Wednesday, June 21, 2017

William Myrl; Letters to No One (79)

Dear No One,

Country was a round faced fluff bear of a man, mighty and full of farts. He came to me in the dead of night and said, "I'm sure glad you're white." It's what we all think, at first. People naturally come together in tribes, like with like, and the most obvious sieve is color. The chow hall is gradated, white up front, mixed, and black in the back farthest from the CO. This is not racism, it is just the way things happen when you don't try to force it. 

Country was not an educated man, but he was wise in the ways of the world. He complained that all the people who sold drugs here were actually junkies, the prices were spiked because they really didn't want to let the product go. After he turned down a few tall pitches he swore off the game, unless the opportunity came for him to move product himself, but that wasn't something he looked for. He taught me how to make floss out of the plastic sleeve saltine crackers come in, and how to weave it into rope if I ever wanted to hang myself. He showed me how to make a cutting disk out of a peanut butter lid, and taught me a few ramen recipes that were new to me.

Country liked cars, four wheelers, women, and crystal. He had a good girl at home who was waiting for him, against all good sense, and he talked to her on the phone twice a day, or thrice. There was also an ex who emailed him photos of herself, mildly suggestive selfies. He said he wanted to hit it one good time before getting serious with the old lady. 

As a cell partner, he was generous with his relative wealth. We both bought as much popcorn as we could and split a bag most nights. When he went to store he would blow everything he had in one go and we'd eat like MSG czars for a week or two, then fall back on my supply of ramen and pickles for a more conservative period until he had money again. He liked to play in a rowdy, brotherly way, grabbing nipples and showing his ass. Not at the same time. At his insistence I started exercising again, basic body weight stuff, and finally got over the nerve pain in my shoulders. His sister was in jail, then out of jail, and he complained that she was siphoning money from their mom he should have been getting. His sister was a bit of a junkie as well. Country wasn't, he was a cook, a producer when it suited him. And he almost couldn't help himself. 

When they took him out, it was over three gallons of wine in his property box. I was sorry to see him go, as he was the most comfortable celly I'd ever had, and it would have been a hell of a party.

Hearts and Stars

William Myrl
June 15 2017

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