Saturday, January 26, 2019

The Jonbenet Case: A Pharmacologic Angle

DISCLAIMER:  In case Lin Wood or any of the Ramseys' legal team comes across this personal blog post, be warned: everything on this page is for entertainment purposes only.  Nothing written here is intended to be a statement of accusation or irrefutable fact.  The Ramseys are public figures and, as such, can be spoken about freely as subjects of opinion & discussion.  

If the name Patsy Ramsey doesn't ring a bell, that's because she's not the international superstar she was aiming to be when she tried out for Miss America in her youth.  While she attained the Miss West Virginia title, she failed to go any further & ended up getting married to a man named John Ramsey & having two kids--one of whom had the one-of-a-kind name of Jonbenet.  Ring a bell yet?

See the source image
Sexy Patsy in her pageant days :)

Since Jonbenet's mysterious death on Christmas night 1996, speculation has been rampant about whodunnit.  The Ramsey parents were always the prime suspects, along with an elusive "intruder" who allegedly broke in before the family left for a Christmas party, wrote a 2.5 page ransom note & then took Jonbenet to the basement to abuse & kill her while her family lay sleeping.  I'll let you decide which scenario sounds more plausible.

One thing that's always thrown people off about the case is that John & Patsy Ramsey projected the image of the happy All-American family:  wealthy, clean-cut Christian WASPS without criminal records or a history of (reported) child abuse.  How could they kill their daughter in such a brutal manner?  I have no answer other than to quote what FBI Agent Ron Walker said [paraphrasing]:  "Parents have killed their children in as many ways as you can imagine."  Jonbenet was not a typical high-risk child but that doesn't rule out the possibility of a one-time explosive rage incident that went too far.  Sometimes good people do bad things.  Adults have accidentally killed other adults with a single punch.  Children are far easier to injure critically.

Detective Steve Thomas's theory placed Patsy firmly as the killer.  He claimed she blacked out in a rage after Jonbenet wet the bed, inflicted a mortal head wound & proceeded to stage the scene as a kidnapping gone wrong to avoid going to prison for child abuse.  But what would cause a proud pageant mom to harm her beloved daughter so grievously?  To find out, we must delve into Jonbenet's home life a bit.  In 1993 when Jonbenet was only 2, Patsy was diagnosed with Stage 4 ovarian cancer--the most fatal of all gynecologic cancers.  Miraculously she was able to live 13 years after this diagnosis which is NOT usually the case: the disease has taken the lives of Gilda Radner, Madeline Kahn & Dinah Shore to name a few.

Saved By The Cross?

The mid-late '90s when Patsy was diagnosed were the height of the opioid prescribing craze in which doctors were told OxyContin & similar drugs were not addictive, so they were handing them out like candy.  It's safe to say Patsy received the best of everything:  cancer treatment, pain management, anxiety treatment, etc due to the family's wealth.  She also had a hysterectomy which triggers rapid menopause.  That's rough for anyone, let alone a woman raising two small children & trying to maintain a busy lifestyle.  The housekeeper & family friends stated that she & husband John's relationship had "cooled" by this time due to the stress of the cancer as well as her waning sex drive.  John buried himself in his work, earning a billion dollars for his company Access Graphics, while Patsy stayed home in bed as her mom Nedra & housekeeper did most of the heavy lifting around the house.  Understandably.

When she started recovering, Patsy took on an almost manic "seize the day" attitude according to friends, enrolling her kids in every activity available including beauty pageants for Jonbenet.  Shortly before Jonbenet's death, family friends were planning an intervention with Patsy to encourage her to slow down with the pageants & let Jonbenet be a kid.  Patsy was taking Paxil & anxiety medications to deal with the fear of the cancer returning at this time.  (In some people prone to bipolar disorder, antidepressants can trigger mania).  Both she & John took Klonopin (clonazepam) to deal with sleep problems & stress--another medicine that can trigger or worsen mania.  There were also rumors she was using ephedra-based diet pills to lose weight.  I took those myself for years and lemme tell ya, they can be every bit as potent as Adderall or other Schedule II stimulants in high doses.  Patsy also claimed to drink "two cocktails" the night her daughter was killed.  We all know how drinkers tend to round down when pulled over by cops:  "How many beers did you have tonight?"  "Just a couple."  We have no way of knowing how sloshed she was that night or whether she combined booze with pills, but let's pretend for a minute that she did the following:

