Prison Pete

Monday, May 19, 2008
  Random Thoughts With a Broken Leg.
I am having a hard time dealing with my broken leg. Okay, the surgeon says hip.

What is true is that I broke the right femur right under the ball that fits into the hip socket. I have three or four pins that are attempting to allow the bone to fuse itself back together. I am due to see the doctor in three more weeks and may know at that time if there is any possibility that this operation will succeed.

At that point it may not yet be clear as to success or failure and in any case the doctor said it could take up to three months to reach full healing. I am keeping all weight off the leg as he instructed me last Monday. Unfortunately I was told by some of the prison nursing staff several days earlier that I was supposed to put weight on it!

Hobbling around on one leg with a pair of crutches in prison is a real challenge to say the least. There are many tasks that I can not accomplish without asking for another inmate's assistance.

I was talking to one to the counselors that appears to have a strong background in sports related injuries and his advice to me was to be sure I ate healthily. One wonders how healthy the food the state provides is.

For the fourteen days following my surgery, all I ate was the regular prison diet. I was in a medical ward which was a room with four beds, a shower and toilet. The only activity was to lie in bed, or sit in a chair and watch TV or sleep. I did not have my glasses so reading was not an option.

When I returned to my usual secure location last Friday, I weighed in at 214 pounds. That means I had lost at least 6 pounds eating all the food I could and expending minimal physical energy. Now that I am up and hobbling around the compound, one wonders how "healthy" I would be eating if not for my ability to purchase cans of tuna fish, peanut butter, American cheese and pasta from the commissary. I need protein!

When I received my property last Monday, I was saddened to find out that my fellow inmates in my former dorm (yes I did end up losing my cherished corner cube) had appropriated all of my food supplies save one bottle of cinnamon, and all my plastic bowls, cooking spoons, etc. There is absolutely no honor among inmates. Despite all the random acts of kindness I would perform in the dorm, when the opportunity arises for free stuff, it becomes a question of what can I get.

It is yet another one of the conundrums of prison life. Supposedly one of the criteria the parole board can use to decide if I should be released is how I got along with other inmates. But I ask you, how do you deal with people that you know at the first opportunity will take advantage of you?

While I am willing to continue to assist my fellow inmates, I refuse to invest any emotional energy in a relationship that is solely based on what can you do for me right now and no, it does no stop me from robbing you blind (or standing by while others do the thieving) as soon as the opportunity arises.
Hey Pete,

SO sorry to hear about your leg, but VERY happy to see you writing again...you were missed. Take care of yourself and your leg and try and keep your head up....
Wow, sounds like 'scratch your back - I stab yours' kinda people.
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