Hello, I quit my cushy office job in Sydney last year to go work in a Queensland bong factory. I quit the bong factory a few months later too, maybe because I just hate working.
Nonetheless, during this time I learned some (valuable?) lessons from my stint there, and I am a sharer at heart. So without further ado, here are six observations I made while wearing thongs and sellin’ bongs.
1. Aussies smoke weed, big time
We love our bread, we love our butter but most of all, we love marijuana. (Seriously, according to this survey we are officially the biggest bong rats in the entire goddamn world.) One thing working in bong sales will teach you is that a LOT of people are smoking weed down under. Someone crack a window in this mf.
We sold plenty of bongs indeed, every day. I know you are meant to be able to smoke tobacco out of them too but I’ve never come across such a tobacco gollum in my life, so I assume all these people are all ripping doja.
This gives me a good indication (omg that just came to me while writing this, you guys) that the cannabis industry will be a good one to be in when the Australian government gives two legal thumbs up to Mary Jane. I’m seriously thinking of getting an agricultural degree now — will be like investing in Bitcoin in 2012.
2. Queenslanders are the biggest bong heads
Congrats, guys! Awesome work! Judging from your harsh weed laws I really didn’t think you had it in you. Although our bong sales were from around Australia, every second or third order had to be from a Queenslander, I reckon. And to be honest, the few friends I made while I lived in QLD last year certainly weren’t shy of having a beug or three for brekky.
3. South Australians are shady as hell
What the f is going on down there? We legitimately had to stop taking orders from South Australia for a while because there was so much credit card fraud coming out of Adelaide. It seems there is a ring of people stealing credit cards and buying a ton of bongs (lol). We spoke to some other online bong retailers who said they were being hit by the same group of people. They should have a reality show called Breaking Bongs, or something.
4. It’s not that chill of an industry to be in
Selling drug paraphernalia is a fat grey area in the law so my boss was (understandably) very paranoid of being shut down. He was actually a really stressed person and not the chilled-out stoner you might expect. All of the wholesalers and other retailers I was communicating with regularly remained super incognito too, no last names, no zoom calls etc.
Working in a bong company might sound like the makings of a Kevin Smith film, but it wasn’t as fun as I expected unfortunately. No, they did not make me punch an initiation bong on my first day. No, we did not smoke at any time during or even after office hours. It was strictly bizness. The vibe of the working environment was more like ‘The Office’ without the fun characters, than anything else. All I could hear was clicking, typing, and the sound of tape guns coming from the warehouse.
5. The pandemic was good for business
2020 was their biggest year for sales by far and my boss attributed that to COVID-19. Every time there was a lockdown in any given Aussie city, we would see a healthy spike of sales in that area promptly. What else ya doing all day?
6. Every bong is a miracle
They don’t all come out perfect. You see, each one needs to be “air tight”, so if your glass on glass bong isn’t perfectly made, it’s a straight up dud baby. There’s a lot of wastage and breakage. Every bong is tested for air tightness before it goes out and there’s a lot that don’t make the cut. Have a working glass bong? Appreciate her, love her, clean her, suck on her mouthpiece. Because she is one of a bloody kind.