High Times Greats: Interview With Nick Offerman | High Times

For the May, 2013 issue of High Times, David Bienenstock interviewed Nick Offerman, who turns 51 years old on June 26 .
Nick Offerman arrives for his High Times interview and photograph shoot directly from the set of NBC ’ s hit comedy Parks and Recreation, in which he stars as libertarian bureaucrat Ron Swanson. A victor woodworker angstrom well as an actor, writer and manufacturer, Offerman sports Swanson ’ second signature bushy mustache and a well-worn Willie Nelson jersey. For show-and-tell, he ’ mho brought along a coffin-shaped hoard box and a Lord Of The Rings –style pot pipe, both of which he made himself .
Offerman grew up on a farm in rural Illinois, where he learned a love of tools and craft that he ’ second developed throughout his life. As a struggling young actor in Chicago ’ s influential Storefront Theater scene, he built sets and props for local anesthetic productions as a way to get a foundation in the door, and besides to supplement his meager income. Years late, after moving to southerly California to pursue film and television roles, he opened Offerman Woodshop, his own craft studio in Los Angeles .
And if all else fails, he can always fall spinal column on showbiz, since his culturally iconic depiction of America ’ s favored flesh-eating, gun-toting, property-rights-defending Parks Department employee has recently made Offerman a hot place in Hollywood. Along with his real-life wife ( and Ron Swanson ex-wife ), Megan Mullally, he ’ ll be appearing in Somebody Up There Likes Me, an far-out modern indie drollery from Bob Byington, the writer and conductor of RSO and Harmony and Me. Offerman will besides be featured ( along with Jennifer Aniston and Jason Sudeikis ) in We’re The Millers, a drollery about an elaborate plot to smuggle a thousand pounds of batch across the Mexican molding.

Given these high-profile appearances and his well-known sleep together of bacon, we decided to tempt the homo behind the mustache with a plate full of maple bacon cannabis chocolate chip cookies, specially made in his award by the writer of our very own official High Times Cannabis Cookbook. Sitting down to sample one between photos, Offerman appeared to take capital please in fielding our questions .

Nick Offerman Gets Stoned with High Times

Could you start by telling me a little more about the coffin-shaped stashbox and Gandalf pipe you’ve brought?
Offerman: First of all, this Maple Bacon Ganja Chocolate Chip Cookie is blasted delightful. Was that the question ? Because that ’ s my answer …
Okay, the coffin-shaped hoard box is adorned with the countenance of J.R. “ Bob ” Dobbs, the High Epopt of the Church of the SubGenius—a fake religion based out of Dallas that ’ s been around since 1979. It ’ s in truth funny story : Bob Dobbs preaches “ Get slack and smoke frop, ” which is weed. They precisely promote a eldritch, tea-head life style. My friends and I were very into this church in college and field school .
Years later, when I was making a chocolate table for one of those friends and his wife, I knew that this detail supporter was going to need some home to stash his weed. And since he loves all things macabre, I made a coffin-shaped box that fits neatly into a unavowed compartment underneath the board .
As for the pipe, if you enjoy smoking and you ’ re a fan of the write of J.R.R. Tolkien, I think it ’ s alone natural that you dream of making such a pipe. But first base you must learn how to drill a hole through a thinly, curved pipe, which is very difficult. So when I finally discerned how I could achieve such a thing, I immediately did so .
Have you ever used marijuana while acting?
Offerman: I tried it once when I beginning started smoking batch back in college. I thought : “ Marijuana is amazing ! The world is so beautiful—it ’ s going to be so cool when I get very high and then perform in this production of Man of La Mancha. ” So I did it. And, you know, one of the things new initiates frequently say when they first gear smoke toilet is, “ I feel like everybody ’ s looking at me. ”
well, when you ’ ra standing on a stage and people have paid money—they are indeed looking at you. It was quite formidable. I got specially freaked out because I had a scene where Sancho Panza hit me upside the head with his guitar, and normally I would do this half back-handspring thing and make it look like I landed on my face. nowadays, I ’ m not sure precisely what I did on this detail juncture, but I jumped improving and spun and flipped and managed to land squarely on my temple—in fact, I busted my head open. And I actually had three humble roles in the play, indeed for the perch of the show, all three characters had a streak of blood running down their cheek. And that was the final time I tried smoking pot before going onstage .
Is marijuana ever a part of your creative process if you’re not performing?
Offerman: When I use weed creatively, I ’ thousand much better at drawing or making something or play music. But what I do for a living is largely performing as an actor or write, and for those things I need to have my faculties astute. indeed I ’ d say that, indirectly, it ’ south identical helpful. The doors that I open when I ’ meter using cannabis profoundly affect the torso of cognition I have to draw from when I play characters or write about life situations. Aside from Maple Bacon Ganja Chocolate Chip Cookies, do you have a favorite edible?
Offerman: Well, I have to say that the flower, the salad days, of my pot career was in my twenties and early on thirties, and I wasn ’ deoxythymidine monophosphate around a crowd that knew how to do a lot more than make brownies… but we decidedly visited Xanadu once or doubly under the influence of those brownies .
By and bombastic, though, most of my cannabis career has involved joints and pipes and bongs. When I started out in my theater ship’s company, one of the guys had an eight-foot bong. And there was a quite olympian rival that we would engage in trying to clear it : You had to stand on a coffee mesa and get person else to light it for you. lone at a young age—maybe 23 or 24—could a few of us actually clear an eight-foot rip. And then you would fall on the floor and smile for 11 hours .
How were you feeling on election night when Colorado and Washington voted to legalize marijuana?
Offerman: Fantastic. Civilization is very funny, I think : We started out as animals, and over time we ’ ve developed to a point where, lento but surely, we ’ re trying to make everything cool for everybody. We barely 15 minutes ago, relatively speaking, announced that it ’ mho o for black people to be treated the like as white people. We barely came up with that .
Of course, some of us are progressing faster than others. When it comes to marijuana, I think it ’ mho farcical to live in a area that espouses exemption, liberty and equality, even won ’ thyroxine follow through on a philosophy that says : “ If it ’ s not hurting anybody or their place, you can do any goddamn thing you want. ”

