I’ve been to jail.

It was the single most frightening experience of my life, by FAR.Nothing that I’ve witnessed on this Earth has been truly horrifying… nothing has been incomprehensible and paralyzing.But to be trapped, to have no way out, to lose my freedom …that brought me to the edge of sanity.

I had moved away from home to university.Finally on my own!Like riding a rocket-rail through a warm windstorm, my Tom Selleck mustache tangled up in my post-70’s hair-mop, I was finally as free as a bird!After several hard-won weeks of acclimation, during which I learned the ins and outs of bike paths, office hours, how to obsequiously bow to the Juniors in our dorm, and especially how to say anything other than “What classes are you taking?” to older women, my parents decided it was time to come down to visit their precious son.

So what did I do the day before their visit?The same thing all wanna-be frat boys did during the mid-80’s Me-Generation…Co-ed volleyball and beer!At the end of the kegger party, I was feeling invincible and just possibly a bit too happy.While listening to the B-52’s and backing up in the parking lot, I scraped someone’s car door.Whoops.

Like a responsible young man, I decided to wait for the owner to appear.Within a half- hour, I was balancing on one leg with my nose pointing towards the Heavens, trying to recite the alphabet backwards.I ended up in Santa Barbara County Jail.And that began the experience of a lifetime.

Maybe there is some part of your personality that can relate to my rebellious nature.Maybe there is some tiny bit, like1% of you that resists authority.The heavy, metal cell door clanging shut sounded like a coffin lid.The finality of the moment, as my bloodshot eyes focused on the five other prisoners in our 14×14 cage, was unforgettable. THREAT.Fear.Survival.I couldn’t breathe; I lost all sense of myself.Total disorientation.Anything could happen.Trapped.

At least the Sheriff’s Deputies would protect me, right?Wrong.In fact, the opposite was true.I turned and held the bars and shook with all my chaotic, hysterical strength and demanded my phone call!Demanded my phone call!Demanded my phone call!!For 5 minutes I shook and raged at the world, until finally the Deputy came.Young, muscular, shirt at least a size too small, his crew-cut hair blazed like a solid flat brick of nothing-you-want-to-deal-with.This Deputy grinned at me through the bars, just leaned close to my face and grinned…. and did nothing.

More in the next issue, and…

Onward to Greatness!

David Ferrera – TheMeeting Guy