The aging, unsuccessful hooker turned high rolling heroin dealer in downtown Honolulu enjoyed it when one time friends became supplicants. Isn’t there a tiny part within everyone that likes when people beg, especially former peers? The opportunity to repay a slight by telling the person “wait,” aahh…the stuff of daydreams on a disappointing day.
The lady who said she had cancer was not fun to deal with. This lady expected others to feel sorry enough for her that they supplied her habit. This lady had seen dealers who had come to her place because they needed a safe space to divide a sizable amount of dugs into 100 $20 baggies that could be sold to individuals on the street who turned $20 “dates” or panhandled or brought stolen retail items to the dealers to trade. The lady saw how much dope was wasted just in the bagging process. Black tar heroin was as sticky as flypaper. Each $20 paper was the size of a kerbal of corn. The quantity was the size of half a brick. So much got stuck on fingers, on the knife, on plastic used for wrapping. It easily washed off with water, which was how users prepped it. Put a piece in a spoon, add water, heat the bottom with a lighter until the contents liquified, then suck it up with a syringe. The user could inject the drug into the body or take the point off the needle and use the needle like a nasal spray for the mucous membranes to absorb. The nose is not the only body part with these permeable membranes, but it is beyond the scope of this story to say the locations on the body one can insert a liquid for absorption. Suffice it to say, careless dealers left a lot behind. Why shouldn’t they support someone who told them she was sick? How could they expect her to get dates when she told them the cancer had gone down her leg? Was she supposed to limp over to cars. Ridiculous! They could afford to give to her. She wanted it, needed it. What was the problem?
The problem from the dealers point if view is that every addict had the same basic sort differing only in why they deserved pity. Doing drugs never satisfied. It only ignites the desire for more dope. Ultimately, dealers who were also users barely stayed even. They were lucky to make enough extra to support their own monster habits. Usually they failed over time. The only people who could afford drug habits are people with wealth and resources outside of drugs. For everyone else it is a one way trip to becoming destitute and finding yourself, once again, a supplicant.
The dealer found the lady who said she had cancer infuriating. She clearly cared only for herself and thought she had a good enough sob story to justify expecting everyone to cater to her. Yes it is true that there are few words as powerful as the word “cancer.” But did this lady actually have cancer. All the dealer knew was she walked with a limp that was better some times than others. Suspicious. Why didn’t the lady get federal disability instead of just food stamps. If anyone qualified as disabled someone with terminal cancer fit the bill.
Worst of all, the dealer hated the guilt she felt when she couldn’t or wouldn’t accommodate the lady’s desire for a front or a loan of drugs, the cost to be repaid asap. There was absolutely no joy in turning down someone who might really be sick.
Then the dealer had an idea. To Be Continued…