Parable of Crack History
No matter the life we have lived, no matter how negative or positive, the beauty of it all is that we survived to see another day. We may have seen our women transition, our children, best friends, parents, siblings, yet we are still here and too often we wonder why? Don't wonder, except the beauty of each day you are blessed to enjoy. Did not Jesus tell you the birds and bees don't worry about tomorrow? They get up with the morning sun and get busy. Don't you hear them chirping with the rising of the sun?
Why not be as the birds bees? Get up and get busy in the new day God has blessed you to enjoy. Recall those days when you had to hustle, yet you came up day after day, though you began each day with nothing, on zero, yet you came up when you got up and did something for yourself. Yes, you hustled and were blessed each and every day. On what day did God fail you? Not one day when you took that step and He took ten in your behalf? If I am lying, tell me I am lying but I tell you the truth I lived day after day after day as a hustler.
The hustling life is so beautiful because it teaches you to have faith in yourself and you shall be successful. The Hustler's Wisdom teaches you to get up and get busy like the birds. Tell me, was there any day in your hustling life that you did not come up when you got up and got busy with whatever vehicle you had to work your twist?
Remember the night you only had a toilet seat to work but you worked it to get your five dollar hit?
When you ran out of Homeless Papers did you not sell toilet paper or any paper to come up? Better ax somebody!
What about the niggas styling and profiling at Fisherman's Wharf who passed you and refused to give you a donation because they said you had more money in your hand than they had (and you did only put twenty dollar bills in your hand to hustle with because you knew if you had only twenties in your hand, ain't no motherfucker gonna give you a dollar donation. This way you could come up in an hour or two, and your did. You made $400.00 a day hustling the homeless paper and if you ran out of it, you sold any paper you could find, including toilet paper.
Niggas passed you and said they wasn't going to give you a donation because you had on a starched shirt and jeans with a crease, and you did and didn't give a fuck if they didn't give you shit. You were a hustler with class.
Remember the night a white man got out of his limo in Union Square at the Saint Francis Hotel and you tried to hustle him? What did he tell you? "Nigger, you got on a starched shirt, nigga. If you want a donation from me you better go home and take off that starched shirt!" What you tell that white? "White ma, kiss my black motherfuckin ass!"
Yes, your arrogant bastard ass made San Francisco make laws against aggressive panhandling. It was because of the brothers begging for quarters with their stylophone cups (of which I never hustled with a cup in my hand, and furthermore, if someone gave me a quarter, I would through it at them as they passed--although, many times I would have ten or twenty dollars in quarters at the end of my hustle, although the dope man didn't want you to come to him with change and might not serve you if you came with change. He might not serve you until you came back with dollar bills or might threaten to shot your ass if you came improper again.
Let me close with the best time I had with a Crack ho. We hooked up in a Tenderloin hotel room but we had powder and needed to cook it into rock but my buddies were not at home in the room across from me and my girl. My buddies had the equipment to rock the Crack but since they were not home, me and my girl had no choice but to sniff the cocaine so we did, and it took us all night as opposed to a short time if we'd had the crack. So we sniffed and sucked and fucked and had the best time in my twelve years as a crack head, except for one time with the brothers.
Once this occasion I was in the room with brothers, but the difference was that we all had our own dope so nobody was tripping, so we talked for hours on brotherhood issues and it was beautiful. Brothers talking with brothers, and this didn't happen again until my last meeting with Huey P. Newton in a West Oakland Crack house that I wrote about in my play One Day in the Life, and the one act play Salaam, Huey Newton, Salaam, co-authored by Ed
Bullins, produced in New York by Woody King at his New Federal Theatre.
My last meeting with Huey was similar to my session with the crack ho without crack, and similar to the session I had with the brothers when we all had our own dope. My session with Huey was in a crack house in Oakland's Acorn Projects but it wasn't about crack. We talked revolution that was not on the usual agenda in the crack house. But, as you will see from the script, our conversation was more important than drugs and I am happy we had the conversation that transcended drugs. You must read the script and make up your own mind.
But as per drugs, we probably would not have made revolution without drugs and alcohol (and sex). Imagine the pressure we were under, and I mean all Black people, whether Panthers, Muslims, Socialists, Communists, Cultural Nationalists, workers, lumpen, et al. And don't leave out those in the Civil Rights Movement, from MLK, Jr. on down who needed to medicate themselves from the stress of the USA Cointelpro program and other agencies out to destroy our liberation movement. Imagine, we were mostly young people subjected to all the forces of the USA apparatus out to prevent, in the words of FBI Director J. Edgar Hoover, "The rise of a black messiah." And he meant no matter big or small, no matter in a city or country town.
For example, when I was invited to teach at Fresno State College, 1969, after Governor Ronald Reagan got involved as president of the State College Board of Trustees, he ordered me removed by any means necessary, and at the same time ordered the removal of Angela Davis from teaching at UCLA, 1969. Gov. Reagan wanted Angela out because she was a black Communist and wanted me out because I was a Black Muslim who refused to fight in Vietnam.