4. Something Bitter Arises

One humanoid escapee
One android on the run
Seeking freedom beneath
A lonely desert sun
Trying to change its program
Trying to change the mode
Crack the code
Images conflicting
Into data overload
1-0-0-1-0-0-1  S.O.S.
1-0-0-1-0-0-1  in distress
Neil Peart, RUSH: The Body Electric

[06-18-97]

I am at once both doctor and patient.

diagnosis: psychosis

prescription:
(1) “bed rest”   
(2) a few sleeping pills  
(3)  smoke plenty of cannabis sativa   
(4) After getting some sleep, try writing to see if  handwriting has returned to normal
Beads of sweat drip down my head. 

I was out cruising up and down Main Street, Freehold, in my 1984 VW Jetta with Black Sabbath cranked full blast.  I alienate myself from many. 
Bring about a revolutionary situation. 

[06-19-97]
I went to Great Adventure alone after guzzling a couple 16 oz. Grolsch’s.  Most people were in pairs, families, cliques, or groups.  What did Jeff Tate from Queensryche mean, at the concert at the Garden State Arts Center, when he said that to be alone, to travel solo, is a “tip off” to the authorities that “this one is different than the rest”?  I am one who is different.  At the Queensryche concert, while tripping on mushrooms and dancing barefoot on the hill, I had this sense of being a distinctive presence.
I am trying to speak less at work.  These days, it is best if I don’t even try to explain how I feel.  All I see are skeletons.  In the still of the night, I need not be cuddled next to a female in order to be one with the darkness.  We all face the Underworld Beneath Our Skin alone, whether we are with someone or not.

[06-21-97]
The buddha arrived by 14:00, but it was too late.  I had alcohol poisoning real bad by 16:45.  It lasted until 20:00!  I had to go under hot and cold water.  I was on my knees with my head to the floor, air blowing out my rear, and screaming in agony.  I had once again been poisoned on an empty stomach by alcohol.  I had been drinking beer all day while beating on my drums outside on the porch.  It was over 90 degrees Fahrenheit today, which helped to dehydrate me.

[06-27-97]
By midnight I was counting out 200 pennies for a pack of smokes.  By 02:00 I was setting up a stereo over in the office of the maintenance shop. By noon the next day I had set up a $50 skillet in the shop lunch room.  It goes hand in hand with the stereo and the “Mikey’s Desk” set up.

How many other drunken philosophers just took a territorial piss out in front of their local Barnes and Noble, and then voiced the opinion that it is better to read a few quality books over and over again than to read one piece of crap after another?

Some Japanese words:
aisha – manipulating an overly sympathetic or soft hearted person
chi (ki) – “breath”, life force, energy
dosha – taking advantage of a person’s bad temper
kuji-kuri – ninja method of focusing ki, using finger movements
kuromaku – “black curtain”; the power behind the throne
neko – cat, ninja, “invisible person”
ninjo – compassion
ninjutso – “the art of invisibility”, training in stealth, climbing, taijutsu (unarmed combat), and weapon skills
oyabun – godfather, “parent role”
sarariman – “salary man”, employee
sumimasen – so sorry
yakuza – criminal underworld

I learn from Schopenhauer, The Pessimist’s Handbook, On Human Nature:  It is not wise to consider a person’s bad will, or narrow understanding, as this may lead to hating this person.  Instead, fix your attention on his/her sufferings, needs, anxieties, and pains, for this bring forth compassion.

[07-04-97]
On my own time, I cut some old horse trails I had discovered across from Owl Haven on rt. 522.  I worked all day on these trails, on my own time, because these trails are not considered a priority to the administration.  They are too concerned with having me prepare for the Reenactment of the Revolutionary War.  It’s the usual politics, like how we could not get money for some gravel to fill huge holes in the trails, and then the State turns around and pays a million dollars to clear a forest that took over 40 years to grow, a place inhabited by wild life, where many people discovered a secret world in which to escape for a few hours. The administrators refer to these trees as overgrown weeds.  The natives had no such concept.  They say the white man uses the word weed to describe any plant that is in his way.  

I had a few beers after working on the trails, and with all the traffic, I decided to walk to the racetrack to watch the fire works, and on my way home, while cutting through a cul-de-sac, I ran into a dead end where there was once an opening.  I had not had to cut through this spot for years, so I was baffled to find myself lost.  While finding my way out of this cul-de-sac, I noticed headlights coming my way.  I moved aside for a pick up truck to pass by, but a guy jumped out claiming to be an off duty cop.

He grabbed me, and I kicked him in the chest as he was going through my pockets.  Then his buddy got out of the truck, and they both struggled to subdue me.  I got very loud, wanting to see a badge.  I had a joint in my cigarette pack, and Mr. Cop wanted to search my pockets as there had recently been a lot of things stolen from this neighborhood.  I indignantly refused to let him search my pockets.

Eventually, a woman came outside; she was on the phone with the police.  I recognized her.  After all, this cul-de-sac was very close to the woods and fields of my childhood, and I used to ride motorcycles with her sons when we were teens.  When I explained to her who I was, she remembered me.  She verified my identity.  The asshole would not let me walk away on foot, but insisted he drive me home to make sure I was not lying.  I was tired and angry, so I took the ride.

While explaining where I lived, on State property, he asked a very stupid question.  Maybe he was a cop after all.  He asked me if the State knew I was living out there.  What a jackass!  When he stopped the truck, he asked me for my social security number.  I lost my mind.  I screamed, “Fuck you,”  as I slammed the door of his precious pick up truck as hard as I could.

I went into a rage, seeing red, all the while screaming, “Get the fuck out of here!  I am so sick of you cops thinking you own this town, thinking you can spot and hunt deer out here! I am building gates, getting ready to block vulnerable spots with fence.  Just 2 weeks ago, while I was walking through Beltaire, where I happened to be raised, which is now State Park property, a cop harassed me, giving me a lift home just like this.  I had more business walking out there than he had driving there.  I tell you, I am so tired of you police!  Just get the fuck out of here so I can lock the damn gate!”

[07-05-97]
I set up the tent in the front yard for my July 7th to 13th vacation.  I will leave it up until I leave for C.R.O.W. Hill on the 24th.  Loud music is blasting from “the H Residence.”    I am Crazy Ghost!   Shall I place my staff in the center of a circle with a 10 ft. radius and squat?

[07-09-97]
No more peace.  While sleeping in the tent, I was awakened by the sound of gun shots.  It must have been the farmers that have permission to hunt out here, but I did not care.  I drove the old 1974 Ford Dump truck down to the gate, locked the gate, and proceeded to chase the farmers off the Rez.  This place was, for the moment, not what it appeared to be.  For the moment, this had become the Hentrich Reservation for a Tribe of One.  I parked the dump truck in the middle of a field and screamed the ravings of a lunatic into the night.

Today was worse than last night.  When I went over to shoot the shit with the old 75 year old parasite in the shop, I discovered my desk and stereo were broken down.  I was carrying half a watermelon which I intended to share with this miserable bastard.  He can really be a kind old man at times.  He has given me electric blankets, pots and pans, rugs, et cetera.  I remember asking the old fuck if I could set up a desk in the office, and he replied, “Mike, do whatever you want.”

