People Discuss What Was Sold on the “Black Market” in Their Schools

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I had a friend (who shall remain nameless) that had his hand in seemingly every illegal activity in our high school.

Fake IDs, selling weed, buying beer, etc. You name it, he did it. What a guy!

And it seems like there’s always one kid in school who is running things like my friend was.

I guess you could say that all schools have some kind of a “black market.”

Here are some interesting stories from AskReddit users about what was going on in their schools.

1. I know a guy…

“In high school there was this game/fad where people would try to stealth zip tie other people’s bags to their desks, shoes together, whatever so they’d be stuck when the bell rang.

One guy sold the heavy duty zip ties and another sold mini scissors for easy escape.”

2. Soda and Pop Tarts.

“In my ninth grade English class, there was this kid who would bring soda and Pop-tarts to class and sell them.

We weren’t allowed to eat in class, so I had to eat my chocolate fudge Pop-tarts discreetly. Eventually, the teacher put a stop to it, but it was a good run while it lasted.”

3. Scammer!

“I literally sold stretched-out, dried baby wipes for two quarters apiece.

Baby wipes get super soft when they’re dry (or at least that brand did) and my classmates were fascinated.

I claimed to have sewn these mini blankets myself. It worked for the entirety of third grade before I got called out and canceled in fourth.”

4. The big time.

“Back in elementary school, more specifically the last couple years, it was all about mechanical pencils.

Having a lot of them was a symbol of power and wealth and trades would occur based on how desirable the mechanical pencils were.

However, if you had a really unique mechanical pencil, this was seen as even more powerful than having an abundance of mediocre ones. Theft would occur here and there and this stirred up the tension.

Classes were formed and social circles were reflective of this.”

5. Get rich quick.

“Me and my friend had several “get rich quick” schemes that never paid of. A few that come to mind:

We got the idea of breeding my and his dog to get puppies and sell them. So he brought his dog over and we locked them in my room to get the deed going. After about 30 minutes we got talking and realized both our dogs where castrated, and males… So we dropped that plan.

Second plan was when my older brother got a surround hi-fi stereo in his room (this was 1999 so that was still somewhat uncommon). Me and my buddy charged a fee for people to come and watch movies “cinema style” at my house.”

6. You got the stuff?

“There were two kids who just happened to have parents who owned liquor stores in the town.

One kid started taking stuff from their parent’s supply, and selling it out of his backpack. Other kid caught wind of it and figured he should get
into the game too.

Honestly, the other kid finding out was the best thing for me because the market adjusted just like it should have.

Kid 1 was selling warm monster energy drinks for $5. New kid came in and sold em for $4. Kid one came back with 3.50 and they were like kinda cold lol.

Eventually they both got caught and got in trouble but I took advantage while they were around.”

7. Gotta work for it.

“Wasn’t really a black market but people would offer service for things. Not many people liked giving money so here’s how it would go:

“Dude, can you get me a can of dip and some booze? I will come to your farm (or ranch) to work for it.”

“Sure. Just come and feed the cattle Saturday morning and it’s yours.””

8. Nose candy.

“When I was in middle school someone started selling crushed up Smarties that kids would snort.”

9. Smart kids.

“Aside from the actual illicit things like drugs and smokes, we had basically a forerunner to Uber eats.

Seniors who were allowed to leave during lunch break and had a car would go pick up lunch some place for a fee.

This was especially good if you had a free period before lunch as you could run out, grab the food and the customer had hot lunch from wherever at the start of lunch period.”

10. The drug trade.

“There were at least 5 folks selling weed on a large scale, and a few others selling other stuff.

One guy sat next to me in history and one day in class opened his bag and showed me a very large Mason jar just stuffed full of weed, next to a scale and baggies. These folks would always talk about running pounds on a train from California.

People got caught, but were only put on a program to keep track of them. Some other folks turned to stealing band equipment and computers, and selling that off. For being one of the “nicer” public schools in town, it was full of unchecked crime.”

11. The soda game.

“I ran it.

It was $1 soda cans out of unused lockers. I moved inventory almost weekly and had multiple kids helping me out in exchange for free soda. Made upwards of $3k over 4 years.

Almost got caught once because a new student was given a locked I was using, but I managed to move inventory before a teacher found it.

This was a HUGE school, mind you. I had probably 20ish lockers.”

12. Corrupting youth.

“My locker.

Condoms, smokes, cider and chewing gum.”

13. Forger.

“I was very good at forging signatures.

Get me a sample of your parent’s signature and for $5 I’d sign whatever. This was back in the 80s, $5 would keep me in Munchos and red pop for days.”

14. Haha!

“Not mine, but I just found out that my friend’s sister makes their mom order Venti sized drinks at Starbucks with three separate ice cups, distributes the venti drink to the other cups and sells them for $5 a piece.

Literally costs her $0 because her mom buys them and gets $15 at least twice a week.”

15. Be careful with this!


In Australia these were banned without a permit, and we were 14 year olds without a permit. My best mate ended up getting bags and bags of fireworks from his step dad and I would sell them at school for him. We would split the profits 50/50 and for that year we lived like kings.

I remember kids trying to extort me, asking me to give them cheap or free fireworks or they’d tell the principal. I never gave in because I didn’t want to lose profits, so I’d tell them to go ahead and do their worst. Then I’d give my bag to my friends to hold for me. These kids were clearly bluffing because nothing ever came of it.

Though I remember a few times where I had barely any school books in my bag because I needed the room for fireworks, and during class the principal walked in and looked around the room, then pointed at another kid and asked them to go with him. Those moments made me think my time was up.

Other kids would say they could get fireworks cheaper and I told them to go for it, but they would always come back for my fireworks. Twenty years on and I’m just glad that I never got caught and that no one ever blew their hands or fingers off.”

Do you remember what kids were selling illegally in your school?

Or maybe they weren’t exactly illegal, but some students might’ve had their own racket going with some kind of product?

Tell us all about in the comments, please!