A new months, a new day and the sun is shining after a really hard storm…I woke up this morning determined to get out of my funk.
I've felt like a train hit me over the past few weeks. Things just seemed to keep stacking up and the loss of sleep didn't help. It was funny in a way, too, because they had moved all of the AD-
Finally, last Thursday I was moved and shocked at how quiet it was on the section I was moved to, but by then I was already in a deep depression. I was upset that I should've been in Dallas, my friend Ving was sent back to death row after a retrial, I was upset over my recent break up and then I got news that my ex-
But the sun is out again and I feel okay.
So, right now our section has been battling these giant mutant cockroaches that are coming out of the drains on the run. I'm not kidding. These suckers look like something out of a Godzilla movie. I was sitting here writing a letter when I saw something shoot across my floor. I panicked, grabbed my flip-
Not much else to report around here. I'm going to stand on my bed and look outside for a while. Birds are coming back and pecking grass looking for something to eat. Spring is finally here.
Sometimes my fellow Americans confuse the hell out of me…Earlier today there was a guard walking around with a bag Cheetos in her hand and a Dr. Pepper tucked away in a little drink slot on her stab proof vest the guards wear. Another inmate asked her how she felt about the rising gas prices and she said, "Oh, it's really bad out there. They just keep going on up and milk costs like four dollars a gallon and food is really expensive. It's just really bad out there, really hard…" I was sitting on my bed reading when heard this exchange and my face just crumpled up in a weird way. I put the book down and walked up to my cell door and said, "How bad do you think it is half way across the world? You think they're walking around with a bag of Cheetos in their hands? Heck, us prisoners eat better than half the people in this world. Put things in perspective. You're going to leave here and get into your car that probably has air conditioning. Pick up your cell phone and make a few calls, maybe pull in through a drive-
She gave me a look like, "Shut up and go back to your book." Hey, things like that irk the hell out of me. I have a hard time keeping my mouth shut when it comes to things like that. My ex-
So, today my worry has been focused on my friend Ving, who was just re-
It's almost four in the afternoon and I'm waiting to go to recreation right now. Things are moving really slow today for some reason…Oh, well.
It's raining pretty hard right now. But it's one of those peaceful storms-
I guess today I'm in a tranquil mood.
I sent over to Ving not too long ago and asked if he was okay. Sent me a note back say-
Almost dinner time, I suppose I will end this here. Me and a couple of guys are going to listen to "Stake Out" the movie at seven. I vaguely remember it, but I think I was bout ten when that movie came out. Where I'm currently housed is great because we make silly commentary as the movie is on. Kind of like on that show that used to come on "Mystery Science Theater" where the two robots and that guy would make fun of voices as they played. Hey, it's something to pass the time. Plus, my improv skills are rusty. It's what we call 'fun' around here."
A friend sent me this questionnaire and I thought, why not just use it as a journal entry. Okay, so I admit it's 'filler' because today was BORING, but it's something!
1. If I could rename myself, I would pick: I like my middle name so it would be 'Ethan.'
2. I am like my mom because I: Because we both had the same kind of sense of humor and liked the same movies. I miss her so much.
3. I am like my dad because I: Because we are Jewish and both love to tell stories. Plus, I find myself giving others the same wisdom and advice he shared with me. I miss him so much.
4. When I get really nervous, I tend to: Shut down or pace back and forth and chew my fingernails…
5. Most people can tell when I get mad/angry because I: shut down and bottle it in.
6. My most irrational fear would be: Being afraid of insects and reptiles.
7. My completely rational fear is: Dying alone.
8. Within ten minutes of meeting me, it is impossible not to notice that: I'm a very self deprecating, funny and shy person. Well, shy, but charismatic, if that makes sense.
9. Nothing makes me happier than: Being in love, having friends who care.
10. Nothing makes me angrier than: People who do not care about other people or life.
11. The physical feature I get the most compliments on is/are: My eyes and lips.
12. If I could change one physical thing it would be: My freakin' love handles, fat around my waist, and have a hair transplant. Being bald sucks.