I was so pissed that I just let go of the watermelon, letting it smash onto the floor.  I took a long walk into the woods to smoke some cannabis, which I thought would calm my nerves.  When I got back to the shop, Wile E. Coyote was in there playing the big shot general.  Old Fuck was whining about how I was trying to take over the shop, how I was disruptive.  The old man’s face was red, and spit was flying from his blabbering lips.
I was asking him to calm down, reminding him that I got his permission first.  It struck me odd how I would have to get permission from someone who comes in 2 days a week, who hasn’t sat on a tractor in 12 years, when I was the one pulling the cart.  Just then, Wily interjects, “Mike, you are off today, right?”

Looking him dead in the eye, “Yes.”

“Good, then why don’t you just stay out of the shop”, he ordered.  There was no inflection in his voice.  He was not asking me a question, but simply waving his prick, asserting his administrative authority.

My response was not to bleep, yes sir, like a sheep.

Continuing to look him dead in the eye, with escalating enmity, I barked, “This is our office, right?  Why don’t you get out!”

My hands began to shake the way they do when one gets the feeling a phone call could be made that would soon have one struggling with those damn dirty apes, so I began removing from the shop my stereo, my skillet, my coffee pot, et cetera.

Only I guide my inner self.  These blockheads in authority underestimate my inner powers.  My intellect and my philosophy are invisible realities that cannot be “taken away”.  They may very well be able to remove my physical body from their park, but they cannot remove my presence of mind.

I drummed on the porch like a medicine man in rebellion on a reservation.  The savage became manifest.  It is a dangerous thing to lose all fear.

[07-10-97]
This is a bit thick.  With Wiley over by the shop, watching to make sure the superintendent was advising the dissenter of the ruling concerning this confrontation with authority, the superintendent told me I had been suspended with pay until I was straightened out with medication.  I am not permitted in the shop until I am “cool”.

[07-12-97]
The tension mounts.  I feel like a wild animal that has been cornered.  I am canceling all plans to purchase a bass guitar.  The orders are that I am to be evaluated at the Princeton House by a psychiatrist.  They had a “Mikey Meeting” up at the Region Office.  Word has it that no one had anything negative to say about me, except that my moods were irregular, my reactions unpredictable.

I do not believe in this disease, manic-depression; but, it looks as though my taking medication will be mandatory.  I guess I could use a bit of calming down.  Still, I will not have my identity deadened, dulled, and normalized.


To Make a Long Story Short

I was scheduled for a psychiatric evaluation for 07-15, but on the way home from a bar at 17:15 on 07-14, I was screaming out my car window. Before I made it home, I was arrested for “eluding”.

What set me off that day, I do not know; but, for some reason I was screaming out the window while driving down South, Main, and Throckmorton Streets.  The police gave me a DWI ticket, a reckless driving ticket, and a leaving the scene of an accident ticket.  It is said that a woman called in my plates as having been the car that hit her car in a parking lot.  The ranger at the park told me that, upon inspection of my vehicle, there was not a scratch, so I suspect that someone heard me mouthing off and decided it must have been me who scratched their vehicle. I was targeted and set up!

What put me in jail were the eluding and resisting arrest charges.  I honestly did not see the cops until I was closing the gate at Central Supply, “my” driveway.  Besides, the first of three cars was unmarked with its little hazards on.

As I was locking the gate, with my hands shaking, I was yelling to the police, who were getting out of their vehicles in a hurry, heading toward me, “I live here!  This is where I live!”

Needless to say, I was confused.  How was I to know I had been reported as leaving the scene of an accident?  I truly believed they were hosing me down with pepper mace because I was screaming out my window. For all I know, this could have been a set up.
Macing me down did not subdue me.  I had a violent reaction to this.  I was not expecting those blasts of chemical mace, and my response was to immediately head for my VW, jump in, step on the clutch, and put it in first gear.  As I was releasing the emergency brake and clutch, the police practically ripped the door off its hinges in order to grab this maniac who, honestly, was only trying to get home. 

I think that when I fled into my vehicle, after knowing the police were obviously trying to apprehend me, I did resist arrest. Well …

I cannot be too hard on myself.  I don’t like to be maced, and I have this aversion to being hunted down.  What if I had made it home a good minute before they started their man hunt?  Would they consider it eluding? Fuck no!  I had no idea they were even coming after me.  They would have their fabricated leaving the scene of an accident, but they would not have been able to set up the eluding trap.

Eluding was a fourth degree crime that got switched to a second-degree crime by governor White-man.  She meant this law to be used against people involved in high-speed chases that ran through different towns.  I was driving home at 45 mph.  All I know is that I was in the county jail for the first time in 10 years, and that I was facing 10 years in prison for trying to get down my driveway so as to lock my crazy ass in the house!


The Cuckoo’s Nest

[07-17-97]
I am in the psychiatric wing in the Monmouth County Correctional Institution.  I qualify because of my being diagnosed with a manic-depressive disorder, and it is mandatory that I go on lithium.  I called the superintendent at the park, and he assures me I still have a job.  I was still manic when I talked to him.

Returning to the Tark House is all I can think about.   The new library, although it is nothing to write home about, is a great improvement from what they had 10 years ago when I was in “the old jail”.  I have a Calculus text book, Huxley’s The Perennial Philosophy, and Morris’ The Naked Ape.

[07-18-97]
At 05:00 they wake us up for medication, then we are back in the cell until breakfast at 06:30, after which we are back in the cell until 09:00.  From 09:00 to 15:00 we are allowed out of our cells – lunch is at 11:30.  Each tray is worth 40 cents, and each jailbird is allotted only 2000 calories per day, mostly carbohydrates.  We are allowed out of our cells when our last meal of the day arrives, usually by 16:30.  At 22:00 we get medication again, and by 23:00 we are locked back in our cells.  When we are locked in our cells, this is called “lock down”.  At any time, the correctional officer can call for a lock down.

[07-20-97]
I was able to convince JM to move out of 206 into 306 with his buddy, JN, thereby freeing the bottom bunk for RG, a retired Newark homicide detective who was awarded the congressional medal of honor for heroic performances in the Vietnam war.  What’s he doing here?  He broke his Jewish wife’s restraining order.

“Bible J” (JM) was really getting on my nerves with all his speaking in tongues, his memorization and recitation of the Book of Revelations, and his constantly asking me if I believed Jesus Christ died on the cross for my sins.

I face the ethical problem of whether or not to go into the details of the crimes committed by those I will be mentioning.  In most cases, I will refrain from doing so.  Also, although there are some characters in here, and even though RG and I did intensive character analysis on more than 30 of the souls in our wing, with all analysis written down in the pages before me, I am bound to respect the privacy of these men.  I use initials to protect their identity, and I leave out many observations about the nature of their crimes out of respect.

