September 10, 2008
"Excuse me everyone, Can I have your attention? We have a new 'staff' member here. This is Mr. So and So," Warden announces in his usual demeaning tone. Never without his tacky smirk, Warden humiliates another new DOE prisoner. After reading him the riot act and having him sign it, Warden then calls the entire rooms' attention to this unfortunate being. He then leaves him standing awkwardly at the door while the group sizes him up. Like a 'Fish Out of Water,' this teacher is left to navigate the rigid politics of the Rubber Room. Obviously at this point, So and So is feeling pretty bad. EZ walks over and shakes his hand. "Nice to meet you," he says. 3 Seater barely looks up from her laptop. Instead she casually places her shopping bag on to the chair beside her. (Translation- "Don't even think of sitting your butt down over here!") The only thing 3 Seater has been generous with has been her germs. Not only does she have a persistent hacking cough, but someone failed to teach her how to keep them to herself. Ironically, she'd be the first one to raise hell if someone else were coughing. Lucy, a school aide from Chapel Street takes her feet down from a chair, and then offers it to the newbie- thus sacrificing her only foot rest. Newbie passes on the offer and scans the room for a spot less congested. He finally opts for a chair near the doorway.
Remember what the realtor always stressed? Location, location, location. She was definitely on to something. With the room quickly filling up, the goal here is to position yourself where you are not in the way of traffic, not in earshot of the 'Warden', quiet enough to take a siesta and far away from anyone who does not meet up daily with a bar of soap. I am always amazed by the amount of educated people who fail to recognize the value of a shower and a shave...
In his button down shirt and tie, Newbie is now seated at his table in a state of shock. He is definitely not going to settle in anytime today. He hasn't made eye contact with anyone. He is tapping his fingers on the desk and well as shaking his knee up and down. He is not ready to talk. Moocher offers him the newsapaper which he politely declines with a waving gesture. He is definitely not ready to read. Finally, after about an hour, he lies his head on the table and falls into a deep, much needed sleep.
Blogger JUSTICE not "just us" said...
Look, your rubber room has to stop this! By allowing Warden to do this you give him the upper hand. Let them know you, the inmates, control the institution not the other way around. Form a greeting committee to make every newbie welcomed. I know my people were political prisoners(the real deal) and I have learned that in "prison" it is the prisoners who rule.
They can control so far as you let them control you. You have be united!
Political Prisoner on sabbatical
September 14, 2008 3:07 AM