13. I cannot stand the smell of: Broccoli or cauliflower, body odor.
14. I live for the smell of: Too many things to smell, but oddly fabric softener used to bring me to near orgasmic experience!
15. I could never marry someone who: Isn't loving, funny, or doesn't love life.
16. If I had any political clout in this country, I would: End the death penalty, reform prisons.
17. If high school taught me anything, it would be: That kids can be some mean sons of bitches.
18. I get extremely embarrassed when: I'm complimented.
19. The trait that most of my friends have in common is: We love humanity, loyalty.
20. In a relationship, romantic or friend wise, my biggest flaw is: I'm too dependent.
21. In a relationship, romantic or friend wise, my best quality is: I'm dedicated, loyal, giving and loving.
22. I really wish that I knew how to: Compose the music I constantly hear in my head to paper.
23. My favorite word(s) is: Retard (simple, I know, but I use it a lot!). Maybe 'freakin' too.
24. My least favorite word is: Bitch.
25. I am ashamed to admit that I really enjoy: reading chick magazines/Big Brother.
26. I wish that I could MAKE myself enjoy: Chess.
27. If I am losing an argument, I have a tendency to: Stop talking about it.
28. Myspace is: Kind of retarded, but addictive.
29. I'm pretty sure my credit rating is: Huh? Credit rating on death row? HAHAHAHAHA-
Man! What a beautiful day it is outside. The sun is pouring through my window and it's just lovely. Too bad I'm stuck in the damn cell for the next two days. I miss the days when we could go to recreation every day for one hour a day. Now, we have to stay in our cells for two days out of the week because we get two hour recs. Some guys like this, but I thought the old program was much better. Oh, well.
Not much happening. Just listening to movies and reading. A friend down the run is sup-
I ran across this quote from Nietzsche today reading a book called Man's Search for Meaning. "He who has a Why to live for can bear almost any how." I think I do have something to live for, my life is definitely not over, so surely I can overcome any hard-
Today was a really nice day. I thought it was going to start with a bump in the road
When we went outside it was a little overcast, but about 30 minutes in the sun came out in all of its glory. I played a few games of basketball barefoot, because I currently have no tennis shoes and then after my feet started to hurt we just did push-
When I came back in I had a peanut butter and jelly sandwich, bathed with my hose and cleaned my cell. The rest of the time I've just been reading away. I'm reading two books. Next up as I listen to KDOL is to do some crosswords until mail comes.
I'll close with this: "Forces beyond your control can take away everything you possess except one thing, your freedom to choose how you will respond to the situation. You cannot control what happens to you in life, but you can control what you will feel and do about what happens to you" -
Today has been an interesting day. Nothing like a little drama to keep you on your toes. It all started after a guy heard another guy talking behind his back. He confronted the dude and told him that, "If that's how you feel about me and can't be man enough to say anything to my face, then just don't mess with me…" Well, the other guy felt disres-
went to the dayroom. Because I talk to both parties another guy basically asked who's side I was on. I said that I wasn't on anyone's side and that I didn't want to be on any side and to leave me out of it. "I talk to who I want to talk to and expect to be treated the same way I treat people. If you can't do that then act like I don't exist."
It's frustrating that some of us on death row cannot just stick together and make a change for the better and fight for the same cause. It's frustrating when some would ra-
Other than that the day has been really pretty and warm. It's a bit humid but an other-
Woke up and went to recreation at six this morning. I did some working out and then wrote a letter in the day room. It's usually the most quiet and peaceful time of the day.
The drama continues and it's escalated a bit. I hope one of these idiots doesn't end up trying to hurt the other. It's sad that our lives are reduced to this pettiness. Read a book; write a letter to mom or something. If you don't want to save your life, at least make it meaningful in some way. I hope I get moved tonight. See, that's one of the advantages!
