Today is April twenty or 4/20 and I am sure you hearing the term 420 all over. Most people knows that means something to do with cannabis. And maybe something to do with time or a date to smoke cannabis. Or that on April 4th is the day of the year for cannabis smokers to celebrate their love of cannabis. But the question is why is 420 so important to people who use cannabis? There are many different things people say are the reasons why there is a connect between 420 and cannabis. Some things I have heard over the years include but are not limited to things like: That is how many chemicals are in the plant (there is over 400 different chemicals in cannabis but not 420 exactly), 420 started out as the police code for cannabis smoking in progress (Wrong!), or that it is because it was Hilter’s birthday (never saw this connection to cannabis but it is something anti-cannabis people use). None of these reasons or many of the other reason people come up with are not the true Origin story of how 420 became connected to cannabis.
So then what is the Origin Story of 420? Well it is not what you might expect or maybe you know it already. The term 420 has a small humble start in the early 1971. It starts with a group of teenagers that go to Rafael High School; the group of teens called them selves the waldos because they would hang out around the wall at school. The Waldos did not come up with the term intending it to become the symbol of all cannabis users world wide
What happened was on fall day in 1971 one of the Waldos gets their hands on a hand drawn map that leads to treasure. The treasure of the green kind. It was a map to a field of cannabis. As all the Waldos were athletes so they decided to meet up at the statue of Louis Pasteur that was at the front of the school at 4:20, so they could go follow their treasure map and pluck off some free buds. All day they would remind each other when they would see each other in the halls with 4:20-Louis or just 4:20. They do meet up at 4:20 and search for this hidden patch of cannabis growing somewhere in the California forests and they did this week after week. Always meeting at 420-Louis. Unfortunately they never did find the field of cannabis. But they ended up coining the phrase 420.
The term go passed around from the Waldos to their friends and the friends of friends and so on. Until it reached the Grateful Dead and they grabbed onto the term 420 and fliers would be passed around the before the concerts that said “we are going to meet at 4:20 on 4/20 for 420ing in Marin County at the Bolinas Ridge sunset spot on Mt. Tamalpais.” This flier got into the hands of a High Times reporter Bloom. The reported grabbed this flier and in 1991 issue of High Times reported his findings on 420, exposing the term 420 to the broader cannabis culture. The flier even came with a back story of how the term 420 can about. Not the story of the Waldos but one about how it was the police code for smoking cannabis…This was an incorrect back-story as California never had a police code of 420 in the 70’s. The Waldos have been able to prove their story with old letters, notes and even an old flag all with 420 referencing 420.
Now that the true story of where the term 420 came from and remember to:
“Spread Cannabis Knowledge!”