As I find myself spending an undetermined amount of time in the Douglas County Jail, the unemployment rate is still rising, although it's been in the double digits for a couple decades now. So it is no surprise that, in The Timber Capitol of the World, I sit in jail surrounded by unemployed loggers. They are legally known as harsh characters; criminals, wife beaters, drug users, car thiefs, and angry vagrants.
But I know them individually as Joker, Hater, Conspiracy, David and Jose. Collectively, they are the nicest, most welcoming group of locals I have yet to meet.
The surrounding forests they once worked with chainsaws and cables are now littered with invasive species and disgusting industrious machinery. Unemployed, they now find themselves scrubbing cell floors, baking corn bread, and playing cards behind steel doors, concrete walls, and two way mirrors.
Four nights a week, all the inmates stop whatever they are doing, and turn their absolute attention to a 13" television. They sit and watch reality shows on the logging industry. Like an absurd two-way mirror, they stare intentively into the glass tube. Afterwards, they talk about the good ol' days. The long hours, the money, the girls, their families, and the money.
However, they will never be able to discuss how now, they are nothing more than outdated tools being stored in Climate Controlled Storage Units. And that's the problem with two-way mirrors. If you are on the losing side, it becomes impossible to see clearly through false Reflections.
Written on 07/15/09 from the Douglas County Jail
(Transcribed by Charity)