When I was still in college, I went to prison. Actually, it’s not what you think. I was there as part of a special program that was similar to Scared Straight, but without much of the yelling and insulting.
Anyways, a group of five inmates were there, and one of them – a big black guy who was once a Mob hit man – told us that we couldn’t put our elbows on the visitor’s tables and asked us why. I guessed that they held some sort of religious significance to the inmates. He said I was pretty close and told us about what they meant. He pointed to one table and said that it was the exact same table where he saw his mother for the very last time.
When I heard that, I tried not to cry. Prior to this day, I had several thoughts about killing people and figured there was a good possibility that I might actually do it. Because of what this inmate told me, I vowed never to kill anybody except in self-defense. I also vowed to tell my Mom that I love her every chance I got.