Pimp. By Robert Beck aka Iceberg Slim. Adnotated without permission. Chapter 3 -- Salty trip with Pepper.

Friday, 16 October, Year 12 d.Tr. | Author: Mircea Popescu

First thing back in Milwaukee, I reported to my parole officer, a Mr. Rand, I think. After asking a thousand questions and filling out a mountain of papers he gave me an I.Q. test. When he computed my score his sea-blue eyes saucered in surprise.

He couldn't understand how a boy with a score of one-hundred and seventy-fivei could do a stupid thing like peddling a girl's ass on the sidewalk.ii

If that I.Q. test had been on the basis of the half-baked criminal, pimping theories that I had picked up in the joint at that table from those Chili pimpsiii that were churning in my mind, and that I was so eager to try, my score would have been zero.iv

I was eighteen nowv, six feet two inches tall, slender, sweet, and stupid. My maroon eyes were deeply set, dreamy. My shoulders were broad and my waist as narrow as a girl's.

I was going to be a heart breaker all right. All I needed was the threadsvi and a whore.

Mama's small, lucrative beauty shop was on the main drag. Poor Mama, she was doomed I guess to inadvertently set up my disasters.vii

I had started on my job delivering for the drugstore owned by the friend of my Mama's who had hired me to satisfy the parole condition of a job upon release.

As fate would have it, Mama's shop and the drugstore were in the same building. Mama and I lived in an apartment over the storefronts.

Mama called me in from the sidewalk one day about three months after I had gotten parole. She wanted me to meet one of her customers who was getting her eyebrows arched. I walked through the pungent odors rising from the hot pressing combs pulling through the kinky hair of several customers, to the rear of the shop.

There she was, flashy as a Christmas tree, sitting before a mirror at a dressing table with her back to me. Mama stopped plucking at her brows as she introduced us, "Mrs. Ibbetts, this is my son Bobby."

Like a yellow cat hypnotizing a bird, she sat there motionless, her green eyes smoky, as she stared at me through the mirror.

Then the velvet purring voice undulated toward me, she said, "Oh Bobby, I have heard so much about you.viii It's so exciting to meet you, but please call me Pepper, everyone does."

I don't know what excited me more as I stood there, her raw sensuality or the blazing rocks on her tapered fingers that I was sure hadn't come from Kresges. I mumbled something like I had to go back to the drug store to work, and I would see her around.

Later I saw her slide into her sleek Caddie convertible, her white silk dress riding up exposing the satin sheen of her banana yellow thighs. As she gunned away from the curb, she turned deliberately and gave me a full dose of those hot green eyes. She was signing our deal.ix

I quizzed around and got the background on her. She was twenty-five, an ex-whorex who had worked the jazziest houses on the Eastern Seaboard.xi A wealthy white fence and gambler had tricked with her out there, and it had gotten so good to him that he crossedxii her pimp into a five-year bitxiii and squared her up.

Three days later, a half hour before closing, an order came in for a case of Mums. The address was in the plush Height's, miles from the store.

I made the trip on a bicycle. She answered the door wearing only a pair of white lace step-ins.xiv My erection was hard and instant.

It was a fabulous pad, and the lights were soft and blue. The old man wouldn't be back for a week.xv

I was just a hep punk, I wasn't in her league, but one of my greatest assets has always been my open mind. That freak bitch cajoled and persuaded me to do everything in the sexual book, and a number of things not even listed.xvi

What a thrill for a dog like her to turn out a tender fool like me. She was a hell of a teacher all rightxvii, and what a performer. If Pepper had lived in the old Biblical city of Sodom the citizen's would have stoned her to death.xviii

She nibbled and sucked hundreds of tingling bruises on every square inch of my body. Fair exchange, as the old saw goes, is never robbery.xix

It took me a week to get the stench of her piss out of my hair.xx She sure had been pimped on hard back East. She hated men, and she was taking her revenge on me.xxi

She had taught me to snort girl, and almost always when I came to her pad, there would be thin sparkling rows of crystal cocaine on the glass top of the cocktail table.

We would snort it through alabaster hornsxxii and then in the mirrored bedroom we made circus love until our nerve ends shrieked.xxiii

Pepper and that pure cocainexxiv would have made a freak out of a priest. She had sure put me on a fast track.xxv

I couldn't know at the time that at the end of the line stood the grim State Penitentiary.xxvi

I was green all right and twice as soft and Pepper knew it. Here was a hardened ex-whore who knew all the crosses, all the answersxxvii, who handled lots of scratch and wasn't laying a red penny on me.xxviii

The dazzling edge on our orgies was dulling for mexxix, but I was flipping Pepper with the techniques she had taught me. I knew all the buttonsxxx to push for her, and she burned hotter than ever for her little puppy.

No wonder I was freaking for free, those Eastern pimps had charged her a fortune.

I tried one night to get a C note from her for a suit. I knew I had really come on fine in the bed. She had almost climbed the walls in her passion.

"Sugar," I said, "I saw a wild vine for a bill downtown. If you laid the scratch on me, I could cop tomorrow."

She slitted her green eyes and laughed in my face, and said, "Now listen Lil' Puppy, I don't give men money. I take it from them, and besides, as sweet as you are to this pussy, you don't need a suit. I like you as you are, with no clothes on at all."

I was a rank greenhorn, sure, but her cold turn down of my plea for the C note was bitchy cute, and I was a salty sucker, so I reacted like any stupid would-be pimp who had been Georgied.

I had fouled up basic business. I had led with my dick instead of my mitt.xxxi

I reached down and slapped her hard against the side of her face. It sounded like a pistol shot. On impact a thrill shot through me. I should have slugged her with a baseball bat.xxxii

The bitch uncoiled from that bed like a striking yellow cobra, hooked her arms around my waist and sank her razor sharp teeth into my navel.

The shock paralyzed me. I fell on my back across the bed moaning in pain. I could feel blood rolling from the wound down toward my crotch, but I couldn't speak. I couldn't move.xxxiii

Pepper was sure a strange twisted broad. She was breathing hard now, but not in rage. The violence, the blood, had turned her on.

She was gently caressing me as she licked, with a feathery tongue, the oozing wound on my belly. She had never been so tenderly efficient as she took me on a beautiful "trip around the Universe."

