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Ep.174: Terryn Niles Buxton, Oakland Extracts & Neill Franklin, LEAP: MCBA Spotlight

Cannabis Economy Podcast
Ep.174: Terryn Niles Buxton, Oakland Extracts & Neill Franklin, LEAP: MCBA Spotlight

Ep.174: Terryn Niles Buxton, Oakland Extracts & Neill Franklin, LEAP: MCBA Spotlight

Terryn Niles Buxton of Oakland Extracts discusses his rich history in Northern California Cannabis.  We touch on philosophy, jazz and even race relations from a Generation X perspective. But first Neill Franklin returns.  Based on his 30+ years of policing service, he shares his thoughts on what can be done to bridge the current societal divide. We talk about the concept of one community and one race.
A MCBA Spotlight episode.

Transcript:

Speaker 2: Terry niles Buxton of oakland extracts discusses his rich history in northern California, cannabis. We touched on philosophy, jazz, and even race relations From a generation x perspective, but first neil franklin returns based on his 30 plus years of policing service. He shares his thoughts on what can be done to bridge the current societal divine. Talk about the concept of one community and one race walk into cannabis economy. I'm your host seth adler. Check us out on social with the hand mechanic economy. Incidentally, you do still have an opportunity to nominate those deserving to the third annual can awards accountable to keep in mind is a three foot handled, three pound head actual sledgehammer with the cannabinoids logo emblazoned on the handle. You've got a host of industry luminaries on the candlewoods advisory board and a number of categories. This would be your last chance to nominate by September 1st can of woodstock.

Speaker 1: All right, so we've goT a neil franklin back again. Neil, thanks for giving us some time here.

Speaker 4: Yeah, it's my pleasure being back, seth. Thanks for having me.

Speaker 1: You got it. So, you know, I appreciate talking to you no matter what's happening. Um, but we've got, you know, a specific situation going on, uh, you know, first time in my memory in my lifetime, uh, since rodney king early nineties and all that, people aren't getting along and so, uh, you're, you're the first person I thought of as far as, you know, making sure to have the conversation and I guess is that where to start, you know?

Speaker 4: ABsolutely. And um, you know, that word conversation and we're starting to see some, uh, around the country regarding this topic of police and community relations and, and so, uh, mainly with communities of color and uh, you know, stuff. The problem is, is that their conversations, their, it's not communication, it's for the most part. What I've seen thus far is people talking. They're talking at, into, in past one another, but are they really communicating as to understanding and feeling the other person's perspective, doing their very best to place themselves in the shoes of the other person and then deciding on a course forward where everyone benefits were things actually improve and it has to be a collective decision. It can't be one group of one side deciding to do something absent the other.

Speaker 1: Yeah. So as far as leap is concerned, obviously you've got law enforcement professionals, uh, that have, uh, you know, come to a different place as far as, you know, being a part of the organization. Uh, these are not folks that were, you know, these are not original cannabis enthusiasts. Um, so as far as the, the framework of that conversation, how has that worked? You know, if we're talking about law enforcement, how has that conversation worked? Um, and then maybe that can kind of guide us with, uh, with these other conversations that need to happen.

Speaker 4: One of the unique things about bleed that some people don't know is that we are an organization that talks about policy, ineffective policy and effective policy. You know, so when we, when we talk about the drug war, when we talk about marijuana and when we talk about the other drugs, we're not advocating for the drug, we're not advocating against the drug. We're talking about the policy which we manage the drug and, and, and so that's, this is, this is commerce. This is central to what this issue that we're talking about here. So we, the cops and prosecutors and judges within the community, you know, for us it's uh, it's about the policy for managing these drugs and other policy that we had, things that we had the police doing that they maybe should not be doing. What are we talking about? Well, we'll think about it.

Speaker 2: Terry niles Buxton of oakland extracts discusses his rich history in northern California, cannabis. We touched on philosophy, jazz, and even race relations From a generation x perspective, but first neil franklin returns based on his 30 plus years of policing service. He shares his thoughts on what can be done to bridge the current societal divine. Talk about the concept of one community and one race walk into cannabis economy. I'm your host seth adler. Check us out on social with the hand mechanic economy. Incidentally, you do still have an opportunity to nominate those deserving to the third annual can awards accountable to keep in mind is a three foot handled, three pound head actual sledgehammer with the cannabinoids logo emblazoned on the handle. You've got a host of industry luminaries on the candlewoods advisory board and a number of categories. This would be your last chance to nominate by September 1st can of woodstock.

Speaker 1: All right, so we've goT a neil franklin back again. Neil, thanks for giving us some time here.

Speaker 4: Yeah, it's my pleasure being back, seth. Thanks for having me.

Speaker 1: You got it. So, you know, I appreciate talking to you no matter what's happening. Um, but we've got, you know, a specific situation going on, uh, you know, first time in my memory in my lifetime, uh, since rodney king early nineties and all that, people aren't getting along and so, uh, you're, you're the first person I thought of as far as, you know, making sure to have the conversation and I guess is that where to start, you know?

Speaker 4: ABsolutely. And um, you know, that word conversation and we're starting to see some, uh, around the country regarding this topic of police and community relations and, and so, uh, mainly with communities of color and uh, you know, stuff. The problem is, is that their conversations, their, it's not communication, it's for the most part. What I've seen thus far is people talking. They're talking at, into, in past one another, but are they really communicating as to understanding and feeling the other person's perspective, doing their very best to place themselves in the shoes of the other person and then deciding on a course forward where everyone benefits were things actually improve and it has to be a collective decision. It can't be one group of one side deciding to do something absent the other.

