MAN IN THE WORLD
I Beat the Gong
Has Legalization Helped
or Hurt Mainers?
Seeks to PauSe
Mike “Cann” Crawford
Growing for the Government:
Has Legalization Helped or Hurt
by Lauren Moore
by Kaitlyn Buckley
Malden City Council Seeks
to Pause Cannabis Retail
by Mike Crawford
The Real Life "Most Interesting
Man in the World"
by Jarrett Ashley
Questions for Co-Found of Award
Winning, Mary Palmer
by Mike Crawford
by John Labo
Rob Potylo, I Beat the Gong
by Mike Crawford
Cover Image Submitted by Rick Naya.
Pictured: Cannabis Bred & Grown by Rick.
2017 STASH Awards
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GROWING FOR THE GOVERNMENT:
Has legalization helped or hurt Mainers?
Over the past decade, we guessed and
gabbed about what commercially legalized
cannabis would look like in our everyday life.
And today in 2021, it's here. It's not so much
about the Marlboro joints and bulk grocery
containers we imagined. But it's not that different
If you're a medical marijuana patient in Maine,
you've been legally allowed to grow your own
weed since 1999. Granted, I'm sure it wasn't
as easy as scheduling a 15 minute Zoom
meeting, complaining about sleeping problems,
and having a patient ID number emailed
to you for $50 like I did last year. But in my
past decade of living on the Maine coast, cannabis
has always been abundant, high quality,
and easier and easier to get.
In 2013, the city of Portland legalized possession
of up to 2.5 ounces. In 2014, the city
of South Portland voted to legalize cannabis
recreationally. In 2016, Maine voted to pass
the Marijuana Legalization Act, permitting
adults 21+ to grow up to 3 mature plants, 6
immature, & unlimited seedlings. The medical
tax on sales stayed at 5.5%, while commercial
sales tax was set for 10%.
When I first moved to Maine in 2011, it was
actually BECAUSE they had some of the best
caregiver laws for growers in the nation.
While you were still supposed to pay taxes on
every sale, you could have up to 5 patients
with 6 flowering plants for each, and manage
your own business with basic reporting to
the state. Medical dispensaries were limited
to something like 1 for every 3 counties and
there were only 8 in the state. But as of 2020,
the latest recreational ruleset permits 2 dispensaries
per town, putting commercial use
within the same zip code as every Mainer.
Today, cannabis has officially surpassed
blueberries as Maine's most lucrative crop,
by Lauren Loiacono
cashing in at $221.8 million. While this figure
includes sales from both dispensaries and
licensed caregivers, revenue has more than
doubled since dispensary locations have expanded
and opened in October 2020. According
to the Maine Office of Marijuana Policy,
medical marijuana sales totaled $109.2 million
in 2019, when caregivers made up 76% of
revenue. On October 9th, recreational stores
opened in Maine and earned $94,000 in one
day. After the first month, they generated $1.4
million in sales.
I was actually one of many in the Maine cannabis
industry that voted no on Question 2 to
legalize recreational use in Maine. Like I said,
I genuinely believed we had the best caregiver
legislation in the country. Legalizing and
commercializing weed would take away from
small farmers. And while caregivers are still
able to operate as they were, the market continues
"I still have the amount of patients I need to
keep my operation legal, but sales are definitely
lighter," a small town caregiver says.
"The people who buy regular weight every
month stay consistent. But patients buying
smaller amounts here and there obviously
want to check out the market and spread their
money out. So I love all my patients, but might
have to shift my client base around or start
selling to the yuppie stores."
The dispensaries often grow their own product
and outsource from local growers and
commercial farms as well. While the competitive
market on one hand opens new outlets
for entrepreneurial growers, we're also adjusting
the cost for more middle men. When
I pay my caregiver directly for cannabis, she
pays the tax on it. When I buy it from a store,
we both do, and now so does the distributor.
Since I do not like what Maine's governor
does with our taxes, I personally try to keep
as much of my money from going back to the
state as possible. While the margin of victory
was razor thin, the push to vote "No on 1" in
2016 was not because Mainers didn't want
cannabis in our communities. It was to protect
“There is very little in the proposed bill that
would improve the state’s laws, and much
more that threatens the functionality of
Maine’s homegrown laws,” the No on 1 campaign
One beacon that appeared to shine for small
farmers in Maine was the expansion of the
hemp industry, which appeared to be a lowcost,
easy-to-grow, marketable opportunity
with the spike in demand for CBD products.
But the market flooded, which of course
means the supply became saturated while
demand steadily decreased. Maine's rapid
growth in industrial hemp over the past 4
years has all but crashed. Hemp farmers in
Maine both new and experienced have found
themselves with hundreds of pounds of excess
product and millions of dollars in debt.
