Willie Nelson is unquestionably America’s best-loved octogenerian stoner, which means that there’s not a better person to consult with, if you’re a New York Times columnist looking to show that she’s not as inept when it comes to marijuana. That’s what Maureen Dowd did, after writing about her bad experience in Colorado earlier this summer, when she consumed too much of a weed-infused candy bar and subsequently experienced what she described as an hours-long “hallucinatory state.” In her Sunday column from the weekend, called “Two Redheaded Strangers,” Dowd hops onto the Honeysuckle Rose, Nelson’s tour bus, to talk pot.

Dowd received a few important tips from Willie, who knows of what he speaks. Here are a few fun facts about Willie Nelson’s own experiences with marijuana gleaned from Dowd’s conversation: 

He’s had too much before, too

Even the nation’s oldest and most famous stoner has made the same mistakes that Dowd made. According to the column, Nelson told Dowd that: 

“The same thing that happened to you happened to me one or two times when I was not aware of how much strength was in whatever I was eating,” Nelson said, in his honeyed voice. “One time, I ate a bunch of cookies that, I knew they were laced but I didn’t worry about it. I just wanted to see what it would do, and I overdid it, naturally, and I was laying there, and it felt like the flesh was falling off my bones.” 

He doesn’t like to get high off of edibles—but he understands the appeal

Nelson’s experience with the cookies that sent him into a Dowd-like spiral may not have been the turn off for him, but when he gets high, he’d rather not eat it. 

“Honestly, I don’t do edibles,” he continued. “I’d rather do it the old-fashioned way, because I don’t enjoy the high that the body gets. Although I realize there’s a lot of other people who have to have it that way, like the children that they’re bringing to Colorado right now for medical treatments. Those kids can’t smoke. So for those people, God bless ’em, we’re for it.”

He prefers to get it from a vaporizer these days

Nelson is an old man at this point, and smoking is not great for your lungs. Instead, he fancies a vaporizer. He also prefers pot to alcohol because it keeps him mellow. 

He showed me his pot vaporizer, noting: “Everybody’s got to kill their own snakes, as they say. I found out that pot is the best thing for me because I needed something to slow me down a little bit.” He was such a mean drunk, he said, that if he’d kept drinking heavily, “there’s no telling how many people I would have killed by now.”

(image via Flickr)