I went to the Traditional Wuanaland event in downtown Los Angeles yesterday where there were friendly women handing out hoodies, grinders, lighters, etc., and Creative Directors with long hair also from Chicago—well, technically a suburb, but you know what I mean. There were 3-D artists, muralists, and photographers. One of the co-owners of the facility, Dima (aka Russian Assassin Boyz), led me through all these different rooms, from the “Mother Room” to the packaging room, each with their own divine fragrance. It was the most impressive space that I’ve seen since Casa Luis Barragán. Thank you for the tour, Dima; you’re doing excellent work.
Aside from all of that stuff, there were drones, and influencers with a lot of style—a lot of style indeed. There were food trucks, snow cone and gummy vendors, churros by Hippie Churro; I wandered around the retail side of the facility and saw a chihuahua—which completely brightened up my day—and talked with one of the budtenders named José who was eager to answer any question I had, so I asked him what his favorite strain was and he listed off three, like any great salesman would.
I must have drank five bottles of water, so good thing there were portable toilets (fancy ones). There was a VIP section and a VVIP section—a “WIP” section, perhaps?—both of which required specific wristbands. I went in each of them, and I will say, there was a lot more jewelry in the latter; the lights were dimmer and they had comfortable couches. DaBaby was there. As was Antonio Brown, who I FaceTimed with earlier in the day, and he said, “Traditional [is] the best ever. Listen, the Gelato—the orange pack—will change your life. It’s the best product, it’s the best vibe in Cali. You feel me?” Our in-person interactions were limited, but he seemed genuine and tired of being famous. I wish him luck.
Gunna performed, which was cool.
I spoke with the mysterious man behind the Traditional brand, who not only co-owns and operates the DTLA facility alongside Dima, but also runs his fair share of cannabis grows throughout California. He talked for thirty minutes about a bunch of things, including how he went from growing weed in his garage to building over 160,000 sq. ft of indoor cultivation warehouses in California City, and how “the government doesn’t want federal legalization because they want to control it state-by-state; and local governments … they don’t want legalization either, because they’re making so much money through their state with all these high taxes.” He also said, “We want to bring a stigma back about cannabis that it’s for everybody … Weed doesn’t discriminate, right? Just like us, we love everybody; there’s no race, there’s no religion, there’s no color. This is all about green.” And walking through the event, seeing all the different types of people—college kids, senior citizens, Asian, Latino, etc. etc. etc.—I kind of believed him.
I would be remiss if I didn’t mention Arthur Reyna, one of Traditional’s attorneys. He wore a suit, which made him stick out more than the celebrities, and he was by far, one of the most hospitable people that I’ve met in the cannabis industry and beyond. His wife Lauren was very nice too.
I saw people twerking, networking, and trying hard to exist in a world that would prefer if we disappeared; however, if this event showed me one thing, it’s that smokers, celebrities, and humans in general will be here for a while, laughing, dying, regenerating, then laughing some more.
Overall, I had a wonderful time—if you’re ever in Los Angeles, make it a priority to check out Traditional. But, like any party, the best part was leaving and, soon thereafter, going to bed.