Even commercial farms that positioned
themselves to corner the market are going
bankrupt. Since industrial hemp growing
was legalized with the 2018 Farm Bill, Americans
have more than doubled the supply of
the product. And with this increase comes
a decrease in value – the cost for CBD has
dropped roughly 80%. The national market
and distribution policies have to change if
there is any hope for small farmers like those
in Maine to have economic success with industrial
This is a burn in particular for growers that
have aligned with a free medicine movement
in the state. A small network of growers and
caregivers have affirmed that sick patients
(with cancer for example, not an acute condition)
don't pay. A caregiver shared that he had
a 99% success rate in helping patients combat
cancer with Rick Simpson oil, as the few
deaths he witnessed occurred in cases of too
much radiation and cannabis treatment coming
too late. But after fruitless investment into
hemp, he is unable to provide as much free
product as he was a few years ago.
"Multibillion dollar industry they said," he
Bred by GreenMan Organics
Grown by John Labo
explained about industrial hemp. "Everyone
racing to get the strongest stake hold. Thousands
of dollars in applications and permits.
It was supposed to be the easiest crop to
grow and sell, and now what? We still have
product from last year and haven't even harvested
what we grew for 2020. It was an investment
that all signs pointed to pulling us
way ahead but tanked in every way. Money,
land, time, resources. Damn shame."
What's also a shame is that the only market
for non-psychoactive hemp is CBD products.
Every cannabis user knows how sustainable
a hemp-based economy would be, as George
Washington knew as well. It would be the rise
of the farmers and self-sufficiency. With the
endless uses hemp can provide, why are we
letting the government dictate its market?
While registered dispensaries funnel millions
of dollars to the state, another restaurant in
my town just closed. Small businesses and
farms are folding. All the while, our tax dollars
continue funding a system that does not
Cannabis and hemp are special products because
they remind us that we have everything
we need to be sufficient. We can grow our
medicine. We can grow our own paper, clothing,
rope, building material. We can grow our
own food. We can grow our own economy.
Because remember the cannabis industry before
legalization? We already had one.
WHAT ARE YOUR THOUGHTS & SOLUTIONS FOR
GROWERS & GOV'T WHEN IT COMES TO CAN-
NABIS & HEMP? Let's talk.
Contact details below.
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By Mike Crawford
Malden City Council Seeks to Pause
Cannabis Retail Licensing
City Councilor Craig Spadafora, an alcohol Retailer is not a fan of cannabis retail?
“I want them to live in Malden, I want them to
eat in Malden and I want them to drink in Malden.”
City Councilor Craig Spadafora, 10/10/19,
Malden City Council debate.
The Malden, Massachusetts City Council recently
passed a non-binding Resolve, “that the
city of Malden cannabis license commission
pause on soliciting additional applications for
retail marijuana licenses so that the city can solicit
voter feedback at the next municipal election
on limits on the number of establishments
allowed in the city” by a vote of 6-5.
State law passed after a 2016 legalization initiative
requires cities or towns that voted a majority
in support of the ballot question to license
a set number of cannabis licenses. In the city
of Malden, it would mean five or more adult use
cannabis applicants being licensed. The city is
only legally able to ban, to opt-out of cannabis
licensing by passing a new ballot initiative.
Currently, Malden has selected two adult-use
applicants to proceed with licensing.
The sponsor of the Resolve, City Councilor
Craig Spadafora doubted voters that elected
him, “A lot of voters didn’t realize there was a
number, they didn’t, whether you want to call
them uneducated voters that’s fine, they didn't
understand there was a number tied to the number
of alcohol licenses determined by the state by
City Councilor Amanda Linehan noted why she
was against the Resolve and seemed to take
issue with Spadafora on voter intent, “I voted in
favor of cannabis as a resident when it was on
the ballot and sincerely believe it sets a bad precedent
to assume that voters didn’t understand
how that ratio would be set or what it was that
they were voting on.”
Linehan also directly addressed those who would
be harmed by more delays, “I don't think it’s fair
to those that are midway through the process
right now to take this step.”
Spadafora seems intent in pushing for a ballot
initiative that would allow voters to limit the number
of retail cannabis licenses. This is interesting
considering he appears to retail liquor at his family’s
Malden restaurant business.
A 2017 study “Helping Settle the Marijuana and
Alcohol Debate: Evidence from Scanner Data”
showed a sizable decrease in liquor sales following
cannabis legalization with alcohol sales down
by as much as 16.2 percent.
Spadafora ran on a platform of transparency but
offered no response when I reached out via email
to address the conflict of interest and hypocrisy of
stalling cannabis retail while he appears to retail
a far more harmful product.
A call to Spadafora’s listed phone number on the
Malden City Council shows it is not in service.
Finding that a Craig Spadafora had a publicly
listed email on the restaurant’s website, I decided
to pose as a potential customer looking to book a
big bash to see if he would retail liquor to me.
