(Written July 11, 2018)
I would like to talk about something that has been on my mind lately. And it has to do with postage. I have a few people who write to me for which I am grateful for, you people reach into this darkness that surrounds me and shed someone of your light onto me. For that I am forever grateful.
But the thing is this, I don’t have a lot of money, I survive on the kindness of those that have been writing me for a while, and there aren’t very many of them. They help me when they can, my friends are not rich and like everyone they are having bills to pay, they work hard for their money. I always feel bad that they help me but they do so because they care about me and want me to have a few creature comforts I am afford in here, which aren’t very many. Radio, winter clothing some art supplies and some commissary items from the commissary because they want to help make my life here just a little more bearable. And it does help, it helps a great deal to know that they, when they can, which isn’t all the time, are willing to send me a little money so I will have a little something to eat for those days when they kitchen feeds us things that people out there in the free would spit out. They over cook foods, to the point it is nothing but mush. Will it keep you alive? Well, I like to use that Crocodile Dundee saying: “It will keep you alive but it taste like shit”. So yes, it will keep me alive and it is either eat it or go hungry. So those that do send me a little of their hard earned money I am truly grateful to.
However, I like to write, and anyone who writes, I write back, but TDCJ does not give me postage for free. They would allow me 5 dollars of postage a month but that is only if you haven’t had any dollars sent to you in 6 months. I believe they will only classify one as indigent if they have less than five dollar on their account. I’m not actually sure how the whole indigent process works, but my point is, TDCJ will not give me free postage to write anyone. And if I was to get any money within a six month period TDCJ would take any money I ‘owe’ them for being indigent.
As I said, I deeply enjoy writing to new people and trying to build new and long lasting friendships. But I must say, I just don’t think it is fair to my few friends who do help me to make my life just a tiny bit more bearable by sending me that little money they can, to use it to write others who in turn cannot or will not help with postage. I hope those who in the future who wish to write me will take that into consideration. I do enjoy writing. But I am not rich, nor are those who do provide me with what little they can. By me spending their hard earned money writing to others and then causing myself to do without things that they sent me a little money for, is not right.
So I am asking, for those that wish to write me please keep in mind that postage isn’t free. And if you can help, I would greatly appreciate a little help with postage. I know you folks work hard for what you have, I do not like asking believe me, I do not, it makes me feel less than a man having to, I beg for help. But there is it, I do need help. But this is not a requirement, if you can, you can. If not, it is understood and I will try my best to write back. Your letters and kinds words of support mean more to me than you know or that I can express. But I have to ask, if you sent me money for survive on, and I used it all on writing people … and many don’t write back, would you approve of that? I don’t think you would. I know I would not. And for those who don’t write back, I understand, it isn’t easy to write someone on Death row facing death. Your intention was good and it was well received, but it feels a bit to me as having a 1.15 in postage wasted.
So I ask those who may want to write me, please think about that before you do, and try and understand that when I do ask, I am not out to use anyone or take a personas kindness for weakness.
I had one woman whom I thought we were hitting things off very well, that I asked for some help, and she was willing enough, but then, just out of the blue kind bit into me.. about how hard she has to work for her money that she isn’t rich, and thought I was playing some silly game with her, which i was not. I don’t play silly little games, people get hurt when games are played and I don’t know what it was to this day, but she felt the way she did and I could tell by her letter, she was hurt at just the thought of me using her. And that in turn caused me to feel bad, because I was enjoying my time with her, and it took a lot for me to get up and just ask her if she would be willing to help. I don’t like asking. But It is a must at times. I’m not out to use or hurt anyone. There is too much of that In the world already, I know you damn sure don’t need that from me.
But I can assure you, any one you wish to write here on Death row, or in prison for that matter all over the world, will need some help. I have no family, I have a young aunt who will help me when she is able, but like you and everyone else, she works hard for her money, has bills and there have been times that if it wasn’t for her I wouldn’t had had anything. But that same thing can be said for my friends who help me, I have a young friends who has grown very dear to me, she is a single mother, and she will send me a little something when she can, which again, isn’t every day or ever week or every month. But she is understanding. I feel bad each time. Again folks, my point is, I need some help, we all do. Many of us here are abandon by our family. Our pen friends become our family, you share photos with us, you send us photos of you pets, children, I have watch my friend Mikayla’s son Matt grow up in photos and get to hear stores of him when I haven’t seen photos of my own blood family in 25 years. My cousins have had children and I don’t even know what they look like. So you can take that to the heart, you people mean a great deal to us. And speaking for myself, my friends mean the world to me. But bottom line, postage ain’t free.
But with that said, please understand that shouldn’t be a reason for you not to write, speaking for myself again, I will always try and write back. But if I have to choose between those who sent me the money and those who haven’t or can’t I, will always choose those who did.
Then there are those who write and offer all kinds of help, getting me hopeful that I have found someone to help share the burden by helping any way that they are able allowing to ease off those that have been fulfilling my every request. They offer, but then when I ask for something , or give them something that will be very helpful if they can do it, they do nothing or in most cases, I never hear from them again. I have sent legal work to people, blogs to type out and only to have it ignored and my legal papers kept. Please do not offer help just to offer it. If you cannot follow through with it, I say this because it caused me to do something I had never done before and that was that I without Invitation reached out to someone in an act of desperation. I wrote a total stranger who had every right to be upset and tell me off. But she didn’t. She seemed to understand, but I did that after sending things to others only to have them keep it, and just thought to hell with it, I will write a total stranger. I have never done before and will never do so again.
So to her thank you for understanding. But to everyone else, I just ask that you take everything I have said into consideration. I do like writing, all of us do, you and your letters are what keep us sane. But it takes postage and postage cost money. Money I do not have. Money that most of us do not have.
Your friendship is deeply appreciated, your letters mean a lot. And I will always try and write back to anyone who takes the time to write me.
Thank you for taking the time to read this, and hopefully you can feel where I am coming from.