What I Learned About Life Smoking Weed With The Devil In Santa Barbara

Screen Shot 2013-08-28 at 1.53.05 PM-w800-h600Sometimes life whispers to us. And sometimes it takes a punch to the throat or the Devil himself laughing in our face for us to… hold on, lemme back up here…

I had almost a decade sober… and I was bored.

The life I had left behind years earlier consisted of smoking weed and popping pills round-the-clock…

… Hydrocodone (Vicodin), Oxycontin, Xanax, Valium, Klonopin, Soma, Morphine, Demerol, Codeine, Darvocet and the occasional 3-month meth or alcohol binge that always ended badly. I coulda kept up with Ozzy.

Burglaries, drug dealing, burglarizing drug dealers, daily trips to pawn shops, crashing cars, jail, rehabs and a monthly rotation of close to 30 doctors—with an equal number of pharmacies—was the only life I knew. This was back before pharmacies were all connected to a database put in place to stop people like me from getting narcotics from more than one doctor.

I was what you would call a “doctor shopper.”

But after kicking my own ass for 15 years I got sober at age 30 stayed that way for quite a few years. Life was good. I had a nice little family, some money in the bank, and built two successful businesses.

But like I said, after a while, I got bored.

And somewhere along the way I got the bright idea that if I could just smoke a little weed—at least just once in a while—I’d no longer be bored. Plus, it would take the edge off that my new-found life as a workaholic business owner was giving me.

Now, never mind that I have one of those addictive personality thingys. Never mind that back before I cleaned up my life sucked. Never mind that for once in my life I had so much to lose.

This time it will be different. I learned my lesson right?

I’ll just stay away from the harder stuff and stick with the ganja.

I knew plenty of successful guys in my industry who smoked weed and had their shit together. Hell, it seemed like having a cute little medical marijuana card came with the job description of being an internet marketer.

Even though they all smoked these dudes were getting a ton of shit done and making good money, and weren’t going off the deep end snorting coke off strippers, wrecking cars and robbing pharmacies.

Now, back when I used to smoke we didn’t have these little medical marijuana cards. And I was fascinated that now you could just go to a doctor and say you have anxiety, A.D.D., or that your big toe’s been bothering ya and you could get a card that said it was OK for you to smoke weed.

Hell, I have anxiety. And I’ve even been clinically diagnosed with A.D.D… so I got that going for me. And come to think of it, sometimes my big toe does bother me a little.

I can smoke weed and not have to feel like a criminal. I’ll be legit.

I’ll just stay away from the hard stuff. No pills, powders, alcohol, or pharmaceuticals for me thank you. Just Mother Natures beautiful little gift to all those who need to chill the fuck out once in awhile—marijuana.

So I went down to one of those doctors who issue the cards, got myself a script and picked up about $500 worth of weed (I got like different six kinds), a brand new bong, a neat-looking little pipe and about 5 lighters. I’ve never done anything by half. If I’m gonna get a little weed, I might as well get a little fucking weed ya know?

And what do you do when you start smoking weed again after such a long hiatus?

You go on a road trip dammit!

I got my weed, my paraphernalia, a full tank of gas and I’m ready to go!

But there was only one little problem with this whole thing. My wife at the time wasn’t digging this whole “I’m gonna start smoking weed again” thing. In fact she was flat-out against it.

She’d never seen me do any drugs, and for years she’d been listening to the horror stories about what a gnarly drug addict I’d been in my 20s.

So we go on this road trip and she’s a little bit (I mean a lot) pissed.

We stop and get a room in Santa Barbara. I decided it was time. With the kids asleep and the wife sitting on the couch just steaming, I go out on the balcony and fire up some bong rips. I was never was a one bong rip man. I need at least 5 or 6 just to get things off the ground.

I sold weed from like age 18 to 24 and smoked the stuff all-day-every-day. So 5 or 6 rips ain’t nothing for me.

However, since I hadn’t smoked in years I had the tolerance of a pre-pubecent Nancy Regan.

Plus the weed I picked up from the dispensary was about 10 times as strong as the shit I used to smoke back in the day that came smuggled up by the ton in bricks from Mexico.

After about the 5th or 6th bong rip I didn’t feel stoned at all. It felt more like I was having a full-blown bad acid trip. It was intense. I may as well have been smoking fucking PCP.