Speaker 1: Yeah. So as far as leap is concerned, obviously you've got law enforcement professionals, uh, that have, uh, you know, come to a different place as far as, you know, being a part of the organization. Uh, these are not folks that were, you know, these are not original cannabis enthusiasts. Um, so as far as the, the framework of that conversation, how has that worked? You know, if we're talking about law enforcement, how has that conversation worked? Um, and then maybe that can kind of guide us with, uh, with these other conversations that need to happen.

Speaker 4: One of the unique things about bleed that some people don't know is that we are an organization that talks about policy, ineffective policy and effective policy. You know, so when we, when we talk about the drug war, when we talk about marijuana and when we talk about the other drugs, we're not advocating for the drug, we're not advocating against the drug. We're talking about the policy which we manage the drug and, and, and so that's, this is, this is commerce. This is central to what this issue that we're talking about here. So we, the cops and prosecutors and judges within the community, you know, for us it's uh, it's about the policy for managing these drugs and other policy that we had, things that we had the police doing that they maybe should not be doing. What are we talking about? Well, we'll think about it.

Speaker 4: So here's an example that most of your listeners are probably familiar with, cOps, cops in schools and there was a, I think it might've been South Carolina, where there's this video of the police officer pulling this young girl out of her seat and flinging her around like a rag doll to handcuff her to remove her from the classroom. Right? All because this young lady did not want to leave the classroom. She wasn't assaulting anyone, you know, she wasn't throwing things around, he wasn't busting up the place, she was sitting in a chair refusing to leave. There are administrative processes and things that the school teachers, administrators could have done and not call a police officer to deal with that situation.

Speaker 1: Right? Yeah. So, so we've got a little bit of construction happening here. I don't know if folks will be able to hear it, but when you talk about maybe that's where a police officer doesn't need to be, let's now flash forward to, to uh, to dallas where police officers absolutely a world where they needed to be and you run into trouble. And then the kind of ensuing response to that because I, I'm getting the sense that, that was closest to what we're going for.

Speaker 4: Absolutely. So here's, here's the thing with the situation in dallas, obviously, you know, peaceful protesting is one of our first amendment rights in this country. Thank god because that's how we make so many changes for things. So you had a group of folks who were protesting and obviously what the police do, the police are and should be there to ensure their safety and the safety of others who are in the area and that's what they were doing in dallas. Dallas, they have done a lot of work over the years in working to improve police community relationships and that's what they were doing. They were, they're allowing for the protest to, to occur, making sure that everyone will be safe. And unfortunately we had this lone wolf who is dealing with mental, I'm sorry, who's dealing with unresolved mental health issues, who takes it upon himself. He is not connected to this protest in any way but takes it upon himself to take aim upon a number of police officers and ended up killing five police officers.

Speaker 4: Um, and yet, you know, and again, these police officers, when the shots started, where did they go? They ran too. They ran to the problem not away from the problem. And there were a couple of times where they actually prevented others protestors from being injured by this, this lone wolf person. Now, post shooting the police department, a police chief have vowed to continue in the direction they were headed before in maintaining police effect, a police community relations, they're not gonna let this lone wolf, uh, uh, put them in a place that's going to drive them away from community if anything at all. It's going to bring them closer to community and luckily they have a police chief who recognizes this and is doing the right things to ensure that the men and women in his department continue to embrace the community and, and to work at getting closer and closer and closer to the community.

Speaker 1: And so that right there kind of puts into a site exactly what you're talking about. conversation versus action, you know, community dialogue. What is the role of the community? In other words, what is our responsibility if we've got, you know, an effective police chief in dallas and they're doing the right things from a, from the police side of things, what is the community's responsibility?

Speaker 4: So obviously the police being public servants serving, serving, serving, that is our number one priority to serve the public, their community. So with that, it is the first responsibility of the poliCe department of government to reach out to the community to ensure that they are doing things that the community approves of, you know, testing the waters, checking the temperature, hey, are we serving you right? Are we doing things the right way? Are we handling things the right way? How do you feel about the service we're providing to you and what can we do better? First and foremost, police department's responsibility. They had the power to for that, you know, for them to take that step. Now the community now has a responsibility to be responsive to, to support a police department that does this who is doing things the right way, who is checking the temperature, who is, who is extending a hand to them and an opportunity to respond to the service, the type of service and quality of service.

Speaker 4: So it's up to the community to to then respond to that, to embrace that and to become part of that, to engage in a productive communication With the police department and to keep it going back. You don't do this one time in the year, throughout the year, you don't do it once a month. You do it on a daily consistent basis, keeping those lines of communication open so you have effective a communication going on and you can resolve problems in. One of the things that I always say that when you have this type of interaction, when something does go wrong, you know what? Because if things go wrong, things mistakes are made and, and you know, bad things happen from time to time, but when you had this type of dialogue and the communication and interaction, when that does occur, you know what you can resolve that, you can deal with that. You can answer their questions right away and it doesn't evolve into something else, something bad, you know, a violent type protest or people acting it out. We've seen those things. For instance, in baltimore, which is my hometown.

Speaker 1: Right, right. So, uh, well I guess then, what is your sense of, of where we are in the continuum of this issue? Um, we, we had a number of issues over the past few weeks. Do you think that we're kind of moving towards the right a side of things? Obviously there's a lot of work to be done. Where do you think we are?

