Ricky From the Dotte

BUSINESS

“We don’t want to separate the families so we will send them all back together.” Ricky mimicked the new president.

“What about you?” I asked from my perch a few bar stools away. I first met Ricky when I bartended at Dotlander’s in the old neighborhood, at the corner of 17th street and Central Avenue.

Ricky, a second-generation Mexican immigrant, is an extrovert, the guy who never met a stranger. He’s popular, gregarious, knows everyone who comes in the bar by name, and they all share unique handshakes. People trust him.

After high school, his cousin introduced him to drug sales. “You could say it was a family run business,” he said. “People keep bugging me to take them to it, so I eventually started making my own moves. I’m providing.” Ricky talked about it using the vocabulary of the business world. He compared it to running a distillery.

A cousin first introduced him to drug sales. “You could say,” he says, “it was a family run business. People keep bugging me to take them to it, so I eventually started making my own moves. I’m providing.” Ricky talked about it using the vocabulary of the business world. He compared it to running a distillery.

“It was a conspiracy,” he said when I asked him about getting caught. There was no actual proof. Instead the federales depend on a web of snitching. In a conspiracy, it takes two people to commit a crime. “Hey, Anita, let’s go rob a bank,” he says by way of example. Now there are two of us. “In my case, I told younger people how to set up their own businesses. Boom.” He shrugged. He was arrested and thrown in jail.

According to Jamal Hagler for the Center for American Progress, “one in six Latino males” born in 2001 will be imprisoned. “By contrast, only 1 out of every 17 white males is expected to go to prison” (28 May 2015).

Six o’clock one morning, someone pounded on his front door. Fearing a robbery, he grabbed his Mossburg 9MM shot gun. Two more pounds and the door flew open and the DEA poured into his living room.

He wasn’t a user, so there wasn’t a lot of paraphernalia around. Still, he says, “you begin to feel powerful and untouchable.” He was surprised even though he expected it. From his warm bed, he went directly to the county prison. But it could have been worse. Had it been a robbery, both he and his wife could have been killed.

Author: Anita Leverich

In real life, I teach English at an urban community college in Kansas City. This semester I am living the Dream--Writing! This is all thanks to that savior of the academic--The Sabbatical. One part of my sabbatical mission is this blog where I intend to share my thoughts on, not only writing, but also the world. This beautiful life has been built on education--a BA in English Literature, an MA in Literature & Creative Writing from Kansas State U. and an MA in Creative Writing from the nationally rated program at The University of Montana. I’ve also earned a Certificate in Creative Nonfiction from the Stanford Online Writer’s Program. Not only have I been privileged to work with generous and thoughtful teachers, but I’ve also worked with Editor Barbara Jones in the One Book program at Queens University. The other part of my time between now and August is dedicated to finishing the manuscript I have been working on all these years (!) called Running After You: An Unrequited Love Story. Thanks for tuning in. Enjoy.

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out / Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s