top of page

Smoking Garbage, Hidden Pipe


Driving down an alley in the west side, I pass by a woman standing next to a smoking garbage can.

"What the hell is that lady doing? " I say to my partner.


"Is she starting a fire?" I ask him again, th which he replies that he's not sure.


I begin to back up and she quickly notices and begins to attempt to hide. As I approached her, I came upon an interesting dialogue


“hey, did you throw something in there that's burning?” I ask


“No.” she said faintly, avoiding eye contact. “it's, it's nothing.” she says again with a slight Puerto Rican Accent.


“what do you mean it's nothing? There smoke coming out of there, what did you put in there?” I ask again.


“nothing, it's not burning.” she says.


“so what's that plume of smoke coming from. The top of this garbage can?” I say with a puzzled look on my face.


“I put something in there but it's not burning. I'm going to get some water to throw in there right now.” she says with an obvious concern in her voice.


“ usually, one throws water on something to stop something from burning…...and smoking.” I said one last time.

I stare at her for a second, and look at the garbage can once more, noticing the smoke plume beginning to calm.

“Okay.” I said and drove off to my job ,which was on the other side of the alley.


About half an hour passes by and I notice a “Streets and Sanitation” car pass by the alley then park in front of the house I was surveying.


“Excuse me.” I said, as I walked toward his white truck. “Excuse me,” I said again, unknowingly interrupting his work.


“Sorry. I noticed you driving down the alley and wondered if you have driven down the one right to the east of us. There was a woman standing next to garbage can that had smoke coming out of it. I just wanted to make sure it had stopped. “ I told the man.


He smirks at me then began to speak. “yeah, I passed by there a couple minutes ago. She was standing by the can still smoking crack.” he said. “ there's a group of people at the corner selling it so be careful out here guys.” He finished.


"Was she short and skinny, pale dark skin and short hair?" I asked. To which he nodded to confirm.

“ That makes more sense now. “ I said with a chuckle. “ she had a guilt ridden sound to her voice. She was probably cooking her shit right in that yard and tossing the stuff in the garbage can. “ I finished.

We exchanged or good-bye and he drive away.


As we finished our work, I couldn't help but thinking about this confrontation. As funny as it may have been, I couldn't help but feel real sympathy for her. I know what the pull of addiction is like, however it never stopped me from laughing at some of the stupid shit I used to do too. 


Remember friends, when cooking your drugs, make sure it is completely cooled down before tossing it in the garbage.


bottom of page