Speaker 4: I think that now that we have everyone's attention, yeah, we have an opportunity now. Things haven't, in my opinion, haven't begun to move far enough to where we can say, okay, here we go. We're, we're starting. We're moving in the right directions. No, we're just at a, at a point of having everyone's attention now what we need to do. We need to follow up on things that had been said. Again, like chief brown from dallas. He's made the comment over and over again that we're giving you the police. Too many things to do. Unfortunately, the police seem to be that last stop for things that society either can't or doesn't want to deal with. You know, we're dealing with a lot of people who have mental health issues and you know, what the police in many cases on handling and those, uh, those incidents properly, we ended up hurting a lot of people who have mental health issues and the police were called to deal with it.

Speaker 4: You know, again, we, we have our drug war, you know, we're, we're arresting people day after day after day after day. People who are addicted to drugs and they need medical attention. They don't need jails in courtrooms. Okay. So first let's start working on the policy, sit down and say, okay, what do we have the police doing? What should we not have been doing? What should be handled by another part of our society? Do that. And then number two, this is very important. I, it drives me crazy when I hear people talking about the police and the community as two separate entities. Us versus them. Even the term stuff either even the term partnership I hate because that means you are two separate organizations trying to work together. No, no, it is one community period. and the police are a part of that community. We have to figure that out and there is a way to do it. We are sending police leaders to countries in europe like the uk and scotland, to figure out why they do this better than we do. And it's because of nine basic principles of policing called the pili improv principles,

Speaker 1: which we've heard you talk about protecting you ahead.

Speaker 4: Absolutely. We need who we, we, we don't have to go over there and do all this research or how they don't just adopted nine basic policing principles that most countries do and use and those principles clearly identify a number of things that we're trying to solve here in this country. Such as what I just mentioned about being a partnership. No, no partnership. One in the same principle. Principle number seven says this, the police are the community and the community are. The principle number one speaks to the militarization of policing. No, the police are the exception to a military force within, within the community dealing with you know, laws and so on. So, uh, and then, and there's more and more, it even talks about excessive force and so on. So let's adopt those nine basic policing principles and, um, and in doing so, what we need to do, we need to literally this assemble law enforcement policing here in the United States and rebuild it.

Speaker 4: Let's not try to fix something that has never worked appropriately in this country from the, from the beginning. Okay. It's like, it's like spending money month after month after month on a, on a used car that continues to break down. Let me tell you folks, that car's not going to get any better. You're just goiNg to continue to repair it and repair it, repair it, just buy a new car. One it has the technology one that's designed to do what we wanted to do. So matter oF fact, let's build it ourselves. and that's what we needed to do with policing a new policing model

Speaker 1: based on those nine principles. So we will, we'll post those with, with this interview. Um, you know, and I appreciate the, the approach here, which is there, why are we talking about the fact that we need a partnership? Uh, we're one in the same. I saw a thing on race. um, there's only one race, the human race, right?

Speaker 4: You know, I'm not so glad you mentioned that because you know what, I would suggest that every single person on this planet do to get a dna test. When you get a dna test and you start looking at your history of where your family is from, where you are from, you'll realize very quickly, oh damn, there is just one race, the human race. We're all cousins. Oh my god, that happened. Really?

Speaker 1: Yeah, there's a, there's a distinct answer to how that happened, but that's not what this show covers. Absolutely. So, so neil, I guess we'll end on a lighter note. We're already kind of there as far as being on a lighter note, but uh, give us one song on the soundtrack of neil franklin. Slide four for today. What's a, what's a track that's got to be on there?

Speaker 4: Oh my god. Is, this is interesting. You know, um, oh, what's the name of it? There's a good friend of mine who died many years ago. He was a song writer. His name is skip scarborough and he's written songs for earth, wind and fire. He's written songs for a anita baker. So many people, Denise Williams, he's just a great guy and every one of his songs always seems to have the word love it. And there was one that he wrote, um, a, and I can't the title of it, but I'm leaving your listeners with this google, google's, skip scarborough and any song that he is written is my song for today because that young man was about love. He was pure love.

Speaker 1: Alright. Skip scarborough. It doesn't get enough love. How about that? Amen. Neil will check. Uh, we'll keep checking back with you on this. Okay. And hopefully we'll make some headway here. Alright. Thanks a lot sir.

Speaker 2: Thank you. This episode is also supported by gateway. Gateway is the business accelerator of the cannabis industry. Born out of silicon valley. They find the best startups and top tier founding teams and then provide them with seed capital. A structured curriculum proven in silicon valley, beautiful office space partnership deals worth over a hundred thousand dollars and custom curated mentorship through an amazing network of top experts from both silicon valley and the cannabis industry. Gateway is now accepting applications for their next cohort beginning in october. if you have any questions or want to apply, visit gateway incubator.com. Okay. So, uh, we've got taren niles buxton that is quite a name, sir, uh, out of oakland running oakland extracts and uh, you know, happy to be talking to ya.

Speaker 1: I know that you guys are in a, a bunch of great dispensary's, uh, in this area. And so we want it to kind of get some background on that. How are you doing?

Speaker 5: I'm doing excellent. How are you

Speaker 1: doing all right. How did it, uh, how did it all kind of start happening as far as you know, the extracts and realizing that it was a, a sellable product. So before you went into dispensary's, when did you realize what you had?