The funny thing was, that throbbing awful pain some how became a part of, melted into the joy of the feathery tongue, the thrill of the thing that Pepper was doing to me.

I guess Freud was right. If it thrills you to give pain, you can get your jollies taking it.xxxiv

When I left Pepperxxxv, I was sapped. I felt like an old man. My mood was as bleak and cheerless as the gray dawn I cycled through.

When I got home and looked into the mirror, a death's head stared back at me. That vampire bitch was sucking my life's blood all right. I also knew that crystal cocaine wasn't exactly a health tonic.

Pepper was too fast, too slick for me. I had to make her shit or get off the pot.

I made the skeleton in the mirror a solemn vow that before the week was out I would in some way get Weeping Shorty, a pimp about fifty-five who, while a gorilla pimp, was the best pimp in town to pull my coat to give me a plan for putting a ring in Pepper's nose.

Before I got busted, I had seen him at Jimmy's joint. He had looked horrible then, and now less than a year and a half later he looked like a breathing corpse.

Hossxxxvi was his Boss. He had chipped aroundxxxvii and gotten hooked. It was Friday, almost midnight when I found him.

He looked at me and made that clacking sound against the roof of his mouth with his tongue. You know, that mischievous, weirdly joyful sound that a young kid makes the instant before he rams a hat pin into your ear drum.xxxviii

Then he said, "Well kiss my dead mammy's ass, if it ain't Macking Youngblood. The whore's pet and the pimp's fret."

The junkie bastard was jeffing on me, lashing me with contempt and scorn. Old pimps always know when a youngster with a yen for the pimp game is desperate for advice.

After all, they remember when they started and what a bitch it was just to learn the million questions. The answers would come slowly, from heart breaking trial and error, from the ass kissing of the few who had solved the riddle, who pimped by the book.

The cleverest pimp could give a thousand years and never come close to all the answers.

Weeping Shorty was an old man, and he had gotten past the questions and had worked out a few answers, but even so he knew a thousand times more than I did. So, I fought for control, I couldn't show anger. If I did he would cut me loose.

We had been standing under the awning of a vacant storefront. He pulled me with a jerk of his head, I followed him to a big shabby Buick. It was parked at an intersection in a cheap-trick district.

When we got inside the Buick I understood why he had parked it there. He could watch and keep tabs on his stable of scrawny, junkie whores working the four corners of the intersection.

He sat under the wheel not saying anything. His eyes straight ahead. I had kissed his ass for a half hour and now he was freezing up. I thought of the tiny pile of cocaine wrapped in tinfoil under my instep that I had filched from Pepper. I fished it out and held it in my hand. Perhaps the cocaine would open him up.

I turned to him and said, "Weeping, do you want a light snort of girl?"

He stiffened like a butcher knife had been run into his back. He looked at the wad of tinfoil in my palm and snatched it and in the same motion hurled it through the window on his side.

His top was blown, he shouted, "nigger, ain't you got no sense? You trying to go back to the joint and blow my wheels?"

I said, "What did I do wrong? All I did was to offer the C just to be sociable. What's wrong with that?"

He said, "Sucker, first booty butt, you don't transport no hardxxxix in your stompxl, keep it in your mitt so you can down it fast to the turf. Second, you're on parole. You're hot! You ain't got no business sitting dirty in my short.xli There's a law, sucker, that can confiscate a short with stuff in it. You know if the heat had hit on you you would unload in my short. Keep stuff off you. When you stop somewhere down it in the street until you ready to split. It's better to get beat for the stash than beat by the heat. Now what took your head outta Pepper's ass long enough for you to look me up?"

Oh! How this junkie creep bugged me. I sat there beside him trying to think of questionsxlii that would bleed him so I could get out of his face fast. He looked exactly like a withered baboon. His breath stunk like he had just eaten a bowl of maggots.

I said, "Weeping, Pepper hasn't got my nose open for her. She's too jazzy and slick for me. I came to you because everybody knows that your game is mellow. I want you to pull my coat so I can pimp some scratch out of her."

The baboon liked that banana I threw him. He was ready to talk the pimp game.

He said, "The suckers in Hell want ice water, but it's late for them. They ain't never going to get no ice water. The way you start with a bitch is the way you end with a bitch. You can start pimping hard on a bitch and then sucker out and blow her, but ain't no way you can turn it around and pimp on Pepper after starting with her like a sucker. Forget her and get down on a fresh bitch."

I said, "You mean there is no way to get any scratch out of her?"

He said, "Now you see I didn't say that. I said you couldn't pimp any scratch outta her. A foxy cold-blooded stud can always find an angle to cross a broad outta scratch."

I said, "I'm not foxy, but I think I could be cold blooded enough to cross that slick bitch Pepper. Weeping, you are the fox. Lay some game on me and put me to the test. I'll split any scratch I take off right down the middle with you."xliii

I hadn't noticed it was raining.xliv Now it was raining hard enough so that Weeping had turned to run up the window on his side. He had just raised it and was about to answer my proposition when there was a frantic rapping on his window. It was one of his whores.

Through the closed window of the locked door she said loudly, "Daddy, open the door! My feet are soaked. Nothing is happening out here tonight, and besides I am hot as Hell. The vice is watching me. It's Costello. He told me to get off the street or he would bust me. Please open the door."xlv

Weeping was a cold gorilla all right. He sat there for a long moment. His monkey face was tight and hard. He casually opened the wind wing as the rain beat down on his whore. She stuck her nose through it.

Without moving toward the wing, sitting erect in the car seat he hollered, "You bullshit bitch, make something happen. You a whore, you suppose to be hot. Let Costello bust you. He can't make a beef stand up unless he ketches you with a trick. You dumb chickenhearted bitch, whatta you think I got this ass pocket full of ‘fall' scratch for? Now get out there and work. Don't worry about the rain. Walk between the rain drops. Bitch."

He slammed the wing shut.

Her face was wild and angry through the murky glass. Her doperotted teeth were ragged fangs in the dimness as she pressed her face close to the glass.

She screamed, "You just lost a girl. You had four, now you got three. I'm cutting you loose, Shorty."

Weeping let his window down and stuck his head out into the rain as she walked away. He was all gorilla now.

He screamed, "Bitch, I give you odds you won't split. As much of my dope you been shooting, I'm playing ketch up. You rank bitch, you know if you split I'll find you and stick my knife in your stinking ass and gut you to your breast bone."