It's a bit overcast right now. I think we're going to get some storms. Weird how our weather here in Livingston always coincides with the moods of everyone. I swear I live in the twilight zone.
Today I went to the lake. Well, if you want to call a flooded outside recreation yard a lake. It was fun! Nobody wanted to go outside because it was raining but since it was warm I decided to go out and experience the peacefulness. I grabbed a towel and slid on my flip flops, grabbed my water bottle and headed out. A guy in the dayroom said, "Randy, where are you going?" as the guards led me away, and I said, "To the lake!"
Really it was only sprinkling a little bit. A nice spring sprinkle and I was lost in my head when suddenly one of those giant mutant cockroaches crawled out from one of the storm drains. Next thing I knew we were in a battle to the death with each other. He tried to kick me with one of his giant lizard-
All in all, I enjoyed my time in the rain.
Last night to ease the tensions of the drama during the last few days, me, a guy named 'Country', and another guy named 'Hood' listened to TV shows and goofed around. There was a National Geographic program on about killer whales and Country couldn't believe that orcas can run on a beach, grab a sea lion and toss it back to the sea and flip it around. For the longest time I'd been trying to do a perfect Cartman from the cartoon "South Park" and I said, "Yeah, imagine Country swimming out in the seat (Kicking in my Cartman voice), 'Ohh, what a lovely swim! Ohhh, look at all the sea lions, they sure are big.' (Back to normal voice) "So, Country is swimming around when all of a sudden one of those orcas pops up" (back to Cartman's voice), 'Look, it's Shamu. C'mere, you cute
thing, you. I want to pet you and keep you as my pet! Want a Twinkie?' (Back to normal voice) "Then the orca tries to bit him" (back to Cartman's voice) 'Hey! You're not sup-
I told Hood that at one time I could do many different cartoon voices and accents. I started working through them. My list of them is as follows: Yoda, Kermit the Frog, Grover, Pinky from Pinky the Brain, Marvin, Bobby from Bobby's World, Gizmo and Stripe from Gremlins, several different southern dialects, a bad British accent, Indian (from In-
Crap. They just told me I'm moving to F-
9:30 P.M. Man, that sucks! Not only did they put me on a bad section, but they put me in what's called a "management" cell. It's got a big box over what should be the food slot. The box has two slots. One to slide the food in and close it and then the other slot opens and you pull your food out and it closes. This keeps you from ever having direct contact with anyone. It's mainly used for those who attack guards and/or throw feces and urine on them. Over the mesh windows is a plate of Plexiglas and the door is sealed up com-
It hasn't been that bad over here. I'm looking for wire in the hopes that I can string up my cell and pull in some decent music. Right now all I'm getting is "Country Legends," an 80s cheese station, KDOL and some Tejano. Better than nothing, but still…
I received another one of those fun little questionnaires and so I thought I'd do I it in today's journal. Something to do and laugh at, I guess. Here it is. Enjoy:
Who is your ultimate celebrity crush? Natalie Portman, Anne Hathaway.
What color best represents you? Really earth tones in general, but you can't go wrong with black.
Who would you cast to play you in a movie? Uhh, probably Billy Zane 'cause we're both bald.
What celebrity best represents your vision of fashion? George Clooney seems to dress well, but then again while I like to dress cool, I like down to earth fashion and even al-
If you could start in any TV show, which one would it be? Heroes!
If you were on MTV's "Made" what would you ask to be? What the hell, 'Made'? I thought that was a Mafia term
Who do you think is the hottest athlete? Maria Sharipova, the USA Women's Volleyball team-
What sport best represents your personality? Soccer, 'cause I'm all over the field.
Have you ever been inside a Victoria's Secret? Does it make me a pervert to say yes? I was with a girlfriend, I swear!
Have you ever applied makeup to your face? I plead the fifth.
Do you read/watch porn? Not in a while, but, yup, though it's been officially banned in prison.
