Tuesday, July 31, 2012

Crunching The Numbers

I was out in front of dining the other day, taking my knuckleheads to chow, when Sergeant Major drove up on the cart to chat. He mentioned that we were getting six new OJT's starting on Monday.

I asked him how many he thought would end up staying or being worth the paper they were printed on.

He said maybe one. I replied that he was probably right. We've gotten some real poozers in some of the last groups of OJT's and hardly any of them have worked out.

We are lucky if we keep one in six. And double lucky if they turn out to be handy to have around and not just another semi-warm body to fill a space.

Tonight I was down an officer in my house. That snaphead Femur called out sick again and Lt Sienna didn't have anyone to send me. Then he called back later and said he was sending me two OJT's to make up for the loss.

Sometimes that works out well and sometimes it's more trouble that it's worth. I can't actually use them to fill a spot, but I can have them assist my officers when they need it.

One was a rehire. She used to work at another camp eight years ago then left to do other things. A lot of things have changed in eight years but she knew the basics and wasn't timid around the offenders so she was a real asset in the house this evening.

The other guy was new to the department, but handled himself like an old pro. Knew when to ask questions and when to lend a hand and when to stand back and watch. Says he was a professional diver for twenty years. I figure someone who can do that sort of thing that long and still be alive and in one piece must have a good head on their shoulders.

So we got two good ones. If we can just keep them long enough, we might just beat the odds.

That would be something.

Tuesday I'm going to be out on the yard and it's going to be blistering hot. I think I'll just skip the food and fill my lunchbox with frozen water bottles, gatorade and popsicles.

On top of that it's going to be Parent's Day, Uncommon Instruments Awareness Day and Jump For Jelly Beans Day.

Go ahead and jump....... Might as well jump!

Monday, July 30, 2012

Like A Menagerie

Working in a prison set out in an rural setting like I do here in Raccoon City poses some extra challenges sometimes.

And also supplies some extra entertainment now and then.

The amazing number of critters that we might run across inside the fence on any given day is startling, sometimes.

Of course we have the resident cockroaches. Spiders, flies and creepy crawly bugs of all sorts.

I've written about the skunks several times. The population often gets so thick that we have to have them live trapped and taken away. The same thing with the feral cat population. At any given time there are probably two dozen cats inside the fence. The often get live trapped and hauled away as well.

We probably have enough mice to feed a hundred cats. They are everywhere. The snakes help keep the mice down as well.

There are two or three hawks nesting in a tree in the yard outside of 10 house. I have also seen one or two good sized owls. And because we have so many trees, there are hundreds of birds of all sorts to watch every day. And along with the birds we have an almost equal number of squirrels running around.

Dozens of wild rabbits run in and out of the fence. Many of the smarter ones stay inside the concertina wire on the perimeter so the hawks and owls won't get them.

Possums, foxes, groundhogs, bats, moles... the occasional loose dog. A good sized herd of deer just outside the fence down by the training building. They can't be hunted on state property so they stay safe. But I know a good number of our staff look at those deer with mayhem and trophies and deer jerky in their hearts.

I'm pretty sure if you took an accurate count of critters bigger than your fist they would outnumber the humans at least two to one.

Some nights I feel like Dr Doolittle.

If I could talk with the animals......

Monday is going to be National Cheesecake Day.

And when you have cheesecake, you don't need any other reason to celebrate.

Sunday, July 29, 2012

Telling on Myself

Sometimes I am such a buffoon that I wonder that they even keep me employed, let alone promoted me.

Maybe just for entertainment, because when I do stupid things I always tell on myself.

I went out back of the house to have a smoke and a cuppa coffee. They'd recently harvested one of the garden plots and toted the stuff off to a local food pantry and then reseeded the plot again. I didn't know they had reseeded it, the plot just looked like bare dirt, but there was a sprinkler in the middle of that dirt, whisking away and turning the plot into mud.

I walked out further to look and got kind of engrossed in watching the action of the sprinkler. How that little arm hits the stream of water and bounces back and the motion of the counterweight rotates the sprinkler head and then the spring sends it back into the stream of water again.

It's freaking brilliant. And so simple. But brilliant, nonetheless.

Even just the sound of it is iconic. You could play a recording of that noise to almost anybody in the world (anybody with a lawn or a crop, anyway) and they would know that it's a sprinkler.

I was even enjoying watching the little spray of water that shot off the side of the stream whenever the arm hit it. I just stood there and enjoyed the moment.

When the first drop of water hit my boot I had just a brief second to think "Really?"

Then "Blat! Blat! Blat!" I get nailed by the water. It puts my cigarette out and splashes right into my coffee, immediately making it too cold and weak to finish.

