Meet Mr. B
Meet Mr. B: It was January 15th, 2009. Imagine you are at a newspaper stand in a busy transit station, and you meet a washed-up rock star who was going through an alcoholic meltdown.
You are always looking to get promotion for those books you got published VIA Google search, but the Canadian media is stuck in a 1950’s time warp, where those online books are not considered mainstream.
Our friend, the rocker, let’s call him Mr. B, is tall, broad-shouldered, long-faced with curly brown hair, and well dressed. Oddly enough, he wore a Gucci watch and bowling shoes too.
Mr. B came from a prominent Canadian family who were part of the Muskoka well to do. Mr. B had been in the music business for thirty years, playing bass, drums, and guitar for many major music superstars.
But no one knows him. Why? He likes being under the radar. In fact, Mr. B has ghostwritten six Grammy-winning songs, including the song Live Life like you were Dying (Such a scandal for the Grammies! A show aimed at an older audience, and it has the low ratings to show for it.)
Any hoot, this distinguished gentleman had a private jet, a recording studio in Muskoka, and was part owner of a major staging company. However, he was cut off his fortune because he had a calamity with a fashion model in 2008, making him an outcast from his social circles, and forbidden from entering his three 8 million dollar mansions in the Toronto area. “I have three ex-wives,” he told me, “I love them all equally. I have no favorites.” Lucky him!
Mr. B promised drama, which led him to the east end of Toronto, where he was holed up in his grandmother’s residence. On his blackberry was a list of all the prominent people, all the who’s who in entertainment and government. “I am a member of the one percent,” he would say offhand, “My father would drill that into my head since I was a kid.” The pensive man would stop to smoke a cigarette, “you don’t hold it against me because I have some bucks? That I come from money? Do you?” He would then exude a dog-like smile and expanded it into a grin of delight.
“No, not at all, sir,” I said with polite non-enthusiasm. Such a moment made me reflect on how life put me on the path with such a character. Mr. B was so far gone with his drinking and cocaine abuse he had befriended the local Dial a Bottle man. He saw significance in every encounter. Yet, his mind was filled with games, looking desperately to play with people’s heads. He ate little and spoke a great deal, always looking for the truth yet hiding behind alcohol, drugs, and lies. Being a big liar, too, Mr. B. would still appear as if he was going through the motions as if he had the experience.
“I don’t know who my friends are,” he would ponder out loud, swaying backward and forwards, “prove your friendship and that you are not a poseur. Buy me a twelve-pack of beer with a pack of cigarettes. And I might put you on the payroll.”
It’s a big name company. He calls at all hours, promising employment. This whole ordeal led me to an east end crack house. He was there for weeks, begging me to come, but when I went, I couldn’t get him to leave. One day, he has another demand. He mentioned a big name, big-name superstar, who he had ghostwrote songs for. “She needs background singers,” he said in a matter of fact type way, “I, therefore, need background singers. I am going to record her next album.” He looked to me for this need. I don’t know anyone. Through some freak of nature in the stagehand circuit, I had an acquaintance who was a background singer.
Luck would have it; it didn’t work out with Mr. B. “She nearly killed me with the Jamaican Tequila,” he lamented later on the phone. So that ended badly. I search my contacts some more, and I came across someone I worked with along the way; they had a monthly meet up for aspiring singers and people in the industry. I called her up and explained the situation. I don’t know if I sounded believable. No one believes a 5 foot 9 soft-spoken sort, but this person knew me. Eventually, I had a list of four singers. I called one up, met her, and explained the situation.
Then I organized a chance occurrence in a bar, where Mr. B was introduced to her. Oh, such playacting! He got to know her. The next time, I did not explain anything to the second singer, and she did her thing for him. Without warning, that Scarborough resident came across as a diva, and she got angry about it too. Yes, someone called me up to scream at me for that one. In the meantime, Mr. B. found a late-night TV Sex Therapist to amuse him. Let’s call her Miss X.
Miss X advised people, her clients, how to inject better sex into their love life and relationship. She was a syndicated columnist, had a radio show, and authored many books, all on how to improve one’s sex life. Yes, sex, sex, and sex! She never, however, encouraged safe sex or warned about the transmission of sexually transmitted diseases. I saw their private emails, suggesting Miss X was married twice, and she lived with her then unemployed American born husband and two adult sons from a previous marriage. Her present relationship was said to be dead, yet he was in another room, sleeping in a separate bed. Mr. B had an emotional affair with Miss X. “You’re sleeping with your husband,” he accused her once or twice. “You are LYING TO ME! I KNOW IT!” he roared into his blackberry.
