by Brian A. Wilkins
This day corresponds with Sunday, August 24. I have seen, since getting out of jail, that Sheriff Joe Arpaio tells the public he only allows inmates to watch C-Span and The Weather Channel. This is untrue. In fact, Arpaio made a big deal about “allowing” inmates to watch the Arizona Cardinals in the NFC Title Game this past Sunday. You watch whatever the D.O. allows the television to be on that day. They apparently couldn’t care less about any orders handed down by Arpaio. The poker tables are apparently prohibited by Arpaio as well, but I can’t remember one day in there without seeing poker played out in the open.
Another day, yet another milestone (in the most negative of sense) passes. Today I would have had two fantasy football drafts, both leagues of which I was the defending champion in. Gosh, even the cheesy, fun little things I used to do in life are being taken from me. I have no idea what is going on in the world of the NFL or college football anyway. I saw the other day that Brett Favre now plays for the New York Jets. That is crazy! Apparently he was either traded there or straight up signed by the Jets before training camp even started. I also found out that Manny Ramirez now plays for the L.A. Dodgers. That’s even more crazy and bad news for the Diamondbacks. I was just thinking how I would have just completed my first full month of employment at the U of Phoenix last Friday and would likely be preparing to shoot footage at ASU football practice tomorrow or already headed to Colorado for the Democratic Convention. But no, here I sit.
This O.G. guy that pissed me off a few weeks back when he got here (basically because he was talking too much shit) has become my new chess adversary. He had beaten me the first few times we played, but hadn’t won since. It was the story he was telling me that was more interesting than the game we were playing. “I went to prison in 1994 and got out in 2007,” he said, as he was telling me he was likely going back for at least two more years. “Shit I couldn’t believe it when I saw everyone walking around with a cellular phone when I got out,” he said. That was interesting to think about; how much the world can change in only 13 years. He had never heard of Google, Yahoo, or Hotmail; had no idea what I was referring to when I said “9/11”; and he referred to his favorite football team as the “Houston Oilers,” who were now the Tennessee Titans. WOW! 13 years! There is no way I’d do that. You wouldn’t be the same person when you got out. I wonder what I’d be like if I spent 13 years in prison starting in 2009…I wouldn’t get out until 2022. There is absolutely no telling what the world would look like and I would have no idea how to navigate through it; apparently just like people who have gone through that already. I mean, who am I kidding? I’m going to be a different person if/when I get out of here. In 13 years, I may as well change my name too…I’ll no longer be Brian Wilkins in the heart.
Right when I was about to try and fall asleep for the rest of the day, the Una-brotha came to the cell to show me some of his poetry. It was mostly about god, but I guess when you’re likely about to spend the next quarter-century-plus behind bars, god might be all you have. He’s got some talent and I like the kid. I told him I’d publish some of his writings on my websites if he could find a way to get them to me; if I ever get out of here. That will at least give him something to look forward too; to try and live for. He’s a good guy, but to quote him, he’s just “dumb.” Incredible waste of talent. He said he tried to get into the military but they wouldn’t let him in because of the tattoo he has on his face.
Tomorrow would have been the start of my final semester as an undergraduate student. I’d rather just not wake up, that way I don’t think about it as much. But this is exactly what the Tempe Police and the State of Arizona want. I know I’ll be more motivated than ever if I get the opportunity. I’m just not sure I’ll get that opportunity. Unless I get some kind of comforting visit or really good news soon to temper my morbid future a bit.