#9 CHICKPEAS

By J.J. Colagrande

Let me tell you what I know about the Falafia, okay? Basically, the Falafia are a seedy underground sect of headz that like to pull some shady-ass shit at music concerts. One might say there’s a lot of shady-ass shit no matter where you are. Well, these kids are even shadier. They deal in drugs, but hella chemie drugs like crystal meth or dirty taboo drugs like heroin. The dirtier, the meaner, the better. Also, the Falafia loves selling nitrous oxide. It’s cheap, they tax the gas, and it moves like crack. Remember how it effected Sky? That shit will take your innocence away. It will lead you astray. I know the bad stuff and the Falafia’s all over that shit and they won’t let anyone else hustle it, or else. Or else means those fuckers like violence. They might act like they’re all peace signs but they will fight and come at you hard. They represent a private force that gets their way. The Falafia or the nitrous mafia are the same dudes, just sometimes called by different names. They operate only at music concerts; if there’s a show in town, they’re banking buku bucks. Plus these cats are hella organized. They have a hierarchy, a totem, a chain-of-command. I’m not sure how high it goes, but it’s up there. Also, like organized gangs, these dudes have a legitimate business front. For these cats, it’s falafels. Don’t ask me why they sell falafels. Is there a connection to the Middle East? I don’t know. If they were the Italian mob, you’d imagine they’d be selling sausage and peppers, so I’m pretty sure the Falafia’s not Italian. Maybe the Falafia just loves chickpeas? I love chickpeas. All I know is they run the falafel stands at music festivals. No veggies, smoothies, ice cream, fried dough, or crepes. Just falafels. Maybe kabobs sometimes. That’s everything there is to know about the Falafia. And that’s what I schooled Teflon on. How do I know these things? I’ve been around, let’s leave it at that. Considering Teflon knew Thelonious, I thought he might’ve already known. Turns out Thelonious never said a word to Teflon. On the contrary, Thelonious was probably trying to protect his homeboy. The less Teflon knew, the better. Teflon’s a pretty good kid. But I knew. And it took me all of one minute to find out the 4-1-1. After Teflon realized I was milking the day, I dragged him back to Chow Town after hours. I walked right up to the dude working the falafel stand and asked where the party was. I acted like I knew and when you act like you know, people know you know what’s up. The falafel vendor looked me up and down for a sec and said the party was at the Hard Rock Hotel. There you go, that’s what Teflon wanted, the word on the street: head to the Hard Rock.

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