Do you think Chelsea Clinton has class? How would I know? Not too pretty, that's for sure!
Who are you voting for? If I could vote it'd be Obama.
Have you ever cried while watching a movie? Too many to count. I like sappy movies.
Do you wear makeup because you think you're ugly? Uh, not even makeup could help this mug!
Name you closest five friend from 12 years ago. Can I say 13 years ago? It'd be Jason, Chad, Theresa, Jim and Wayne.
Do you think childhood trauma justified current life? Justifies? That makes no sense-
You see a falling star-
How fun was that? Well, guess I'll get to some reading. I'm reading a book called Wild Fire by Nelson DeMille and then I'm going to start reading a book I just received this morning called What's So Great About Christianity, a counter argument to what atheists think about religion. Should be interesting.
It's a lovely Saturday afternoon. Plenty of sunshine. I was able to get ten hours of sleep last night! Woohoo! Plus…I finally got some extra wire and now my cells looks like a NSA experiment on SETI project, but I can get some more stations!
Nothing of substance to report.
I was sleeping really well until I was knocked out of dreamland by the sounds of some-
problems escalated because rank didn't give a damn and so he jacked the day room and was gassed and placed on level 3. Well, all this past week he had been trying to get this problem addressed and no one really cared, so he jacked the walkway run this morning. The little riot squad came down and forced him back into his cell and then the lieutenant said, "This the last time we deal with you. If we have to do it again I'm going to hurt you." Of course he said this after the cameras were gone.
Not 50 minutes after that the riot team was dragging another guy into a ce
Every time I'm on F-
It's really a nice cool spring day. I stood on my bed and watched out the window as cars passed by. It's a peaceful thing to do. I wish I was in a cell where I could watch the horses. I can't really see them on this side.
Right now I've got a splitting headache from lack of caffeine. I have an on-
Well, other than a crappy ass letter I got from my ex-
I guess I'm in a little bit of a foul mood. I swear, I don't understand women at all. I men-
I guess I'm going to start reading book two of a trilogy called His Dark Materials. The first book was The Golden Compass (also a movie) and it really surprised me at how good it was. Book two is called The Subtle Knife, hopefully it is as good. As I said before, this puts Harry Potter to shame. Off to bookland I go…
I woke up this morning and my bald head was sore. My dome was thoroughly cooked yesterday. Ouch.
Today has been kind of boring. Just reading and waiting on some more wire from some-
All right, wire has arrived. Let's see what I can do…
Yes! It worked! I feel like a mad scientist. I have what is basically a spider web of wire running everywhere and then all into my signal booster I can get a staticky CBS and ABC. I am not complaining! But…In the process I was able to pick up the nearby airport's communications. I'm not kidding! I just heard, "Continental flight 356, flying flight path…" Actually, it's kind of cool.
Ooh mail is early! Gotta go ready my mail and get ready for Big Brother. I hope Natalie is on the chopping block. Please if there's any real justice in the universe she'll be on the block!
Good riddance Natalie! Yes! She's just been kicked off of Big Brother. Man, Sheila is good. She totally made that happen. Here's what happened: Yesterday Adam (who was on the block with Shannon) won power of veto meaning he could take himself off of the chopping block. Sheila had been gunning for Natalie all along but was being two-
So the vote comes up and only Adam and Ryan can vote-
Now, the game is about to really get interesting. I'm going to call Adam and Sheila as final two. Adam wins it all. I think Shannon will be kicked out next week because she's now a serious contender for the $500,000. Sheila is conniving enough to make it work for her. The only way Ryan would be able to pull it off is to blindside Adam and stab him in his back, which I don't think he'd be willing to do because it would leave Sheila or Shan-
Today is a somber day. First, I wake up to the news that the U.S. is ranked number five amongst countries who execute. FIVE. That's just nuts. We're up there with China and the Middle East. USA! USA! USA!
