Diesel Therapy. We got asked this question a few days ago and are attempting to describe the exactness of the term. What does this term mean to those of you who never spoke it? What do you believe it to be? In the comments section I am eager to hear what you at first thought it meant – the responses are always interesting. Please don’t copy one another – this is going to be a great experiment.
On with the prison term, “Diesel Therapy”
“All aboard!” The Conductor yells loudly after blowing his whistle. Spit still fresh on the mouthpiece he watches as the passengers clamber into the coach ready to embark on a fantastic journey. Not really…
This is how I used to imagine it. I daydreamed a lot back then, although my Conductor wore a neat and tidy uniform and you could see the ticket punch attached to his belt by a piece of gold chain. The real “conductor” of this trip was one of a group of men as mean as the convicts and prisoners I was attached to.
You see, “Diesel Therapy” is a term used by most who have traveled the bus line that ferries prisoners to and from federal institutions and some camps. Run by the Federal Board of Prisons, it is basically another machine with which to control, dehumanize and demoralize, people.
Don’t get me wrong, there were quite a few people on that bus that should have been stuck in a cell forever. People so violent and mean the system gave up and occasionally spits them out and into other facilities to keep them separated from their gangs or structured lives.
So be it for the sick and twisted scumbag (they have those on the outside too, they just haven’t been caught for ripping off taxpayers yet) but, there were those of us that were non-violent offenders (don’t ask, I too was once young and dumb), addicted to a poison that could have been helped by a better healthcare system for rehabilitation.
Diesel therapy. The very term still gives me goosebumps. Just knowing I will never have to do that again is fantastic, but I know some people are traveling right now. Chained to the same seat I was chained to. Eating the same type of box lunch I had to eat and sitting next to murderers, rapists and the like.
Now, most of you are starting to get the picture about what this is all about, but like any good mystery, I’ll divulge little by little through these paragraphs rather than spit it all out like a wiki on prisoner transport vehicles.
As for the box lunches, yes thank you John Taxpayer for providing my meal. I am eternally grateful there was something. But, it was unlike anything I have ever had to eat.
Once when I was preparing to go into the service, we were put up at a run down hotel to be picked up in the morning after our tests. In the morning we were woken up and told that breakfast would be served in one of the meeting rooms. Yes, thank you Uncle, the bread was moldy, the eggs were a tinge green from sitting out or whatever – disgusting – this is how my government was going to feed me? No, I think this was just to test me… but I digress.
The box lunch: a baloney(?) sandwich. The baloney not being the good kind (is there any?). The bread with mold. A cookie so hard I could have broke it over the head of the guy next to me and really done a number on him. The orange, well, that was ok. You learn something about fruit when its the only thing edible. You can eat the entire thing as I couldn’t peel the bastard. Skin just wouldn’t come off. Yea, maybe a tiny piece here or there, but it was like removing old scotch tape from a cold window. Little piece by little piece.
Ok, with lunch done and after having made new friend of the guy sitting next to me (I gave him my sandwich because I didn’t like him) we were on our way. I longed to sing travel songs like “1 billion bottles of beer on the wall”, or play games like “I Spy” – but that was a no no – you had to be quiet. Usually didn’t happen so sleep was also not long.
Our captors. Ah yes who wouldn’t remember those men who took care of us to make sure our journey was memorable and enjoyable? Now, don’t get me wrong, I think of things for some time prior to going into full time drama mode.
Overlord bastards… but do you blame them? Having no idea my crime was a simple act of stupidity (sad but true), they believed everyone was there to bust their heads if they turned their back on them long enough.
Who wouldn’t be paranoid? Could you imagine standing in a room with 50 guys and all of them wanting to maim, gas or kill you? Lets not forget one of these special passengers may have a special surprise for you hidden deep in his keister if only he can get to it, and you in this short period of time.
Sitting on the bus of fumes
So there we sit, shackled to a chair with the smell of body odor, old farts and diesel fumes permeating the air (hence “diesel therapy”). I often thought the guards must like it – overpowering to say the least, that smell stays in your nostrils like any other familiar smell, although this one will bring on all the bad things you have ever had to imagine or deal with which is why I hate city buses.
Off to our new home. Wait, but first a stop! No, nothing scenic, the big ball of yarn and the worlds largest frying pan will have to wait another day. The bus driver has done his 12 hours and needs to rest. Herded like cattle we are moved from the bus… ahh fresh air… to a holding cell and to the smell of sweaty unwashed men again.
Often if you pull into a stop too late you may as well forget about dinner. Forget about making up for it at breakfast. No joke. Meals are often forgotten, a lot.
So in the morning, usually around 3AM, they gather you up and inspect you. Yes that’s right, even though you have been “inspected” numerous times, you never know who pulls a Merlin and conjures up a shank in the span of a few hours, only to want to get caught with it… incredible.
So, yes, strip down, open your mouth, raise your arms, flap your ears, lift your #### (and for you ladies and larger men – pick up your breasts). Now please turn around bend over and cough. Now get dressed and lets go for a ride!
So on the bus we go again, traveling to our new home, never knowing when the the ride will end. In retrospect, not a half bad idea. What better way to keep people from knowing where you are, like affiliated gang members and such. But still, one of the worst trips I have ever taken in my life.
Down to science and a little wiki about Diesel Therapy:
Diesel Therapy is when you are placed with a group of federal prisoners on a bus headed to a penitentiary. This ride can last several hours to several days. Yes, you read that right several days. You will be criss-crossing the states on the Club Fed Busline to get to the penitentiary you will do your time at.
Then again, they may move you in a few months or a year, just to keep things interesting.
It is what it is and you never wish to travel with them again. Hence my great idea for a scared straight bus-ride for juvenile offenders. Don’t give them jail-time, give them 5 days on “the bus.”
Now, for those of you who guessed right, a special prize: pick it dream it – its yours. For those of you who guessed wrong please re-read to get the full understanding. As well, you may go to your car, get in, put on your seat belt and keeping your hands to your sides – please sit like this for at least 12 hours. Please also fart as often as possible. If unable to release the mighty wind, invite a friend or … maybe 50.
OK – I hope this enlightened you somewhat into what goes on behind the wall in our prison system and how federal prisoners are ferried using the diesel therapy sytem. Now, if you find yourself in the clutches and will need to report, or think you may be going to prison, please read my book, “Survive Prison or Jail” it has helped quite a few people. I used to give it out for free, but thanks to our economy, my company has closed it’s doors and I decided to take this time to mass produce this book now that 1 out of 150 of you will be spending some time inside.