John Steinbeck could have had a field day using some of these characters in a work of fiction, but this is not a work of fiction.  Fictional characters may be inspired by real life individuals, and I will save my jail writings for a rainy day, if I am up to writing fiction, and I am in need of characters.  For now, I am taking excerpts from the diaries of a cipher, and I am more concerned with the inner condition of the mind that wrote the notes.  I had many laughs with RG while we were working on these character analyses, but it was TP, “the tonsorial artist”, who would reprimand us, telling us that it was not right for us to make up nicknames for people, to take pleasure in making fun of others.
Normally I would not take heed of the warnings of a Born Again Christian, but TP was right.  There is something unethical about disrespecting another by making a joke out of their misfortunes and their personal idiosyncrasies.  I will continue to focus on the inner life, and resist introducing any characters.

My time will be easier to endure with RG than it was with JM.  As for RG, he was relieved to get out of cell 204.  He described his cellie as being “a great deal of dead brain tissue, mentally deficient in all respects”.  CM had a great big heart, and he was physically gigantic.  He always asked what day it was, he was aggressive when confronted, and one could not help but have compassion for him.  RG said he knew he had run out of compassion for CM when he saw he was pissing off the top bunk into his sneakers.  Needless to say, RG and I are glad to have gotten rid of our problem cellies.  It is true that Hell is other people.

The plan to not hand out tobacco to grubs is working well.  I am now receiving a full meal tray for a couple hand rolled cigarettes.  I also get one half-pint of milk for one “rollie”.  It is wise to save the soup from lunch as we go 14 hours without food between dinner and breakfast.

[07-23-97]
I tore up about twenty pages of writings and flushed them down the toilet as suggested by RG.  He was afraid that during a cell search, my notes would be found and turned over to the prosecutor as State evidence of my antisocial nature, my subversive thoughts.  I have to realize that I am in jail, and not in the privacy of my own home.  From now on, I will try to keep from writing anything that might be viewed as “insane”.  People in positions of authority may lack the intelligence to understand my deeper reflections.

I hung up on the park superintendent today.  He tells me there is a good chance my belongings will have to be moved out of the Tark House when I am no longer collecting a check, which will be in 2 weeks!  I was furious.  Everything is out of my hands.  I am in no position to stop anyone from doing whatever the hell they want to do.  I am grateful to my mother for having taken all 50 of my personal notebooks out of the Tark House only 2 days after I was thrown in jail.  I would not put it passed Wile E. Coyote and the Regional Chief Ranger to have my boss go snooping around the house for signs of illegal drug use.  They know I write, and some of my notebooks are out in the open, some right on the shelves with my books.  I was in the middle of reviewing old material as I was on vacation.  I was very concerned about my notebooks being exposed.  What would one do without a mother?

[07-25-97]
Just as “my being able to read, write, and sleep my days away while in jail is a long awaited vacation from the daily grind” is to be kept a sacred secret in my heart, not to be shared with my mother or my employer, so too is each book on the little shelf in my cell secretly feeding my inner realm.

“I saw that, if there was a wall of stone between me and my townsmen, there was a still more difficult one to climb or break through before they could get to be as free as I was. I did nor for a moment feel confined, and the walls seemed a great waste of stone and mortar. I felt as if I alone of all my townsmen had paid my tax. They plainly did not know how to treat me, but behaved like persons who are underbred. In every threat and in every compliment there was a blunder; for they thought that my chief desire was to stand the other side of that stone wall. I could not but smile to see how industriously they locked the door on my meditations, which followed them out again without let or hindrance, and they were really all that was dangerous. As they could not reach me, they had resolved to punish my body; just as boys, if they cannot come at some person against whom they have a spite, will abuse his dog. I saw that the State was half-witted, that it was timid as a lone woman with her silver spoons, and that it did not know its friends from its foes, and I lost all my remaining respect for it, and pitied it.”

“Thus the state never intentionally confronts a man’s sense, intellectual or moral, but only his body, his senses. It is not armed with superior with or honesty, but with superior physical strength. I was not born to be forced. I will breathe after my own fashion. Let us see who is the strongest. What force has a multitude? They only can force me who obey a higher law than I. They force me to become like themselves. I do not hear of men being forced to live this way or that by masses of men. What sort of life were that to live?” – from Civil Disobedience by Henry David Thoreau

Reading Dr. Faustus in the middle of the night is like being visited by those devils themselves!  I am much like Faustus in that I love philosophy – physics is for petty minds.  Kurt Vonnegut’s Hocus Pocus inspires me to see myself as a potential Socialist leader (who is merely a “groundskeeper”) capable of confronting the Ruling Class in a big way.

Mornings are great for doing Calculus exercises and exploring Fuzzy Logic, and the time for reading philosophy is after dinner.  The time for reading a novel for enjoyment is after lunch.  I have gotten a feel for my moods, and how my moods change with each phase of the day.  While others play ping pong, watch TV, lift weights, or discuss their legal problems, I hole up in my cell to scribble, to read, to be the thinker that I am.  I am not the only one who is in his own little world.  There are some very talented artists in here.

The strangest thing about this situation is that I am only concerned with not losing my job with the State Park Service, as well as getting back into the Tark House as soon as possible.  If it were not for the fear of losing my employee status and residence at Monmouth Battlefield, I would be as calm as a monk in a monastery.  I have that peculiar mind-set that allows me to treat jail life as a religious retreat away from the sin of the outside world.  I feel great compassion for my inner being.  My being is calm as I have been forced to momentarily detach from my worldly possessions.

I have to accept my situation or else be tortured by frustration.  The things I can influence have to do with my semantic reactions to my environment.  That I can appreciate this “time out” in my life is a paradox.

[07-28-97]
I have a splitting headache; and, thanks to governor White-man, I would have to pay $5.00 for a visit to the medical unit, and $3.00 for aspirin.  Aspirins go for 60 cents per two on the commissary which comes once a week.  I am sorry, so sorry, for the future New Jersian inmates of this human zoo.

What about the Ruling Class?  Will their offspring ever be held prisoner by the State?  If I am king, they will be.  I remember the governor kissing the Manalapan voters’ asses at the park on “Manalapan Day”. 

[07-29-97]
I yielded to the pain last night, and went down to medical before lock down.  The nurse was kind.  She did not charge my account $5.00 as I promised her I had  aspirin on order with commissary.

I have the impression that I will be able to adjust to anything; therefore, I refuse to become upset.  There were many benefits to living in the Tark House:  free utilities, low rent, living close to work, being out in the middle of fields and woods, having access to that panoramic view – my own personal planetarium.  There is also a downside:  the house is too big to keep tidy; I am trapped at work; there are memories of Sherry and the dogs; and, I am basically a sitting duck for packs of spooked out drug-crazed lunatics.
My cousin, Eric, is lending me $2000.  He wants me to bail myself out, but because I will eventually have to go to court to face the music, I have decided to use the money to retain a lawyer.  I tried to get released on my own recognizance into a rehab, but my health insurance will not pay for the rehab I had in mind.  I will have to do some research.