Then at rec someone yells that the Supreme Court has ruled against lethal injection be-
When I went back to my cell I went to AM radio to piece together the news and what exactly the Supreme Court ruled and I pieced it all together. It's a mixed bag: Yes, ex-
I figure Texas will have its first execution by May of June.
A beautifully boring and peaceful day. It's been quiet all day long. I've just been listening to the radio and doing laundry. Nothing laborious. I'm loving this weather that we've had all week long. No humidity, no rain. Not even a cloud in the sky. Currently I'm listening to air traffic control on my radio. I still think it's wild that I can actually pick this up.
Man…talk about news to really wake your ass up. I'm left feeling very nervous/anxious about an upcoming email that was sent to me and I should have by the weekend. In all honesty I dread it but this could be a pivotal moment, a life changing moment. I know I'm being vague, but I will explain more when I receive this email. I need this no matter how emotional it might be. My response is everything.
A hot, humid day. I've been thinking compulsively about the coming email. I really don't know what to do until then.
I don't believe it's ever in the cards to get more than four to six hours of sleep. Yeah, occasionally there's the rare day I might make it to sever or eight hours of sleep, but those really are rare.
So, I'm out here in the dayroom at about 6:25 AM. I went to sleep at around 1:15 AM, thinking I'd be able to sleep in, but really I should know better than that. It's my fault. Really, I just have a very hard time sleeping before midnight and sleeping during the day. It's something I've been doing since I was about 14 years old, but I realize that be-
How did I get there from sleep? I guess my point is that I'm starting to feel my age!
One thing I didn't mention in my journal yesterday that was amusing (my mind has been on the looming email making its way) is that maintenance came to rip out this whole console in the pods control center. See, it's a very big counter with shelves, etc, and then you have the controls built into it. Mostly the console was good for some of the guards to hide behind and sleep or engage in other dubious activities. Mainenance stripped it all out and just left the controls so now there's no place to sleep behind or hide.
As I said, all very amusing.
Well, I think I've rambled on long enough. My mind is like a freight train this morning, but my body is not catching up!
I'm kind of an emotional mess right now… Well, I'm trying to keep myself from falling back into a depression… I did receive the email I was fretting on Wednesday night and it was from the widow of the officer killed in 2000 after our escape. It made me feel just awful inside and while I'll never truly understand the amount of pain her family has gone through the years I could only ask for forgiveness no matter if I didn't even pull a gun. I don't know what else to say other than I have always had remorse for that night, as it should've never happened and I don't say that because I've ended up on death row. Yes, being on death row has changed me, has opened my eyes to many things and had it not been for me coming here I probably would've never seen them or wouldn't have seen them for a long ways to come, but still I've always been sincere in asking for forgiveness. And while I've never expected, I'll always ask for it.
I don't think some people realize why I have a journal and write it as often as I can or why I write memoirs and other things. It's not for attention. I don't know anyone who bares their soul for the whole world to see is really screaming 'look at me?' No, I've nev-
Some people may not 'buy it', but I'm not trying to sell
Well, today I feel a little better. Last night I listened to "Harry Potter and the Goblet of Fire" and it was pretty good. I'd have liked to see the special effects. A friend recently asked how we were able to listen to TV through our radios and why we had a coax an-
tenna system. Well, I can't get into all of the technical things as to why we can listen, but I think that the whole unit was originally set up for cable and because we're out in the sticks they use some sort of system to pick up clear FM signals, because otherwise you wouldn't be able to listen to much radio out here. We pick up a Houston signal. Well, be-
In just a little bit my radio program starts up and there's rumors going around that some big changes are coming to the radio station that does our show. I hope it doesn't affect the show itself. I think other than a few things it runs pretty well and serves an awesome purpose. Yeah, it has plenty of kinks, but it's great to hear messages. I always get a little sad when I hear parents call in and the love they have for their children-
Not much else is happening around here. It's a nice day outside. I don't have much of a view, but the sky looks nice enough.