Speaker 5: Well, originally it started with another friend of mine who I worked at harbor side with. We got together to work on doing cold water hash and edibles. They're not super profitable, but we're very passionate about then we're kind of going in that direction and in the process of going in that direction, we, um, we, they were my roommate and my partner was doing, was doing a few extracts with another friend of ours and those were selling literally quickly and selling a lot easier than anything else we were doing. And so as we were Talking about expanding our product line, we're doing so well with this one area. We kept pushing back, okay, we'll worry about cold water later. We're worried about edibles later and the extracts kept taking off and then at a certain point the clubs wanted everything branded at first. Bergey clubs wanting things.

Speaker 5: Brandon, they just kind of wanted to be able to package things themselves. But as there became a demand for more branded products because we had more uh, or extra conference coming up from la with really nice packaging clubs. One is to go that direction. I got with a great graphic designer. we've got a good logo, we've got a good package. And once we started doing that, we just couldn't keep up with demand and now we're just trying to, struggling to keep up all the time because every new club we add more demand, more customers. People really love the product and the um, and the packaging. And so we've been trying to keep up with that so much. It forced us to put all of our other endeavors, the back burner.

Speaker 6: okay. All right. Well let's, let's kind of unpack this as far as oakland extracts though then, is that name basically in kind of a response to what was coming up from la and saying, hey, here's some hometown product for you.

Speaker 5: ThInk about it like that at the time. But it certainly become that designer. We needed to come up with the name. And so we're kicking around names left and right. And some names were just way too. I'm just way, way too unprofessional. And then we're just trying to figure we wanted something that waS not too generic or something else strAight up and describe who we were. And I'm from oakland, born and raised in oakland. And so the people in the industry around here are from here, so I'm out of towners that I kinda started telling you this is actually us, and then all the material that we were getting was from oakland and so I was like, we should really brand this around oakland. And my partner was the graphiC designer who came up with an amazing logo and then we just rolled from there.

Speaker 6: Okay. Now, um, if I'm, if I'm kind of seeing you correctly because we're on a facetime here, I'm guessing that you remember ricky henderson the second time he was on the oakland a's, maybe not the first time.

Speaker 5: Oh, 41. So familiar with him both times.

Speaker 6: Okay. Both times. Excellent. uh, that, that's a guy who, uh, who knew how to run, had a little bit of power. I mean, that's one of the greatest baseball players of all time. People don't know that.

Speaker 5: Yeah. Yeah, it was amazing.

Speaker 6: He's a, he's on a lot of lists. All right, so you're, you're definitely oakland, uh, you know, so let's call it oakland extracts. Um, you know, obviously there's a demand. You're, you're in dispensary's. Um, and then all of a sudden you're rebranding, you had a relationship with harbor site to begin with. So obviously that helped you in those doors. Is that about right?

Speaker 5: I actually went to them later to them after we got him. Pretty much every other dispensary in the east bay. I didn't want to prey upon that relationship. It also was a 100 percent sure where they stood with that. I mean like I left on good terms and it was all love but still it's so tough being a vendor there and people have to cut it. I honestly have to jump through hoops but you definitely have to come back repeatedly and we have thick skin and try to get in there. And so I just kinda wanted us to build up our brand and build up a reputation outside of their first one. I actually came there, I could say, I could talk about the appreciation and the love we're getting from patients outside of there and I wanted them to kind of be aware of who we were when I came in as opposed to just trying to come in and pray brother friendships, the people that have the buying room. And so I went to, um, like I said, I went to pretty much all the other clubs in the east bay. First went to harborside side later and uh, they welcomed me back with open arms.

Speaker 6: That's fantastic. That's a, that shows that you are a man of principle if, uh, if nothing else. So that's, that's cool. As far as the first then dispensary, that kind of said yes. Uh, do you remember which one it was and how that all went down?

Speaker 5: I think it was bpg. I'm not really sure because we had, we had been doing a bulk orders for awhile and that was just grinding, just going, asking everyone all the time. Sometimes my son said, yeah, sometimes they didn't because you're competing with all these other people were selling book. I mean, really there's the extract concentrated game has rather concentrate market has changed dramatically in the past three years. Originally it was, um, literally you're just in line with a bunch of people who had huge slabs and pizza boxes or other containers and they're just kind of picking up things as they needed them. Not based on like the quality or the brand because they cold call. It was changing from batch to batch so quickly once we started being prepackaged, things changed. But white already kinda had some established relationships from the us selling it in the book form.

Speaker 5: And a lot of that came not from the quality of the product is just knowing how to interact with buyers. Years ago I had been a, I grew a cultivators so I had a lot of flowers and so I had a lot of experience with going to clubs. I know that the key to getting your product to up picked up by clubs is going in there with no ego and no pressure. You just offer it to them need tell them, I don't care if you pick it up. now I just want to show you what I'm working on. You'll leave a lot of samples and you just be very passive because they have so many people coming in who are so desperate, so many people who can't pay their rent or other bills and these people are putting all this pressure on these buyers and buyers.

Speaker 5: Main job is creative ways of saying no. The reality is that they only have so much budget any given day. No matter how good your product is. Often they have to say no to kind of fit in the scheme of what they need at that moment, which isn't necessarily the best of the best. They need things at certain price points on different days, so just to kind of knowing that they're under pressure all the time going in there and just kind of think, no pressure. There's no pressure sales all the time, like I don't care if you take it or not. I'm doing great. I just want to. You show you where we're working on. I just want to see where. I just want you to see where we're at and just leave stuff for them and I'll be back in two weeks and there's no pressure there.

