Tuesday, March 8, 2011

Property Issues

I'm stealing this story from KP, just because it needs to be told and because I can get away with it. He's got better stories than I do, anyway.

Whatever an inmate has in his cell in the way of property is always documented one way or another. Any state issued clothing is listed in his file and they are all pretty much issued the same amount of shoes, pants, socks, t-shirts and etc. If most of the inmates are issued five pairs of pants and one inmate has nine pairs, then you know something is hinky.

Anything he owns himself as personal property is all supposed to be listed on another sheet. Personal clothing, shoes, appliances, jewelry, photo albums, cassette tapes or CD's.... All of that goes on his property sheet.

And it is all supposed to be marked with the offenders name and number. Any appliances they buy, like teevees, radios, CD players, alarm clocks, etc are supposed to be engraved with their name and number before they can take them back to the house.

Of course, being inmates, they have learned ways around the system. I've seen a few cases where someone heated up a sewing needle and etched another name in an item that looked just like somebody did it with the engraver. They got nothing but time and nothing to do with their time but figure out ways to beat the system. It's a sad statement, but it's true.

Inmates are not allowed to buy, sell, lend, borrow or transfer property of any kind at any time. Within humane limits, of course. You can loan a guy a pencil when he doesn't have one. But if you loan him your CD player because his is broken, you both might end up in trouble.

But then again, they find ways around that, too. You only get into trouble if you get caught. And nobody is going to be out there checking every name on every Walkman and comparing them with ID cards out on the yard or even in the house most of the time.

And personal clothing items are a hot commodity out on the yard. All of them want hooded sweat shirts (hoodies), yet they were banned back in '91. Only offenders who have been in prison since before 1991 are allowed to have them because they were already on their property sheet. So if you want one and you just got locked up, be prepared to pay for one. I've heard they are going pretty high since they are wearing out and getting scarce.

If you see an old head with a four digit number wearing a hoodie, then it's probably his. If you see some 19 year old punk with a seven or eight digit number with one, you can be pretty sure it's not on his list. Then it gets confiscated and he gets a violation for contraband and the hoodie goes to the landfill at the end of the month.

Sometimes being in fashion carries a stiff price.

Anyway.... where was I ? Oh yeah... Not being able to type. Argh.

The other night KP was up in the bubble with Walleye and the Menace when he looked up on the top walk of one of the wings and saw an inmate in front of his cell playing an air guitar. Just rocking out and jamming hard.

He brings it to the other guy's attention and they watch him for a minute in amusement. Then KP turns to the Menace (who is a real bug about ferreting out stolen or 'borrowed' property) and says "I wonder if that guitar is on his property list?" The Menace made a move like he was going to dig into the files for the list, but realized what KP had said and covered the move smoothly and replied "I dunno. Maybe you should check?" with that one raised eyebrow of his that said "You almost got me, smarta**."

And since they didn't have a Sergeant in the house, and KP being KP and not wanting a good joke to go to waste, called down to the 10 house Sarge and said "I have a property question."

Sarge said "Okay, shoot."

"If an inmate is in possession of an air guitar, where do they engrave his name and number?"

Luckily Sarge is no dumb bunny and said "Well, I don't know. I'll have to get back to you on that." and hung up.

The question, as of this writing, remains unanswered.

So Tuesday is both the beginning of Mardi Gras and is also Be Nasty Day and Aunts Day. If you have aunts like mine, I wouldn't try combining any of those three.

Most of my aunts would kick your a**.


  1. Well, it would go on the battery cover that they conveniently lost. Did I tell you I've got some Vacation time coming? I need it. I'm starting to think about trying to go back to the Hive on day shift.

  2. My two remaining aunts are too feeble to hurt me. And I recently realized I've been pretty nasty lately without having a special day for it. Not porno-nasty, but hateful-nasty.

  3. Really? People are worried about style in prison? Really? Aren't they all issued the same uniform? Why on earth would you want a 20 year old hoodie?

  4. Misty- I think they want the hoodie and whatever other personal things they can get their hands on specifically because it's NOT state issue.

  5. Drew- Sounds like you need a vacation and maybe some psychoanalysis.

    Donna- My aunts could play front four for the Green Bay Packers. And I can't see you being nasty. Negative, maybe. But not nasty.

    Misty- Young punks worry about style no matter where they are. Until they turn into old punks and then they just want to keep warm.

    Drew (again)- You are absolutely right.