How I Got Into Dealing Drugs

Preamble: Quick note before I get started. Mom, Dad or anyone in my family reading this, please exit the browser now. The events detailed in this post were a long, long time ago. Sandra McCarthy don't get excited and try to drop dime again because I can hardly afford my own drugs these days, much less sell them.

As I had mentioned in my previous post, in moving back and forth across the country, coupled with a computer crash, and nerve damage, I thought I lost the raw 180 pages of “my glory days” from the first draft of the book.

Luckily, I searched my Gmail and found an email I had sent to myself from July of 2016, so I'm fairly sure, I have the whole thing again.

Bad old days, here we come!

Chapter 4: How I Got Into Dealing Drugs

“People don't sell drugs, drugs sell themselves.” – Chris Rock


Like porn, drug dealing was never anything I had considered doing for a living. It found me. Drugs were my chief source of income from the early to late 1990's.

I've always been a stoner. I smoked pot five or six times when I was 13 before I ever got high, but I loved it. When I lived in Connecticut, we'd get our parents to dp us off roller skating, then we would sneak out to the graveyard, smoke joints and play ice hockey. I can remember the first time I actually felt the effects and have been a committed stoner since.

At 18, one of the things I was looking forward to in Georgia was the vast difference in weed prices. In Connecticut, a quarter was $60 and not high quality. In Atlanta, a quarter of weed was $40 and slightly better.

There was a hitch, every year during the end of summer ATL would “go dry, ” and marijuana would be impossible to find. That July I moved there was the worst drought on record. Finding a nug would be like finding a brick of gold.

It was that bad.

Once I had my truck unpacked, my next order of business was scoring a bag. Crazy Chris called a few of his pot dealers, but everyone was out. That year, I can remember the police erecting billboards on the interstate stating, “you think it's dry this year, wait till next year” with a big marijuana leaf and international no sign.

I was frustrated and sober.

One of the first days in Atlanta, I was going to see where my mailbox was in my apartments, this older black guy in a car drove up and asked me if I was looking for weed. I responded, “Hell, yeah.” I had the cash; he took off his hat with a bunch of 1/8th bags rolled up in it and I bought one. He lived in my same apartment complex, gave me his number and said call him if I need more. I strutted back to my building with my first half-price Georgia dirt-weed. Everyone was dumbfounded “the new guy” could find weed, where the locals had failed.

Within an hour I am back at his apartment scoring a bag for Crazy Chris and then a few hours later, for Chris's friends, who I didn't even know. I started making 3 or 4 runs per day to the dealers' place. For a few days, I got the sacks for people without making a profit other than they'd smoke me out or give me a joint. As the week went on, people kept calling, so I proactively bought an ounce. I figured I could sell three-quarters and get my weed free. After another week I started making a lot of “new friends” because I was the only guy who could score weed. Eventually, knowing that business was incoming. I bought 2 ounces, 2 became 3, and soon I'd moved up to a “QP” (quarter pound).

Without knowing it, I had become a drug dealer.

I had a few “regular” quote jobs too. I worked at UPS for a while unloading trucks. I also used to work for my friend “Johnny Cold Beer” installing carpet. I will save those debacles for another chapter, as they were adventures in themselves.

Between working, selling drugs, partying and my girlfriend Beverly that had just moved up from Connecticut, I had my hands full. I never went to many classes at school and dropped out in the first quarter. I already knew some pretty advanced music theory just from years of reading guitar magazines, so everything at school was a refresher.

While I was working at UPS, I met this guy Spencer who had a similar side hustle. He had a better connection than the guy at my apartment building, so together, we graduated from “QPs” to pounds.

Some guys from Kentucky tried to stick us with a few pounds of really moldy dirt weed with maggots and it during the dry spell the second summer. We told them we didn't want this shit, and they could have it back. They refused, Spencer knew one of them had a big grow operation in the back of his house, so one October morning after work, just as it was time for harvest, we went to his greenhouse and chopped down all the flowering weed. We cruised down Peachtree Industrial Highway in rush hour traffic with marijuana plants darting out of every orifice and Spencer's compact car. Keep in mind; this was long before the tolerant medical marijuana years; this was 1991 Georgia: In the eyes of the law we were carrying a life sentence in Reidsville State Penitentiary.

