>FIRSTLINING

>Four score and seven miss out. That’s simple economics, bro. A lot of people don’t understand that they can’t get what they want when they want whenever they want it. It’s the internet. Instant messaging. Super Highways. All that shit. So now I’ve got these fools surrounding me 24/7 looking for their hit like I owe it them. And what am I supposed to do?

And seeing the multitudes, the goddamn multitudes of these fuckers on every corner—I’ll tell you, bro, sometimes I think it just ain’t worth it any more. Used to be that users kept their place in a line, a line. Succession and shit, like kings and queens. Respecting the guy ahead of you. No way that’s it now.

The world is very different now. This shit is multinational. It’s globalised. If a dude don’t like what he’s getting from you, he’ll just go around the corner and he’s got dealers every colour of the goddamn rainbow to choose from. How do you put up with that? Some guy comes up to me the other day, and asks for some “O-athenians”. And I’m like, “What?” then I realise the dumb-ass fool thinks I’m some other dealer. Mixing me up and shit.

I know—not O-athenians, that stuff’s been running down southeast so long it’s practically dust. And I tell the fool. I tell him, “You take O-athenians and you gonna end up with your head stuck to the front of a speeding car.” That shit’s filthy. I show him some of our good stuff. Call it Loving People. Like it’s LSD or some hippie shit, just to get his eyes open and a bit on his fingers.

My Loving People, this fool goes crazy for it, starts telling me that I’m his new God. No shit, this guy’s all praying and shouting to Allah and Jesus and every crazy-ass god there is, but then he’s pulling rolls of twenties from his pants and peeling them off like he’s a monkey with a fucking banana.

I want to thank Allah for coming down and putting this rich smackhead in my path. I’m ready to pray to anyone, long as he comes good with the green, but then he starts talking shit about the government and satellites and he’s speech is picking up speed like a goddamn Mack truck.

At long last, I’m able to say a few words on my own. I says, “Do you want this shit or not?” I say, “I’ve got plenty other people want this shit. They don’t waste my time yappin on about nothing.” But that only makes him more crazy. No shit. He’s pointing fingers and snarling like a dog. A true paranoid motherfucker.

I am the first accused, of course. He tells me I’m cheating him outta money, and he hasn’t even given me any goddamn money yet, and I’m trying to calm him down, coz I seen that look in his eye that you get to know you do this long enough. The look where shit’s about to get really serious. No shit, he flicks a lighter and starts burning his own goddamn money. That’s when I know I’m in deep. Sure enough he pulls out a piece, like a nasty-ass modified Ruger with these huge crosshairs mounted on the top, and starts waving it in my face. One hand he’s got 2K burning up, other hand a gun.

This day was meant to be the day of all our deaths. That’s just the feeling you get sometimes. Some mornings, you just wake up and think, “Is this all there motherfuckin is?” That’s sure what I felt then. Looking down that barrel, feeling the crazy just beating off this motherfucker. But that’s the world we’re in, bro. That’s why I’m still standing here now. I told him. I said, “Hold that cross high so I can see it through the flames.”

And the rest, as they say, is history.

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