Just a mere week into a fresh new semester at the University, and already the stress is palpable. The middle-of-the-week bar nights and endless hours of “Sopranos” DVD-watching of our paltry ‘welcome week’ is over. But before you get yourself sucked into your next No Doz-fueled highlighting binge, perhaps you should treat yourself to a break. Suggestion: Instead of that pesky Econ homework, crack open a book on everyone’s favorite herb. Preston’s book is the latest journalistic foray into illicit botany and worldwide.
“Pot Planet” is a sort of contemporary “Around the World in 80 Days” with a wee bit o’ reefer to make globetrotting even sweeter. Written by Vancouver native Brian Preston, a frequent contributor to the likes of Playboy, Vogue and Rolling Stone, the book takes its readers on a fun jaunt through the journalist’s hometown and a host of exotic locales such as Morocco, Nepal and of course, stoner friendly Amsterdam. The tone of the book is lighthearted yet distinctly professional – a unique feature in the annals of drug-related literature.
Most teetotalers of THC will probably assume that Preston’s unadorned travel narrative is simply another cheap druggie’s trip report. But “Pot Planet” is actually a truly fascinating look at the most pot friendly cultures of the world. “High Times” it most certainly is not. In fact, after a few short chapters, readers will find that the book is mainly centered on the serious cultural features of the countries that are discussed. Preston speaks warmly of his varied diverse collection of marijuana smokers, most of whom are greatly educated and generally respectable members of society who simply like to enjoy the gentle benefits of the plant.
Particularly enlightening are Preston’s discussions on rapidly easing marijuana restrictions. He focuses mainly on the significant reforms of his home in British Columbia, bringing to the surface developments that are currently taking place just a bit to our north. Equally interesting are his accounts of quasi-religious cannabis use in Southeast Asia and the new “caf