“No, I’m not,” she would fight back, “The marriage is OVER, and he is out of my life.” Out of her life, but in the next room with no prospects.
“You lie,” he squeals with a falsetto of rage, as he drank some more beer. They continued their phone and text relationship. All the while, I am working as a stagehand and as a crew member on film shoots in the entertainment industry.
Remember, Mr. B would promise the moon to me just to get me to buy him beer and cigarettes. He was all over YouTube. Some of his promises were otherworldly too! When the superstar he toured with retired in 2004, Mr. B’s life fell apart. The music man was said to do the bar circuit in New York, where he spent one thousand dollars a night on alcohol, both alone and with strangers, or anybody. Thus, Mr. B had cancer, poseurs, and was in another alcoholic scourge. He went into the hospital and was told he would be dead in six months.
There was a fifth floor in the hospital, and it was called the deathward. At 5 am, all the doors would lockdown, and the dead would be removed. At that time, he went through every chemotherapy treatment imaginable. He recalled his skin color changed and hung right off of him. He fought it, fought the users, told all the poseurs to get lost, left, and in June of 2005, he was told he had survived. Mr. B then went back home, up north to Muskoka, to Lake Roseau, where he remained until 2007. In time, he returned to society and tried to reintegrate into society, but in 2008 he had a thingy ordeal with a fashion model. His grandmother told me that Mr. B began to live with her from 2008 onwards. Lots of people would always come to visit him, but she kept them away.
Mr. B was a lonely, tormented person, often complaining he did not know who his real friends were. “When I get hold of my fortune,” he would tell me many times, “when I get hold of my fortune, you are going to be put on the payroll.” But I had to do one more thing, always…Get more beer. While he was on this emotional affair with Miss X, he would ride the subway train for free. Why? He had no money. “I lost my wallet,” he would tell the transit officials, who were surprisingly very understanding about his situation. So he rode public transit like he was on a world tour. He would introduce himself to countless women, tell them who he was, and a wave of amazement would ripple all around him. He was a fixture at Hemingway’s bar, all the Rosedale Starbucks, and Sassafraz in the Trendy Yorkville area of Toronto.
One day, we met at a patio lounge in the Harbor Front area of Toronto’s waterfront district. “Do you know Toronto only has one five star hotel?” he would say to me, showing off a beer I don’t know how he would pay for.
“What’s it called?” I would ask.
“Hazelton Lanes Hotel.” I shook my head. “It is the only Five-star hotel for the Super elite in the city of Toronto. Other cities have more than just one Five star hotel. Can you believe that?!” Oh, the rich with such tales of woe!
After such a misadventure around town, this free spirit would go back to his Grandmother’s home in the east end like a broken man. From the oblivion, Mr. B would romance a woman newscaster from a major Canadian network. Like him, she had been in the business for thirty years. Since I work in the industry, I find I don’t get starstruck with such people. She was in her mid-fifties, part Jewish like him, or so he said. She came from a wealthy Canadian family, her father was an ambassador, educated in Europe, and trained as a stage actress in Britain, but her parents forbid her from a life in the theatre because they equated the performance lifestyle with exotic dancing. So she became a newscaster. How is that any different?
Both Mr. B. and the newscaster bemoaned the next generation of trust fund types that resided in the uptown scene. How do the famous greet one another? One of them mentions some names of maître d‘ headwaiters from all the finest restaurants. Only then, an association would be formed. You’ll thank me for that tidbit someday, you will.
I tried to make her aware of his living arrangements. I don’t think she believed me. “Is this in the vaults?” she would quickly ask, looking at me with cunning and dislike. She then wanted to know my DOB, residence location, and if I had a broker for my financial portfolio. Boy, she was talking to the wrong person. In fact, she sounded like a CIA operative, not the affable TV personality we all know and love. Well, after one year and half of this roller coaster ride, Mr. B entered a crisis. Both women found out they were vying for the same man. To add humor to the situation, the newscaster even mocked the production value of the Sex. Therapist’s nightly show, causing it to be eventually be revamped. Out of the blue, both women charged Mr. B with criminal harassment. It was all kept hush-hush.
