The Hole

I write this morning a preview of a coming attraction.

There is a brother here who I intended to spend some more time with before his release, to nail down certain facts and aspects of his case which, after only one interview session, still elude me. For now, I’ll just say this about him- he’s here on a flaky charge, and a sad, bullshit sentence.

The reason I jump to him now is- last night he was taken to the “hole”. Even if he did something to deserve it, this would be very regrettable; since he’s 70 and two weeks away from release. It’s disgraceful.

He could not be, demographically, more different than the 30 yr old in the cell next to his. They share one similarity however, which until now was the source of great amusement to all in the unit- the same first and last name.*

Apparently, some inappropriate behavior came to the attention of someone in charge here, the culprit of which was identified by last name only. The common assumption among us is that when the decision-maker went down the list of last names, his finger came to rest on the older of the two, and a guard was dispatched to take him to the “hole”.

Reportedly, the guard said as he was carrying out his duty, that he knew the old guy couldn’t be the right one, and that he expected to be back soon for the younger one.

Footnote: One of my next inmate stories will be about an oncologist here, who told me recently that his experience in the prison system has led him to promote the idea, that just as doctors have to go thru internships and residencies before being permitted to make life-altering decision on patients, judges should be required to experience prison life from the inside, before blithely sentencing others to it. I mention this because, when I think of this guy, now in the “hole”, I lay it all at the feet of, not his prosecutor, but the judge.

One last note, I recently witnessed a scrawny 60 yr old being sent to the hole for a week (on a bogus matter, I might add). He seems to have endured it, none the worse for the wear. May the same be true of my 70 yr old friend.