Not long after I quit UPS.

Besides from working with Johnny a bit from time to time, I never had a “real job” again.

After a while, I lost touch with Spencer and was introduced to “Hippy John.” John was involved at a higher-level than Spencer. He was arranging shipments of hundreds of pounds of weed from Mexico. He became my new connection, and I was his right-hand man. We dominated the ATL pot market by having “mids,” which was HQ weed but not as expensive as hydroponic, and far better than the cheaper Mexican dirt weed. The best thing about “mids” was they had the highest profit margin and demand.

By 1995, Dick Delicious wanted to play a lot more shows out-of-town, so I wanted to solidify my income. I had a truck that I barely drove so I sold it for $3000 and picked up 3 ounces of the blow. I didn't know if I'd have any luck selling it, but within 48 hours the cocaine was gone, and I was re-upping. I don't like cocaine that much, so I made for a good coke dealer.

Say what you want about the morality of dealing drugs, but many people have asked me how I got so “good at business.”

I learned it by selling drugs.

From my stint as a drug dealer, I can do even relatively complex math calculations in my head. For example, if I bought X per ounce of blow then I could Break it up into to X, Y and Z at know what the profits were from each. Selling drugs is a service industry, and a big part of it was just being available and in stock.

For a brief time, I tried to sell ecstasy because coke clients often wanted ecstasy as well. What I've noticed is cocaine cancels ecstasy out. You just stopped rolling (that's no fun). I found myself buying a hundred pills and giving 80 of them away to chicks at parties when I was rolling my face-off. I was a shitty ecstasy dealer, so I didn't mess with it long.

The funny thing was for all the drugs I've dealt the only trouble I ever got into was for personal possession. While I was in jail, Hippy John kept supplying my girlfriend with the mids, so I never missed a beat.

When I got out of prison, I briefly considered going straight and getting a real job, but the problem with being a convicted felon on probation is no one wants to hire you. So I jumped back into drugs with both feet, this time with the threat of probation looming over my head.

I went another two years or so slanging hard, during this period that my Internet porn career was starting to take flight. I eventually approached my suppliers and told them that I wanted to get out of the game because I was making more money legally. Because I had always been trustworthy, paid cash, and could move product — they didn't want me to leave. So they made me an offer I couldn't refuse.

No, it wasn't a death threat.

They offered to make my life easier! They set me up so all I would have to was pick up an enormous amount about once per month. I had three guys, I could trust, so I immediately split it up between them. When 30 days or so would pass I would collect my money, restock, rinse and repeat.

Finally, I decided to move to California. I went to my suppliers and told them I was out of the business and this time I meant it. To placate them I made the introduction to the two guys that I had distributing for me, thereby cutting myself out as the middleman. To this day, they are still in the game, as far as I know.

Now with that out-of-the-way, I had a few more loose ends to tie up. I had this big envelope full of cash in my room. To be honest, I never counted it, but I assumed it contained something like $2000 or $3000. My girlfriend and I had mostly used it as drinking money when we went out to bars. The night before I counting it and my estimate was way off! There was over $20,000 that envelope. I had heard of the crime of structuring deposits (anything over $10,000 must be reported to the IRS). So we took the money and deposited it $5000 at a time into separate ATMS.

I never got caught.

Ever since then, I've been a buyer, not a retailer.

And that was how I got into dealing drugs.

JQ

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How I Got Into Dealing Drugs from Drugs

The Devil Went Down To Georgia, Left, and Came Back

jason quinlan 1990 ga

“Live as if you were to die tomorrow. Learn as if you were to live forever.”
Mahatma Gandhi

Let me tell you how I wound up in Georgia, people ask me all the time. These numbers are no joke, my entire life has been riddled with strange numerical consequences:

  1. I moved to Atlanta 6/15/1990.
  2. I left for LA 6/15/2003.
  3. I am returning to Atlanta (hopefully) 6/15/2016

–>> That's three moves, separated by exactly 13 years to the day! <<–

Pretty spooky!

So, How The Fuck Did You Wind Up In Atlanta?

