Hooker with a Degree in One Hand and a Rap Sheet in the Other

Hooker with a Degree in One Hand and a Rap Sheet in the Other

July 14, 2018

I have a morbid sense of humor. I find amusement in things that others might find depressing, upsetting, mean…you get the picture. This trait is called “gallows humor.” Yes, I can laugh at the fact that somehow my ivy league alma mater got ahold of my prison address and sent the alumni magazine to the Women’s Community Correctional Center in Kailua on the island of Oahu, state of Hawaii. I had to chuckle at the thought of the alumni affairs office rushing the magazine to me since I was valued as a graduate, only to have the magazine sit in the mail room because inmate desires were low priority. “Next time no come jail,” the ACO (Adult Correctional Officer) snapped at me in Hawaii’s colloquial dialect, called pidgin, when I asked about the late mail. Correspondence from the outside breathed a bit of life into that stagnant prison world. The Alumni magazine also taught me a lesson. I was the same person on the inside, but how people viewed me and made decisions on my worth was determined by what they thought I had done. I was either this or that. I couldn’t be a Harvard grad and convicted felon without people deciding that one of those things negated the other. If I were in an incarceration setting or a university setting someone would think, “she doe not really belong here because of…you know.” The fact is, on a soul level, I am neither. But in this mortal world, I aim to write my story of what it is like to simultaneously be both

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