Prison Pete

Monday, May 28, 2007
  Time may fly
when you are having fun, but I am not sure what the delay is in responding to your latest letter. It is most definitely not fun here, and I am not having any either. Any what you ask? Fun.

I suppose part of the delay is in the knowing that you do not write quite as often. That is certainly not a complaint, I am thankful for your continued friendship.

I am working on not thinking everything must move at the speed of light. In my last letter I mentioned wanting more mail. One reason receiving letters from the outside is valued is that in a place where an individual’s worth is not given much, if any, support, letters prove in a very concrete way that we inmates have some worth.

Living in a closed environment, it is also very difficult to rise above the day-to-day sameness. In this I am speaking of the limited subjects one has to talk about. Further, since honesty is not something that exists in this environment, having any type of meaningful relationship with other inmates is next to impossible.

For example, the inmate next to me gets some fresh food when his wife comes to visit him each month. Last month he shared several meals with me. I provided most of the ingredients to make up a meal (pasta, onions, peppers, mushrooms, diced tomatoes) and he would add either a Tyson baked chicken or a couple of packs of imitation crab legs.

Now he is friendlier with another inmate, and all of a sudden I am no longer in the loop for community meals. I am not complaining about being left out; I have so little time to cook as it is. But had I invested too much of my self in the friendship, I would now feel bad about being dumped.

One way to protect yourself is to not share too much of your personal feelings with any other inmate (or staff). But think about this for one. How many times during an average day do you interact with another human being that on some level cares about you as a person?

It was with this in mind that I put out the request for person to correspond with. As with some of the other questions I have posted to the blog, I am seeking assistance with things I can not provide for myself. As the song says, "We all need somebody to lean on."

As far as the reason the blog does not list my real name, the main reason for this is to provide a thin screen of anonymity. While I have not posted too many stories of my day-to-day experiences, if you read some of the older posts from my time at Club Fed, know that those posts did become directly connected to me and there was certainly some retaliation brought down on my head.

While my editor has provided my name and address on request so I am not entirely anonymous, the search engines do not directly link this blog to any real person. Does that make some sense?

By the way, while I would certainly never continue to write to someone if they asked me to stop writing, any person that receives mail from a prisoner only has to write a letter to the officials at the prison and any attempt by the prisoner to send out a letter would result in disciplinary action. Something I should point out I have managed to avoid throughout my ten plus years of confinement in various government-funded gated communities.
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