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RE: 420 Origin
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The idea that kids would return to school about an hour and a half after school ended to smoke pot is ridiculous. I don't know how this story has gotten to be recognized as fact. What did the students (I attended San Rafael High in 1974) do from the time the final bell rang until 4:20 after the buses had long left and the time kids were expected home was at hand? I don't think they all got home stoned just in time for dad to get home. Again, ridiculous



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Here's the Wikipedia answer: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Four_twenty

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I beg to differ Paul. The term was used at SRHS. I first heard it there in '74 or so. Our group didn't invent it so it was started prior to that point.

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I never heard the term until the 80's in southern and west Marin, it was always " Boast ", since the early 70's. The first time I saw it as graffiti was on a concrete retaining wall at Bolinas beach, I asked some local kids what it was about. They told me that the high school bus would leave Tam High at 3:30, and would arrive in Bolinas at 4;20 when they would all " cut loose " with all the good boast on the beach. I believed it until now some people claiming that it was started in San Rafael many years before. I talked to some older SRHS graduates about it and they told me that was horsepuckey, they did not invent it. Also I had a girl friend that went to SRHS during 78-79 and met a bunch of her friends who were cool, and not one of them ever mentioned 420. Another story is it was started in San Anselmo by a chemistry student. Supposidly there are 420 compounds in cannibis. It's like SKIDS graffiti on stop signs, supposidly started by a rock band in San Anselmo.

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Pre-Internet, how does something like that actually spread across the country?

I always used to wonder about school slang and how it varied around the state and country. Someone once said all the new expressions started in LA and made their way north and east.


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http://www.snopes.com/language/stories/420.htm

"It's both more and less than people make it out to be. '420' began its sub-rosa linguistic career in 1971 as a bit of slang casually used by a group of high school kids at San Rafael High School in California. '420' (always pronounced "four-twenty," never "four hundred and twenty") came Is it 4:20 already? to be an accepted part of the argot within that group of about a dozen pot smokers, beginning as a reminder of the time they planned to meet to light up, 4:20 p.m. Keep in mind this wasn't a general call to all dope smokers everywhere to toke up at twenty past four every day; it was twelve kids who'd made a date to meet near a certain statue. It's thus incorrect to deem that '420' originated as a national or international dope-smoking time, even though the term began as a reference to a particular time of day."

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Anonymous

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My son told me that he saw some sort of news report that stated that the term started back in 1975 at SRHS - 4:20 was the time those who had to stay after school were released from school. 420 became a code word for when they would get together.

Pretty sad since I was in SRHS at that time and had no clue whatsoever where the term came from until enlightened by my teenage son!



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Anonymous

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There have been many theories as to the origin of 420. I happen to have my own, but i don't want to "muddy the waters". Any feedback ? Rick. SRHS '76

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