About 10 days ago a new guy, by the name of Dre, came to the unit. To characterize him as strange would be an understatement.
Dre keeps to himself as he spends all day walking laps in the dayroom. He’s constantly talking to himself followed by sudden bursts of laughter and some funny looking dance moves he does with his hands, arms, and shoulders.
In the chow hall, he sits by himself and continues his conversation over ten cups of water. He’ll pound a cup of water, then get up, walk across the chow hall, fill his cup up, walk back to his table and pound it. He’ll do this up to ten times in a row. Back to back to back. I’ve never said a single word to Dre. I’ve only observed him from afar.
I had a double-header in softball, that means 2 games in one day. The first game I did awesome. I went 5 for 5 at bat, drove in 6 runs, and scored 5 times myself. Monster game! We won 24-12.
Later on that day I was headed to yard for the second game. Dre started to follow me super close. I slowed down hoping he would pass. He didn’t. I sped up, and so did he.
Keep in mind, I’ve never had any type of interactions with Dre, not even eye contact.
All that changed when I finally looked at him and said, “Hey there, how you doing?” as we’re walking down the breezeway in route to the yard. He says nothing. His eyes are locked on me.
Maybe once we get in the yard he’ll branch off and go his own way.
He just stared at me, mean mugging. I notice his fists were clinched.
We get in the yard and I stop at a table and act like I’m tying my shoe. He circles around me and stops right by me. He starts swaying side to side like he’s about to take off on me. I get extremely nervous! I try to walk away from him, but he closely follows me. Mean mugging. Fists clinched. Eyes never leaving me.
I walk out on to the softball field where everyone is warming up. Dre follows me. I don’t want to stop and let him get too close to me. So I weave in and out of a few guys. Dre is right there, fixated on me with clinched fists. I get scared. Not because I fear Dre, but because I fear this bizarre situation I’m in. I don’t want to have to defend myself by use of force.
By now everyone has stopped warming up and they’re watching him follow me around. Or should I say, “chase me around.”
That’s when I say, “I don’t know what’s going on with this dude. I’ve never said a word to him. He’s tripping!”
Finally, someone who knows his name says, “Dre, what are you doing? Come here, let me talk to you.”
For the first time in 5 minutes Dre finally takes his eyes off me. (That’s also when I learned his name is Dre.) He looks at the other guy who says again, “Come here, let me talk to you.”
Dre walks away from me and towards him. Together they walk off the field. I can’t even warm up. I keep my eye on Dre. That’s when I see an officer approach him and send him back to the unit.
Needless to say, by now I’m completely discombobulated…I was tripping! For a few minutes there I didn’t know what he was going to do. I felt like he was stalking me. I felt like he was going to attack me and I’d have to defend myself. The last time I had to defend myself, I ended up losing my EFV’s for 5 years! (see: How I Lost My EFV’s For 5 Years)
We lost the softball game 8 to 14. I did horrible. I went 1 for 5 at bat. All I could think about was this crazy nut case and what might happen next. Will he be in the unit waiting for me? What if he starts following me again? Out of all the people, why is he focused on me? How am I going to deal with this guy?
Back in the day I would’ve confronted him in an aggressive manner. And if he bucked up, I’d knock him out! But today I am a different man. Violence isn’t an option.
Its been 2 days since that incident and I’ve been completely avoiding him. That means I can’t move freely. I must always know where he is at all times. This is a huge inconvenience for me. But it’s my best option. Because a bigger inconvenience would be going to the hole, losing good time, getting kicked out of the dog program, losing my EFV’s, and relapsing after 6 violent-free years.
I’ve prayed about this challenging situation. I’ve never experienced anything like this. Prayer has led me to accept this as a test I must overcome. At all cost I must do what’s right. In order to successfully solve this I must display mental fortitude, be disciplined, and conduct myself with intelligence.
Only 13 more years of this craziness and I’m outta here. Thank God!