New Obama Biography Chronicles His Marijuana Smoking

Friday, 25 May 2012 02:13 PM

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A soon-to-be released biography of President Barack Obama gives plenty of detail about his marijuana smoking days in high school.

The book is titled “Barack Obama: The Story” and written by acclaimed biographer David Maraniss. The book fills in the particulars for a story that is already known. In his 1995 memoir “Dreams of My Father,” Obama admitted to smoking pot everywhere from a “white classmate’s sparkling new van,” to “the dorm room of some brother,” to “the beach with a couple of Hawaiian kids,” ABC News reports.

As for the Maraniss book, it says Obama and his pot-smoking high school buddies called themselves the “the Choom Gang.” Choom was slang for smoking marijuana.

Whatever his deficiencies making policy in the White House, “as a member of the Choom Gang, Barry Obama was known for starting a few pot-smoking trends,” Maraniss writes.

One was total absorption, or TA. “TA was the opposite of Bill Clinton’s claim that as a Rhodes Scholar at Oxford he smoked dope but never inhaled,” Maraniss writes. If you exhaled early as part of the Choom Gang, “you were assessed a penalty and your turn was skipped the next time the joint came around.”

Another Obama idea was roof hits. “When they were chooming in a car, all the windows had to be rolled up so no smoke blew out and went to waste,” Maraniss writes. “When the pot was gone, they tilted their heads back and sucked in the last bit of smoke from the ceiling.”

Obama also established the concept of interceptions. “When a joint was making the rounds, he often elbowed his way in, out of turn, shouted ‘Intercepted,’ and took an extra hit,” Maraniss writes.

He says Obama and his friends didn’t fit the stereotype of many high school potheads – slackers who do little outside of smoking.

“In fact, most members of the Choom Gang were decent students and athletes who went on to successful and productive lawyers, writers and businessmen,” Maraniss writes.

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