By Des Humprhey
Last night, 15 June 2012, I went to Ammanford to see one of my all-time heroes, Mr Howard Marks aka Mr Nice, an internationally renowned speaker, author, and expert on cannabis who has fully endorsed NORML UK and given his full support.
Howard is the author of several books including ‘Mr Nice’, which has been translated into several languages and turned into a major feature film. A former cannabis smuggler who served time in US prisons, Howard Marks has been at the forefront of drug reform campaigning for many years.
Me and the misses, Christine, arrived nice and early to get a bite to eat and meet up with some people to share some much needed medication. I must mention a man who goes by the name of Steve for the way me and the wife were treated and looked after. He was a true gent and friend. Thank you Steve J! Bellies full and well medicated, we took our seats.
I have seen Howard in many shows performing many different routines so was wondering which one he was going to perform tonight. With about 200 people in the audience, whose ages ranged from 18 to 70, I was hoping it would be a good night. I could feel the vibe coming from them, they were excited and probably medicated. The lights dimmed, music started, and then a documentary about Howard in his younger days, his arrest, and all the good things he has done for us cannabis consumers. The audience were loving his stories about importing tonnes of cannabis resin around the world. I noticed some friends had turned up from my part of the wood when my mobile went off, just like it did at the Cardiff Global Cannabis March. It was my mate Mark who was on the guest list and they were not letting him in as his name was not down. “Des, I’m stuck outside! Help me!” So on the mobile I go: “Howard, mate, Mark is stuck outside they won’t let him in. They say his name is not on the list.” Mr Nice replied, “Yes it is, I remember doing it. Leave it to me, Des.” Within two minutes here comes Mark with a massive grin on his face. So the show can now begin.
The show was a great success and totally different to the other shows I have seen him do. A lot more material has been added, plus Howard had the whole audience in stitches for most of the show. When half time was due, I knew exactly where I was going and what I was going to do! With a bigger grin I settled in for some more entertainment and there was plenty of that. The show finished with an open question and answer session with no holds barred.
For anyone wanting to go see Howard Marks live, you can find the latest dates on his website. You will not be disappointed!
The above portrait of Howard Marks is by Michael Shurman.