Blunt Take: Are Cannabis Users Who Dab Superhuman?

Some cannabis lovers fall apart when they dab. Others do it all day long. What gives?
Some cannabis lovers fall apart when they dab. Others do it all day long. What gives? /

If you've ever come across some crazy bastard on the streets of Anywhere, USA rambling incessantly about how a gang of aliens abducted them from their bedroom and then shot them back down to the parking lot of a 7-Eleven to preach about the second coming of the Devil, well, you, my friends, may have witnessed someone who's on dabs. 

Although cannabis itself isn't likely to turn even the most unstable person into a stark raving lunatic, like meth and other sketchy hard drugs, the mad scientists producing it in concentrated forms – the fastest growing segment of the weed market today -- have seemingly given the pothead population the frazzled fuel it needs to transform what's left of civil society into a bunch of slobbering imbeciles.

Seriously, man, how high does a person need to get? Over the years, politicians and health officials have been screaming about how the weed today is so much stronger than the stuff from the 1960s, but these fools don't know the half of it. 

Cannabis dabs are the epitome of pot power, arguably more potent than an amalgamation of the weed of the ‘60s, the bud we have now, and the strains they'll undoubtedly produce in the future. It's almost as if the scientific stoner wasn't content with knowing that weed couldn't kill a person dead, so they just had to try. One day, mark my words, we're going to hear about some poor schlub found dead next to a dab rig.

Fear & Loathing in Dab Land

Does all this sound far-fetched? Well, don’t take my word for it. I recently talked to a 43-year-old financial advisor named Ken who was convinced he was about to become the first person in high history to die from marijuana. 

The scare happened during a weekend boat trip about two summers ago. But his death wasn't going to be from some plain old, leafy green. Nope, the culprit in this toker tale from the crypt was shatter, splatter or ball batter, whatever the kids call it these days. 

"I've been a daily smoker since I was in my teens but had never done a dab hit until then," he told The Bluntness

Ken's harrowing story began as an act of kindness. He noticed some kids were having car trouble up the road from his cabin, so he stopped to offer his assistance. It wasn’t anything serious, just a dead battery. Ken gave them a jump, and they were soon on their way. But not before showing their appreciation. "They offered me a couple of hits," he recalls. "I just expected to get high."

For those who aren't familiar with cannabis dabs, maybe we should put it into perspective before diving into what happened to Ken next. If weed is the domestic beer of cannabis, dabs are moonshine. And not the pretty packaged stuff you can get now from your local liquor store. We're talking about the high-octane fire water brewed by hillbillies in the foothills of Appalachia.

No sir, dabs aren't for the faint of heart, or anyone who doesn't want to be transformed into the waxy equivalent of a mumbling mud puddle. Sure, some people can handle moonshine, but some can't. 

Ken found out that summer, when it comes to cannabis dabs, the hardest hitting high available in the weed genre right now, he can't. "It didn't hit me right away," he said. "I drove my truck back to the cabin to meet up with my buddy, and before I got there, I got really hot and there was something wrong with my vision. For a minute there, I thought I was going blind."

Inside the cabin, Ken's buddy eagerly awaited his return. The two had dinner plans to cap off a long day of boating. "By the time I got inside, I lost the ability to stand on two feet," Ken said. "I was in and out of consciousness, too, and my buddy thought that someone had roofied me. I was nodding in and out. I eventually puked and passed out in the bathroom. Needless to say, we never made it to dinner."

Okay, Mike, that was an isolated incident. Ken’s a lightweight, a putz. We would tend to agree, but many others we talked to on this issue shared in his awful experience. 

Take Chris, a musician from Southern Indiana, for example. He didn’t make it to dinner either after his dab debut. And to make matters worse, he lost his lunch. "I took one pull of this guy’s rig, and the shit hit the fan," he recalled. 

"Thirty seconds later, the lights dimmed, and I started sweating profusely. I stood up, immediately fell into a door, hit the ground, crawled to a bucket in our rehearsal space, vomited, and then passed out using my pedal board as a pillow. Never again," he concluded.

Diehard cannabis aficionados might be quick to argue that Ken's and Chris's reaction to doing dabs was caused by a lack of experience in the extract arts. And there might be something to that. But their experience isn't uncommon. 

In the past month, I've interviewed two seasoned musicians, both of whom have an extensive resume within the drug culture. Both claim the Devil is in dabs. Blothar the Berserker of GWAR likens them to smoking crack, adding that getting high in this manner is a hassle. “There are too many steps,” he declared. 

Meanwhile, Amigo the Devil, who told me that a tiny dab hit put him underneath the merch table before a show in Tulsa, Oklahoma, claims anyone who can do them and remain functional is superhuman.

Others tend to agree.

"Dabs are for sadists," a man named Rick tells us. "They're only good if you want to slip into a coma."

The Secret to Regular Dabbing?

On the flip side, not everyone has such a nightmarish response to cannabis extracts. In fact, a lot of cannabis users prefer them to traditional flower. For some, the basis for that preference is because they are patients in need of pain relief, while others just like to get as high as humanly possible. 

However, these seasoned pros must know a secret to smoking dabs that the novices aren't privy to. No way they are dabbing night and day and not going off the deep end. Still, many claim they do it regularly, and they haven’t gone psychotic yet! They argue there's no secret to surviving concentrates. The idea that it is akin to crack, they claim, isn't an accurate portrayal.

Most pros argue that if there is a secret, it is all about building tolerance. "I smoke dabs all day long," a Bluntness reader named Stacy told us. "Like with anything, the more you do it, the more you can do. Once you start smoking them all day, they don't do as much. You get a crazy tolerance."

So, let's get this straight. The trick to finding some reprieve from the reefer sweats, spastic reactions, and sudden dread that dabs often provide the inexperienced user is to just keep smoking them until it is no longer a horrifying affair. If you ask a skilled dabber, using concentrates is like working out. Keep showing up at the gym daily and lifting heavy things; eventually, the muscle will come. 

Only, going to the gym has never been referred to as the crack of anything. 

No thanks, I'll pass. All of you stoned superheroes, go ahead and flaunt your capes. You deserve them. I, on the other hand, won't be needing one. No offense, but I'm sticking with the less violent stuff. Hey, I don't drink moonshine either. I’ll keep moderating the herb the way the gawds of the green universe intended, without the sweats, the pukes or the hassle. 

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