He responded quickly to that email offering, “a
beverage setup fee of $100.00 to have a cash
bar available (applied for alcohol or soda sales).”
Getting back on official city business, not that important,
selling a cash bar, City Councilor Spadafora
will get right back to you.
At the hearing thirteen Malden citizens offered
spoken and written testimony against the Resolve.
No Malden citizens spoke in support of
Speaking at the hearing, Jenelle DeVits, a member
of the Malden Cannabis Licensing Enforcement
Commission (CLEC), “Let’s be clear, the
resolution before you tonight is asking the CLEC
to violate our city ordinance and to shut down
our process down altogether, because this body
or the anti-marijuana residents failed to organize
appropriately over the last three-plus years to put
a question on the ballot, regarding restrictions on
the number of licenses as required by state law. If
there was really such a concern and motivation to
elicit feedback from our residents why did the city
council or these concerned residents fail to put
the question before the largest turnout of Malden
voters on this year’s Presidential ballot or even
last year’s mayoral ballot, I hope you all take a
pause and ask why now, three years later there is
a push to wait for an off-year election when we all
know turnout will be much lower and not representative
of the voters citywide. If the city council
wants to properly change our ordinance there is
a legal process to do that, which does not involve
a non-binding resolution directing the CLEC to
violate the city’s current ordinance.”
Kimberly Gillette, another Malden resident with
oral testimony, “This resolve would at best support
the closure of our process or at worst protect
a monopoly for the only two businesses that
made it through the first phase of applications.”
DeVits concluded, “Trying to direct the CLEC to
violate the current ordinance is not appropriate
and only raises questions of whether pausing at
this junction will be a violation of state law, such
a pause may be argued by some to be a de facto
ban on additional licenses or may be seen as
limiting the number of licenses below five which
we know can only be approved by a majority of
Malden residents through a ballot question while
residents had a full three years to get this question
on the ballot, that has not happened.”
Warren Lynch, a cannabis applicant in the city is
hopeful despite the results of the vote, “I spoke
with two City Councilors who voted yes on the
Resolve, and they both said that they do not
agree that cannabis licenses should be delayed
a full 12 months, and only voted yes on what
they viewed as the main point of the non-binding
Resolve, which is that the cannabis licensing
process in Malden could use some clarification in
a few places."
DeVits also isn’t giving up, "I plan to urge the
CLEC to keep moving forward with a monthly rolling
basis application process per our current City
ordinance that remains unchanged, even in light
of the split vote on the non-binding resolution."
by Jarrett Ashley
The Real Life "Most Interesting Man In The World"
What do you get when you cross Spanish royalty,
the "summer of '69", drug runners, state government,
and lots and lots of cannabis? No, it's
not the plot of the next Seth Rogan film. Ok, well,
it could be... but it isn't. When you break it down
and roll it all up, you get one hell of a story to puff
on. The name of the story? Rick F#$&ing Naya -
The "great grandfather of hybrid cannabis". Rick
is like one of those astronomical events that only
come around once every 200 years. There are a
lot of amazing people fighting this fight but few of
them have the background or the credentials that
Rick has carried with him since birth. You see, he
was born into the aristocracy. Not something like
it or symbolic but true "blue blood", run-the-world
type of privilege. You'd never know it if Rick didn't
tell you. For every bit of confidence and charisma
that pours out of him (and it's a lot), there is an
equal amount of humility and service. In fact, if
you even remotely understand the implications of
the fight for cannabis legalization or for the betterment
of humanity in general, then by the time
you've listened to Rick for 10 minutes you want to
shake his hand and thank him for everything he's
done. At least I did.
Cannabis Grown &
Bred by Rick
Rick was born in the US, on the 4th of July no
less, into a family of very wealthy and affluential
politicians who in turn were descendants of Spanish
Royalty that had settled in Cuba in the 1580’s.
In their prime, the family commanded the largest
fleet of steam ships in the eastern hemisphere.
No joke -- he is a bonafide prince with a family
castle in Spain and everything! The family were
eventually exiled from Cuba, relocating to the US
by way of Florida. This is where Rick's journey
begins. Despite his privileged upbringing, and
maybe even because of it to some degree, Rick
was exposed to and self-educated on cannabis at
a very early age. It was the summer of '69 when
he tried his first joint and it was unfortunately an
anticlimactic experience. However, it started him
on a path of curiosity that never ended. Here was
a plant that was thoroughly demonized by society
that he himself had tried, as well as many others
he knew of who were not harmed by it in any
way. In fact, some of them were helped by it! Rick
had the opportunity afforded him to dedicate time
and energy to
and learn he
did. Even as a
kid he started
to write letters
Herer and Ed
knowledge on the subject grew exponentially until
he was one of the most knowledgeable kids on
the planet when it came to cannabis. The more
he learned, the more he understood the racist
and vile reasons behind the prohibition of cannabis
in the first place. He learned how the word
"marijuana" had been intentionally weaponized
and twisted by racists into the new name for what
had been called cannabis for centuries before.
