It's Ricardo Baca, the paper's longtime music editor and critic. "I’ve covered concerts for a living over the last 15 years," he says in an interview with the Post. "That means hanging out with musicians, working with people in the industry, attending music festivals in Austin and the Coachella valley and New York and L.A. So yes. And though I’ve never been a full-on stoner, I’ve shared concerts and conversations and late-night sessions at the bar, and had Twitter wars with thousands of them. The long answer: I will share all of my experiences with pot and its culture, soon, in the pages of The Denver Post and denverpost.com... I am absolutely expected to be entrenched in the community I’m covering, but of course that doesn’t mean I’ll be stoned all the time."
Why the move? "The legalization of marijuana in Colorado is our biggest story in the coming year," explains news director Kevin Dale. Colorado is one of two states (Washington is the other) that legalized recreational use of marijuana in 2012. Stores are scheduled to start opening in both states in January.
Update: Baca appeared on The Colbert Report on Dec. 4. Here's a brief excerpt:
Baca: We've been covering this beat intently for the last five years…
Colbert: Oh, I bet you have. Are you high right now?
Baca: I am definitely not high right now.
Colbert: Do you smoke pot?
Baca: I don't smoke pot. I do eat it though.
In a New York Times article on Dec. 8, he stated: "I will never come to work stoned. I will never try and write anything under the influence.”
On Feb. 1, Baca told ABC News: "I do use it on occasion, medically and recreationally."
Baca edits the Post site, The Cannabist.