With water droplets all over my face and glasses, I turn around to make sure nobody is out there to see. And I scan the windows to ensure there are no hysterically laughing inmates either.

It cooled off everything but my face, which was mysteriously red for a few minutes.

I think from now on I'll do my sprinkler watching from a distance.

So, to change the subject... Sunday is going to be Cheese Sacrifice Purchase Day. Look that one up. It's also going to be Lasagna Day, National Chicken Wing Day and Rain Day.

I've had my rain already, thanks.

Saturday, July 28, 2012

Just To Be Annoying

Several things just jumped right out today to be intentionally annoying.

Well, two anyway. But sometimes they were in collusion with each other to be even more annoying than the sum of their parts.

We have a portable metal detector that is slowly making it's way around the camp. It's the one they set up months ago in the chow hall that drove everybody crazy. Then It went down to 30 house and drove everybody crazy again down there.

Now it's in my house. Right in the freaking narrow front hallway that was a bottleneck for offender movement before and now is even more of a pain in the butt.

Not only does it impede the doorway it also takes two officers to monitor the stupid thing. And even running them through randomly slows things up and it takes forever to release the house for chow or yard or anything.

Plus it makes this really annoying beeping sound when it goes off. As a certain intentionally annoying but nameless

officer discovered. He discovered that not only did it make a really annoying noise, but he also discovered that that noise really really annoyed me.

Needless to say he ran through the thing and set it off as often as humanly possible. He even went so far as to stand still in the thing (wearing his full duty belt and radio, of course) for long minutes while it went "Deelde deedle deedle deedle deedle deedle" until I threatened to circumcise him with the snappy thing on my clipboard if he didn't stop.

I should have done it then and had it over with.

That threat didn't deter him later in the evening from casually sticking an arm or a leg or his fundament in the thing and making it beep at random intervals.

I finally had to resort to the rubber bands to make him stop. He was still limping a little when we left this evening. I hated to do it, but he left me no choice.

And just to prove that I'm a fair and unbiased reporter of events, I have left him entirely nameless.
Like Jack Webb said: "Only the names have been changed to protect the innocent."

See what I have to put up with?

Is it no wonder I am horribly aged and twisted beyond my years? Sheesh!

Saturday is going to be National Milk Chocolate Day, Buffalo Soldiers Day, National Dance Day, National Day of the Cowboy and World Hepatitis Day.

Put on your red shoes and dance the blues.......... Let's dance!

Thursday, July 26, 2012

Knocked The Off Their Square

So last night I hear a call over the radio "Anyone wishing to work a day off tomorrow, call the Lieutenant."

Heck, I'd been number one on the overtime list for five days running and I knew my luck was running out, so I called.

"Hey, LT! Need any Sergeants?"

"No, but I can work you as a COI, if you don't care."

"I don't care. I just want off the list."

So I get to come in and work 10 house. Up in F-wing, all by myself. Sgt Tiberius had already come in to work the house (since it was his day) and the offenders had all seen him already.

So it really threw them when I came in and settled into the F-wing office.

"Sarge, you just filling in until our regular wing officer gets here?"

"Nope. I'm your wing officer tonight."

"Oh." He scurries back around the corner and I hear whispering. Presently another inmate rounds the corner and knocks at my door.

"So Sarge, who is going to be our wing officer tonight?" Trying to act all innocent and casual about it.

"I told your buddy back there already. Me. I'll be here all night."

"My buddy? Oh! Ha ha. That's funny Sarge. You're a funny guy. Well.... I gotta go.." And back around the corner he goes and more whispering.

I guess they finally got the message that I was staying. And you know what? They were as good as gold for me all night long.

Maybe we should do that more often. I wonder what would happen if I talked a Lieutenant into working F-wing for a night?

They'd poop their little pants.

It looks like Thursday is going to be All Or Nothing Day, One Voice (whatever that means) and National Chili Dog Day.

At least it aint friggin' ice cream again! Woof!

Tuesday, July 24, 2012

A One Sided Conversation

They stuck me down in the wobblehead house tonight for my utility night. The first time I have been in a regular housing unit in quite a long time.

But it was chock full of wobbleheads so we were all well entertained.

I'm doing a wing walk just for something to do and there's this inmate standing at one of the microwaves heating up a Ramen soup or something. And he's wearing this t-shirt that is just little more than tatters.

I said "That shirt is more holes than shirt!"

He said "What?"

"Man, you can wear a shirt like that in a prison! They'll think it's an escape tool!"


"You could throw that up against the fence and just climb through one of the holes!"

"What?" I was quickly tiring of this game. It was like sandblasting a soup cracker.

"Just throw that shirt away and get another one, okay?"