He learned how Harry Anslinger almost single
handedly turned the world against this amazing
plant using fear mongering and racist rhetoric. He
learned how the likes of DuPont and Rockefeller
were turning oil into medicine - and practically
everything else - who viewed cannabis as cheap,
effective competition. The more he learned, the
more he began to transform from affluent heir to
black sheep. Then one day in the woods at age
13, his future would quite literally fall out of the
sky and change his course forever.
A drug smuggling plane dropped its load over the
woods Rick happened to be wandering through.
After the smugglers gathered up their prize and
cleared the area, Rick found the spot where bails
of cannabis were dropped only minutes earlier.
Not only that, but he found a few broken bails
that the smugglers had left behind. Over time he
began to use it, sell it, then grow it and eventually
- he started to breed it. He had to keep his activity
low key, not only because of the draconian
laws of the time but also because of his family's
prominence. So, he remained under the radar
-- but he was hooked. He became somewhat of
a recluse as he obsessed over and hunted down
the rarest landrace strains he could find. He was
creating some of the best bud in the area and
getting recognized for it quickly. Unlike other
growers he knew, Rick tended to everything from
the bioavailability of the soil to the electro-magnetic
resonance shared between plant and grower.
He knew that he was raising champs and it
wasn't long before the cannabis world acknowledged
it and embraced him fully as one of their
own. It was still the early days of genome testing
and the pioneers of this new science wanted to
backtrack genetics to catalogue the lineage of
the most popular strains. When testing was done
on the genetic profile of two of the better-known
strains, Skunk and Northern Lights, both were
found to be the progeny of a strain called "Gainsville
Green". You guessed it! Rick Naya was the
breeder and grower of Gainsville Green and as
such is recognized as paving the way for many
of the top shelf genetics that followed. This was
formally acknowledged when Sensi magazine
dubbed him "The Great Grandfather of Hybrid
Cannabis". Despite his efforts to remain out of
the spotlight, Rick Naya was a rising cannabis
star. So, he did what any well-educated cannabis
connoisseur and activist would do. He ran with
Now at this point I could get into all the various
titles he's held and organizations he's run. I
could write the rest of the article just on that topic
alone. His upbringing and privilege were never
totally shunned, only redirected. The aristocracy
had shaped him into a multi-state, billion-dollar
operator. Rick was not timid about running huge
projects and had the education and professional
experience to back it up. He eventually found
himself in New Hampshire, with a respected
reputation and a solid mission in the cannabis
world and so he got involved. Really involved!
As an independent activist in the cannabis arena
representing the people in the state, he found
himself in roles such as director of New Hampshire
Cannabis Freedom Festival, Director of
New Hampshire Cannabis company, director of
New Hampshire Farmers Cannabis Collective,
Director of "A Newer New Hampshire" and Executive
director of New Hampshire NORML just to
name a few. There are more. Much more! But all
of these are things Rick has done - not who he is.
Who he is, is a down to earth, father-of-four, man
of the people. He's well educated, well versed
and directly experienced having used cannabis
to win his own fight with cancer. He is using
everything at his disposal to make the world a
better place. Yes, the world! If you ask Rick, he'd
tell you the "cannabis arena" is really the arena
of life. Just as with anything else, change comes
through the bravery of those who have the courage
to be educated and to teach others, to lead
by example and take on the lies of history and to
make a brighter world for everyone. Ask him what
he wants to be remembered for and he doesn't
hesitate: "spreading love". That's who Rick Naya
is. That's why he almost seems to glow when you
see or speak to him. Passion pours out of him in
such a way that it becomes impossible to dismiss
him as a fluke or a gimmick. Rick Naya is the real
deal and make no mistake, he is on more of a
spiritual mission than a political one.
Rick is deeply spiritual. He will tell you so directly
but he really doesn't have to. You can gather as
much just from listening to him talk about cannabis
and what it means to him to make it accessible
for all. He says that God called his soul
to be a gladiator for cannabis. He believes the
world will be a better place when we as a species
realize and live what Rick calls "the 4 principles".
These 4 principles create the foundation for
everything that Rick does and it's no coincidence
that these 4 principles tend to make their way into
the priorities of anyone with a healthy respect and
affinity for cannabis. The principles are Health,
Wellness, Love & Compassion. Rick's own kids
went through periods of resentment and feeling
abandoned by his dedication to his cause but
later acknowledged the profound love that was at
the core of his being, driving everything he does.
While they have not explicitly joined him in his
mission, they understand it and support him. It's
hard not to when you realize that everything he
has worked for and accomplished has been built
on dignity and truth as the cornerstones. While
he may not have always been able to be home -
he was always operating from a place of love and
there is no denying that.
