THE TURNAROUND: A TRUE STORY OF CRIME, PRISON AND REDEMPTION
In The Turnaround Gerald Farmer graphically describes his youthful descent into the "thug-life" on the streets of Camden, NJ, aided and encouraged by his father and uncle; his 12-year odyssey through the New Jersey correctional system starting with the reformatory at Jamesburg and working his way up to Trenton State Prison; his spiritual journey toward redemption, sidetracked when he commits "justifiable homicide"; and his efforts today to mentor "mind-blind" young men away from a life of robbing, stealing and dealing.
In Chapter 20, Farmer describes a confrontation with a group of inmates in 2-wing at Trenton State Prison:
Several moments later the inmate I had confronted in the school area appeared almost magically with four other convicts. They quickly formed a semi-circle around me and Louden. We instinctively positioned our backs to the wall behind us.
"Remember me, Cool Muthafucka?"
I inhaled a slow, deep breath as though I'd found myself suddenly facing a deadly snake. I locked gazes with the vengeful eyes beneath the bushy eyebrows and exhaled slowly.
"I'm here to listen you talk some more of that shit you was talkin' a little earlier up in the school," he hissed.
"I thought this was settled already." My voice was deliberate, determined to show no fear, not daring to show animosity.
"Naw! It ain't settled," he snarled. "But it's about to get settled, Cool Muthafucka!"
In spite of his threat he stayed just out of punching range. His right hand was cupped at his side, partially hidden beneath the long sleeve of a green army coat. His four henchmen maintained their wide semi-circle formation. I vaguely recognized some of the hostile faces who sided with my new enemy. They were all wearing thick prison-issue army coats . . . buttoned up, on a warm October night. It only took a glance to see the faint square outlines of thick magazine catalogues bulging beneath the green material.
All the preparations for a knife fight.