Testimony from Stalingrad, What an addiction!







Life is harsh, painful and often sad; hence the need sometimes to give it an aim and a target. In order to make it more pleasant, some very often opt for habits or automatisms that finally end up being more problematic than relieving or anything else.

Addiction is the word commonly used to describe the state reached by a person who seems to live and exist only and solely through what has become his or her new habit. An automatism eventually associated with one’s life and existence.Addictions are of all types; very often depending on social classes, geographic environment or more simply on culture.


For people of my generation, born of immigrant descents, addiction to the weed of the poor , commonly known in the French capital under the name of « shit »or again hashish was to become a cultural phenomenon by the time we reached the age of 25. While the well off or the

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bobos, as we call them in Paris, were smoking what we considered effectless and inofenssive cannabis, we guys from the French ghettos were dealing with a much stronger version of the same substance.


Unlike the hard drugs that had taken many of our big brothers’ lives, these cathegorised soft drugs were then seen as easy accessible substances not at all destructive.Stalingrad, the cornerstone of all drug traffics in the French capital, was also the headquarter of all those who because of their addiction had transformed themselves into living ghosts; creatures only living and swearing through their addictions, be it cocaïne, crack or just heroin. What a drawing so sad it was for the youth of my generation to see the big brothers we once respected so much submit themselves to their weakness, and become physically weak and toothless.


My generation really wanted to write an other story of ours. However, the trap of the derived version of cannabis most of us had become so familiar with was not to let us decide otherwise. Unlike real weed or the pure cannabis smoked by Bob Marley and the Wailers in the big posters hanging on our bedroom walls, Shit was not weak, nor smooth. On the contrary, it was harsh enough a substance for the tough guys we wanted and pretended to be.


More than 20 years have passed now since people of my generation made their first acquaintance with the weed of the poor they have finally become so addicted to. What they have become to love more than anything else has more than once been the cause of psychiatric internments. The fact that today in my neighbourhood I cannot find any single shit-smoker who along all these years has successfully managed to really escape insanety makes me think that more than a lost generation, my generation is the generation of the mad man.

I also let you imagine how people like me feel today in front of all the on going French debates regarding the legalisation or not of cannabis. In stead of sincerely answering the issue, it seems that our politicians are more willing to opt for a decision that would alienate the masses a bit more so that they do not contest society and the political system by the same way. Just like their predecesors got rid of our big brothers in the 1980s and early 1990s by not dealing sincerely and seriously with the issue of hard drugs, the current politicians may find it more interesting politically to encourage cannabis adddiction in order to better tame the masses.


This message is, therefore, a warning. Silent but aware of my felow-citizens’ unconsciousness I write these few lines though I know silent and far away in their unconsciousness they cannot feel what I feel.


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