Took her daily SSRI + ephedra + 2 party cocktails + Klonopin over the course of Christmas Day & night (she was stressed about the holidays & their busy traveling schedule according to their own reports, which might've prompted the Klonopin use before bed).  Let's assume she popped a Klonopin or two upon returning home late & packing for the trip before she retired to bed, only to be woken up by Jonbenet who had wet her bed...again.  Patsy then storms downstairs to her bedroom, drags her into the bathroom where she strips off her wet clothes in an exhausted haze.  An argument ensues.  She accidentally or purposefully bashes Jonbenet's head against the corner of the bathtub or cabinet in a rage.  Then in her panicked state, Patsy proceeds with the staging of the kidnapping scene perhaps enlisting John to help with the strangulation while she writes the ransom note.  But why would he go along with it?

Well, there were signs of chronic (i.e. past, ongoing) sexual abuse in the autopsy, which could've been perpetrated by John or one of his family members/friends.  They couldn't risk taking her to the hospital with a head wound & vaginal trauma or they'd be arrested on the spot.  Jonbenet would've appeared dead or irreparably damaged after the head injury, with shallow breathing & a weak heartbeat until the Cheynes-Stokes breathing kicked in, which is a horrific thing to hear.  It's the "death rattle" that occurs prior to one's passing.  This may be the point at which they decided to put her out of her suffering with the garrote, which was determined to have happened 45 minutes to 2 hours after the head wound.  There's no physical evidence suggesting John helped with the staging but he most certainly knew his wife was involved to some degree by morning.

Looking back now it's clear Patsy was medicated for many of the interviews & heavily sedated for others.  She also refused to take a polygraph test if the polygrapher drug tested.  (Benzos are known to help you pass a lie detector test by affecting memory, emotion & blood pressure).  Jonbenet's pediatrician brought a pocketful of Valium directly to Patsy the day her child was killed.  Imagine getting Schedule IV drugs from your kid's pediatrician...delivered to your house!  Was she still taking painkillers too?  We have no way of knowing.

See the source image
Looking a wee bit high...

The ransom note is another thing that suggests drug use or mania.  It's long, rambling & dramatic which instantly brought to mind images of a tweaker who doesn't know when to shut up.  Most ransom notes are short & sweet:  "Bring $____ (amount) to ____ (place) at ____ (time) or your kid dies."  But this one rambled on for 2.5 pages & was written on paper from inside the Ramsey home. This mindstate can be caused by mania OR the abuse of stimulants like meth, Adderall or ephedra based diet pills.  Or maybe just the mind of a histrionic journalism major & ex-pageant queen who was skilled in improvisation & wanted to prove a point.

Lastly, we can't overlook the severe effects of chemotherapy drugs on mood & behavior.  Patsy was taking Taxol, cisplatin & cyclophosphamide during her bout with cancer, which is a brutal combo.  Ovarian cancer patients often experience hormone-related mood swings due to the chemo & the removal of reproductive organs that produce hormones like estrogen & progesterone that regulate mood.  "Chemo brain" is a very real phenomenon among cancer patients of all kinds too; it entails cognitive impairment, problems with memory & brain fog.  Patsy's chemo ended in 1994 but the effects on the brain can take a long time to fade out...if they ever do completely.

