Wednesday, June 15, 2011

The Hearts And Minds Of Tomorrow

About two years ago (thereabout) before I had left the Hive, the head of training called me and asked me if I wanted to be a Field Training Officer. These are the people who take the new hires fresh out of the academy and teach them to apply what they learned in the books to life inside the fence.

I had my doubts. I'm impatient sometimes. I expect people to understand what I say and follow my directions and I get a little short when they don't.

Plus, I'm just weird at times. Well, only when I'm awake.

But at the time he was short of FTO's and needed the help and I said yes, I would do it.

Then I never heard from him again.

I kind of figured he read my blog and said "Well, we don't want that lunatic training our new people! They'd get all screwed up!"

Last week I got an email from him saying he's sorry he forgot about me, but was I still interested?

Against my better judgement, I said yes again.

And once again, I never heard anything back. Figured I was probably good for another two years of peace.

The other day somebody said "Hey, I just voted for you in an email!" Ummm... What? I didn't get an email about any voting!

It seems that they sent an email out to the other FTO's with a list of the new candidates for them to recommend them or not, as they saw fit. That's why I didn't get one.

But half a dozen people have said "I voted for you." during the last week. Enough to make me a bit nervous.

Do they really think that I'm the right person to be molding the hearts and minds of the next generation of corrections officers?

That's just freaking crazy.

But then when I look at some of the real lunatics we have working here, especially the ones who have been here since Adam was on OJT, I don't look so bad in comparison.

And tomorrow (Oops, today I mean) will be my eighth year anniversary with the department.

Holy snap! Have I been doing this for eight years already? Wow.

Well, as I told the head of training in my reply, I don't always know the right things to do but I do know most of the wrong things to do and I can point out a good bunch of those. Hopefully I can impart something that will keep someone from getting hurt, and that's my main goal.

I'll do my best.

That is, if I ever hear from him again.

Tomorrow... Uh, today.... Aw, frack it. Thursday will be the National Hollerin' Contest Day. I'm fetchin' my earplugs! It will also be Bloomsday, Fudge Day and Recess At Work Day.

In case you were wondering, Bloomsday is a celebration of 'Ulysses', the novel by James Joyce. It's named after the main character, Leopold Bloom, and usually involves lots of drinking and general merriment.

Sounds like a pretty good holiday to me!


  1. Honestly, you sound like the best person for the job. I get the sense, at least from reading this, that you have the sensitivity, the perceptiveness, the humor, the honesty, and the intelligence that others in your field may lack. I think that the general public gets the sense that prison guards (mostly thanks to movies) are a brutal and unscrupulous lot, somewhat tainted from the environment that they work in. Having never been to a prison, of course, I have no real way of knowing how near or how far this image is from the truth. However, I get the impression that you are a humane person, yet not "soft" or naive. You seem to maintain a good degree of detachment from the inmates, which I imagine requires a certain delicate balance, close enough to be aware of what's going on with them, but distant enough not to be drawn in by their shenanigans. You seem to have a good perspective on the situation as a whole, and I don't see anyone slipping much past you. Granted, I'm evaluating all this from a very obscure position, but it seems to me that these are all good qualities to pass on to future guards.

  2. You will make a wonderful FTO. We need more like you training our new officers. Now maybe we can get some good ones. I have faith in ya.
    Miz Twang.

  3. I shall not compete with Bryan’s excellent comment, just add my signature to it.

  4. I know you very well and I must say, Bryan hit the nail on the head. You would be a fantastic FTO and if anybody in charge reads this, Rev has my vote! was good to see you last night!! I hangin' out.

  5. I meant to say "I MISS hanging out." That's what I get for not proof-reading! And for having a dog sitting on my lap while I'm typing,

  6. Bryan is spot on, but I'm still trying to figure out what the picture of the cat has to do with anything.
    \It Just Got Interesting

  7. @Brent: A picture that cute doesn't need a point ;)

  8. Bryan- Most people do have that opinion about us. Little more than thugs ourselves. One of the reasons (besides just blowing off steam) that I started writing this. I'm not quite the superman you make me out to be, but in my mind I'm bloody close. (grin)

    Miz Twang- You are so sweet. I'll do it if I have the Watcher backing me up so I don't make a fool of myself more than I want to. Deal?

    Vincent- Thank you, Sir.

    Peggy Sue- An endorsement from you goes a long way in my book. I'll try to live up to it. And typing with a puppy in your lap isn't conducive to coherence, is it? (grin)

    Brent- I started looking for pictures of teachers and wandered in Harry Potter somehow then found that picture and couldn't pass it up... Silly, I know.

  9. Bryan- I couldn't help myself.

  10. I hope you win.

    Or...maybe you don't want to win. In that case, I hope you don't win.

    Whichever matches your mood best, I guess. I'm just here to be supportive.