Novel about life experience
| We were on our way to work Sam, Luke and I when we said to each other
“ we're not selling no drugs like Andrew and those dudes on the boulevard” and we all agreed; but not two months later all three of our eighteen year old asses started to embark on the biggest mistake and journey of our lives.
My life wasn't the best when I grew up,like anyone's, it had its ups and downs. Initially I was born in Brooklyn,but was raised by my grandmother and father in North Carolina until I was seven years old. I have found memories of that time in my life it was very special to me. With some fore warning but no control over the decision, I was picked up by my father and little brother from my grandparents home and driven to New York .I cried all the way there with my face tucked in the corner of the seat of my fathers car ,so that he couldn't see me crying. I was scared and didn't know what to expect, When I finally got on the block in Brooklyn my father looked at me and asked rhetorically ” your not crying are you”
and I said”no I'm not” while wiping my tears and no more was said about me crying again.
Now that we had our family together two boys who had both parents, it would seem all should be well with my life, or close to what is considered normal. However my father was hard on me,not to mention that he loved to hang out in the streets. My father also was a lover of the women out there so he didn't like to come home. On the surface him being out of the house was great it seemed to be fine for me and my little brother, for my relationship with him was not good , I didn’t want my father home anyway. When he was home all he did was fight and argue with my mother. My brother and I were of the mindset, as long as he's gone the house was peaceful . But my mother fought him,literally, to try and make my father come home at a certain time, you know, not be out all night long. You see, my pops would leave the house on Friday evening after work come back on Saturday,sometimes, if he had some work to do on the car, or something major on the house that I couldn’t take care of. He would then change clothes, get dressed, real sharp and be right back out on Saturday afternoon.
After time went on, he would just start leaving from work on Friday and just come back home on either Sunday night or Monday. The streets and those women had my father caught up in a spell. Pops paid a share of the mortgage and the utilities to keep a roof over his head and as long as my mother didn’t give him a bad report about my brother and I he just keep doing whatever the bear minimum was around the house. My brother and I were happy about this pattern that my pops displayed back then, but my mother didn’t like it at all. My mother knew better, she knew that this was not the way a family was supposed to live. I look back on it and I realize that my mother was right. The devil was working and breaking down our family. You see with my father gone I got to stay out practically how late that I wanted to on the weekends. I knew that as long as I didn’t cause any noise or make turbulence all would be well.
The streets of Jamaica Queens were real rough and I was going to find a way to set my mark in them,because my doing so would make it safer for my little brother. I wanted to give him the ability to walk where ever he wanted without any fear, his safety and well being was a priority to me. My family moved to Queens from Brooklyn when I was thirteen and I learned early on out their and in Queens that it was important to pay attention to the older dudes. Through some of the strategies that they used it would help me make it on the streets wherever I would go, by listening to some of the things that they would say and incorporate some of my own ideas to make logical decisions in life. Because the street life was my entire life it was where I felt the most comfortable. However, my crew and I believed that we had it all figured out though. We were not going to be sitting around, at an older age, burned out like them old school dudes, telling war stories to younger brothers like us. But for the most part we showed respect and listened for we did understand the value of paying some attention to the brothers that did what we were trying to do before us. Sometimes what they were saying made sense, until they started saying things like , “everybody ultimately gets busted you know this young blood”.
We knew we had the remedy to this type of thinking, because in our young ass minds we believed that we were to smart for that to ever happen to us. At least not until we all were filthy rich.
We lived like we were behind enemy lines, the streets in our neighborhood were like a war zone , it was as if we were at war all the time. A combat zone mentality from sixteen years old until..., I know that’s not the way we were intended to live ,but this is how we conducted ourselves . For an example, what we did every day was look for people in the neighborhood to rob ,back then it was just for small amounts of money and intimidation, it was primarily people in our age group. I always had a pistol on me everywhere I went back then, ready to use it, wanting to use it. Thankfully, not all confrontations ended up with us having to use our pistols, but most of them did. The only time that we didn't use the guns , was when the other crew was well respected and they had pistols too , or the respect that both crews had for one another due to who was in there crew; because if we knew that the other crew had guns as well, it made more sense to work out the problem without the use of the artillery in this kind of situation. Overall, the artillery was necessary even when it wasn’t necessary; because if the other crew didn’t have any guns then we were not going to talk just shoot and run them off.
Drugs changed everything make no mistake of the effect that they had in my life and my community on a whole . But my crew and I were loyal to each other, we grew up together. So the lure to the drug game was not from strangers who were from some other areas it was from my friends, my peer group . However, a few dudes from around my way, good friends of mine did go out and get down with brothers from other areas, like my man little Life.
