by Brian A. Wilkins
This day corresponds with Saturday, August 23, 2008.
After these doors opening woke me again, as they always do, I couldn’t get back to sleep. Chino came by and told me he signed a plea yesterday; he’ll serve about a year-and-a-half in prison. He didn’t seem all that bummed about it; he knew it was coming. Plus he knows its his own dumb ass fault he escaped his work-release program, which is why he’s here.
I had to get out of that cell for a while, as the toilet smelled really bad and Juan’s snoring, even in the daytime, sounded like a lawn mower, and was really annoying me. I went to the outside area for the first time in a while and talked to a couple of the pisa dudes. “I bet we could get over this wall,” one of them said, plotting a possible escape. I guess if you’re here long enough, you will start thinking of any and all possibilities of getting out. Myself and the three others (who will have to remain anonymous) started observing the fence and what it would take to cut through it. Still there was no way there would ever be enough time to coordinate someone on the outside being on the other side of the fence with ropes and tools for cutting. One guy said the best thing to do is get a job in the kitchen, as the last person to escape from here simply ran out the kitchen door (he was caught a short time later). One of the guys then mentioned the buses on our way to court. “We’d all have to somehow arrange court dates on the same day; and we’d have to kill a cop,” he said.
We then started looking at the pipes running from the ceilings. It looked as if they led outside, but we’d have to find a way to get into them. It appeared the only way was near the showers; right in view of the D.O.’s in the tower. Funny I was sitting there plotting this stuff with guys going to prison for a very long time. If I tried to escape here and was unsuccessful, I would then be a TRUE felon with ZERO chance of fixing my life again. But I’m starting to wonder whether that would be worth the chance. One of the guys, likely going to prison for 15 years (armed robbery) said he is going to freak out on the stand so they deem him insane and unfit for trial. He said he would then just have to spend a couple years in a state hospital before being free. Never thought I’d be a character in an “Escape from Alcatraz” or “Shawshank Redemption” plot. But again, when you’re desperate, you’ll do anything.
All these guys keep stopping in here trying to tell me something about their lives to write about if/when I get out of here. Some of their lives are interesting, but many of them are petty criminals who are uneducated and frankly, stupid. I’ll talk about a few of them specifically only if it helps in telling the story of what goes on not only in this place, but society at large which leads to people ending up here. I don’t think there is any question the medical here is gulag-esque, the guards are corrupt, and the court system is a joke. And many of these guys have real life situations entangled in the web. I hope I do get a chance to at least write about it; then maybe a second chance at law school so I can help the very guys I’m writing about. But its not going to happen anyway.