Make the most of your quarantine while stoned with these visual escapes

click to enlarge Spirited Away
Spirited Away

You shouldn't find yourself rewatching some sitcom for the thousandth time or sitting through a vacuous Hollywood blockbuster just because you're stoned and stuck inside during the age of social distancing. Yes, the couch is among the most stereotypical locations in the world of weed. It doesn't have to be, though. You can keep your brain active and engaged even if you are stoned and sitting in front of a screen all night. Here are two ways I've managed to do just that in recent weeks.

Movies by Studio Ghibli

Sometimes it's nice to just get away for a while. Not being able to leave the house makes that rather tough. Thankfully, fantasy movies exist. Specifically, those from Studio Ghibli, which late last year became available for digital purchase from services like Apple TV and Amazon Prime — ahead of a jump to streaming service HBO Max when it launches later this spring.

Best known in the United States for 2001's Spirited Away, named by the New York Times in 2017 as the second-best film of the century so far, the Ghibli collection is massive and overwhelmingly amazing. Whether taking place on a post-apocalyptic otherworld or on our own — albeit a version of our own with pigs as fighter pilots — Studio Ghibli movies are truly fantastical. They're not traditionally stoner movies in any way, but they're certainly among the most fun I've watched high. Plus, the animation is astonishingly beautiful. The flight scenes from Kiki's Delivery Service or those featuring the lush and verdant Castle in the Sky are like coming up on edibles at the museum. It's almost more high art than anime.

CrashCourse Astronomy

First of all, I'm pretty sure this was made for middle schoolers. That's fine, though, because cannabis has a way of bringing out our inner child.

Author and NASA astronomer Phil Plait hosts a 43-episode series on the CrashCourse YouTube channel, starting with the basics before working towards subjects like neutron stars and dark matter. You don't need to smoke in order to be blown away by outer space, but if you're like me, getting stoned might be the difference between watching an episode and watching an episode with your jaw on the floor for the entire time.

Plus, since it's for kids, it's fun and easy to understand no matter how little you know about science or how stoned you accidentally got off that joint of Northern Lights (a phenomenon which you can learn about in episode 10). ♦

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