Newbie’s Guide to Toking With Friends

Newbie’s Guide to Toking With Friends

If you’re about to embark on your first group marijuana experience, there is some standard etiquette to keep in mind. The most important rule is to be prepared. 

First, know the people you’ll be with, especially if you don’t know your tolerance levels. You will want to be with people you trust to help you manage the possible anxiety or paranoia that are sometimes side effects of smoking marijuana. Choose a small group in a safe place, like your own home of that of a trusted friend, for your first excursion -- stay away from large events. Knowing you have a safe place stay or how you will get home are critical factors.  Once these details are handled, the following rules will help you politely navigate the process.

The Roller Goes First

The person who rolls the joint, regardless of whose weed it is, sparks it and gets the first puff.  If it’s nicely done, be sure to compliment his or her rolling skills.  Likewise, if using a pipe, the person who fills it goes first.

Puff, Puff, Pass

As a newbie, it’s advised to observe this practice when smoking a joint. Two puffs (with or without an exhale in between), then pass to the left.  

  • Passing to the left – There are multiple explanations for this, ranging from it being a “Rastafarian Custom” to the assumption that, since most are right-handed, you are handing off the joint to the next person’s most nimble hand. 
  • Customs vary – Groups often develop their own systems. If it’s a particularly fat joint, it may be acceptable to take multiple hits before passing on. Or, a group may pass to the right. After your first puff-puff-pass, follow the lead of the group.
  • Don’t be so enamored with the story you are telling that you forget to pass to the next person. This is called “Bogarting,” named after Humphrey Bogart’s tendency to let a cigarette dangle between his lips while he talked.
  • Right or left, just be sure to remember the rotation.
  • When using a pipe or bong, one puff.
  • Pass the lighter along with the pipe or bong.

No Slobbering or Biting

  • There’s not much more disgusting than finding someone else’s slobber on a joint or mouthpiece. If you have chronic wet mouth, wipe your lips and curl them inward before toking. The joint should never come in contact with the wet part of your mouth.  
  • Biting or chewing the end of a joint makes it hard for the next person to pull a draw. 
  • While “baptizing” a joint (wetting it with saliva before smoking) may make it burn longer, it is not appropriate for group toking.
  • Bringing along water or soda is an important precaution for drymouth. However, be sure to follow the wipe-curl-lips rule before toking after a drink.

Don’t Blow Smoke

Never blow smoke in someone else’s face---even when everyone is smoking it is considered rude.

Offer Again

If someone passes on a turn, don’t assume he or she will pass on the next round. Offer again. 

  • Don’t insist, though, if someone opts out. And keep your comments to yourself – don’t make anyone feel uncomfortable.

Be Conscious of Your Surroundings

Do not be the person who, when on a foray to the convenience store for munchies, feels compelled to announce how high you are. 

  • If you are in someone’s home, be respectful and don’t act as though your munchies entitle you to everything in the fridge or cupboard.  
  • Better yet, bring gift munchies with you.
  • Never pretend to be more high than you really are. 
  • If you make a mess, clean it up. Spill the bong water? Clean it up and refill the bong. Inadvertently blow ash? Clean it up. Knock over the pretzels? Pick them up. Appropriately toss whatever trash is left after you satisfy the munchies.

Be Honest

If you don’t know how to roll a joint, don’t pretend you can. If you don’t think you can manage lighting the bowl, ask someone else to do the job.

Don’t Be a Moocher

People will tolerate your newbie status for only so long – ultimately you will be expected to provide the weed for the group. Until then, bringing munchies to share will be greatly appreciated. 

Don’t Toke and Tell

Who you smoked with last night is nobody’s business unless they were there.

Sometimes, Sharing Is Wrong

If you are ill, don’t pass your problems on to the circle.  If you’re sick and want to smoke with friends, bring a personal pipe or vaping device.

Say Thank You

Always thank the person who supplied the smoke and the person who hosted the event.

For information about cannabis strains for your gathering, please visit the Strain Directory.