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Pigs soar, hell becomes a hockey rink, and Willie Nelson says he's done smoking weed

December 04, 2019
Willie Nelson's 4th of July Picnic

Rick Kern

My fellow Americans. It is with a heavy heart that today we bring you news that Willie Nelson—country legend and human icon—has passed...the joint that is. Last week, the road-tested troubadour and worldwide ambassador for weed, admitted to KSAT 12 that at 86-years-old, it is finally time for him to hang up his rolling papers.

I have abused my lungs quite a bit in the past, so breathing is a little more difficult these days and I have to be careful. I started smoking cedar bark, went from that to cigarettes to whatever. And that almost killed me....I don’t smoke anymore - take better care of myself. I don’t give a (expletive deleted) I’m here, I’m glad to be here, I’m lucky to be here.

We can all guess what "whatever" is. Nelson, despite his trademark braids and ear for an everyman hook, is best know for his, er, predilection for the green stuff, so this constitutes massive news in the American cultural landscape. The legends of Willie's weed are as far reaching as they hilarious, including that time he nearly blinded Chelsea Handler with his own proprietary strain...

...and elicited a geek out (actual scientific term) from eternal cool guy Timothy Olyphant.

Alas, it appears there are no new ones to be written. Nelson cited weed as having saved his life as recently as this spring, but now he's giving it up to save his life. Make of that what you will. But on the bright side, maybe this newfound abstinence will help Willie squeeze in a few extra rounds with his son Lukas, who has developed a grass obsession slightly nearer and dearer to our hearts. In a recent interview, Lukas told us the story of watching his father jar an eagle with a three wood at Maui Country Club on Christmas Day in 2016, celebrating the feat by, as the younger Nelson put it, lighting up "a fat one." Perhaps when the stories are already this good, we don't need new ones after all.