I wondered if he had lost her. He read my mind.

He said, "She ain't going nowhere, look at this."

He turned his car engine on and started the windshield wiper so we could see the street. There she was back out there in the rain whistling and waving at the passing cars.

He switched the engine off.

He said, "That bitch knows I ain't jiving. She'll make me some scratch this morning. Now Youngblood, about Pepper. You don't know anything about her. You ain't long out of the joint. I like you, so my advice is the same I gave you at first. Forget her. Try in another spot."

What he said about my not knowing her made me curious.

I said, "Look Weeping, I know you like me, and if you do, run Pepper down for me."

"Did you know that peckerwood of Pepper's is the bankroll behind the biggest policy wheel in town?"

I said, "No, but if the old man is flush isn't that good? Why give Pepper up because she's in shape. If you gave me an angle I could get some of that policy scratch."

"Look Blood, brace yourself. Here is the rest of the rundown. Pepper is a rotten freak broad. You ain't the only stud she freaks off with. I could name a half dozen who ride her. The dangerous one is Dalanski the detective. He is in a bad way over Pepper. If he ever found out you were freaking off with her, Blood, shame on your ass."

I was shaken by the rundown. Like a sucker I believed that I was the whole show in her love life. I was thinking like the young punk I was.

I said, "Are you sure there are that many studs laying her?"

He said, "Maybe more."

I had a bellyache and a worse headache. I felt lousy.

I mumbled, "Thanks for the advice and the run down, ‘Weeping.'" I got out of the Buick and walked home in the rain. When I got there it was three thirty and Mama was angry, worried and raving. She was right of course. I was violating my parole to be out after eleven P.M.

I was coming out of the drug store to make a delivery when I bumped into him on the sidewalk. It was old "Party Time."

While doing his year for our caper he had copped a lonely-hearts broad through the mails.

She went his train fare. He finished the bit and went to visit her and made a home.

She had died and the home went to relatives who threw him out. After five bits he was still full of crooked inspiration. I liked him, but not enough to join him again in a hustle. I had only been out four and a half months. I cooled it and avoided him in a smooth way.xlvi

I hadn't touched Pepper in a week.xlvii She had called the drug store twice just before closing. She had made licking and sucking sounds to get me out to her place. I made excuses and put her off. I wondered at the time why I was so important when she was a douche bagxlviii for that mob that was laying it into her.

The day before Weeping brought me a proposition, Dalanski, the roller, came into the drug store for cigarettes and gave me a thoughtful look.

I was walking home. It was my day off. It was Saturday night around nine. I had been to see a prison movie. It was a grim drama. A young green punk tried a double cross. He was criss-crossed into the joint. He made deadly enemies while doing his long bit.

When he got out, a long black short pulled up and riddled him with a tommy gun.

A big black car was pulling to the curb toward me. There was something familiar about that small pinhead driver. It was Weeping.

He jerked his head and opened the car door. I went over and got in. He was excited. At first I thought because his car was clean.xlix

He told me, "Blood, put a smile on your face. Old Shorty's got good news for you. How would you like a half a G in your slide?"

I said, "All right, give me the poison and take me to the baby."

He said, "I ain't shucking. It's cream-puff work. In fact Tender Dick, it's what you like to do best. Want the run down?"

"If you are going to tell me some broad is going to lay out fivehundred frog skins to get her rocks off, say it. I would lay a syphillis patient that died a week ago for that kind of scratch."l

Then he said, "Pepper is the broad. All you have to do is take her to bed and go through a full circus with her, that's all. Are you game?"

"Yes, if I get a rake off from the bleacher seats, I said, "and you tell me who wants the show on."

His eyebrows jitterbugged. He was a slick joker. I should have run from him.

He said, "No, I can't tell you who.li Don't worry about the scratch, it's guaranteed.lii Are you in?"liii

I said, "Yes, but I want to know more. Like why?"liv

The tale he told me went like this. A fast hustler from New York who specialized in pressure racketslv saw a chance to trim Pepper's old man out of a bundle.

The hustler knew that Pepper was a dog and a freak. He also knew that Pepper's old man was hung up on her.

Even though he had met her in a whorehouse and squared her up, he was dangerously jealous of her and unpredictable if he caught her wrong.lvi

The hustler felt that Pepper would be in a sweet state for pressurelvii if solid evidence could be gotten showing Pepper as the dog she was.

The hustler was sure he could force her to help him in his scheme to trim the old man. He needed clear unfaked photographs.

His plan would be simple. Once he got the club over Pepper's head, he would force her to sneak in phony "hit" slips against the policy wheel.lviii

The hustler had discovered that for Pepper, from her inside position in the wheellix, it would be very simple.

The hustler would pay me five bills after I had brought Pepper to a prearranged set up.

I was all for the scratch, and eager to give Pepper some grief for the way she had used me, and outslicked me.

Weeping told me the trap was set.lx I was to wait until Pepper itched enough to call me. I was not to call her.lxi

Whenever she called I was to tell her to meet me in the bathroom of an old, but still elegant hotel on the fringe of the arcade and shooting gallery section of town.lxii

I was then to call him. I was to make sure that at least two hours passed between her call and when I went to the desk and asked for the key to apartment two-fourteen. My name would be Barksdale.lxiii That name I'll never forget if I live to get a hundred.lxiv

On the third day after I had gotten the rundown on the trap, Pepper called the store. It was eight fifty-five P.M., five minutes before closing. I answered the phone. She was burning blisters for one of our parties.

She invited me to her place as usual. I told her that I had to tidy up the store and also mail an important package at the downtown post office for my boss.

I asked her if she could get dressed and meet me by ten-thirty in the bar room of the hotel. It would be more convenient that way. lxv She agreed.lxvi

I called Weeping. He told me to maneuver Pepper's face toward the head of the bed as much as possible when we got into the act.

I went to the bar room and drank rum and coke until she got there.

I almost felt sorry for her when I saw her coming through the door. She looked so innocent and clean, not at all like the cruddy filly that humped up a funky lather beneath a mob of jockeys.lxvii

We took a booth so I could watch the clock. She was Jacqueline the Ripper with a fly, but she had a great gentle touch inside if you know what I mean.lxviii

She was a space bufflxix all right. She was checking out my readiness for entry into inner space.