Speaker 5: Neither. And I got to the point where at the buyers were telling me that I was one of the most pleasant people they dealt with all day because it was at one island, have no stress in a field, just hours of these people coming in and stressing them out. So by the time we were package, I'd had such a good relationship with so many places they're eager to take us on and um, and so and so I just kind of capitalize on those relationships and drop, drop it in there. So I think bbg might've been the first, but I can't really say because we had had other products, other places

Speaker 6: it totally understood. and, and, uh, that's just good advice as far as sales is concerned. I, uh, you know, and that's uh, you know, they take the pressure off, let it, let, let them decide, give them a good product and you know, and all that. As, as far as though you mentioned how the extracts market has changed so much over the course of three years, you mentioned coming in, uh, with big slabs and pizza boxes and then, you know, graduating to a place now where you do have to have elegant product in elegant packaging. Um, you know, talk about that trajectory from, from your perspective, when did you, you know, besides them asking you for that packaging, when did you realize that you needed to not only have packaging and not only have branding but that it needed to be kind of top notch?

Speaker 5: Actually, we were really lucky. I had been bending the slabs to a lot of different clubs and there's a few clubs that had a branded extracts up from la. They had bam hgh, some moxie, some of the bigger people from down south. actually, I'm not sure where is from. I know bam and hgh are from down south and um, and we wanted to kind of go that direction, but places like harbor side and a few other big places and actively didn't want branded products. And it wasn't until a dank man, nick from wounds, it was on. Thanks man. Extracts. Um, he, um, he was really encouraging. He, he's told us, hey you guys, stuff is phenomenal. And because he was how he was doing some buying for a few places and he told us you guys should really start thinking about branding. It's that good.

Speaker 5: And I was like, I don't know, it's expensive and a couple of the big places don't want it. And he's like, everyone's going to be there in less than a year. Get on it now. And it wasn't, it's a process. You got to figure out where the right package and you want it to be unique and different from other people and you want to make sure you can source enough of it and the prices right. And then getting a graphic designer, a good graphic designers complicated because they're fairly expensive. So finding someone who will work well with you on other kind of budget you have. So I started kind of going down that road because dank man encouraged us to. And by the time we actually settled on the right packaging and the right logo, harborside and some of the other big places were like, okay, we're ready now.

Speaker 5: We want this now. And so everything kind of coincided because we got good advice from someone else in the industry. And that's really amazing because dang man, because he has so many of his own products on the market, you could have easily said nothing. I mean he, he created his competition, you know, we could have kept doing our thing and slobs. He has all of this breadth of branded, packaged product everywhere and he couldn't really been buying it from us in bulk and repackage and you get it done whatever you want to do. And instead of. He encouraged us out of love. And that's when the good things about the cannabis industrY is. Even though there is a lot of capitalism involved, you still find these people who are more, have a more cooperative mindset when weren't willing to encourage and help other people. And so a lot we owe a lot of where we are now, not just to the hard work of the people involved with us, but encouragement from people like dank man and if in the buyer that may head buyer at bbg, but berkeley patients group, he was really, really helpful all along the way.

Speaker 5: Going from bulk sales to package sales and is giving us really good advice. And we've just been really lucky to have good people around us.

Speaker 6: Yeah, we hear that a lot. You know, we hear that a kind of. We are all in this together. The rising tide lifts all boats philosophy, um, you know, through and through. All right. So let's, let's go back to, uh, when, when you first realized that maybe you should get a job at harborside health center.

Speaker 5: Yeah. I had been doing some cultivation. I'm originally, I started in the nonprofit world, been working with nonprofits in oakland, working with at risk youth and adults just getting out of jail and it programs like that. And I had a friend of mine who was involved in cultivation and I just started kind of helping him out because he had helped me out on a previous web project and um, he was really good at computers and all that and so in an exchange for all the help that he had given me and one of my friends, I started helping him in his garden and it just kinda turned out that I had a green thumb and I worked in his garden for a couple of years and his friends were really impressive to work I was doing. And so they help set up a little garden in my place.

Speaker 5: And I started doing that and I got so into that that I stopped working full time and I was full time cultivating and I loved it. but, um, it can be a very isolating activity. And especially as my previous jobs had been, I was very much in the community working with different community programs, working with a lot of young people. And so I was kind of used to having a lot of human interaction. And you go from dealing with people all the time. It's kind of working by yourself. It's a big, big adjustment. And um, I used to go to harborside just as a patient and I would kind of go there at the end of the day right before they closed, not because I needed anything, just it was nice to get some human interaction and it was great to talk to the people there because the bud tenders were so knowledgeable.

Speaker 5: I'm in my house doing all This work on my own and I could ask this bud tenders and they knew all this different information about strain history in different feeding regimens and just different techniques at different growers we're using. Every time I went there it was like going to the library. It just blew my mind. I was learning so much. and at a certain point if you're going there almost every day just to say hi and you're learning so much and you obviously have the time because when you cultivate your really buSy during certain periods, but you have lows in there as well. I decided that maybe I should just start working there. And I did and I had a great time and I loved it. And um, yeah, that's how I wound up there just, just had a desire to have more human interaction during the cultivating and to learn more about and figure if I'm going to do this for a living, I should learn as much as I possibly can in this one building holds more knowledge about this and the place that I go. So I figured I spend more time there.

Speaker 6: Yeah. That one building certainly does hold a tremendous amount of ip, so to speak. Uh, What about the community work you were doing?

