March 2007 - Randy Halprin

Randy Halprin
 "We tend to see a person in the moment, not as the journey they travelled to get here."  Kat Lehmann

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March 13th, 2007

Man...I just got done listening to a very powerful program on the radio about a guy who was just killed by the state, Joseph Nichols. It brought tears to my eyes...Check out the archives for the show “Earth 101” and the date 3/13/07. It was a really moving program, and they were interviewing his family...It really hit me hard.  

Today is kind of blah.. It's raining and I know I'm going to be moved. I really don't have a lot to say today. Just wanted to inform people of the show I listened to.


March 12th, 2007

7:56pm...I just came in from being outside for 3 hours. I goofed around and played some ball, I had to play bare foot, which lead to all sorts of craziness. I even managed to take a direct hit in the nuts. Talk about some unpleasantness! I fell down rolling around on the cement after my basket ball ricoched off the wall and.. wham! The guy I was outside with said, "Good thing you don't need 'em anymore". I said "Bull crap! I like to know that these puppies are still in good shape." We both laughed hysterically. Oh, and I lost today. I'm losing my mojo….I really need my new tennis shoes.

So, I heard that Doil Lane, a guy I've mentioned in prior entries (he has mental disabilities, like a kid trapped in a man's body) had his sentence communted to a life sentence. Thank G-d. He's been transferred from death row and into general population. I hope he'll be okay. He needs to be in protective custody, in my opinion. I hope people will pray he'll end up okay.

Not much else happened today. I'm waiting on my shower...


March 11th, 2007

I didn't accomplish anything yesterday. Just sat in bed and wallowed in my own self pity. Now I'm playing catch up as I listen to the radio. I don't know, it just seems at times I don't want to do anything other then stare at a blank wall and watch the paint fall off (it literally does at times! In flecks..). What's odd about it is, I wont be thinking of anything. My mind will be blank. It's like watching T.V. with static. White noise. Good thing I woke up energized and ready to go. I hopped out of bed, started exercising and then did all of my laundry. Weekends really stink here. I miss the days when we could actually go to recreation on Sundays. Bah.  

Guess I'll wrap this up for the day and get it ready to send out.


March 9th, 2007

It's Friday and I really haven't done much today. I got into it with a guard this morning. I'm not a very deep sleeper and can be awoken very easily. Plus, I've pre-programmed myself to wake up at six in the morning to tell the guards I do plan on going to recreation; that way they can't say you said "No" in your sleep, as they tend to do...So, at about 6:45am the guard says, "You ready? If not you refuse recreation." I looked at him and said, "Say, you didn't ask me crap." I just got out of bed and he says, "Well, yes I did. You better get ready now." The guard replied. Then his co-worker chimed in, "C'mon, let's refuse him. He ain't ready." So, I say, "I'm telling you right now, you're not going to take my recreation from me. Y'all didn't ask me to get ready or even if I was going. Give me ten minutes to brush my teeth and wash my face. Jesus.." Then he says "I'll be back in five minutes, and if you're not ready, I'm refusing you." I did get my recreation, but geeze, some of the crap one goes through!  

The day did get better, but I know it's going to be one long weekend! I've got so much to do...Ugh. I'll close now.  


March 8th, 2007

Just got back from seeing my attorney. First, I have to describe what an absolute gorgeous day it is! Warm and bright, I'm going to get cliched here, but man the birds were chirping and hopping around the green grass growing within the barbed wire fences. Patches of clovers and wild flowers were growing all over the prison ground. I could even smell honey suckles on the wind. It brought a smile to my face.  

When I arrived at the visitation building, I went in and was told to go to a booth. I had the handcuffs removed and my lawyer showed up. Things are going well. One of my co-defendants signed an affidavit saying I was not a shooter and I was told that another one of my co-defendants was willing to sign one on my behalf, also. The only sad note is that the latter co-defendant is dropping all his appeals and there's no talking him out of it. This means he will be given an execution date any moment. Then he will have about three months left to his life. I asked my lawyer what his demeanor was like and he said that he really seemed to be at peace. I was happy to hear that.

When I was leaving to go back to the death row building, I stopped and told the guard, “Hold on, let me enjoy the scent of these honey suckles.” Oh man, the many things we take for granted in a normal everyday life. It made me wish I could run around on the clovers and grass bare footed! It brought back a memory of being in high school...I used to be really good at picking out four leaf clovers from a patch and I would give them to my girlfriend. Haha. I was such a dork! So, all in all...Today was lovely.


March 7th, 2007

They did move me last night. I'm not in too bad an area, although the section is pretty run down...Very poorly kept. I've got decent cell neighbors, though. I don't have a whole lot on my mind today, but just a little while ago I received some Christian ministry newsletter. I usually just glance over them and toss them out, because most are full of stuff like, “Better ask for forgiveness now or you're going to BURN in the firey pits of hell..” but this one contained a few really beautiful poems from an anonymous guy on Texas Death Row, so I wanted to include one with today's entry. Here it is...

“Morning Sun”
By anonymous man on death row..

