Last week, The Kansas City Star
and metro TV news were brooding over K2, a legal synthetic pot
It supposedly gives you the same high as marijuana and is legally available for purchase for $15 a bag at shops in Lawrence. Of course, the cops don't like it. And legislators want to ban it.
But in all this fuss, no one has actually said whether K2 gets you high.
The answer is important because (a) if it doesn't get you stoned,
lawmakers have better things to do than pass unnecessary laws to curry
political points, and (b) you have better things to do than drive around
searching for barely legal faux-reefer if it doesn't work.
So in the interest of investigating political intent and protecting consumers, the Pitch Action
News Team took a day trip to the Sacred Journey -- a Lawrence botanical
store -- bought two bags of K2 and smoked up in the parking lot like a
bunch of high school kids getting stoned before first bell.
I'll be protecting the identity of our testers, given the nature of drug hysteria in this country and the long memory of the Internet. I've included their frequency of marijuana use, if any. As for me, yes, I smoked K2, and I'll tag my own thoughts at the end. I consider this a self-inoculation in case getting a job in a PR firm ever sounds like a good idea.
Because K2 is sold in different flavors, grades and prices, and because we wanted to be thorough, we got two different kinds each sold in 3-gram bags. One was the Standard, which cost $15. The other, Blonde, was a citrus blend and cost twice as much as the Standard. K2 looks like potpourri stomped to dust and mixed with confetti, and it smells about the same. We chose the reliable, available-at-every-gas-station Zig Zag rolling papers as our method of conveyence. All we wanted to know was this: "Does K2 really get you high like marijuana does?"
this is legal. From a regular pot smoker
: "I was satisfied with the high I got. It didn't last long, but I did
feel some visual effects (things appeared bright, slightly blurry) and a relaxed physical state. I thought the Blonde was more smooth on the lungs and tasted better. I would use K2 if I only had access to low-grade marijuana. For a small amount of money more, one could buy some decent nuggets. I didn't feel any lasting side effects after the two times I sampled the K2."From an occasional smoker
: "Makes me super nauseous. Need to lie down ... " From a moderate
: "As a sometimes-to-moderate pot smoker, I think K2's high is pretty comparable to the buzz you get from smoking a oney of middies
. We smoked two joints. It smelled like herbal, nonclove cigarettes and made my lips tingle slightly. When the high set in, the world seemed to tick a bit slower, and, shit, if everything wasn't funny as hell ... for like five minutes. After that the high creeps off for another 20 or so minutes until it leaves your senses a bit dull, but definitely not too much to talk to police or your boss. Stuff brings on cottonmouth, 'high thoughts,' but no apparent eye redness or lasting burnt-ness. Best part: you know it's not blood pot from a Mexican drug cartel, like most of the brick-weed up in this city. I'll definitely smoke it again." From someone who doesn't like pot anyway
: "My thoughts: K2 made me feel just as uncomfortable and self-conscious as actual marijuana. This is coming from someone who hates smoking weed, so it's actually a positive review. Two thumbs up!"
We had one more tester, who left to get a soda five minutes into the experiment, never returned, and forgot to send me a review.
Personally, it's been a long time since I thought it was in society's best interest for me to smoke a joint and calm the hell down. So I'm not much of an authority anymore. I stopped smoking because I started to get paranoid about adult responsibilities. Smoking pot is no fun if you're just going to obsessively check your credit score and pay bills at 3 a.m.
That said, I agree with our first reviewer that Blonde is a lot smoother on your lungs. The Standard is rough, and the next morning I coughed up a nice ball of brown stuff.
Regarding the effects: I had a great time. For some reason, everything struck me as hilarious for about 30 minutes. Perhaps it's because I was the person in the group who smoked most rarely, aside from the one who outright hated pot.
I didn't feel any of the paranoia I used to associate with marijuana. There's also a very steep drop once the chemicals have done their job. You look up and you're dead sober; this is unlike weed, which always left me lethargic and stupid for an hour or two after smoking. This is the kind of thing you could do on your lunch break and be back to work on time and clear-eyed.
One of our testers noted the clear conscience you can have knowing this stuff wasn't connected to the criminal drug trade, but there's also peace of mind in knowing you can smoke this stuff walking around downtown without attracting attention. It smells closer to a clove cigarette than anything resembling marijuana. And if you make it right, it looks like you're rolling your own cigarettes. Which I suppose you essentially are since K2 is still legal.
If they wanted to make medical marijuana legal (AARP members overwhelmingly support that
, by the way) and ban this, it'd be a worthy trade. But that's unlikely to happen anytime soon. Because the effects are so short-lived and so minor compared to how I feel come 2 a.m. in my favorite bar, it seems equally silly for legislators to make this a priority or huff and puff about keeping legal.
Get it while you can. But if K2 is banned before you get a bag, you didn't miss much.
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