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Budtenders are all the rage – you want to be one; your mom wants to be one (sidebar: your mom is super cool). Not only is cannabis a profitable and thriving industry that so many people are trying to break into, but it’s exciting. As a budtender, you can work on the frontlines of progress and help people find the herb that makes a difference in so many lives.

However, the role of a budtender involves a certain level of customer service – budtenders work with people, after all. And they want people to work with them in return.

How Not to Treat your Budtender

So, how should you treat your budtender? You can start by not doing the following:

Don’t pretend that you’re more knowledgeable than they are: We know, we know – you’ve been smoking weed since you were yay high. You son’s name is Herb and your daughter’s name is Mary. You grow it in your basement and you can list all the terpenes in order. Even so, you probably still don’t know as much as a budtender. This isn’t to say you aren’t wise to the weed, but budtenders have jobs where they must know everything or else those jobs go away. In short, they’re more motivated towards knowledge that you.How Not to Treat Your Budtender

Don’t assume your budtender will make an exception, just this one time: Sure, the bouncer down the street lets you into the club every Tuesday night even though he knows you’re only 20. But don’t expect the same from your budtender. Because weed is illegal under Federal law, it’s placed under a scrutiny other industries aren’t. This means budtenders won’t make exceptions no matter how many times you tell that you graduated with their third cousin. Doing so could put their job at risk, not to mention the whole dispensary.

Don’t treat them like a dealer: Your budtender is not your dealer – don’t try to ask for discounts or a transaction sold under the table. Weed is now a legitimate business and budtenders take their jobs seriously. There’s a reason their uniforms don’t come with pagers.

Don’t ask them if they know where you can get harder drugs: Again, not a dealer…and you may have a problem.

Don’t commandeer their time: Budtenders are exceptionally good at helping people who are new to the herb. If you know nothing about marijuana, a good budtender will be kind and patient and answer any of your cannabis-related questions. Questions that are not about marijuana, on the other hand, can waste everyone’s time. If you want to ask your budtender about the side effects of Blue Dream, go right ahead. If you want to tell him about the crazy dream you had last night, you might want to refrain. This is especially true when there’s a dispensary filled with customers.

Don’t ignore their advice: A good budtender knows marijuana intimately – they study and learn endlessly. As a result, the advice they dole out is generally solid; it’s usually in your best interest to take it. This is most important when it comes to potent strains or things like dabs – if your budtender tells you something should be avoided until you have more experience, they’re probably right. It’s better to listen from the beginning than find yourself unable to remove yourself from your friend’s futon even as the armrest tries to eat you.

Don’t pay in pennies: Dispensaries, as a rule, only take cash (though some accept credit cards on the down low). This isn’t their rule and most probably dislike it: they want VISA to be everywhere you want to be. Most also have ATMS on site for your convenience. Thus, don’t punish them for only accepting cold hard cash. In other words, pay in bills, not change. No one wants to count out hundreds of pennies so you can buy a gram.

Don’t ask for free samples: Somewhere, some dispensaries probably do offer free samples: you can point at the herb you want to try much like you How Not to Treat Your Budtenderdo inside an ice cream shop. But, unless you’re at a store with a policy like this, don’t refuse to purchase something on the condition that you try it first.

And never ask to sample everything in the store. That’s what Costco on Saturdays is for

Don’t blame them for your reactions: Between route of consumption and choice of strain, cannabis comes in all kinds of variety. And it elicits all kinds of effects too. While certain general rules apply – i.e., strains high in THC like Green Crack, tend to cause the munchies – it’s not an exact science. Different people react differently based on experience, gender, body weight, body chemistry, food consumption, and probably other things we haven’t considered yet. Budtenders make a suggestion based on what is likely to happen, but there are no guarantees. That’s why starting slow any time you try something new is always prudent. Once you love it, then you can go to town.

Jenn Keeler

About the author: Jenn Keeler is a freelance writer and illustrator specializing in humorous lifestyle articles. She is one of the few people on earth actually using an English degree. Her heart belongs to the Denver Broncos and her husband. In that order.