By Niraj Chokshi
Go ahead, get the jokes out of your system. The staff of High Times, the counterculture drug magazine, has heard them all before.
For 40 years, they’ve put up with stoner quips and stereotypes. “People have this idea that we sit around and get high all day,” says Danny Danko, the magazine’s senior cultivation editor and author of its field guide to marijuana strains.
But as High Times celebrates its 40th anniversary with a special November issue that comes out Tuesday and is the largest in its history, the laughs are fewer and further between.
What started as an experiment by a mercurial provocateur and underground publisher has blossomed into an established brand, offering everything from licensing partnerships and an ever-expanding domestic events business to a just-launched private- equity fund. Along the way, something else changed: The magazine’s radical reason for being has stopped feeling so radical, even if the magazine itself hasn’t.
“There’s a feeling like now is our time in the sun,” said the editor in chief, Chris Simunek.