The History of 710: The Dab Holiday
Published on 7/4/22
Perhaps you remember the episode of The Simpsons where they lampooned the "holiday" industry by creating the fictional and ridiculous "Love Day." Sometimes it is easy to be cynical about holidays that seem entirely designed to make money. However, like all other things cannabis, the creation of a new holiday has come entirely from creativity. We all know that April 20th is the day we celebrate marijuana, but just as cannabis has evolved, so has the celebration of this lovely plant. A new holiday, 710, has come onto the scene. What is the significance of 710? And how do you celebrate the day so that you have a happy 710?
The term "420", like so many other things in cannabis lore, is not subject to an agreement about its origins. The most common story is that 420 is a police callsign related to marijuana incidents. It may also apply to a group of stoners who decided to light up daily at 4:20 in the afternoon. Finally, it may even be a reference to a Bob Dylan song since the numbers in the song multiplied together equal 420.
Luckily, there is no such ambiguity regarding 710 because the answer behind the 710 meaning is quite simple: 710 upside down reads "OIL." Oil 710 refers to hash oil, also known as concentrate, wax, shatter, and many other names. While 420 dates back decades, the history of 710 is fairly brief since it only came onto the scene relatively recently. It was first celebrated in 2011, possibly by rapper TaskRok, known for his concentrate-themed songs like "Boil that Oil." TaskRok and his friends concluded that 420 was getting stale, necessitating switching it up. So the answer to "why is 710 dab day?" may be that regular cannabis is simply passe, and it is time for fresh blood on the pot holiday scene.
Making it Stick
Like many other things in 2011, a 710 oil holiday could not have made it big without getting traction on social media. This was just one year before Kony 2012, after all, and slacktivism was in vogue. When TaskRok put out an album called "The Movement," it included a call to action to make it a new holiday for potheads. It succeeded tremendously: suddenly, there was a 710 holiday but also a 710 type of wax, a 710 society, and even a 710 club meant to compete for the very best hash oil.
However, one thing that defined the 710 community was a lack of ownership over the holiday. This is, after all, a culture with pretty defined rules, meaning it is important to get along. Rather than commercializing 710 to the degree that 420 has been, there are few to no t-shirts and bongs proclaiming the greatness of 710. Instead, it has remained a niche holiday that some stoners still have never heard about. Despite its spread on social media, word of mouth remained the most vital driver of 710, and person-to-person contact meant that it spread organically.
420 and 710
It is tempting to say that 710 is no different than 420, and they are both just days where you get baked from start to finish. Yet this is not entirely the story. Why is 710 the new 420? For starters, dabbing is more intensive than a standard smoke. You can wake and bake with a dab rig, but it is not recommended, especially for a beginner. Since concentrates hit much harder and kick in much faster, there are no "warm-up" events like there are for 420. Additionally, since concentrates cannot be dosed as efficiently as a joint and a lighter, you need to carefully plan the day's events, including when and where the smoking session occurs.
Additionally, unlike 420, 710 is not really a celebration of cannabis diversity. While 420 means joints, bowls, bongs, and edibles, 710 is more narrowly focused on hash oil. That requires stocking up on concentrates to ensure you have enough but also taking a break when you need to because there is no stepping down the same way as events on 420. Finally, unlike 420, 710 is not nearly as celebrated in cannabis culture, and your friends might not take the day off work. Since it is fairly close to the 4th of July, you might not be able to take work off yourself - you need to plan well ahead if you want to enjoy the day.
The Future of 710
Given the relatively low-key nature of 710, it remains to be seen whether the holiday will pick up into the stoner mainstream. Concentrates remain less popular overall compared to bud, partially due to their immense power and partly due to the accessories needed to enjoy them. However, this is not to say that they are unpopular, and any dispensary will stock them. As legal cannabis continues to pick up steam, the celebration of marijuana in all its forms will also accelerate, meaning more attention on concentrates and 710. You may soon find that dispensaries offer great deals come the second week of July for all the concentrate you can smoke.
Do you celebrate 710 by taking huge dabs? How have you found that dabs are different from standard cannabis flower? Let us know in the comments below!