Lifes A Joke : chapter III

INDIVIDUAL: Agent Vurmin
GROUP SIZE: Approx. 56 Million
NATURE OF GROUP: The people of the state of California Vs. Charles Twain Clemans
INCIDENCE OF SOCIOMETRY: Life’s a Joke : chapter III

Backstory: Life’s a Joke : chapters I & II 

This report was originally published on a tri-fold display at Sociometry Fair 2008 in Chicago. These teenage Bridgeport chicanas were drawn to his display like moths to a bright light.


Agent Vurmin is a screen-printer by trade. In 1995 he taught is how to make stickers in his garage. As detailed in chapter I, we’re holding a first run “I’ve Been Institutionalized” bumper sticker to present to agent Vurmin upon his release from prison in 2023. In the interim, is tries to smuggle graphic art to agent Vurmin through the mail. 

As detailed in section 3138 of the California Code of Regulations Title 15. Crime Prevention and Corrections manual regarding mail, “all incoming packages and mail addresed to an inmate will be opened and inspected… to prevent the introduction of contraband. In some cases “contraband” is obvious. When Agent Vurmin hand drew all the is agent birthday cards in 2006 they were sent out with a small file/shank in a handsome plastic sleeve custom imprinted with Get Out of Jail *FREE*. That would be an item warranting  confiscation. So agent Vurmin did not receive a gift in the mail. What’s a little more subtle is the need to remove the staples from agent Vurmin’s birth day card so he can’t straighten them, embed them in an eraser and shank a guard in the eye.

Books can only be sent from the bookstore. Inmates can receive pictures in the mail, but only up to 10 and no Poloroids (their rigidity apparently leads to shanking.) Stickers, agent Vurmin’s most cherished accouterment of the civilian world, are expressly prohibited. Once applied to the surface of envelopes stickers magically transform from contraband to packaging and typically slide through.

Unfortunately the piece pictured here didn’t make it to agent Vurmin. The mail was returned with “No Stickers” scrawled across from it. In the type of paradox generated by the pursuit of bureaucracy over logic, these 8×10 glossies of agent Vurmin’s returned mail caused no concern and now decorate his concrete cube.




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