365 Days Handmade

Making life a better place, one day at a time

Day 147/365: Two Letters Make a Difference

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5.27.2015

At 9:20 AM, I went outside to talk to the podium officer.  “My 9:00 appointment isn’t here yet,” I said.  “Would you be able to track him down?”

“We’re looking for him,” the podium officer assured me.  “I’ve been paging the yard.  I called over at his job in the dining hall, and I just called Education.”

9:30 came, then 9:45, 10:00, 10:15.  Still no inmate-patient.

At 10:20 AM, my patient arrived.  He was brought into my office by a correctional officer, and he looked sullen.

“Mr. Z!” I exclaimed.  “You made it!  Where were you?  Didn’t you hear them paging the yard and calling your name?”

“I was on the yard,” he said.  “I heard them paging.  I heard them calling for Frances, and I didn’t pay them no mind.  That’s not my name.  My name is not Frances.  That’s a girl’s name.”

Later, after our appointment was over and he was gone, I went back to the podium officer.

“I found out why he was late,” I said.  “He told me he heard them calling for Frances, and that’s not his name.”

The officer showed me his list of the day’s appointments.  There was Mr. Z’s name, except the last two letters of his first name had been cut off. There wasn’t enough room on the page, so instead of “Francisco,” the printed name read “Francis.”

Whoops.

“I just call ’em how I see ’em,” the officer said.

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Author: FC5

Happily married and childfree by choice. Licensed clinical psychologist at a state prison for men. I work four 10-hour days in exchange for a 3-day weekend, every weekend. Outside of that, I appreciate my freedom and enjoy a life of various creative pursuits.

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