An Inmate Survival Guide
First time? You look a little scared. I was scared when I got here, too. At least you made it through the cavity search. That can be unpleasant, especially for uterus owners who have front and back holes.
At least you look good in that jumpsuit! They just redesigned them to be more inclusive. Rainbow is the new black, am I right?
I have to warn you: some of the guards like to play fun little games with prisoners. Sometimes they’ll make a new inmate guess their pronouns, which they change all the time. If you guess wrong, you get the hose. It won’t be pleasant, but you’ll learn fast!
What did you say you’re in here for? You wrote a letter to the local school board complaining about the kindergarten teacher? What did yours do, ask your kid to interrogate their whiteness? Give them masturbation lessons? Ah, prescribed puberty blockers without telling you! Yikes. This is why you can’t let your little girls even go near the toy trucks—the instant they start playing with them, they get turned into boys.
It gets chilly at night, but lucky for us, the grandmas in the cell next door are good at knitting. They’ve been knitting cozy blankets using nothing but dried rat entrails and the shredded American flags they give us to use as toilet paper. The poor dears have been here ever since this place opened. Yep, solitary confinement ever since the cops opened the doors at the U.S. Capitol on January 6th, and they wandered in to take selfies.
Now repeat after me, loud enough so everyone can hear: They are traitors to the regime! They are violent threats to democracy!
Good. A few more tips: the chow is mostly soy pellets, mealworms, and “Impossible” meat, meaning, it’s impossible to digest. You can always barter with the guards for tastier food, if you brought anything of value with you. The head guard on our cell block seems to prefer red MAC lipstick, edibles, and brightly colored panty hose in size XXXL. Xer spends most of xer’s time making Tik Tok dance videos with the other guards, so just keep your head down and maybe xer won’t take a liking to you.
Oh, what did I do to get in here? Well, you remember that social media site, Twitter? Well, someone must have hacked my account and sent a few mean tweets blaspheming the Regime. Can you imagine that? I mean, I would never, ever criticize our esteemed leader! Never! Of course Leader Biden does not wear a hidden earpiece through which his handlers whisper commands! I would never, ever think such a thing!
You’ll meet our other cellmate later. They dragged Jennifer to another gender re-education seminar this morning. Her crime? She says she refused to let her son escort the male-bodied prom queen to prom. Yeah, she’s a TERF. But not for long, ha-ha. The Regime has ways of opening your eyes to their truth. Later, we all have to report to mandatory training on how to sew the new Pride flag in the prison sweatshop. Just remember: the horizontal stripes represent gay, the chevron represents fake.
Once you get used to it, this place is not that bad, actually. There’s a ton of celebrities here! Marjorie Taylor Greene is in the next wing, and I heard her new cellie is Candace Owens! We have the best inmates, don’t we, folks?
And guess what? Rumor is that late last night, Tucker Carlson arrived in the VIP men’s unit. That’s where Kyle Rittenhouse and the My Pillow guy are locked up. I hear the guards force him to make pillows stuffed with the hair they shave off inmates’ scalps, which they sell to prison officials. Capitalism, eh Comrade?
Anyway, we better hit the work detail. We have to “do the Work,” as they say, LOL. This month they’ve got us digging out a new underground tunnel. I think they built this entire prison under what used to be a pizza place in the Before Times. Comet something? Anyway, it’s hard labor, but it’s not all bad. They play the new Amanda Gorman spoken word poetry album really loud to help inspire us as we toil. She’s so brilliant and talented! Don’t you agree, Comrade?!
Okay, the fat guard in stilettos just walked away. Here, take these ear plugs—you’ll need them.
Come on, don’t cry! It could be a lot worse.
Look on the bright side: at least Pride month’s over.
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Image: Plato's Allegory of the Cave, by Jan Saenredam, according to Cornelis van Haarlem (1604, Albertina, Vienna).
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