From an early age children are told, through public service announcements, the DARE program and other outlets, that drugs, especially marijuana, are bad.
However, Temple freshman Mark Stepp believes all the anti-drug propaganda has had no effect on him. Mark is what most people, and the label is well founded, would call a “pothead.”
Yes, Mark smokes massive amounts of weed every week. But what makes him a candidate for the prestigious Pride of North Broad column? He also maintains a high GPA and enrollment in a slew of extracurricular activities.
An International Business major, Mark has been inhaling trees off and on for differing reasons since eighth grade. For him smoking weed is merely a leisurely hobby, like golf or bottle cap collecting.
Mark put it simply; “I just love to get high.” From day one he told himself; if it hurts my grades I’ll stop. The habit has, of course, never affected his grades.
Currently, he maintains a 3.62 GPA, and is a defender on the Temple club hockey team, though he hopes to play forward next year.
He played hockey almost everyday for nine years straight, beginning in the fourth grade and hones his skills to this day.
So why the weed? Mark says it helps him with stress, and makes little things like reading more interesting, surprisingly a tool for focusing, and enriching experiences.
Sure, he drinks a bit- about once or twice a week- no more than an average party going college student, but weed is his number one mind-numbing friend.
Mark smokes more bud than he wouldn like anyone to know a week. I don’t necessarily buy all the weed I smoke.” His roommate added that “potheads” are usually the open and sharing type.
Mark is also content with the accessibility of weed here at Temple, noting that he’s a “pot snob” and it’s “easier to find good weed here,” than in his hometown of Beaver, Pa. Are there many others of his clan here?
He believes about “75 percent of the people I associate myself with smoke weed.”
This is believable because, contrary to what “the man” says, Mark says he remembers everything and even has a special knack for phone numbers.
As any hobbyist does, Mark has a few favorites. His preferred method of inhalation is the bong.
“There is no better way to smoke weed,” he said.
Second, and usually more practical, is a pocket sized glass pipe. While reminiscing about summer days spent in Ocean City, Md. he noted his favorite meal is any all you can eat seafood buffet. He also makes a big point out of the fact that Sublime is his favorite band.
Does THC really have any meaningful effect on one’s body? At the moment it seems the chemical has only had a positive effect on Mark. Though this doesn’t necessarily work for everyone, for five years it has worked for Mark Stepp.
“He is definitely a pothead,” said Mark’s roommate. “Its awesome that he pulls it off.”
Mickey Minnick is a humor columnist for the Temple News. His “Pride of North Broad” column will appear every week online.