Now, even if my wife had been totally cool with me smoking I still would have been having a fucking panic attack. I just plain-out had too much THC in my system for someone with no tolerance built-up.

The world could have been nothing but sunshine and blow jobs and I still would have been freaking the fuck out.

But with the wife all bent outta shape (and rightfully so), and my shame screaming at me for having thrown away all those good years of sobriety, it fucking suuuuuuucked.

I just wanted to lie down. So I headed for the bedroom and walked right past her sitting there on the couch and I wasn’t even able to look at her. I was too scared!

When I got in the bedroom I turned the light off and got in bed.

Blazed out of my mind (and not in a good way) the guilt, fear and shame ate away at me like vultures.

After about an hour or so of what I can best describe as living fucking hell—and with the wife still out on the couch in the little family room area—I got up to pee.

I left the lights off; turning them on sounded way too intense. In fact peeing sounded pretty intense too, but I’d done it at least 138,000 times in my life and was pretty sure I’d live.

It was dark in the bathroom, but there was a little light creeping in from the alarm clock that was in the bedroom—just enough so I could see the toilet and catch a glimpse of my silhouette in the mirror.

I looked in the mirror and right there before my very eyes I transformed into fucking Satan. The guy the preachers are always warning about. Lucifer. CEO of Hell. Lord of Darkness and all things bad.

I had turned into the fucking devil.

I grew horns, my chin and goatee become pointy, my forehead got all big, I grew a fucking cape, flames came outta my asshole… well, there were flames behind me, not sure where they came from actually, but my asshole seemed like a logical place… the whole fucking deal.

I wasn’t all red like in the comics. I was black—not Samuel Jackson black, but black like charcoal or tar or something.

And the flames behind me were dark… more of a deep red mixed with black instead of orange. The whole bathroom looked hot and emanated some kind of dark light… probably from the flames that were shooting outta my butt.

In the mirror, the Satan me, started laughing like crazy. Like “Ha ha ha, I got you now motherfucker! Ha ha ha.” All sinister-like.

I’d fucked up and I knew it.

After about a minute I turned back into regular ol’ Chris in the mirror. Just a dark silhouette of a middle-aged guy freaked out and needing to go pee.

So I peed and got back into bed scared shitless. Just-saw-the-Devil kinda scared shitless.

After spending a few minutes completely wigged-out my wife came into the bedroom, looked at me laying there face down moaning and whimpering and goes “What’s wrong with you?”

“I just saw the devil”

Being a lifelong devout Christian, she says “You need to go to church!

Now, I wanna make it clear here that I am neither religious nor against marijuana.

This post ain’t about that.

It’s about signs.

Life talks to us and lets us know when were off course.

It may be a gut feeling, a strange coincidence, our conscience saying “Don’t do it man” or visions of Lucifer, Michael Myers or Puff the Magic Dragon.

If we’re tuned in and open enough to hear the whispers and take heed, then we can usually stay on a pretty good path.

But if we ain’t tuned into ourselves, or are being selfish or stuck in non-stop ego, well, sometimes it may take a knuckle sandwich (or 50 of them) to get us back on course.

To me, that devil in the mirror was my addiction. Was it just an hallucination from the weed? Probably. But a pretty damn ironic one.

The whole time I was planning my little relapse I knew in my gut that there was no way in hell I should be doing this.

But I didn’t listen. So my conscience came to life in the purest form of fear possible.

And it should’ve been a clear sign that I got no business smoking weed. I’ve got an addictive personality, had a lot going for me, and, while lots of people can smoke weed and not have any problems from it—possibly even benefit from it—I am not one of them.

And the sinister laugh had a such an “I got you now” evil-twisted-vibe to it that even while it was happening I knew that’s exactly what it meant—”I got you now mother fucker!”

I’d opened the door back on my addiction and shit’s about to get real.

‘Cuz for me, glorious thoughts of smoking a joint and chilling out to some Bob Marley after a hard day’s work is never the extent of it… in my life, it’s always ended up taking me to dark places. I just have that addictive wiring.

So what did I do the next day?

I smoked some more fucking weed, that’s what I did.

