Sunday, March 26, 2017

Science in Action: The Lemon Drop Experiment

The last time we were in Grand Junction, my sister asked if we were interested in trying some "edibles." As the whole world knows, recreational marijuana is legal in Colorado. Local pot shops sell a variety of products, both edibles (gummies, hard candies, cookies, you name it) and the traditional weed. Except, of course, the traditional weed is nothing at all like we aging Baby Boomers may recall from our misspent youths. Some strains are now so potent that the Budtender* won't sell it to you if you can't convince him or her that you're an experienced smoker. But I digress.

Nerf said they had two lemon drops left, edibles sold as The Puckers. According to the label, each sour lemon drop contained 10 mg of THC. (And, yes, that is a child proof cap on the bottle.) The lemon drops had been purchased out of curiousity. She and her husband had given half a dozen to her father-in-law to see if they would help with his chronic pain. He reported that they didn't do much for the pain, but he did get a definite case of the munchies. Nerf's personal experience was that she felt really, really paranoid. Her husband's reaction had been, in essence, meh.

So we said, sure, we'll try them. The S.O. gets aches and pains in one leg, the one an Air Force surgeon left a foreign object in, so maybe it would help with that. And I do get occasional back aches. What the heck, what did we have to lose?

We were warned that with edibles it can take a couple of hours before you notice anything. The S.O. took one about 2:15 in the afternoon and then went out to read in the lawn chair for awhile. After some time passed, I asked if he noticed anything different. Nope. My observation was that he was sliding progressively lower in the lawn chair and seemed to doze off for awhile, but that was about it. He later said that he did feel kind of light headed when he stood up, but nothing too dramatic.

So then it was my turn. In the interest of science, I tried to eat the lemon drop about the same time in the afternoon as the S.O. Conditions were slightly different, though. I wasn't relaxing in a lawn chair; I was on a couch watching television. Both the Kid and the S.O. kept asking if I'd noticed anything yet. Nope. Nope. Nothing yet. Then Ellen DeGeneres introduced a guest on her show, a teacher and softball coach, who had suffered great personal hardship but still managed to keep coaching the girls' softball team. It was one of those tear jerkers of a story, a multiple-tissue tale, one that has the studio audience sobbing and tears running ankle deep in the aisles. You know, really heart-breaking but at the same time inspirational.

It was also the funniest thing I'd ever seen. I got hit by the giggles so hard I couldn't sit up. If I hadn't been clinging to the S.O. as I giggled uncontrollably, I'd have been on the floor. The Kid is always lecturing me about not drinking enough water. That's one day when she should have been really happy my bladder was empty.

After the giggling fit passed, I noticed The Kid's candy bowl was filled with Hershey's Kisses. I think you can guess how I spent the rest of the afternoon. Eat some chocolate, giggle some more, eat some chocolate, giggle. The expressions on the Kid's face were priceless. She kind of alternated between appalled and disbelief.

Scientific conclusion: based on what is admittedly a statistically insignificant sample, it would be difficult to prescribe marijuana to cure specific ills. It's obvious every user is going to have an idiosyncratic reaction. The one consistent effect seems to be it does stimulate a person's appetite, which can be important for people who have trouble eating for various reasons, but other than that? The only way to figure out if it's going to work for whatever ails you is to try it. If you're lucky, it will.

Personal conclusion: now that we're back in Colorado, I may go looking the place that sells the sour lemon drops. If hard candy got me giggling at a man who almost died from a particularly painful form of cancer, maybe it can help me survive the Trump presidency.

*Genuine job tile. Honest.


  1. I split a doobie with a friend..hoping it would make me sleep..I spent the entire night laying awake worried that I would forget how to swallow..or breathe..not our old hippy weed that's for sure.

  2. Try the brownies. ... I've never tried any eatables but a few puffs doesn't give me the munchies. Interesting stuff but never got that interested in it.

  3. Edible pot is like flavored vodka - What's next flavored Irish Whiskey, or candy beer? Smoking pot was a time and an era of our generation, and the younger generations today that have sprout cell phones as a new appendage have totally missed the point.

    You are right, though, it is stronger. It has a lot to do with what's going on - hanging with buds and passing the joint is the best effect.
    the Ol'Buzzard

    1. Apples and oranges. People don't use edibles for social reasons; they're more likely to be interested in the medicinal effects of THC, like relieving menstrual cramps or to help with chronic pain.


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