"Oh.... okay."

Bad jokes are entirely wasted among the wobbleheads.

I guess you'll be getting an extra post from me this week as I am working my day off tomorrow. I have been #1 on the overtime list for five days running and I have just been lucky that none of the midnights Sergeants have called in. So I'm working a day off to get back to the bottom of the list again.


Wednesday is going to be Threading The Needle Day, Merry-Go-Round Day and National Hot Fudge Sundae Day.

Jeez! Stop with the ice cream, already! And all of the Canadians I know are demanding I buy them breakfast! Sheesh!

Monday, July 23, 2012

Mad At Blogger

I am so mad at Blogger right now I could spit.

Just spent twenty minutes writing a post. The whole time I'm writing it the autosave is flickering at the bottom, saving..... supposedly saving my work once every minute..

Go to post the sucker and it kicks me out to a 404 page.

And when I go to get my saved page? There's nothing there but the picture and the first sentence!

I was DONE for fracks sake!

And I'm not in the mood to write that all over again. It never works right the second time.

Stupid blogger....

Tuesday is going to be Amelia Earhart Day, Tell An Old Joke Day, Cousins Day and Tequila Day.

I'm so mad right now I could drink some tequila.

And I really hate that stuff.

Sunday, July 22, 2012


One day this week while I wasn't there, maintenance came into 10 house and put a cage door in front of the nurses office. Apparently someone's idea was that the nurse could go into the office and lock the cage door and hand out medication to the knuckleheads and they wouldn't be able to actually walk into the office.

Well, there's a couple of things wrong with that plan.

One, they never asked the nurses anything about it and they all say they don't want to do it that way for several reasons. And I've heard that the day shift nurse is going to be really pissed off when she sees that cage door.

I know her. She is a scary woman. They'll be lucky if she doesn't rip it off the hinges and throw it down the hallway.

Scary woman.

And two, when they hung the door and welded on the lock mechanism they put it on the outside of the door. So in order to secure it someone would have to do it from the outside. And the same to open it again.

This cage door will only work if you are leaving the room and not entering it. And the door already has a good lock on it so why bother?

We have so many things that are broken that we can't get fixed. Maintenance has no time and no money to fix the things that we really need. But they can spend time and money on things that nobody wants and don't work right anyway.

Welcome to the Department of Freaking Corrections.

Have a seat, pal. You'll be waiting awhile.

Monday morning is going to dawn bright and early as National Vanilla Ice Cream Day (really? Again with the ice cream? WTS?), Hot Enough For Ya Day, Gorgeous Grandma Day and Treat A Canadian To Breakfast Day.

Okay, I made one of those up. I'll leave it up to you to decide which one.

Going To Bed

For some stupid reason I only got about 2-1/2 hours of sleep last night.

Had some squirrely dreams that startled me awake. Don't know what's up with that.

Then when I got to work we had no cart for the yard. Ours was down with a flat tire and all of our spares have been taken away and hidden somewhere. So we had to walk everywhere.

Anyway, I'm both tired and bushed.

Sunday is going to be Rat catcher’s Day. And for a prison, that's kind of fitting, wouldn't you say?

Saturday, July 21, 2012

That's Not Really What It's Used For!

Last year the institution broke down and bought a couple dozen "snake cams", or inspection cameras, for use while searching.

They have about an 18 in probe with a camera lens on one end and a video monitor on the hand held part. Great for looking under things and in holes in the walls and above the ceiling tiles and stuff. All.... or almost all of the tight little hidey holes that inmates like to stash stuff that they don't want found.

I'm sure you know where this is going...

The other day Woodman was down in laundry checking out their snake cam. One of the new square staff came up and said "Hey! What's that thing for?"

Being the consummate deviate that he is, Woodman said "If we think an inmate has stashed something in his butt, we can just run this sucker right up in there and see what he's hiding!" And to demonstrate he held the camera end up and kind of ran it up into the air.

The poor woman turned white and said "Oh my Gawd! That's disgusting!" Then she ran off to tell one of the other ladies what he was doing.

He was still laughing about that a couple of days later.

And a couple of days after he told me about it, I'm still laughing too.

By now I'm sure you have realized that kind of humor tickles me.

It's a sick profession.

But you laughed too. I heard you.

Saturday is going to be National Tug-Of-War Tournament Day, Woodie Wagon Day, Celebration Of The Horse Day, Legal Drinking Age Day and National Junk Food Day.

Yay junk food!

Wednesday, July 18, 2012


Every freaking day for seven freaking months I have been carrying that stupid hat to work.

Every single freaking day.

And usually carrying it or strapping it to my lunchbox because it's too dang hot to wear the stupid thing.

