Happy 420.  What does this mean?  The term 420 (pronounced four twenty, not four hundred and twenty) originated at San Rafael High School in California in the 1970s, among a group of marijuana smoking teens who called themselves “The Waldos.” The term 420 was shorthand code for the time of day the group would meet to smoke cannabis, and the term spread among members of an entire generation.

Today, 420 has become a universal symbol for the use and appreciation of marijuana and 4:20 p.m. has become a worldwide “burn time.” Each year on April 20th (4/20), Happy 420 events are held on this unofficial “holiday” known as National Weed Day.

For more on the 420 story, go here to the Huffington Post.

The Waldos do have proof, however, that they used the term in the early ’70s in the form of an old 420 flag and numerous letters with 420 references and early ’70s post marks. They also have a story. It goes like this: One day in the Fall of 1971 – harvest time – the Waldos got word of a Coast Guard service member who could no longer tend his plot of marijuana plants near the Point Reyes Peninsula Coast Guard station. A treasure map in hand, the Waldos decided to pluck some of this free bud. The Waldos were all athletes and agreed to meet at the statue of Louis Pasteur outside the school at 4:20, after practice, to begin the hunt. “We would remind each other in the hallways we were supposed to meet up at 4:20. It originally started out 4:20-Louis and we eventually dropped the Louis,” Waldo Steve tells the Huffington Post.

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