Crack Cocaine and How the Idea of Doing Smack First Occurred to Me
I used to make my own crack; more out of a geeky love of drug chemistry then any desire to sell my possessions although that was a side-effect. I first started smoked rocks when I was a student, studying for a BA in Partying and Indolence. Some friends and I purchased them from a man who looked like he burned grannies for a living, all slurred slang words and grey tracksuit. He rode a BMX like a menacing simian. We met him in the backstreets amongst the rubbish bags and neon lights where the smell of takeaway food hung heavy in the air. And I found I quite liked the high. It was like electro-shock therapy from heaven. That was when people started worrying about me. I mean, at a house party, crouched in a corner with foil and a couple of chemicals, cooking your cocaine into crack is not going to win you many friends.
I remember heading to a club in Dalston or Hackney or some other place that makes middle-class kids feel like they’re being ‘edgy’. I was consumed with desire for crack. I had been snorting powdered coke most of the day. I used to buy it off a smiling Jamaican who drove a BMW with tinted windows. We had a good relationship. Earlier that day we were talking about women. He claimed to have shagged 135 women and he wanted to do 15 more girls before ‘retiring’ having reached his goal of 150 (it would be a nice thought if the lucky 150 got together and brought him a plaque for his retirement – a load of illegitimate kids would be more likely though). Anyway, as we did the transaction we talked about the merits of my new girlfriend:
‘Yes, I quite like the fact she didn’t fuck me on the first date and made me wait, I find I have more respect for her’
Charlie sucked his teeth thoughtfully before replying
‘Yeh man, now you know she aint gunna jump on no nextman dick yagetme’
And shot me a gold-toothed grin.
Holding on to these wise words almost as tightly as my coke wraps I got out of the car and into a warm September evening.
The night promised so much, as did the cocaine I had bought. But a few hours later I was fiendishly cooking up the powder into crack behind some wheelie bins thinking, this has got to be a new low. I remember crashing home later with ketamine-induced paranoia gripping my brain. I was certain my housemate was KGB. After all, she was Russian and she had my bond money and didn’t the KGB kidnap James Bond? At last the world fitted into place: me at the centre, my housemate’s cover rumbled by my powers of deduction. And as for tomorrow, why, I would wake up early and have a productive day of course… and then the comedown started. As most crack users know, you must have some kind of sedative to level off from the manic high crack leaves you with. I naively thought bed and sleep might help me feel better. Cue 6 hours of hell. Sleep laughed and fucked off. Any grip on reality laughed, kicked me in the balls, and fucked off. My head was pounding, my body was slimy with sweat and the unholy combination of exhaustion and insomnia gang-raped my mind. All I wanted to do was feel normal. Wake up and be a nice normal boy, not this drug riddled addict. I got out all my tiny violins and started playing them into a cacophony of insane screeching that made my head want to burst and my brain want to drip out my ears. Then I had an idea,
‘maybe suicide would make the pain stop’.
Then I had another idea (more or less insane depending on your view)
‘nah, heroin would make the pain stop and I get to wake up tomorrow’.