JM: Did you find it difficult to get along with other inmates? Please give examples to explain why you did or didn't. Tyrone: This was my very first experience being admitted
into a jail. I was placed into a dormitory-style
jail that accomodated 30 inmates, and it was
full. There were no issues that I recall with
the other inmates. I was 48 years old at the
time, and that gave me OG status. (OG actually
stands for ORIGINAL GANGSTER and is a tag put
onto older inmates) That status alone meant I
was "off limits" to the younger inmates who may
have had "something to prove" while in house.
Actually, I made several acquaintences there
that lasted past the jail stay.
JM: What types of things did you have to do to avoid problems or fights with other inmates? Tyrone: I basically just kept to myself by hanging with
the other non-affiliated (with gangs) OGs/ We
played cards, watched television and conversed
about our individual cases. I was "taught" to
simply not make much eye contact with those who
were obviously involved in the politics of the
jailhouse gangs. I followed that advice and it
worked, for the most part anyway.
JM: Were you able to choose an inmate as your cellmate if you knew one? How often would your cellmate(s) change? Tyrone: I was never offered that opportunity, but I knew
of others who were friends on the outside and
they would request being cellmates and were
granted that luxury. I had several cellmates
come and go during my stay...I would guess five.
These were ones who were awaiting their
transportation to the state penitentiary. They
would arrive and then leave within five days or
so, so for the most part, I was alone in my cell.