Speaker 5: A lot of education in my family. My parents, my grandparents, great grandparents on one side all went to college and it's kind of always want to think on my mom's side of the family that when folks get out of college, they do at least a year or two of community service in one form or another. And so all of my cousins did that. My mom did that. Her siblings did that when they were, when they were younger. And so I was just kinda following, following the footsteps of everyone else in my family doing a year or two, uh, community service work after college. And um, I just kind of really enjoyed it. I, um, I love working with youth and I've, I came from a background where things were very comfortable. I was very aware of the struggle that people were haviNg, but I was very aware that I didn't have that same struggle and seeing so many young people just trying to have basic, have trouble doing basic things like holding down a job. You kind oF want to be involved in, you want to do something and uh, once you kinda get into the nonprofit world and get into working with at risk youth or just getting more, we're getting to work with any population in need. It can be very gratifying. And so instead of just doing a year that I wonder if doing more like four or five years of it. And um, yeah,

Speaker 6: that's amazing. What, what, uh, I guess what was a key piece of advice that you seem to consistently provide?

Speaker 5: They have to learn how to speak to people differently. I was always speak to people at home and amongst our friends and family. They'll work in a professional setting and we have to learn how to speak in a professional setting that's different from where we grew up and we have to learn how to separate our feelings from our experiences. I meaN there's kind of no matter how you feel, you go to work and you present a certain way and a lot of folks from different backgrounds don't understand how much of playing the game as part of the real world and they feel like the game of somehow selling out and it's really not. It's like you have to be able to go to work no matter how you feel and you have to be able to present well. You have to be polite to people.

Speaker 5: You have to interact well. You have to avoid conflict at all costs and you have to be accepting that sometimes your bosses or sometimes your peers are going to have bad days and you can react. A lot of, a lot of folks from different communities can be very reactionary. They can now not like how so and split spoke to them, perceive it as a challenge and go after that challenge and sometimes you just have to let them just walk away from stuff like that, know that you have a different mission in mind, you have a goal that you're going after and you can't let little people and their personalities get in the way because people often need for to focus. People will trY to knock you off what you're doing and so people will try to get a reaction out of you and you can't let that reaction come and I can be a hot headed person.

Speaker 5: And the people that I worked with knew me quite well. So they knew what I was talking about. The importance of like separating your emotions from what's going on around you. They knew that I spoke from experience that it's hard sometimes, but you just have to. Um, it's a behavior attitude. So it all attitude. I mean, you've got to have a positive attitude. You have to work hard no matter what happens around you, no matter what's going on around you, no matter what anyone else's personal situation is, you know that you have to have a good attitude and you must work hard and working hard, working hard and being nice. I studied philosophy in college and I studied a lot of complicated german philosophers and the most useful thing I learned was from a book of no, it wasn't even about chinese philosophy, just a book about someone's experiences trying to and so it just kind of gave him that advice about just most things in life can be achieved by working hard and being nice and trying to just incorporate that into my daily life and teaching that to the young people that worked with us was important and most useful for finished makes no I ever gotten ever tried to give anybody else's work hard as you can and just be nice to everybody and you'll get what you want.

Speaker 6: Work hard and be nice. And, and the other one, you know, kind of taking emotion out of it. You say you speak from experience that, that is, that's just great. IT, uh, you know, kind of advice for anybody, you know, young people, old people, everybody in between without question. Um, so, you know, you, you worked at harbor side, you were growing before that, you know, you've got years of experience in the northern California cannabis scene and just as a person that has that knowledge and has that experience, what can you tell us about where we've been and where we are now? Uh, you know, as far as nor cal cannabis

Speaker 5: where been is a lot of people trying to figure out how to be professionals and there's always been a lot of growers and as the industry has become, there's so much more money involved in so much more competition. It was trYing to step their game up. So you're seeing a lot of small mom and pop operation is trying to scale up and be prepared for uh, the, the money that's coming in with recreational and just expansion of medical. And um, So it's just interesting. I mean, I mean it was when I worked at harborside only branded products that we had with edibles and topicals. Now you're seeing branded cannabis at all these different places. We have the marley naturals line, have all these celebrity lines of cannabis coming out. And then, uh, I guess really the vape pen thing is out of control. Everyone. Everyone's vaping.

Speaker 5: So many people that can move into the state for modesty buying ceo, two machines, having no idea what they're doing, putting out this inferior product, wondering why it's not selling and losing all their money. I mean, it's just fascinating just seeing what money does two things and how you brings in all these different people have gone from going to these cannabis cups and just seeing just your typical cannabis user looking people walking around to now there's investors and investor forums and people in suits and people who've never smoked cannabis, but they're tryIng to figure out how to throw millions of dollars into our industry. And so it's just watching that transition of his home, small home based businesses to kind of corporate America. And I mean there's the good, the bad and the ugly involved in that. I mean at some point when I was talking to somebody last night about how we still need to regulate the labs, it doesn't make any sense at the same products coming on with such vastly different numbers from one lab to the next and someone's going to is going to make that stop someone's gonna, get all these labs together and have them come up with a consistent number or make them go away.

Speaker 5: And I don't know if it's going to be the state or it's going to be our industry is going to try to regulate itself or if the state bureau of medical, whatever the state bureau of marijuana regulations, whatever bummer is, whatever the state state level, the state level of organization that they're forming, someone's going to have to start regulating all that.

Speaker 6: That's it. That's it. The only note I would uh, put into to. Do you share just there, you mentioned I'm a adult use as though it already happened and I just want to make sure that we know that we still gotta pass prop 64, you know, it's still got a good.