Michael Piehl short film: "Who Killed Jonbenet Ramsey?" (2016)

So it looks like we have our killer then, right?  Wrong.  Since Patsy Ramsey died in 2006, a lot of people have been quick to put the blame on brother Burke, who was 9 years old when his sister was killed.  He did exhibit some troubling behaviors if the reports are accurate, such as smearing feces & being quick to anger.  Several books & TV specials have fingered Burke as the real killer, theorizing that he inflicted the head wound & his parents staged the kidnapping scene to cover for him.  But according to Colorado law, Burke wouldn't have been considered criminally responsible due to his age at the time anyway.  Even in that scenario, the parents still committed a crime by tampering with the body & misleading the police after the fact.  But they were never held legally accountable for any of it.  In my opinion, Burke was a victim in this tragedy along with his sister...even if he DID have something to do with her death.

But I don't think Burke did it--I still believe it was Patsy, possibly with some help from hubby John.  Filicides (parental child murders) are far more common than killing of a sibling by a pre-pubescent child.  Furthermore, Burke's "suspicious" behavior in interviews with the child psychologist looks like a kid who's been heavily coached on what NOT to say as well as being obviously led by the interviewer about the pineapple.  He appears socially uncomfortable & antsy like a boy who's either hyperactive or shy (or both).  Which fits perfectly as he has claimed publicly to have ADHD.  Plus he's talking about a highly unpleasant subject!

He comes across as awkward, sure, but have you SEEN his parents?  They've got to be the most shady acting people on the planet.  It's very likely genetic or learned behavior for Burke.  His mom also had that smug-looking smirk.  Burke was grinning from ear-to-ear leaving Jonbenet's funeral but he also did so at Patsy's funeral & on the Dr. Phil show, which points to either a nervous habit or some other benign reason.  To believe otherwise is to believe he was a 9-year-old evil genius capable of keeping the ultimate secret for all these years.  That's not how any of this works.

Burke = black eye?

I don't find any of the Ramseys to be true psychopaths or typical "evil" killers, though their behavior over the years has been repulsive in many ways.  They are egotistic to a fault & care more about their image than finding the killer of their daughter.  Always have.  No telling what the atmosphere was like in the home leading up to Christmas '96.  If Burke was living in an abusive or neglectful household, it's likely he would've been traumatized in the same ways as Jonbenet, who also had toileting issues right up until her death at age 6.  But for some reason, Burke's toileting/fecal issues are interpreted as acts of calculating aggression rather than a sign of maladjustment or an unhygienic sensory behavior.  Maybe they were a cry for help?  The possibilities are endless really.  In fact this is the first time I've EVER seen feces smearing in a child interpreted as a "sexual behavioral problem" as Chief Kolar calls it in his book (a great read by the way).  Nor are "sexual behavioral problems" included in the DSM-V, aka the Bible of psychiatry.  It's not a legit diagnosis.

I could go on & on about this case, as there's more info about it online than the JFK assassination.  But I just wanted to shine a light on Patsy's mental health & substance use since it seems to get overlooked in many discussions...and this is a blog about substances after all.  I also wanted to state publicly that the "Burke Did It" stuff is not a foregone conclusion.  Just because CBS did a special on it doesn't make it true.  For years the focus was on Patsy, then she died & people had to shift that rage onto someone who was still living to feel any hope of ever getting closure.  You can see the shift if you go back & read old True Crime forum posts from pre- vs. post-2006.

The only forensic evidence that exists besides the (useless) partial touch DNA (i.e. the red sweater fibers in the duct tape, beaver hair from Patsy's boots, the paintbrush used in the garrote & the inability to exclude her as the ransom note writer) points to Patsy.  There's literally zero forensic evidence pointing to Burke; only theories about how he acted oddly in interviews and the assumption that his parents would've divorced if one of them killed Jonbenet.  That's faulty logic though.  There are plenty of scenarios in which a partner might stay with a killer: denial, money, image, loyalty to a partner, fear, partial involvement in the crime, etc.  The sad fact is some parents truly don't love their kids more than themselves.

