EarHustle Podcast, The Big Lockup

Golden Gate National Recreation Area


[00:00:00] Nigel: Well, the thing I wanted to talk to you about was your first visit with your mom and --yeah. How did you prep? [00:00:07] New Speaker: So, um, let me get the emotional prep out of the way. I took a lot of deep breaths. Um, I try to like, um, choreograph my, uh, hug, cause I haven’t hugged my mom in a long time in the cell, but[00:00:19] Nigel: wait, wait, wait, how did you practice?[00:00:21] Nigel: How did you choreograph a hug? [00:00:23] Speaker: So I didn’t know. Cause I haven’t hugged someone in a long time. Maybe by then it was 13 years, right? So, I didn’t know if my hand goes around her shoulder or her neck. I didn’t know if it went like diagonally, like two 45 degree angles. And then I was like, you know what? I let her lead like, this is your mom, right. This is my mom. And I don’t know how to hug my mom. So I was nervous about that type of stuff. [00:00:48] Nigel: Did you actually practice hugging somebody else? [00:00:50] Speaker: No, my cellie certainly wasn’t up for that? No, I did not. I just kind of like air hugged myself and I didn’t know exactly like, okay, what, do you go up? Is it down? is it sideways? So like that’s what I was nervous about.[00:01:05] Nigel: What you heard is from Firsts episode 13 of EarHustle. [00:01:13] New Speaker: I grew up in a very well, I guess, predominantly black neighborhood. Right. And when I came to prison, I couldn’t hang out with blacks. I actually had to choose which race or which side that I wanted to hang out with. Filipinos or Mexican. So that was a test in and of itself. Right. Because I couldn’t be who I wanted to be. I couldn’t hang with just anybody I had to actually. Pick a side [00:01:37] New Speaker: The yards are divided into sections of control by each of the races. But I unfortunately, uh, am somewhat oblivious to some of these standards. So one time, for example, I was walking across the prison yard and just wandered into the Latin area. And a young man came up to me and said, excuse me, sir. You know, you’re, you’re white. You’re not allowed to be in here. And I said ohI’m so sorry. I didn’t mean to and walked out. [00:02:08] Earlonne: What you just heard is from Unwritten episode seven of EarHustle.[00:02:18] New Speaker: Being in the SHU for so long, it will affect you in many ways. You know, a lot of times in the SHU, we talk about the SHU syndrome. You know, from not being able to finish a sentence, to forgetting what you’re talking about during the sentence. Sometimes you can’t even carry a full conversation with somebody.[00:02:43] New Speaker: I found it very hard to deal with because all these years I’ve been looking at a blank white wall. Then he come in one day and put this poster up. It just disrupt everything. I’ll be walking around in the cell. And I would think somebody was staring at me, look to the left and I would see the poster. When you move the poster move, like it was staring at you.[00:03:15] Earlonne: What you just heard is from The SHU episode, four of EarHustle.[00:03:25] New Speaker [Curtis] : 2008 came and, um, I was raped in prison and I, I, it took something out of me. It took, uh, um,[00:03:44] I don’t know, maybe I had such a, um,[00:03:51] fantasy about. You know, society’s going to come along and they’re going to look at this and it’s, they’re just going to correct all this. Then when the rape happened, it was like, ain’t nobody coming to rescue you Curtis. Ain’t no way of getting out of this. And this is what you have to live with for the rest of your life.[00:04:13] Nigel: What you just heard is from Left Behind episode eight of EarHustle.[00:04:21] New Speaker: One time. I had four swallows at once and they ended up dying. That year. I think I lost maybe 10. Along the building, they would always fall down and people would come get me like: ‘A, got some more, caught some more, some more’. And so I had to smuggle them into the building and then they would look really strong.[00:04:41] They would even look like they were doing well, but I would leave and come back and one would be down --two would be down. I found out they ended up dying because they needed to be touched, and to feel a connection with some other --with the parent. So when I have to take care of another baby swallow, Oh, and it will happen again.[00:05:04] I will have to keep it in my shirt pocket on my person, so it can hear my heartbeat and my voice and feel connected or nurtured. [00:05:16] Nigel: What you just heard is from Looking Out episode three of EarHustle.[00:05:23] New Speaker: It seems that the older that I get, um, the more I’m kind of living in my memories and, uh, I guess, you know.They can lock the body up forever, but they can’t lock my mind up.[00:05:41] Earlonne: What you just heard is from getting the date episode 10 of your hustle.[00:05:49] To find out more about EarHustle and hear any of these episodes in full visit EarHustle is a proud member of Radiotopia from PRX. [00:06:00]


Produced in San Quintin State Prison, people who are incarcerated tell their stories. Included in The Big Lockup: Mass Incarceration in the United States with written permission from The EarHustle Podcast.

Launched in 2017, Ear Hustle from the Radiotopia podcast network was the first podcast created and produced in prison. It features stories of daily realities inside California’s San Quentin State Prison, shared by those living them. Co-founded by Bay Area artist Nigel Poor, Earlonne Woods and Antwan Will


EarHustle Podcast

Date Created


Copyright and Usage Info