Prisoners are persons whom most of us would rather not think about. Banished from everyday sight, they exist in a shadow world that only dimly enters our awareness. They are members of a "total institution" that controls their daily existence in a way that few of us can imagine. "[P]rison is a complex of physical arrangements and of measures, all wholly governmental, all wholly performed by agents of government, which determine the total existence of certain human beings (except perhaps in the realm of the spirit, and inevitably there as well) from sundown to sundown, sleeping, walking, speaking, silent, working, playing, viewing, eating, voiding, reading, alone, with others. . . ." It is thus easy to think of prisoners as members of a separate netherworld, driven by its own demands, ordered by its own customs, ruled by those whose claim to power rests on raw necessity. -- Justice William Brennan, dissenting in O’Lone v. Estate of Shabazz, 482 U.S. 342, 354-55 (1987).

Wednesday, March 28, 2007

Going Away Party at Wizeguys

I am self-employed and work out of my home. To get out of the house, I eat lunch at Wizeguys Pizza Bar in Charlotte almost every weekday and occasionally at night. While the pasta buffet, as good a deal as it is, and the vodka tonics are not the best for my waistline, it has become my version of Cheers, a place "where everybody knows your name." I joke that I come for the "drama" but, ironically, now the joke seems to be on me because my life has become the "drama."

Today, at lunch, they threw a little surprise going away party for me. I got a big cookie and a card from everyone. Even got a "soap on a rope" from Ray. Very cute. Thanks Ronna for the card and cookie. Thanks Colleen, Britain, Justin for the nice comments.

Click on images in enlarge.

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