JUNKe Life


Jazzing up our lives a bit…
November 30, 2007, 3:13 pm
Filed under: heroin, JUNKe life

Occassionally – and I do emphasize “occassionally” – we come into a bit of extra disposable income.   And, believe it or not, we don’t always spend it on our greedy, self-serving addict-selves.  Sometimes family comes first and they’ll benefit with an extra this or that for birthdays or holidays.  However, when we do spend it on ourselves it means a trip to the big city to score some H, down, jazz, gear, or whatever the hell you wanna call it.  Lately we’ve had several successful excursions to the big city.

We’re pretty lucky in that we have a decent, quite dependable dealer whose pretty good about answering his phone.   We give a call a day or two before we’re coming and give our order and set up a time and place to meet.  Although we’ve known this dealer for some time, he’s very careful about sharing personal info – basically he shares none.  We have no idea who he is, what he does, or where he lives.  We just have a cell phone number, and the relief of knowing he’ll usually be there when he says he’ll be there.   Given that it is a four hour drive for us to make the meet site, it is quite a relief to know he’ll be there when he says he will.  It would be quite a drag to drive four hours and then be stood up by a dealer who didn’t give a shit.

He’s pretty good with his counts and his quality.  Given that we’re shelling out close to a thousand bucks each visit it is nice to know we’re basically getting what we’re supposed to be getting.   None-the-less, we’re never entirely satisfied, but most of the time we’re darn close.  What can we say? or do? since it is a seller’s market and our options are few and far between.  We either settle for whatever we receive or we’re shit outta luck.

Junk is a luxury.  As I’ve noted previously, it is a hell of a lot more expensive than morphine.  Heroin and morphine are basically equivalent in terms of dope per gram.  They are inter-exchangeable – if we need a 100mg shot of morphine, then a point of heroin (100 mgs) will do us the same.  There’s 10 points in a gram, or 1000 mgs.  Now that will cost us around $250.  Whereas it will only cost us $70 for the same amount of morphine.

So why do we spend four times as much for the same dose?  Well, consider it this way.   Do a one hour test ride in a top of the line Mercedes or a bottom of the line Ford.   Which do you think will give you the better ride?   Heroin give you the better ride – a much better ride!    Most junkies would agree in a big, big way!

Since we gotta use everyday we just can’t afford luxury all the time.  But it sure is nice to have a treat once in a while.   We don’t normally nod on morphine.  But with the junk, we usually find ourselves nodded out for around a half hour after each shot.  We’ll do the hit, and feel it for a few minutes strong, and then the next thing we know, we’re waking up where we sit, saying “whew, that was nice”.

Even though the doses are supposed to be equivalent that’s unfortunately just pharmaceutical theory.  Since when is the junk 100% pure like the prescription morphine is?  Never!   So, usually we’ll end up doing about double our normal dose in every fix of heroin.  Where one 100mg morphine pill can do the trick, I’ll normally do the better part of a quarter gram of H in one shot.  Now that might be a bit bigger than I really need.  But the whole point with the junk is to get a damn good buzz.  What’s the point of just doing minimum maintenance dosing  at four times the cost?   There ain’t no point in that.  So, I make sure I get a damn good whack when I do the junk to ensure I REALLY feel it strong.

Red Carpet Heroin

So the $1000 of junk only lasts  three days whereas a $1000 of morphine might last damn near two weeks.  Oh well, it is good while it lasts.   Lately we’ve been getting gear called “Red Carpet” because supposedly it was smuggled over in shipments of Afghan rugs.  There we lots of little red carpet fibers mixed up in it.  To tell you the truth, I thought the fibers looked more like curly hairs.  But whatever, it sure cooked back clean.  Just a bit of heat and all the chunks and powder in the spoon merged with the water and came back as a clear dark liquid (almost exactly like in the picture above) .  There wasn’t a bit of dirt left at the bottom of the spoon.  It seemed like the cotton filter only had to keep our the occasional hair or carpet fiber from drawing up into the syringe barrel.

After a couple days of shooting junk, we usually would feel a bit bagged out.  As if we really we’re used to it, or whatever the cut is.  Kind of a bit sick feeling, as if our bodies were having to work a bit extra to handle whatever all the shit is.  Because not matter that it cooks back clean, it is at least 50% some adulterant or another.

I wish I had an extra $1000 right now.   I feel like taking a drive.  But Christmas is coming so its unlikely we’ll be able to indulge ourselves until sometime next February.  Oh well, patience it a virtue, isn’t it?