[08-03-97]
I have gained an insight while reading Huxley’s The Perennial Philosophy.  The current brand of Christianity is obsessed with time, concerned with the historical past, and preserving the status-quo.  All religions’ true power exists in the human heart.  When Christians, Jews, and Muslims focus on historical “facts”, they are missing the point.

[08-09-97]
I am perplexed.  If I were a young man in Germany in the 1940’s, would I bring shame to my family?  I have always favored the underdog.  Would I have been killed for not taking part in the slaughter?  I will not worry about people branding me an anti-Semite.  Perhaps I am a Socialist; I have sympathy for the struggles of the poor; I do not recognize the authority of the god of Israel; but I am not a neo-Nazi.

My only weapon is my pen, which now manifests as a word processor.  I am a philosopher, a free thinker, not a robot-soldier to be manipulated by a Fascist regime.   My outbursts were the result of my blaming the over-development of my hometown on a specific people that I sense come out of the city, only to bring the city with them.  I cannot prevent myself from being who I am, and I certainly will not apologize for harboring malevolence.  What’s done is done.

I will not apologize for commending Jung for his rebelling against the dogmatized psychology of Freud.   I have a tendency to favor the wide-open country over the city.  I have the tendency, an inclination, a natural disposition to philosophize.  I have an aversion to the nefarious stratagems of the capitalist, the banker, and the lobbyist.

[08-11-97]
I have been applying my mental powers in experiencing being-in-the-world in an amusing manner. What I do is this:  I picture my thoughts as chemical processes, imagining the electrical impulses of the chemical reactions taking place.  I see the nerve endings throughout the organism, the veins and sinews, the heart pumping blood through the vessels, the tubes, all those tubes, one-big-tube-as-a-whole, the stomach breaking up the food, the skeleton giving form to the machine made of puss, blood, water, vile, et cetera.

What is worth reading? 
What is worth writing? 
Do all poems rhyme? 
What is “space”, what is “time”? 
“I” is a word draped in confusion. 
The thing that breathes is an illusion. 
So complicated it all seems to be. 
The voice within pleads, “Please set me free!”

[08-24-97]
A great peace comes over me.  The park superintendent assures me I will still have a job and a place to live when I am released from captivity.  I did cherish my employment with Monmouth Battlefield as I love to be outdoors, and living out there “in the woods” was great for a hermit such as myself.

[08-25-97]
The guards searched our cells today; when they got to my cell, they told me I had “too many books”.   They said the limit was 4 books, and I had 11 books.  I told them I was scheduled to go to the library the next day, and that I would get rid of the excess contraband then.  I will keep one text book at a time.  I will return the Rhetoric text, the Calculus text, the Fuzzy Logic text, but I will keep the Electronics/Electricity text.

[08-28-97]
RG was released at 10:00.  It is good that, as a retired cop, he saw the zoo as a caged animal instead of as a zoo-keeper.  He confessed to me that he would not have locked up half the people he did if he knew what he knows now.

[08-29-97]
Mom walked over to the jail in the rain to give me some addresses to substance abuse rehabs, holding the paper to the glass during a visit.  She walked over because her Volkswagen was being repaired by Gunther Weber, a mechanic from Germany who only works on Volkswagens.  He is an honest man, an authentic master-mechanic.  I know “honest mechanic” is like “army intelligence” – oxymorons, the words just don’t sound right side by side.  When one finds an honest mechanic, one returns to that mechanic for years to come.  These days, with health maintenance organizations, one rarely even has a doctor they will return to “for years to come”.

Now, back to the main problem: Is there a reason to be born? 

No, I don’t think there is any particular reason to be born.  Life needs no reason; one simply is. 

Is there a reason to be arrested and thrown in jail for “resisting arrest”? 
You are under arrest for resisting arrest. 
Huh? 

What was I to be arrested for originally, closing the gate on a State Park road leading to my house?  They assume an awful lot when, in the police report, they accuse me of eluding them.  In order to elude, I would’ve had to have been aware of them chasing me, which I was not.  Of course, they were able to get an indictment just on their fabricated reports.  I evidently obstructed and endangered them when I was closing the gate before they even turned down the road.

In the police report, they make it sound as if the unmarked car was directly behind me, that I was actually pointing at them while I was shouting.  What’s in it for them?  Is it that important to them to remove me from public service so that the gate to the Forbidden Zone stays open at night, all night, every night, so that Patrolman C____’s father can hunt out there, so that the Manalapan police can spot deer out there at night, all night, every night?  What was in it for them that they had to follow me home and set me up for an eluding charge?

I am not especially fond of being maced, and this is when I did, in fact, struggle to flee.    I had this peculiar reaction to the burning, asphyxiating effects – I wanted to get the fuck away from that spray as fast as I could.  Should I have stood still, opened my mouth, held my eyes open so they could get a clear shot?  Planet of the damn dirty apes with their shit eating grins.

“It’s a madhouse!   A  MADHOUSE!”

“Extraordinary crises release them and they show by wild violent energy how superficial is the control of routine.  The saying that civilization is only skin deep, that a savage persists beneath the clothes of a civilized man, is the common acknowledgment of this fact.” – John Dewey

One of the things I used to write about when I was in this jail ten years ago was the “reptilian brain”.  This is the savage, the animal, that persists beneath the clothes, whether it be the black robes of judges, priests, and Rabbis, the blue uniforms of those paid to curb the natural tendencies of the masses, or the basic suit.  Those in positions of authority are no less animal, no less savage.

Jesus, look at the Nazis. McDonaldized Mass-Murder, Incorporated. They are a perfect example of civilized (efficient) barbarism!  In an orderly fashion, with log-books and labels, march the cold-blooded reptilian brains.  This is nothing new.  Dewey is talking about someone working for the State, the Company, the Slave Patrol (prison guards, security guards, police, soldiers, Blackwater Assassins, etc), the Mental Healthcare Industry, or even, sorry to say, the Postal Service or a Parks Department – a civil servant thankful to have a “secure job” no matter how abused they are by the System.  The security, the routine, is superficial.  At any given moment, on any given day, one may suddenly no longer be a sleepwalking zombie, but a wild organism on a planet in the cosmos, a Thing-in-Itself.

This entire jail is a stronghold designed to trap our animal-bodies.  The Keepers can subdue the psyche, the personality, with psychotropic drugs, mood stabilizers, and solitary confinement, but the Thingly Presence is no longer merely controlled by routine.  Now, the Thing is controlled by being physically detained.  A confrontation with the Law of the Land gives one an indisputable, first hand understanding of where the Law of the Land is coming from.  The system communicates its Law in a completely physical manner.

The little criminals are detained, while the Monster Criminals are running the planet.  The Law of the Land becomes whatever the fuck the wealthy want to do when they wake up in the morning.

