Dope Culture: A Narcotic Guide to Learning Drug Slang

By Clarence Walker (

We live in a drug culture world. As tons of illegal drugs flood the streets across the United States, the slang terminology for "drugs aka dope" has become a serious challenge for anyone to decipher, not only for parents, but for law enforcement officers, public health officials, psychologists and criminal justice officials.

As “drug slang” modify different terms it must be understood that definitions for narcotics are important for various reasons.

For example, some drugs have "difficult to pronounce" names while others have typical sounding names that teenagers or young adults realize that if a certain word is spoken like “weed”—this kind of term will alarm parents.

By speaking in code language this allow teens to avoid using the obvious sounding names, and instead, discuss drugs in a more discreet manner. Experienced narcotic officers have said that code terms being use now may not be the same a year or two from now.

Who would’ve thought that even heroin is sometimes called Jerry Springer?

Designer drugs like Spice and Bath Salts and different kinds of ecstasy drugs have various slang terms as well.

Many slang terms revolve around what certain drugs look like. Therefore, this make the slang term for heroin of region-specific. Heroin's appearance can vary dramatically, depending which country or state a person lives in.

According to the United States Drug Intelligence Center, heroin is often sold as a white powder in the Eastern part of the U.S. - while it's sold as a black solid in the Western part of the country.

For instance, on the East Coast, heroin is called “china white” or antifreeze. On the West Coast, heroin is called” black tar” or Mexican mud.

Some slang terms for cocaine used on the streets are: snow, blow, flake, white, white girl, powder, marching powder, Charlie, coke or sometimes a user or seller will just use the plain letter “ C”—to refer to cocaine.

With a crystallized appearance, the phrases used for crack cocaine are: ready rock, rock, sticks, bump, or french fries.

Slang terms also refer to how drugs are used. Snorting or tooting involves a user sniffing a powdered form of a particular drug. A person who cooks will mix cocaine with water and baking powder to make crack cocaine. Any person who makes a coolie or a sherm, must lace a cigarette with cocaine.

This article outlines just a fraction of “hundreds of words” of "Street Slang" used for drugs illegally sold and used by casual users and addicts.

For the past few years, the US Government has had an official database of drug street terms that is "used by police officers, parents, treatment providers and others who require a better understanding of drug culture."

Pills have as many slang terms as other highly known drugs. For a list of “street lingo terminology” used for pills like Oxycontin, Oxycondone, Lorcet, Red Devils and Yellow Jackets—click on this link(

Below is a list of numerous terms listed in the Government’s drug policy database:
  • 2-for-1 sale: marketing scheme designed to promote and increase crack sales.
  • Acido Hallucinogens: LSD.
  • Al Capone Heroin.
  • Are you anywhere? Do you use marijuana?
  • Assassin of Youth: marijuana.
  • Bag Bride: crack-smoking prostitute.
  • Biker Coffee: coffee mixed with methamphetamine.
  • Bin Laden Heroin: (after September 11).
  • Blast: a stick: to smoke marijuana.
  • Bling bling: methamphetamine.
  • Cabbage Head: an individual who will use or experiment with any kind of drug.
  • Carpet Patrol: crack smokers searching the floor for crack.
  • Chalked up Under the influence of cocaine: this is only funny when sung to the tune of "Caught Up".
  • Chocolate Ecstasy: crack made brown by adding chocolate milk during production.
  • Christmas Tree Meth: green methamphetamine produced using Drano crystals.
  • Crack attack: Craving for crack.
  • Crisscrossing: the practice of setting up a line of cocaine next to a line of heroin. the user places a straw in each nostril and snorts about half of each line. Then the straws are crossed and the remaining lines are snorted.
  • Dinosaurs Populations of Heroin: users in their forties and fifties.
  • Explorers Club: group of LSD users.
  • Gangster pills: depressants.
  • Geezin abit of dee gees: to inject a drug.
  • Get off houses: private places heroin users can purchase and use heroin for a fee.
  • Ghostbusting: searching for white particles in the belief that they are crack.
  • Half a football field: 50 rocks of crack.
  • Half elbows: half a pound of methamphetamine.
  • Hawkers: individuals who walk through a setting (nightclub) announcing the availability of a drug (typically MDMA, GHB, or LSD).
  • Hitch up the reindeers: to inhale cocaine.
  • Hubba, I am back Crack cocaine.
  • Interplanetary Mission: Travel from one crackhouse to another to search for crack.
  • Jerry Springer Heroin.
  • Kate Bush: marijuana.
  • Liquid lady: cocaine that is dissolved in water and ingested as a nasal spray.
  • Loused: Covered by sores and abscesses from repeated use of unsterilized needles.
  • Macaroni and Cheese: $5 pack of marijuana and a dime bag of cocaine.
  • Movie Star Drug: cocaine.
  • Rave: all night dance parties frequently designed to enhance a hallucinogenic experience through music and lights.
  • Rock Star: female who trades sex for crack or money to buy crack; a person who uses rock cocaine.
  • Sandwich: two layers of cocaine with a layer of heroin in the middle.
  • Sextasy: ecstasy used with Viagra.
  • Shebanging: mixing cocaine with water and squirting it up nose.
  • Smoke: Canada Marijuana.
  • Star-spangled: powder Cocaine.
  • Taxing: charging more per vial depending on race of customer or if not a regular customer.
  • Tutti-frutti: (Portuguese) Flavoured cocaine.
  • Twin Towers: heroin (after September 11).
  • Up against the stem: addicted to smoking marijuana.
  • Whackatabacky: marijuana.
  • Zoomer: individual who sells fake crack and then flees.

Clarence Walker is a  Houston Texas-Southeast Arkansas-based veteran newswriter,  investigative journalist,  research specialists,  and news media analyst. This author also works in the PI industry and runs his own specialized writing/marketing service. As a freelance story research producer, Mr. Walker has assisted Entertainment Production Companies to produce "true crime shows" for Cable TV programs like ID Discovery Channel and TVOne "Fatal Attraction"  episodes. He has written about criminal justice and social justice issues,  organized crime, national and international drug trafficking, drug policies, murder investigations, cold case homicides, politics,  history, human interest, and consumer news articles. Walker is currently working on a book titled: America's Dope Game. 

Author Clarence Walker can be reached
PS: For more information on "drug slang" in alphabetical order go here:
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