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Occupy Shit Hole
Those that know me know that I was the definitive news junkie before I got locked up. Some would say that my thirst for accurate information on world happenings bordered on neurosis. Consequently, a lack of real news has been one of the most frustrating aspects of being incarcerated. The few papers that still deliver to prisons arrive about two days late. Of the 5 televisions that divide the unit, only one airs “news” – and only from 6 until 7 AM (when all TVs are cut off) and almost always Fox “News”.
I swear to God, sometimes I feel like I’m being Punk’d.
For the most part, I’ve been good at adhering to the most valuable piece of advice I received about doing time: “Keep problems out of the TV rooms”. Almost every beating since I’ve been here has happened in one of them. But as I was walking by a couple days ago, a headline caught my eye that pushed my patience past the point of reason: “Occupy Violently”.
I walked in while an “Expert” explained how the Occupy Movement and its demonstrators were mostly George Soros-funded hooligans, homeless and mentally-challenged people that had nowhere else to go.
I have friends out there. I know that not to be the case.
And so, in a fit of courage fueled equally by frustration, anger and a desire to retain a piece of my former self, I decided to stage my own one-man demonstration by Occupying the Range 2 TV Room. That morning, In an almost unheard of act of defiance, I changed. The fucking. Channel.
There were huffs, puffs and pigeon chests from the regulars, including Mr. Lyon (a 1%’er serving 18 months for not paying taxes, caricatured here in pencil and coffee), who waved his cane and delivered a brief, spittle-laden fit of hoots and hollers regarding Liberal Media… but in the end, those that didn’t want to watch local news simply grabbed their coffees and left. It felt good, and while the repercussions of that act have directed mean-mugs and mumbles at my face, I remind myself that Occupy Oakland is getting tear gas directed at theirs, and, for the briefest of instants I feel like I’m a part of something again.
Special thanks to Dev, Isis, Ean, J.F., and everyone else trying to keep me informed as to what’s really going on out there. I respect the Hell out of what you are doing.
Be Safe. Be Smart… be good to each other,
A word from the Artist...
Aside from being my mental lifeline to the outside, this blog is an effort to help provide my beautiful son, Orion, with a little support while I am away. Any profit generated by the Ads on this blog get split between him and a charity that builds wheelchair accessible playgrounds for disabled children.
Aside from that, my spirit pretty much survives on sincere correspondence from the outside world. Letters sent by anyone are more valuable to me than clean socks. Write me, and I'll write you back.
Dante Orpilla #49007-112
FCI SHERIDAN, SATELLITE CAMP, P.O.BOX 6000
SHERIDAN, OR 97378
DO NOT SEND FUNDS TO THIS ADDRESS
On June 16th, 2010, I was sentenced to serve 28 months in a Federal Penitentiary, for possessing with intent to distribute a Class A narcotic. This blog is a visual representation of that experience. Please enjoy responsibly.
For the better part of my life I have operated under the beautiful assumption that mans greatest gift is his ability to create. And so I do. My name is Dante. I am an artist, a musician, a writer and, above all, a very proud father.
Please note that messages are sent in writing to Blackmarket Arts and due to his situation he will not be able to respond. If you would like to begin a correspondence, please write to him.