by Rick Thompson/originally appeared in The Rolling Paper June 2021
The summer months have me thinking about the out-of-doors and activities therein. I love to camp, to hike, to take photos and to be silent while in nature, as a method of self-healing.
As it often happens in Michigan there are a number of things which disturb my calm while I try to grab some meditative time, resting against a tree, back against the bark. Some of the things that disturb my calm remind me of the cannabis industry, and things within it, because I’m a freak like that.
This is the year of the cicadas. These noisy and sometimes destructive insects spend years underground, then burst into attention for some frenzied flying among friends until their mission is accomplished, then the species goes back underground. That’s simplified, of course, but I find there are people in the cannabis industry who behave the same way. After years of helping and doing nothing they emerge from their self-isolation, they get all screwy for a little while, then they drop back to the life they normally lead. While they’re out and making noise, these insects can cause chaos- even if their period of action is short.
Another noise-and-trouble maker is the invincible mosquito. I know, we shudder to read those two words together but it sometimes seems like those tiny winged assassins are invincible, in the sense that no matter how many times you kill one, another is there. In the cannabis industry there are people who get paid by non-cannabis people to lobby and influence the cannabis industry. These are not respectable, dedicated industry lobbying experts- they’re blood-sucking whores who switch allegiances, change positions and flip-flop their platform whenever anyone waves money in their face. They are human mosquitoes, and are invincible in the sense that, no matter how many times they fail or embarrass their current sugar daddy or get sued in very public lawsuits, there will always be someone waving money in their face.
In the warm eves of the summer ‘neath a colorful sky, I rest my weary ass in the soft, gentle grass. I hear frogs croaking, loudly despite the distance, and to my smiling ears they all sound a-chorus. It might mess with my meditation but that sound always makes me smile. In our community we have chorus frogs, too, those activists who cheer their support of things they approve of, cheering loudly despite the distance imposed by Internet communications. When things are happy, the frogs are loud; when they become unhappy their song falls silent. So, too, the voices of our community, falling silent when bad people or bad ideas are advanced.
Maybe it’s just the kid in me but I love frogs; I can live with cicadas; and I wish the mosquitoes would all go away. It seems, some disturbances are more welcome than others when I look to work my magic in the cannabis forest. Most importantly, I accept that all of these things are part of the world which is our industry. You can, too. Just take a deep breath; refocus your mind; and proceed with your life.