But I knew in my gut that I was heading to a bad place.

for postsAnd I eventually ended there. Bad Place California. I’m just grateful I made my way back.

And what did I learn from all this?

Well, actually not a whole lot at the time.

I had the choice: listen to what life—my soul—was telling me… or don’t, and wait until it knocks me over the head with hammer a few times before I get the point.

Which is what I did. I waited. Until those blows hurt enough that I came crawling back on my knees with bloody lumps all over my head.

Eventually I ended up losing everything but I did make my way back

Here’s a few posts that go more in-depth on what happened and the journey back:

9 Ways to Get Out of a Slump and Make The Comeback of Your Life…. and About Chris McCombs.net… and 17 Ways To Rise Above

Fortunately our gut doesn’t just talk to us about the bad shit. If we listen close enough, it talks to us about everything….

… Who we should get to know, what we should do for a living, where we should go, what calls we should make, what activities we should take up, what books we should read, what path we should take, and… well… everything.

In my Stranger Than Pulp Fiction Post, I give some pretty crazy examples of serendipitous stuff that’s happened to me when I’ve been open and willing enough to hear life when it whispers, and other times when it had to scream at me.

Hopefully you’re listening for the whispers instead of waiting for the screams and knuckle sandwiches.

If you’d like to get more posts like this one, subscribe here and I’ll be sure to send you the new posts as I write ‘em…

And if you enjoyed this post, I’d be stone cold honored if you would push some of those social media sharing buttons and share it with your friends… you may lose a few of them though. Just a heads up.

Talk soon,

Big Chris

Written by Chris McCombs

Just put your primary email in here and I’ll be sure to hook you up ( I hate spam too so I promise to keep it private and never share it with anyone) … I’ll see you on the other side


  1. Good stuff Chris.

    • Chris McCombs Chris McCombs says:

      thanks Randy!

      • This blog is the only one that I’ve read where I can actually enjoy. This is real shit bro and everything I’ve read so far has made me take a step back and think, whether it be about life itself or on a more personal level. Thanks Chris for everything. I will be reading everyday.

      • I love this post , it relates to me a lot . I stopped smoking weed because it made me feel closer to Satan than ever and it made me psychotic . so now I stopped ALL drugs including alcohol and trying to be a better person . I know I’m facing some consequences right now ( the psychotosis and some lung problems , possibly cancer from tobacco ) but at least God knows I stopped and I’m AT LEAST trying to be a good guy . I love this post and I’m glad you stopped too !

  2. Chris,

    I’m a relatively new reader to your blog ad I’ve got to say that it’s pretty darn good. This post is a microcosm of your whole damn site.

    You post from the heart and aren’t afraid to talk about situations that turn to shit, especially when they involve yourself. That is so damn authentic it’s untrue.

    i read a few blogs and try to aspire to the good points I pick up. Then I slip and act like a turkey – nothing major but enough to throw me off course – and I feel that I’ve failed the perfect, holier-than-thou life coaches.

    You are different. I don’t want this to be a slurp fest but I can relate to you as you’re someone who talks about their own fuck ups, frailties and their attempts to just do better, a little each day.

    Thanks for this post, your blog and your honesty. They’re all an inspiration.

    Be cool,


    • Chris McCombs Chris McCombs says:

      hey thanks Justin

      SLURP FEST – ha ha man, that’s funny

      Yeah we all slip here and there

      such a a freedom in being open about it all

  3. Chris, I appreciate your willingness to go to the dark places, turn on a spot light, and say look at this shit…it is fucked up but it is part of the ride.
    Chris your journey may be seen as a how to or it may be seen as a cautionary tale…but I am so glad you are willing to share.

  4. I really like how you’re not afraid to share with the whole fucking world all the fuck ups you’ve ever had in your life. I think it really takes a seriously hardass individual to admit their mistakes. I see so many people going through life making up stories about how great they are, or making excuses as to their fuck ups weren’t totally their fault and someone else made them do it, or how they’re on the track to being awesome and by god, they “deserve” good things so it will come as long as they ignore their faults. But you own that shit, man. Good for you. One of the defining aspects of being a “human”, you know, not an infallible deity, is that we aren’t perfect, we never will be perfect and we screw up. Really, it’s ok to screw up but its better to learn from it so you can grow and develop. I also have seen lots of people really do well while smoking. But you need to have discipline to make that work. I also see a lot of people say, “It’s only weed. IT’s a plant, and it’s almost legal, it’s less harmful than alcohol, so I can do it whenever I want”. then they smoke all day, and their whole life is about getting high. That’s not good either!