This afternoon I stepped outside and felt how hot and humid it was and I said "You know what? I'm not bringing the stupid hat today. It's not supposed to rain so I'm leaving that thing at home!"

Of course you know what happened next.

Just as soon as I stepped through the door of the control center and inside the fence it started pouring down. I just stood there for about five minutes under the awning, watching it rain thinking "Fuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuuug!" Knew it would take me twenty minutes to drive home for the hat, so that wasn't an option.

Finally I just shrugged and walked out into the downpour through the fence over to central. Of course everyone else came over before it started raining, so they were sitting inside nice and dry. Me, I am completely soaked. I grab a handful of paper towels and mop off my head and clean my glasses.

JonT comes up to me and says "I've heard the expression before but never really knew what they meant by it. But you look just like a drowned rat!"

Thanks pal. I needed that.

Grab my lunchbox and slog my way up to the shack in the rain. I'm not really getting any wetter at this point. Already reached the saturation point.

A couple of day shift folks are leaving and one of them says "This rain feels kind of good!" To which I reply "Yeah, but my underwear is already soaking wet and my day just started!"

What I didn't realize was that somewhere between central and the shack the rain got to my radio and shorted something out, which left my mike locked open and everyone on the camp now knew that my underwear was wet. It apparently broadcast loud and clear.

**sigh** Oh, boy.

By the time I got that sorted out..... and for the rest of the night really, I had to listen to everyone commenting about my underwear.

If nothing else, I was comic relief.

One more "of course" to add. When I went back up to get a new radio I ran out to the truck to get my raincoat. By that time, of course, it had quit raining.


Tomorrow (Wednesday) is going to be National Ice Cream Day and National Caviar Day. Hopefully not both at the same time. It will also be International Mandela Day.


Monday, July 16, 2012


It was kind of a funny moment. Things were kind of dull around the house. All of the knuckleheads were behaving themselves for a change.

I'm heading downstairs to smoke and walk around some when this skinny little kid comes out of E-wing carrying a bag of trash bigger than he is and probably outweighing him by at least ten pounds.

Our trash carts are on the first floor in the center of the atrium and there is an opening in between the stairways so they usually just drop the bags down one floor into the carts.

The kid wrestles the bag of trash up onto the railing. He looks at me and says "This will probably make alot of noise. It's pretty heavy." I just shrugged. I envisioned him missing the cart and scattering trash all over the atrium.

So he drops the bag into the empty cart. Makes a big bang, as the cart was empty.

Then as we watch, the cart starts rolling backwards from the impact. The kid says "Hey!" and the cart rolls down the three steps and flips over upside down, dumping the trash out onto the floor.

I said "That didn't work out like you planned, did it?" He looks down in dismay and starts walking down the stairs going "Aw, maaaannnn....."

While he's down there righting the cart and scooping it all back inside, Big D calls me from upstairs. He'd watched it all happen on the camera.

"Sarge, does that young man need any assistance down there?"

"Nope" I reply. "I believe he can handle it himself."

I come down and head for the door as he is finishing up and I heard him say "Next time I'll just carry it down the stairs!"

Wow. With thought processes like that I might never see that young man again.

Stranger things have happened.

So Tuesday I will be out on A-yard and it will be National Peach Ice Cream Day, Wrong Way Corrigan Day and Yellow Pig Day.

Hmm... I have never seen a yellow pig. Not sure if I ever want to, either.

My Own Secret Lair

I ran across this link awhile ago: http://realestate.yahoo.com/news/own-secret-submarine-norway-17-3-million-213439775.html

For a measly 17.3 million I could own an underground NATO submarine base in Norway.

It would be an excellent place to run my blog from, don'tcha think?

If I put up a Paypal donation link here, how long would it take to get enough money together?

Can you tell nothing happened tonight? Yeah, I guess so.

That's a good thing, tho. I'll count it as a "win."

Monday is going to be International Juggling Day, National Get Out Of The Doghouse Day, Global Hug Your Kids Day and National Corn Fritters Day.

Don't believe I have ever eaten a fritter. A Frito, but never a fritter.

I may have juggled a couple of them once, though.

Sunday, July 15, 2012

No Nobel Prize For Me...

I'm sure I'll get some flack about this post tomorrow.

I have two guys... officers... in my house that aren't getting along.

No names.... Let's just call them "T" and "C".

They only have to work together one day a week, but they just are not clicking together at all. And everybody can see it and it's driving us all crazy. More than one other officer and even a couple of inmates have come up to me and said "What's up with those two?"

C is fairly new to the house and T has been there for awhile. I thought it might be a good thing if T sort of mentored him on the way the house works, since they would be working together.