(or are at least looking for) the truth. He sees how
a money hungry industry continues to push for
growth of profits at the expense of the 4 principles.
Ever the self-styled superhero though, Rick
continues to push back. Whether or not you've
heard of him, there's no mistake that he is among
the few individuals who's sweat, blood and tears
got us to where we are today in this battle and
that's no small feat. He truly is bringing the cannabis
community together and has been for years
in ways that give new meaning and direction to
the culture he has proudly been a part of since
childhood. When I asked him what the most
positive shift in the culture has been, his answer
surprised me. He pointed to the dynamics directly
following George Floyd’s public murder at the
hands of the police. I didn't fully understand what
he meant until he pointed out that now "systemic
racism" was a household term. Now more than
ever we can address that issue which also lies
at the heart of cannabis prohibition and the continued
harassment and imprisonment of minorities
to this day. Only when this issue is properly
addressed can we ever hope to bring cannabis
fully out of shadows and bring humanity one step
closer to the light. The other major shift following
that horrific 9-minute video was the amount of
people who are ready to be activists. Not just for
cannabis or law reform, but for justice and lasting
systemic reform that has been so desperately
Today, Rick is extremely concerned with the
"cultural wedge" born of disconnect and control
that continues to create a gap between those
who have been lied to and those who have seen
Rick, underneath a Fluorescent Light Fixture.
needed in this country. Cannabis legalization isn't the only way that's achieved, but it is a giant leap
in the right direction.
Now Rick is preparing to launch his latest project, RickNaya.cool, which is an online platform that will
include his current project "The Rick Naya Show" as well as provide a platform to cannabis superstars
such as Wutang and to up-and-coming activists and canna-businesses that meet the standards set
by the love-sharing trail blazer himself. He is also gearing up to take on the big money players in the
industry by laying legal claim to the massively popular strains that contain his original genetics and
making anyone who wants to sell them come through him first. He is also an honorary judge at almost
all of the major events like Terptown Throwdown, Hightimes Cup, and more. As such, he has a direct
hand in guiding and cultivating both the genetics and the growers of the next few decades. With the
right support and help from the world, Rick Naya is set to lead the cannabis industry down the path it
should be going rather than leave it in the hands of the same few big money interests and aristocrats
that have sought to control things for a very, very long time. The same aristicrats that Rick came from
and eventually shied away from in order to bring love, light and cannabis to the world. In the words of
the man himself... “Groovy Shit!"
I couldn’t have said it better myself.
Smoke Up & Shine On
- Jarrett Ashley
By Mike Crawford
DJ STENNY: QUESTIONS FOR CO-FOUND OF
AWARD-WINNING, MARY PALMER
“Like any business, an entrepreneur must know all parts of the business.”
Do you go by DJ Stenny? How did you get that name?
My whole life growing up in Quincy, I’ve been called
Stenny. My father had gotten the nickname while serving
in the Navy, the members of his crew would shorten
his last name from Stentiford to Stenny. After I got out
of the Marines, I started to DJ in the Boston area and it
was an easy choice to brand and market the nickname
I already had.
When and why did you start Mary Palmer?
My girlfriend Lynne Spinney and I started Mary Palmer
in the fall of 2018. We wanted to create a beverage to
help people. We made a THC-infused beverage to compete
at the inaugural Commonwealth Cannabis Cup
held at the Boston Freedom Rally. About two months
later, we entered the Harvest Cup competition and won
first place for sweet edible.
few products that we weren’t too sure about how the
judges would perceive. We entered medicated stuffed
pepper and infused pickle in the “savory” category and
both did really well, with pepper in second place and
pickle taking first place.
What are your best-selling products?
The CBD tinctures, our Best Buds dog treats, and the
CBD gum. Research has shown that pets have an endocannabinoid
system (ECS), just like humans do. This
means that the endocannabinoid receptors in the body
are able to interact with CBD and use it to promote an
What are you working on next?
Finishing the CCC’s economic empowerment program
and getting a community host agreement.
How and where do you create your Mary Palmer products
and source the CBD?
Most of our products are formulated in our kitchen
by us. We have a local production partner for a few
products we don’t have the equipment for. Our CBD is
sourced both locally and nationally.
At the Harvest Cup 2020, you took home six first-place
wins and four runner-ups, ten awards total. Tell us
about some of those awards, any that you are most
This was a unique year, and with no events going on
we focused on the contest. There were definitely a
Where do you see yourself in the future?
In the Massachusetts recreational retail market.
If you could get elected city/town and statehouse officials
to take action what would you ask them to do?
Get the ball rolling on recreational cannabis in Quincy,
change the designated green zones.
Any advice for budding local cannabis entrepreneurs?
