July 13, 2018

Example #2 Of Prisoner Amnesia

by Eric Wilkes (author's profile)


Example #2 of Prisoner Amnesia

(If you wish to start back at the beginning of this essay scroll back to mid June to, "Oh that's right. We're in prison.")

This example is focused on the area of remembering to be inspection ready. "Inspection ready? What all does that involve?" I'm glad you asked. It's like this, (and this applies to everybody, not just house men.) Here in prison, depending on location, a man is ordered, pressed, urged, demanded, requested, asked or required to abide by a certain ethical code. Now I realize that this far surpasses any kind of reputable living style most of these guys have ever experienced before. However, if I'm not mistaken, they are having to pay a price for having screwed up in life. Remember? So things like sweeping & mopping their floor area, maintaining the hygiene of their sink & toilet, putting all of their property in their locker, and yes even making their bunk, are among the most essential necessities that they are to complete each morning. The thought to hide away any form of contraband comes to mind too, but then again I'm not the one who's forgotten where I'm at.
The actual inspection may involve no more than an officer or two, just kinda easing around. They aren't looking for anything in particular, other than a good way to pass the time away. Then if by chance they do come across some contraband, they will just tell the guy how stupid he is, and tell him to hide it better next time while walking away without touching it. Or, in some cases, one of these types of inspectors may take the contraband, and on his way out drop it in the trash can by the door, knowing damn well that it'll be retrieved before he's 30 feet out the door.
The other extreme of an inspection (without calling it a raid.) might consist of 5 officers, a captain, a major, the assistant warden, & some big wigs from the D.O.C. in Tallahassee. It's during these inspections that ceiling corners are checked for spider webs, sinks for scum, window sills for dust, floor corners for dirt, your appearance for a class "A" uniform, your bunk for a six inch cuff, and in some cases, if anything is under the mattress. This crowd will usually walk out carrying things like an extra pillow, some bottles, cut up t-shirts, a role of packing tape, a pack of markers, and a home made Bunsen burner. So as we see, the level of importance can vary greatly. Another thing that varies quite a bit is how often it occurs. Location, & who's in charge, are the main factors here. I've had to spend lengthy amounts of time in reception centres, and those places never had any inspections to speak of. At the first permanent camp I was assigned to, inspections were something that occurred about once every other week. Then, when the warden got changed, we were having them five times a week.
So considering the fact that when an inspection will be held and to what degree it will be carried out, is constantly a question, why don't these guys just have the correct answer ready? In another words: quit forgetting that it could happen anytime and just keep their area looking in a presentable manner. Also keep their contraband hidden deep down, not just behind their locker or something. The stupidest part of it all is when an inmate returns from where ever he was, hears that there has been an inspection, and then walks into his cell to find his mattress thrown to the floor, the property he had underneath it strewed around, both his bottles of contraband bleach missing, and yet he has the audacity to start bellyaching like some little kid. They act like they've had their dignity molested or something. It's the kind of time when I want to ask them, "Hey, do you know what your address is?"
Okay, enough on this subject. Keep checking in for my next example of Prisoner Amnesia.


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