Well, that didn't work.

So tonight I pulled out all the stops and used humor where I thought I could get away with it and being blunt when I couldn't. I threatened this whole elaborate setup about getting them both in the elevator together then throwing the breaker for a few hours. Maybe lowering down a small disco ball and playing some Barry White until they gave in and made friends.

If I knew where the breaker was I would have given it some serious thought.

Towards the end of the night I considered seriously slapping them both across the chops and saying "Pull up your big girl panties and figure this out. You have to work together, so quit being a pair of Richards and talk to each other!"

P.S. If you don't get the reference, just ask yourself what is a suitable nickname for someone named Richard?

So, obviously I'm not going to be in the running for the Nobel Peace Prize anytime soon.

If I was still just a CO and could speak my mind more and get away with it, I'd just slap them both and say "Cut it out! You're pissing me off!"

I've done my bit to promote harmony in the house.

Now I'm just visualizing whirled peas.

Mmmm.... peas.....

Sunday is going to be National Tapioca Pudding Day and Respect Canada Day.

And with so perfect a day, who could ask for anything more?

Well, except for more pudding, maybe.

Saturday, July 14, 2012

Can He Do That?

Out on the yard this evening. B side. Since Sgt Archer is out on light duty with some broken bits and Sgt Uncle T is on restricted duty with more broken bits, we have all been filling in on the yards when necessary.

Anyway, standing outside B-dining with Lt Wyatt waiting for count to clear.



Checking my watch...

Waiting some more...

Aww..... snap. We knew what was coming next, of course.

"Send all workers back to their houses. Prepare for a Code 23 name and number count."

Man! That is going to delay mainline and everything is going to run late now.......

Just about the time they started rounding up the workers to send them back...

"Raccoon Station to all Raccoon City radio units. Cancel the Code 23. Code 21, Code 21. Count is clear. Resume normal operations."

Lt Wyatt and I just stopped and looked at each other.

I said "Can he do that?"

"He did it. So, I'm guessing so."

"I have never heard that done before. Not once."

"Me neither." he replied. "But, frack it. Let's roll with it."

And we went on with our day, a little unsure of what just happened, but back on schedule nonetheless.

Apparently right after the call to send the workers went out, someone called up and said "Oh snap! I screwed up my count. I've got one guy from here and one from here rather than two from there. I'm sorry." And that would have fixed the problem with count.

So when they called the Captain he said "Cancel the recount" and they did. Normally the rule is once you call a recount you continue it all the way to the end to make sure there isn't an escape. I'd never seen or heard of them cancelling a code 23 before.

He's the shift commander and we are supposed to do what he says, so we did what he said.

But I swear when they called to cancel the recount you could almost hear the whole camp pause and say "Really? Can he do that?"

Apparently, he can.

Saturday is going to be National Nude Day (Oh, lawsy lawsy. I do hope not), Bald In-Bald Out Day, Grange Day and Macaroni Day.

Stick that feather in your hat!

Wednesday, July 11, 2012

Almost Too Much Help

Last week when I was out on the yard we were almost hamstrung by a lack of staff. Two days this week we were running the house I was in short people because we didn't have the staff to cover everything.

We ran our butts off trying to cover everything and try to make sure that everybody was safe.\

Tonight I had so many children I didn't know what to do. I was tempted to beat them all soundly and send them to bed. But that would have gotten me frowned at, I'm sure.

Two officers are "assigned" to the yard. I started the afternoon out with four, figuring I would lose at least one or two of them as the night progressed. Instead, after library closed down, I got a fifth one.

What the......

Of course since we were overflowing with people, they found something for us to do. After the yards closed down they had us search the mattress factory. And they sent me four or five more officers from B side to assist.

Of course the place is an absolute nightmare to search. The building is well over a hundred years old and has nooks and crannies and little cubbyholes and storage closets all over the place. They don't just make the mattresses either. They also make inmate clothing like pants and shirts and coats and socks and aprons for food service and things like that. Even mop heads.

And the whole place is chock full of piles of mattress pads and rolls and bales of fabric and material and balls of string and bobbins of thread and stuff that I have absolutely no idea what it might be. There are entire rooms in that building that are not accessible because they are so full of stuff.

There's a locked tool room with all of the tools including all of the scissors and knives and seam rippers and awls and stuff. All of it is supposedly accounted for every day. But I know that there are also empty spots where somethings should be but aren't. How do I know where those things are?

It would take a hundred people and a forklift and several days to actually "search" that building. To examine everything and remove any potential weapons or other contraband that might be secreted there.

I had ten people and about an hour. We did the best we could. Found a few things that were iffy, but nothing of consequence. Pretty much just enough to let them know that we had been in there searching and maybe piss a few inmates and square staff off. That's about it.

