I am at times shocked by the level of eloquence with which I am occasionally able to transform the turbulent vibrations that flow through my being into static words on a page. I am in fact gifted in this sense and it would be either delusional or dishonest to state otherwise. Another quality with which I am apparently blessed, is my seemingly continuous state of salvation from what could reasonably be deemed a life of eternal hellfire.
Last night, after a family thanksgiving dinner with some of my more wholesome comrades, I made yet another pilgrimage to the downtown eastside of Vancouver to numb the pain of existence by way of smoking the concentrated extract of the seductively beautiful opium poppy. As my mental state smoothly transitioned into a state of blissful nothingness, I was approached by a young man holding a meth pipe. He began to philosophize freely about his current state of affairs. Eventually, his ramblings revealed several things that we had in common, besides a penchant for hard drugs. It turned out that this 20-something year old named Jordon was also a software developer who also had a ten thousand dollar credit card debt. His drug of choice – crystal meth – and the corresponding fact that he had been awake for at least a couple of days, lent his thoughtful discussion a tense quality of emotional disconnect that contrasted with my own droopy vibrations.
As we sat and shared our own individual style of incoherent babble, a police car suddenly appeared directly before us in the heretofore darkened alleyway. I instinctively dropped the paraphernalia I was holding onto the ground, although my movement was not subtle enough to avoid the attention of the fresh-faced officers of the law whom had already jumped out of their vehicle. The young male cop immediately addressed my failed attempt at concealment and demanded to know what I was left holding in my hand. I truthfully admitted that I was holding a piece of tinfoil and a bic lighter. He asked if I was in possession of any narcotics. I nervously responded that I had picked up the tinfoil in hopes of finding some but that no, I did not have any drugs on me. Secretly, I was relatively sure that there was in fact a flap of heroin in my pocket. I did make at least one attempt to fish it out of my pocket and release it into the darkness. They noticed my movement however and told me to keep my hands where they could see them. Otherwise, they informed me, I would have to be put in handcuffs.
Although I was scared shitless to the point of visibly shaking, my partner in crime was strangely calm and continued to wax poetic, gently challenging the officers with a slew of cryptic queries, rendering them bewildered yet docile. I initially prayed for my friend to stop running his mouth but was eventually reassured by the officers’ subdued reactions. After a brief and minor lecture concerning the unnecessarily dangerous nature of our choice of nighttime activity, the officers bid us farewell and left us alone. I was beyond frazzled. The understanding of how unbearably close I had come to entering a world of utter disaster instilled in me such a powerful sense of relief that I could no longer hold a conversation with my new friend who was now expressing his amazement at the fact that he had actually gotten through to these young guardians of the law. It wasn’t long before we parted ways, and I took a seat on a curbside, entirely flabbergasted.
The unimaginable turmoil that I had just narrowly avoided continued to rock the foundations of my own peculiar slice of reality for the remainder of the night. At times I suspected the effect might have been of such influence that I’d be forced to halt my drug-seeking behaviour if I ever expected to fully recover. That suspicion quickly faded however, as I instinctively copped another point of down and made my way to the bus stop to wait for my ride home.