How’s it goin’?

Ngaio Bealum is a Sacramento comedian, activist and marijuana expert. Email him questions at

Colorado and Washington have legalized marijuana for adults. How is that going?


It’s going quite well, actually. The Colorado task force assigned to come up with recommendations for marijuana regulation has just ended, and the recommendations are now in committee. There should be a bill on the floor in a few months. Washington is still looking for a “marijuana czar,” but the delay has been because it has received a ton of applications for the position.

The feds have not yet responded. U.S. Attorney General Eric H. Holder Jr. has said that the Department of Justice is close to making an announcement. Some legislators have expressed support for upholding Colorado and Washington state law. Congresswoman Nancy Pelosi had this to say to The Denver Post: “[T]o answer your question, what is my position regarding the states that have medical marijuana or recreational marijuana as the law of their states: I think that has to be respected. I think tax and regulate.”

Her statement should give hope to people in California that if we do pass a cannabis-legalization measure, there will be support in Washington, D.C.

So far this year, there have been 11 states that introduced medical-marijuana legislation, and about six more states have made attempts at decriminalization. The tipping point of the tipping point has been reached. If we go hella hard right now, we could see full-on nationwide legalization by 2016-2020.

Is it true that you either have to have your grow shielded by lead or buried 15-feet underground to keep federal agents from peering in your room? If so, why? What else can you do to shield yourself?


Yes. Yes, you do. But the most important thing to remember is to keep your tinfoil hat in a tricornered shape. A round shape doesn’t scramble the gamma rays they use to track us through the fillings in our teeth. That’s why flossing is important. If you don’t have fillings, they can’t track you.

In all seriousness, the best thing to do is to keep your garden low-key. Not everyone needs to know you are growing the crazy-fire O.G. at your house. Make sure you are on good terms with your neighbors, and if you are growing indoors, add an extra filter to minimize odor. The biggest threats to small grows are pissed-off neighbors and petty thieves. Keep everything cool, and you should be fine.

If you are growing more than 200 plants, then, yes, you should grow in an underground bunker. Preferably one with lead shielding, a holodeck and a danger room.