I never dreamed I'd be an Atlanta resident. All I wanted to do was get the hell out of Connecticut. My parents pressed me to go to college, but school was never my thing. Any skill I've acquired, I learned by trial and error. I am either obsessed with learning something or have zero interest; there is never any middle ground. As an excuse to get the hell out of CT I looked up some schools with decent music programs: the University of Georgia, Berkley School of Music in Boston and Atlanta Institute Of Music. I enrolled in all 3. Berkeley was too “jazz” for me and too close to CT, which leads to ATL. First stop was the Atlanta Institute of music, which was in Norcross (a redneck suburb of Atlanta). At AIM I saw one of the instructors named Jimmy Herring (who has now taken Jerry Garcia's place in the Grateful Dead). My jaw dropped. To this day: He's the best guitar player I've ever seen in my life and I HATE THE GREATFUL DEAD!

I was about to crash in our hotel room. I was 17 and my Mom made the trip with me; I felt the urge to go exploring Norcross a bit. I walked to the nearby convenience store. I could hear the din of thrash metal played very loudly and an observed bunch of kids around my age. They were drinking and smoking weed in the parking lot of the Hungry Howie's Pizza. Norcross was my kind of town (or so I thought).

I was wearing an Obituary shirt, and they gave me some “hell yeah!”, so I went over and talked to them. I had heard about Southern Hospitality; I guess that’s how I even got the nerve even to talk to strangers. They were cool as hell and invited me to get drunk with them. Between Jack Daniels shots, beer, and bowls I was coping a decent buzz. We metal-nerded out about the music scene, guitars, girls and weed. Crazy Chris (Henson), was one the guys and was super friendly. He gave me his number and said to call him if I ever moved down there. By the time I got back to the hotel; I was smashed. I'm pretty sure my mom knew.

I made the snap decision to relocate to Atlanta. Looking back, I should have traveled more. I would have never chosen Georgia. Not that I have regrets about living there. Atlanta is a cool place, but once you're outside of Atlanta, you're in Georgia — that's scary!

A month and a half later, I packed up my truck and drove from Connecticut to Atlanta. Before I left, I called up crazy Chris to tell him I was on the way. He said he was in the process of moving apartments. I asked him where. When he gave me the address, it was in the same apartment building. He wound up being my next-door neighbor. He lived in Unit D, and I was in B! Talk about a small world!

nihlist band

No sooner than, I pulled my trailer into Norcross I saw Crazy Chris walking out of the apartment with a guitar. His band, Distemper, was playing that night with this other band called Nihilist (old school Atlanta thrash band that are a huge country act now named Blackberry Smoke). Before unpacked the trailer, I was headed to a thrash concert somewhere on the outskirts of Atlanta. That night, I thought both bands were excellent, but I was especially impressed by the talents of the drummer in Distemper who was a kid named Dave, who was a little younger than me. He would later become the 3rd drummer in Dick Delicious.

dave from distemper
He thought my northern Northern accent was hilarious, and we became fast friends. The night ended with Crazy Chris after driving to his bicycle off the balcony on the second floor of the apartments after consuming two handles of whiskey and spattering his cranium on the concrete.

Welcome to Georgia!

I lived in Atlanta for 13 years; I went through some pretty hard tribulations while I was there and some great times, I joked would come back was in a coffin.

Now, this cycle repeats itself for the third time. 13 years after leaving for Los Angeles I will be returning to Georgia. The first eight or nine years I lived here we're some of the best years of my life. The last 4 years have been a living hell so I need to make a change!

I won't be returning home the triumphant conqueror. My house was foreclosed on and I've lost everything, in a large part due to other people's greed. I will be basically homeless, taking up residence at the Highland Inn, until I figure out what's next.

It's common for people to move out West and then blame the city of Los Angeles for whatever problems they have. I'm not going to be one of those people.

Shit comes in all hues, so do states, cities, and people.

See you soon in ATL,
JQ

Cats, Jail, Sex, and LSD

The picture with me and a cat on my back all fucked up on drugs
This saga goes back to 1990 when I first moved to Atlanta. I was in the midst of an on-again, off-again relationship with my first real girlfriend from Connecticut. We would break-up and get back together every three months, almost like clockwork. We had a crappy little apartment in the Atlanta suburb of Norcross, three cats, and not much else.

