“Never be anyone but yourself. Be as real as you can be. Don’t bullshit and don’t tell lies because lies you have to remember, and that is hard when you’re a stoner.”
We caught up with a little old lady named Gail from Denver Colorado, better known as Dabbing Granny (Abuelita Dabeando) to her 891k Instagram followers, to find out how her online persona went viral and how she finds the energy to travel and entertain people the way she does. Her videos and appearances are watched by people all over the world, but what does she do? Is she just an old lady that dabs? No, she is a super sweet lady who dabs and kicks ass while advocating at cannabis events around the world! She travels around the country and spends her energy hanging with online fans and heady boys. We have seen her in Las Vegas as fans overwhelm her power chair for a chance at a photo with her. They see her so much online that they get stoked right away, “People just get excited, that’s all!”, she says. Dabbing Granny does a remarkable job of supporting local glass artists and the cannabis community as a whole. She will never have grandchildren, but is every stoners granny who would claim her. She is genuinely connected to a lot of people who need that in their life, an older more experienced friend who doesn’t judge you. Granny loves to invest back into the cannabis community by buying heady rigs and merch from so many artists to give away. She is putting food on tables for local artists just like the cannabis community has done for her. Gail and her husband Kevin do not have any grandkids, but she happily embraces the Grandmother role for so many in the cannabis community. Here’s a bit of her story about becoming Dabbing Granny, allegedly!
“If I can make a difference in one person’s life each day, then that is what I’m supposed to do.”
Where did you grow up? Was cannabis around you growing up?
I grew up in a small town in the midwest, Dubuque, Iowa. It was an extreme Catholic town where there was alcohol and domestic violence but also a go to church on sunday kind of place. When I was a freshmen in HS, the older boys coming back from Vietnam had cannabis and LSD. I tried it in highschool like any rebel child of those times. I met my husband Kevin when I was 17. When you get together with someone at that age you have to expect everything to happen to that relationship. I have used marijuana my whole adult life but back then we didn’t know anything about medicinal properties.
Who taught you to dab?
I would go into the dispensary and had a high tolerance for flower. I was trying to get Kevin off the opioids and they recommended dabbing. This was in 2014 and I saw the young boys with their backwards hats and heady rigs and thought it was just a fad. They convinced me to try it and they didn’t know anything about temperature. Just heat it and scorch it. From there, I met Dabado, got a rig from them and started learning more about temperature and concentrates.
What is your infamous party trick and when did you come up with it?
I saw @nick420 in California who would Drink a beer and do a dab. I took it a step further by having a beer, a bowl, a shot and a dab. I don’t drink like that, It’s just a trick! It’s damn near gangster shit!
How did you become dabbing granny?
It started in 2015 with my first video. I did a dab out of my Dabado rig wearing a support the troops sweatshirt. I had established a non profit on a military base and was making little dab videos in my free time. Just doing dabs got old so I started Dabbing Granny and kicked it up a notch in November 2014. Someone from Fort Carson went to the military staff and showed them the videos. They fired me and banned be from the base after 25 years of setting up the non profit store and giving my life to the organization!
What is your favorite way to dab?
With a torch and thermochromic nail. Heating it, cooling it, melting it and watching it milk up. I enjoy the ritual of a dab and like taking bong snaps also.
“By the time she finally does a dab, I’ve already rolled and smoked four joints! They sit there passing around their jars of sauce talking about how it smells like oranges and by the time they finally load a bowl, I’m already high.” – Kevin
If you have seen Dabbing Granny then you have also seen her husband Kevin, who is with her each step of the way on any trip she takes. In 1995, Kevin was diagnosed with Hepatitis C. Treatment wouldn’t work and some were so terrible and they messed up his blood really bad. Kevin was at stage five liver failure and had to be placed on the Implant list. This is when Granny slowly weened him off opioids with lots of CBD and THC. They went to see his transplant team and do more tests. The head doctor, who they had good repore with, came in and she looked at Kevin and then brought the whole team in to show the progress he was making. He was getting better so fast from using only CBD and THC. He was opioid free and his liver function began to come back. 6 years later he was Hepatitis free and his liver functions are strong.
