I was fifteen years old and trying to impress this girl I’d met at the beach. I took one puff and didn’t stop coughing for five minutes. She just laughed at me. After that I promised myself I’d never be embarrassed like that again. I was going to get really good at smoking crack. But it wasn’t easy back then because my mom still did my laundry. She would always ask “Why do your t-shirts smell like crack smoke? Are you smoking crack?” And I would cover by saying “No mom, I don’t smoke crack. I was just around a lot crack smoke last night because I was hanging out with my crack dealer friend who smokes a lot of crack. Now get off my crack! I mean back!” I knew she totally bought it because then she just fell on her bed and cried. For a while I was a pretty casual crack smoker. I would only smoke if I was nervous or up late trying to finish a paper or drinking or stealing or fucking or dealing or fighting or eating or sleeping. Then I decided to scale it back a little and decided I would only smoke crack when I wasn’t smoking crack.
You have to understand, back in my day we didn’t know that smoking crack was bad for you. People would do it in office buildings and in the movies all the time. Hell, the convenient store use to sell crack pipes made out of bubble gum. But I knew it was time to quit when my wife Cheryl begged me to stop. I also knew it was time to quit when my daughter Katie asked me to stop. I also knew it was time to quit when my crack dealer asked me to stop (choking him). And so I did. It’s been five years since I’ve had even a puff and I feel great. My life is coming into focus. I’m starting to remember things again. I don’t wake up buried alive in a cemeteries anymore. Sometimes I just have to laugh at all those times I tried to “take someone hostage.” Everyday is still a struggle though and I’m no angel. A few nights ago I was standing outside a bar and someone offered me some crack if I sucked his dick. Ten minutes later I was sucking his dick in the alley and the whole time I was thinking “This isn’t you anymore, man. This is the old you.” After I was done the guy handed me the crack and I just threw it back at him. “Thanks but no thanks, loser!” I yelled. I’m a new man and am starting to feel good again. Just yesterday my sponsor said I was looking good. He said: “You look like you’re 50 years old again.” Which would have been a really nice compliment if I hadn’t just turned 27.