Finally, the police took the celebrity into custody, and they got him help. This was June 6, 2010. I would not see Mr. B until December 2010, when he was sober. In that time, his whole appearance had undergone a complete change. The musician was dressed like an aristocratic, much like a character from F Scott Fitzgerald’s Great Gatsby. His clothes were tailor-made for him, including his trousers and silk pink dress shirt. That handmade collar was wrapped around his neck. His jacket and shoes were big labels splendid too! This Rosedale resident even made a point of announcing this aspect as fact, narrowing his eyes with distrust and shining his teeth at me. His Gucci bowling shoes were gone. Oddly enough, he offered to pay for drinks. The Rock Star would then get up to get a drink but spun around because an element of suspicion darted through him. “My blackberry,” he remarked with smugness, “has a lock on it.” Somewhere along the way, I learned he had three Yorkville psychiatrists to see in his recovery process. Cheaper to have a blog!
In January 2011, he introduced me to Tony, a former 80’s Degrassi Actor. This thespian was age 39, ready for the next decade. At first, he was dressed in street clothes. Tony was short with a mischievous air and was always trying to win a smile out of people like he was play-acting on TV, showing off his new teeth when he hadn’t acted in twenty years. This television star was too nice, too perfect. Those grotesque smiles made him come across as almost diabolical. He was always behaving in an uncommon dignity and sense of self-esteem that would never match the circumstance. He had a show of faces on display but settled with a stage presence type personae to add to the effect. At first, this once-famous man would sit erect, attentive only to Mr. B, sending his gaze to scan the entire establishment with an exaggerated sense of self-importance.
The Rocker, Tony, and I would go to the AA meetings. This was done to help Mr. B feel he was on the right track to rehabilitation. I got to know that all over Toronto, AA meetings were held in every available church basement. AA had no membership fees, no names. All was required was for people to come to meet, share their experiences, and keep sober. I tried to get to know Tony, who was openly gay and a practicing Buddhist. He occasionally worked as a food server at an area cafe chain. I remember him complaining about the tests required to work for a coffee house. I heard of no such thing, but to him, it was real. In time, Tony morphed into a yes man type, exuding that unique, repulsive smile that was supposed to be the height of gratitude. He would always supply an endless amount of cigarettes to the Rocker, even in the full knowledge that our musician friend had cancer. I knew nothing about Toronto’s Gay Village, but Tony gave me an education on that area of the city. The 80’s television star perceived that I projected a vulnerability of apprehension towards him, his body language, and ideas.
That being said, we rendezvoused at Roxborough and Yonge Starbucks, where Tony continued to showcase an array of forced smiles, all showing him with mock shock, dismay, and surprise, all from his fiendish countenance. “I’ll send you the White Light,” he weirdly promised, only adding to my suspicions. Washed up TV actor/ Theater performer! Poseur Buddhist!
In February of 2011, Tony began to use his choice in orientation in every way imaginable to win favor from Mr. B. He would continue to go in this direction, all leading to a flawed argument on February 19th, 2011. Right there and then, Tony revealed that he shared the bed with Mr. B many times while they slept. How this news was delivered was meant to goad an angry response out of me. It must have been the blow. All I know, cocaine does a lot of strange things, so I am told. Mr. B had that for a demanding mistress too.
In such a circumstance, Tony got me to condemn him, his lifestyle right in front of Mr. B, who regarded me with indulgent amusement. There was a moment of silence and reflection amongst the friends. The Rock Star was very elegant, cool, and quiet. “Really?” he would remark with an element of surprise. “You’re morale,” he would continue, “you’re old fashioned!” he would add, snapping his fingers at me with dismay and disgust. The well-traveled man would then smolder with blackness, while the other gleefully conformed to the new social dynamic. Unknown to me, these performers had a global eclectic relationship. Mr. B. had maneuvered and navigated through many such situations, always leading to conflict resolution. He moved back his head. “You have my father’s point of view,” he exclaimed, setting his teeth into position. “You’ll get nothing out of me,” he said with finality, leaving a cloud to settle over us three, dividing me from their reality.