Do you have a favorite stoner comedy?
Offerman: The Big Lebowski is fair about my darling movie—to me, it takes the stone comedy to a more heavy tied. I find it just as amusing completely square .
What person, living or dead, would you most like to smoke herb with?
Offerman: Oh, gosh… Thomas Jefferson comes to mind. I like a lot of his agrarian ideas, and I think it ’ sulfur unfortunate that our nation has veered away from his suggestions. I ’ five hundred beloved to take a walk on his back 40 and hear what he had to say over a decent bowl of cannabis .
Do you have a favorite marijuana strain… something worthy of sharing with one of the Founding Fathers?
Offerman: I ’ ve sampled a lot of amazing varieties, but I normally get told the name of it merely before we smoke—and then by the time we ’ re done, it ’ s all I can do to remember the name of the guy who loaded the bowl, never mind the weed. so, basically, if we ’ ra both here—wherever that is—whatever you ’ ve catch is going to be good bang-up with me .
Your co-star on Parks and Recreation, Amy Poehler, once performed at the High Times Cannabis Cup, an event dedicated to naming the best weed in the world…
Offerman: Yes, she speaks very highly of that experience .
Ever been to Amsterdam?
Offerman: Just once. Or possibly doubly [ laughs ] … they tell me I had a very good time. It was such a beautiful city, therefore picturesque on its own. But then you have a taste of some all right hashish, and the canals grow even more gorgeous .
What’s the connection between marijuana and facial hair?
Offerman: That ’ s an interesting question—one I have not considered ahead now. I surely vastly prefer smoking a bowl with a byssus to doing therefore while clean-shaven. I don ’ thymine know what it is on an elemental level, but a beard in general evokes hedonism. It ’ s a more exuberant personal dress stylus. It ’ s more comfortable and cozy ; it ’ mho less sharp and angular and businesslike. For lack of a better phrase, I feel like a beard is more Hobbit-like, even though Hobbits themselves are clean-shaven. There ’ second something indulgent about a big, bushy beard that goes handwriting in handwriting with smoking longbottom leaf out of your pipe .
Do you miss what you called the “dirt weed” that you enjoyed back in college, or are you into the more pristine modern buds here in Southern California?
Offerman: Yes and yes [ laughs ]. I guess I didn ’ t know any better when I started smoking in the late ’ 80s. And anyhow, it couldn ’ t have been that bad, because we got fabulously high .
My friend Joe, who got me started, did such a beautiful job—because, as we all know, it can take a while when you ’ re turning person on for the first time for them to feel it. He sat me down with this pipe of his and said, “ You ’ re going to cough, but you have to take these huge hits, and it ’ south going to take like four or five bowls. ” He made me keep smoke until there was no question as to its efficacy. then yes, I ’ thousand reasonably nostalgic for the gorge we used to get spinal column then. I ’ megabyte guessing it came from Mexico. I was once offered the find to make a run down to Mexico to pick some up, but I declined .
meanwhile, I ’ ve been astonished over the path of my 20-something years of toilet smoke by the degree of improvement in the timbre. And now, of path, I reside in a state where they ’ ve been perfecting their cultivation techniques for decades. When I first came to California in my twenties and ran into people who grew their own weed, I just didn ’ thymine know what to think. I felt like I had stepped through the looking glass. I thought : “ This is precisely like that denounce I read about in High Times ! ”
Were you a regular reader?
Offerman: The only periodical I ’ ve managed to stick with throughout my life is Fine Woodworking. That ’ second my throng, as they say. But my tribe back in college, we subscribed to High Times, Fangoria and a handful of other playfulness, crazy magazines. Each person would subscribe to one, and then we would partake them all. And I can remember that we used to freak out at the centerfolds of improbable buds. And then it just blew my mind to move away to California and learn that it was all real ! We constantly thought that it must have been the High Times art department making them look so sticky and empurpled .
besides, more badly, I grew up in a very conservative little town, and the fact that there could actually be a magazine like that was abysmal to me.

Now that you’re going to be featured in High Times, is there anything you’d like to say to those guys you used to share a subscription with?
Offerman: This is a bally honor. I ’ ve done magazine interviews before, but this is the first time I ’ ve madly emailed 12 of my friends and said, “ I ’ ve ultimately made it ! ” so yea, I ’ vitamin d love to send a shoutout to my original early on tribe, who took me under their resin-stained wings and taught me how to smoke out of an apple : Joey Java, Ragsdale, Pee-Pee, Hortatsos, Tatro, Prescher, Flanigan, Falcon-Smoker, Goliath and all the rest … Many of us went on to become Chicago ’ s Defiant Theatre and tickle dozens of people with our high-energy japers and ribaldry. I can honestly say that landing in High Times was beyond our wildest dream, so I think I can consider this the point .
Thanks, pot !

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