Comedian Jessimae Peluso has had cannabis filling her lungs long before she took the stand-up stage at age 19. She actually got into the “weed game” by accident while in the back of a Geo Tracker in high school, but marijuana ended up being a running theme in her life. Throughout her career on shows like MTV’s Girl Code, The Joe Rogan Experience, Netflix’s Tattoo Redo, and on her own Sharp Tongue Podcast, Peluso is always advocating and always stoning.
She recently entered the world of microdosing psilocybin and credits it for helping her deal with grief and recognizing and releasing past trauma. It’s been an epiphany-filled journey for Peluso, and one she vows to delve further into in order to work on herself. Before heading cross-country on her “Gyrl Tour” with fellow comedian (and ex-castmate on Girl Code) Carly Aquilino, Peluso talked with us about her BFF MJ, her intentions of slowing down with the help of microdosing, and how she learned to breathe again thanks to a little magic mushroom.
High Times: Let’s start at the beginning. When did you pop your Mary cherry?
Jessimae Peluso: The first time I remember smoking weed, I was a freshman in high school and it was a “second-hand scenario” because I was in the back of a Geo Tracker with about 32 people. I’m not sure if that’s the exact number or a result of being second-hand high and my brain’s inability to count, but one of the people weighed north of 250 pounds and I was inside of him somehow. I was engulfed in his lovely mass. That was the first experience I ever had with weed. In a car, filled with friends, clearly stoned, and driving the streets of upstate New York listening to The Notorious B.I.G’s Ready to Die. It was amazing and I didn’t even put a blunt to my lips. I just felt something that made me want to go further. I still had my hymen and those days were great! A hymen and a blunt? I’d kill for that and I’m almost 40!
It’s sometimes still mind-blowing that weed is everywhere and I got grounded by my parents for it.
I experienced those things back in New York where you are like, oh, this is illegal. But then you take a hit and you’re like, let’s talk about legality of the soul. And it’s still a topic that’s divided only by people who haven’t realized the medicinal value of the plant. They seem to be the ones who make the biggest judgements about it. I’ve realized its value as a medicine in my healing with letting go of trauma and being able to process trauma and grief. It’s been an amazing tool for me.
The irony is that the people screaming the loudest could probably benefit from it.
Yes! There’s plenty of science now! We know what it’s good for and we know that it’s being used to help people with PTSD. I mean, men and women from the military who are sent home with terrible PTSD are being administered marijuana as a medicinal implementation into their healing. It’s so interesting. Look at alcohol and what it does to people, it’s an outward expression. There’s a lot of anger that can come out and you can express yourself in a way that can be regretful the next day. I mean, you’re calling exes! You’re just belligerent! On weed, I can’t lift my fingertips to press send on a text that is literally all t’s. Just one big row, TTTTTTTTTTT. Alcohol takes, and medicines like marijuana and psilocybin give. They even teach you to give because of how insightful they are. I’ve had some of the most life-changing epiphanies on a blunt. Oh my god, the irony of it all.
Celebrity strains are all the rage so I know you’ve tried at least one. Name drop.
I have! A friend of mine, Jaleel White, and one of the greatest companies in California, 710 Labs, did a collaboration called, Its PurpL. Jaleel’s an amazing human, a really great friend, and if you know, you know. I mean, it’s fucking Family Matters. Hello? I’m a supportive friend regardless, but I gotta tell you, the weed is legit. He sent me a welcome gift when he launched his product and it came with a fucking cast iron waffle maker and infused syrup!
No part of me hated that story. Shout out to Stefan. Now tell me the story about how you got into mushrooms. It was pretty recent, right?
Oh, let me tell you, I did mushrooms in high school and they were the shitake! No, it wasn’t that long ago. Microdosing psilocybin was introduced to me through the process of grief. I dabbled a little after my dad passed away, and then shortly after, my mom died and I microdosed almost daily after that. It was almost like that door that Rose was greedy with in the movie Titanic. She had enough room for Jack! Rose was a greedy bitch, but shrooms offered me the door. Shrooms were like, you’re drowning in this cold ass water, just come on out of the water for a minute and catch your breath. When it comes to microdosing, it’s such a gentle introduction into what psilocybin can offer. From my experience, I entered low and slow. I always go low and slow with anything in my life now. I realize the value of just slowing down and letting things inform me. That’s the thing about psilocybin, it’s a very informative medicine, especially if you let yourself be introduced to it on a microdosing level.
Did you take a tour guide with you on your first walk with psilocybin?
My friend Jackie, who is like one of my soul sisters, has been somewhat of a psychedelic guide for me in helping introduce me into that world and to enter it with caution while being mindful. I’ve been really fortunate to be introduced by people who have a lot of experience and understand its value as an evolutionary tool for an individual. I’ve also been mindful of its implementation into my life and done a lot of research because I’m a fucking Virgo and I like to know things. I like to know what I’m putting in my body because if it’s a dick I’m like, ok. But a mushroom? Wait a minute now!
Guilty. And we’re light years away from shrooms dipped in ranch in high school. What were we even doing?
I feel like it’s a great space to get into after your brain is developed and you’re an adult. Being experimental with something that can provide a real holistic and honest experience, that would add to your life. With psilocybin, your feet are on the ground. You’re just allowing your mind to pixelate a little. You’re allowing your mind to unravel those tethered vines that are ancestral, traumatic, and consequential. We have such a hold on ourselves. We’re functioning from a place of survival and most of us have a story that has a traumatic experience or event that we haven’t fully healed from. Although we’re able to navigate life beyond that, it doesn’t mean that the effects of it haven’t been detrimental. Emotional stress causes physical stress in our bodies, and mushrooms are the key to healing from our emotional Pandora’s box. That’s what I truly believe, and that’s just from a microdosing experience. I haven’t gone fully into the void, but I am for my 40th birthday this year. I wanted to make it special and be with certain people who have helped me through the hardest times of my life. I got a whole bunch of shrooms, I got a whole bunch of avocados, and I got a whole bunch of teddy bears. We’re hoping for the best.
Wait, is that a thing to have avocados and teddy bears?
Bitch, I don’t know! But they’re all mushy and soft and that’s what I need to hold on to! I need healthy fats! This is my journey!
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