[COUGH! CHOKE]

[09-02-97]
What causes someone to resent authority?  What does it mean to be anti-Establishment?  Why are certain individuals prone to rebel?  I wonder if my rejection of the monotheistic concept of one almighty god is a symptom of metaphysical rebellion.  Is there a connection between insubordination and the mythological archetype of the devil, the arch-angel Satan who was cast out of Heaven along with His rebel army of fallen angels?
I will not shy away from the issue just because it involves mythology.  The myths came from somewhere, most likely symbolizing aspects of human nature.  Although I think of myself as a compassionate creature, this is when I am well fed and feeling loved.  When I am hungry, and feeling rejected, then I can be a miserable devil.

Nonsense.  I write nonsense.  The human being is an assortment of tubes.  Drinking a cold glass of water can be a sacred experience for the wretch and saint alike!

[09-04-97]
NOTES FROM GOEBBEL’S DIARIES
May 12, 1943

“The Fuehrer spoke very derogatorily about the arrogance of the higher and lower clergy.  The Christian doctrine of redemption is insane.  Nevertheless there are learned, educated men, occupying high positions in public life, who cling to it with the faith of a child.  Whereas the most learned and wisest scientists struggle for a whole lifetime to study but one of the mysterious laws of nature, a little country priest is in a position to decide this matter on the basis of his religious knowledge.  One can regard such a disgusting performance only with disdain.  Anyone who is firmly rooted in daily life, and who can only faintly imagine the mystic secrets of nature, will naturally be extremely modest about the universe.”

This caught me by surprise.  Most of the book revealed how Goebbel enjoyed his position of power, as the Minister of Propaganda, but this paragraph actually made sense to me.  It struck me.  Even a broken clock is right twice a day. The mystic secrets of nature are truly beyond religious dogma.  At most, religious doctrines speak in allegory about human nature.

[09-05-97]
Great minds may be incarnated in the most humble roles, and although it is rare that a man shall rise out of the caste or class he was born into, it is possible for a lowly toiler to ascend from the streets as a Philosopher-King, as a Messiah-Savior, or even as a Militaristic-Revolutionary.  On the other hand, a Bodhisattva is one who has attained Enlightenment, but who postpones Nirvana in order to help others to attain Enlightenment.  Unlike the peoples’ philosopher-king, savior, or militant leader, the bodhisattva moves discreetly in obscurity.  There are many bodhisattvas at work in the nooks and crannies of everyday life, helping those in their path who have managed to become severely entangled in samsara, the world of illusion. 

[09-07-97]
Last night my new cell-mate had a tantrum down in the TV area, knocking some chairs over in a fit.  The goon squad came in and took him away in handcuffs to the infirmary.  One has to keep one’s cool in here.  Behaving like an infant will get you stripped of all clothing, put in a very small cage, and shot up with thorzine.  The jail industry is like quicksand.  The more one struggles, the faster and deeper one sinks.  I have maintained an extremely calm state of mind.  I get through each day with grace and ease.  I show respect to the officers and fellow jailbirds.  As long as my behavior is stable, no one bothers me about my private thoughts.

At 08:00 the buzzer clicked on the door to my cell.  Usually the doors open at 09:00; and besides, it was only the door to my cell that unlocked.  I thought they might have cut loose my shot-out cellie from the infirmary already.  I was stunned to see RG walking toward the cell.  When RG went back to his house to have his wife sign the divorce papers we had worked on, he was arrested once again for violating the restraining order she had against him.  His detective mind could not keep from tracking down the facts:  his wife was with another man, a much younger man.  RG is very shaken up, but he is playing it cool, taking it in stride.  Although he tries to conceal the pain and brutal frustration of his situation, his eyes reveal that surgit amori aliquid, something bitter arises.  He, only 50 years old, wishes his parents were alive.  The VA can’t help him.  His former police status fires blanks.

[09-16-97]
Being away from the Park only intensifies my memories of it.  I shared my food with the seasonal help, and although the Old Miserable Bastard did not approve of this, it was he who used to share his food with me when I was a seasonal back in 1989.  I would spend my last hundred dollars to feed the crew for 2 weeks when I knew money was a problem.  Why should they have to pay five bucks to some deli for a sandwich?  One dozen eggs, a large can of corned beef hash, some Canadian bacon, and a small loaf of white bread sat well in our bellies at 10:00.

This unity among the troops was discouraged, if not downright prohibited, by the administration.  It was not the administration at MBSP that had a problem with my feeding the crew; in fact, the superintendent at MBSP was also often quite thoughtful and generous.  He would treat his staff, one at a time, to lunch.  He was discreet about it, whereas I was feeding the troops in Sherwood Forest.  Once we started eating, no one could break us up to return to work until we had our fill. 

Wily, the Grinch who stole our 1996 Summer Barbecue, wanted my head chopped off for cooking pancakes (with wild blueberries from around our shop) for the crew on the day our barbecue was supposed to be.  What a browbeating bully!  Mr. Tough Guy always ready, willing, but never able to keep the boys in line if their supervisor couldn’t handle the job.

At least I was able to organize the troops for the Reenactment of 1997.  Old Spring Lake Willie was on vacation for three weeks, Canada was out sick for two weeks, and my boss, Sleepy Head Honcho, was also on vacation for two weeks. In my last three weeks at MBSP, before my vacation/arrest, I had the park looking better than ever with the help of a well-fed crew. The necks had to come back, and together with Wily, accuse me of being disruptive to the maintenance operation over the past few weeks.  They weren’t even at work.  I was the operation!

Upon honest consideration of the situation there, with the sole “Lone” ranger being the only presence, besides the recently retired Chief Ranger, with the intelligence and integrity to give me the recognition I deserved, I am thinking that the park is not worthy of my loyalty.  To say that I am not appreciated is an understatement.  Maybe I will not be returning to my position at Monmouth Battlefield, for whatever reasons.   When I really think of what a sucker I have been, how I have taken such pride in my work, and then I see what Old Fuck and Wily Incorporated are making me out to look like, I believe I was not very happy at all working for the State Park Service.  They just walked all over me.  Talk about jumping from the frying pan into the fire. I escaped from the plantation into a jail cell!

[09-20-97]
The food was so bad tonight that I refused to eat it.  All I ate was the hard roll, and the few stands of lettuce that they call salad.  Out in the yard, the 20’ x 30’ cement cage, there was a downpour.  I was the only inmate that baptized himself in the rain before I was pulled in by the guards.  A Muslim called me “Caveman”. 

[09-22-97]
Dinner was disgusting again, and now I am extremely grouchy because I am hungry.  The combination of being hungry with having someone talk to me while I am sleeping is enough to make me want to kick someone’s teeth down their throat.  My moods change quickly.  I wonder if it is possible to have compassion for others when one is in the throes of hunger.  I am on the verge of going into a rage.  How do people fast?  I am not a saint!  I am a hungry dog.

[09-27-97]
Dad came by to visit this morning.  I relayed this information about the idea my attorney had of entering an insanity plea, and that I face a 10 year sentence.  I am terrified that this would cause me to lose my job, as I work around the public.  Seeing the compassion Dad had for me, I had to do all I could to hold back the tears.  I seem very emotional this morning.  I was not sobbing, but I was really fighting the floodgates.  Knowing that my family, as well as some of the people in the State Park Service, think I am being railroaded helps me to keep from sinking into self-loathing.