At eleven sharp Mr. and Mrs. Barksdale picked up the key to their pad. We walked onto the stage.

Wyatt Earp would have gone ape over the pad.lxx

It was overstuffed horse-hair living room. Gleaming brass bed, giant cherubs on the wall, Gideon Bible on the marble top bedroom table. Midget, efficiency kitchen cubicle. So what, we hadn't come to cook.lxxi

High on the wall over the bed were the two gold colored cherubs. Their eyes were holes, their mouths popped wide holding the light fixtures.

When we got into the brass bed we got the show on the road.

I was almost sure some steamed up joker in the adjoining room had his gizmo focused on the carnival through a drilled hole peeking from a cherub's empty eye socket.

Pepper let me out of her Hoglxxii at one-thirty in the A.M. just two blocks from Weeping's whore stand. I felt good. I was going to collect five fat ones for my pleasant night's work. It was like having a license to steal.

I spotted Weeping's pin-head in his Buick. As I walked toward him, I couldn't stop thinking about that Eastern blackmailer. I thought about that green rain that would fall when Pepper started rolling those phony hits in. I thought about how I could catch a few palms full.lxxiii

Smooth as silk the pay-off came off. When Weeping handed me my scratch he gave me a funny look.

He said, "Take it easy Blood, take it easy."

The next day I went downtown and got clean.lxxiv

It was the early years for the Nat "King" Cole Trio. They were playing for a two-buck dance that night at Liberty Hall.lxxv Party and I were in the balcony at a table overlooking the crowded dance floor. We were slaving like sand hogs trying to tunnel intolxxvi the flashy high yellows on our laps. They were almost stoned. Ready for the killing floor.

Party saw him first coming in the front door of the auditorium. He knifed me in the side with his elbow.

Then con style, from the side of his mouth, he whispered, "Dalanski, the heat."

The bastard's head was on a swivel. He was looking everywhere at once. I felt mad butterflies with stingers ricocheting in my belly when his eyes spotted me and locked on me. I froze, his eyes were still riveted to me as he walked up the stairway straight for me.

I pretended to ignore him. He walked up behind me and stood there for a long moment. Then he dropped a hand like an anvil on my shoulder.

He said, "Get up! I want to talk to you."

My legs were shuddery as I stood in a small alcove with him.

He said, "Where were you around ten and after last night?"

Relief and courage flooded me. That was easy; I hedged : "Why?"

He said, "Look punk, don't get cute. Where were you? Don't answer. I know where you were. You were out on Crystal Road in the nighttime burglarizing the home of Mr. and Mrs. Frank Ibbetts. Night-time burglary is five to ten."

My courage and relief swiftly drained out. Frank Ibbetts was Pepper's old man. He was roughly frisking me now. He ran his hands into my side pockets. With one hand he brought out the three hundred dollars left from my pay-off, plus twenty clean dollars. The other came out with a strange brass door key.

He said, "Jeez, for a flunky in a drug store you got a helluva bankroll. Where did you get it and where and what does this key fit?"

I said, "Officer, that's crap-game money. I have never seen that key before."

He grabbed me firmly like he had captured Sutton and walked me through the dancers out the door to his short.

He took me down[town] and booked me on suspicion of Grand Theft burglary. He also booked the scratch and key as evidence.

Mama came down bright and early the next morning. She was in a near fainting dither. She was clutching her chest over her heart.

She said, "Bobby, you are going to kill your mama. You haven't been out six months and now you are back in trouble. What's wrong with you? Are you crazy? You need prayer. Get down on your knees and pray to the good Lord."

I said, "I don't need to pray. Mama, believe me there is nothing to worry about. I didn't steal anything from Pepper's house. I am not nuts. Pepper will tell them the truth. Mama, I was with her."

I got my first nightmare inkling of the cork-screw criss-cross when Mama broke into tears. She rolled her eyes to heaven.

She blubbered, "Bobby, there's no hope for you. You are going to spend your young life in prisons. Don't you know Son, your mama loves you? You don't have to lie to me."

"I went out to see her early this morning," she said. "She told me she hasn't seen you in a week. Mr. Dalanski has brought Pepper's spare key down here. That key in your pocket was one you stole when you made a delivery out there."

Finally, she went down the corridor. Her shoulders were jerking in her sobbing.

It was an ironlxxvii cross. My public defender went to that hotel to get corroboration for my alibi. The joint had been too crowded, too hectic. None of the employees remembered Pepper and me. At least they said they didn't.lxxviii

The desk man on that night had been a substitute and wasn't now available.lxxix My signature wasn't on the register anyway.

I went into court again with the dirty end of the stick. I was a parolee arrested at one A.M. with a bottle of whiskey in front of me in a public place.

Pepper looked like a prospect for a convent. She had stripped herself of paint and gee-gaws. She testified that the key found in my slidelxxx was hers, and that yes, it was possible that I had stolen it while making deliveries to her home. No, she had not seen me for a week before my arrest.

My defender had gotten a change of venue. I was afraid to go before the judge who had sent me to the reformatory.

I got two years in state prison for grand theft, the amount, fivehundred dollars. My parole was to run concurrently with the new sentence.

Pepper's old man was with her in court. They bought the cross.lxxxi I couldn't figure who had sold it to them.

Was Dalanski the joker that Weeping worked for? Or had Dalanski heard that I had a wad, and without knowing anything about the hotel affairlxxxii sold it to Pepper?

For what reason had the old man bought it? Had those hotel employees been bribed or threatened? If Dalanski was the brain, did he want me out of the way for a reason other than Pepper?lxxxiii

Maybe some day I'll find out what really happened. I know if I had had lots of scratch Miss Justice would have smiled on me. She favors the bird with the scratch.lxxxiv

The Waupun State Prison was tough, but in a different way than the reformatory. Here the cons were older. Many of them were murderers serving life sentences.

These cons would never put up with the kind of petty tyranny that was practiced in the reformatory. Here the food was much better. There were industries here. A con could learn a trade if he wanted to.

He could go into the yard during recreation hours and learn other trades and skills. Here the desperate heist men congregated to plot new, more sensational robberies. The fruits and punks lay on the grass in the sun romancing each other.lxxxv

This was a prison of cliques, of bloody vendettas. I found my level with the soft spoken smooth Midwestern pimps and stuff players.

