Pawn shops and addiction

by Stas Novitsky

Pawn shops are predatory. They knew I wasn’t in a good place pawning my TV, jewelry, computers, and bike every week, but they made the transaction anyway.

I would go to countless pawn shops multiple times a week and do the weekly shuffle there. After the pawn shop to my dealers and then to hustle money to buy my stuff back plus drugs. At one point I sold them a stolen bike my 65-year-old homeless using partner had “given” me.

My addicted self thought nothing of it, I just wanted to get high. Needed to get high. … Read more...

“Mom, I have nothing.”

That phrase weighed heavy on my heart when Charles said it over the phone on Monday, June 1, 2015. The feeling it inspires now is the same–my own despair.

He had pawned his computer and his bike. He especially loved that bike and he never rode with a helmet. Funny, how I worried about a head injury when what I needed to worry about was the enemy living in his head.

The bike was just a possession but it was his last possession and I felt its significance. How desperate do you have to be to sell your last possessions? … Read more...