The real crime here is that two District Attorneys (Alex Hunter & Mary Lacy) as well as other people in power went out of their way to leak evidence to the Ramseys ahead of their police interviews & prevented police from pursuing them as suspects.  They let the Ramseys' lawyers set the terms for every interrogation & Alex Hunter--who had prosecuted a grand total of one case in his entire stint as Boulder DA--caved to the the Ramseys' prestigious lawyers in the end.  Hunter lied to the public & claimed there were no indictments by the grand jury in 1999 after months of tedious waiting, only to be proven a liar when the truth came out in 2013: the grand jury voted to indict BOTH parents on charges amounting to child neglect/endangerment! And the DA who followed him, Mary Lacy, went even further & "exonerated" the parents, offering a sniveling apology to them on the basis of touch-DNA fragments that she knew at the time might not even belong to a single individual or be relevant to the case at all...which she technically is not allowed to do with a cold case that she wasn't even involved in.  This points to more than incompetence or confirmation bias in my opinion:  it borders on prosecutorial malfeasance.

In the end, Patsy Ramsey didn't become Miss America but she did end up becoming (in)famous in her own way.  Before the Kardashians, the Ramseys were the first family to revel in bad attention if it meant getting a chance to look smart & act dramatic in front of a camera.  A real-life soap opera, as Patsy called it in one interview.  They were parodied harshly on shows like MadTV & South Park but that didn't deter them from putting out several books & continuing on their talk show tour.  In 2004, John Ramsey ran for office in Charlevoix, Michigan with Patsy by his side.  She finally got to play the role of his "Jackie Kennedy," a pet name he called her early in their courtship according to a Vanity Fair article.

He didn't win the election.  Patsy died of ovarian cancer in 2006.   

See the source image
Patsy at Jonbenet's grave in 2001
Meeting a "fan" in 2000
Image result for patsy ramsey cancer
Painting by Patsy shortly before dying
Related image
Patsy's icy mom, Nedra.
Image result for patsy ramsey burke jonbenet funeral
Patsy & Burke at Jonbenet's funeral
14 hours before Jonbenet's death (Christmas morning) 
Image result for patsy ramsey southern belle

Patsy Womens Magazine
Local Boulder magazine
Image result for patsy ramsey rare
...still looking stoned to the bone.
Image result for john ramsey campaign 2004
Addicted to the spotlight?  John's 2004 campaign.
Drama mama
Death grip

See the source image
Pam Paugh (Patsy's sister) Miss WV, 1980
See the source image
Candid shot of a kid being a kid.  R.I.P.  

Friday, January 18, 2019

George Clinton: P-Funk Pioneer & True Psychonaut

I wasn't too hip to George Clinton until recently watching some super fun documentaries on him.  We've all heard of the man, but few truly understand his impact on music unless they were alive at the time.  From the intricate concept art included on the album covers to the crazy costumes & characters and tight musicianship, Parliament Funkadelic & George Clinton are among the most influential artists in the 20th Century.  That's not an overstatement.  They are to modern urban music what Kraftwerk is to Electronic or what the New York Dolls are to Punk.  Their influence is written all over artists like Prince, OutKast and Digital Underground as well as "G-Funk" stars like Snoop Dogg/Dr. Dre/Nate Dogg that took their genre's name directly from "P-Funk".  Not to mention the countless artists who have sampled their music.

In his early career, George was trying to fit his octagonal self into a square hole along with slick & neatly-coiffed Motown artists, which quickly proved impossible.  He found himself more comfortable among California hippies, dropping acid & playing psychedelic tunes inspired by the Beatles & The Who.  He called this music "Funkadelic" & formed a trippy band in its honor on a separate label from his existing band "Parliament," which was more funky & horn-focused.  But there was great crossover between both bands, and they ended up playing together on stage during concerts in what appeared to onlookers to be a giant gathering of sexed-up hedonists or cult followers in Halloween get-ups.  Their blend of acid rock & wild funk proved too heavy for both Black and white audiences in the beginning.

