There’s a lady on our street that has appointed herself Block Commander. She sends out occasional memos with updates and news pertaining to our area, the “ghetto” of North Vancouver. I love reading them – they’re always so cheerful! For instance, June’s memo was about the block party she was trying to organize with clowns and bands and the mayor and popsicles. Fun! Another memo came out yesterday, all about the drug dealers, slum landlords, and prostitution that goes on in our neighbourhood. Hooray! Wait, what?
We all knew there was a problem with a couple of the buildings on our block – owned by the same landlord, he’ll rent to anyone with (or without, apparently) money, and does not care what happens to or on his property. In addition to the drunken idiots and general all-purpose lowlifes, there are two sets of drug dealers – one at the end of the block, and one towards the middle. Talk about convenience! A good 95-99% of all the trouble on the street – the fights, the boot hats, the screaming gangs of roving ninnies, the suicidal teenagers and their angry big brothers – it all seems to stem from either of the two drug dens. It is super. Last Saturday night, there was a big fight in the alley and someone got his head kicked all bloody. Night before last, a “kitchen fire” that resulted in a drugged out lady being taken outside and scolded by 4 fire trucks and 4 RCMP officers before being sent on her merry way. Last night, a cracked out lady of the evening was screeching her way up the block, threatening anyone who looked her way. Super awesome!
For the most part, I ignore all the action except to look outside in interest. The prostitutes are new, though. I think some of the more colourful ladies seen shambling around the properties in question may actually be plying their wares in exchange for some drugs. This sucks. I am not worried about the drunks – I ignore them, they fight amongst themselves, I am entertained for an evening. The macho jocks playing beer can golf – whatever; they’re stupid and full of testosterone, insecurity and beer. The drugs can go away now, though. The gang of tiny teenagers outside our building who were apparently waiting for their dealer to arrive – they can go away now. The crack whores and the customers who use them – please go away now. I do like our apartment, with the snails and our friends and the terrifying tent caterpillar nest outside, but the drug situation is getting out of hand. There is a high amount of traffic on our seemingly innocuous side street, and it’s for the most part all bad. How long can it be before an innocent bystander is dragged into the mix? A drug deal gone wrong? An abusive john? Another (yes, another) murder, or more cracked out women stumbling naked down the street? Maybe suburbia and the American Dream isn’t so lame after all. Urban crime can’t penetrate white picket fences, right?