Our daily lives are shattered in the blink of an eye.  Everything we cling to can be wiped out in a day.  Will I ever make it back to Central Supply, the Tark House, the park?  Nothing is certain.  While we spend our days worrying about the next ten years, we do not even know whether or not we will draw our next breath.  The State Park Service tried to save me from my inevitable demise by scheduling a psychiatric evaluation for the 15th of July.  I was sucked into another dimension on the 14th.  Breathe in, breathe out.

[09-30-97]
I know I am not insane.  I may have been psychotic on the day of my arrest, and I really can’t say where I was heading with my territorial pissings, but I had been doing much walking in the middle of the night.  I can’t even say that a psychiatric evaluation would have done me any good.  Would I have stopped drinking beer and smoking reefer?  I may have been diminished in capacity at the time of my arrest, but I am not diminished in capacity now.  I am not criminally insane.  Jesus, I was screaming out my car window on my way home from a bar.  I could have just as easily been screaming from the rooftops, “I’m mad as hell, and I’m not gonna take it anymore!”

My idea of criminally insane is going into an office building and emptying rounds of an automatic weapon into the skulls of the zombies.  That’s criminally insane.  I picture someone dangerous to society, much more dangerous than me and my big mouth.  I am fairly harmless, and I think the system could brainwash anyone into thinking they have some kind of mental problem.  Alcoholism is considered a mental problem, even a disease.  I don’t want to get into this right now. I have my own theories, theories better discussed over a stiff drink than through my attempt at literary expression.

I know I am not going to be doing anything more crazy than trying to write a book. 
If some criminally insane people read what I have written, and they form a militia against the Monster Criminals of Planet Earth, then … oh well … that’s The Catcher in the Rye Effect. Conversely, some of my ideas could really piss somebody off.  Suppose a criminally insane individual, with little tolerance for my straightforward manner of expressing my opinions, or even a very sane Monster Criminal who wants to put me in my place, doesn’t like something I have written, and decides to hunt me down? 
Kill me if you will; my philosophy cannot be assassinated.  I don’t know which is more wildly reckless, screaming out my car window while driving down Main Street, or trading in my pen for a word processor.

Today I was told that the judge won’t let me go to the Salvation Army in Trenton because I will have to be prescribed lithium and monitored by a doctor, and there is no psychiatric doctor on the staff.  Hope is a terrible thing.

[10-03-97]
My new axiom will be, “It could get worse before it gets better.”

The chances that I will end up losing my job/house before this is over are fat.  Where will I put my VW?  How will I move my belongings out of the Tark House while I am in jail?  Where would I store my refrigerator, washer, and dryer?  What about my stereo equipment, my computer, my drums, all my books?  What about my beds and sofas, my desks and tables?

What will become of my cat, Forest?  I never particularly cared for cats, but ever since my Golden Retriever died, and Sherry and her Husky moved out, I had gotten attached to Forest.  He was only 10 weeks old when Sherry’s mom dropped him off, and he was raised by the Golden Retriever.  She, the Retriever, mothered the kitten, played with him, and even taught him how to catch mice.  The cat is all I have left that ties me to the little pack we had going out there in the Tark House for a few years.  The lone MBSPark ranger has been feeding Forest, but, from what I hear, he is running around outside, living in a barn.  Most likely, the cat thinks I am dead, or just never coming back, just like Ginger, Sparkle, and Sherry.

[10-08-97]
The inner struggle continues as I reflect upon my suffering in comparison to those whose sufferings are far greater than mine.  Even when a person is facing an official State execution or life in prison, I still cannot keep from getting aggravated when he preaches from his book, “May the heathen know that Christ is God.”

This has nothing to do with morality, but only belief.  Everything is centered around the belief that Christ, Jesus of Nazareth, was crucified under Pilate, suffered, died, was buried, and in three days, rose again and ascended into Heaven, in fulfillment of the Scriptures.  Would He have fulfilled the Scriptures if he rose after only two days?  Maybe his disciples moved the boulder, and then the Holy Rebel went back into the desert to heal.  How long was he healing in the desert before he returned?

For all I know, none of it happened, but I am going to assume, for argument’s sake, that this is an historical event.  When Christ supposedly rose from the dead three days after he died, this is not equivalent to walking among men three days after he died.  This is only equivalent to “the body is missing.”

Although my sister and my mother have this childish hope that I will “become a believer” while I am in jail, I am very much still the non-believer.  I do not believe in the Resurrection.  I guess my devil, my gnosis, my knowledge, is more persistent than my sister thought.  Why must I accept a pack of lies just so as to make other people less uncomfortable about being hoaxed?  I am not at war with Christianity or Judaism.  I just want to be free from coercion and proselytization, and free to challenge assumptions, taken on faith, as radical as the resurrection of the dead.

[10-16-97]
A woman from Mental Health came by our wing to get my signature to release papers to Turning Point in Verona, NJ.  I am trying to get an indigent bed there.  It is only a 90 day program, which is better than 240 days at the Salvation Army!

[10-18-97]
I wonder why humility and a positive attitude are pushed on us as cures when a negative or pessimistic attitude might serve us better in resisting the powers that are robbing our lives from us.  It is as though our lives have been extorted from us, and we are afraid of how bad things would become for us if we dared to look the Ruling Class in the eyes and challenge their authority.

The proletarianization of the working class was an historic shock.  In the United States, this proletarianization of the people has been particularly violent.  Religion, education, legislation, and the use of military or police power became integrated to secure the perpetuation of bourgeois and corporate power.  Things like the clock, that we take for granted now, were originally an assault on the time senses of the people.  Some of us are still agitated by the clock, and we can’t help but think there has to be better way to exist.

There is rampant social unrest and violent clashes between workers and those employed to protect the interests of capital.  The wage, whatever the amount, is a means of oppression that robs working people of the possibility of thinking for themselves, of being the one to decide what they will do, of being autonomous and self-governing, of being free.  Those who oppose this wage-slavery are labeled as radicals.  I enjoy going into McDonald’s for a burger and fries, and I realize a capitalist owner pays his/her slaves a wage.  I also know the workers are free to starve.  There will be another slave to replace the one that takes to the hills.

Money is made out to be a “medium of exchange”, but this is a lie.  There is no exchanging going on between the capitalists and the proletarian wage-slave/consumer.  One is robbing, and the other is being robbed.  The worker owns no capital and shall never have “money”.  It is a big hoax.  We might be better off pitching our tents and forming a squatters’ coalition.  The biggest problem the industrialists have ever had, and, let’s hope, will continue to have, is the problem of handling employees.

