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"Example is not the main thing in influencing others. It is the only thing."
Albert Schweitzer
"Marihuana makes fiends of boys in thirty days -- Hashish goads users to bloodlust."
Hearst newspapers, circa 1936
"Petty laws breed great crimes."
Ouida, 1880

The House that Hemp Built

By the Legalise Cannabis Alliance

You wake up in the morning, slip out of your cosy hempen sheets and blankets and into a soft, warm hemp robe. The shower is lovely and hot, and these new hemp towels are so soft, thick and absorbent.

Open the window and take a deep breath. You notice how fresh the air is, blowing over the hempfields, scented with new flowers.

Over breakfast you can't help but notice how good the eggs are. Whatever they're feeding those hens sure makes them tasty. You pick up the newspaper, made with recycled hemp paper - violent crimes and property theft are at a record low. Another forest is officially preserved for posterity. Excellent.

When you stand up, you notice your leg is a little sore from that walk through the newly reforested National Park yesterday.

"Can you hand me the cannabis balm out of the cabinet," you ask. "And the antibiotic cannabis cream, too, I've got a few scratches here.

As you head out the door, you smile as you remember how you only recently discovered you were allergic to synthetic fibres and had to have the carpets replaced with hemp weave. And you thought you had hay fever all these years.

In the garage you notice that the fibreboard beams look even better since they were varnished with non-toxic seed-oil sealant.

You drive out of the garage and head down the road, past tall stands of hemp alternating with wheat, barley and other crops. Since most of the car is made of lightweight re-fabricated vegetable matter instead of steel, it doesn't use much fuel, and that new hemp-ahol blend works great.

Most of the day is spent meeting with clients to review their plan to convert an old steel mill and make PVC plumbing parts, electrical insulation and fibre optic cables out of recycled plastic and cellulose from that big new hemp processor they use at the re-opened textile mill.

You resolve a few minor problems, print the report on a laser printer and make a stack of photocopies. Now that the copier uses seed oil instead of toner the quality is as good as real printing. Since the proposal is not finalised you use blended hemp and recycled paper for copies today, saving the 100 per cent hemp paper for the final version.

You get home for dinner - hemp nut-loaf, delicious as usual.

Tomorrow is your turn to cook, so you start planning the menu. There are plenty of hemp sprouts ready for a salad and hempseed oil for the dressing. You mother is coming over, so you decide to pick up a packet of barbecue-roasted hemp seed for her to nibble, to help her digestion.

"Your cousin got a job over at the textile mill, and they're opening up a new hempseed coffee shop in the High Street. Did you notice the neighbours have installed a biofuel unit for their garden rubbish? By the way, the electric bill came."

With a nice, hot cup of hemp flower tea, you settle back in your soft hemp tow-upholstered chair and open the bill. You breathe a sigh of relief. Not so bad since they decommissioned the nuclear reactor and converted it to use biomass fuel. The power company saved so much money on transport and insurance that rates have actually gone down.

This, you tell yourself, is how life is meant to be. And if other people have different ideas about how to live, so be it. After all, it is a free country.

Adapted from 'Hemp, Lifeline to the Future' by Chris Conrad

Printed, published & promoted by the Legalise Cannabis Alliance, PO Box 198, Norwich NR2 2DH