George & his bandmates dove DEEP into every drug available at the time, from LSD & weed to heroin, Quaaludes, Valium & cocaine.  (George himself never touched heroin but had some bandmates who dabbled).  Despite this, they were extremely focused & prolific, releasing one album per band per year.  By the mid-70s, George had a number of side projects going, such as Brides of Funkenstein, Parlet, Bootsy Collins and Fred Wesley & The Horny Horns.  Rather than buy fancy cars for himself, George opted to invest in a 1,200 lb. "mothership" prop for his concerts which now rests in the Smithsonian & was unlike anything around at the time...or now.  The band had several smash hits in the '70s including "Flashlight," "Give Up the Funk (Tear the Roof Off the Sucker)" and "Up for the Down Stroke".  There was no questioning George Clinton was the reigning king of funk. He'd taken a genre that was looked down upon by "serious musicians" & made it the hip, cool thang that was inescapable particularly in the late '70s. There was just one problem:  he wasn't making any money.

The Mothership
By the dawn of the '80s, George was having major problems with his various record labels & artists (as is so often the case with musicians in the shady music industry).  He'd also developed a nasty crack habit that had killed his spirit, though it didn't stop him from making music.  He released several albums with his various bands, though they didn't make much of a dent in the charts until 1982's huge hit "Atomic Dog," his biggest success to that point.  He allegedly recorded the song while tweaked out on crack & didn't even know what he'd said on the track afterward.  He was just fulfilling an obligation to get it done.  That just speaks to his talent.  The song became an anthem for Black sexuality & a general party favorite.  This marked a comeback period for George.  He was able to put the crack aside long enough to tackle a number of other projects, including recording more solo albums, working with the Red Hot Chili Peppers & Prince and suing his record company for all the money he was owed from artists who were starting to heavily sample his work.  He didn't win & still fights for payment to this day.

George was arrested with a crack pipe in 2003 but is clean & sober today.  Well, except for his medical marijuana.  Funk is the only prescription he claims to need, though he has a hard time getting it filled these days.  Parliament released a new album in 2018 called Medicaid Fraud Dogg that's absolutely worth a listen.  The theme is all about Big Pharma screwing over America by making them dependent on their drugs--a very timely subject.  That's another awesome thing about the 78-year old: he's managed to stay relevant for over 45 years by changing up his style & content without betraying his roots or selling out.  Groovy.

George Clinton is probably the closest thing to my musical AND drug-taking idol if I had to choose one.  Ideally I'd like to take uppers for as long as possible & then switch to just weed when I'm elderly & my heart can't take it any more.  I'm not a fan of cocaine but do enjoy amphetamines in low doses & can appreciate the motivating & creative force they have.  Kratom is also kickass, as are all the other opiates I've tried.  I just have a lot of respect for a dude who can abuse the hell out of drugs while putting out such dope music for so many decades & not be too salty about getting screwed over by the business (though I'm sure he's plenty upset by it).  He's put out so much work for free essentially.  It's a crime that someone of his legendary status wouldn't be set for life just off the strength of his hit songs, let alone how much he's been sampled directly or ripped off.  Yet he continues to perform the old hits & put out new music with the enthusiasm of a young cat just getting his feet wet. 

We salute you, George. 


Related image  

Related image

Image result for funkadelic  

Image result for george clinton 1960s  

Wednesday, January 16, 2019

[Review] - Fashion Leaf Herb Grinder

Vendor:  Strong Wind
Location:  China
Price:  $2 + $1.80 shipping
Rating:  4.6 of 5 stars

$2 Herb Grinder. Yes, mon.

I'm a rather late adopter of new trends and this was my first purchase from, a website with dirt cheap products that mostly come from China.  I expected my order to take several months to arrive as that's the norm, but it came after less than a month which was pretty impressive during the holiday season.

The Fashion Leaf Herb Grinder (not the catchiest name) is a pretty standard weed grinder with two "levels": the grinding one & the one below that catches the ground up material on a screen.  It's 2 x 1.5 inch in size and made of stainless steel & hard plastic. The top closes tightly with a magnetic center which is pretty nifty.  I didn't get to choose the design but for $2, who's complaining?  The original price was $9.  It's definitely the cheapest piece of paraphernalia I've ever picked up & is no more shoddy than any other grinder I've had in the past (let's face it: most of our stuff is made in China anyway whether it ships directly from there or not).  They have a number of colors & designs including weed leaves, Bob Marley & Rastaman logos on red, black, yellow & green grinders.  They make great stocking stuffers or gifts for friends and you can't beat the price.