How I got wired…
November 29, 2007, 10:11 pm
Filed under: JUNKe life

I used to work for a needle exchange program; in fact I ran the program. At that time (late ’80s) needle exchanges were a pretty new concept and there weren’t all that many official programs running. One of the best things about our program was our inclusion of active drug users as helpers. Active users would do shifts at the office, they’d do lots of outreach on the streets and in the hotels and bars, and they’d accompany needle exchange workers as assistants when we’ve do home visits. And they’d do a lot of shooting up right in our office.

One of the best things was the help they’d offer as program advisers – providing specialized “insider info” which made the program relevant to the needs of the people it was offering services to. They would provide ideas and advice which I wouldn’t have thought of in a million years (at least not at that time since I was pretty wet-behind-the-ears when it came to injection drug using and all that’s involved).

I really clicked with on user assistance in particular. He was especially committed to helping out the program, so much so that he really was like a full-time worker. He’d show up at the office (and it was a cool office – detached from the main building, upstairs in sort of a back loft) every morning between 9-10 am. Initially I thought this regular attendance was purely his enthusiasm for the job, but as it turned out he usually had at least one level of covert reasoning for the things he’d do. His covert reason for showing up bright and early was so that he could use the office to do his morning fix.

When he first started coming around he was getting a fairly large morphine script. One of the conditions of his script was that he had to pick up his dose every day from a local pharmacy. His doctor was unwilling to give him a full week or month’s worth of his prescription as one lump quantity. The reasoning being that he’d manage it better if he was just doled out a day’s worth at a time. So he’d drop by the pharmacy (which was just around the corner), get given his 12 pills for the day, and then come up to the office to fix. I was cool with him fixing at the office. He’d grab himself some clean supplies from the office supply cabinet, and just sit himself down on the sofa, and use the coffee table to cook up on.

After he’d finished his business, we’d usually chat awhile, maybe he’d prepare a few kits of safe supplies to hand out on street patrols, or do some office typing, and then he’d stay and hold down the fort if I had to leave to attend a meeting or go do a house call exchange with people who didn’t want to meet with anybody but me. Or he might fill his backpack with a bunch of exchange supplies and hit the street himself. At least that’s what he said he was going off to do. In reality he’d usually just head off to do some dope deals. He was actually quite a hustler, often selling a few of his morphines, maybe grab a half a gram of coke, and do some shop lifting or some other type of scam or dope deal. He was always wheeling and dealing and by the end of the day he’d often drop by again with more dope than he’d left with, or enough money to be able to make a fairly good sized purchase, as far as daily personal consumption goes. He’d be well set up for the night ahead, I guess you could say.

Eventually he started offering me his morning wash. Since I was essentially opiate naive at the time his wash was a substantial hit for me. Usually it was what was left over from at least a couple of 25 mg pink Statex morphine pills. If I said “sure, thanks” then he’d add some water, re-cook, pull it up into a brand new needle, and then bring it over to me at my desk. I’d definitely get a good bang from it. In all likelihood, I’d get as good a buzz as he’d gotten in the first place.

Junk Kid

He didn’t offer me his wash everyday, but after awhile, I was certainly hoping he would. Eventually things changed with him and his doctor and he was able to get his morning dose given to him the day before. I imagine he’d given the doc some sob story about how he was sick in the mornings and therefore it was a big bummer to have to drag himself to the drug store in order to get well. And by this time he was living in one of the downtown hotels, one with a peeler bar in the basement. He’d worked his way into the dope scene associated around the strip club, and its adjacent scene within the hotel. As it turned out, I had to drive past the hotel on my way to work so it made sense to stop by and pick him up and we’d both get to the office for 9:30 am.

And so, like clockwork, he’d do his morning fix ready when I showed up, and I’d do the wash. But not only the wash because he’d usually have quite an assortment of various pills that he’d gathered in his wheeling and dealing. Often hundreds and hundreds of them, which he’d bought in bulk, to sell in smaller quantities at the bar and on the street. By this time, he was having people drop by the office throughout the day and he’d be dealing out of it. All in all, it meant more dope for me because he might throw a 10 mg blue Statex morphine pill in with the wash. Or just ask me if I’d rather do some pill instead of the wash. Did he really have to ask? Of course I’d rather do the pill. And I did.



Still alive and kicking…
November 29, 2007, 10:02 pm
Filed under: JUNKe life

Just a quick update to say I’m still alive and kicking.

Kicking

Well, not actually kicking.  Just alive.