The Cannabis Companion: The Ultimate Guide to Connoisseurship
by Steven Wishnia
“…I still get high, and I’m sick and tired of being treated like a criminal.” In the author’s intro, the mantra of The Cannabis Companion stands clear: this book aims to rest alongside the National Geographics and Georgia O’Keefe glossies that sit atop Pottery Barn coffee tables across America. Steven Wishnia wants pot to join the mainstream, and if ever anyone new to marijuana was looking for a book about pot at Barnes & Noble, this would be the one they would pick up. But beware seasoned smokers — this book is stuffed with bits of info on lots of subjects, but does not delve too deep into the science and nature that is weed. If you’re reading High Times every month, leave this pot book on the shelf. It’s for the curious dabbler.
Still, the complete design of the book — smooth heavy stock, Warhol-like pot leaf cover art, lots of color photos — makes this volume easy to look at and a real pleasure to read. Mr. Wishnia starts with a cultural history of weed, quoting the Atharva Veda, a sacred text from India on the “science of charms,” in referring to marijuana as a herb that “releases us from anxiety.” Indian legends, ancient tombs discovered to hold the remains of hash, the widespread use of hemp in North America, and the famous story that George Washington grew weed (he grew hemp) gives the reader a blanket historical view of cannabis and its uses.
There are brief chapters on seeds, growing methods, and the true love of every pothead, the strains, which include descriptions and color pics of some of the most popular strains, such as G-13 and White Widow. For those of you who have spent hours poring over the Cannabibles and Big Buds 1 & 2, this book will disappoint.
Some good soundin’ recipes like “Growers’ Guacamole” and “Six-Pepper Rasta Pasta” give the reader different options to enjoy their ganja. Some smoking tips, a chapter on pot’s special little ingredient, THC, and an easy step-by-step guide on how to roll a blunt are included for the reader’s pleasure, ’cause you know it’s hard out here for a pimp.
The Cannabis Companion tells the story of ganga in all its varieties and uses in a well-mannered, well-manicured fashion, all the while holding firm to the author’s obvious belief that marijuana varieties should be sold at gourmet stores alongside the best wines and cheeses. Though this book is not the “ultimate guide” to becoming a bona fide pothead, it does serve its purpose as an all-around guide to learning about that dubious weed called “cannabis.” Add it to your must-have weed books? Nah. Add it to your “To Give” list this Xmas? Aunt Linda is gonna love it.
Running Press: www.perseusbooksgroup.com/runningpress