Start growing, get involved in your local community,
start networking, and find like-minded individuals. Like
any business, an entrepreneur must know all parts of
Mike Crawford is a Massachusetts medical cannabis patient and founder of The Young Jurks and midnightmass.substack.com. You can listen to The Young Jurks on
iTunes or wherever else podcasts are streamed. This article was produced with support from Midnight Mass and The Young Jurks, where your contributions are greatly
appreciated and help us deliver more local coverage.
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Recently I had the pleasure of trying out a
couple products by the company, Farmers
Armour. The timing could not have been more
perfect, because my outdoor garden was in
full flower, coming up to harvest. Anyone who
has ever grown cannabis knows that the resin
produced by the plant is extremely sticky,
hard to remove, and at times irritating to the
skin. Farmers Armour protective Sleeves are
the perfect product to help with all three of
those inconveniences. They can be used for
any type of gardener, but work especially well
for the Cannabis Farmer or Harvester. Made of
a polyester blend that protects against overheating
and has a Sun and UV ray protection,
UPF 50+. The sleeves (as pictured) I used
were the Black Farmer Sleeves. Other options
include: Forest Green with the Farmer Armour
Logo, Navy Blue with Logo, Maroon with
Logo, Leaf-Camo, Black Camo, White Camo,
Green Camo, Pink Camo, Sea-Weed (Art Collection),
Flamingo (Art Collection), & Loc Fish
(Art Collection). Some key take away positive
points of these sleeves are:
For more information on this product, and to purchase visit:
Loc Fish Farmer Armour Straw Hat
1. Keeps Arms Clean
1. Stick Free
2. No Itchy Arms
2. Don’t Have to Keep Changing your Shirt
3.. Keeps you both Cool & Warm
4. No Slip Band
5. Fitted Hand Coverage
I also was able to try out Farmers Armour’s Straw Hat
with the Loc Fish inner design. The inner designs of
this one (pictured) and several of their other Straw Hats
are a collaboration with Artist and muralist Taylor Reinhold
of Santa Cruz, CA. It has a comfortable, universal
fit, with straps that adjust to tighten around the chin.
The Straw Hat provides full coverage from the sun and
Protective Hand & Arm Coverage
optimal shade. For cannabis specifically, it helps with
added protection from resin and branches. The Design
is stylish and unique, great for gardening or any outdoor activity. Other design options include:
Green Camo Print, Black Camo Print, Sea-Weed and Flamingo.
Along with Sleeves & Straw Hats, Farmer Armour also makes, art collection Neck Gaiters,
Beverage Necklace Koozies, Farm & Trim Aprons, Beanies & Caps, Face Masks, T Shirts
This product is part of
Therefore, it is
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OUTDOOR CLEAN GREEN CERTIFIED ORGANIC
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By Mike Crawford
Rob Potylo, I Beat the Gong
Potylo is expected to be featured in a highly anticipated documentary on
his friend, the WWE hall of fame wrestler, Chyna, who sadly passed in 2016
Rob Potylo, grew up in the Massachusetts town of Danvers, is an actor, film producer, and a musical comedian.
Potylo is expected to be featured in the production of a highly anticipated documentary feature on his friend,
the WWE hall of fame wrestler, Chyna, who sadly passed in 2016.
Something I had the chance to ask him about. He’s tight-lipped on the details of that project.
From wikipedia, Potylo “has produced and appeared
in five seasons of Quiet Desperation,
a scripted online mockumentary comedy web
show and cable series about the underground art
and music scene.” and “appeared on Season 1,
Episode 4 of The Gong Show to perform his song
"Hot Dogs And Applesauce," and encored with
"Shaving Cream" by Benny Belle.”
Potylo who currently lives in Pasadena, California
has also appeared on the Ellen show and is often
most recognized as his alter-ego, Robby Roadsteamer.
I’ve known Potylo for nearly 20 years and had the
pleasure to interview him about it all via email.
One of your most viewed videos has over 7
million views on youtube, singing to a NY police
officer, you made a connection, has she seen the
Singing to cops and finding a connection is a
wonderful way to de-escalate protest situations
before anyone really gets hurt. I've seen Vermin
Supreme do this technique a lot! You see it in the
eyes of cops and protesters alike that we're human,
in this together, and we can all use a smile.
Love, comedy, and connection will always prevail!
The NYPD lady cop's brother reached out to me,
and said she thought it was hilarious!
Why did you decide to start singing to the police
and the National Guard? Have you been
surprised by their reactions?
At various protests with Vermin Supreme and I
just felt using my songs, the personality I developed
at comedy clubs and music venues around
Boston was a great way to de-escalate the crazy
situations at marches. Stop agro cops or protesters
from getting more aggressive in already
I wasn't surprised that the troops or cops like the
tunes, because I wanna make them smile. An
entertainer gives. Performance art stops arrests,
pepper sprayings, and beatings, and the cops
get to hear nice songs about “Hot Dogs & Applesauce”!
