The Meaning of Greens

This piece of folklore is actually a custom among Marijuana smokers. This custom states that whenever it is someone’s first time smoking that they get to “greens.” Greens is basically a name for a custom where a person gets to light the marijuana first whether it be in a pipe or a rolled up joint. My informant states that he heard this through his friend who is a big fan of marijuana. He states that offering the person who either put the weed in the pipe or rolled a joint is a huge deal and demonstrates a large amount of respect for the person that did the tasks.

He states that greens is important to smokers as it demonstrates their kindness and also is a common courtesy for guests when the smoke for the first time or smoke with the group for the first time. He states that it is comparable to offering someone a drink of water when they enter your home. He also states that by explaining greens and passing it on, that everyone now is a part of it and keeps the cycle going.

I think this is a very interesting piece of folklore due to the stereotypes users of marijuana have in our culture. They are known as lazy and selfish people, yet this illustration demonstrates that friendship and courtesy that there is in smoking. It is also interesting that the drug culture always seem to have rituals or ways of order to not mess something up. It basically proves that among drug users that there is a personal courtesy or secrecy among them, thus users can decipher first timers from consistent users easily. For example if a first-timer did not offer greens or did not know what greens was.