Friday, October 15, 2010

Prison - Worse, Better and Different Than What You Might Imagine

At least according to this guy, who Marginal Revolution linked. Like I'd have any clue!

(be warned, some of it is pretty gruesome, but all of it is interesting)

Some samples of bits that surprised me:
An old timer told me that when he first went inside, in the 80s, prison was all about cliques. There were different gangs, people stuck together because of ethnicity, even religion. Back then there were Irish Catholic cliques, Nation of Islam cliques - even white collar guys started cliques to avoid getting stepped on. 
One thing the boss' do very well is create an atmosphere of constant paranoia. If you get shaken down and you get contraband found on you, they'll stick you in solitary and finger your best friend for setting you up. If you come inside with a pre-existing gang affiliation, like a lot of black guys do, they start by stepping on your friends straight away and blaming you for it until you're a pariah. Forget about the yard being full of big groups of guys chilling together. No one hangs with anymore than three people for a stretch. If you're seen with a big group, you'll be targeted by the screws. Mostly, people do their time alone. Pacing the yard, or even just ignoring their cell mates completely. 
That gets to you more than anything. The constant suspicion, and knowing you're alone.

This is a minor relief, as I'd always imagined that if I ever found myself in prison, I wouldn't be good at fitting into any kind of gang (other than the 'skinny white guys' gang, which is to say, the easy targets). I'm getting my @$$ beat either way, but at least they'll be coming in smaller groups.

What did you miss most about sex while inside? Just the sex itself or the intimacy? I know there are cliches on both sides about that so I was wondering what your thoughts were.
You know how a lot of people that hang around these boards will say how they're desensitised to sexuality? How years of the most twisted porn the Internet's underbelly can offer has made them numb? I guess I was like that going in. If you had have asked me, the day before I went inside, what my ultimate sexual fantasy was I'd have said something stupid like 'Emma Waton, a rubber tube, two mexican fighting fish, a chainsaw and a bucket of grease'. 
Now, I s*** you not, my answer would more likely be 'a beautiful woman that loves me'. 
Every convict has a jack bank. Scraps of magazines, smuggled porn, that kind of thing. I used to keep mine under the inner sole of my sneaker. If you took a survey of what convicts keep in their jack bank, you'd be shocked to learn that mostly, it's women's faces. The single most sought after item in the common area was the TV guide. Because you'd get full page ads for movies and beautiful women.  
Huh. Interesting. Not what I would have imagined, but I'd definitely believe it.

 Read the whole thing. Most fascinating piece I've read in the past month.

No comments:

Post a Comment