Stick it to The Man

Tennessee MAN
The showdown recently in the Tennessee Legislature

A few days before Oklahoma voted down a proposal to legalize recreational marijuana across the state, a friend and I discussed the issue over coffee. He said he was voting ‘yes’ to the initiative, despite the fact that he has no interest in using marijuana.

I asked him why.

“I want to stick it to The Man,” he said.

I’m right there with you, my friend.

Sticking it to The Man has become a personal avocation for me as I’ve approached my angry old man years (GET OFF MY LAWN!).

Of course, defining exactly who ‘The Man’ is can be a moving target.

In my mind, The Man is an older, wealthy white guy sitting in a corner suite in a tower office, pouring money into campaigns and candidates that promise to resist change at all costs or take America back to the 1950s.

You know, when everyone knew their place. Wink. Wink.

I am a child of the South, so I know how Jim Crow laws were enforced by The Man all over the South until the mid-1960s.

The emergence of MAGA and Red State legislators in today’s world have an eerie resemblance to their ancestors who set up a society in which white folks were guaranteed by law to be the ruling class.

Some famous examples of sticking it to The Man from the past:

Rosa Parks refused to yield her seat to a white person on a bus in Montgomery, Ala., and helped launch the Civil Rights movement.

Clara Luper led a group of young people into a downtown Oklahoma City drug store in 1958 where they sat at the lunch counter until they were served in a time when Jim Crow laws still enforced segregation.

Jackie Robinson became the first African-American to play in a Major League Baseball game on April 15, 1947 when he started at first base for the Brooklyn Dodgers. Major League Baseball had operated as a segregated sport for almost a hundred years.

Want to see a current-day for-instance?

We can look to the Tennessee legislature to see The Man in action. Less than two weeks ago, the white Republican legislative majority was so offended that people protested lack of restraints on purchase and ownership of assault weapons that they expelled two Black legislators who participated in a protest on the floor of the House.

The two offending legislators had joined a group of young people making their voices heard after a gunman used a high powered rifle to kill six children and teachers at a Nashville elementary school.

Less than a week after they were expelled, county commissioners in Nashville and Memphis reinstated both legislators. Now that’s sticking it to The Man.

I took great pleasure in seeing their reinstatement.

Yet another example of sticking it to The Man, which in this case was an institution:  Billy Beane and the Oakland A’s embraced a system of statistical analysis that turned the way of judging talent by Major League Baseball upside down.

Read the book Moneyball to see how it all went down, or watch the movie starring Brad Pitt.

Sticking it to The Man has been a common theme in movies across the years. Perhaps my favorite is the movie Office Space, which follows a group of young office workers stuck in mind-numbing jobs with an over-the-top intrusive manager and a balky printer.

They stick it to The Man in several ways, but my favorite is a scene where they load the hated printer into the trunk of a car, drive it to a remote location and take out their anger on it with a baseball bat — in slow motion.

Watch the scene here.

My attempts to stick it to The Man are more low key. For instance, I once worked in an office where we were forbidden to download any unapproved software, including my browser of choice, Google Chrome. The IT department told us it ‘did not support’ Chrome, so we were stuck with Microsoft Explorer.

Then a coworker discovered that we could download Chrome without it being blocked by the IT lockdown. I downloaded it and used it for years of software bliss and satisfaction in knowing I was sticking it to The Man in a small way.

OK, I know that’s not a society changing act like leading a group of students to a lunch-counter sit-in. My place in history is on a much, much smaller scale.

But I’ve used the power of the vote to support causes like the expansion of Medicaid in Oklahoma and medical marijuana, both of which had heavy opposition from those in power.

When both of those questions passed, I celebrated to myself, knowing that I had a small part in sticking it to The Man.


Dispensary names are One Toke Over the Line (Sweet Jesus)

Buddies sign
Sign atop the “Buddies Cannabis Co.” dispensary along N. Western Ave.

I once had a co-worker who spoke fondly — and often — about the awesomeness of “African Trip Weed.” I was pretty sure what he meant.

That was back in the ’80s, when America declared its War on Drugs and put a lot of people into prison for dealing, possessing, using marijuana, whether it was ‘Trip Weed’ or not.

Fast forward to 2023.

Oklahoma has declared marijuana suitable for medicinal use and opened the door to a tsunami of Medicinal Cannabis — maybe that word won’t offend Grandma so much.

According to data I found on the Oklahoma Medicinal Marijuana Authority, there are 2,893 licensed Medical Marijuana dispensaries in Oklahoma.

So, there are legal marijuana shops in strip centers and street corners all across OKC. Just drive up and down a major retail corridor like May Ave. or Penn and count the Medicinal Marijuana stores.

weed dispensaries

I’m not here to argue the merits for or against marijuana use and its benefits or its dangers.

However, I’m completely taken by the creativity the weed dealers use to name their businesses. If there’s a clever pun that can be used in the name, someone has claimed it.

Perhaps my favorite is located on N Western Ave. just north of Memorial Road. There sits “Buddies” waiting to serve your medicinal needs.

Now that’s a clever play on words, even if it’s an obvious one. You don’t have to wonder what business “Buddies” is in.

I go up-and-down Western often, so I see the “Buddies” sign a lot. It got me to wondering about the most clever names for Oklahoma City marijuana joints (pun intended).

So, I asked my friend, Open AI’s Chat GPT, to come up with a list of the top 25 clever marijuana dispensary names in Oklahoma City.

Here’s what ChatBot came up with.

Pot of Gold Dispensary
The Happy Ogle
Puffin’ Stuff
Green Grannies
Joint Venture
The Dankery
Budding Bloomers
Dr. Reefer’s
Bud Brothers
The Green Scene
Higher Ground Dispensary
Treehouse Club
Green Love
Ganja Queen
Calm Waters Cannabis Co.
Higher Calling
Best Buds Dispensary
T-Town Medical Marijuana Dispensary
The Pot House
Mary Jane Dispensary
The Med Shed
The High Road Dispensary
Smokin’ Gun Dispensary
Buzzn Dispensary

Joint Venture may be my favorite.  But where is “One Toke Over the Line (Sweet Jesus)?”

If you’ve seen a weed store with a clever name that’s not on this list, reply to this post and let me know the name. That’s what “Buddies” are for.

Buddies truck