Since I was one of the youngest cons in the joint I bunked in a dormitory. It was like a suite in the Waldorf compared to the bug infested tight cells in the reformatory with their odious crap buckets.

It was there in that dormitory that I got the insatiable desire to pimp. I was a member of a clique that talked about nothing except whores and pimping. I began to feel a new slickness and hardness.lxxxvi

I worked in the laundry. I kept my clothing fresh and neat. It was in the laundry that I met the first man from whom I got cunning to balance my hardness.

He was an old Drag man with his bit getting short. He was the first to attempt to teach me to control my emotions.

He would say, "Always remember whether you be sucker or hustler in the world out there, you've got that vital edge if you can iron-clad your feelings. I picture the human mind as a movie screen. If you're a dopey sucker, you'll just sit and watch all kinds of mindwrecking, damn fool movies on that screen."

He said. "Son, there is no reason except a stupid one for anybody to project on that screen anything that will worry him or dull that vital edge.lxxxvii After all, we are the absolute bosses of that whole theatre and show in our minds. We even write the script. So always write positive, dynamic scripts and show only the best movies for you on that screen whether you are pimp or priest."

His rundown of his screen theory saved my sanity many years later. He was a twisted wise man and one day when he wasn't looking, a movie flashed on the screen. The title was "Death For an Old Con."

He died in his sleep behind the high gray walls. His fate was that which lives like a specter with all cons. The fear of dying in a cell.lxxxviii

I sure missed that convict philosopher. The wisdom he taught me took me successfully through my bit. I was released after twenty-one months. I got three months "good time" for good conduct.

With "good time" I was free, hard, slick and bitter. No more small towns for me. I was going to the city to get my degree in pimping.

The Pepper cross had answered a perplexing question for me. Why did Justice really always wear a blindfold? I knew now. It was because the cunning bitch had dollar signs for eyeballs.

Continued >>

  1. Get the fuck out of here, 175. Black iliterate kid from the ghetto in the 30s, before they even figured out how to fake them tests to artificially prop the pickaninnies. Why not 5`400, or 1.14e19 for that matter, it makes about as much sense..

    Dude's about 108, within a ~3 points margin with a 99.5% confidence rating (and Misty the ghosty maybe 103). []

  2. Gimme a break, what was he supposed to have done, work in his father's bank ? Get a longshoreman's union no-show job ?

    The better question's how does a guy manage to sell six million books and realise less than 50k for his side. Sub 0.1% is low even for that scammy "industry". []

  3. One whore pimps, ie guys with no money and no game. []
  4. That's not how IQ tests work. []
  5. That's generally how juvenile "parole" works, and always has : they let them out just after statutory maturity, in the hope they have enough sense to join the army and go die honorably somewhere the municipality doesn't have to wash the brains off afterwards. []
  6. Clothes. []
  7. Yo Mama's a whore. Seriously now, how much IQ does it take to figure it out ? []
  8. Wut ?!

    Da fuck's this dumb broad heard, "oh, kid's in reformatory after trying to market a fifteen year old hussy to her dad's friends & coworkers" ? Or what exactly is this eighteen year old notable for, "he eats bush good, ever since he was three" ? There's nothing the fuck here, I'm three chapters in not to mention forewords and fore-forequotes, and I got nothing the fuck to show for it!

    Go cut down a god damned cherry tree, motherfucker! []

  9. Don't tell me the dweeb's lucky enough Chinese Malena over here picks him to whore for.

    It's okay to ask the reader to believe the impossible ; but please, not the improbable. []

  10. Da fuck's an ex whore ?! []
  11. Bullshit. I personally took a year to (rectinilearly!) traverse this Eastern Seaboard. No fucking way she worked all the jazziest houses before she was twenty-five, unless she's twenty-five in whale years or some shit.

    But whatever, I get it, bitch did a stitch or two in New Orleans or Atlantic City or who knows where, Pittsburgh. Is Boston on the Eastern Seaboard ? []

  12. Since they're using "trick" to describe punting they're stuck using "crossing" to describe... tricking. If robohitler re-introduces crucifiction for being annoying / the wrong color / whatever, they're probably going to call it... hm. Punting. Why not.

    Have you punted Jesus yet ? []

  13. Always a risk for pimps, to the degree they're generally better off giving the hotties away, as gifts, at the slightest provocation. At least, that's how the only successful ones I ever saw operated. It really makes no sense for the pimp to try and keep her, anyway, she's universally more trouble than she's worth, and besides, a pimp makes his money out of the workhorses, the used up, banged up old nags nobody wants to take home under any circumstances.

    What, you thought it was more glamorous than that ? Naw, sorry to disappoint. A pimp's a sort of sewer -- maybe a bottle opener at the very most, but aside from that brief moment good cunt's privately owned and privately circulated. []

  14. Style of lingerie popular at the time. Coullottes basically. []
  15. The problem's that this is now no longer the "gripping" and "authentic" story of Iceboy Slurp, "a self-made pimp" from "the street". This is now the story of some kid Frankie picked up from the gutter. His life, no longer really his, but really, truly hers, flows from that font, and sprinkles of that source. If she hadn't picked him up, he wouldn't exist ; if she had pushed a different way, he'd have gone, spinning, inconsequential top, teetering that way. The author just decapitated his character, and I suspect without a back-up plan in mind. []
  16. Again with "the book" ? What the fuck "number of things not even listed", she had two other women on all fours and shoved her fists into their cunts such that every thrust in her propagated down the tree ?

    Look that it's listed ; now what. []

  17. Again with the vague bullshit ? Seriously now, be explicit, it's supposed to be an explicit tract, what the everloving fuck is "a hell of a teacher" ? Footnote 119, bitch! (And howling shitballs, I'm in the hundreds with the footnote count ?!) []
  18. So did she take it in the ass a lot, or does the author simply lack propriety of expression ? []
  19. A) those don't heal in whatever's left of a week, so no fucken way she stood for it ; and 2) I've yet to meet a professional who appreciated this pubescent sort of marking even without the sponsor problem. But... who knows, maybe they're different on "the Eastern Seaboard", which is to say someplace I've been and this Indiana-Wisconsin-Milwaukee redneck's never seen.