But hey, we'll all get good entries in our files for participating in the search.


So here's the weekend lineup:
Wednesday is going to be National Cheer Up The Lonely Day, Bowlder's Day, Slurpee Day and National Blueberry Muffin Day.

Thursday will be National Pecan Pie Day, Simplicity Day, Chick-Fil-A Cow Appreciation Day and Embrace Your Geekness Day.

Friday will be Fool's Paradise Day, Collector Car Appreciation Day, Gruntled Workers Day and National French Fries Day.

Please celebrate responsibly.

Monday, July 9, 2012

The Stakes Are High

So the other day I got to work, early as is usual for me, and I'm standing outside Central shooting the snit and smoking with the other early birds. That's always my time to catch up on what's been happening since I was last at work.

Captain CJ (who is on day shift now, the poor thing) comes out for a last smoke of her shift and she's talking to someone else down the table. I overhear: "When I went out on B-side and saw those fracking vampire stakes I about had a fit. If one of my staff gets hurt with one of those I swear to Gawd I'll have somebody's head!"

Didn't have a clue what she was talking about until I went over to B side and saw for myself.

Remember the other day when they caught three inmates with shanks? Prison made weapons?

The very next day maintenance went out and put stakes in all of the tomato plants in the gardens all over the camp.

At best count there are now around a hundred three foot long pointed wooden stakes driven into the ground in different places all over the camp.

So if the camp gets attacked by vampires, we're good.

But if we get attacked by inmates, we're screwed.

Just now I had to sit there for a minute and shake my head. The absurdity of it all just amazes me sometimes.

I work in a prison.

I don't know where the rest of those people think they are working, but it obviously isn't here.

Good grief.

So Tuesday is going to be Clerihew Day, Don't Step On A Bee Day (or in a bidet), Pina Colada Day, Teddy Bears Picnic Day and Pick Blueberries Day.

Bidet.... hee hee hee!

Too Tired To Post 2

And there it is.

Monday is going to be National Sugar Cookie Day.

And that's good enough for me.

Sunday, July 8, 2012

How Absurd

In the past three years since I've been blogging I've written about alot of crazy things that have happened here in good ol' Raccoon City. Everything from homicidal lunatics playing in their own private excretions to the just plain stupid not playing with anything at all.

There have been good days and bad days and some that were just so boring it was all I could do to stay awake for the entire eight hours. And some others that were so exciting that I never even made it in the door and ran hard all night long.

Some of the things I have been forced to do in my job still make me shake my head in wonder at times. Sometimes I think "I'm not getting paid nearly enough for this." while other times make me think "I get to do this and I get paid?!? Whoo Hoo!!!"

But you should have seen Chuck and I chasing a stupid bird around the A/C room in 25 house with brooms this evening.

It had obviously flown in either last night or this afternoon while maintenance was fixing our air conditioning. Miz Slim kept telling me she heard a bird in the building and we finally tracked it down in the A/C machinery room.

Good sized room. About the size of a single car garage with twelve foot ceilings, just chock full of air conditioning equipment and pipes and conduit running everywhere. It was like some sort of "Super Mario" type maze.

And here's this stupid bird flying back and forth trying to find it's way out. I blocked open the front door and Chuck and I grabbed brooms and tried for over half an hour to chase it out of the room.

The stupid thing kept flying up into the pipes and when we would get it near the door it would fly to the back of the room and we would have to start all over again, like some really annoying video game. And both of us kept barking our shins and knees and elbows on the pipes and racks of equipment.

Eventually we lost track of it. It either flew out the door when we weren't looking or we finally managed to scare it to death, one or the other. By that time we were both tired and hot and sweaty and ready to give up the chase anyway.

You would think that an air conditioning equipment room would be air conditioned.

But it sure as heck aint.

Anyway, that was my good deed for the day. And as much effort as it took, I may consider it good enough for the rest of the month. I'm pooped!

Sunday (the day that only about nine bazillion easily offended people read my blog) is going to be
Name Your Poison Day, Math 2.0 Day, SCUD (Savor the Comic, Unplug The Drama) Day and National Chocolate With Almonds Day.

Unplug the freaking drama, already!

Saturday, July 7, 2012

Impeccable Timing

Wouldn't ya know it. I checked the National Weather Service website this morning like I always do.

It said "UnGawdly Freaking Hot with a 20% chance of thunderstorms."

So right after I got out of the shower and got dressed and ready to walk out the door it came down one of those tarantula downpours. Driving wind and heavy rain. Water blowing up underneath the front door. Tree limbs flying around in the wind. The whole nine enchiladas.

