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Oh! Its Going Down

In Communication, Griot, Networking, News, Politics, Self Improvement, Sports on January 31, 2014 at 9:57 am

QE Super Bowl 2014 Newsletter -1

I was watching NOW w/Alex yesterday indeed,
when she began to exhale on the topic of weed:

Alex: People will call it The Stoner Bowl, The Bud Bowl and my personal favorite, The Super Doobie Bowl. This Super Bowl Sunday the pot punning will be in full effect. As teams from the first two states to legalize recreational marijuana, Washington and Colorado, face off against each other. On Sunday it is Seattle Sea Hawks versus the Denver Broncos and the average Super Bowl party could get a lot more interesting. Think about it, bigger laughs, better appetites and also more conversation about trying to sink the half time show to the dark side of the moon.

In Colorado marijuana dispensaries are selling “glass pipes and bongs with the team’s colors of blue and orange will go on sale… As will at least one variety of pot – likely the fortuitously-named “Orange Crush,” per Reuters. And in Washington, even though marijuana is not technically legal yet, clubs have been selling blue and green Sea Hawk themed weed cupcakes. is even selling marijuana theme swag like this THC jersey.

Click pic to enlarge

Click pic to enlarge

Marijuana remains on the NFL’s list of banned substances but that doesn’t mean it isn’t on the list for privately enjoyed substances. And last week NFL Commissioner Roger Godell, said the NFL would consider allowing athletes to use marijuana to treat concussions and other head injuries as long as they have permission from medical experts. On Monday, Seattle Sea Hawks, Head Coach, Pete Carroll made a very similar recommendation, telling ESPN that “you should explore medical marijuana as treatment for NFL players.”

So, weed is in the air, literally, this weekend the honest rivalry that Super Bowl attendees will be treated to is probably this one, on the highways near the MetLife Stadium – where the game will be played, there’s a billboard war going on with marijuana activist on one side advertising weed is something that is safer than alcohol and football vs. anti-pot groups on the other side claiming weed kills motivation.

Joining me now is man who knows about both weed and motivation, former Denver Broncos Tight End, Nate Jackson who argues in support of marijuana use in the NFL and his new memoir SLOW GETTING UP. Nate thank you so much for joining us.

Nate: Thank you for having me.

Alex: And I hope you don’t take offense to our proclamation that you are a weed enthusiasts, but, you know, I will quote from your memoir where you wrote, “The NFL should remove marijuana from their band substances list. Don’t tell anyone about, just stop testing for it. Pain is a big problem in the NFL.” Why is marijuana, for example, better than pills, on the question of pain?

Nate: For me personally, it’s not as addictive as pain pills. I’ve had some injuries over my career that were pretty bad that required surgery and a lot of rehab and pain pills made me feel sad, they made me feel depressed, sluggish – mentally. And pills are something you can do all day long – you could be sitting in meetings taking pills, versus marijuana, you can’t do that in meetings, you can’t be at practice smoking weed. It’s something you do after the fact. For me, it helped take my mind off of my body and the pain and it wasn’t physically addictive. There’s no withdrawal symptoms.

Alex: One of the things you said in an earlier interview, you said, ‘you guessed that about 50-60% of players use marijuana. That seems like a fairly big percentage given the fact that it’s not officially sanctioned in the NFL. Was it kind of, the coaches look the other way or what was the culture in and around the use of it?

Nate: You know I think the coaches look the other. I think they understand that these guys are 22, 23 and 24 year old guys who group up in America and are familiar with the social life, you know, they’re familiar with weed, alcohol and if you get to that point in the NFL where you’re competing at your job, you’re doing a great job, you’re coming to work and satisfying your coaches demands they don’t care what you do – I think. As long as you come to work prepared, and in shape and you’re dissecting the playbook and all that stuff.

Alex: How surprised were you at Roger Godell’s comments? I mean the NFL is not known to be at the forefront of pushing the cultural envelope. I mean, he didn’t say ‘we’re going to sanction the use of marijuana,’ but he very much opened the door to it. Did that surprise you?

Nate: Yes. It seems usually to be a disconnect between the league and the players – you know, the players pain and their issues- and this shows me that Roger is getting more compassionate about what these guys go through and maybe understanding that there are consequences to having a violent product on the field and not everyone can go home and say, ‘I don’t need anything. I’m just fine,” — pain follows you off the field. Some guys medicate with pills – my personal belief is that weed is just not that harmful.

Alex: Well it’s interesting that you categorize under rubric of pain because the NFL has come under a lot of fire for pain injuries and concussions. I mean, you talked about the violent product on the field. I mean what do you think about the sport right now? What do you think needs to be done to address that problem?

Nate: I love the sport. I love the dangerous, violent nature of the sport, that’s what drew me to it and that’s what draws most people to it – we love it. The players aren’t afraid of that [being hit], but there are consequences to it and so I think it’s important that we take care of these guys after they get hurt when they’re 5,10,15 years down the line if they run into some head issues or body issues. I wish the NFL had a healthcare plan that took care of those guys. As of now, is 5-years of post career health provision — and that’s it. So mine runs out on the next year and then I’m on my own and a lot of times, these injuries don’t pop up until later. I’m all for protecting these guys off the field, but on the field it’s violent and they’re drawn towards that.

Alex: Your point is, basically,  that is the game it is at this point.

Nate: That is the game it is. And when you’re talking about health and safety and football it’s kind of a PR issue more so than anything else because the Mothers of America are trying to decide whether to put their kids into the game. You know their 7, 8 year old, 9 year old kids putting on helmets– I don’t think they need to be smashing heads. I think they should wait until high school, personally.

Alex: Okay Nate, I’m not about to ask you a dumb, really dumb question,  like who you’re going to be rooting for. You’re obviously going to be rooting for the Bronco’s, but what are your Super Bowl plans?

Nate:  I’m going to be back in the bay area with my family. It’s my dads 85th birthday celebration, so it’s going to be a big group of us, sitting around the tv by the beach, watching the game. It’s going to work out.

Alex: That doesn’t sound so bad, sitting by the beach. I noticed you were driving the knife further in with those of us on the East Coast. Former Denver Broncos Tight End, Nate Jackson. Thanks for your time.

football divider

Pretty interesting stuff with some pretty elevated quotes,
I’m Qui
and this years Super Bowl joint has definitely got my vote.

When it comes to sports and family – it yields a closeness that can’t be undone.
Therfore, because we share the same last name, I’m pulling for Russell Wilson.