    Speaking of which -- this junk is rapidly collapsing into the plot of Shampoo poorly re-done by a terrible writer. []

  20. If that were how this worked I'd never piss on my whores. Seriously now, how about sticking with what one actually knows about ? []
  21. From experience, this doesn't fucking exist. She might appreciate a good challenge, especially as applied on a young and innocent, hardy country buck ; but the woman whose "hate of men" survived half hour's hands-on liberty's not yet born. []
  22. Alabaster doesn't keep a very sharp edge and readily grinds, so maybe that's not the best choice for a straw. I'm not saying they didn't do it ; I'm saying they're idiots. []
  23. Sadly cocaine's not really conducive -- other than being a mild anesthetic it's also a moderate peripheral vasoconstrictor, blood testosterone antagonist, and on the long term a terrible aging agent for the circulatory system. Pretty much the only group of males that receive some (minor, transient) benefit from perisexual cocaine consumption are the premature ejaculators, but even this is dubious because on one hand it also causes anxiety, which can mitigate the anesthetic effect and on the other hand premature ejaculation is a self-limiting affliction that readily resolves with practice, and cocaine can well interfere with this process and psychosomatically entrench the problem. None of this is relevant for the girls, which is why the bowls are there at parties, but really : it's for them, not for you. []
  24. Pure cocaine is the apanage of the well experienced ; an 18yo boondock snorting it straight would very likely die. This is no joke : cocaine is one of the widest tolerance drugs, such that long term users can readily take multiple grams in one go without complaint whereas a first time user can readily check out over a third of a gram. []
  25. Well... considering the alternative would've been sitting on a sidewalk... []
  26. Oh, really ? And why not, too many digits in dem dat eyqueue ? []
  27. Motherfucker, what "all" ? There's no fucking "all". List. Them. []
  28. By the sound of it she was paying in dust way the fuck more than the meat was worth.

    Dumb bitch didn't even think to ask her, "why me, Mistress ?", figure that shit out. []

  29. Gtfo, 18 yo straight out of the can ?! []
  30. Again ?! []
  31. Hand. []
  32. No dumbass, you should've ordered her on her knees, bubblin' dat butt out, and worn your belt down on her a few layers. Wtf. []
  33. Holy shit this nigga's worthless in a fight. []
  34. Freud Masoch, right, right. []
  35. I keep reading "Popper", as in Karl, which I confess is very disconcerting.

    Then again, poor K.P. didn't ever score as high as 187 or whatever it was, 12`500. []

  36. Heroin. []
  37. Infrenquent pattern of heroin use believed by future junkies to protect from addiction. An eminently self-limiting activity. []
  38. What the fuck ?! []
  39. Drugs, though in a prison setting it'd work for any contraband. But this being the big zone... []
  40. Since male shoes have a slight heel, there's a slight space. []
  41. Car. []
  42. Now ?! []
  43. This Nairobi-level shit is getting quite fucking disgusting, to be honest -- I mean for the same money why not just ask for an amulet. Who knows, maybe it works ? And if it doesn't work, maybe find a different shaman ? To unlock the black box labeled "that slick bitch Pepper" ?

    Fucking animists, how the fuck does ever-pululating Africa manage to ever reconstitute itself, anyways ? []

  44. Noticing it's raining only starts with IQs over 250. Thousand. []
  45. Doesn't sound like much of a junkie, does she. []
  46. I bet.

    He probably said, verbatim, "I'ma avoid you in a smooth way, Party." []

  47. What about... June ? That chick that loved him enough to do anything, up to and including turning a random old gambler trick in five minutes a mere coupla years ago, what ever happened to her ?

    Obviously, she didn't exist in the first place, not as described, which brings to fore the self-obvious question of just how fucking retarded is this fake lamer ? Seriously, so his derp-ass Mama, who one day just up and left "Henry" (ie William Beck) nevertheless magically knew things about the workings of the van, glory be ; whereas June just evaporated in the mists of May ? What works like this, besides the niggers' mental model of the poor black kid from the ghetto ? Huh ?

    Pshaw. []

  48. I had no idea this expression's over half a century old. I had figured it a relatively recent innovation of the Important Barristas Union. Then again, "manchild" is also older than the 90s... I guess I'ma have to confront the cold hard facts of the matter : that crowd isn't either creative or relevant enough to actually coin terminology. []
  49. Ahahaha. []
  50. And you wouldn't, of course, which rather is the problem.

    How much would you want, to lay a syphillis patient that died a week ago ? Because, here's the beauty of it : that's what $500 is worth. At the least.

    See, you're no better than this dumb fuck just because you won't do what he'd do. In fact... you're worse for it. If you understand about as much as he does but do less than he does, you're not a better man "for nobody can accuse you". You're actually worse. If he sells the bottle of milk for fiddy cents and you ask for fiddy million, the only effect (besides your milk turning sour undisturbed) is that your fiddy million will be worth fiddy cents. At the most. []

  51. I can, it's Dutchewski or whatever the fuck clever whitey name. "The detective" who, being "in a bad way" over some black chick in the 30s, saw no other avenues open before him besides scheming with a down and out pimp with a "stable" of four/three scrawny junkies to bring about the downfall of a black teenaged male jailbird with nary a clue an' nary a dime. The shit that passes for creative fiction in the ghetto... []
  52. By whom ? Guy-in-a-Buick's version of the bank of England ? Does this "best in the biz" loser at any point look like he could raise $500, to pay for the hole in case whoever he's guaranteeing for takes a powder ? That's what guarantees are, right, if whoever fails to cough up, Whisperin' Nonsense here will cover for him. Fiddy bucks for the old Buick, sixty bucks a head for three worthless whores... what's he gonna do, sell his only pair of underwear for a coupla hundy ? And... then what ? []
  53. Have you seen Gomorrah, by the way ? Pretty much the same yarn coming out of the same "silk" worms' ass, but weaved way the fuck better. []
  54. Here's a pro tip, from the guy who actually wrote the book (on everything, apparently) to the aspiring young minds who wish to know : if you gotta ask why, just walk away.