One day, I came home from my job at UPS and couldn’t find our cats. My girl having just graduated from Hooters (stripper training camp) to The Pink Pony (best strip-club in the ATL), said that they were outside when she left for work. I looked around forever with no luck. Finally, I called the leasing office and the bitch told me she had called Animal Control for letting them outside. I then drove to Lawrenceville (in the same courthouse where Larry Flint was shot) and sprung them out of Kitty Jail, and was issued a ticket along with a court date. Later that night, she thanked me for getting our animals and promised to take care of the ticket.

That was the last I thought about it.

Not long after, my girlfriend and I had our scheduled three-month break-up. I started hanging out with this busty blonde and one of our favorite pastimes was to drop acid and bang for hours. One night, I went to pick her up with four tabs in pocket. The plan was simple. Go back to my house, trip, and fuck like wildebeests. Romantic, no?

I had a stroke of genius, “Let's take these now and by the time we get to my place — we will be tripping balls and won't have to wait for it to kick in!”

It all worked on paper.

We ate the acid and started our 45-minute drive. En route, a police car starts tailing us. My tag was a few weeks expired, so this Asian cop pulls me over. I thought I'd just get a ticket. He returns to my window and says there is a warrant for failure to appear for the cats and arrests me. I guess my ex never did handle that ticket….

So, here I was headed for jail, not yet tripping, but knowing it was in the mail! I was driven to the police sub-station in Norcross (which is where they transferred prisoners to take them to jail in Lawrenceville) and they slammed me in the back into another police cruiser with the drunkest, fattest, sweaty black dude with no shirt on. It was summer and brutally hot. I was handcuffed. He was also handcuffed, thrashing about, sweating, and crushing me against the door. I could slowly feel the hallucinogens taking effect. He twisted psychotically in the narrow space screaming, “I don't care whose dick I have to suck, let me out of this God-damn car!”

Meanwhile, I see the Asian cop was chatting with a female cop, who is leaning against the car. She was the one that was supposed to take us to jail. The two pigs started kissing on the side of the car. She finally got in and starts to drive away, when the other cop runs up and knocks on the window. She exits. Now the two cops are tangled in an embrace, making out, and groping each other!

Meanwhile, the 400 lb. black man is becoming increasingly belligerent, pinning me further into the door and screaming his “fellatio for freedom” mantra.

I can't describe how terrified I was as I started to peak. Claustrophobia, panic, and suffocation were coursing through my brain. From my past experiences with “bad trips”, I was trying my hardest not to panic. By definition, “bad acid trips” are amplified panic attacks that 500 Xanax can't suppress. If you allow it to take hold of you, there is no coming back and you plunge into the psychedelic abyss for hours.

After another 30-minutes of frottage, she gets back in and starts to drive, but the Asian cop runs up and stops her, knocks on the window and the same shit is happening. I thought they were going to fuck on the side of the car! BY NOW I'M TRIPPING MY BRAINS OUT and I'm smashed farther beneath his sweaty fat as he continues his dick sucking tirade.

It took all of my mental stamina not to lose my mind. I knew everything could get worse if I did, they would know I was on drugs and charge me with a DUI. I was doing my best to remain calm. They hadn't figured out I was tripping and I was trying to keep it that way! My mental Kung-Fu must stay strong, or this would end very badly!

This process repeats over and over. The Asian cop must have been trying to bust a nut. I wished he had, because by this time I am nearly suffocating, dehydrated, smothered, and covered like Waffle House hashbrowns. Surely, the universe was playing a bad joke on me or this was a nightmare and I'd wake up soon.

Finally, after about an hour, she is back in the car and we drive to jail. Somehow, I arrive in Lawrenceville, I complete the entire intake process without the police recognizing that I'm higher than cotton in June!

Five more hours pass and they set my bail, which was only $85 for the tickets my ex didn't pay. My friend Scott, who would later become my bandmate in Dick Delicious, bails me out. The busty blonde had explained I was probably fucked from the beginning. I thought so too. Somehow I managed to keep it together until I was released….just as the drugs were wearing off!

That's how I went to jail on acid for cats while trying to have sex!

Still a proud cat owner,
JQ

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