I got soaked just walking the six feet from the door to get in the truck. Have to have the windshield wipers on high just to see the road.

Drive seven miles to work and when I get there the place is as dry and arid as the Gobi freaking desert. And a hundred degrees. Step out of the truck in my soaking wet coat and immediately burst into humidity. I felt like I would throw up, pass out and burst into flames.

It hadn't rained a drop there. Figures.

By the time I get to my house I am finally un-dampenated. No longer quite as outwardly moist, anyway. Felt like I'd been slightly basted, though.

Then an hour or so later, just as count clears.... The same storm (I suspect) came around for another pass and hit us hard. Just as soon as we are trying to send out the houses for mainline it romps in. Bang crash pow.

"Hold all movement!!!" It's the freaking apocalypse. And the power goes out.

Aw, snap. Working in a prison when the power goes out is kind of a scary thing. Especially when so many of our locks are electronically controlled. Bad things can happen. Doors that are supposed to be closed can suddenly end up open. And doors that you really want open will stay stubbornly closed until someone can get there with a key.

Right in the middle of the storm the gate across from our house popped open and the wind blew it all the way back against the fence hard. I saw it and put on my rain gear and trotted out to close it.

Soaked again.

And the wind bent something so that you have to lift the gate to get it to lock. With all of my strength I can barely get it high enough to get it locked again. Nice.

And just as soon as I get back inside and strip off my rain gear.....

It quits raining.

Hey! But at least someone had the foresight to turn on the sprinklers out in the garden right before the storm hit.

That was smart thinking. Sheesh.

So Saturday is going to be National Strawberry Sundae Day as well as Father-Daughter Take A Walk Day, Hop A Park Day and Tell The Truth Day.

I hold out my hopes for a strawberry sundae.

Wednesday, July 4, 2012

You Can't Do That!

I've said it for years. One of the stupidest things you can say to a Correctional Officer is "You can't do that!"

That is pretty much guaranteeing that he is going to do it.

Or at least give it the old college try.

The Pshrinks had put one of the wobbleheads down in the Hive on an injected psych med that was supposed to help him calm down and behave himself for awhile. It's what we call "Forced meds", which means he has no choice but to take it.

They do a hearing to determine if an offender needs to have a forced med injection scheduled or not. Pshrinks, caseworkers and at least one judge. If they all agree, the judge signs a court order and this guy is getting a butt full of Haldol or whatever whether he wants it or not.

For the safety and security of the institution and for the well being of the offender himself and society at large.

Sometimes they just cuff up and take it. Sometimes they fight. But they always end up taking their medicine in the end.

Horrible pun there intended.

We had one down in the Hive that was supposed to get a forced med shot and he was resisting. Wouldn't come cuff up for the nurse. Refused.

Since I was on the yard I gave Lt Beez a ride down to the Hive and I tagged along just for kicks. He went to the guys door and told him either he was going to cuff up and take his shot or they were going to send a team down to come in and get him.

He said "You can't just come in here like that, man! This is my own private cell!"

What the......

Hee hee hee hee hee hee hee!

OMFGawd what a freaking idiot!

That statement would pretty much prove for all time and with no uncertainty that he was bona fidely crazy as a pink dumpster in the china cabinet.

No offense to any of you who might actually have a pink dumpster in the china cabinet, of course. Just making an observation.

Anyway, after Lt Beez tried a few more times to make him cooperate, he went off to make the call to put a movement team together.

Walking out behind him I made my best maniacal laugh while he looked back at me with a worried look on his face. I always cackle like that when there is epic tomfoolery afoot.

Unfortunately for the entertainment value, once he looked out and saw five guys dressed in riot gear fixing to come in and clean his clock, he relented and submitted to the shot.

I wasted one of my best maniacal laughs for nothing. Ah, well. There's always the next day.

Things are getting stupid and crazy again. Supposedly they found three shanks on B-side this afternoon and somebody got stuck. That just aint cool.

It's way too hot to be fooling around like that.

Here's the weekend lineup:
Wednesday is going to be National Country Music Day and Tom Sawyer Fence-Painting Day as well as National Barbecued Spareribs Day.

Thursday will be Workaholics Day, Bikini Day and National Apple Turnover Day.

Friday will be National Fried Chicken Day, International Kissing Day and Take Your Favorite Blogger To Lunch Day.

Okay, I may have fibbed there just a little.

Worth a shot...

Monday, July 2, 2012

Just Freaking Do Something!!!

Okay, I got my butt handed to me over last nights post.

Even after the comments. Coupe comes up to me first thing and says "I read you on Sundays. I was a little disappointed."

