How Not to Treat Weed Dealers, According to Weed Dealers
Illustrations by Brandon Celi for VICE.


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How Not to Treat Weed Dealers, According to Weed Dealers

Don't haggle, and don't try to pay with Venmo.

Close to half of all Americans have tried marijuana, and as more accepting attitudes prevail and social mores loosen, the number is growing steadily. For the curious languishing in places where medical or recreational marijuana is still illegal, that means interacting with a weed dealer, which can be a bit awkward, especially before something resembling rapport is established. That need not be the case. Because weed dealers—are you sitting?—are just like any retailer. They want to sell you a product and move on with their day. No fuckery. No weirdness. In. Out. Bing, bang, boom.


We talked to a few Chicago-area weed dealers about their customer pet peeves and the dos and don'ts of buying pot on the DL.


I really hate when people try to bargain. It costs what it costs. If you can't afford it, don't buy it. Cash only. There are a surprising number of people who try to pay me in change. If you have to pull out dimes and quarters to pay me, maybe you shouldn't be buying weed!

It's not like I don't give deals. I hook up my friends, of course, and I give deals for bulk shopping just like Costco. Some people assume they can get customer loyalty discounts after they've bought a certain amount from me. And while I'll definitely do that, it's gotta be on my terms. Don't ask me about it; let me bring it up to you when I decide you've earned it. You don't go to a restaurant and demand to get something for free just because you've been there multiple times. If they have a loyalty program, they'll let you know, and they'll hook you up if they want you to come back.

When it comes to communication, I'm more about clarity than discretion. The way I look at it, this shit is getting legal pretty quickly, and I don't deal in huge quantities. I'd say my customers are more paranoid than I am. Some of them come up with their own code words for shit, and I don't know what the hell they're talking about. People will call an ounce an onion, like "Yo, can I get an onion?" What the fuck is an onion, bro? Just tell me what you want, and I'll hook you up!


Other than that, don't linger after I sell you a sack. I like to have friendly conversation, but let's cap it at two minutes. I'm also not going to smoke you up unless you're my friend, so don't hang out hoping I'm going to offer you free weed after I just sold some to you. Go smoke your own shit. - Sam*, 29


Our service has a lot of rules, and it is based entirely on referrals, which are tightly guarded. Basically, you'll need three people who are already in to vouch for you, and we freeze referrals often due to security issues. If you're lucky enough to become a member, follow the first rule of fight club: Don't fucking talk about fight club. Don't post about us on Reddit, Facebook, Twitter, or any social media sites. Don't give any of our numbers to your friends. You will be blacklisted.

In the same vein, we have your number/address in our database. Don't order from your friend's house, or you will be blacklisted. You'll also be blacklisted for ordering to your address while you're having a party. Don't be dumb.

And don't try and play us on payment. We have three levels of quality, order the lowest if that's all you can afford. Occasionally we'll give you a break on the better stuff if you order the basics and we're out by the time we get to you, but that's rare. Don't try to game the system, or you'll have to go back to asking friends of friends if they know where to get weed. - Josh*, 28


Illustration by Brandon Celi


As a female dealer, people assume I'm more vulnerable, but honestly, the college dudes I sell to really don't scare me. The biggest issues I've had have actually been with women getting really obsessed with me. Seriously! I had this one girl who wanted so desperately to be my friend that she would buy tons of weed from me and also bring me cute vintage jewelry. She was really sweet but got annoying after a while. If I'm not giving off friendship vibes, don't push it.

Speaking of—people ask if they can pick up and pay later so often, it's mind boggling. I never let them do it, unless they're a close friend. They'll keep adding to their "tab" and think they can do it going forward. I know they'll take advantage of me if I let it slide.

Don't call me at weird hours. I sleep at night just like everyone else, and I don't appreciate getting woken up by four missed calls and 16 desperate texts. I've cut people off for doing this. Also, don't constantly check in with me. Sometimes I run out and can't pick up for a few days. If I tell you on Friday that I'm out until Monday night, texting me on Saturday, Sunday, and Monday morning isn't going to change anything. If I'd picked up, I would have told you.

Depending on the drug, I probably do know where to go to get it, but I don't refer customers to my hard drug dealers unless they're my friends and we're going to party together. I don't want to be involved in selling anything other than weed.


Lastly, don't ask me if I've laced my weed with something else. That's offensive. It's probably because I sell to younger kids, but a lot of people accuse me of putting stuff in my weed because it gets them so high. It's just good weed! I'm not sprinkling it with heroin, you're a lightweight. - Lilly*, 21

Do Not

I prefer to be contacted during normal business hours, on both weekends and weekdays. This is my only job at the moment, but I have a life outside of work. You wouldn't want your boss or your clients calling you in the middle of the night on a Tuesday, so don't expect me to pick up when you do that.

Don't ask me if you can pay me with Venmo. You can't. Cash or nothing. Definitely don't place a big order from me and then spring the "Oh, can I pay you in Venmo?" shit on me when I get there. It's a waste of my time, and I'm not going to do you any favors in the future.

Finally, be patient. Drug dealer time is real! I know I have all the power in our transaction. I might say I'll be there in 20 minutes, but I know I can take as long as I want when I'm the guy with the weed. Don't expect me to be on time, and don't flood me with ETA texts. I'll get there when I get there. - Antonio*, 26

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