In the wake of my disgust at the ShopFuck Fest happening all around us—the annual bankmall orgy that leaves medical marijuana horny and alone at the bar at closing time, scanning the crowd for someone to take home—I realized I had make a mistake. (See "Ban on Business," Dec. 1.)
Not being in the mood for casual shopsex and bitter over our culture's imposed financial Holiday Stress, I overlooked an important fact when I wrote about the jizz at the mall: Pot might not be in the bankmall party, but it turns out there's plenty of medical-marijuana shoplovin' out there if you know where to look. So I looked a little.
Here are a few examples:
Sea of Green
This indoor growers' paradise started in downtown Phoenix in 1992 and has since expanded to Tempe, Flagstaff and Tucson. There are two stores in the Old Pueblo—at 402 N. Fourth Ave. and 7955 E. Broadway Blvd.
The Fourth Avenue stalwart offers plenty for the 13,631 MMJ patients statewide who have asked to grow their own (as of Nov. 25; see The Range at daily.tucsonweekly.com for more information).
Offerings behind the jungle in the familiar Fourth Avenue window include everything you need to grow MMJ: lights, containers, hydroponic media, soil, additives, pumps and timers—and carbon filters for odor control in case you don't want your nosy neighbors to know about the grow room in your apartment.
Gifts range from less than $10 to the thousands for complete systems.
At the top of my Sea of Green list? A $410 hydro system for eight plants, complete with lights, pots, substrate, nutrients, pumps, watering and light timers—everything you need. (OK, baby ... I know you're reading this. I take back what I said about needing an iPad.)
Now we're starting to edge out of shopfuck and into gentle caress.
You don't have to smoke your MMJ out of a cheap one-hitter that looks like a cigarette; give the MMJ patient in your life a piece of art instead.
Micah Blatt's glass art shop at 513 N. Fourth Ave. is a wonderland of swirling, glittery goodness for MMJ smokers. The shop offers handmade pipes, water pipes and bubblers—most blown right at the front window of the store—in every shape, size and color.
Prices range from less than $10 to hundreds for large, elaborate glass pieces.
Arizona Department of Health Services
If you have potential MMJ patients on your gift list, you could give the gift that keeps on giving—like sex you think about all through the coming year: Give them an MMJ card from the Arizona Department of Health Services, which would entitle your loved ones to an entire year of accessible, affordable relief from what ails them.
Now that is some serious shoplovin'.
When all the costs are combined, an MMJ card costs in the neighborhood of $300, more if you need a diagnosis. That's a pretty awesome stocking stuffer. You could even fill out the initial paperwork, if you know the details, then print the forms (medicalmarijuana.azdhs.gov) and wrap them up all neat and tidy under the holiday symbol of your choice. I use a tree.
So in the end, I find that I don't have to go to the ShopFuck Festival at all. I don't need to get bankmall jizz all over me while I buy cheap crap from foreign nations. I can give real money to local people in stores that keep cash closer to home.
Who needs a shopfuck orgy anyway? It's better when it means something.