Children songs for adults!
Have you received any backlash about those
videos from people who aren’t necessarily
fans of police?
Yeah. I don't know what to say. There's good and
bad on both sides, and it helps to see that. Only a
Sith deals in absolutes.
Vermin Supreme, how did you meet and decide
to start doing videos and protests with
Vermin Supreme showed up to a shoot that I did
for Quiet Desperation. We had an open casting
call for hippies on a fake commune and surprise!
We hit it off that day, and when he saw that I tried
to kill myself on the next episode, he invited me
to his compound in Gloucester to bond for a day!
During which I jumped from 40 foot cliffs into a
quarry dressed as a penguin! And he invited me
to the DNC in North Carolina. Rest is history!
Vermin is always running for President, who
are you voting for?
Biden. I'm a Bernie, AOC bro, but we gotta get
Hitler Hellboy out of the Whitehouse so these
trolling MAGA's can get back to 4chan porn and
Beanie Baby swap meets.
What do you say to Trump supporters or your
friend, Ernie Boch, Jr?
It's a death cult, and the shit you're willing to
ignore cause you're getting more of your taxes
back speaks volumes. To Ernie tho? I'd say,
“Thank You for being a friend, travel down the
road and back again.”
Craziest Robby Roadsteamer show?
Played a show to a bunch of upper crust Karens
at an outdoor gig in Manchester By The Sea, a
benefit at this country club looking venue. The
kids in the back loved it, but these rich privileged
parents who had long ago settled for wrought-iron
gate houses were giving me the stink-eye. So I
told the kids "Your parents have long ago sold out
and fucking suck, they are afraid of you, because
you're the future!" A chef grabbed a knife, a waiter
called the cops, and I left through the back for
another gig in Worcester, while the cops came
through the front. There was even a listing, the
police report in the Gloucester paper about it.
Was there a breaking point when you knew
that you were killing Roadsteamer and coming
back with Potylo?
Took shrooms for the first time right before my
30th (birthday), and just went through this revelation
that I could still be me creatively, and as a
I was always guarded, and paranoid to be me,
because of relentless bullying at home, and in the
Danvers public school systems. Mostly by entitled
jocks that hated outsider creative types. I realized
on mushrooms that I was okay underneath, but
had a lot of evolving to do.
Nonetheless I started destroying the Roadsteamer
character live. Started saying stuff I myself
would say onstage through Robby "I'm just like
you guys, I love Elliott Smith, and Nintendo's Zelda,
and The Dresden Dolls!!" It was the beginning
of the end of my Roadsteamer audience!
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Today it seems logically the right move but at first not everybody was supportive?
They still don't like Rob Potylo as a performer in Boston. I come back to Cambridge, and play the Mid East
downstairs, with the Roadsteamer band, and bring 500 massholes. I do Rob Potylo, and get 30, with 10 asking
if, "I'll do any Roadsteamer songs?"
Haven't done a show in New England in four years now. It's a lot of games just to express who I am to a culture
that never gave many fucks about an outsider artist to begin with unless I scream, "I put a baby in you!!!"
Did you ever doubt your decision?
No regrets ever. Roadsteamer is fabulous to play, but I'm glad I got my soul back playing me. I ain't losing
sleep if Massholes hate Potylo. New Englanders love trolling artists and bohemians with shit like "what do
you really do for a living?" "Saw the link didn't click". Most won't support creative types by going to a show or
buying a 6 buck bandcamp album cause they don't like that you're getting off the beaten path. I mean why
do they wanna see your band or comedy do good, when long ago they knocked up a girl, had 3 kids, settled
quietly and quickly. So now they're gonna support your creative ass, and cheer on your ambitions to be Joey
It's a weekend warrior music scene. Any successes creative-wise inadvertently points out the shackles on the
norms ankles, and they don't wanna see you fly!
What are your favorite Roadsteamer memories?
Kicking ass at the WBCN Rock and Roll Rumble and getting a job at the CBS radio station. Being able to walk
into WBCN everyday in full costume yelling at salespeople and management
MassCann Boston Freedom Rally, one of those years you performed, Roadsteamer proclaimed from
the stage during his set that he was there at the pro cannabis rally to “legalize cocaine” and it caused
Alot of MassCann folks weren't really happy with each other, so I'm not going to lose sleep over it. They
couldn't get the joke, about a dude in a wig, with faux snakeskin pants, yelling about legalizing cocaine. I'm not
down with coke in real life.
Tell us about your relationship with Kyle Carrao and Michael Malta, they are missed by the local cannabis
Yes, great follow-up! There were a lot great folks that I met at MassCann events and the Freedom Rally! And
some great bands I swear.
