It's December and officially Holiday Season, a time of year I particularly love and yet today I'm depressed for no apparent reason. Maybe it's because I keep anticipating going back to Dallas, maybe it's because I feel more alone than usual. Maybe it's because I wake up in this cell and think, damn, I'm still in this place? You have these super-
I can't begin to explain how bad that feeling is.
I tried to keep my mind occupied today as I have the past few days by helping guys out on the section I live on, to get their radios working properly. It keeps me busy and fo-
I really don't mind being back here any more as I love to pick up art work and such for cheap prices, but I have to save my pennies to get a new typewriter. So frustrating, but necessary because I have an important writing project. I've been asked to write an essay for an anti-
I really have to set some goals for 2008. I mean, I already have long term goals mapped out if I win my appeal, but I'm thinking short term, more immediate goals.
It's 12:44 P.M. as I sit here listening to the Christmas edition of "A Prairie Home Compa-
I pretty much avoided writing a journal entry all month long. I just haven't been up to writing anything, as the past two months have been emotionally draining for me and to be honest I didn't feel like pouring my pains and troubles out to the world (some are probably saying right now-
Last night I had a memory pop up that I hadn't had in a long time. It was something I was surprised I had forgotten and brought about by listening to the movie (Dork alert) "Elf." I thought the movie was going to be cheesy, but I found it kind of touching in the
sense that Will Ferrels character Buddy the Elf was trying to reconnect with his father. I ended up missing my own dad very much and thought about things we had done on holi-
I was living in a small studio apartment in Lexington, Kentucky, and knew my dad would by flying into Lexington to visit my brother for Family Dad at our school OBI (Oneida Baptist Institute). I decided to surprise him at the airport and waited on his plane to fly in. Earlier that year he had a heart attack and I knew he had lost a lot of weight, but I was surprised to see how much he had lost as he walked into the terminal. I yelled, "Dad!" and walked up to him to give him a hug. He looked surprised, but accepted my embrace. "How did you know I was coming?" he asked. "Wes told me you were coming up for Family Day so I thought I'd surprise you," I said. "You look good," Dad said. "Man, so do you. You weren't joking about the weight loss. I can't believe it."
I walked with him and helped him pick up his luggage and he said he wanted to get something to eat, so I told him there was a nearby McDonalds and I would buy. We went to the fast food place, but he insisted on buying. As we ate we made small talk and he asked how my girl friend and I were doing. I told him that after the fall break at OBI I would be returning to school. He told me he didn't think that would be a good idea, but I hold him I didn't want to get a GED. I wanted to graduate. He changed the subject and asked if he could see my apartment. I knew it was a mess and honestly hadn't thought about letting him see it, but I said, "Sure," and we left to check it out.
I could tell by the look on his face that he knew I wasn't joking as we entered my small studio. I had junk everywhere, clothing, pizza boxes, dishes in the sink. "Uh, I was plan-
A day passed and on Sunday he showed up. This time I had the apartment super clean. My dad and brother showed up and I gave both of them hugs. Dad asked if he could use my phone to call mom. I handed it to him and we all talked to her. Then dad said he had time to kill until his flight and asked what there was to do. I told him we could check out the Horse Race Museum and that's where we went. I remember taking some pictures with him and my brother and then we went to the airport. I gave them both a hug and told them to have a safe flight and watched them board the plane. Had I thought it would be the very last time I would see him I think I would have held the hug a little longer.
In 1996, as I sat in country jail, I remembered an AT&T commercial. It was Christmas and a kid who ran away from home goes to a pay phone. He tells the operator his story and asks if she will connect him to his home. A second passes and you see a shot of his mother answering the phone and he says, "Mom? I'm sorry. I want to come home…" Watching that commercial, I had to get up and go to my cell and cry my butt off. I wanted nothing more than to be at home. I still want nothing more than to be home, but even if that's not possible, I wish I had my family back.
This past Tuesday I had a little bit of good news. My attorney stopped by to tell me that I would for sure be returning to Dallas in mid-
The other benefit is just getting away from death row for a bit. I need to get away from this place. I need something that will give me a fresh perspective. Most of all, I think I will be able to clear my head. While it will undoubtedly be much noisier in Dallas County
Jail, I can use the time away from the radio and interruptions of life here to think about things, my life and my future. Good can only come out of this trip.
Here's to hoping for the best
I suppose I will close this up for the day and wish everyone peace and love. Times can be tough and depressing, but someone always has it worse.
Another holiday is almost over, and it had a good ending for me. I watched as the sun set out of my window and thought this had to be one stressful month! I'll spare you the whining…
The day began with the passing out of the dessert trays. These usually come first and are usually a Styrofoam plate loaded down with deviled eggs, sweet pickles, a couple pieces of pie and a couple cookies. Then they pass out sack lunches that are for dinner. After they pass those items they pass out the lunch tray and this year we had a roll, potato salad, stuffing, cranberry sauce, and some roast beef and ham. I gave the meat to my neighbor and, man, was he happy. I get the craziest responses when I give meat away, but I'm trying to stick to my vegetarian diet.