This morning
while on death row
I had a wondrous experience
of nothing so uncommon as joy,
a shower with hot water, steam and soap;
in that small space
-the showers scarcely larger than a closet
I thought of nothing
so common as suffering
and stood instead in awe
of the abundance of God.
afterwards, I stood before the plain
steel door, rusted to a brownish-black,
and marveled at the spary of water drops
which shone like the suns
scattered along the surface
of our universe-
and there!
an errant trickle slipped away
like a falling star,
a comet made of dust and ice
throwing itself into the heart
of the night.
I wondered,"What is this
darkness that shrouds our eyes
from the glorious dawn and
the light that shines
in our lives?”
There is nothing so common as the suffering;
and nothing so uncommon as the morning sun‟
which we manage to miss each morning
of our life.
Next time, please,
stand at the brink of dawn,
and watch it
for me.

Not bad at all. Loved the imagery and emotion. He described our showers exactly as they are and the desire to want more, but to trust in what God gives us.


March 6th, 2007

Today has been decent. Right now I'm waiting to go to recreation and do some exercising. I'm trying to get most of everything out of the way now, because I know I'll probably be moved tonight. I don't know why, but I was thinking about global warming and the effects it's been having on our earth. I read Al Gore's "An Inconvenient Truth" not too long ago and it was a very eye opening book. The rate of development and destruction of natural habitats and places is scary. I can remember as a kid in Arlington, Texas there was an area that was nothing but acres of pecan trees, we could go anywhere and find a pecan tree and pick the pecans up and take them home to eat them. Now it's nothing but shopping centers and malls. I'm a city person, I've lived in cities all my life pretty much, and I like the city, but I look back and think "geeze, the building and raping of the land has to stop somewhere." Will there ever be a time where it all peaks and we realize, hey, maybe we should tear all this crap down and let nature do it's thing again? Or will it take mother nature to strike back and wake us up? Who knows...I see earth in a weird way now, it's like a spaceship or an orb with life contained within. We can take care of it and steer it in the right way, or let it crash and burn.  

Not much else has been going on around here. I seem to be in a sort of uneventful limbo of late.


March 5th, 2007

Today was very boring. I had intended on going outside and enjoying this beautiful spring like weather, but all of the guys down stairs turned down recreation. Mind you, I stayed up late listening to this wonderful travel show about Tokyo, on PBS until close to 2am, and I was surprised when the guard was knocking on my cell door asking if I was ready for recreation at 6:00am...I said...

"What about one row?"
"They all say it's too cold to go outside so, you're up" the guard said.  
For a split second I was going to get up but then said "Nah, screw it I'm sleeping in". Now I can really tell I'm getting close to 30. I never used to sleep in! Cripes!

I've spent most of the day typing and after dinner I need to straighten up my cell. When I write I become possessed and my cell looks like crap when I wind down. Plus, I've got a feeling I'm moving tonight. Figures, too. A really good episode of "Heroes" is coming on. ..Sigh.

I think that‟s about it for the day.


March 3rd, 2007 recreation, and man, it's a perfect day for ball playing. A little chill has settled in, but by all standards, perfect. I haven't done much, just started reading a book on Buddhism, written by a Jewish guy. It's about how Judaism and Buddhism can go hand in hand, and honestly, I am really into Buddhism right now, trying to find that pure inner peace. It's so hard in this environment. And while I know I've grown spiritually, and have changed for the better in trying to live compassionately and lovingly, it still is easy to get caught up in the negativity and slip into depression. I know most of depression is a genetics thing and I can't do much about that, but I think that if I could find that inner peace, I will beat it back a lot. I tend to get frustrated about the things I want to do but can't, because of my situation. I feel helpless, hopeless, at times. But it won't keep me from trying to find that path to pure inner peace.

Maybe a good movie will be on later that I can listen to.


March 1st, 2007

Today was a nice day. My friend, David came to visit and we had a great time. He's a wonderful friend and I love him dearly. He's been a great mentor, also. The day started of kind of crazy. I was afraid our visit was going to be cancelled because there were tornado warnings for the area. I thought, great, just my luck! Actually if a real tornado hit, I'd probably be the first screaming “Please! Just suck me up and spit me out over the gulf somewhere! Fling me to Africa! Anywhere but Livingston, Texas!!!”

Anyways, it looked real ugly outside. Fortunately visits were not affected. The day turned out to be quite warm and lovely, though. As I was walking back there were some birds pecking around on the grass alongside of the fenced side walk that leads back to the death row building. I wish I could've stopped and just watched them for a bit. I really miss the experience of watching nature and life, work around you. Most of the time I can watch the birds and other creatures outside of my window, depending on the spot I'm moved to, but nothing beats being up close and personal. Another one of those things easily taken for granted. When I got back to my cell I was pooped, but then it was time to go outside with my neighbor. We played some ball and I started off with a five game lead, but he came back and beat me ten to five. Sheesh. I'm blaming the bugs (there were millions of may flies everywhere!) and the fact I had to run in work boots, 'cause I turned my tennis shoes in to order a new pair. That's my excuse anyways! Now I'm just going to kick back and relax and get some sleep early tonight. Wow. Can't believe it's already March.


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