Being a Considerate Connoisseur

I didn’t even realize that there’s this controversy as to whether or not you should suck a single bong hit through the bowl once it’s cached (completely combusted).

As usual, I have definite opinions about this one, and you should too.

First, let’s make sure that were talking apples to apples … or single hits to single hits.

You put enough weed in the bong that one person can light it and finish in one slow and complete inhale of the smoke. We aren’t referring to a big bowl (filled with herb) with a metal screen covering the bottom of the bowl, and we aren’t dealing with a packed, big “party” bowl that will be passed around.

You have a simple, conical-shaped bowl. If bigger than a one-hit size, it still has a small hole at the bottom. You want to plug the hole with enough weed, that at the end of one inhalation, the residue ash gets sucked through the hole, down the stem, and into the water.

This should all happen as you “carb” the hit … you either take your thumb (or finger) of the hole in the back of the tube, if it has a hole, or you lift the bowl, slide style, away from the stem.

The extra air from either the release of the bowl of opening of the back hole add oomph to the hit, and allows you to finish off the hit with all of the smoke getting sucked into your lungs.


Okay … same page, apples to apples … we’re talking about a single hit. So, should you suck it through?

And the answer is …

It depends.

If you can take the whole rip/hit in one shot, the way it’s described above, then I say suck it through, all the way. It makes for a most satisfying hit.

That’s “if” you can take a single it to its completion.

On the other hand, if the hit is too big, and you have to pause, then you have to make a value judgment or three:

  • You put your hand over the top of the bong, so the smoke won’t escape. If you pause too long, then the smoke in the tube will become stale and taste horrible.
  • If you smoke all of the “goodness” on the first hit, and there is only dirty ash remaining, then that second round, in order to suck it through, will be nasty. Yuck.
  • If you choose not to pause, then you’ll end up coughing your lungs out. Not good, and it makes the hit less enjoyable.

You want to stop while you can still hold your breath and then exhale the smoke slowly. If you go too far, you’ll cough AND you’ll leave the bowl in that limbo state of having ash remaining but no green to “hit off of” on a second hit.

If you do have to stop, and there isn’t any fresh bud at all in the bowl, then you might want to avoid sucking it through. In this case, you have several options:

  • Lift out the bowl and tap out the ash. (Warning: No tapping, if you have a glass bowl; you’ll break it.)
  • Poke the remaining ash through with a bong poker. (It’s bad etiquette to hand someone a bong still plugged with ash and bong resin.)
  • Blow into the bowl sharply to clear the ash
  • Take the second hit, but not with the intention of allowing it into your lungs. You inhale and immediately exhale; all you want to do is clear the bong.

Again, my choice is to take a single hit, not pass around a party bowl. There is a satisfying feeling of completion as you carb the hit.

You feel even more satisfied as you kindly pass a bong with a cleared bowl.

Then after a few more seconds …. ahhhhhh …. you slowly exhale. Mission complete.

Any questions?