I bought the bong as a joke, after some unhelpful encouragement from my then-boyfriend, about how funny it would be to smoke out of a two-foot-large weed contraption every time we threw a party. I didn’t quite realize it would become my most trusted, and reliable, weed-to-body vehicle.
Throughout the election last week, my coworkers talked quite a bit about the food they might eat, or the alcohol they would drink, or what they would stress- and panic-purchase online. Meanwhile, I was pounding back hits on my lovely, human-sized bong, while my fellow bloggers were suffering in the trash city of New York, where it’s illegal to smoke weed—or blog about smoking the stuff you get from the friend of a friend, probably. And having been in New York myself, twice, I can say with certainty they don’t miss much, as the local fare is dry, sour garbage. (Everyone give thanks to the “war on drugs.”) Perhaps the recent legalization in New Jersey will change that.
So there I was, on election night, attempting to do my best impression of a person who felt anything but an overwhelming apathy towards the proceedings. I’d put on my little voting outfit, and did my voting tasks, and the best I could muster was a chilling dread that I would wake up Wednesday in a world exactly like the previous one. And so I kept pounding back the bong hits—indica, mostly, strong enough to tranquilize a horse—from a glass contraption larger than most children.
I won’t share a picture of this bong. Not only is it so large and ridiculous that I could put a wig on it and pass it for my child at a JoJo Siwa concert, but there is also a crud that circles the interior like a cursed promise ring, one that I cannot remove, no how many vinegar or soap or even bleach baths it’s been dunked in. On election night, I remember Steve Kornacki drawing triangles on his little magic board, and screaming about niche county turnouts. While the electoral process devolved into pageantry and chaos, I imagined that the crud around my bong was also how my lungs looked right about then. And then I fell asleep to the sweet, sweet sounds of Rachel Maddow’s wild ramblings sometime around 2 a.m. Wednesday.
It is now Tuesday of this week, seven whole days after the election. My big, beautiful bong has been shelved until my next crisis of faith. Despite how chipped it is, or dirty-looking, it makes for nice window dressing, or an ironic, temporary vase. (I’m not a scientist, but I swear the weed chemicals preserve the flowers longer.)
I will continue to smoke Wedding Cake, though, which is a helpful Indica hybrid that derives from my college favorites, Cherry Pie and Girl Scout Cookies. It glues me to the couch in a comforting way, like I am actually just a brain in a jar. Especially now, on a Tuesday, when I’ve woken up and realized the world outside is still about as bad as the one I fell asleep to last week. I suspect that despite the temporary hope the last few days might have inspired in my weed-crud stained heart, my big beautiful bong will get plenty of use in the years—0r even days—to come.