Life, lived on my block and he was a cool dude. Life was a loyal friend, but he was also known in different areas by other drug dealers who were making money and controlling their neighborhood. Life and I also went to the same high school and we would eventually travel to school together. This is how Life and I became real cool and it was three years prior to my full blown life in the drug game.
One night I had a beef on New York boulevard in my neighborhood. It was in the summer time on a Saturday night and dudes from all over were out there. New York boulevard was a busy boulevard. Older dudes would stop by on their way out to Manhattan and get their beer, drugs or food. It wasn’t organized back then, but packed out there none the least. On this particular night, it had to be about 100 people out there and I was drinking beer with my friend Luke. All of a sudden, this dude name Dennis looked at me with this hard stare, I said to him
"what you looking at” and he didn't flinch.
This dude wasn’t really that threatening to me ,but when I stared back at him, I didn’t know who this dude was, so I decided to step to him. Now, not just anybody could be up on the boulevard hanging out and since I didn’t know this dude I figured he was nobody, which would work in my favor but it also made me not fight as hard. Because if you didn’t know anyone up on the boulevard, then you couldn’t get a fair fight, we would jump you. I stepped to him and we started fighting. It was fast right on the boulevard where you have to win or you can't show your face up there anymore without the dudes laughing at you about how you got your ass kicked. All of a sudden, Dennis was getting the best of me. Because as I didn't fight as hard as I could. All of a sudden Little Life ran up out of nowhere and said loudly
“y'all not going to let this nigga beat Bond up here!" and knocked Dennis off of me.
I got up and said
” where is he?” Life said
“ he's across the street and look at your eye” and gave me a knife.
I grabbed the knife and took off running across the street as fast as I could where Dennis was in the park across the street waiting for me, but just as I got close his boy shouted
“watch out he's got a knife”.
I jumped the fence in the park with my arms extended and lunged at him at the same time , I caught him in the side with the knife, but as I hit him he took off running. I fell to the ground and scrambling to my feet, I tried to catch him, as I was off balance I couldn’t. When I got up completely I brushed off my pants, looked around, Dennis was gone across the park. By this time Life was there next to me ,
“yo Bond come on lets get out of here you stabbed him” after that we went to my house.
For the next week, I walked around with a duffel bag on my shoulder; I had a black jack and a knife in it. My friend Luke told me that everybody thought that I had a gun in the bag for that guy Dennis to shoot him on site . It bothered me a little, that none of the guys that I called my home boys didn’t jump in the fight on my behalf. Life said that he thought that they were all cowards anyway. Word got back to Dennis and he was scared to come back out on the boulevard. I lost the fight that night, but I won the respect of my peers and I found out who would really be down with me if I got into a confrontation.
Little Life didn’t come out with me on the night of the fight, Luke did and Luke stood there and just watched. He said he didn’t help because he knew Dennis from back when he was a kid and he couldn’t go against him or me. Little Life knew him too and he didn’t give a damn about him. After that night I started hanging out with Life a lot, he was a good brother. Luke was my friend and I DIDNT stop hanging out with him, but Life was with us as well Luke and Life didn't get along that well,but I didn't care,because whenever Life decided to stay on our end he would hang out with me . Life showed me the importance of forming alliances with brothers from other areas, but you always had to know,and remember where you were from that's where your strength was. We were around 16 at the time when this happened.
Two years later after high school, Life was in the drug game before me, but at the same time as Andrew and Steve. Steve and Andrew were Falcon's sons and we are all from the same neighborhood. Life was my man, and he was getting money with Judgment’s crew on the other end down by the Basiley projects. Now that was a big deal, because Judgment didn’t let just anybody get down with his crew. Life would come by my house and smoke weed with me ,he would have about a hundred bags on him. Life asked me to sell some weed for him on the boulevard so I said okay cool. I was right out of high school, I needed the money and I was up there hanging out anyway; so I took the weed from Life and sometimes I would take a little cocaine to sell as well. It was just some ten dollar pieces, I wasn’t pushing a lot, but it was enough to put movie and sneaker money in my pocket. I wasn’t even sure that I wanted to hustle at that time in my life. The problem was that it was Judgment’s work and everybody knew it. The problem also was that I could have taken work from Steve or Andrew on our end; but because of Life and my friendship, I took his work. I felt like I owed him that much plus he was my friend. No one really could say much to me about it for I lived on this end, although the tension was growing on the block as things were beginning to organize out there. I was stretching the limits of my own neighborhoods alliances for another crew’s opportunity. Without me even realizing the circumstances that my actions were creating consequences that were bigger than just Life and my friendship.