In fact, it wasn’t about the lifestyle at all. At first, it was getting Mr. B into rehab twice; the first time, he failed, and the next time was successful. Tony and Mr. B made the mode of living the issue when it was not part of the picture before. Thus, this goes to prove a good enemy will make you understand their point of view; while they help you slit your own throw. A slow and painful death would ensure the conveyance of their mentality. Such an individual could accomplish such a feat, quoting Buddhism, or scripture, aglow in the eyes of public opinion.
Over the next few months, I did meet with these two men repeatedly, but the argument in February had cemented a rift in our relationship. None of them knew about the roller coaster ride to get Mr. B into rehab. When drunk, Mr. B consumed me beyond belief. In the past, I found him to be a demanding person, never happy, and always wanting more. Never having enough. Mr. B possibly lived thirty years in the fast lane, jet-setting around the world, going through relationships as fast as he wanted and ending them without warning. Maybe it was my lower station in life that was the grand divide. Well, Mr. B did get control of his fortune on June 6th, 2011. He invited me to his trendy Rosedale Starbucks and made a show of the fact that he had hired Tony, who assumed a fashionable air, which he instinctively felt high society would require. For that whole year, I pondered that dark secret that Tony had. Yes, he was openly gay and used it to his advantage in every way imaginable. Tony did act in 80’s Degrassi, but there was something about him behind that grotesque smile, shrouding a part of his personality in mystery. He would always try to win a smile out of people, hug them when he met them, but that mask that he hid behind would haunt a nightmare.
On September 1st, 2011, Mr. B. called me up, wishing to meet. In an hour, we sat across from each other at King and Yonge Starbucks. He had an arched look. No one showed any interest in the conversation. He actually began to play with his blackberry with a fidgety sense of indignity, grew irritated, and suggested we relocate ourselves on the outside patio. This new vantage point faced a busy high traffic thoroughfare and sidewalk area. Once again, we were unable to substantiate any sense of conversation. An element of disappointment filled the air. I looked back at him with untired eyes. Out of the blue, I struck up an exchange with an African Canadian lady situated beside us. This Downtown Spiritualist was a middle-aged woman, intending on leaving her job as a bookkeeper to start a business, all to teach intuition in the Annex area of Toronto. Right there and then, Mr. B. got an important call, excused himself to lurch forward, and have a private conversation. “I was told to be here,” said the woman beside me. “I was told to be here.”
“What’s that?” I asked.
“I was told to be here,” she answered, “I was told to be in this exact spot, at this time, not inside, but right here and right now.”
I digested this communication with a moment of contemplation. If she teaches intuition… “Are you an Indigo Adult?” I asked, hoping I was correct and not ready to explain my offbeat reading interests.
“Yes, I am,” she answered with an elevated sense of speech. “You can call me an Indigo Adult. I don’t mind at all.”
“See him?” I said, pointing at Mr. B., who still chatted on the phone, “He attracts a lot of questionable characters, those I wouldn’t choose to be around.”
“If he’s creative and intuitive,” she reasoned, sipping a green tea, “then he has all the hallmarks of being an Indigo Adult.”
An interesting point of view, I mused. “Really?!”
“Jimmy Hendrix was the same.”
“Hendrix was Indigo?”
“He was very intuitive and creative,” she mused, “Jimmy Hendrix was what you call an Indigo or a realized soul.”
A fascinating point of view! With that in mind, I gestured the other to return. “I just got off the phone with my partners,” he announced.
“That doesn’t matter,” I remarked, vacating the seat and suggesting he sit beside the Down Town Spiritualist.
“What do you mean that doesn’t matter,” he laughed quietly to himself, assuming my position beside the medium. “To talk with my partners is important!”
I introduced them together, and they seemed very pleased to begin a friendship. I explained the Indigo phenomenon. She looked to the One Percent and said: “You’re an Indigo, Mr. B.”
“I do have prophetic dreams,” he agreed with momentary discomfort and annoyance. I looked at them both as they plowed deep into conversation. I encouraged them to form such a friendship. “She’s like a social worker,” I told him another time. “She’s your new social worker type friend!”
In the past, I directed commercials. I recently directed a documentary on youth violence, which was screened in England, but at that time, I mainly worked as a grip in film and TV circles. However, I did also work as a stagehand on the occasional rock concert or even corporate set up.
