Sending Out an SOS

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Well, one day I was sick, and that day…lasted for more than a week.

I am happy to report that as of this afternoon I seem to be quite recovered, but here’s the thing:

I want to post every day. I have different ideas for every day of the week. For the most part, I’m so down to do this on my own but it would be WONDERFUL to have someone on my team who could take over for a day (or days) in the even that I am predisposed or ill. Any takers? Hit me up via e-mail.

More normal MM posts and info on “Why Miller Turned Killer” in my next post.

Erica out.

Taboo Tuesdays – Masturbation Mortification

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Author: Erica
It’s weird what bodily functions are polite to talk about because every human being eats and goes to the bathroom and has sex, but of those three, only eating is acceptable to talk about in polite society. And if you talk about the other two while someone is eating, they’ll reprimand you. They’ll be like, “hey, we’re eating here.” That never works the other way around. No one’s ever like, “For our specials tonight, we have tortellini with marinara sauce,” and you’re like, “Do you mind? I am trying to masturbate.”

I heard this bit on “The Mulaney” show the other night (love John Mulaney, but I’m sad to say that it’s a pretty terrible show. Just sayin’) and it made me think of a story that Asher wrote to me in a letter back in July that we still laugh about frequently. It has to do with one of his childhood masturbation sessions.

Of course, you can act like you don’t want to hear this story because it’s wrong or impolite, but the truth is that you do want to hear it because if you were ever a sexually curious or horny adolescent (which you WERE!!), you have an embarrassing masturbation story of your own. There’s no way you don’t so just stop lying to yourself. I promise that reading what happened to Asher as a pre-teen will make you feel better about yourself.

These are Asher’s words, taken directly from his letter that I had to rifle through my closet for about 20 minutes in order to find, so you should be grateful to be able to read it, dammit!

Ahem:

“I used to grind-urbate stuff in the closet. Pillows, sleeping bags, my hand, whatever was handy. I got caught once by my mom…who was giving my aunt and uncle a tour of the house…(No, seriously. This happened). I had just enough time to sit up and cover my shit with the sleeping bag I was fucking at the time. They didn’t see dick, but it was obvious I was naked cause my legs were sticking out the sides. (You’re laughing your ass off right now, aren’t you? Me too. Back then I was MORTIFIED though). My mom was like, “Oh. Uh, what are you doing, son?” I was like, “…Rafting.” (Well, it kinda looked like I was on a raft!) (Or like I was trying to wear the sleeping bag like a huge diaper.) She was like, “Rafting?!” I was like, “RAFTING!!! JUST…GO AWAY!” And my aunt and uncle were looking in over her shoulder…but they weren’t admiring the walk-in closet, I assure you.”

I don’t even care how many times I’ve heard this story – it still kills me every single time. (Don’t worry, I totally had permission to share this!)

So there you have it, ladies and gents. Convicted felons have embarrassing masturbation stories just like the rest of us! I defy you to go relive the painful memory of your own without thinking of this one from now on and realizing that your childhood really wasn’t THAT humiliating after all. And if this one didn’t top yours off…I demand that you share. You’ll feel better – I promise.

Thoughts on War Machine

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Author: Erica (Photo Credit: TMZ.com)

Well, this happened:

War Machine
Attempts Suicide by Hanging in Jail

(Read the full TMZ exclusive here)

 

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For those not following the story, “War Machine” may very well get life in prison for what he did to Christy Mack – and he should, without a doubt, be punished for the physical and emotional trauma he inflicted. In previous interviews, WM said he would try to off himself if his career were ruined. He’s shown time and time again that he’s got serious anger issues and is mentally unstable…

When young people end up going on shooting rampages or seemingly “nice”, “normal” citizens suddenly snap and commit a crime, you’ll always find online spectators leaving comments like, “Where were their parents? How did no one notice the warning signs?”

Well, where were WM’s friends, family, managers, publicists? It was CLEAR that he had issues, right? The answer is that people just don’t really want to see mental health issues or instability in their loved ones. And often, those suffering do everything they can to play it off because they don’t want it to be seen. And then…disaster. Total meltdown. And that’s exactly what happened with my good buddy Asher. In his case, though, it wasn’t an anger management problem – it was manic depressive disorder. Left largely untreated and ignored (by himself, included), perfect storm conditions were created for a tragedy that can never be undone.