The Roman Catholic Church is in the hands of these merchants.  This is another way men and women are “handled”.   I have always been disturbed by paintings of their elegant prince, the jeweled art of the churches.  Christ was an outcast, despised by the world.  He was a revolutionist, a founder of the Socialist movement.  He denounced the exploiters of his time: the scribes, the Pharisees, the lawyers.  He had intense hatred for wealth: he drove out the businessmen and brokers from the temple with a whip.  This member of the working class was an agitator, a lawbreaker, an anarchist, not a prince in a purple robe.
So what’s in it for the Roman Catholic Church to be so conservative?   Why is so much importance placed on rituals and traditions, when it is clear that Jesus of Nazareth was a breaker of such laws?  I don’t see why belief in the Resurrection is even important.  It has nothing to do with the power of his life’s message!  To have the likes of Jesus of Nazareth in his congregation would be a bishop’s worst nightmare!  I guess it is easier to kneel with beads in hand than to walk into the mall and start busting cash registers open with a bat.  It is easier to stand in line like sheep for the wafer than to walk up to the pulpit, push the priest aside, and jolt the congregation with the message that there is no need for belief in God, no need to make a god of Christ.  Although they would have you believe that the Resurrection is the foundation of their faith, the message of Christianity is death on the cross:  “This is what happens to free thinkers like the Nazarene.”

[10-23-97]
What use am I to the captains of corporate industry?  While practical minds gather to engage in useful work, I sit here trying to penetrate the nature of reality, the nature of “the system”, and how it crushes a man into the earth.  Our attachments to what’s being sold bind us to our selling ourselves.

I was bound to my position with the State by employee housing and the freedom of working outdoors in a park.  Even though I am in jail and face fines, I cannot help but experience a secret delight in not being called down to the Region Office to fix leaking pipes or empty their damn waste paper baskets.  It is ironic that in being locked away in jail, I have been set free from many burdens, including the alarm clock.  Do I not continue to experience the great peace of slumber?

[10-27-97]
I left for Booking at 0700, and was in the cage until 08:45.  By 09:00 we were in the bull pen under the Monmouth County Court House.  A headache was pounding in my skull.  We ate sandwiches at 11:00, and by 13:30 I was escorted in shackles up to the courtroom where I met my lawyer for the first time.  He advised me to plead not guilty.  He assured me that he would settle for nothing less than probation upon the completion of a MICA program.

I entered my plea of not guilty, and then waited back down in the bull pen.  At around 14:40, as I was being shuffled in shackles attached the rest of the lucky winners, my lawyer came through the door.  I had been trying to explain, to no avail, to the guards that my attorney wanted me to stay in the bull pen, as we were going to cop a plea.
My lawyer persuaded the brown shirts to cuff me to a bench, with one arm free so I could sign the plea agreement.  If I plead guilty, the eluding charge would be reduced to a third degree crime, which carries 5 instead of 10 years.  The plea also included probation upon completion of a treatment program.  When I finally went back up in front of the judge, he asked me if I was pleading guilty because I was guilty or because I wanted probation.  Needless to say, I tried to explain that I wasn’t technically guilty of eluding, but that I could see how the police may have thought I was fleeing.  My lawyer had to intercede before I ended up going to trial.

I sent a letter to my father, but because of the emergency lock down situation, I was not able to call my mother to let her know what happened in court.  She won’t know what to think when she doesn’t hear from me.  By 22:30 the riot squad came through our wing.  They raided one cell at a time.  I was afraid they were going to take the nine legal pads filled with my notes, but all they did was wreck the cell, throwing my mat on the floor, knocking down books and pads, MCCI garments, etc., all over the floor.

RG was getting tired of this sort of crap, but while cleaning the cell, I was chuckling.  I was so relieved they left my notes in the cell.  I have hundreds of pages of material here, and I don’t need another missing gap in my notes from the abyss.

[10-29-97]
The most sacred book in the joint belongs to a doctor.  I don’t even want to use his initials.  He lost his practice when he was convicted.  I thought I had problems; to lose a job with the State as a maintenance worker will be no big deal compared to what some of these guys have lost.  Now, the most sacred book is a huge Random House Webster’s Unabridged Dictionary with more than 315,000 entries.  Whenever I ask to look at it for a second, Doc tells me to hold on to it for a while, to bring it to my cell.  This book is invaluable to me.  When I study the words in the dictionary in search of meanings, I sense my presence is a spirit coming alive with wonder and a determination to know.
My spirits may be down, depressed from boredom; but let my inner presence, the Ancient One, come alive, and my mental processes begin to experience reality with a clear, unpolluted receptivity.  My physical condition is transformed by my thoughts.  Fears and burdens are lifted when I merge with the ancient one behind my eyes.  This being orients itself to the illusions of solidity as it scans through definitions for approximations of its thoughts.

“The outside world is full of devastating energies, and an organism may only be called adapted to life when it not only receives stimuli, but also has protective means against stimuli.”
– Alfred Korzybski

[10-31-97]

mind – (in a human or other conscious being) the process that thinks, feels, wills, perceives, et cetera.
think – to have a conscious mind

perceive – to become aware of by means of the senses

senses – the faculties by which animals perceive stimuli

mind = perceive = the process that becomes aware by means of the faculties by which animals become aware of by means of the faculties by which animals become aware of by means of the…recurring decimal

mind = think = the process that has a conscious process that has a conscious process that has a conscious mind (the process that thinks)… the process that has a conscious process that has…

Mind is the process that thinks.  The definition of mind utilizes the word ‘thinks’.  The definition of think utilizes the word ‘mind’.  Round and round in circles we go.

Mind is the process that perceives.  To perceive is to become aware of by means of the senses.  Even though we do not find the word mind being used to define perceive, when we look up the word senses, which is used in the definition of perceive, we find that the word perceive is used in the definition of senses!

[11-02-98]
As I promised, I have refrained from taking any material from the character analyses RG and I came up with.  I do want to mention one 60 year old Jersey Jim Doherty, not only because he is such a classic; but, because I am positively certain he would not mind my mentioning a couple of things about him.  He was a ham, constantly entertaining us; he always had a crowd of guys around him out in the yard, telling one story after another of his adventures.  One time he mooned hot air balloons that were flying over the yard, and even the guards were laughing so hard, they were crying.

Jersey Jim was arrested for having an open container of beer – a 12 ounce can of the King of Beers.  When he was brought in front of the judge, and told to pay $500, he said, “Where am I gonna come up with five hundred dollars?  I’m living on a park bench!  Fuck you Your Honor!”

Needless to say, that statement was considered a criminal act in and of itself.  After 40 days in jail, Jersey Jim conceded to write a letter to the judge apologizing for his outburst.  Although Jim had an endless supply of sayings, the cleanest I can recall is, “If you can’t get her with the pisser, get her with the kisser.”

This had always been my philosophy as well, when it came to bestowing sexual pleasure to a female despite relenting erectile vitality.

[11-04-97]
RG and I struggled to complete “the verbal snapshots” of our fellow jailbirds as he is to be released tomorrow.  I have never voted in my life, but the entire jail population, including myself, is hoping Christine gets voted out of office tonight.
“Down with Whitman”, scream the blue collar workers, the proletarians.  Even the queen’s Knight’s, the State Troopers, are against her.  She has not been kind to the police who keep her rule in order.  She only cares about the Ruling Class, the corporate leaders, and has no compassion for the working class, the wage slaves, the small businessmen with trades, nor the police.  When push comes to shove, the police are working class proles as much as their brothers, those whom they are zoo-keepers of.

