Month: May 2014

The Enabler

Warning! Don’t even consider smoking free base cocaine. That is the most pure form of cocaine that exists. One inhaled puff……as soon as it vaporizes and hits your brain you will cross into a hell that has no return.

We used to call that “crossing over to the other side” since you no longer feel that you are in the same room you were seconds ago. Everything around you looks the same but the feeling is very different. You will have trouble communicating. You will freeze into a position of someone listening for the slightest noise. You will posture for an invasion of strangers from every corner of the room and this paranoid feeling will continue for about 15 minutes.

As you crash back into reality you crave another puff and repeat the process again and again. New crackheads can’t stop and the paranoid feelings are not intense. You can still be social to a limit but that quickly disappears and you are suddenly alone in your own world.

Free base crack cocaine is used more by adults in the 35 to 70 year range. Many users would never go from sober to crack. They need an enabler.

The enabler is usually alcohol. After a few drinks the urge for crack increases. Usually, the user who is enabled by alcohol is in a Drunken Stupor before he will smoke crack. The feeling is different and unfortunately more crack smokers are alcoholics that become enabled. They will always deny that they have a drug problem and call themselves alcoholics. 
This is your neighbor. Maybe they are a plumber, accountant or a blue or white collar worker with a family in the suburbs. Rehabilitation is the only cure for this type of user. Rob Ford, mayor of Toronto fits into this demographic. He needs to be in a drunken stupor because he wants crack. Alcohol is the enabler. Rehab doesn’t always work for this case. Especially if you need alcohol before crack.

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Next week I’ll tell you about what enabled me to free base smoke crack and how I was finally able to quit in 2010. See you next Monday!

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What? Crack this!

So, here it is 2001 and the terrorists just flew a fleet of jets into the World Trade Center and The Pentagon. What was the USA coming to? A friend had just purchased a taxi cab and suggested I drive it part time. So, being a good friend I said, “Sure”. The owner of the cab company needed a dispatcher for 3 days a week so being a nice guy I said, “Sure, I can dispatch.”

I now had jobs galore to replace my former jewelry appraisal business. I was: a dispatcher, taxi driver, property manager, caretaker, and supervised at Convergys. Those 5 jobs put enough pressure on me to search for relief.

Someone asked me if I ever smoked crack. “What? Crack this!” was my response. Seriously, I had heard the term used in the American project’s, but I needed to know what this crack thing was all about.

This is what I learned:

Cocaine is a hydrochloride. Crack or “Free Base” (as it’s really called) is a chloride. In simple terms, if you remove the hydrogen from cocaine, you now have crack. Cocaine Hydrochloride or Cocaine Chloride. Simple chemistry. Home cooked and a very simple process. Not only are you removing the Hydrogen from the coke but also anything else that may be mixed into the powder will be left behind. The end product is cocaine in it’s purest form, which is why we call it Free Base.

There is a slow cook process that was developed to allow the free base to keep the various cuts present in the cocaine and that I will call “rock”. Unless the crack is mostly cut, when smoked it will have a crackling sound as it vaporizes. If it’s rock the crackling noise will be faded or missing.

To process cocaine into Free Base is simple and being a Gemologist I understand chemistry.  I’ll use a 1 gram formula as an example (and to help you understand).

  • Pour 1 gram of powder cocaine into a tablespoon.
  • Add 1/3 gram of baking soda and add water to just below the top of the tablespoon.
  • The powder cocaine will dissolve in the water and the baking soda will remain at the bottom of the spoon.
  • With a lighter heat the bottom of the spoon to just before a boil and keep the temperature steady for a couple minutes. You will hear the chemical reaction as a snap crackle and pop as the hydrogen is removed.
  • When the popping sound stops your left with an oil floating on the top of the water. As you cool the water the oil will solidify.  So, you will need to use a pin to gather the solidifying oil together.
  • The end result will be your rock of pure free base cocaine. If you weigh the rock you should have about .85 of a gram. This you can break into 8 smokeable pieces.

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This is what I was taught and rarely did I use a gram. I did not want to kill myself and I almost always smoked alone. I have never condoned the use of any drug and feel the same to this day. Don’t even try this because next week I will describe what happened to me after only 1 puff of a small piece of pure cocaine.

Next week it will be a wild ride to the other side.

 

Slip and Fall

After my rehabilitation for cocaine use the urge to inject with a needle remained. After work, I would socialize with the street people, who had yet to discover coke but were using an injectable drug.

That turned out to be a combination of Talwin and Ritalin. Mixed together correctly and injected , the high was a relaxing heroin type feeling.

Compared to coke, the T’s & R’s, as they were called, saved me a small fortune when compared to cocaine. For $40 I could remain high for several hours. I found a girl who was a lady of the night and a user of the T&R combination who eventually became my girlfriend.

It was 1992 when I decided that my young family shouldn’t see me this way, and that my wife shouldn’t have to suffer from my addiction.

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I left my two young daughters and wife (who immediately divorced me). I left the jewelry business for that taxi cab industry, where I could work alongside my girlfriend. We continued to work together and feed our addiction to Talwin and Ritalin. I did this until 1996 when I could no longer find an injectable vein.

We both stopped using drugs for a while and our relationship faded . I just about hit bottom and had a bad slip and fall into a hotel room, where I lived alone. So, continued to work in the Taxi industry.

In the summer of 1996 I moved from the hotel into a rooming house and began to work with AT&T, developing the Internet and related billing systems. Later, the company sold my division to what would become Convergys and I was employed as a supervisor who was drug free. I thought I was clean.

I started to assemble what would become Broadband High Speed Internet. I remained working at Convergys until 2001 when I had another slip and fallI discovered crack cocaine and, once again, it was back to drugs…..

Every Monday I will post a new blog post (the continuation of my story/the above post). Feel free to follow my blog and comment below. 

In a Drunken Stupor

Since my business was demonstrating monthly growth, so grew my workday….past 14 hours a day.

The ensuing exhaustion weakened my stamina to the point that I needed a way to get through the day. A customer of mine who noticed this challenge offered me a little vial of cocaine powder, and instructed on its use. That vial sat in my desk for a couple week’s.

One night I finally drew a couple lines of the cocaine and snorted away. After about 15 minutes I was energized and continued to work until 5 am. A couple days later I repeated the process with the same results. It wasn’t long before I was looking for a refill.

Eventually, unable to wake up in the morning,my day began with a couple lines of cocaine which continued throughout the day. Exhaustion was now the enabler to use of cocaine. By the middle of 1986, I had burnt my nose linings and could no longer snort the drug.

I then began to inject the coke and continued to do so until 1990. I was finally admitted to the hospital for treatment, where I remained for about 1 week.

Until the hospital stay my addiction was a secret. I was able to hide this sickness for 4 years but now it was game over. I was becoming financially strapped, and could no longer carry the load of work. My world was crumbling.

I was reminded of my story when Toronto Mayor, Rob Ford, finally admitted his addiction to alcohol and left office for rehabilitation in the USA. Mayor Ford liked his crack cocaine. The hard working mayor enjoyed a drink after a long day and when the alcohol buzz kicked in that was the enabler that led the mayor to crack use. Exhaustion first would motivate and enable the hidden desire for crack that required an initial alcohol buzz. He called it “a drunken stupor.” His demons caught up to him just as mine did.

Rob Ford

Rob Ford

Every Monday I will post a new blog post (the continuation of my story/the above post). Feel free to follow my blog and comment below.