, the demand for higher grades acts like a magnet for North Coast growers.
It must also be said that Southern California has plenty of indoor grows. I wonder where all the Mexican herb goes now? Do the rancheros south of the border, who cranked out the same product for years, notice a decline in sales? Are they nervous? Have they gotten their own Dutch seeds to compete with domestic growers? Time will tell.
However, in the meantime, the tectonic plates of social change have shifted quite a bit from a few decades ago.
As I first began to sample the entries I made a point of smoking a very tiny amount. Getting accurate results from so many samples becomes almost impossible. Differentiating between different highs in my one brain was not possible. Ultimately I would like to have sampled one a day for ten days, but deadlines were looming and we pressed on. After the third or fourth sample I realized that I’m no longer the heavy smoker I used to be.
I kept commenting how amazing each sample was. All were winners. There were no losers. Soon after I set down the pipe on the tenth hit, I found myself making my way to a Chinese restaurant to eat a large plate of chicken fried rice, an order of pot stickers, chow mien ... I ate every scrap.
The next day came word of federal raids. How sad a day. After sharing her bounty, LA took a huge hit. Amazingly, no one was arrested and some clubs had reopened the next day. The battle of LA
It’s safe to say that, in the years since I lived there, LA now has top-rate herb all year round.
was on! This community would not just be content with good medicine; they knew it was time sow their political oats too. Large protests were organized in the following days. The people were fighting back.
They had a taste of freedom and would accept no less than liberty. So this LA confidential is confidential no more.
The city has set a new standard and the whole world is watching.