What was there a black market for at your school that wasn't drugs?

Bubble gum.

Some background information. My school district in central Illinois when I was a kid was notoriously controlling. The town was half-hardcore Republican and the other half-ultra hippie, so there wasn't exactly a nice mix of opinions. From the conservatives on the school board we got the cut Science budget, and from the hippies we got the bubble gum ban.

Right around the time the bubble gum ban went into full effect, there was a crackdown unlike anyone had ever expected. Teachers would be turning out pockets the second they saw anything suspicious. Kids were being wiped off the honor roll if they were caught. Claiming possession of bubble gum could sink anyone's reputation with the Principal, so it was quite an easy tool to bring somebody you didn't like down with you. That's where the black market came in.

While I wasn't aware of the operation till it damn well peaked, I knew of the hierarchy at its maximum extent.

At the bottom were the dealers. The dealers shipped out the bubble gum in any non-suspicious container they could fine, from the resealed Doritos bag or between two pieces of old homework. Pieces of gum were priced at around $1, and a whole pack could run up about $20 if you wanted the high-quality Trident kind.

Higher up were the movers. Movers brought the gum from the suppliers to the dealers. Typically, they gave the dealers the supply at the Little Caesar's just up the road. It was just outside the radius of the school's administration and it was a nice place to grab a bite before school. Discreet too.

Higher up than that were the suppliers. Suppliers give the profession too much credit. They just purchased the packs of gum at gas stations around the school's general area. They got a special cut from the dealers that was higher than both the movers and the head-honcho combined. Helped get a flow of money in.

The highest at the top was Andrew, who I called the head-honcho, mainly because I always wanted to call somebody a head-honcho. He named the gum's individual prices, organized the loyal people in his crew, and most of all, tried to keep the operation as low-key as physically people from the school.

The next year however, the whole black market was shut down when the bubble gum ban was rolled back by the board. Andrew's empire came crashing down with. Last I heard he made around $200 that year alone.

/r/AskReddit Thread