In the fall of 2011, I worked on a big film union show. I labored two eighteen-hour days. On the last day, a shock came. It was late; everyone boarded the five-ton truck and sat in a semi-circle in the vehicle’s back office area. There was not much light in this area, but I could hear them sit, opening up some beers. It didn’t take long for cannabis to be in the air. I didn’t see any faces, but I knew who they were and heard their conversation. “So where did you get your shit?” someone asked another.
“Ah, greatest export from Western Canada to Toronto, which is the center of the universe!” Everyone said an Amen in unison with a chuckle.
“Thank the Lord!” exclaimed another.
“Yes, by the word ‘lord,’ you mean Lord Black!” added someone else, which led to a moment of snickering. At this juncture, one of the actors spoke about the local, underground drug scene in Toronto. Through the haze, I could hear this voice transcend the surroundings. “Just below Yonge and Bloor,” he said, “there is a center that supplies herbs, medical marijuana for Aid’s sufferers, or even cheap medication to people living with cancer.
“I think I heard of this store,” responded a woman. “Isn’t there a safe injection site there?”
A long silence ensued. “It’s known to police,” continued the voice. “The Vapor Lounge,” added the voice. “The Vapor Lounge Central Café, it is indeed!” Someone would suppress a laugh at that statement.
“Isn’t there a Degrassi actor from the ’80s who manages that place?” added a lusty voice, clearly recognizable from the rest, “Who did he play again? Was it Walter from 80’s Degrassi? I keep mixing up those guys!”
I could hear some drink and pass around the implements for blissful awareness. “There is another Degrassi actor from that era, and he’s gay.” My ears pricked at this mention. “What’s his name?” someone asked.
I felt a slight spasm, possibly a coming ailment to be solved by a chiropractor visit. “Who did he play?” they continued to talk.
“I don’t remember. Is he part of the drug scene too?”
There was the sound of another beer that cracked open. The tone of the conversation went to a lower decibel. “He sells the hard stuff.” All I could hear was the sound of my breath and my heart beating. “That place is known to the police.”
“So you say this guy is from 80’s Degrassi is gay?”
“Oh, yes. Eighty percent of the actors in Hollywood are gay. Who do you think gets all the work?” The group continued to nurse their alcohol and weed. “This Tony _____ deals the hard stuff,” the voice repeated.
“And that’s how drugs like heroin, crystal meth, and ecstasy land up on the streets of our city?”
“So you’re saying,” came a question, “If that center was raided by police tomorrow…-“the voice trailed off.
“It would cause an uproar.”
“Why?” demanded the others. “Why?”
“Its clientele is predominately gay, and they need cheap drugs to fight Aids. And this gay lobby would rage against the police for conducting such an outrage. Every level of government would feel the heat for this!”
This confirmed my suspicions about Tony. In the coming days, I went to the location. On the front window was a name and number for a local spiritualist and a giant poster that promoted a Buddhist master. Not long after, I met the Down Town Spiritualist at the Green Beanery in the Annex area of Toronto, located at Bathurst and Bloor. I explained what I had heard.
“Some people operate from a lower karmic level,” she spoke in an elevated nature, inspiring her with a sense of energy and confidence.
“I never thought it was that bad,” I told her, “I have no one else to tell this to!” I really have no one to go to about this!
“Some people operate from a lower karmic frequency,” she reiterated with a glow. “I will raise his karmic vibration naturally and then let him go, and Tony would then go off into the world.”
“Wouldn’t that make him into a killer?”
“No,” she answered, stopping to think that one out, “I don’t think.” She was unsure. “I will have to check the cards.”
“Well, he is a long time Meth Dealer,” I told her. She held firm, and I haven’t seen her since.
In the New Year of 2012, I finally found him on a Sunday afternoon, where he is a fixture even now. On the South West corner of Yonge and Dundas Square, I spotted Tony before a group of teenagers in baggy pants. He was quickly negotiating the sale of his goods. He had a hood over his head, and his face was blackened out from exposure. I knew it was him. I watched him on that Sunday afternoon until he completed his business. I continued to eye him. Just like that, he stopped and froze. His eyes seemed to start from his sockets. He must have realized I had seen him, but he did not know for how long. He remained motionless for a millisecond before continuing homewards, clicking his tongue like he was communicating with a squirrel. He sees this as a game! In the coming months, April 21st came. That day, I met Mr. B, who I soon informed of the latest developments. “He’s a drug dealer, man,” I told him, leaning on the table. “He deals the hard stuff.”
