Know Yer Budtender – Christopher Harris Jr., Golden Leaf

Budtender - Christopher Harris Jr., Golden Leaf
Budtender - Christopher Harris Jr., Golden Leaf

Name/Age: Christopher Harris Jr., 27

How long have you been in Steamboat and how’d you end up here?

I’ve been in Steamboat for about 22 years. I moved here with my mom, dad and brother, from Houston, Texas. We moved here for the mountain life; my parents thought Steamboat was a better place to raise their kids. 

How’d you get into budtending?

I love cannabis. I started budtending because it just made sense. I was 23, using cannabis regularly, and I always wanted to work in the industry. A couple of friends started working here and convinced me to get my MED badge and apply. It was the obvious choice for me. 

What do you like about it?

I like interacting with everyone and openly talking about cannabis. I regularly get to tell people, “Have a good day, go get high”, stuff like that. Most of my life, cannabis has been so hush, hush, and now I talk about my experiences with it and get paid for it, it’s great. 

What’s the hardest part? 

The hardest part is putting labels on every single product. In all seriousness. I hate all the labels. There is a lot of waste that occurs in every product in this industry. The labels seem just a further means of waste and it’s completely unnecessary. There’s literally no point in labeling our products at every purchase. It’s a waste of resources and time on everyone’s behalf. The companies that make all the labels probably don’t mind, though. Other than that, the hardest part is when someone “steps over the line” in a sale and I have to cancel it. I like to say, “people always leave with a smile on their face, unless they can’t buy cannabis.” 

Is there much a difference between locals and out-of-state customers?

I don’t notice a big difference, personally. What even is a local anymore? I’ve lived here 22 years and I can’t answer that. I find plenty of people from out of state that have a local vibe. Generally, though, most people from in state do have an idea of what they want and the process is pretty simple; most of the time they’re just in and out. Whereas out-of-state customers tend to ask more questions. But, honestly, it goes both ways. Really what it comes down to is how much experience with cannabis they have. Even experienced users have questions at times. 

What do you love about Golden Leaf?

I enjoy the environment, the atmosphere. It’s very rare that somebody comes in with a bad attitude here. Everyone is usually in a good mood, and when I’m engaging with people who are just happy to be in the store, it boosts my mood as well. I’ve made friends over the years working here, whether they’re coworkers or customers. It feels like a family, like a home, and I feel treated as such here. The relationships with everyone involved is what I love most. A workplace is only as good as the people in it.  

Any favorite pastimes when not working? 

These days I spend a lot of time with my family. I also like to play guitar; I’m not the best at it but it’s fun. I like to snowboard, but I haven’t had a pass in the past couple years. Video games are fun, too. If I had a true “hobby” I would say it revolves around crypto currency. I like Dogecoin, and Bitcoin, of course. I keep up to date with a lot of stuff happening in the crypto world and I’m definitely passionate about it. The only thing I’m more passionate about is my family.