I Jumped a Kid for Cocaine Money

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Somewhere in Chinatown

I’ve never done cocaine. Out of fear and lack of interest. I’ve never gotten into a fist fight. Out of fear and a lack of interest. But I have jumped a kid over cocaine money. I say kid, but he was probably 10 years my senior at the time. I was 16 and just kind of fell into a really shitty situation. This is my loss of innocence story:

I wanted to hang with my buddy, let’s call him Pete. I was dropped off at his house by my mom. Well, Pete forgot about our arrangement and he had gone out with his other friends. He suggested I hang out with his neighbor, Bruce. I knew of Bruce, he was a friend of my friends, but I never spoke to him. He always seemed reserved. I was intrigued by him. So he came by Pete’s house and picked me up. He was with an unsavory type, another kid I knew in passing named Greg.

So it’s me, Bruce and Greg. Fast forward 2 hours of driving aimlessly around town, the two kids sitting up front convinced me to lend them 40 bucks for cocaine. Wasn’t so much convincing as it was annoying. They annoyed me into buying them cocaine. Promised to pay me back, a promise that was kept by Bruce only.

So now they’re coked up and the next objective was…getting more coke. Fast forward another hour and there’s two 30-something-year-olds in the car and there’s coke everywhere. The adults bought me a couple of Steelies, some disgusting fucking malt liquor that made the situation a little more bearable.

So I’m drunk, they’re coked up. We drop the 30 year olds off. The night felt like it was nearing an end and I was thinking about laying in bed and how I never want to hang out with these two ever again. But life happens, and it doesn’t owe you anything. Bruce gets a phone call. The town drug dealer, Pillz, was robbed a couple of days back and had arranged some payback. Some drug-dealing justice. We picked up two persons that were gonna help us out. Pillz’s brother Marc and a friend of mine, J.P. I moved to the passenger seat. It was Bruce and I up front. Behind us were Greg and J.P. And hidden in the trunk, one of those open trunks, was Marc. Then we picked up the 20-something year old kid who gave Pillz fake money. We were gonna “sell him stuff.” He sat in the middle of the back seats.

Have you guys ever played Grand Theft Auto? There’s a thematic device they use often. A motif. Whenever you pick up an individual you’re about to kill, he does this thing where he arrogantly narrates the exact reason why you’re about to kill him. Like if Tony Baloney hired you to kill Joey for banging his wife, Joey would be in the passenger seat saying, “Yo, I just banged this broad, some dude’s wife. Can you believe that?” Etc. etc.

Well, this individual did that same thing. “Just the other day I gave this kid some fake money, and he totally fell for it!” Fast forward he’s on the ground in an empty parking lot. He’s bleeding, his shoulder is all fucked up. One of his shoes is off and missing. His wrist is bent in the wrong direction. We took his money and gave it back to Pillz. Mission accomplished. Our reward? Cocaine, obviously. I didn’t partake, I went home.

That was 7 years ago. I’ve written about that day several times, I’ve spoken about it. I get the same responses:

1. “Why didn’t you get out of the car?”

2.”I feel so bad for that kid.”

3.”Do you regret it?”

1) I didn’t get out of the car because I was young, naive, scared. I didn’t know the two kids enough to tell them I wanted to go home. I had a thing where I wanted Bruce to like me. There was also the feeling that the night wasn’t over. Like, there wasn’t a mutual agreement where people decided it was time to call it a night. I still get that anxiety today, where I’ll be out and I want to be home already. But I have more control over my life now.

2) I don’t. I really don’t feel bad for the kid. Remove me from the situation for a moment, since it would have happened regardless of my involvement. Let’s take a step back. He robbed a real drug-dealer, not your local part-time weed dealer. I’m talking hard drugs, cocaine, heroin, pills etc. You rob a drug dealer, you’re lucky if you never see the guy again and hope that robbing him was worth losing your source of drugs. You rob a drug dealer and get your ass kicked? Sounds exactly like what the fuck would happen in that situation. Best case scenario, he learns to not rob people. Worst case, he robs a scarier drug dealer and gets himself killed. Sure, it sucks when people get hurt. But you can never blame a reaction. No one can say, “Wow that’s an overreaction.” No, he wronged someone and felt the consequences of doing so.

3) I’ve stopped regretting things. I think it’s a poor use of energy. Sure, the immediate response to doing something stupid is regret, but I’ll never look back and play the “what if” game. I am who I am today because of what I’ve experienced. I don’t regret the people I met, the investments I’ve made, the people I’ve hurt. Things that suck, things that are awful and difficult, those are the things we learn from. We learn from adversity. The only function of our mind is learning, so who the fuck wants to live happy in ignorance? Can’t do it. It’s not me, I’m too addicted to the pain and the immediate/eventual reward it brings.

I removed a lot from this story, so I’m sorry if I come off as proud of what I did or even indifferent. I removed the part where I was digging my nails into my arm, bleeding and focusing on the steady pain so that I could pass the time without thinking. Removed the part where all I did was punch the kid in the balls a couple of times and then turn away in self-loathing and confusion. Removed the part where I cried that night and couldn’t sleep. I even removed the part where Bruce is my best friend now.

I’m not gonna give you some bullshit lesson I learned. There was no point to this. There’s no point to the fucked things that happen around us. The suffering. No point at all, but it’s a story I have and an experience that threw me into the world. It threw me with no warning or reason, and it didn’t care whether I gained anything meaningful from it. But it’s mine and there it is.

-Steve

 

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