To hear him described, you may think he’s “the most interesting man in the world” from those Dos Equis beer ads.
And, maybe he is: world traveler, internationally-renowned publisher and author, botanist, raconteur, lightning-rod for controversy and — to some degree — man of mystery.
What the man known as Jorge Cervantes shares with nearly every pot-smoking American is this: a life somewhat divided, out of necessity, between reality and protective myth.
This much is true. For nearly 30 years, Cervantes has been public about his love of cannabis and has been responsible for spreading the secrets of successful marijuana cultivation to thousands of growers around the globe. In 1983, he penned Indoor Marijuana Horticulture: The Marijuana Grower’s Bible, which has since spawned a cottage industry of books and instructional DVDs. For this, he became infamous to law enforcement and a hero to pot enthusiasts. But the admiration isn’t something he wears easily.
“It’s kind of weird. I look at myself as a pretty normal guy,” he says. “When people look at me as a leader, I take that part pretty seriously. People rely on information and I do my best to give good information.”
With Cervantes, it’s difficult to separate the man from the image he has created. Readers of his books and columns have been treated to stories of his Mexican upbringing and world travel. Viewers of his prolific cannabis-growing videos see a dreadlocked, beret-wearing character, hidden behind sunglasses, talking about his “home country,” Spain.
“I’m a U.S. citizen,” Cervantes states for the record. “It was kind of a joke I played to throw people off. A little game I played for a long time. But I don’t have to play any more.”
By JIM CARLSON
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