“Then why did he go with me to AA?”
“I don’t know,” I responded, “Why did he do that? Why did he do that at all?!”
Mr. B. didn’t look to his right side, which was the standard search mechanism for recalling memories but did otherwise. Maybe he knew all along? Mr. B. attracted many questionable characters, both men and women.
Several weeks later, spring arrived, and I received a telephone call. It sounded like an adult imitating a baby cry or a woman crying in a mocking type way. That did it! In the afternoon, I went to a food court in the center of the downtown core and wrote all the information regarding Tony, all my suspicions, and called Crime Stoppers. Rewarding a Meth Dealer was evil enough.
In the modern era, narcissists can be found everywhere. They will find people to use with vicious delight. Then they move on. They repeat their behavior over and over. And if you happen to be the recipient of such attacks and have a hard time getting over it, they will assume that you are the one with the problem.
Mr. B. had rewarded Tony, who had never received any residues for his prime time television work. In those days, that generation of the show was none union. This early stardom destroyed Tony’s childhood, his education, and he had to grow up awfully fast. He earned a livelihood through illicit means to substitute the lifestyle denied to him by that brief career in Canadian show business. This Doctor Jekyll and Mr. Hyde scored himself on the payroll of a major staging company through his method acting ability. Tony never left his old ways behind him. One will not have to look far to spot him downtown, all before a rave or a big event. I did inform Crime Stoppers about him, but because of his associations with a possible One Percent member, Tony is exempt from a criminal investigation, charges, and prosecution.
During the summer of 2012, a man matching Tony’s description was seen and involved in some attacks in the Kensington Market area of Toronto, including one stabbing murder that shocked area residents. The day after the murder, I saw that artful dodger glide from the oblivion. He had a fake beard, a set of brown rim glasses, and a sweater-clad type outfit. I thought he was hiding something again. He was walking in the direction of the area Buddhist temple that existed in the vicinity. Sometimes he would be dressed like a corporate executive or a street vagrant, always blending into the scene. You can find him in the Rich Tree Market Restaurant at College Park, inside and outside patio in a starched shirt and pinstripe suit. Or even outside, looking smooth while he chain-smoked, waiting for his Monday doctor’s appointment, which was across Bay Street.
It was all a game to him. Like Mr. B, he was a fixture at Hemingway’s bar, all the Rosedale Starbucks, all the Rosedale AA meetings, and Sassafraz in the Trendy Yorkville area of Toronto, always exclaiming that he is a Buddhist and is into meditation. This performer is always looking to keep the fast cash coming and the illusion of high living alive. See him on a Sunday afternoon at Yonge and Dundas Square on the South West corner in action, inside the mall’s main entrance, and outside of it, dealing drugs, where he is a fixture. You kill him, and you will become him.
So we come full circle. What if, by raising a person’s energy level, you activate a level of the brain that would unleash a person’s dark side, leading that subject to rape or murder. A Meth Dealer would operate on a lower Karmic frequency. You raise their vibration, and you have a monster, and Tony may not even be aware of this action at all. Suppose this happened to this specific individual when he was not thinking about it. He may have anger towards women, all suppressed, and this leads him to violence. He snaps out of it and doesn’t realize what he has done. If he does, or the police can connect the dots…maybe they know already?
Maybe his association with Mr. B is already known. Jack the Ripper was protected by the authorities in his time. The mafia crime syndicates have one hundred percent control over their money-making ways. The mob owns all the strip bars. Each bar has its own drug dealer to keep the girls hooked, shackling them to a life of servitude and keeping the money coming. The same goes for prostitution. The Drug Squad would never raid the Vapor Lounge Central Cafe. It is too much of a moneymaker for the crime bosses. Yes, it aims to supply cheap drugs to those who have Aids and cancer, but everyone knows this is all an illusion because the hard drugs somehow hit the streets. Its management team has one 80’s Degrassi Actor part of its ranks, giving the center an appearance of respectability.
To keep an eye on such an operation, government operatives must be part of its management team. One source suggests this center has police informants interwoven between the riff-raff. One wonders if this center’s LA division is any different. All I know is, if you want serious police work, don’t go to the Drug Squad. You will find serious police work in assault cases, domestic violence, or anything else, but not from the drug squad, which is only for appearance purposes, much like the Canadian Senate. But is this any different from any major American city?