Speaker 5: That's scary to jUst. I'm nervous. I'm very nervous about alma of very nervous. I'm very nervous about all of this. I'm very nervous about how regulation is going to change what we do and how outside money's gonna have sex with. We're doing distribution idea and transportations. They'll have some scary things written in there and it's going to change a lot of change. A lot of people's businesses.

Speaker 6: The distribution piece is, uh, is certainly an interesting one. You can listen to the most recent, uh, episode, uh, with steve d'angelo of harborside who talks explicitly about that. He's got some specific points of view so you know that that's where we are and I guess you're excited. You're nervous, you're busy as heck and uh, you know, you're doing it. So I guess it's time for our three final questions. I'll tell you what they are and then I'll ask you them in order. First question is, what has most surprised you in cannabis? Second question is, what has most surprised you in life? And then the third question is on the soundtrack of your life, what is one track? one song that's got to be on there? So first things first, what has most surprised you in cannabis?

Speaker 5: Oh wow. I'm going to city council meetings and hearing city council debating how to create dispensary's, how to get more licenses. Just seeing the city government and in the state government is so actively involved in it. It blows my mind. I just go to city council meetings and they're all just talking about pot. We're hiding the fact that were spoken, but it's just seeing how normal it is and seeing government agencies trying to figure out ways to regulate it and seeing like the city staff, seeing people in the city council actively striving for more. They're like, we can. We can do more than eight stretchers. We can have 16. I mean seeing them pushing the limit to what we can do is just been a shock.

Speaker 6: It's amazing. It really is. You and I are about the same age and uh, if you were to talk to either of us in high school we would have said not happening. Exactly. Alright. What has most surprised you in life?

Speaker 5: I just turned 41. I think just the forties or shocking thing. I mean you're kinda just blissfully going along enjoying stuff and then they throw a four in front of your number and it's like holy shit, I need to do something before I die. And so like the fact like I used to sleep in late and he used to be really relaxed. I used to always want to go on trips now, like I tried to go on vacation a couple months ago and it made me sick. I was gone for three days. I just had anxiety. I was like, I need to get back to work. I need to be doing something. Time is limited. Like I don't like taking days off. I don't like I just, I'm busy all the time and I want to be. I find myself waking up early in the morning when I have to and just with this feeling like I got to get something done and if we're coming from a person who was trying to sleep until noon everyday to waking up at like 7:00 in the morning with a cold sweat, wonder what I'm supposed to do next. That's been shocking.

Speaker 6: Yeah, no, totally. This vacation is stressing me out. I got to get it back to work. yeah. Oh man. Every entrepreneur knows exactly what you're talking about. Um, so that, that final question could be easy, could be difficult on the soundtrack of taran niles buxton's life. What is one track? One song that's got to be on there

Speaker 5: that's so hard.

Speaker 5: I mean, I don't even know how to answer that. I guess something by miles davis. Like my dad had jazz clubs when I was growing up, so I grew up hearing jazz perpetually in the back of it, like in the house all the time. MoRe than new tonight. So just out of respect for him, I better say something from miles in terms of like, what am I going to go listen to you right now, listen to push it to you right now. I don't think my dad would really appreciate that. I guess in light of everything that's going on, she has a song, a sunshine where he's kind of talking about police brutality and what's going on with that, that I'm really enjoying that, but we're just something from miles davis. That's the safest.

Speaker 6: Anything from miles davis bitches brew on there that'll do

Speaker 5: bitches brew anything. Obviously kind of blue is like, I've heard that probably more times than I've heard the national anthem that's burned in my brain. I think my dad would be mad if I didn't mention sonny rollins. Yes.

Speaker 6: Rollins. He's the best.

Speaker 5: Yes. And then, um, so some, some, some kind of jazz.

Speaker 6: Did you meet any, uh, you know, I'm sure you've met a bunch of folks at those jazz clubs, anybody's name that kind of non jazz fans would know.

Speaker 5: No, no one, like really, really famous. I mean, people came around, but usually when I was there, it's just like the house band, this guy named vincent, vince lottie auto was a drummer, just just the, these, these, these, just fixtures in the jazz community services, good jazz community. And um, it just. And so knowing, knowing rick really, really major, but uh, just a lot of amazing older guys who had crazy stories. I'm the craziest stories I ever heard. We're down in the dressing room with old jazz guys talking about being on the road 40 years ago. And you had to keep a switchblade in your, in your, in your equipment case because you never knew what kind of jumped stuff is about to jump off. And just being in the jazz, come seeing these old timers, like they're kind of hard. I mean they come from a different era that always blew my mind. And like when they're in their childhood jazz kind of like wrap, it was like their parents didn't like it. It was kinda a little of a two street and it was like. And it was like innocent. Now it's such like, you know, the date and music is something you're on the elevator, you don't think about these guys getting in fights, but I saw like these old guys try to jump up and down young guys and it was hilarious.

Speaker 6: Some of those guys were bad dudes.

Speaker 5: Yeah. All of them kind of work. Even the ones that you think we're square, I mean, you will get jumped by a big band. I mean, and they will all get onto the tuba. Players going to get on, you know what I mean? So it's just fascinating just being around all those people and uh, and just any artists in general, just being around people who are heavily into their craft gives you appreciation for what you can be doing with your life and you can be striving to make money or it can be striving to be better at something that just people enjoy. And I really treasure that.

Speaker 6: Hey, you know, it's a, it's a strange way to end, but you brought it up. So I would be remiss if I didn't pick up on it. Um, you mentioned, uh, you know, what's going on and we got a little bit of a problem here for the first time in our lives, you and me, since basically the early nineties, you know, that that's the last time I can remember anything that closely resembles what's going on. You know, uh, you're an african american guy. I'm a jewish guy. What's the solution here? What, what do we need to do as a community, as a, you know, as humans.

