We Watched 4000 People Getting Stoned in a Melbourne Park

The city's stoners descended on Flagstaff Gardens yesterday to celebrate pot culture. We mostly went to ask some questions.

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Apr 21 2015, 3:29am

4/20 Day, as you probably already know, celebrates the twentieth day of the fourth month, but more importantly, it celebrates stoner culture everywhere. Allegedly the tradition began near San Francisco in the early 1970s where a group of friends met at San Rafael High School every day at 4:20pm to get high. The expression spread and today April 20 is the international day for marijuana protest.

Yesterday, stoners met up all over the country to show support for marijuana legalisation. You can read a story from Sydney here, while in Melbourne 4000 stoners descended on Flagstaff Gardens. The congregation began at 3pm and lasted well into the night as people sat in groups, filling the air with haze and amateur guitar work. Police presence was light at best and the officers around seemed happy to ignore the collective blazing of the people. We went down to take a look.

Seth, 25

Hey Seth, so why should Australia legalise marijuana?
Harm reduction, and I mean that in the sense of lifestyle choice. It has benefits so let's use them.

What's your favourite stoner movie?
Samsara by far. That movie has such good visuals.

What do you like about being stoned?
I can appreciate things more. The sensory amplification: for taste, cooking, and especially music.

What's your favourite thing to cook while stoned?
A six-hour bolognese hands down. Pork and bacon. Get some wine and reduce that baby for hours.

You'll have to send me the recipe. But let's say pot gets legalised, what else will still be lacking from your life?
If pot was legal then it's all I'd need. I'm a simple guy.

Seb, 20

Why should Australia legalise marijuana?
It would bring in a lot of money for the government so it's a good reason for them to try and accept the idea. And let's be honest, there's just nothing really wrong with it.

Nothing wrong with it? What happened to your arm?
Yeah, today on this fine 4/20, I had uni then went for a skate and broke my wrist. I thought it was the worst day of my life. But not really because it's 4/20 so I've come here to the rally at Flagstaff gardens and now I'm getting my medicine.

You consider marijuana to be medical?
Absolutely medical. It's definitely numbing my broken wrist.

What's your favourite stoner movie?
I do love Seth and James and I do love Pineapple Express. It's a classic.

What do you like about being stoned?
It's just the feeling of accepting everything and taking everything in and feeling at one with everything. You just feel completely at the same level with everything else in this universe. So it's kind of like a unifying feeling that I get from it. And plus it just feels cool.

Emily, 17

Hey Emily, why should Australia legalise marijuana?
Emily: Because it's a natural plant. Also it makes everyone feel good and relaxed.

What do you like about being stoned?
It's just so relaxing and it makes music and movies more entertaining and fun.

What's your favourite stoner movie?
Pineapple Express. It's hilarious when you're stoned.

What else will be lacking in your life once pot is legalised?
Legalising it will make everyone's life easier so not much really. I guess you could just walk down the street and have a joint rather than hiding it. I don't think it harms anyone really.

If you had to pick one advocate for marijuana legalisation to meet with Tony Abbott, who would it be?
My mum. I think she's very good at convincing people and she's very strong-minded. I think she could definitely convince him.

Jamie, 21

Hey Jamie, why should Australia legalise marijuana?
Because it's peaceful. It's from the earth and it brings everyone together.

What else would be lacking from your life once pot is legalised?
Nothing. My life would have less drama, less stress.

What's your favourite stoner movie?
Pineapple Express. Two words — cross-joints.

What do you like about being stoned?
The creative feeling. It really increases my creativity.

Oh and I'm going to need your age for the article.
I'm 420... shit, I mean I'm 21.

Jack, 18

Hey Jack, what's your favourite stoner movie?
Cheech and Chong is always good. And Half Baked. That was funny as fuck.

What do you like about being stoned?
Just kicking back, relaxing and having a good time, being with some friends and having a mix.

What else will be lacking in your life once pot is legalised?
Not much, though in all honesty I don't think it matters that much. It's already so easy to get but it will be cheaper and I guess it will make everyone's life easier. I don't think it will affect anyone's life in a negative way if it's legalised.

Billy the Goat

Hey Jake, is this your goat?
Yeah, his name is Billy.

How'd you and Billy meet?
I was online and bought him on Gumtree from a pair of hunters.

How did you get him here?
Just in the back of our Astra. He lives in the western suburbs. He's an inside goat.

So he's not an ordinary goat?
Definitely not, he's a party goat and he comes with us everywhere. He loves joints, he loves kids, and everyone loves him. He's a sick goat. He's even got his own Facebook page.

Do you think you saved his life by buying him?
Yeah, he was going to get shot if he wasn't sold. We bought him from goat hunters. He was about three months old at the time. They had already shot his mother unfortunately.

Why is Billy here at 4/20?
Billy is the 4/20 goat. He's the mascot and he loves weed. He steals my weed all the time, he's always eating it. He'll come and steal the joint from your hand if you're not careful.

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