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Meet Cee D, Weed Writer

Here is the person who had teased me when I exclaimed, “I love throwing knives”,

during our work dinner party. This is also the same person that secretly bought me a bubble tea to lift my spirits. In Cee’s own unique ways, she will make you laugh until your cheeks hurt at everyday musings, and at the simple absurdities in life. With a natural ability to create a non-judgmental space, this straight shooter brings a first-person account of her life, both on, and off ‘the high’,
in her memoir, Words of Weedsdom.

Rhey: What is the most used word in your current vocabulary?

Cee: I’m growing out of ‘YAS’. I’m starting to vibe with “I love it” as a statement. It’s versatile:
“I got a free coffee today!”
“I love it!”
“I think every kid had the same bowl-style haircut at one point in their lives”
“I. Love. it.”
“Don’t you find that new Netflix show so interesting?”
“I pause for dramatic effect LOVE it”.
Otherwise I say, “interesting . . . “ a lot. I think it’s a good placeholder for a conversation; not agreeing or disagreeing, effectively neutral, but allowing others to steer a conversation. It also makes me sound kinda smart, like a scientist or something.

Rhey: What is your LEAST favourite chore?

Cee: Dishes. But every chore as an adult now feels like some endless cycle of futility:
Wash the dishes. Buy the groceries. Cook the food. Wash the dishes.
Hang up your clothes. Pick what you wear. Do the dirty laundry. Hang up your clothes.
Sweep the floor. Drop your food on the floor. Vacuum the rug. What fresh madness is this.

Rhey: Use a meme to describe what you are like when you are extremely hungry. 

Cee: Oh gawd I NEED to go with this classic:

Rhey: What is your current theme song? 

Cee: W.I.T.C.H. by Devon Cole

Rhey: Which part of, Words of Weedsdom, was the hardest to write? 

Cee: I would say writing the book was a humbling experience. I was pretty proud of all the ideas that came to me, but I had to translate these high thoughts in a way that conveyed the point I was trying to make, and I wanted it to be accessible for anyone.
The whole point was to present a viewpoint as someone who had no previous experience with weed or smoking (and who was generally very cynical about life), to show people how very wrong I was about it—what it is, how it works, its beneficial uses—and ultimately offer some insight into what I learned.
I found it very difficult to convey that without coming across as pretentious, and without implying that you had to start smoking weed to change your life. I wanted to make a point that yes, cannabis changed my life perspective, but being open to new experiences and coming out of our comfort zones is what pushes us to grow into better versions of ourselves.

Rhey: Which part of the book do you believe your readers will relate to most?

Cee: For anyone from Toronto, I think there would be an amusing amount of familiar street names, attractions, and landscape for readers. I focused a lot on that on purpose, not from any Torontonian hubris, but because I wanted anyone who grew up in the city like me to have their own memories triggered if they recognized something they read. I wanted to convey that my story was, and still is, just one of many lives that co-exist in the same space as many others.
For anyone that grew up in the same social mileu of ‘The Millenial’ like me, the familiarities will be there in the same way, like remembering “the good old days” when all our music was on cassettes or CDs, dial-up and rotary phones were still in use, computers and TVs weighed a brick-load, and Polly Pockets (or the male equivalent: ‘Mighty Max’) were small enough to swallow.

Rhey: What self-care activity or habit do you think is undervalued?

Cee: Buying things that make you happy. Retail therapy is REAL and if you can’t spend the money you made through suffering on something (small to moderate) that makes you happy, why bother doing it all in the first place.

Rhey: Have you ever considered pulling the fire alarm for a non-emergency?

Cee: All the time. I’m really glad they started putting those boxes over them so it’s not as tempting. I have a compulsion to push any button, or flick any switch I see. It’s my greatest contribution in Escape Room teams.

Rhey: Does social media make us less social? 

Cee: That question reminds me of that study about the rats that had their brains wired to a pleasure circuit whenever they pressed a lever: they started ignoring food and water, each other, and even their babies. They basically ignored everything except getting this response in their brains, and they would have starved themselves to death if they weren’t unhooked.
I think social media gives us that same jolt of excitement when we see people paying attention to us—liking our photos or whatever—that we can become dependent on, so in a way we are more involved in interactions with others . . . but it’s this weird paradox of reaching out to strangers across the world, instead of talking to those closest to us.
However, I think it appeals to certain kinds of people over others, and I like to think we have more control over it than it really seems like we do. What I mean is that I don’t think its mind-controlling to the point of the rats, but I think a person who is more introverted in general would still find a way to be antisocial without social media. For example, social media gives me the chance to be way more social than I would be otherwise, but I still prefer texting or
messaging someone instead of calling.

Rhey: What is the worst thing parents can do for a child who has gone through trauma?

Cee: Minimize it.

I always think of it like what I learned in nursing school, that pain is one of the vital signs to monitor. We were taught to think pain is whatever the patient says it is, and I think trauma is the same. It’s disrespectful to brush off an event in someone’s life that they say really affected them, whether it’s positive or negative.

Rhey: You mention in your memoir that it took ten years to write, where do you see yourself going now that you’ve finally finished this project?

Cee: I really don’t know. I’m still figuring out what I want to do with my life. I think I’m discovering I want to move into a more active role than a passive one. Nursing helps people with their bodies, but I have more of an interest helping people with their minds. The mind and studying the psychology behind what makes us who we are are understated and underrated.
Now I’m more interested in helping people help themselves. I don’t really know where you start with that, but right now all I can think of is to share my story.
Writing has become a comfortable outlet for me, and finishing this project was an important first step towards finding my voice. I would love to write more, or collaborate on future projects with like-minded people who are passionate about the future of psychedelics in mental health.
For something that’s been around for millennia, it’s a damn shame there’s still so much stigma and judgement surrounding it.

Rhey: What advice would you give to someone who feels that the use of weed by someone they care about is affecting their relationship?

Cee: That’s a tough one because it has so many layers, and I think the advice would be different in each case.
At the end of the day weed is a drug—and if a drug or any other form of addiction is bad enough that people are using it to escape real life to the point it affects their very real circumstances, that’s a problem. It can be devastating to see someone you care about making bad decisions or escaping their problems, and it’s even more devastating to realize that
ultimately, that person needs to make their own choices in life. I think all you can really do to help them is by making sure they know you are there for them, help them when they ask for help (within reason), and escalate it to authorities if their life becomes in danger. I’m not saying give up on them—I’m just saying it’s incredibly important to realize each person’s accountability in their own life, and don’t let someone with a bad attitude drag you down with them.



Note: 1. Cee D is currently based in North Toronto, Ontario (Canada).

2. Discovered in-person through circumstance.

3. When Cee was asked if she would rather have a golden tongue or silver voice she said, “I would much rather have a golden tongue. I think being an eloquent speaker is much more rare. Besides, who doesn’t want to be charming?”

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