The World’s Worst Gangster?

“I’m gonna take my weed with me to court yeah, show dem police are fucking lying yo”. Jay isn’t the sharpest legal mind. I advised him that it’s probably not a good idea, but he was adamant.

The thing is, the shit the police were using as evidence against him was nothing like the weed he sells. He was mainly annoyed that the police were defaming him as a seller of lower quality grade.

Jay insisted that if the judge recognised his weed to be different to that taken as evidence of his dealing, he’d get off the charge.

Between weed and a hard place

He isn’t the most successful dealer. He deals because nobody will employ him, except the odd take-away needing a delivery driver.

It doesn’t help that he carries a conviction for assault police. He was certain he shouldn’t have been found guilty. You see the police were in his house and he wanted them out, so he kicked one of them and pinned the other against the wall. “They shoulda left, yeah?”

So he was found guilty despite his protestations about what constitutes reasonable behaviour.

And so, as an alternative to poverty, he exists in the shady world of illicit business. He doesn’t fare well. Shortly after I first met Jay, he had been stabbed and beaten. By his cousins and their mates. Someone had said something to someone… or something.

There was no retaliation from Jay, just resignation.

Not the smartest gangster

Sometimes he uses his whip to deliver food, other times to deliver weed. It’s his pride and joy. Until one day. “Yo man dem burn up my car yeah…” starts the story. The first formulation was that his neighbours did it. Jay took great joy in driving around with his speakers blasting out. And that was it. For certain. They got so pissed at his noise that they poured petrol on his car and set it alight.

Still, insurance, yeah? New car. He was back on the road in no time. Until the next time. A week later, the same thing. Middle of the night, noises, look out the window, car on fire again. The second story was that someone had said something to someone, or something. And they definitely did it, the rival dealers. Or something.

Jay’s a bit tragic. He’s hilarious in his tragedy. He’d knocked two lads off their moped. Learner, one riding pillion. He’d driven away from the scene – “fuck dey doing gettin in front of me, yeah. Anyway, you can’t have two riders when you on a learner yeah, so did nu’ing wrong yeah”. To be fair he informed the police the next day. Nobody was hurt, nobody complained. Over.

The Whacky World of Jay

He’s hilarious in most ways. Apparently 60% of prostitutes in Portugal are transsexuals. And all of them in Manchester are. You can argue with him, but it’ll fall on deaf ears. You’ve really got to just sink in to the entertainment of an encounter with the Whacky World of Jay.

He’s as kind and gentle as they come, constantly blessing anyone he encounters. But should any of his mishaps or business interests make the media, the sweet young man he is will be replaced by the monster that is the media folk-devil.

The thing is, there aren’t really many options for a man in his mid-20s like Jay. That became more apparent the last time I saw him. A story appeared on the television news ticker. We all gasped and we took in the headline. So Jay read it out aloud. Slowly, incorrectly and then not at all… before looking confused and asking what the words mean.

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