[11-05-97]
Whitman won the election by only 22,000 votes in a state with 2,000,000 voters.  She only won by 1%!  This is way too close.  Now she can pay back all the insurance companies who financed her campaign.  If she had allowed absentee ballots to be sent in by eligible inmates throughout the state, at 1000 votes per each of the 30 prisons, McGreevy would have won.  If is a big two-letter word.  If I go insane, please don’t put your wires in my brain.

[11-06-97]
I reflect upon the attitudes of the snails that are employed by the state government.  One can’t help but notice the arrogance, the selfishness, the vile cruelty, the false sense of superiority.  I was never a state official anyway.  Where the fuck did they come up with the term “public servant”?  I was a state slave who served the government officials, not the people, not the public.  I was a dog to pull the sled.  I was a sucker to cut down the trees marked for removal by government officials, not marked by the people.  Don’t call the people in the civil service public servants.  They work for the government.  Since when has the government served the people?  The best government is that which governs least, or better still, the government that governs not at all.  What the hell was I doing working for the State anyway?

Worse than the puffed up bags of wind in the administration are those workers in the field who kiss up to these windbags while stealing time and supplies every chance they get.  Then they ridicule, bully, and intimidate those under them who show signs of honesty, integrity, and intelligence.  Where else but on The Simpson’s does one get an accurate commentary on our society?  The problem is that not everyone is laughing at Chief Wigum, Mayor Quimby, Montgomery Burns, or even Homer.  I laugh at the cartoon because it is so real to life. I guess my caricature would be the conscientious employee turned drug addict turned psychotic howler turned jailbird turned writer with a Teutonic battle-ax to grind.  This is good old-fashioned bitterness.

The message I am getting from the State of New Jersey is that it wants to destroy me, to show me the wrath of God.  I have a mind of my own, and I will celebrate not having anything to do with blockheads who fancy themselves as aristocrats.  Neither will I miss rubbing elbows with those imbeciles fighting to crawl up the asses of those who pull the strings, the “masters”.  I used to try to impress these masters myself; but, now that I have seen how quickly their favor shifts to condemnation, I feel like a fool for having jumped through so many hoops only to have a crown of thorns driven into my skull while mocked from all sides.

I will not be so quick to be “the hard worker”.  They don’t care about me, and why should they?  The paycheck should be enough compensation, no?  I don’t like being kept down.  No, the paycheck is not enough.  I see too much and too deep.  I really do hate so many of the personalities in State government that I have to deal with, including the ones that smile in my face and talk behind my back.  Fuck these people!  They think they know who I am?  They can’t even comprehend me.  How could they possibly know me?

[11-08-97]
I think I have become bitter because I have been an approval-seeker.  If I didn’t care what the State Officials thought of me, I would not be resentful.  The trick is to stop seeking the approval of others.  It does not matter if I lose my job with the State.  I will roll with the punches.  The government in general is an institution that uses approval-seeking as motivation for conformity.   There are so many laws that, if enforced automatically when broken, the system would collapse from the burden of having to detain everyone.  There are more laws than there are citizens to break those laws.

Organized religion acts like a magnet on approval-seeking needs in that it dictates how we ‘should’ behave.  Conforming to the dictates of temple, church, or synagogue fulfills the believer’s need for approbation.

Many institutions manipulate us through guilt.  What is the purpose of sitting in a jail cell if not to instill a sense of guilt or even even break a mind (a spirit)? 
Churches are also looking to instill guilt.  Look at the concept of sin, confession of wrong doings, and the promise of eternal life to those who conform. 

I am sick of people questioning me as to just who I mean by “them”.  “They” are “those” who use media, religion, government, and education to define what is normal and accepted behavior.  To be viewed as insubordinate is a very natural consequence of thinking for oneself. 

I think that the statue of Justice, instead of the scale in her hands, should just hold open her purse.  Justice goes like this: those with money are not convicted; the jails are filled with the poor.  If someone is wrongfully arrested, or if the letter of the law is followed instead of the spirit of the law, there is no way for those without “that fucking capital” to beat the system.  Shit, forget beating the system.  Without money one cannot even defend oneself against this industry that swallows lives like a sea monster.  The wealthy are never in the position some of these people find themselves in, so the crimes of the wealthy are quite different from the crimes of the poor.  The wealthy own the judges and the police. 

[11-10-97]
I got word from my mother about Turning Point.  She called them, and they said I should be transported up to Verona by the Sheriff’s Department in a week or so.  I look forward to putting on a pair of blue jeans and a pair of boots.  I can get out of this MCCI garb.  While in rehab, I want to get over the resentments I have against people at work and the local police.  The best way to fight the world is to keep my head together and to stay cool.  What would Randall P. MacMurphy do?  I don’t think he would be brooding and sulking.  I have to remain level-headed, keeping my wits about me.  Know the Enemy. The enemy is that degenerate nurse in charge: Stinkin’ Nurse Radchet with the frstrated vagina, gadd nabbit!

[11-12-97]
With Thoreau I say, “I am not responsible for the successful working of the machinery of society.”

I had made a home for myself out in the woods as an employee and resident of Monmouth Battlefield State Park, but now I have been literally swooped up by the machinery of society, the judicial system.  Honesty is the ability to be cheerful in adjusting oneself to pitiless fact.  Come what may!

[11-15-97]
A comforting thought:  I am a lone man with no wife, no dependents.  What need do I have of the 9 room Tark House?  I can get by with much less.  I will be grateful to dwell in the basement of my mother’s town house. I will put Gary Snyder’s philosophy to the test – get strong on less, nothing need be done.  I will put Christ’s psychology to the test.  Do not worry for the morrow, for the morrow will bring troubles of its own.  Perhaps the blind shall see.

Thoreau said the less work a man did the better for himself and the community.  I will not be destroyed should I lose my driver’s license, my job, and my house.  When I lost Sherry, I thought I would never recover, but I am healed enough to be thankful for her path crossing mine. 

When people say, “It must kill you to have lost that house over something as stupid as fleeing from mace-spraying baboons”, I will reply that a house at a job can often be a prison, and that the Tark House had become a den of iniquity.

[11-16-97]
Although I know my job with the State which includes housing on the most hallowed ground in the county is a great security, I will not allow myself to be trapped by it.  I can survive; I believe this.  There may be a career more suitable to my strengths should this jail-thing destroy that security.

It is the breath of life that writes these words.

[11-20-97]
The headache I had all night has disappeared.  I am locked in my cell with my belongings in two separate plastic bags, one that stays with this institution, one that goes with me in the Sheriff’s Department vehicle.  Yesterday my mother dropped off some clothes up at Turning Point in Verona.  She also packed a couple Mead college ruled composition notebooks, and I look forward to beginning Reflections Upon My Inner Condition.  I hope that the Monmouth County Jail Writings of 1997 come to an end with this entry: “ETG.” 

Everything To Go.

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