Life would come down in a cab from the Baisley on Friday nights, we'd jump in the cab and go to the movies where we would smoke weed laced with cocaine. Smoking Laced joints ,while watching Scare Face that was a big deal back then, Judgment and some of those dudes from his block would be there .I didn’t really have a problem with any of them,since I was with Life it was cool ,but it was clear that because they didn’t know me , those cat's didn’t show me the love that they showed each other. They showed Life love, but it was obvious to me that showing Life the amount of respect that they did, was as far as it was going to go. I didn’t want nothing from those dudes, just respect,you know ,the type of initial regard that was extended on a general basis. But in Judgment’s crew, if you didn’t get brought in by Judgment himself, or a top lieutenant you were not getting anywhere with them. I went to the movies and hung out with Life around those guys a few more times, but that was it. Life was my friend and we remained cool .
Not very long after that,I asked life to come to my house and when he got there I gave him his drugs back. I told him that Judgment’s crew was to large and that I wanted to be down with a crew that I could grow with, that was going to look out for me and that knew who I was. Unfortunately, I was right about Judgment and his crew they wound up flipping on little Life.
I remember when my best friend, who , was a real thorough bread dude, first lost control of cocaine. He was running the cocaine spot under me and he was getting his money and controlling the workers real well. Now keep in mind, we were still only 19 or 20 at the time. It was this girl she was a prostitute and very good looking .Now back then I was the last person to knock somebody's occupation, as long as it didn’t bother with what me and my crew was doing, but this girl ,somehow, got my friend to leave at the end of the night with her. And that wasn’t even the worst of it, because who’s to blame him or her for leaving together, not me. The problem was that they both smoked up 2,500 worth of cocaine in one setting ,which was no more than two or three hours. That was absolutely forbidden, we were beating spot workers for coming up short twenty five dollars, and this was a major situation.
When we caught up with him I wanted to cut him off, and not allow him to be down with us anymore .I wanted to do this, because I didn’t think that he could handle the drug game anymore. Sam was my friend and he was down with me from the beginning for him to have done something like this I knew he had lost control; but I was talked out of it by Tim, who was our friend as well as my boss. When I looked at Sam that night, he reminded me of a pit-bull, after its first fight, it’s never the same. My friend Sam, also, was never the same either.
The prostitute that he was with went on the run, she thought that we were going to kill her or beat her badly. It was hard to convince her that we weren’t. She finally came back around where the cocaine spot was to buy more drugs, but she was still afraid . I use to see her sometimes. She was wise to be fearful, because all it would've taken for us to take her life, was for us to know that she was down with an opposing crew, or that they sent her, or that they were getting a laugh out of what happened to my friend and she would have been murdered. My friends were my family at that time and even when we were wrong we protected each others right to make mistakes without outside ridicule or judgments. We didn’t speak of Sam's use of drugs, in our crew again.
It’s clear to me that individuals with wealth and influence use it to protect there ideas and positions of there friends and families. The way in which one gains their wealth matters not so much. What does have an effect on the way a person makes decisions regarding the way those decisions affect others is first having a moral compass. However one must be brought up in an environment where morals are taught or on display around them. If you place your family and friends in an environment where almost anything that they do they're able to get away with , any morals that may have been taught will no longer exist ,because it will appear as a total contradiction. All right teaching is replaced with favoritism, selfishness and a complete turn away from any kind of just consideration for another group outside of the insular sphere that is created from this type of wealth and influence. We created such an environment for out selves and this applies to all societal groups. We were out of control.
After that I started to chase women and searched for solace and relaxation in the arms of one of them. So I spent part of my off the scene time with a girl who was down for me when I wasn't making much money at all, her name was Appolonia. We had a genuine,but slightly volatile relationship, I knew her from back when I was thirteen years old. I remember taking her on one of our shopping sprees that we would go on ocationally, to the Gucci store up in Manhattan. I was about 19 at the time and she was a year younger, I was driving a rented Merkure at the time. Going shopping back then was something that my crew and I usually did together only,for a couple reasons: first, because if you weren’t careful, you could run into dudes from other crews that you had beef with,second if you went shopping with a girl you could get the girl that you were with marked and the rival crew could go after her to get to you sometime in the future. But Appolonia and I went anyway. I took her to the Gucci store in Manhattan. When we arrived to the store we walked in like we were stars and of course money was no concern to me I had plenty of it. Appolonia had an attitude like she was royalty , as if she was born for this kind of treatment. We entered the store and looked around, once we had picked out some things that we wanted to try on,the sales girl showed us to our own personal dressing room, which inside had a small couch with red velvet covering on it. The sales associate was a nice blond haired white girl and she didn't look bad at all. She offered us some coffee or tea, which at the time I didn’t drink either one, so I declined the offer and said” thank you.” Now Appolonia was about to try on the clothes that she brought into the dressing room. I can recall getting ready to step out of the dressing room when Appolonia was about to try on her close,when she said “where are you going stay in here with me” and pulled my arm and sat me down on the couch. I was totally surprised, because that was the first time I'd watched a woman take her clothes off and model them for me ,it was a power rush for me, but I didn’t show it at least I don't think I did .I just sat there while she changed. I was very excited and all kinds of sexual thoughts ran through my mind, but she was a good girl. And believe it or not, I was respectable when it came to women who respected themselves.