Inside view

Wednesday, January 9, 2019

Superdelegates and the Fracture of the Democratic Party

 Image result for republicrats

Note:  To any Republican or otherwise conservative readers I may have, forgive me if this bores you.  It's aimed at the liberal-leaning demographic; the Democratic Party in particular.  Actually you might find some of it agreeable since my goal is ripping them a new one.  😂

I scrolled past a post on Twitter the other day that contained a poll:  Which candidate should run for president in 2020?  There were 4 options, one of whom was Bernie Sanders.  The others are hazy but one of them was Joe Biden.  Biden won the poll by a landslide.  The man who proudly claimed to be "not a Jew but a Zionist at heart" and is known for doing exactly nothing in his 8 years as Vice President.  Mmmkay.  Bernie came in dead last with only 10% of the votes & some very offensive comments about how he was the only one they WOULDN'T vote for.  I bit my tongue.

A few days later I stumbled upon an even more troubling post that read:  "Dear liberals, can we all agree right here & now that, no matter who wins the Democratic nomination, we'll all vote for them to get Trump OUT?"  Again, several folks said they'd vote for anyone but Bernie Sanders but couldn't give a coherent answer as to why.  But it was the question itself that knocked the wind out of me.  Why should Americans settle for a crooked centrist as their Democratic nominee?  Why don't you give us something to vote FOR instead of against?  Fear shouldn't be the only motivating factor.  A candidate should earn every single vote they receive.  And those votes should come from the people--not shadowy elite entities like the Electoral College or superdelegates. 

There's so much talk blaming 3rd parties for Trump's win when that's not even what fucking happened.  Do people not know what the words "Electoral College" mean?  That's why Trump won.  Even if all of Jill Stein & Gary Johnson's fans voted for Clinton she still wouldn't have won.  Get it?  If mainstream Democrats had their way, they'd do away with 3rd parties & just crown someone like Clinton, Biden or some other wet noodle Wallstreet humper as king or queen of their party.  No need to vote--just let the superdelegates handle it. 

There's that word again:  superdelegates.  Those pesky shadow people whose votes count for more than regular voters.  According to this 2018 article in The Guardian, superdelegates are often associated with banks, big corporations & payday lenders.  That doesn't seem like a conflict of interest, does it?  Surely those types wouldn't be biased against someone like Sanders whose sole mission is taking down unscrupulous businesses & making corporations pay their fair share?  According to the same article, Sanders won the vote 44 to 39 in Indiana, but after the super delegates had their say, Clinton was given 46 delegates versus Sanders’ 44.  Ditto for New Hampshire.  Yet any time someone claims the Democratic primary of 2016 was "rigged," Clinton supporters shoot dissenters down & call them sore losers, telling them she won fair & square.  Mmmkay. 

THIS is where the claims of cheating & "rigged primaries" came from.  Clinton didn't technically rig it herself, but she benefited handsomely from a system that's set up to give the corporate darlings the nomination 100 times out of 100.  And let's not forget that whole Debbie Wasserman-Schultz email debacle.  After she was exposed for favoring Hillary & left the DNC, what does Clinton do?  HIRES HER TO JOIN HER CAMPAIGN.  But Bernie Sanders, Jill Stein & "Russia" are to blame for her loss?  Okay.  Couldn't have anything to do with her blatant & shameless corruption or anything.   /s 

The history of the superdelegate system is a sordid one.  First of all, the Republican party doesn't have them at all, likely because they don't need them since their voters don't tend to lean in a truly progressive direction to begin with.  The superdelegate system was instated after progressive candidate George McGovern slipped past Establishment control and won the Democrat Party nomination in 1972. The DNC had to ensure that this never happened again, so they tightened their stranglehold on the party by introducing superdelegates--people whose votes count for more than the rest of us. 
 Image result for 2-party system