    This is a direct consequence of the "if you don't know who the sucker is at the table [to the point you have to have it explained], the sucker is you" rule, which you might've heard before but hadn't understood at all (no, bland repetition's got nothing to do with understanding, who knew), which in turn explains why it's fucking pointless to write books for dumbasses quite as thick. Books don't help blockheads, how the fuck would this book go, something like this perhaps :

    • I. Don't be a fuckhead.
      • I.1. If it's rainy outside, still don't be a fuckhead.
        • I.1.A. If it's rainy outside and the wind drives the rain, still don't be a fuckhead nevertheless.
        • I.1.B. If it's rainy outside, and the raindrops are really fat, still don't be a fuckhead anyhow.
          • I.1.B.1 If it's rainy outside, and the raindrops are really fat and they remind you of your childhoood still don't be a fuckhead nevertheless in any case.

    Something like that, would that count as the ghetto phonebook of detailed wisdom for morons ? I mean... it does at least explain how sense/"the world" relates to you, right ? Barely if at all. []

  55. Inasmuch as pressure rackets generally require muscle, they're usually not the province of hustlers, but of actual gangsters (a hustler's a wanna-be gangster, some kid who pretends to be tougher than he is on short stretches, direct transposition in this field of the beta mating strategy). Inasmuch as the "clever" retard is "creatively" lying, contradictory claims are du rigueur, because to the workings of the retarded mind they get better coverage. "A fast car from Brazil that goes underwater" sounds just like the ticket, notwithstanding that by the very fucking definition cars don't go underwater. Because the engine chokes. Because it's not made for going under water, it's made for something else.

    Oh and since we're doing definitions : a hustler's someone who believes hard work can compensate for natural gifts, and goes to great pains to try and actualize this delusion. Meaning that yes, you're all hustlers, the whole "Western democracy" dog-and-pony show is little more than Hustlers United Present. []

  56. Apparently also very poorly informed, a strange situation for a professional gambler. He could've just hit up Whisperin' Nonsense here, how hard could he have been to find ? I mean apparently he's in the Chicago Gangster Phonebook as distributed in New York, a 0-value kid fresh outta da clip can spot him alright and has no problem getting access, how hard would it've been for "Pepper's old man" to ask a few choice questions of Whispering Vespasian ? How hard would it've been for old Vespy to leave his corner Buick cafe for an hour or two while the shambling horrors hindered traffic and go talk to said old man on his own initiative ? It might've been good for a little money, which is certainly more than could be said of his "stable", yes ? Maybe even talk to Pepper first, see if she wants to throw anything into the pot before anything ?

    Seriously, "young pimp" looking for instruction, what is your answer ? Why didn't know-it-all run simple blackmail in the circumstances ?

    Let that be your homework ; and may you learn something by doing it. []

  57. That's not what pressure means, holy fucksticks.

    They keep arresting pressure racketeers here, let me recount for the rounding of this scrawny, junkie bullshit thread a coupla forms. There's the guys who rustle cattle, dressed as policemen, teams of dozen+, sometimes with actual stolen police cars sometimes with faked out police cars (often enough just without bothering). They show up on grazeland, pretend whatever nonsense, round up the cattle and leave -- it's pressure because whether the mark believes or doesn't believe, he's not about to start shooting at a dozen men pretending they're police : even if he's right and they aren't police, he's still just by himself, or with the dog, or with another guy and a kid, in any case they're not walking out of there. That's why it's a pressure hustle, because it doesn't so much matter whether the mark believes or doesn't, something most passionate hustlers despise, as they get their rocks off the (very limited, very narrow, and ultimately very unsatisfyingly crippled, but still -- it's all they got) personal interaction, the same thing I get naturally and in spades from my girls the passionate hustler gets torturously an' contortedly from his mark.

    For another form, some derpy chick, too stupid to make it in, regaled us as part of her evening failure with a story to show that indeed her stupidity runs in the family. To wit, her brother, who (for some reason I've forgotten) had acquired a decent bundle of cabbage, got intercepted while walking downtown by some guy who "wanted to make friends", which (according to him) consists of "exchanging gifts" (really, the story ran like "let me give you my card, which gotta be in this black bag, that's how it's done around here"), thereupon turning into "a plainclothes detective with the vice squad" threatening to "arrest" the chump unless he surrender his wallet. Pressure hustle through and through, shy "engineer" kid couldn't tell some built dude to take a walk, and that's when the matter was decided.

    Anyways, it's something you'll meet soon enough, seeing how US DAs are pretty much Pressure Hustlers, Incorporated, which is how anal queens a la Charlie Shrem (or you) usually end up taking it up the ass for the very first time. Then it becomes pleasurable, from what I hear. []

  58. Ahahahah this is so fucking stupid.

    Here's a pro-tip, or rather a bundle of them. First off, most rich old white dudes who pick up and "square" old whores (especially the very dominant sort that prefer hanging the pimp to paying him) don't give shit one about "women" in the naive, "reformist" deranged views of "Mama". In other words, I've yet to meet a jealous one.

    They will, however, often pretend jealousy, specifically because it empowers the woman. It sets up the double-cross, basically, you show up, "gather incriminating evidence" (which she's as likely as anything to actually notice, because duh ; but she's not likely at all to get in your way). Then she pretends shock and surprise and compliance as you demand of her, and then... she goes and tells the dude. Doh. And they'll have a good laugh at your expense, and even let you put a coupla of them slips in, at first, while sounding out "your organization". And then...

    What, you really thought "the world seen from your eyes" is something that matters to the world ?! Fuckwit. []

  59. Wait, wait. When did that happen. Doina, is that you ?! []
  60. And if Youngblood McShitforbrains balked, what were they gonna do ? I mean, the "trap was set" means someone spent some time and resources on setting it, right ? Presumably in excess of five hundred dollars' worth. What if this guy balked, what was that someone's plan ? []
  61. So is she in or isn't she ? What's your guess ?

    I mean, it could be that the agency play is there because she's not in, yes ? But it also could be because... she is. So... well, which is it ? Is she is or is she ain't yo baby ? 'Cuz she gotta let you kno'... []

  62. Odds are that whenever she'd call she'd make slurping noises, which in turn leads to... Odds are that whenever she did call she'd be in her jammies. Why the fuck would she then proceed to get dressed and drive across town, to meet some dweeb she otherwise couldn't be bothered to dress ? What was gonna happen in that bathroom anyways, a very uncomfortable blowjob ? Where, in the ladies' ? Or... the gents' ? What if someone wanted to pass Pepper a slip while she was ingurgitating a swipe, would she take a break ? Given her insider position ?