Speaker 5: I mean, it's tough. I mean the coy answer would be more sex with more people of other races, more interracial babies. There are because you can't hate your grandbaby emulate. And it's kind of happening. This happened so much in the south with so many kind of racist, closed minded people have had their lives changed by the fact that someone in their family chooses to interact with someone from that side and you get changed like that. But that's obviously, it's kind of ridiculous as an answer. I mean the most basic answers, just common understanding. I mean like we were all human. Everybody's trying to figure this out by. No one was born with an instruction manual. Everyone's scared, confused, alone, tryIng to figure this out and just appreciating and understanding that. I mean, but that doesn't say anything when your baby just got shot by the cops or when your brother or uncle or whoever these cops are getting when you, then that's your family who's being attacked and being heard.

Speaker 5: Just telling people just to understand one another is obviously isn't enough. I think um, I mean on some level if I wish the news and the media was more responsible about their coverage. I just did the images they choose to show kind of insight, more racism and more anger, more frustration. I mean, when I look at the coverage, I mean not, not, I don't blame fox fox obviously a joke, but like I guess I've kinda blamed cnn because cnn has responded to fox by trying to up the level of their ridiculousness and then they're, they're hard to take serious. And just, I feel like sometimes the coverage kind of pits groups against one another and, but then again they're doing it. Those are just people with their jobs trying to keep their jobs with ratings and all that, so I don't. I don't know.

Speaker 6: Is it better to not show what just happened either to one side or the other?

Speaker 5: WhAt happened, but who you choose to interview. Got it. like I've been thinking about that a lot. I mean I thought about this back then, but recently with this whole, which is amazing. It's just hAppening at the same time, but these oj documentaries, particularly espn 30 for 30

Speaker 6: documented everyone. Oh, today it's remarkable that it's happening right now.

Speaker 5: It's almost feel set up because it's at anyway and so much of that documentary isn't really about oj. It's about race and how race was used to pit people against one another. Much like religion where it's like smart people know this is an easy way to get people who are not as informed, not as an educated to be on their side and be angry at the other side and it's just. It's just really sad and I feel like there's a whole idea of is black versus blue and this mentality they're trying to create. I just feel like if the coverage was presented in a different way and if they, if they're, if the interview 20 people, I feel like often the person that you usually, how do they choose to show who they're choosing to show on screen. Just think that they could choose people that weren't saying such ridiculous things or trying to inflame so much and I just, I don't know. There's so few. So there's so many more things that people have in common, especially the people who are here really, really angry and taking to the streets. I mean, if you're poor, you got more in common with another poor person regardless of their race, creed and color than you do with people in power. And the, and the people are empowered just manipulating people on both sides of the aisle. Both, both, both sides of the political scene. People are being, being manipulated by the people in power. And it's just unfortunate.

Speaker 6: A quick answer, it's divide and conquer is, is, uh, is, is what you're talking about. And I guess you already did give us the solution. You know, you gave us a solution which was, you know, work hard and be nice

Speaker 5: on the individual is we need to stop talking about people as groups start, we're dealing with people as individuals and people need to start taking personal responsibility for how they treat other people and how they think about other people and they people if ever, even regardless of how you choose to think about. So if you're just fucking nice to everybody, people be nice to everybody else and that will create a ripple that will turn into a way that, you know, that can change the world. Some hippy dippy stuff. I mean, I don't know. I guess we don't need to smoke more to.

Speaker 6: I love how you're suggestions are smoke more and more sex.

Speaker 5: yeah. Yeah. Well, I mean really that's the answer is love and compassion about the cannabis plant and plant. The way it relaxed you just makes people more compassionate and love is love. I mean, if you're loving on people in these, hard to hate somebody like this is why things like, you know, the most hardcore racists, no matter who they are, they're so and from that group that they hate, that they find attractive that they would treat differently than how they're treating their whole group. I went to a prep school when I was younger and it was one of those. I had those classic conversations from tv that you don't think are real where people are telling you like, like I don't like black people, but I like you. I've actually been. I've been told that so many times. And you're looking at him like, bro, like have you ever watched television?

Speaker 5: And this is a fucking cliche. Like, you know stupid. You're fucking sound. But it's really where they're coming from because people, if they don't, if you don't know anyone, you learn. You learn about people from television and television presents people a certain way. You have a certain assumption about them and then when you meet people that are, that are that way or the way that you can work with this shocking to you, and I was talking with a straight face. I've been told that by kids. I've been told that by adults and they really, really mean. It is like I hate negroes usually mature. Okay. He may just like fucking step out of.

Speaker 6: All right, well, so then if you're listening, go out and meet more people. How about that? Yeah, love on them. That's it. Love is love tyron. Thanks so much man. Appreciate it.

Speaker 5: My pleasure. You have a great day

Speaker 6: and there you have miles buxton

Speaker 2: and of course neil franklin. Incidentally these skip scarborough songbook doesn't feature lovely day performed by bill withers, which skip had a hand in writing, but does feature earth, wind and fire by earth, wind, and fire, which is worth listening to. If you like music, you've goT a good cannabis company in mind. have [inaudible] dot com for those final nominations. Thank you for listening. No matter what.

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Cannabis Economy is a real-time history of legal cannabis. We chronicle how personal and industry histories have combined to provide our current reality.