Prison Pete

Saturday, December 03, 2005
  The Mail, One Last Time.
There is no more expectant time in prison than mail call. (For some, their release date is also important, but for others it may be too far off to worry about.)

Mail call is the one point in the day that we incarcerated types can receive some sort of positive validation of our self worth. It can also be the time of heartbreak and sorrow. Yeah those may be the extremes; every day does not have to be either one or the other. But some days...

Mail is distributed at 4:00 PM, Monday through Friday. With the exception of holidays. November has two: Veterans Day and Thanksgiving.

While mail is normally still delivered in the free world on Saturdays, we do not get mail on Saturday.

Mail is delivered to the post office from here sometime after 8:00 AM, Monday through Friday, excluding holidays. The last chance to send out a letter each week is Thursday evening. It is delivered to the post office, one hopes, Friday morning.

We still might get a letter in Friday's mail call, but the mail does not go out from here until Monday morning, and if Monday is a holiday, then it is Tuesday before the letter goes out.

Now imagine for a moment that the only way you could communicate with a friend or loved one was by the U.S. Mail. You had no cell phone, land line phone, no email, no direct personal contacts, no meeting at the local store. NO CONTACTS.

The only form of communication between you and another human would arrive in your mail box, once each day, and if you needed to get a message to someone, you needed to write it out, put it in an envelope and send it out. Imagine there was something that occurred on a Friday, it would not even leave your location till Monday morning and still need time to reach its intended destination.

One last combination. You do not get anything on a Thursday, and say no problem, maybe Friday. Well Friday comes and no letters for you. Now it is Monday before you can get a letter. Assuming you did get a letter on Wednesday, it will be Monday, five days, 120 hours, between the letters.

Think about that for a minute. Think about going 120 hours without any form of communication with another human being that actually cared for you. Think about needing to pass on some important news, and having to wait 120 hours before you were able to get confirmation back that the message was received!

Yes this is being a little obsessive. Guess I am specifically talking about feeling blue. Why would one care if it took a while to come down from feeling up?

The thing is you hope for mail Thursday and Friday, none arrives, and by this time you know it will be Monday, before you even have the possibility to get a letter. Overall that is a five day trek into the depths of bluedom, and that is why sometimes you see me 'looking' for the mail to help lift me up.

Now having spent way too much time on this subject let me state for the record, I know how hard it is to find the time to write.

So if you are one of those incredibly wonderful people that do write to me, or might be thinking of writing to me, do not worry about not being able to send lots of letters. Every letter I get is a great letter and the more I get the better.

I do not hold anyone individual responsible for keeping my spirit up, that is my job. You are welcome to raise my spirit when you can. I hope this is clear now.
I know you're blue and I really want to write you a letter, but I barely have time to get anything else done it seems. I promise a letter over Christmas break, so I hope you'll be patient with me.
Post a Comment

View my profile
Contact Prison Pete
Contact the Editor
Blogroll Me!

December 2010
November 2010
October 2010
September 2010
August 2010
July 2010
June 2010
May 2010
April 2010
March 2010
February 2010
January 2010

December 2009
November 2009
October 2009
September 2009
August 2009
July 2009
June 2009
May 2009
April 2009
March 2009
February 2009
January 2009

December 2008
November 2008
October 2008
September 2008
August 2008
July 2008
June 2008
May 2008
April 2008
March 2008
February 2008
January 2008

December 2007
November 2007
October 2007
September 2007
August 2007
July 2007
June 2007
May 2007
April 2007
March 2007
February 2007
January 2007

December 2006
November 2006
October 2006
September 2006
August 2006
July 2006
June 2006
May 2006
April 2006
March 2006
February 2006
January 2006

December 2005
November 2005
October 2005
September 2005
August 2005
July 2005
June 2005
May 2005
April 2005
March 2005
February 2005
January 2005

December 2004
November 2004
October 2004
September 2004
August 2004
July 2004
June 2004
May 2004
April 2004


Powered by Blogger


Emily Dickinson
Janet Evanovich
Ian Fleming
Jonathan Franzen
Robert Fulghum
Sue Grafton
Tami Hoag
Jean Shepherd

Johann Sebastian Bach
Virgil Fox
Benny Goodman
Vladimir Horowitz
Itzhak Perlman
David Russell
Lonnie Smith

Radio and TV Shows
All Things Considered
Capitol Steps
Fawlty Towers
Fresh Air
The Infinite Mind
Jazz After Hours
Jeeves and Wooster
Pipe Dreams

Media, Publishers, Networks
Augsberg Fortress Press
Hamilton Bookseller
NY Daily News
NY Newsday
NY Times
PC Magazine
WNED Buffalo, NY

Helpful Organizations

Federal Bureau of Prisons
NY State Court of Appeals
NY State Department of Corrections

Typing with a Dvorak keyboard
Fastback Book Binding System
Who links to me?