When the young lady that I was with had a reputation of not sleeping around with different men, she was treated like a queen by me. I had no problem with showing a sister a wonderful time. Appolonia was a good girl and I bought her two out fits and some Gucci sneakers that day. I got a jacket and a hat for myself. My one white Gucci jacket and hat cost as much as her out fits did, all Gucci. We went out to eat in the city and when we got back on the block her grandmother was looking for her. Appolonia was nervous about bringing the clothing that I had just brought her, to her house. So I took the things to my house. Mean while when I got back to my house my mother was sitting on the porch and as I walked in she saw the bags and said,” Gucci hmm expensive”. I tried to play it off and said “ no ma it’s not that expensive”, but here curiosity was already peaked.
My pager was going off and my boys were looking for me they were worried about where I was. When I finally caught up with them I didn’t let them Know exactly where I had been that day and I wasn't going to tell them. Because,first of all, they would have laughed at me and said that I was spending my money on a girl and I wasn’t going to let that happen. I had fun that day with my girl Appolonia and I wasn't going to let anything ruin it . Being out in the city shopping at the Gucci store and being able to indulge myself with my girlfriend in this sort of activity seemed to bring me some relaxation back then. Yes that was one of the good days in the life.
Now it was time to get down to business. See I had the work for the drug spot so if I wasn’t around there were no drugs for the customers, however, on this day I had left some work with my best friend just enough to get the spot open until I got back from the city ,because I knew I was going to be a little late. Again I kept the work for the spot, which was about sixty five to seventy five thousand dollars’ worth of bagged up work at a time. These were quarter grams of powder cocaine that had been prepared, broken down, and held at my house. That’s what the work consisted of, for the cocaine spot. I would take packages of 2,500 worth of product at a time for the spot, and either me or my best friend would drop off the work and pick up the money. No new product was brought to the spot until the 2,500 was collected in case the police or stick up kids came through. It was my job to make sure that we didn’t take losses, which is why I was in the position that I was in, running the cocaine spot. Cause I took no losses!
I started on the corner doing direct sells to customers on the street with my boys; we called that hand to hand. I was out there all year long, it was cold out there in the winter, but the customers were coming like crazy. The traffic of customers kept me warm though, plus the mesa soup from the Chinese restaurant. I was geared up with my Timberland boots and my Car Hart suit, I was a trooper out on the block all night I took no shorts , no losses.
One night the police task force rolled real hard from all directions to bust us and take everybody who was in the park to jail that night ... They came from the boulevard, the section in Roachdale and they had the security guards from Roachdale with them. I was in the park across the street from the boulevard, which we had control of as well. It all happened so fast I was trapped off and I thought that I was getting busted that night . I had drugs and money on me and even if I threw them they would've picked them up and said they were mine anyway because anything in the park on the ground the police were going to say “ this is yours.” I thought that I was really going to jail that night, my young ass. The park was full, everybody out there was scrambling, my mind was racing, however I tried to look calm. I walked down the path towards the building while everybody was scrambling and made it into one of the buildings, but that wasn’t good enough it was late and the police were searching the stair cases in the buildings as well. They were taking anybody who was out there into custody, I didn’t live in Roachdale, but I did know this girl and her mother that lived in the building. While going in the building I could hear the police and security's walkies talky as they came down the hallway. I still thought that I was caught, so out of desperation I headed toward the elevators, if there wasn’t one there waiting for me I was getting busted that night. I opened the door from the hallway to where the elevators were and nothing was there. I could hear the police radios getting closer. I opened the door to the dark gray stair case and ran up to the second floor, that’s where one of the elevators was. I got on the elevator and went to the eleventh floor,that was the floor that the girl I knew, who lived with her mother lived. I knocked on their door it was late around mid night , but when I knocked they opened the door and as I stood in the door way trying to think of a rational excuse for them to let me into the apartment, Cindy and her mother said “ come in side Daryl”. I said in my mind “ sheww thank you God, they let me in.”