And at least two other people either came up to me or called and said "Hey! I read your blog on Sundays, too!" And then they called me rude names.

Okay... okay... I admit that I surrendered to a bit of ennui. Some mental constipation. A short bout with Gotnuttintowriteaboutitis. And rather than own up to that, I tried to shift the blame elsewhere.

That backfired. Anyway...

When I started with the department nine years ago I first began at another camp up the road. Let's call it "Silent Hill Correctional Center."

Yeah. Creepy, huh?

The place had only been open a few months and at least 75% of the staff there were almost as new as I was. Most of the supervisors there were newly promoted into their positions to go and help open up this new camp.

And very few of them ever brought a single clue with them when they came to work.

In the eight months I was there we never once managed to lock up a troublemaker out of our house, no matter how hard we tried. They would fiddle-fart around and say "Well, I don't know..." and "No, just write a violation. They might lock him up later."

I was quite depressing. And disheartening. They wouldn't let us do our jobs. We had absolutely no support there at all. They cut us off at the knees and showed the offenders that we had no power at all. And that is a dangerous thing.

If my transfer to Raccoon City hadn't come through, I would have quit. The place was making me nervous.

My first day in Raccoon City I'm out on the yard, just trying to get a feel for the place and this little bitty Lieutenant comes swaggering up to me.

You would have had to met him to really get the feel of the guy. I'm not sure how old he was, but he was the very first officer in this state to wear a duty belt to work with his uniform, if that's any indication. They called him "Two Belts Frank." Anyway...

He swaggers up to me and, speaking through his teeth like a miniature version of Clint Eastwood he says "If any of these little snapsuckers gives you any trouble, lock 'em up and we'll deal with the bullsnap later!"

I just grinned at him and said "Yes, sir! I think I can do that!"

And ya know.... It's just that easy to make a decision.

Just.... Do... Something... And if it's wrong we'll deal with the bullsnap later.

So! Tuesday is going to be Stay Out Of The Sun Day and Compliment Your Mirror Day. As I am going to be on the yard, staying out of the sun is going to be problematic. And my mirror hates me with a passion. I'm just saying...

Oops. It;s also going to be National Chocolate Wafer Day and Eat Beans Day.

Downwind, boy!

Not Really In The Mood

Not really in the mood to post anything substantial tonight.

Not even in the mood to find a picture.

Nobody reads this thing on Sundays anyway.

Monday is going to be Visitation Of The Virgin Mary Day. I hope she calls first. The house is a mess. It's also going to be National Anisette Day.

I hope she likes licorice... Or Nyquil...

Sunday, July 1, 2012

A Moment Of Silliness

I had a choice today of writing about two different things. One serious and one silly.

I went with the silliness. Of course.

As it was so stiflingly hot today we spent alot of time inside the house. Especially in my office, where the a/c worked good and I had a fan going. It was almost chilly in there.

Tilt and I were sitting on opposite sides of my desk and he was drinking from a plastic water bottle. He'd actually made pink lemonade in a blue bottle which turned it a sort of puce or lilac color. I remarked as how it made him appear a tad less than manly, but he took no notice of my remarks, as usual.

He'd laid the cap for his bottle down on the desk. I thought I would flip it over and spin it across the desk into his lap. As I was the captain of the Harvard cap spinning team of '06, I figured this would be no problem. I was, after all, a consummate professional.

Perhaps I misjudged the humidity. Or neglected to take into account that there was a microwave in the room. Or the sun was in my eyes or something. At any rate, the cap flew in quite the opposite direction I had intended it and ended up all the way across the room, completely out of our reach from where we were sitting.

He demanded I go pick it up. I declared that I would do no such thing. Even if I stretched I couldn't have reached it from my chair.

It was a puzzling conundrum.

We decided on two different courses of action.

Tilt got on the radio and asked Miz Slim to come to the office while I got on the phone to my zone Lieutenant and asked if he had any procedural advice in this matter.

Once I explained the problem to my Lieutenant, he said it probably wasn't dire enough to alert the E-squad, but if we couldn't find a solution soon maybe we should call a yard officer down to assist in the recovery effort.

About the time I finished my conversation with the Lt, Miz Slim showed up and Tilt explained our dilemma to her.

She stood there and looked at us both like we were nuts, then said "Oh my gawd! I'll get it for goodness sakes!" And she picked up the cap and handed it back to Tilt.

And with a final "You two guys are crazy!" she went back to her wing.

Women. They just don't get it sometimes.

So Sunday is going to be Creative Ice Cream Flavor Day and Build A Scarecrow Day as well as Canada Day (Yay!, eh?), Roswell UFO Day and International Chicken Wing Day.

How about chicken wing flavored ice cream?