    • Chris McCombs Chris McCombs says:

      Hey Blake, yeah some people do great with weed, i don’t, I end up smoking ALL DAY and then it’s not enough and I want some fucking opiods and benzos ya know what I’m saying?

      and thanks for the kind words man

      I’ve found great freedom in just being open with this shit

      trying to act like I got all my shit together all the time is a stressful gig, at least in my experience

  5. You hit the nail on the head with this one Chris. I can relate to this completely. You write about real life shit that a lot of people can relate too. I have an experience almost similar to the one you explain here and I believe it saved me some serious heartache and possible jail time by listening and not turning my back on the inner voice telling me to get my shit together!

  6. Open. Honest. Raw. Real. I don’t know your politics – DON’T WANNA! But Congress, this country, could use a few of you in D.C.

    Thanks for sharing.

  7. Hey Chris,

    Deep, Dark, Enlightening and Inspiring.

    Thanks for sharing :-)

  8. You’d look good with horns…. But it’s not how ya look, its how ya feel. Thanks for sharing Chris!

  9. VincenzoMe says:

    Hi Chris.

    Great story you have there my friend.
    I think also If you would smoke that weed in other circumstances you would feel better. You were probably scared, becouse your wife did not want you to smoke and she was sitting on the couch. So what I’am trying to say is that you had a bad state of mind. If you would smoke it somewhere more comfortable you would feel better. 😉
    Weed sopuse to make you feelings more sensitive. Like when you smoke and after you have a nice meal you feel that the food taste better.
    Or you could just bake some cookies and have them with your wife. 😉

    I bet it did gave you a lesson and a different of point of view on the world and the world arround you.
    Reality is sometimes tough. Just stay focus and you create your own reality.

    Like your stories keep writing them like a boss.

    All the best brother

  10. Great story Chris. Appreciate you sharing this with me. I also have an additive personality with certain things and can relate to the battles that gone on in your brain when fighting off that temptation. One side is telling you that one time will not hurt and the other side is saying don’t do it. That’s when a good work out will get your mind straight. Thanks and take care.

  11. Dude! Awesome post. This will help many people stay sober. I have had those fantasies of smoking again but I am wired like you. Your path and you word shared about it in this post helped me and remind me that I am not like most people and can’t get away with it. Thanks.

    • Chris McCombs Chris McCombs says:

      yeah Ian, nothing against weed but man, if you got an additive personality, best to stay clear, ESPECIALLY if you have a fondness of the heavier things

      thanks man!

  12. I don’t believe in coincidences anymore bro.

    It’s my 1st time ever visiting your blog, this post stuck out to me, I clicked and it was exactly what I needed to hear at exactly the right time.

    Your honesty and openness have not only motivated me on a personal level, but have really helped me piece together what I should be doing to continue moving my business forward.

    You’ve created another life-long fan/reader.

    I really appreciate your message and what you’re doing man.

    I can’t wait to read more from you.

  13. – hows it goin Chris… It could be many reasons for this happening, when I read you was in SANTA Barbara instantly I seen where this was going… That’s a demonic Wicca home, the word SANTA is another word for SATAN, both sharing the same words in it.. Santa Clause? don’t celebrate Christmas it’s a lucifer holiday the bible warns us about this in revelation 11:7-10 … Herb was created by GOD for medical & sacrament reasons, The holy herb opens your mind to the reality of the devils work & not to be confused into his gateway… REMEMBER if lucifer plan is to go against GODS law, us knowing that the government are puppets of lucifer & made marijauna illegal, shows the devils hatred on this holy herb created by god for our healings

  14. Good shit…

  15. Chris turn your life over to Jesus Christ, repent and be baptized.

    Smoking weed opens spiritual doorways that allow Satan certain access over us.

    I have and am still dealing with the struggle but im trying to get back up and please the Lord.

    Jesus is the Way brother.

  16. After about a couple tries smoking weed and having bad experiences i’ve always thought of fighting a war against the devil, and i’ll explain what i mean after a bit of background info.