Part of me has to wonder if WM’s built up anger and instability have left him feeling as out of control as Asher did when he was initially imprisoned. Completely spun out. Lost inside his own head. Asher, too, was placed on suicide watch. Again, from behind screens, people spew out their hateful comments about how the COs should have let him kill himself and how no one cares…maybe that’s why people like WM and Asher have these suicidal thoughts to begin with – a total lack of societal concern for treating the root cause of personality disorders and mental illness BEFORE it spirals out of control. A lack of concern for what it’s really like to live in the American prison system. A lack of forgiveness. Can you imagine KNOWING that you lost control and KNOWING that you’ve let down every single person that you love, and that there’s nothing that you can really do to ever fix it?

All I ask is that we all work to think with hearts and minds full of empathy rather than judgement and hatred.

You’ve Got Time

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Author: Erica

I really like to sing to myself. Songs are constantly popping into my head, and this evening as I was making myself a snack I started rocking out to the “Orange is the New Black” theme song. I immediately thought of Asher when I got to this line:

“Taking steps is easy; standing still is hard.”

I think that’s probably the hardest thing for us “free” folks to understand about what it’s like for those behind bars. Even when we think we aren’t doing a whole lot to reach our goals or contribute to society or WHATEVER it is that we value, we’re all in perpetual motion. We’re all going about our daily lives with the freedom to control what gets done and what doesn’t get done, where we go, what we do, and when. This is not the case with our felonious friends.

Time is something that comes up a lot in my conversations with Asher. It’s something that really frustrates him. Our first run-in with time came when he tried to send me a new and revised version of his book “Why Miller Turned Killer” which will soon be available for free in e-book format. See future posts for more info!). Upon attempting to mail it to me, it was held by administration for nearly a month for “review”. Despite the fact that it has been ruled that writing and sharing literature falls under ‘freedom of speech’ and is therefore a prisoner’s constitutional right, the staff at the pen really wanted to do everything they could to find a reason not to send it. After all, Asher had been thrown in the hole once for publishing the book under the pretense of “conducting business”. This was because the book was being managed on a website that required a minimum sale of 99 cents per copy (hence why the new version will be free). It got to the point where I was even telephoned by two investigators at the prison to talk to me about the book. FINALLY they decided to let it go and I got the pages between my greedy little paws.

Then there are the photos. Out here in the “real world”, digital pictures can be printed nearly instantaneously. In fact, one-hour photo has been widely replaced by 30-minute photo. In prison, getting a digital photo printed can take more than a month. This is very aggravating to inmates, as they are charged for the pictures as soon as they are taken. Funds come out, but they get nothing in return for weeks on end. To prison staff, a picture may not be that significant, but to an inmate, it’s their only way of showing family and friends how they are doing. This has happened to Asher on several occasions, and he is currently waiting on a picture that was taken of him on a bicycle from nearly 5 weeks ago.

Of course, there’s the feeling of helplessness. As Asher’s final stages of his appeals close in (at the federal level), there’s very little that he can do for himself in order to find representation that will actually take care of him and to get everything filed on time. Only outgoing calls can be made in a very specific window of time. Phone call times are limited. Mail is slow. Internet access is non-existent. It’s hard to push forward and take the necessary steps when you’re so restricted. He counts on his loved ones to help him out, but even then, he often feels stuck.

Asher constantly expresses his gratitude for my help, but I often have to remind him that he’s made a significant impact in my life, too. His inability to move forward in the ways that he would like pushes me to move even further forward – not only in my efforts to give him a hand, but in my efforts to be my highest self. As mentioned in an earlier post, I went through some really rough times earlier this year. Despite the fact that I was a free woman, I let myself get “stuck”. I stopped moving. My friendship with Asher has made me realize that I really don’t have the right to get stuck. None of us do. We all have to keep plugging away, living, and improving for ourselves and for the people that we love.

So my challenge to you is to go out each day and take steps, no matter how large or small. Embrace the power of forward motion.