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Just found the root of all my problems in one line of a Facebook chat. Whoops!
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Last night at around 11 I went to walk the dog I’ve been sitting for. He was making little howling noises and sporadically barking, so I assumed he had to do “something.” I took him to the spot he’d been using for the past day and a half and was waiting around, when I heard, “Yo, neighbor? Sup man?”
I looked across the street to see a figure coming toward me. It was a white dude, around my height, with an oversized hoodie, extra saggy sweatpants and a “hatchet man” beanie (****the hatchet man is the logo for ICPs record label, but you already knew that). He came and stood next to me on the sidewalk, and introduced himself.
“You live there?” He pointed to my building. I nodded yes. I looked closer and saw that he didn’t look much older than 22 or so, but he talked to me like I was ten years old. “I seen you around before. I’m Jason.”
We shook hands, I introduced myself. He explained that he’d lived on my street for eighteen years. I said I loved it, and that it was one of my favorite streets in the Los Feliz area. He said it was nice and quiet, for a reason. I asked what the reason was and he said, “me and my boys keep it that way, if you know what I mean.” I didn’t. There were mostly small families and twenty-something people in the area, so I didn’t really know what was needing to be silenced. Then he hit me with the question I was expecting:
“You smoke bud?”
I’d never seen Jason before, but I’d noticed that a lot of young-ish looking, semi-thugged out, white and Armenian dudes congregated around my apartment building smoking weed (and selling it) at night. I assumed they all lived with their parents, because why else would they sit in a stairwell outside at 2 AM to get high rather than in their living rooms? As I was putting two and two together, I realized I hadn’t answered his question.
“You smoke bud?” is a pretty easy yes or no question to answer, most of the time. And you know what? Yes, I do. I realize that saying that on the internet means I’ll never be able to run for public office, but so be it. I INfrequently have been known to smoke some marijuana (*MOM). And I’ve never thought twice about it, but when a dude who looks like he runs on misplaced aggression and Mountain Dew asks me, I kind of freeze up, so all I did was just shake my head yes. He then lobbed a follow up question over to me.
“Wanna smoke a joint?”
Now, I didn’t. And I don’t consider myself a pushover, but I kept getting flashbacks to getting mugged at gunpoint two blocks from my last apartment, and I REALLY didn’t want that to happen again. I politely said no, and then he took a step closer and said, “I’m not gonna charge you.”
“No thanks, man.”
“It’s already rolled…”
And that’s when I caved to (well-I-wouldn’t-exactly-call-him-a) peer pressure. Why? Because I was scared! I’m not too proud to admit that I was scared of a thugged out, posturing, fake-hood white dude with an imposing stance who knows where I live! I’m a pacifist (*read: pussy), and I haven’t been in a fight since college, and I don’t want to remember what it feels like to get punched in the back of the head. And when my last attempt to leave failed (“Hey man, I’m gonna try to get this dog to shit. I gotta walk him a little more.” HIM: “I’ll walk with you. It’s cold as FUCK out here.”), I gave up.
Yeah, I caved! I smoked a joint with Jason, who asked if he could call me “D” because he’d never remember Dave, and who asked me if I smoked… anything besides weed. NUDGE NUDGE. When I nervously said, “not really,” he calmly explained that in addition to selling weed, he also had “Crys.” As in, ‘TAL METH! This dude was trying to upsell me from nothing to METH! He was selling METH one single block from an arts park with a weekly farmers market! This is Los Feliz, bro! It’s not the Wire! This ain’t Balitmore! (Sidenote: his business pitch for meth was that “it’s really good for when you want to get a lot of stuff done.”)
I mumbled something about how I’d let him know if anyone was interested (*right, I’ll ask my sketch comedy troupe if anyone wants some meth to make their Breaking Bad viewing parties more authentic), and I shuffled off. When I was about fifty feet away, he called out to me: “Hey man, you never answered my question.”
He came back with his fake-y swagger and proceeded to grill me about why I said “not really” when asked if I smoked anything other than weed, and I quickly made up a story about smoking a blunt with coke mixed into it once. Jason looked at me like I was the lamest dude in the world, and left me, high and watching a dog who was never going to shit, standing on the sidewalk.
And that’s the story of how I started
doing crystal meth being a lot more careful with when and how I leave my apartment at night.
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I got the offer one week and one day after getting fired from my last job, and I started today and it’s very fun and I’ve wanted to write about how glad I am and how thankful I am, but everything just comes out sounding like a 4th grade book report. So, for now, let’s just leave it at this, shall we?
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1,000 word piece of the same title to follow sometime later today/this week.
Anyone hiring a walking fro with a lot of jokes and a functioning Macbook?
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I wrote a long entry about this exactly one year ago today, so I’ll keep brief.
I still like it here, I am still unsure of what I’m doing/optimistic about all the various things that may or may not happen to/for me, I still love my friends, I still worry about money (like a good Jew should), I still think about moving somewhere else occasionally, I still laugh a lot, I still feel equally smart/idiotic, I still play in a band, I still sweat in the summer, I still don’t burn easily, I still get sad, I still get happy, I still eat sandwiches like it was my job, I still wish eating sandwiches was my job, I still write every day.
Your move, LA.