Con las mueblas en la mama bicho boca… I’ve taken to speaking jibber-jabber Spanglish about 50 percent of the time in here. I’m getting pretty good at it. This dorm environment is wearing me down. Non-stop noise and nonsense, which makes sense, because county jails are designed to make people go crazy and cop unwise pleas to end the madness. Just this morning, my bunky was unexpectedly woken at 4:30 AM for a court date he had no idea about. They made him wait in a holding cell for a couple hours, shackled him, made him wait a few more hours, stuck him in another holding pen, and then brought him back here without saying sorry. He didn’t even see the judge. This is an awful thing called a “dry run,” and I’ve seen it happen countless times in the past month. They’re doing it to my bunky because he put in for a bail reduction—he’s currently being held on a $750,000 bond for a Burg 3 (aka breaking and entering), despite never having a felony or a violent crime conviction.
It’s really hard to believe that this shit is true. We are such slaves to incompetency it would be laughable except our freedom is on the line and lots of us really didn’t do shit. I was supposed to have my parole hearing to decide my fate next week, but they inexplicably woke me up a couple mornings ago and told me to get ready for my hearing. I guess it's better to be early than late, but all of my letters of support and paperwork were in the mail and they were necessary to ensure a fair hearing.
In court, first they claimed I was arrested with drugs on a date when I was in jail already. They wanted to send me upstate for three more months for that, but I finally convinced them I couldn’t have gotten arrested when I was incarcerated, and that I was simply here for a curfew violation. The evil-fuck prosecutor lady said, “Fine,” didn’t apologize for trying to put me in a cage for something I didn’t do, and asked me to come back in two weeks once I had my paperwork. I said, “Whoa, whoa… I don’t want to be here for a few more weeks.” Unbelievably, the judge said, “OK, I’ll let him go right now,” but I was brought back down to Earth when the prosecutor lady told me that the jail wouldn’t let me out until I had paperwork for a re-entry program stating I had an appointment upon release.
Basically, I got exonerated and could go free! But why couldn’t they have told me this weeks ago? I could have been preparing the paperwork I needed this whole time, but instead, I’m stuck in here waiting for some retarded bureaucrat who doesn’t get paid enough to give a hump to send a fax come to my rescue. So yeah, I’m going a little crazy. I’ve said it once, and I’ll say it again: DON’T GET CAUGHT.
I’m not the only one going crazy in here. You put 45 dudes in one big room and shit gets hectic. Our new thing right now is exploiting ignorant white guys by making them do Jackass-type shit for peanuts. This old drug addict named Jim-Bob from Peekskill (who has a tattoo of a naked broad getting a big dick up in her on his forearm) has been eating water bugs from the dirty bathroom, sniffin’ Ramen noodle seasoning packets, and boofing Atomic Fireballs then doing jumping jacks. He gets some soup or Honeybuns for his troubles and now we have some new white kid in here doing the same stuff. It’s sad because they have no dough and they just want some friends so they’ll do whatever to entertain us. It went to a new level last night when one of these honkys put Magic Shave on his eyebrows for ten Honeybuns. He’s an ugly kid anyway—he looks like a meth addict and weighs about 120 pounds. Without the eyebrows, even the COs are making fun of him, to the point where he basically hides under the covers all day. Kinda sad.
The other entertainment in here is jailhouse drama. Just the other day, a crackhead with possibly the ugliest face I’ve ever seen (think Mr. Bean on crack with black teeth) had his commissary bag stolen. Turns out the skinny freak who killed his eyebrows for ten Honeybuns saw Jim-Bob do the thieving. Everyone just went crazy before my eyes, going through all Jim-Bob’s shit, and they found the stolen goods. We have eyes in the sky in here, so all the inmates are plotting on how to fuck Jim-Bob up without the camera catching it. Jim-Bob is my milk hookup so I’m torn on whether I want to see him get lit up. I’m pretty detached about it. For the most part, I just sit on my top bunk and it’s like watching TV.
Most days this place is a fucking looneybin. If only we had cameras in here. I guarantee the block I’m in is far more watchable than Gilligan’s Island, or at least half the bullshit reality shows y’all watch. If I had a camera in here for even a day, I’d make some BONE-INDUCING footage for the whole world to see. You’d have to see it to believe it.
I have chunks of soap in my socks, Ramen noodles cooking in a garbage bag, polyester boxers for a pillowcase, dirty T-shirts for a pillow, and a sore testicle. I’m becoming overwhelmed with layers of unbonerable slime. That doesn’t mean I don’t need to get my daily dose of laughs, so now I’m going to get my braindead dummy son-son to sniff a multivitamin. Hopefully, he pukes.
Bert Burykill is the pseudonym of our prison correspondent, who is currently serving time in a prison in New York. When he's not in jail he tweets here. Previously on Pen Pals:
La Longue Nuit de Mégantic
VICE Special: VICE Eats with John Besh
All the Books I Read in 2013
Live Streaming the Ukrainian Revolt
The Brown Mountain State
Crony Capitalism and Crushed Dissent in Angola
A Bunny Was Decapitated in an Ongoing Blood Feud Between Figure Skaters
'I Will Die Soon; I Know That': Meeting the Real Christiane F
I Went to a Japanese Wine Spa
I Spent a Month Living in a Romanian Sexcam Studio