A slice of the pusher man

New York Magazine has an in-depth article on a low-level drug dealer in the Big Apple who is trying, somewhat half-heartedly, to get out of the game.

It is neither glamorisation nor condemnation, but is a carefully observed slice of life from a business minded, spreadsheet obsessed, upper middle class cocaine dealer.

Lenny sighs, rubs his temples, orders another beer. Sometimes he can’t help but be disgusted by his customers, people living the heedless life he gave up when he “changed from being a consumer in that environment to being a provider for that lifestyle.” But Lenny is a consummate salesman, and to his customers he plays the role of cordial and crooked shrink, supplying all the hollow justifications that once kept his own fears at bay.

When clients invite him to hang out, Lenny understands their motives: They need to convince themselves that he is merely a friend who happens to have drugs on him, not a dealer supporting an unhealthy habit. So Lenny chills, sips a beer. Sometimes customers insist he do a line with them, at which point Lenny, who no longer uses, “accidentally” blows out through the straw so the coke flies everywhere, and then laughs it off.


Link to ‘The One-Man Drug Company’ (via Metafilter).

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