Get Ready for 4/20 Weekend!

posted on 4/19/13

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In recent years, Cannabis culture has made great strides toward mainstream acceptance—all across America, a slew of states have passed laws allowing for medicinal marijuana use, abolishing criminal penalties for simple possession or, in a few cases, even outright legalizing it for recreational use. With ‘stoner’ culture becoming more widely accepted, a staggering number of average people are coming out of the woodwork and admitting to being recreational cannabis users. And you’d better believe that a lot of them are breathing a big, smoky sigh of relief that this year April 20th, the “Stoner’s New Year”, falls on a Saturday.

So, how should you celebrate 4/20 this year? Well, besides the *ahem* obvious way, of course. Well, how about paying homage to some well-known pothead archetypes with these fun costume ideas?

The Hippie
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Hippies are probably the most famous of all the archetypal stoners. Growing out of the Beat Generation of the late 1950’s, hippies emerged as a prominent cultural force in America by 1965. Hippies were rabidly anti-war, and it is likely that the development of the hippie subculture was spurred on by the extremely controversial Vietnam War. They are best remembered for their wild, experimental art and music, their belief in free love and their predilection for exploring altered mind states with the help of psychoactive drugs—LSD, ‘magic’ mushrooms, and of course, marijuana.

Costume Essentials

Long Black Hippie Wig with Headband – Rebelling against the button-down squares of the time, hippies were infamous for letting their hair grow long and wild.
Mood Peace Sign Necklace – The Hippies were big pacifists, and the peace sign is emblematic of the commitment to nonviolence. It is exceedingly common in art of the 1960’s and later Hippies.
Round Sunglasses – Popularized by Beatles frontman John Lennon, these stylish round glasses have become essentially ubiquitous symbols of hippie fashion.
Rainbow Earrings – 1960’s art, heavily influenced by psychoactive drugs, was extremely bright and colorful. The rainbow is also often used as a symbol of peace, dating back to Italian anti-war protests in the early 1960’s.
Hippie Bag – Many hippies were wandering free-spirits, and tended to travel light. Still, you always need a place to keep your stash!

The Rasta Man
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Most people probably associate smoking pot with Rastafarians, but very few know what the Rastafari movement is all about. It originated in the 1930’s in Jamaica, and asserts that Haile Selassie I, the final Emperor of Ethiopia, is the Second Coming of Jesus Christ, Jah. Rastafari follow the teachings of the Bible, although they believe that its message has become corrupted by the forces of Babylon (the embodiment of decadence, corruption and materialism). Contrary to popular belief, Rastafarian use of cannabis is more spiritual than recreational, as they believe that the drug’s psychoactive properties are a gateway to a heightened understanding of God and self.

Costume Essentials

Rasta Wayfarers – Sporting the colors of the Ethiopian flag, these wayfarers are a great way to hide your bloodshot eyes if you live somewhere that doesn’t accept your religious right to burn God’s herb.
Rasta Kufi with Dreadlocks – though dreadlocks aren’t a specific part of the Rastfari faith, they are very common among its adherents. The practice makes use of the Old Testament tradition of growing the beard and hair long, but with a cultural twist that represents Rastafari’s African origins. Certainly dreadlocks jump to mind when most people think of Rastas.
Canvas Rasta Belt – This belt, also in Ethiopian colors, sports the image of the Lion of Judah, a very important religious and cultural symbol to the Rastafari. It was used on the Ethiopian flag during the reign of Emperor Haile Selassie I, and is often used to symbolize Jesus.

The Slacker
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The stoner archetype for the Grunge Era, slackers were most commonly found cutting class to burn one behind the gym and practice their kickflips. Mostly disaffected suburban youth, their pot use was mostly fueled by nihilism and a generalized sense of rebellion against the status quo. All in all they were a pretty lack-luster subculture, although 90’s grunge and alt-rock were undeniably excellent.

Costume Essentials

Beanie with Visor – Great for keeping your long, unwashed Kurt Cobain hair out of your face while you’re trying to nail that tailslide.
Bullet Wristband – Show the world you’re not looking for a polite conversation with this edgy accessory.
Pyramid Stud Black Belt – Keep those baggy jeans in place with attitude! Studded belts are a staple of 90’s grunge fashion.

The Bro
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Gaining prominence ever since the early 2000’s, the stoner bro archetype represents the changing face of cannabis culture. For generations, marijuana smokers have been either forced into secrecy by public disapproval or else relegated to the margins of society. But as recreational marijuana use gains more mainstream acceptance, the image of the typical ‘stoner’ is becoming steadily more normal-looking. Bros don’t just smoke a lot of weed—they also drink a lot, and are apt to take most any drug or combination of drugs that will enable them to party hard. Unlike the other archetypes, for whom pot use is a way of life, bros approach any and all drug use as just a part of being young—these are the ‘weekend warriors’ who are getting lifted and acting a fool until they have to chill and study for their Econ final.

Costume Essentials

Visor – Visors are the perfect bro accessory because they shade your eyes from the punishing sun of that UF game without messing up your carefully-styled hair.
Small Gold Chain – Flash your cash in understated style with this simple gold chain that simply screams “This ain’t jewelry, because jewelry’s for chicks, and chicks are weak, brah.”
Canvas Belt – Keep those khaki board shorts in place so your frat buddies can’t pants you while you’re chatting up that hot sorority girl.

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