If you're a loyal Democrat, you may be asking why the party that refers to itself as "liberal" or "left-leaning" would do such a thing.  The answer is simple:  we don't have a truly leftist, progressive party in this country.  We have moderate conservative (Democrat) and extremist conservative (Republican).  A truly progressive leftist party would support universal healthcare, affordable college education, ending wars for oil, environmental justice, fighting poverty & classism and labor laws that bring workers' rights up to par with other developed nations.  They would not accept handouts from Wallstreet or covertly wage wars around the globe with drones while spying on citizens at home.  They would stand up for our personal liberties & work toward prison reform, overturning non-violent convictions & instead filling the prisons with violent offenders like rapists, child abusers & murderers.  Not create a 3-Strikes Law like Bill Clinton did, which is responsible for locking up more non-violent (Black) people than any other single piece of legislation in American history.

So to answer OP's question:  No.  I won't be "voting blue" at the cost of my dignity.  I won't be voting green, red or any other color either unless that candidate wins my vote by talking the talk & walking the walk.  And neither should you.  That's how we end up with these shitty candidates in the first place.  Claiming that true progressive Democratic Socialists are 'Russian bots' is doing the Democratic party no favors.  It's intellectually lazy & is tearing the party apart even more than it already is.  The best move they could make is abolishing the superdelegate system & appointing unbiased people to the DNC--people without a favored candidate or hidden agenda.  One person = one vote needs to be the rule throughout the entire U.S. voting system, though I don't see the Electoral College going away anytime soon.  But we can start with our own so-called 'liberal' party & set a good example for how democracy can work when it's not corrupted by rigged primaries. 

Saturday, January 5, 2019

[Review] - Canna-Tsu Hemp Flower

Vendor:  naturescure101 (
Location:  Oregon, USA
Items:  Hemp flower (Canna-Tsu, Suver Haze, etc)
Rating:  4.5 of 5 stars

First review of 2019!  🎉

naturescure101's photo from eBay

I bought a gram of Canna-Tsu hemp bud on eBay for $8 + $3.50 recently from seller naturescure101 with leftover Christmas money.  It came in a vacuum sealed package (no smell!) with big fat buds.  Upon cutting a corner open, the smell of pine & dank was instantly apparent.  This stuff looks prettier than the actual weed in my state for what it's worth.  No seeds, few stems & not overly dry.  Definitely not cured but I can remedy that with a couple weeks in a jar.

Breaks up easily & smokes smoothly in a joint or pipe.  VERY smoothly.  The buds are fluffy & light as air which means you get a lot of them.  This particular batch of Canna-Tsu contains 14.78% CBD & 0.02% THC.  It came with a 3rd party lab test showing the cannabinoid levels, which comes in handy for legal reasons as well as quality assurance.  No psychoactive effects unless mixed with actual marijuana with THC but makes a much healthier joint filler than tobacco if you're trying to cut back.  The only negative I see about this strain is the slight brown tinge, which isn't as aesthetically appealing as it could be.  But it has absolutely no effect on quality or taste so it really isn't worth mentioning.  These are beautiful hemp buds at a great price.

I look forward to seeing more hemp of this grade on the market since the passage of the 2018 Farm Bill (hemp was already technically legal, but now that there are headlines reading "Trump Legalizes Hemp! more people are aware).  It's great for migraine prevention, insomnia & other ailments and MUCH cheaper than various CBD products.  Plus you get the whole spectrum of cannabinoids like terpenes & CBN/G/C for a more balanced effect.  However, if you're expecting to always be able to buy hemp from sites like eBay, don't hold your breath.  Payment processors like Paypal often refuse to allow items like hemp & kratom even if they're 100% legal.  But there are plenty of other private websites & companies that sell hemp so don't despair.  Gotta tighten up your Google-Fu to find them.

That Time I Tried: 4-HO-MET

I first tried 4-HO-MET around 2012 during the absolute pinnacle of the research chemical Golden Era (2010-2015).  It was the 2nd psychedelic...