    Seriously, suppose the dame which came back with "and besides, as sweet as you are to this pussy, you don't need a suit" when he asked her for a little money also came back with "forget it bitch, and get your ass down here stat" when he told her to meet him at the fucking arcade. What then ? What was the plan, does he hang up ? Giggle first, and then hang up ?

    I can't seriously believe anyone ever called this trundle "slick". I've seen three-ton granite shards that were slicker nevertheless. Or wait, nevermind, it was "Iceberg" Slim not Slick. My bad. []

  63. What do you figure, is he being set up for the murder ? Or what kinda surprise party needs two hours to prepare ? []
  64. Guy actually died broke, liver failure associated with beetus, a few decades short of the hundred. []
  65. Da fuck, why ? Reality by pronouncement ? []
  66. Well she's labouring under the marked disadvantage of being a captive character held up by a very inept author in an extremely uncredible story. But whatever, here, "I told her I have to X and Y, which happens in Z, and it's either an hour after that if I take the bus or ten minutes if he gives me a lift." It'd maybe work like that, especially seeing how the chick does have a car (remember, the convertible) ; though if she's willing to go to so much trouble (as opposed to you know, simply calling another from her 6+ list -- a feat made all the easier by the fortunate circumstance that should she have forgotten who they were she could always call Whisperin' Nonsense to remind her ; he's easy to find, even fast gangsters from New York can manage the feat) then the hook is in, he just has to twist, and why the fuck would he sell her up the river like Steve, before squeezing the tit at all ? []
  67. Umm... []
  68. I don't know, does he mean an 18 yo vicious boy who's not had any in weeks sat there drinking rum in anticipation for a while then sat there while she was handling his penis for a while, and through all this didn't splooge any ? Or does he mean that yes he did, six or nine times, but it doesn't matter, because she's of the oppinion that he'll get it up just as good the fifty-sixth time that day ? Which exact part of common sense is being insulted, scorned and debased horrifically this time ? []
  69. I think this clever throwaway actually discusses people who learn a lot of minutious details of astronomy. Like a civil war buff is someone who remembers who was that idiot that charged all wrong and who his ugly mommy had him with. []
  70. Check out who's apparently famous for luxurious living! Wyatt Earp! []
  71. Sounds like run of the mill Midwestern "luxury", for once in their life middle class couple got to stay there and the young bride demonstrated her pancakes or whatever. Cute. []
  72. Yes, it's what cadillacs were called in the time-and-place. []
  73. Wait for the bullet rain that'll start falling once the people running the wheel start moving. That'll be the main show! []
  74. He means he got a shave, maybe even had his hair washed and the dirt scraped from under his fingernails ; and bought some clothes. Hopefully in that order. []
  75. Talk about land of opportunity. Everything else this dweeb's mouthing off about I've done, I'm doing, well, better. But never in Creation am I nor's anyone else gonna "o yeah, it was the early days of Nat King Cole, I paid a coupla bucks to be there". Other names, yes. Of course. But never that one.

    All other opportunities he might be wasting -- he sure as fuck didn't waste that one. Was it worth it, all the trouble he went to, all the hell he'll have to pay for those "five fat ones" ? Given that they're the fat ones that took him, "plenty clean", to that dance ?

    Now you understand the criminal mindset : yes, of fucking course it was worth it. YOLO. []

  76. See, this is what I don't get... why not just lift their skirts and play with their kitties, if that's what you're after ? []
  77. Strong, inescapable. []
  78. Aww.

    So what about "Mr. & Mrs Berkshire" or whatever ? If the kid wasn't there with the woman, how come he knows what room number some random people checked into ? And what time ? And if not with this one, which one was he there with ? For that matter, where was this one that time ? Seriously, nobody remembers a convertible Cadillac parked Arcades-side ? Nobody at all ?

    Public defenders ain't a good idea, everything's "iron" to them. []

  79. Da fuck's that mean, "wasn't now available". []
  80. Pocket. []
  81. Here's the problem : this guy, "a wealthy white fence and gambler", necessarily knows it ain't possible for a kid to turn all the shit he had stolen into a few hundred in cash within twenty-four hours. If nothing else, then because had he actually been invovled in the theft he'd know it was worth a lot more than that, and not likely to value time over cash so harshly as to take merely a few hundred for the whole bundle. Moreover, he'd assuredly keep something -- I mean he was dumb enough to keep the key ?!

    Kid's a patsy, Frank sees it, the judge sees it, they may not object to him going upriver for a spell, but they sure as hell ain't buying "the cross". []

  82. How come Dalanski knows about the kid's wad within six hours, but doesn't know about the hole he stuffs, at all ? []
  83. O yeah, check out how important this kid is, enough so for people to want him out of the way. Cuz everyone's Steve an' god's green earth's his Mama or somesuch shit. []
  84. As right & proper she should. The bird without scratch is fucking retarded. []
  85. Honestly this 1930s prison sounds a lot fucking better than 2020s plebeian life. []
  86. Hopefully we're out of the woods already. I was rather getting fed up with having to peel layers upon layers of bullshit obviously made-up to uncle up to all sort and manner of pompously pretentious nonsense "from the real world". Real nothing. []
  87. In a trained psychologist's terms,

    when your identity is strong enough nothing shames you, not a sex tape or a prison term, you'll take that scarlet letter and put it on a tight tank top and wear it ironically, not to mention hotly

    Or, if you prefer, in an actual Boss' terms,

    The moral being that society is not able to handle decisive people. It never was, it never will be, it simply can't. All that it can do is submit, trying its best to filter out and retouch the stronger contours wherever possible. In other words, society is the woman in the man-society relationship. If you let her make the rules she'll climb atop your head. If you go by what's coming out her mouth you'll end up drinkin tea in a miniskirt complete with stockings and garter belts. If on the other hand you grab her by the scruff of the neck and take her over the knee she'll happily suck your cock, glowing red butt and all. Basic stuff.

    It's what it is. []

  88. And what's so bad about that ? []
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  1. [...] By Robert Beck aka Iceberg Slim. Adnotated without permission. Chapter 1 -- Torn from the nest. Pimp. By Robert Beck aka Iceberg Slim. Adnotated without permission. Chapter 3 -- Salty trip with Pe... [...]

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