By John Schlicher, Senior Copywriter

Over the holidays, I asked my wife’s 67-year-old uncle (who resides in Boulder, Colorado and was in town visiting family) what’s been the most noticeable differences he’s seen since the legalization of marijuana in the state. “First, it’s really strange to see something that for my entire lifetime was illegal and criminal now be so out in the open, be part of everyday life,” he began. “Secondly, my kids come to see me (from out of state) a lot more than they used to,” he deadpanned.

For those of us who live in states where weed is still an illegal substance it is indeed a bit difficult to fathom the alternate reality that exists in the states where marijuana is a legal commodity that can be easily purchased and consumed no different than a case of beer or a pack of cigarettes. This point really hit home for me recently when I read an article online on about an advertising agency in Boulder that created three new strains of marijuana designed to get agency creatives, strategists, and technologists “in the groove and doing better work.”

The ad pot was made as part of a promotional campaign for The Fifty, which is the Denver Ad Club’s award show, showcasing the market’s 50 best ideas of the year. “The Fifty Weed,” as the drug is being called, was made in partnership with Colorado Kind, a marijuana grower and award show sponsor.

Creating weed as a promotional item? Really? That’s only about 1,000,000x more interesting than giving out…say a pen. Or a coffee mug. Or a stress ball. Like I said, definitely an alternate reality.

According to the advertising professionals interviewed for the article, marijuana apparently is as commonly consumed by Colorado ad agency personnel as coffee. Which led me to wonder — just what is the quality of work they’re cranking out in Colorado?! For some reason I envision ads that all look like Grateful Dead concert posters with copy that either rambles on aimlessly or just trails off with no conclusion. I also picture offices that are decked out with Jimi Hendrix posters and black lights. And kitchens stocked full of Twinkies. But it’s not fair for me to stereotype.

Anyway, in case you’re interested and will be in Colorado in the next few days, “The Fifty Weed” will be available everywhere Colorado Kind Cannabis is sold. And until marijuana is legalized here in New Jersey, it looks like pens, coffee mugs, and stress balls will just have to do.