How does Kevin (your husband) put up with the Dabbing Granny sensation?
Kevin is a very real person who tells it like it is. He had some issues at the beginning of the dabbing journey. He was wondering what the heck was going on with these young men and it was hard for him to tell when he was on opioids. Now he is my team! He loves promoting cannabis for Veterans. It’s what got him off opioids and he loves Weed for Warriors.
What are the best festivals?
Hempfest Seattle. I have never been doing this to make money. We were going to these events and at Kushstock we decided to partner with Dabado to release the new products as Dabbing Granny. They called and basically had the idea for me to be a social media star. I was already advocating in the community but they said you need to start on social media and become an internet celebrity. I made a video every morning before work and give people some nice thoughts for the day. They suggested I make an instagram account and it took off from there.
“If you want to wallow in self pity, that next door won’t open.”
Do you have any crazy fan stories?
I take pictures with as many people as possible. They come to see me and I enjoy the energy. There was one time that some followers sent a video of a woman who bought an RV and wanted to live in our driveway. The woman changed clothes five times at Kushstock to meet me and then she she posted on instagram that she was close enough to smell Grannie’s curls. That was strange!
“Even in the bleak situations, you can turn shit around.”
What has been the best decade for cannabis?
Right now is the best time. It was crazy back in 1995 when kevin got his med card and things were just starting to happen. We got our card and headed to a dispensary and it was embarrassing. This was the wild, wild west where they were smoking joints in the dispensary. People were blasting BHO and setting their apartments on fire. Then in the early 2000’s CBD came along and the price was so high. Today people have more access to quality medicine than ever before.
“Sometimes I feel like we paved the way for greedy companies. It’s hard to get behind legalization and rec right now. I want everyone to have cannabis, whether it’s like a glass of wine at the end of the day or valuable medicine. But there’s people who need it so badly and Arizona can be the stepping stone to help pave the way for what we need.”
What do you advise Arizona to do differently than CO, NV, or CA?
We need places to gather like lounges. Everyone thinks Vegas is a free for all. Not true. You can’t smoke in the hotels or much of anywhere. We need to open our own cannabis casino!
What do you recommend for someone prescribed opioids or Steroids like Prednisone?
CBD. This is the best way to encourage your family. CBD topicals and a tincture. CBD is available in every state. Don’t use any artificial or man made CBD products. Try suppositories and gIve them a tiny dab. If you serve someone for first time it will keep them from doing too much and possibly having a bad experience.
What is your advice about traveling to different states with cannabis medicine?
You are taking a chance. The airport is federal grounds. This is different than being within a states jurisdiction. It’s up to you to be honest and DO NOT become belligerent with TSA or law enforcement. Stay calm and use the right words such as medicine. Don’t buck up to authority, be kind and let them know your situation. And always be nice, it goes a long way.
How do you answer the rumors about dealing with China bangers?
The first time I was paid to do a giveaway and didn’t know the difference between “Made in America” and “Assembled in America”. Now I know the difference and before I simply didn’t. The rumor was that I was so toxic from lead paint that if you hug me you would get lead poisoning. Then at AGE and Glass Vegas the artists came to me and taught me new things to look for in glass. They embraced me and said not to worry. They said, “Just keep doing what you are doing.”
There will always be haters to point out something Dabbing Granny says or does that they don’t agree with. Granny has no room for this negativity and she encourages others to shake negativity off and be the best they can be. Granny says it only matters what you and your spouse think and nothing more. Do not let others have influence over your self worth because you are uniquely special the way you are!
It’s hard to find anyone more genuine than the Dabbing Granny. She doesn’t worry about what others think and what you see is what you get! Nothing about her is a character except her gangster party trick! Take it for what it’s worth and if you don’t like it, kindly move on. Check out the Dabbing Granny instagram page for more positive affirmations and life lessons for keeping it real!
For more inspiring Interviews, click here.