Watch Your Step

I don’t know how this happened.  God, I never wanted it to happen.  I was just coming home from the Korean-mart down on the corner with some ice cream, I swear!  But did the judge listen?  Nooooooooo.  Guilty was all he seemed to hear no matter what I said.  “I had no intent to harm.  Why would I want to harm my own mother?  I didn’t even know that was, like, a real thing!” I argued.  All he heard was, “Aggravated assault.”  “I’m the victim here, your honor.  That sidewalk is in desperate need of repair and there were so many people walking around that day.  It’s Los Angeles, for christsakes, I couldn’t have been the only one to step on a seam or crack!” I cried.  All he heard was, “Attempted manslaughter.”  “Honestly, how is this even a law?  It’s a mere coincidence, a grossly unfortunate one in my case, that this even happened at all.  Who cares if I purposefully stepped on that crack?  I didn’t do it to hurt anyone!  The receipt slipped from my hand, I was running to catch it, it landed on the crack, and so I stepped on it to keep it from blowing away.  And anyone who would judge a man and send him to jail based on a child’s rhyme is surly making a mockery of the American justice system, and a blithering, cowardly, superstitious and monumental buffoon out of themselves!” All the judge heard was, “Contempt of court.”

Okay, maybe I shouldn’t have called the judge a buffoon, but my point is still valid.  That saying has been around for years, it started off as a game.  I don’t know how it made it into the law books.  And because it’s a criminal case, my mother can’t stop the proceedings; she can only testify on my behalf.  Not that she’d be able to since she is still in the hospital.  It takes a long time to recover from a broken back.  Hopefully with therapy she’ll be able to walk again some day.

So here I sit in this tiny cell, being treated as a violent offender.  The guards have the authority use force if I happen to walk upon a crack on the floor so I have to watch my where I step.  Needless to say I move pretty slowly nowadays.  Yard time is the worst as there is nothing but pavement out there; I end up just standing near the doorway not moving much until it’s time to go back in.  It’s going to be hard.

Not that I am completely alone.  I have made one or two friends on the inside.  One, Jasper Groms, is in here for severe animal abuse.  He gave his cats some toy mice that he had wrapped up in a box.  He had wanted them to have fun ripping open the package to get to the toys, but when the cats started to investigate the box they all dropped dead right where they stood.

Apparently, he had the same judge as I did.

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