My Spannabis Experience | High Times

Barcelona… what a beautiful city. With such a rich cultural heritage there’s amazing food, amazing people – it’s incredible.

This was my first voyage to Spannabis since 2019, and while a lot of things have changed, many have stayed the same. The main consistency is the fact that weed is still very much illegal. Even though Barcelona has evolved into a micro California, with many of the most desired major brands in the world available at most social clubs, that does not mean that people can freely move like they do in California.

Fun fact: Police do not need probable cause to search you there. According to Spanish law, the use of cannabis products is decriminalized for personal cultivation and use, and some other purposes except sale or trade. It is illegal for trade, or commercial purposes. That means you can not smoke on the street, or have any amount of anything on you. At the very least, you’ll catch a fine, but they have been known to lock us up for a bit to teach us a lesson. Spanish legislation states that the consumption or possession of “toxic drugs, narcotics or psychotropic substances, even if they are not intended for trafficking, in places, roads, establishments public or public transport” is considered as a serious offense, and imposes a fine ranging from €600-30,000.

One night, the police tried to gang-stalk me at 3 AM while I was walking 3 meters from my taxi into my Airbnb. I saw them coming down my street, flip a bitch, and park not far from me. I already had my keys in hand, and I heard them whistle the way a construction worker would catcall a woman on the street. I, of course, did not look up, and in fact have never opened a door so quickly in my life. I ran up the stairs and proceeded to look out of my window to see them posted looking up at my building. I only had a personal amount on me, but I would much rather spend that €600 on more constructive things… not to mention my idea of personal use might not fit their criteria of the term. What a strange little game of cat and mouse.

According to the powers of the internet, there are over 450 cannabis social clubs across Spain, and they are supposed to be for residents only. That means it’s not actually legal for tourists. While I very much enjoy smoking at these places, I much prefer them when every clout jockey from around the globe is not also present.

Honestly everything about this series of events is absolute madness, which is not a bad thing, but can be a lot. I personally enjoyed all of the excitement. Let’s get into it.

Strange Seeds

Spannabis is an event that attracts not only the best breeders in the world, but also the shadiest, no integrity having salesmen that would re-rock their own mothers for a few bucks over that three day weekend in Europe.

My personal highlights were meeting @karmagenetics, @grounded_genetics, and seeing my friends @ciphergenetics, @nyceeds718, @piffcoastfarms, @fidelsworldwide, @serge_cannabiss, @terphogz_offficial, @doja.pak (@dukeofdoja) and my personal favorite breeder of all time @nineweeksharvest. So many more to name, but enough name dropping, lets get to the real.

Simply put, selling white label seeds in fancy packaging is much easier than selling white label pack in fancy packaging. Seeds have no distinguishable characteristics besides tiger stripes, and all of the packs are usually sealed anyway. What’s to stop even the biggest names in the game from sourcing any old bullshit and giving it some fake lineage on a mylar? After running said mylar through the sealer you couldn’t check them if you tried—not that you could even see what they actually are from looking at them.

The average resident of Spain makes about €12,000 per year – that’s roughly $13,000/year by todays conversions. Selling fake nonsense at an astronomical ticket is so disrespectful not only to the locals, and the country of Spain, but to the entire game, and it’s crazy to me that allegedly reputable people would try such a thing. Selling seeds is essentially selling dreams, and not even a magician could sell hundreds of thousands of dollars worth of made up folklore crosses with fake names.

Further, even the top breeders gear will herm under the wrong conditions. As my good friend @masonicsmoker4.0 always says, “if it herms it’s because people can’t grow for shit – it’s all user error.” But on a serious note, to expect to germinate a seed and immediately flower it and NOT have a terrible experience is a ridiculous concept in itself. In my experience the process should be to pop the seed, clone it, cull the seed start, then flower clones from your new mothers. In other words, flower and hunt through your second generation clones to see a more realistic expression of the plant.

Also when hunting, I think its very important to be hyper critical and be prepared to throw 99% of new gear in the trash bin; they all can’t be winners just because you took the time and spent the money to pop and hunt. Breeders know this, and should act accordingly so as not to take advantage of those that look up to us. Shout out to everyone putting in the work to push the culture forward, especially regarding genetics. 

The Popularity Contests

I love hash. I love rosin. I love this plant. However, I do not love seeing the same strains win every competition, especially when it’s always from the same group of people.

Everyone has an opinion on how these things should be judged, how people should be smoking, how people should be judging, who should be judging… To me it’s becoming too obvious that some people care soooo much to the point they’re going to make sure that they win, and if they don’t win they’re going to make sure their friends win. That’s the reality of many of these smaller, less wide-reaching competitions. And this is not a personal attack on anyone, or any particular competition. If you love this plant enough to physically wash it in damn near freezing conditions, let alone all of the prep work, packaging and everything else involved, especially if you’re actually growing it yourself… you are in fact a crazy person, like me, and we can be friends. That should be enough. I was contemplating not saying any of this for political reasons but it needed to be said. Variety is the spice of life and as much as I too love these highly decorated strains, I find it extremely one-sided to continue to see the same patterns from the same people. Perhaps after you win you sit out the next year?

In Conclusion

Spannabis and its surrounding events are world-class, and unlike anything I’ve ever experienced in the U.S. The culture is vibrant there, and it’s much farther reaching than the variety of cultivars our guys brought to the table that particular day. If you’ve never been, go. Just be careful – as you should anywhere you aren’t as comfortable with as the place you actually live. I would suggest spending some time before or after the events just to see how Barcelona truly is, without every cannabis personality at every single event in a too-small room (for that many people) taking up precious oxygen. Travel around Europe a little as well, if you can take the time to do so. It will enrich your life in ways you simply can’t inside a sesh, in ways that are hard to measure, but easy to feel. Trust me on this one.

Thank you to everyone that made this trip memorable. I’m looking forward to our next adventure.

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