What does 420 friendly mean?
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It is 20 April and that means a whole lot of weed is going to be smoked across the planet, for it is 4/20.
The date has become known as ‘World Weed Day’ and sees thousands gather at events to enjoy the drug and to demonstrate in favour of decriminalising it.
Hyde Park in London will see the biggest gathering in the UK today, where a few thousand people always turn up to show their passion for pot.
The meaning behind the term 4/20 has always thrown up a bit of confusion, as has the term ‘4/20 friendly.’ We explain everything here…
What does 4/20 friendly mean?
This is quite often seen on websites advertising for housemates, tennants or possibly dating apps.
It simply means that the person or place is accepting of people who smoke weed and probably do themselves.
Why does 4/20 mean weed?
World Weed Day is obviously called 4/20 because it takes place on 20 April, which is 4/20 if you write it the American way round of month first, day second.
However, the reason weed is referred to 4/20 at all has many theories behind it.
Our Ellen Scott runs through the theories…
People think 4/20 refers to a secret police code
I’ll be real. This is EXACTLY what I always thought 4/20 referred to, and it seems to be what most cannabis fans believe when it comes to the day.
People claim that 420 is the radio code used by police to describe catching anyone smoking weed. And so, weed-smokers took over the code for their own reference and made 4/20 their special weed-smoking day.
But actually, the 420 code is actually used for homicide. Dark.
People also think 420 is the number of chemical compounds in cannabis
This is not true.
There are also theories that 420 comes from a Bob Dylan song
Yep, some geniuses have noted that 12 x 35 equals 420. And 12 and 35 happen to be the numbers referenced in Bob Dylan’s song ‘Rainy Day Women #12 & 35’. Whaaaa.
Bob Dylan also chants ‘everybody must get stoned!’ in the song, which adds to this theory’s power.
But here’s the truth (as far as we know): 4/20 is all down to a group of students
This, according to the internet, is the most credible story out there on the origins of 4/20 – as told in its entirety to the Huffington Post.
Back in 1971, five students at San Rafael High School in California would meet at 4.20pm – right after doing their after-school sports – by the school’s statue of Louis Pasteur to toke up.
It became a tradition, and the group, who called themselves The Waldos, began using 420 as a shorthand for smoking weed.
This spread, 4.20pm became known as the perfect time for smoking weed, and the number 420 became synonymous with marijuana. Whoa.
It is 20 April and that means a whole lot of weed is going to be smoked across the planet, for it is 4/20. The date has become known as…
What 420 Means in the Pot Smoking Culture
Amy Morin, LCSW, is the Editor-in-Chief of Verywell Mind. She’s also a psychotherapist, international bestselling author and host of the Mentally Strong People podcast.
Doug Menuez / Photodisc / Getty Images
The term 420 is a word used to reference pot smoking. While the term was historically used as a “code” to designate someone’s activities or beliefs, such as “420 friendly,” most people are now aware of its association with marijuana.
Despite the popularity of the term, most people have no idea how or why 420 became associated with marijuana. There are a lot of myths and stories about its origins.
Known 420 Myths
There are many rumors floating around about why the term 420 is used. Here are some of the most popular myths:
Myth: Police dispatch code for smoking pot is 420.
The number 420 is not actually a police radio code for anything. Although it was widely suggested that 420 was associated with the California Penal Code, 420 refers to a law about public land.
Myth: There are approximately 420 active chemicals in marijuana.
There are actually more like 315 active chemicals in marijuana. This number goes up and down depending on the make-up of the marijuana.
Myth: April 20th is National Pot Smokers Day.
While some people believed April 20th is the day you should start growing your marijuana crop, others believed it was some sort of holiday. But neither is true. Instead, the term 420 led people to think April 20 was somehow associated with marijuana. The date doesn’t actually have any significance.
Myth: April 20th is Hitler’s birthday.
Although that was Hitler’s birth date, the term 420 referred to a time, not a date. And his birthday had nothing to do with it.
Myth: April 20th is the date of the Columbine school shootings.
Although the Columbine shooting occurred on April 20th, 1999, the term was already in place long before the incident.
The Origin Revealed
According to Steve Bloom, an editor at High Times magazine, the term 420 originated at San Rafael High School, in 1971.
A group of about a dozen people who called themselves the Waldos met up to smoke marijuana at 4:20 every day. Rather than announce they were going to get high, they used to the code 420.
Apparently, the term spread. Over the years, its origins were lost but the “code” stuck.
What It Means to Today’s Teens
While the term 420 has been around for a long time, the internet hasn’t. And many of today’s teens are accessing pictures, games, and websites that glorify marijuana on a regular basis.
Of course, many teens have no idea that it’s an old phrase. So they use the slang term liberally in front of adults, thinking it’s a secret term developed by today’s drug subculture.
Thinking that it’s cool to smoke marijuana every day at 4:20, or assuming you have to participate in smoking on April 20th, can lead teens to join in.
Social media often glorifies drug use and it’s easier than ever for teens to get caught up in thinking “everyone is doing it.”
The legalization of marijuana in some states, or the term “medical marijuana,” may lead teens to believe marijuana is safe to use.
The term 420 has been around for a long time, but most people have no idea how it became associated with pot.