Five Ways to Celebrate 7/10 Without Getting Too Stoned

A woman takes a dab from an electronic vaporizer at a private event in Boulder.
A woman takes a dab from an electronic vaporizer at a private event in Boulder. Jacqueline Collins
Everyone's favorite up-and-coming stoner holiday is nearly here. On Tuesday, July 10, thousands of cannabis users in Colorado will ditch the ol'-fashioned flower for concentrates to mark 7/10, a day dedicated to hash. The reason? Because when you look at the date (710) upside down, it looks like "oil."

Say what you will about its origins, there's nothing silly about what this state's 7/10 celebration is doing for commercial cannabis. Dispensaries have taken notice, too, with nearly every pot shop in the Mile High offering some sort of holiday special.

A word of caution, however: With potency levels of anywhere from 60 to 90 percent THC, cannabis concentrates can easily lead the inexperienced down the path of overconsumption. To help ensure that you don't spend three hours tomorrow staring at the refrigerator, here are five ways to celebrate 7/10 like a seasoned vet.

Celebrate with friends
Don't be a loner stoner; dab up with others. Not only is it more fun to get high with a little help from your friends, but your pals are also there to make sure you don't overdo it — and if you do, they'll get you home in one piece (maybe after drawing a dick on your forehead, but safe nonetheless). Since amateur freakouts are likely with concentrates capable of reaching over 95 percent THC, make sure you have a partner to hold you down. After all, someone has to be able to eventually order that pizza.

Taste it, don't waste it
Approach 7/10 like a large beer event, steadily sipping on one-ounce pours throughout the day instead of chugging IPAs like you did in college. As extraction technology improves, so does the quality and flavor profile of live resin, terp sauce and whatever the hell else these space-age machines are pumping out today. Take smaller hits at lower temperatures to appreciate those terpenes without going to the moon before lunch.

Let that nail cool down
Low-temperature dabs aren't just important for flavor. Hitting your rig while the nail is too hot can also make for one harsh rip, vaporizing your dab instantly and leaving your throat, lungs and brain to deal with the mess. Not surprisingly, research shows those harsh rips probably aren't healthy, either: A study at Portland State University found potentially cancer-causing chemicals on nails heated above 750 degrees, while anything over 900 degrees released benzene, a harmful carcinogen.

Stay away from the straw — especially if it's your first time
Anyone who's hit a honey straw or Nectar Collector knows what I'm talking about. Instead of heating a nail, you torch the end of a glass or metal straw until it's hot enough to dab, and then move the straw over the hash like a wand while inhaling. Although this is a fun change of pace, the technique can easily lead to overconsumption, as it's harder to dose and one wrong jerk can plunge users into a coughing frenzy. Unless you're very experienced at coloring air with the honey straw, stay away from it on a day like this.

Consider a vaporizer
Hand-held coil vaporizers or pre-filled cartridges don't always provide that stiff hit that hard-core dabbers are after, but that's exactly why they're a good option for celebrating more responsibly. The electronic temperature settings in vaporizer batteries are much easier to gauge than a torched nail, enabling users to dose hits more accurately. The pre-filled-cartridge sector has seen its share of ups and downs since retail sales began, but the quality has come a long way in four years, with live resin and distillate cartridges available for potent, tasty hash rips.
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Herbert Fuego is the resident stoner at Westword, ready to answer all your marijuana questions.
Contact: Herbert Fuego