Long story short, there isn’t any.

Not really, anyway, because for an oil to be a “Rick Simpson Oil,” it needs to me made by Rick Simpson. That’s just how it works. And honestly, I thought the guy was dead, but as it turns out, he’s living happily in Croatia because the Canadian Mounties raided his home, and he decided to leave Canada forever. But I should back up…

In the late nineties, Rick was standing on a ladder in a small room coating asbestos-insulated pipes with some sort of industrial adhesive, and he fell and hit his head (pretty much exactly like Doc did just before he dreamed up the Flux Capacitor). When Rick woke up, he was in a hospital, and when he left, the doctors gave him all sorts of pills that didn’t do much. So he asked for medicinal marijuana, and when they wouldn’t give him any, he went home and started messing around with cannabis extraction techniques in his backyard.

He mixed a bunch of marijuana with some alcohol in a bucket, stirred it with a stick, poured the alcohol onto a tray, let it evaporate, and then voila; he’d made his first batch of Rick Simpson Oil. But a few months down the road, he was diagnosed with terminal skin cancer. So he made some more oil, rubbed it on his skin (and took regular doses orally), and according to legend, the cannabis cured his cancer.

Of course, I don’t know that for a fact—there aren’t any peer-reviewed medical journals that I could find to espouse any sort of tangible evidence that Rick’s cancer was cured, nor could I find any proof that he had it in the first place, so please don’t think that the guy who writes the Greenery’s blog is telling you that all you need to cure cancer is weed, alcohol, a bucket, and a stick. If it really were that simple, cancer wouldn’t be as scary as it is.

Anyway, Rick began making tons of RSO and sending it to people who were looking for wholistic alternatives (that’s when he pissed off the Mounties). He started proselytizing like some sort of pot prophet, angered too many politicians, and then moved to Croatia where he makes a living selling his RSO cookbook online for $35.75 plus shipping and handling.

There. We’re all caught up, and now I can tell you about the oil itself: just about everything we make nowadays in Colorado is better. I know there’s something enticing about buying a book and cooking up the cure to cancer in your kitchen, and I don’t have any evidence proving it doesn’t work, so I support anyone’s right to try. But now we have scientists making our cannabis oil, real ones with doctorates who didn’t fall off a ladder and start their first batch in the backyard. We have consortiums of investors who pool their money and hire hordes of geniuses to work in world-class labs that look like they belong someplace only Marty McFly could go. And these products are spectacular.

In our Durango dispensary, we sell one gram of pure CO2-extracted cannabis oil in a glass syringe from Sweet for $50 before tax—it delivers a perfect balance between THC and CBD with lab-tested percentages that simply couldn’t be produced in Rick’s day because cannabis was illegal (you know, without scientists and whatnot like we have thirty years later here in legal Colorado). Many of our customers are battling cancer and they swear by this stuff. They’ll rub it on or eat it or smoke it and they tell me they love it. I don’t know if it cures anything yet—time will tell, and many are hopeful—but if you think about it, that doesn’t really matter because it makes suffering people feel better, and that’s important.

And we sell salves (Mary Jane’s Medicinals) that combine everything Rick Simpson was trying to get into a pleasant-smelling topical. Salves such as these are some of the bestsellers on the market, and we sell the one-ounce container for $15 before tax if you’d like to try it for yourself. This is the stuff the little old ladies come in for daily. They’re usually bright and happy to see me, and I’ll always run over to help them find their driver’s license, usually with a coy smile when I ask to see their I.D. And they keep coming back because the better-half of the Greatest Generation seems to love cannabis salve.

Frankly, the Sweet CO2 Oil and the Salves I just told you about are the closest things on the market to RSO (except for “Phoenix Tears,” which is just another form of oil), but some people would have you believe otherwise. There are plenty of companies out there selling “Rick Simpson Oil” and Rick Simpson himself spends a good deal of his time sending messages to these companies from Croatia telling them to stop using his name, but they never do because marijuana products are federally illegal, ergo copyright laws don’t yet extend to this industry of ours. So, manufacturers keep slapping Rick’s name on things because it helps them sell so well, and people keep falling for it thanks to the name recognition.

I spend most of my time sitting right here in front of this computer and it’s by one of our telephones, so I’m usually the one who answers when someone calls our dispensary, The Greenery, and at least one person calls in every week asking for Rick Simpson Oil. I’ll always give them an abridged version of the ten paragraphs you just read, and when they come in, I’ll show them the two products I just told you about and send them on their way with confidence. But if you still have questions about infused topicals that might actually be better than Rick Simpson Oil (but without the name everyone knows), just come see Your Best Buds at 208 Parker Avenue in Durango (or call us at 970-403-3710), and we’ll show you all the new stuff on the market so you don’t have to make it in your backyard with a bucket.


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