Thursday, August 30, 2007
In prison the meals often leave much to be desired. Much of the time food is cold, over/under cooked, spoiled or just plain disgusting. Many of us make our own meals and snacks from food bought from the prison's commissary and off of chow-hall trays. Here is one of my own personal favorites recipes.
10 eight ounce cartons of 2% milk (chow-hall)
1 ten ounce bag of instant hot cocoa mix (commissary)
100 single serving sugar packets (chow-hall)
40 single serving coffee creamer packets (commissary)
4 six ounce cups of salt (chow-hall)
1 eight pound bag of ice (commissary)
1 heavy-duty plastic trash bag (prison trash-crew)
2 small plastic trashcan liners (prison trash-crew)
Combine milk, cocoa, sugar and creamers in doubled, small trashcan liners, making certain ingredients are well mixed and dissolved.
Tie doubled bags tightly, leaving as little air as possible inside.
Next, pour ice into heavy-duty trash bag and pour salt onto ice evenly.
Set smaller ingredients bag into salted ice and tie the top and bottom of the heavy bag, leaving a little air inside.
Grab a knot of the heavy bag in each hand and mix up in an up & down motion for about 30-45 minutes, or until ice has all melted.
Tear heavy bag open, draining cold salt-water and removing frozen ingredient bag.
Empty ingredients into bowls, cups or whatever else is handy.
Ice cream is served. Serves 3 or 4 bowls.
Additional flavors can be made with powdered drink mixes, cookies, candy, candybars, etc.
It ain't Dairy Queen, but it sure beats gruel.
Wednesday, August 29, 2007
The term "convict" amongst the prisoner population, is a person incarcerated who follows a "code of conduct", most often follows "racial politics" and often times has the "Us -vs- Them" mentality. Convicts tend to adhere to racial unity; do not talk much - if at all - to the guards; mind their own business - also known as "doing their own time"; and if anything jumps off on the yard, convicts are there to support their fellow convicts. Convicts also look out for each other, by providing new convicts on the yard with soap, coffee, smokes, etc. - known as a "care package", until they can shop at the commissary. Convicts will use the term "inmate" with a derogatory connotation. Guards will use the terms "convict", "prisoner" and "inmate" universally for their literal definitions.
Over the years the term "convict" has become less used by the prison population. The natural ebb and flow of language has changed the terms' usage. The newer, younger generation being incarcerated can be attributed to this change as well.
In recent years, ADOC Director Dora Schriro implemented instructions that we were to be addressed as "offender." Guards never followed this instruction, nor did we appreciate the term. It was too close to "sex offender." A term certain to bring you much conflict in prison.
Thursday, August 23, 2007
Finishing my smoke, I stood and began to head back into my cell - the humid Arizona desert summer is terrible - where my small plastic fan awaited. Like a large, black raindrop, a 2 inch black beetle descended past my head, crashing into the cement with a hollow thud. Saved by its thick armored shell, the beetle instantly scurried away at high speed on raised legs, thick antennae wildly adjusting, disappearing into a deep crack where the ground met the wall. Looking up, I could see eight to ten more of these kamakazi beetles climbing precariously about 20 feet above me.
Every year around July these dare-devil insects appear en masse here. They are very tough, stubborn and brave as well as tricky. You'll find them on their backs in the hottest part of the day, legs stiffly jutting skyward, motionless. However, nudge them with your toe and they will spring to life, right themselves, and scurry away at mach-speed. Bizarre little creatures.
They do, however, become a nuisance. You'll find them hiding in your shoes in the morning, after sneaking stealthily in your cell at night. They are all over the place. I've even discovered 2 sharing the same shower as me. I love nature but it's a bit too bizarre when the wildlife wants to shower with you. Now if I could just train them to wash my feet...
Wednesday, August 22, 2007
So, for those of you with access to a camera, snap a shot.
P.S. Although this is intended for one particular person I welcome all photos from everywhere. As for that person: I'm pouting now ... Don't make me beg, because then comes the cover tweeker paparazzi and we know they will get your picture. Ha. Ha. And would a letter kill ya?
Why is this former inmate; whose debt to society is paid, no longer an ADOC employee? Shal I speculate? Of course ...
Ms. XDOC would perform her duties and not be willing to join their "good ol' boy" system; She'd avoid at all cost, and even reveal, employee improprieties and illegal actions; she'd uncover and reveal the dirt at the women's unit; or - God forbid - she'd see that inmates got what they are entitled to get.
Whatever reason, Ms. XDOC paid her debt, was seeking a gainfully employed life and was hamstrung. It's a travesty that a former inmate cannot move on with her life without interference by the *Penile [sic] system.
* Penile System: A system existing only to screw you and piss on you that thrives on blood.
Doctors and administrators required that I take a variety of tests (some of which I took multiple times), as well as complete a 6 month substance abuse course. -Which took a year to get enrolled into, despite being one of two in the class. This was mandatory before beginning chemo. I grieved the issue and filed an action in the U.S. District Court of AZ. (Clark vs. Schriro, et al., CIV 06 0085-TUC-FRZ).
A year of cajoling and legal lip-service, ADOC began my chemo, however, they continue their typical half-ass fashion; dropping the ball on meds repeatedly, no follow-ups, lack of adequate blood tests and failure of any medical care providers to see me during chemo.
Side-effects of chemo (Ribavirin & Peginterferon alfa-2a) are trying. I expected as much. It isn't as bad, for me, as doctors warned.
My court action remains pending, which asks for Compensatory, Nominal, Punitive and Future Damages, as well ass Injunctive and Declaratory Relief. It names doctors and administrators, (Dr. Baird included), as defendants. I'm not the only ADOC prisoner suing either. What I lack in legal expertise, I compensate for in contempt for bureaucratic paper-pushers and pseudo-MDS.
Hep-C is a nation-wide epidemic inside prisons. Prisoners, guards and medical staff get it just alike, in turn passing it on to others. Failure to educate, prevent and treat is spreading the virus. Check out the facts: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr; http://www.digestive.niddk.nih.gove/ddiseases/pubs/chronichepc/index.htm; http://www.liverfoundation.org/db/articles/1005
P.S. I also just learned that for the past 9 weeks I've had low red blood cells, white blood cless and platelets. Kudos for the pseudo-MD's for failing to tell me.