Lil Wayne's "Sizzurp" Habit Is the Hustler's Choice | The Fix
facebook twitter RSS
HOT TOPICS: Alcoholism  Addiction  AA  Cocaine  Heroin

Lil Wayne's "Sizzurp" Habit Is the Hustler's Choice

Cough syrup, which the rapper says had him hooked, is considered an acceptable high among street dealers, while crack is frowned upon.

Image: 

Lil Wayne quit sizzurp last year. Photo via

By Jeff Deeney

10/12/11

| Share

Yesterday 29-year-old rapper Lil Wayne publicly admitted what anyone with a passing familiarity with his work—such as the song Watch My Shoes, which contains the line "Syrup got me slow, like a turtle"—already knew. He's got a problem with the "sizzurp," or "purple drank," as codeine and promethazine cough syrup is known down South. And it was listening to the lyrics of UKG rapper Pimp C—who died of a sizzurp overdose in 2007—that got Lil Wayne started on his own addiction, he says. Cough syrup has long been the hustler's preferred high. It's considered among drug dealers as a manageable alternative to harder, more addictive opiates like heroin. Hustlers need to keep up the appearance among their street associates of having their substance abuse under control, in order not to be considered a liability who can't be trusted with large quantities of drugs and money. You would never front a kilo of coke to a dopefiend who runs needles—a hustler who smokes blunts all day while tippling codeine syrup and eating Xanax like they're Tic Tacs is considered more trustworthy and reliable. Cough syrup is just as popular in the North as the South: in the big East Coast cities it's known on the streets as "water"—or as "pancakes and syrup" when it's taken in combination with Xanax. Public perception is that street drug dealers aren't addicts. But social workers in the criminal justice system routinely page through casefile after casefile of corner hustler biographies that tell you it's not the case. Certain drugs are off limits for dealers: crack use, particularly, is a big taboo. (Remember the Notorious B.I.G.'s Ten Crack Commandments: Never get high on your own supply.) But syrup, pills, blunts, wet—basically anything that doesn't get lit on the end of a glass stem or put in a syringe—is game on. And the hustlers hit it pretty hard.

Rehabilitation Directories

Most Popular
Sober Living
Suboxone: Trading One Prison Cell for Another

Suboxone seemed like a get-out-of-jail-free card, the answer to my opiate addiction. Instead, I had a new ten-year addiction, complete with thinning hair and lost motivation.

The Rehab Review
Cliffside Malibu
 
 
 
 
 

The “beach-house-relaxed” Cliffside Malibu claims to provide an oasis for recovering addicts and alcoholics. And that’s just what you'll get—if you’ve got the cash.

Morningside Recovery
 
 
 
 

For a “rehab near the beach” experience that isn’t quite as costly as similar SoCal competitors, head to this Newport Beach treatment facility.

AToN Center
 
 
 
 

Whether you’re interested in the 12 Steps, SMART Recovery, or holistic treatments, this luxurious, appealing and commendable 4.5 star (our system doesn't yet show the 1/2 star) San Diego rehab has a program for you. 

Reflections
 
 
 
 

This exclusive Northern California rehab is all about client choice—as well as golf outings, Buddhist field trips and keeping up with the office.

Capo By The Sea
 
 
 
 

Capo By The Sea offers an executive rehab program complete with medical detox and a focus on dual-diagnosis issues, as well as an outpatient option in an environment that exudes the kind of beach house optimism one would expect from an Orange County recovery outfit.

Journey Malibu
 
 
 
 

Want many of the luxury amenities A-listers have come to expect—including an enormous backyard with a pool and patio, an herb garden, a volleyball net and a spectacular vista of the Santa Monica mountains—with a recovery program to match?

The Ultimate Guide to Rehab
 
 
 
 
 

What you need to know when choosing an addiction treatment center.

the fix tv