Malta was his own whole stoner universe
in the Boston cannabis community. Met
at a MassCann battle of the bands that
we judged. He was this cool character,
slick goatee, tight sunglasses. Had his
own damn industry with the King Of Pot
(KOP) branding, empowering people in
the cannabis community! Always had
that smile, like he was in on that joke
Dylan talks about in All Along The Watchtower.
Mike always wanted to make sure
you were in a good place. Loved having
him on my mockumentary series Quiet
Desperation. RIP KOP.
Kyle I got to know at the EMF building
in Cambridge. An Iraqi War vet who just
wanted to kick it with artists, MassCann
folks. He wanted to give back, and heal
people around him, through medicinal
weed, and good vibes. Had the plea-
Mike Crawford, Michael Malta "KOP"and Rob Potylo
sure of staying with him on his grow-farm in Maine
when I needed a friend after Chyna died. During that
stay, I watched him bring weed to so many people
dealing with devastating illnesses. And he was just a
fabulous human being to kick it with, blaze, and play
Call Of Duty. Talked to him on the phone in January,
and he was so excited about helping shake Mass-
Cann up. Miss him terribly.
You brought Ernie Boch, Jr to a Freedom Rally,
what did he think of the experience?
He had a blast! He loves the arts, weed, and America!
Introduced me at a rally! Such a rad dude! I've had so
many adventures with him. He's been the facilitator of
some great moments I had in Boston.
What are some of your favorite videos that you’ve
Protester sings to NYPD Lady Cop, I Put A Baby In
You, Hot Dogs And Applesauce on ABC's The Gong
Show, Quiet Desperation, Robby Roadsteamer on the
Fox Morning Show.
Songs you’ve written that you are most proud of?
I Put A Baby In You, Hot Dogs And Applesauce, Drawing
Which songs do your fans recognize you the most
“I Put A Baby In You”. It’s the best when people come
up to me on the street, and start talking about it, while
I'm with a lady friend trying to sound smart.
Any songs that have fan support that you have
been surprised about their popularity?
“I'm Sorry Your Cat Had Ass Cancer”! I mean it's a
brutal topic! Why would they cheer for it live?!!
You were working on a documentary with the
WWE hall of fame wrestler, Chyna before she
passed away, is that going to ever be released?
Yes. Before you even realize it! There's actually two in
production, both of which I had a huge hand in developing!
I guess I better lawyer up when they come out.
You grew up in Danvers, MA, tell us about the
town and why you have recently joined the most
trump loving Danvers facebook group?
Well they banned me from the group page today!
Danvers is 99% white, and loves their high school
tough guy hockey players. And if you don't play sports
or don’t plan on going to UMASS to study landscaping
then all the offspring of Masshole Dry-Wall repairers
who will pick on you until you leave town.
What are your thoughts on the controversy over
the Thin Blue Line flags being removed from Danvers
firetrucks and the rally they had in response?
Danvers will support everything cops, privileged, anything
Howie Carr tells them to lick the boots of.
How do you expect Black Lives Matter message to
be received in Danvers?
Danvers wants everything to be the fucking Truman
show 24/7. And don't you dare bring up Black Lives
Matter because they don't wanna change a thing.
Keepin it 1954 4evah!
Advice to younger artists in Boston today, what
does their future look like?
Being creative full-time is tough in Boston. If you really
wanna do it full-time, hit LA or New York, so you ain't
wasting half your energy arguing with trolling fucks,
who think you're wasting your life being a "creative
failure". If you do choose to stay in Boston, learn
online platforms inside and out for it! Youtube, TicTok,
Twitch, Bandcamp. Be your own industry.
You’ve met or worked with a lot of Hollywood celebrities,
any that were special or not nice?
Jeff Goldblum was very kind and flirty, I met him as
Robby Roadsteamer at a piano bar he sings at in Los
Feliz. Mike Myers likes singing "Hot Dogs And Applesauce!".
Jennifer Coolidge had me in her hotel room
in Boston for two hours, to go over singing “Happy
Birthday” to her Dad. Will Arnett has no soul. I told Ellen,
I have a nintendo in my closet that she can play.
The Gong Show, how did you land that, your song
on ABC primetime tv? Did you ever think? Do
people recognize you from it?
I just got back to Venice Beach from a twenty city tour
with Vermin Supreme and Matthew Silver on the East
Coast. Saw an audition for it at the Roosevelt Hotel
in Hollywood. Went down and crushed it singing "Hot
Dogs And Applesauce!"
Honestly, my dream in life was to sing an original
song on network TV, and it came true! On the f%&king
Gong Show with Mike Myers, ABC prime-time, four
million people watched. Plus I got to encore and
sing "Shaving Cream", made three grand more than
the winner, and was the only contestant to receive
a screen actors guild credit. Greatest Day ever! The
only truly natural things are dreams, which nature
cannot touch with decay.
People still come up to me at the Supermarket to ask
how I "beat the gong?"
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