    I am 22 now and i was luckily never into drugs but decided to try weed–and weed only–in high school. At first the high was just like a buzz, nothing major and no bad experiences. In college i started smoking more whenever someone offered it, which was about every other week or so, so i wasn’t smoking a lot; just frequently in that sense.

    I started having bad highs to where i would have these fights in my head with the devil. At other times i would have extreme dejavu to the point where i thought i could infer what someone was going to do and or say. Whenever i spoke of the devil in my mind his name would roll off my tongue as if it were being emphasized or something. Whenever i would tell myself the high won’t control me my body started working twice or three times faster as if to fall under his control from fatigue.

    I gave it up for awhile but then about a year later met a really beautiful girl whom was always high. She would smoke 3 times a day and one of her favorite hobbies was writing lyrics from her favorite songs. It was during this time that i decided to smoke with her a couple times only to return fighting in my head with the devil except something else happened. During one of our sessions i took a look at her scribbles, and she looked at me with pity or something, she looked so innocent and trapped, i guess that would be the best way to describe her look. In her lyrics she talked about being trapped and wanting to be free and what not from the devil, it was as if she were telling me the devil had her trapped and i was to free her. However, i didn’t want to seem crazy to her for expressing something of that sort so i let it be. In addition to these fights i felt like the devil was showing me his powers of a predicted outcome; like he knew what was going to happen to me through the dejavu highs.

    I am currently sober from weed, i sometimes drink alcohol though but not to the point of getting drunk. I guess just to get a big of liquid courage and what not cus i’m a bit of a shy guy with the ladies. The one thing that always sticks to my mind was whether other people ever has similar experiences with “fighting the devil” when high. Also i don’t know if leaving her to be was the right choice, i don’t talk to her much anymore, but i’m always left wondering if i should’ve tried to help her although maybe that was just my instinct and she really didn’t need help.

    If anyone still smokes weed, can you just in your mind or silently talk about the devil to yourself (just to see if his name rolls of your tongue as well or if you get a bad feeling from doing so). I wonder if it’s just me. Anyways thanks for hearing me out, and i look forward to anyone’s response :) Have a good day!

  17. God is glorious. Don’t listen to the whispers or the screams brother, they are both from the devil. Weed is an intoxicant and forbidden along with alcohol and pretty much every other intoxicating drug including the tobacco drug. It is for a reason; they give you too much ego. What you do need to listen to is the sound of a human being brother. The sound of a human being reading out the words of God. Reading out the Quran.

  18. Really enjoyed this post. Makes me firm in my resolve not to slip up. I know that darkness and “the nonsense” quite well that goes with getting addicted to weed and the trying to quit and then relapsing and it taking another so many years to get back on track. I am glad you posted about the boredom with reality. I will be ever mindful that this is something I need to be aware of – that I need to sit with boredom at times or wanting things to seem more interesting or intense when they don’t really need to be. Iinteresting and intense will come on it’s own or there are other things to do to make reality more interesting. Been reading a lot of spiritual material lately about the effects of recreational drug use on subtle energy and emotional bodies and the like, and your experience makes a lot of sense to me right now – those lower astral realms I am trying to claw my way out the residue of past use of before it’s too late. Exhausting at times but worth it!

  19. I thoroughly enjoyed your post and really needed to read it today. I’ve been clean/sober for 114 days for the first time in 20 years after coming off of a nice bout with pills, alcohol, and weed. I’ve had a similar past and am at a good place with family, job, house, yadayada. I’ve really been getting bored and feel like life was better with the pot and have been playing around with the idea of getting my weed card again but have cancelled each time I make the appointment. Your post gave me courage and insight to keep going with my sobriety and to listen to that little voice saying “Dude, don’t do it.” Think I need to pick up the old skateboard or go on a sober road trip or something to get some fun back. Cheers and thanks for the help.

    • Chris McCombs Chris McCombs says:

      right on Adam. Yeah man, I got nothing against weed, love it, think it’s great, but if you’re an addict–especially if you like to do the harder stuff like pills and booze–definitely stay away from the herb. I do miss it sometimes, but the price of the downhill slope it can put an addict on ain’t worth it. Thanks for your words

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