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One hour and half before the Berkeley Patients Group, a marijuana dispensary, opens Monday, two men were lined up outside. We came to witness a small slice of history – the day that recreational marijuana was put on sale. The other, Anthony Moraga, was a sales representative and a driver for a marijuana company.
"I'm so excited," said Moraga. But he was also wondering why more people had not gone out. "People have queued for 24 hours for Star Wars," he said.
For those who fought for decades for the legalization of marijuana, Monday was a big problem. There were wet eyes at Harborside, an Oakland dispensary, when Steve DeAngelo, the executive director, referred to veterans of the legalization movement who did not live long enough to witness the big day .
But for many other cannabis fans in California the first day of legalization was something else – a holiday gift that they already had. It's been two decades since California introduced medical marijuana, and pretty much since the police stopped arresting people for possessing small personal hiding places.
Los Angeles and San Francisco begin to issue open dispensary permits, there will likely be a novelty effect. Many in the marijuana industry expect vigorous sales.
On Monday, a San Diego dispensary reported a 40-minute wait for clients. And the line is lying down later in the day at the Berkeley Patients Group, perhaps once people have slept the effects of the New Year's revelation. At the end of the day, the number of clients served was 1,500.
Yet for many Californians, the novelty of marijuana, easily accessible, has long since disappeared. The Sacramento Bee published a legalization article on Monday with the headline: "Where are all the people?"
A photographer friend in Minnesota sent me a question when I told him I'd spent New Year's Day: "Now, what will the whole rebels to feel rebellious? "
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• Do not call the tax on state income. It's a gift to the people of California. The (pie in the sky?) Ideas that lawmakers in high tax states are considering mitigating the impact of the newly adopted Republican tax overhaul . [The New York Times]
• The Californian Republican Strategy for Electoral Survival This Year: Repeals the Tax on Gasoline . [Opinion: Sacramento Bee]
• While State Lawmakers Investigate Allegations of Sexual Harassment in the State Capital – and Gaps in the Reporting and Disciplinary System to Prevent Them – the witnesses want to be independent and not controlled by state legislators. [Sacramento Bee]
• A Dilemma of Conduct and Cannabis : Contrary to the national limit of 0.08% alcohol concentration in blood used in D.U.I. arrests, there is no scientific consensus on a baseline blood THC level that can prove a disability. [San Francisco Chronicle]
• The wholesale price of the pot crushes while Californian farmers flood the marijuana market. They benefit from a grace period during which clinics can sell unregulated cannabis grown on the black market. [East Bay Express]
• In the foyer of Hollywood social media stars : Visit an apartment complex filled with YouTube entrepreneurs and "influencers". Videos shot there have been viewed billions of times. [The New York Times]
• An institution in Los Angeles – the LA Weekly – was sold and diverted from its liberal roots. A former editor in chief, Harold Meyerson, warns that "the Weekly without its liberal and anti-establishment policy is like" Hamlet "without the prince." [Los Angeles Times]
• Some inhabitants of the West Coast want to leave the aqueduct network . "The tap water? You drink toilet water with birth control medicines." [The New York Times]
• More than 150 people reportedly stung by stingrays for three days in Orange County Possible Cause: unusually hot weather [Hollywood Patch]
• Dogs and cats react very differently to natural disasters A woman in Santa Rosa leads the hunt for "fire cats" – pets who fled when fire storms engulfed parts of Sonoma County in Oct Many are still at liberty. [The New York Times]
And finally …
For Northern California football fans, the season has ended upside down . No Bay Area team qualifies for the playoffs, but the 49ers dominated the season with QB Jimmy Garoppolo who led the team to five wins in a row, the only NFL team to be unbeaten in December. And the former Super Bowl-dreaming Raiders fired their head coach Jack Del Rio after a very disappointing season that had notably lost the last four games.
For Garoppolo, who has made a terribly unbeatable team, it's time to float some big pay issues with 49ers management. Does he want to come back next year?
"Hum, I like being here," Garoppolo told reporters. "We had a good thing at the end of this year, you know, we'll see what happens."
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California Today is edited by Julie Bloom, who grew up in Los Angeles and graduated from UC Berkeley
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