Prison Radio
Joadanus Olivas

I call this “Poker Faces.”

The exterior of my prison peers often contribute to their interior. This one fellow prisoner has devil horns tattooed on his head and “Do Not Resuscitate Me” on his chest, all of his rival gang members crossed out on his back, he has “F*ck a B*tch” tattooed on his face. He walks like out to the whole world, just try me. Please leave this guy alone and don’t trigger him because, I mean, your life could end in a moment.

So this is what this guy’s exterior reads. Inmate, fight me. But in actuality, this prison peer of mine is just a hurt and frightened child who has been abused. He’s just misunderstood. I feel comfortable in the presence of those who are broken. I called this guy a [inaudible]. He came towards me with these little devil horns tattooed and myriad of graffiti tattoos grimacing, cocking his hands back, ready to hit me with a blow. Then he grabbed me and said “Shut up!” We bear hugged each other, horse playing and wrestling, we really laughed. You see, I understand the brokenhearted psychology. I know what moves him. I ride as a Native American does in the wilderness with no saddle. It’s like avatars avoiding the right dragon with the perfect connection. I listen to grown men up and cry. Financial killers. I looked them in their eyes longer than usual. No, I’m not being them, I’m not challenging them. I don’t want any problems. That’s why go towards them, touch them, embracing. I’m being humble with no facade, and they lower their guards for brief moments until they walk off, putting their masks back on and keep their defense mechanisms. Trust me. I know because I relate. I am them. I’m no different. I have my poker face on also.

These commentaries are recorded by Prison Radio.