Thursday, November 12, 2015

William Myrl; Letters to No One (31)

Dear No One,
We had a shakedown. What this means is that we stayed in our cells for a few days, ate in, as it were, and then were searched. The thoroughness of the search varies dependent upon the CO who visits you. Whatever happens, you get to waggle your balls around for someone. There are a few perks to this life, and being stripped searched is one of them. It has to be worse for them than it is for us. I don't have to look at a bunch of naked assholes, and any awkwardness I once felt about revealing myself to a stranger in a uniform has long since evaporated. It’s a routine now. Tuck in your shirt, take off your pants, whichever.
It is extraordinarily hot in our cell, because we are next to the furnace, and the COs who shook us down commented on it at length. Normally, we have a laundry bag over the vent to divert some of it. This came off, and my celly retired his fan so they had the full brunt of the heat while they were in here. I had gone quite out of my way to hide my porn,  it’s illegal now, if you’ll recall, and it was not found. No one ever checks everything, and paper products aren't exactly easy to pick out in cells full of papers. There isn't much point to the shakedowns, but they have to do them. There is so much warning that getting caught with something can only be one's own fault. It keeps us from having too much stuff, detritus, and oversized contraband.
Did I tell you about the time we had an oven? Okay, you take two ramen boxes to make the frame. You line the inside with aluminum and run some steel wool zig zag through soda can tabs all down the top of the oven, with an air gap from the roof, obviously. Get a cord and hook it up to the steel wool, put a cardboard flap as the oven door. Voila, the wool heats up, heating the oven. It pops if there are kinks in the wool, so work them out. The aluminum is all soda cans, and the steel scrubby can be bought from someone who works in the kitchen. It could be any size, but the ramen boxes are convenient if you can get them. The plug can be cut off an old fan, or put together by hand if all you’ve got is wire from a broken bubble tv or what have you. This thing doesn't cook fast, but it is better than anything else we can get.

Now I have to leave you. ‘Heroes’ is on.

William Myrl (31)

William Myrl; Letters to No One (30)

Dear No One,

I'm a useless bastard. I haven't done anything today, and I'm not even bothering with commas anymore. Its Friday, my weekend, and most of the morning went to DnD. I've sworn off it in general, but this was a special appearance where I got to try to ruin another guy's game by killing off the party with characters I had built the night before. I'm bored just writing about it.

Interesting dynamic at work. Jack, the fellow who got me the clerk job, essentially runs the place. The manager is old and portly and has no goal in life but to minimize stress before he retires. Jack doesn't demand anything of anyone, but he politely coerces, and convinces you this new way of doing things was the one you wished for all along. I could never replace him, because I don't care enough, don't have the impetus to spare from tasks that actually matter to me. Now that the kiosk is working and my new player is in hand, I have to begin producing content for the site again. I had been working on M4. Now I will switch off to my serial story, The Lady in the Labyrinth- A Tale of Mythopoeia. Its going to be a hoot.

I sent in my application to Prison Pen Pals about a week ago. I'm not sure what to expect. I did a self portrait for the profile pic. Its more accurate than the sub-optimal selfie on my front page. My ad is specific about my circumstances and vague about myself. I include a poem at the end, and it is difficult to imagine there is anyone more than I am floating around on that website.

I had my dad look them up, and he spent ten minutes on the phone narrating the difficulty of finding the regular ads. Apparently, the people who pay extra are easy to access, and the basics are almost maliciously obscured. So I sent in for the gold star account, they literally paste a gold star next to your name. Its the account a step above the normies.
As I have a job now, I can afford to splurge on exactly this sort of nonsense. My address is already on my website, but so far none of my ten to fifteen loyal readers has deigned to write me. So it is you and I and my family until they do.

Letter writing is odd, and many of my confreres avoid the obligation. The fellows who sign up for the pen pal services usually do so hoping to "strike", to find someone who they can lie to and convince to send them money. I too, am looking to strike, though it is not money orders I covet. I will be trying to chivy more votes on webfictionguide. Wish me favor.

I do have one pen pal now. And in that particular case it is enough to have the letters and the words. An engaging correspondent and a friend, she is the sort of person I would hope to connect with through PPP(a truly awful acronym); but I would settle for the votes.

Ill let you know if anything comes of it.

William Myrl (30)0