Books, Bongs, and THC Sticks 

This holiday season, medical cannabis products come unbound.

The year 2011 will go down as the year the federal government once again declared war on medical marijuana. However, the medical marijuana movement remains rather undeterred. In fact, medical cannabis seems to be on an inexorable course toward greater acceptance, as the science and technology around the plant grows up. Legalization Nation presents some examples from the 2011 holiday gift season:

Medical Marijuana 101

By Dale Gieringer


Proponents of the Regulate Marijuana Like Wine voter initiative are collecting signatures to get on the 2012 California ballot. According to field reports, voters are saying "just legalize it already" and asking for talking points. Here's one: Smart people can barely make sense of the laws around medical marijuana in California much less keep pace with the fast-moving industry. So Dale Gieringer, head of the California chapter of National Organization for the Reform of Marijuana Laws, penned this 88-page guide to the drug's safe and legal use. Published in the East Bay by Quick American this year, it's sort of a CliffsNotes for therapeutic cannabis, debunking 75 years of government propaganda. The drug is a natural medicine that's been used for centuries, and in 2009 the American Medical Association officially endorsed its value. This fall, the California Medical Association also called for outright legalization to better study the plant. Buy the book and upgrade a loved one's gray matter.

Porsche Shisha


In America, when people call Kim Kardashian dumb, her fans counter, "Then why does she have all that money?" Take the unassailable intellectual high ground in any discussion with Porsche's $2,000 water bong, er, stainless steel hookah. Available at Harrods, perhaps for the Pixar exec that has everything, the Shisha unites purist design with German-manufactured high-end aluminum, stainless steel, and glass. It stands 22 inches tall and comes with a TecFlex tub, with the smallest of Porsche branding along the top rim.

Gentlemen's THC Stick


"THC pens and cartridges" have rapidly proliferated this year. They're just like "e-cigarettes" in that they're shaped like a Bic pen and users puff on one end. The inhaling action triggers a battery-powered vaporization unit, which in the case of e-cigarettes vaporizes a nicotine solution. The tail end lights up for effect, and the puff of nicotine vapor dissipates so fast that some people think it's socially acceptable to use indoors. (It's not.) It was just a matter of time before the idea was ported to medical cannabis. The Apothecarium in San Francisco is one of many clubs branding its own model: It calls it the Gentlemen's THC Stick. The kit runs $99 and comes with a strong- and a light-hitting THC Stick. Cartridges last for dozens of hits and come in about six strains including a CBD-rich type. Refill cartridges cost $39.

420 Science Large Glass Jar


So you got a $2,000 Porsche bong and you're still using plastic baggies? Long-term storage requires glass, as cannabis is a bit acidic and can degrade plastic. Manufactured in North America, the 420 Science Large Glass Jar with pop-top holds up to one half-ounce. It's made of air-tight, clear glass, with a gasket ring that creates a "pop" when you open it.

420 Portable 100X LED Scope


There's no FDA or USDA for ganja. So take inspection into your own hands with this powerful handheld microscope. Also from 420 science, it uses strong LED light and a powerful lens to magnify objects sixty to one-hundred times. It works much like a jeweler's loop — just affix your eye to the business end and check out product for bugs, mold, mildew, and potency, or just gawk at the alien world of high-quality cannabis up close.

Vsyndicate Grinder Card


Bay Area cannabis aficionados use grinders. And those who've misplaced their grinder use grinder cards. Possibly the perfect convention booth freebie, it's a metal business card with a bunch of holes punched into it. In the case of the popular Vsyndicate grinder cards, the holes are in the shape of a V. Use it like a cheese grater or a kitchen mandolin to slice, zest, and strain. Mostly, 'heads use it to stylishly shred up sticky buds for use in vaporizers, joints, blunts, etc. The Vsyndicates come in four different textures, with a bunch of cheesy graphics. But they're easy to use and won't chop a finger off. Which is nice.

Doob Tube

5 for $5.99

People are still blown away by these things. They're small, thin plastic tubes with a plastic smush-down top. Northern California dispensaries sell pre-rolled cone joints in them. They're airtight, odor proof and waterproof, which makes them perfect for a long holiday night out, because no one wants to nib on a ratty, crunched-up joint. They're also perfect for adventurous outdoors trips and can withstand an absent-minded river dip, or a day of powder boarding. It's 4 1/8 inches long, so it'll hold a blunt. Frequently asked questions on the website include: "If I have a half-burned fatty, will anybody smell it?" The answer: No. Capping a lit fatty in a Doob Tube extinguishes it and the smell. Handy!


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