A look into the origins of the THC terms “dub” and “dubsack.” If anyone tries to sell you a dub for more than $20, you’re getting played!
Hello, dear MERRY JANE readers. We love you! Today we’re back with another lesson in cannabis semantics. We all know there’s a wide range of THC terminology, and pot slang has evolved in tandem with cannabis culture. While some turns of phrase are commonplace for longtime smokers, there are new consumers getting into grass on a daily basis, and not everyone knows the definition of, say, “FECO,” “shatter,” or “the entourage effect.”
That said, we’re not trying to patronize tried-and-true tokers — so if you consider yourself an endo expert, this article may seem a bit 101 to you. But hey, we all need a refresher now and then, and consider this post something you could send to your mother.
Anyway, we defined what a “zip” of weed was the last time we offered a lil lesson on linguistics. (In case you forgot, it means an ounce of pot.) This time, however, we’re going smaller: What exactly is a “dub” or “dubsack” of weed, and how much pot is that?
To be clear, the term “dub” does not refer to the music genre popularized by Jamaican artists, nor the electronic music genre “dubstep,” despite marijuana’s connection to both. The term “dub music,” popularized by geniuses like King Tubby, refers to a dublate, or an acetate recording disk that studios would use to test recordings prior to mastering them on vinyl.
In the context of cannabis, however, dub is a unit of measurement that derives from “dubs,” which is slang for car rims that are at least 20 inches in diameter. For reference, peep Master P’s 2005 track “I Need Dubs,” featuring the lyrics: “Cruisin with my girls even rollin with thugs / I need dubs, 22’s, 24’s.”
So a dub refers to the number 20, and in pot parlance that means a bag of weed that costs $20. Historically, 20 bucks will get you a gram of weed if purchased on the black market. Back in the day, it was common to slap a street dealer a bill with Andrew Jackson’s face on it in exchange for a small baggie that could fit a sizeable nug or two. Today, though, underground dealers and delivery services will rarely make a sale that’s less than an eighth of an ounce of weed. And in legal markets, grams can go for as low as $10 bucks these days. If you buy in bulk, the price of a gram could even be less.
A dub does not necessarily equate one gram, but rather a $20 purchase. Depending on the dealer, a dubsack could be anywhere between 0.7 grams (if they want to rip you off) and 1.5 grams (if the plug is feeling generous). Sometimes a dealer might offer a discount and say they’re doing a “ten dollar dub,” suggesting that you’d get the weed at half price.
To recap, a dub or dubsack of weed means a $20 purchase, typically from an underground pusher. Like last time, we want to add some pop culture into our lesson, so here are some rippin’ tunes where the artist references a dub or dubsack:
“We bangin’ out, that Taylor Gang / Dub to your face, baby ’til you say my name”
~ Wiz Khalifa on “Black and Yellow”
“I know that you’ve been smoking all my tumble weed / I looked into my dub sack all I seen was stems and seeds / You better get dressed, hit the door / Go to the dub spot and buy some mo’”
~ Afroman on “Afroman Is Coming to Town”
“I stay gettin green or the cheese, I’m with it / In the backstreet with the Bs that lit it / Dub sacks in the stash, plus the weed is hittin”
~ Lil B on “I’m Just Livin”
“Midi-mapping hats, yo, tryna get cake / Waitin’ on a dub cause the weed man’s late”
~ Awkwafina on “Marijuana”
“Take a turn, at this point my main concern / Where the bud’s everyday I burn so I can grub / I need at least a dub.”
~ Wiki on “3 Stories”
“And when I’m smokin’ dubs, you can’t hit my weed / Gold diggin’ bitch don’t get no love from me”
~ Tay-K on “The Plug”
“Make a visit, stop by the weed spot grab a dub / I know grams gon’ have me a grub”
~ Beanie Sigel on “Mom Praying”
“If you find a bag of weed on the floor, pick it up / And if you find it I got 10 on the dub / I’m hard to find like pickin weed out a rug”
~ Redman on “Gilla House Check”
So now you know the definition of the slang — may you smoke many dubs in peace, and don’t let anyone charge you more than $20 for a gram!