After lunch I went out to recreation. I haven't been out of my cell for anything but my showers for the past three days, so I really needed to get out. Depression sucks and I find myself now just trying to avoid people when I get like that. Everyone just wants to get in your business. I know it's out of concern, mostly, but… I did listen to KDOL, though, and received a wonderful call on the radio. It immediately lifted my spirits.
So, I read the craziest article in the Dallas Morning News last week that I had been meaning to address. It was pure hogwash. The article focused on people (mainly women) who write to death row prisoners. I mean, the journalist really put a bashing on those who show compassion, friendship or love to us, and while some of what the reporter wrote is true (such as inmates who take advantage of pen pals) the bulk of it was just hogwash. The purpose of the article was the demean those who get involved with our lives. They talked to some woman who works in the Lake Livingston Motel who was quoted as saying, "Sometimes when I see people coming to visit these men on death row I just want to shake them and say, "Are you stupid? They just conning you!" Of course she has no problem taking these people's money to keep her motel running…
Other than the stigma of being on death row, I ask what is the difference between mak-
The other thing the reporter wrote that is mostly false is saying that guys trade personal pictures like baseball cards. I've been locked up 12 years and have never seen anyone trade off personal photos of their girl friends or wives like it's a Topps Baseball card (no gum included). Now, there are places where you can buy pictures of scantily clad women for stamps or money orders, and I have seen those traded like baseball cards, but not personal photos. There are too many jealous and insecure men back here for that to happen. Dudes would be trying to strangle each other.
Whatever happened to journalistic integrity? It was a fluff piece. Garbage. Sensationalis-
I know, I'm rambling. I can't even tell you the date of the article. I think it was Sunday, December 9th, 2007 or something.
Agh!! The past month has sucked so bad I can't even get my thoughts clear.
I was reading something recently and ran across a touching poem written in the 1500's by a saint named Juan de Santo Matias. The poem is called "Sin arrimo y con arrimo" or "Without Help and With help."
Without help and with help
Without light and living in the darkness
Everything consumes me.
My soul is in threads.
From everything, something is grown
And uplifted by itself
Into life filled with ecstasy and richness
Only a being God helped.
For that reason it will be said,
The thing I most cherish
That my soul see itself even now.
Without help and with help.
The holidays are over and things are getting back to normal here on Polunsky Unit. Well, except for New Years, that is. It's weird because when I go up and down the dial on my radio the x-
Today was okay. I went outside in nippy weather to play basketball. I just needed to run off some stress and the holiday blues. I had to find a sucker and talked my neighbor into it. We played about 18 games and I won every single one. Though, I don't recommend running in the cold! The air ran straight through my lungs and I was coughing and hack-
An interesting thing happened today that kind of touched me. A guard popped by to tell me he was quitting. He said, "I'm gone. Hope everything works out for you." I was kind of confused and asked, "You're gone?" He replied, "Yeah, I'm quitting. I just wanted to wish you good luck on your appeals and I hope you get off from back here. You don't belong back here." He had told me before that he had been following my case, so I was touched that he would stop by to tell me that.
It's a weird feeling because many guys here on Ad-
Peace and love.
Madness!!! Someone on E-
It's Friday. Man, is this week flying by. I've just been sitting here going through my property, cleaning and clearing things out for my return to Dallas. I have to do this so that the property officer won't go in and clean me out of their own accord. I had to also find out through the laundry officer how to get my blanket and jacket back when I re-
I realized that when I do go back to Dallas I'll probably get little sleep. My first couple of nights will take some adjusting to because it's incredibly loud, but it is what it is and I take it all in stride.
I was incredibly saddened about the news that Benizier Bhutto was assassinated. Hearing the old interviews she sounds truly sincere in her love for the people of Pakistan. What a crazy world we live in.
Not much else is going on today. The day is winding down and I've got the radio on. Right now RadioHeads' "Body Snatcher" is on. Damn good song. Another song I'm really enjoying at the moment is The Killers cover of Joy Division's "Shadow Play." Sick! (in a good way).
Peace and love.
Wow. One more day to the year. It makes me kind of anxious. Today started off well. Yesterday was incredibly boring and I just kicked back, but today I've been moving since the second I hopped out of bed. Last night I made a friendly bet with my neighbor to see who could be in the best shape by May. We're both in pretty bad shape so it should be interesting. I got up and exercised and then cleaned up and did laundry. Now I'm catch-
It's really nice outside. It'd be nicer to get out and play some ball. Maybe tomorrow be-
It's New Year's Eve and 9:41 P.M. I'm currently listening to 94.5 The Buzz, a radio sta-
I started my New Year's Eve by listening to KDOL and hoping on a phone call to bring in the new year, but I didn't get one… Seems to be the case here lately, but what can you do? I'm kind of tired of getting my hopes up. But it all gets to my goal-
starts better than it ended. I'm tired of being disappointed by people. Ah, that's hypocrit-
Today was okay. I went to recreation and goofed around, exercised a bit and came back to my cell and stared at the wall. Lots of fun.
Happy New Year. Peace.