Willie Nelson is high while on Larry King show

Willie Nelson tells Larry King he is stoned as they speak. It reminds me of the time Timothy Leary was at a press conference and a reporter asked him: "When was the last time you took LSD?" and Leary said, "I'm tripping now."


  1. Well, sort of … he doesn’t quite tell him that “he’s stoned.” He admits that he smoked before going on air with Larry King and says “yeah,” when Larry King asks him, “Do you have pot in you right now?” I think the distinction is important, especially for older smokers with, as Willie points out, high tolerance levels. He’s not necessarily smoking to “get stoned” but perhaps for some of the other wide array of effects that different strains of marijuana might lend the person. As we move toward legalization — ideally beyond just the medical marijuana label — I think it’s important to educate the public away from the “stoner” image. I’d rather have Willie advocating for change than, say, Cheech & Chong, even though for all I know, Dave’s still not here, man.

    1. Ha ha ha…except that marijuana has a “reverse-tolerance” effect: it takes less to get high, as one gets more used to getting high.

      Beginners need a whole joint: old hippies but a toke.

      Reefer ain’t cocaine, or booze, in this regard.

      1. Ugly Canuck, I gotta say that’s just not true. Smoking more than once a day slowly builds up a tolerance that can only be brought down by taking an extended break from the good herb.

      2. Actually, no. True, heavy users who go without for a long time, are able to get a hit off a smaller amount, but there is also a thing called ‘tolerance’ which means that in continual heavy users, it takes more to get you to a ‘noticeable’ high.

  2. Oh, one more thing. This footage strikes me as a live smack-down between coffee/cigarettes vs. marijuana! Note how King jumps on him with the “So YOU!” and Willie deflects with a lilting, soft-spoken, “Say what?” The non-conflict of demeanor is perfect, but maybe it’s just an East Coast vs. Austin thing!

  3. Oh but that being said. Mr Nelson’s personal consumption of reefer is famous for being, well, a lot.
    But everybody’s health is different in some way, eh?

  4. Hello to all, I have a simple question, since I simply don’t know the answer and don’t have enough experience to determine for myself. Are the comments from #1 (The pHarmanaut) or from the reply that Ugly Canuck make more accurate? Is there any medical documentation available?

    Sorry, I don’t currently have access to pubmed or similar databases, and not sure that I trust much of the rest of the net on this one.
    Thanks for the help.

    1. I don’t know of medical documentation, but anecdotally I would say that most “stoners” don’t seem high most of the time. I’ve known many people who smoke daily and live normal functional lives. I had a coworker a few years ago who I later found out was regularly smoking up during breaks. I never knew.
      Which isn’t to say they don’t get baked out of their minds and giggle incessantly too, but I think they have enough experience to effectively control their dosing.

    2. I believe the medical evidence would support a little from column A and a little from column B. If you take a cursory glance at the book “A primer of drug action” you can see that mj stays in the system for between 2 to 8 hours (iirc) as a psychoactive drug. The metabolites stay in the system for up to 30 days or so, which is why drug tests for marijuana come up positive so often.

      So… if you stay in that window, smoking more will saturate and you won’t feel much more effects from more smoking. Eating it lasts longer and binds to more receptor sites on your body… but the difference isn’t that big.

      I think the effect of long time smokers not smoking so much comes from knowledge that “getting really high” isn’t that great compared to being “a little high” …

      But I’ve only smoked for a dozen plus years.

    3. THC has a very long half-life, 1 to 10 days. Compare to morphine with a half life of 2 hours, Demerol 3 -5 hours, Vicodin – 3.8 hours.

    4. No, the tolerance bit simply is not true. I have been a HEAVY smoker for years and, like alchohol under similar circumstances, I have a vastly higher tolerance than I did when I started.

      As for Pharm… well yeah, he does seem pretty accurate… Much like one can drink but not do so to “get drunk” one can smoke some pot not to get blisteringly stoned. However, one should note here the reason it is smoked in the first place is that it is basically the most immediate form of graitification.

      Also again like alcohol I would challenge anyone that “just consumes it for the taste”. Tell me you drink ODouls religiously and I MIGHT believe you… same for pot. It has SOME effect or you wouldn’t smoke it.

      Willie is probably as high there as I am right now which is fully functional yet quite high :) And he is clearly lucid, more so than someone equivalently drunk I would wager.

    5. I have noticed a pattern with pot smokers.
      People’s first joint or two often goes unnoticed, they don’t feel too different.
      from then:
      The first stage of smoking you get the giggles.
      Later on most people get the paranoias.
      If they see it through that, one gets more comfortable in it.
      i.e. it’s mostly used for taking the edge off, or getting creative, or focussing finely on a task.
      The ‘stoner’ label is mostly the first-stagers and unfortunately has become the media generalisation.

      I’ve been smoking for over 20 years, and if I want to get ‘chinese-eyes’ I’ll need a good sized ‘marley’, but if I make a small ‘prison-rollie’ it’s plenty enough to release the day’s aggro and take off the edges.

  5. Hybridan, I don’t know about citing any particular sources or studies but, after smoking a lot of weed, I can tell you that in some cases, (Depending on the actual strain/quality) its true. I don’t smoke these days but, if anyone tells you Marijuana is harmful, dangerous or a gateway drug…then they are high!! (But not on ganja) ;-)

  6. nutate has a point. I do remember getting to that point, where I was content with just being in a relaxed state of mind, versus stoned out of my mind.

  7. There is not really a reverse-tolerance effect (that I’ve experienced in around 3 decades). Different pot will affect the same person differently. With some kinds a few hits will do, with other stuff a joint or two. But the longer you have used it, the more use you are to the state (of being stoned) you get in.

  8. My difficulty is that I don’t smoke it often enough and therefore even with minimal ingestion (2-3 tokes) I get wasted, then fall asleep.

  9. Reminds me of when I was at a warehouse rave in Chicago in the early 90s and they turned the music off so Robert Anton Wilson could speak.

    At the end of his presentation, he said, “And people ask me when was the last time I took acid. And I tell them, TODAY!!”

    I now wonder if he borrowed that from Leary.

  10. Antinous, re-the 1/2 life of opiates, really? I do not doubt you, just am curious, wuld you care to expound? Please?

  11. I hope this doesn’t cause some FDA/FBI/ATF d-bag to decide that he needs to make his career by taking down Willie. Remember they went after Chong in the old “example” game …

  12. Hey, remember that video called Spin?

    Google Video = “Brian Springer – Spin”

    In it Larry King is recommending “sleeping pills” to Poppy Bush during the 92 election season.

    Lots of great stuff in that video.

  13. It would take more than pot to get me to spend time with Larry King…….creeeeee…..peeeee!

  14. Not to be outdone, King conducted the interview while cheating on his latest wife with the young woman hiding under his desk.

  15. the deal with tolerance: local vs global.

    locally, if you smoke a shit-ton, you will develop tolerance.

    globally, the more weed you smoke, the more easily you find your way back. smoke for years, don’t for a week, and take a hit, and you get far more out of it than does a newbie taking a single toke.

    the former is a question of receptor down-regulation, the later likely more of a cognitive issue.

  16. How did we get to 33 comments without the following recursive comment?

    ‘I was going to comment, but didn’t get around to it.’

    Yeesh people, we have tropes to trot out here.

    I note that we also haven’t had the gun toting right wing freedom warrior/crack down on teh lozer druggiez poster yet, bringing in his irrelevant anecdotes and random connections. It’s like the internet went on vacation.

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