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Leisure Time

Interview with Guero 1, Jim, Ricky, Bernard, Cora, Roy, Mario, Kayla and Evan

JM: What types of facilities were available to help pass the time?
Guero 1: tv and anyone could buy a radio, we played cards and chess and sometimes craps
Jim: nothing, tv, books, church
Ricky: Cards, tv's, chess, books and radio. During dayroom we played cards or watched tv. In your cell you can listen to the radio and draw or read a book or magazine. You can play board games with your cellie also or cards. Working out and sleepin are also option for passing the time.
Bernard: Not a whole lot. There is an AA group, a law library you can go to, and church. But it's only like once a week. You have to get as many books as you can in the pod, read them, sleep, read them some more, work out when you can.
Cora: We had 2 small TV's, a yard with a flat basketball and volleyball available (sometimes there would be a pump) and 2 short bookshelves full of books. Playing cards are available to purchase as are coloring pencils for those that like to draw. I mostly stacked up on books and read the entire time I was there.
Roy: Well when we had day room, we come out for 30 to 45 minutes to watch tv or play cards, and they usually have a small outdoor patio like, with a brick wall about 20ft in the air, but you can go out into it and see the sky,and excercise or run or just sit and talk. I usually did my physical fitness, with alot guy wanting to join me, running around and around this cement open space area doing 50 to 60 laps and many pushups.
Mario: We had free time to play basketball or reading watch some tv or play cards. We also could clean the cell block up. It may not sound like fun or a very good way to pass the time, but it did do just that. We could clean up the block go take a shower and sleep through the night.
Kayla: Books, church, TV, radios that you could buy on commissary, drawing and writing supplies from commissary, games, cards, and food from commissary. You could also sleep, exercise at certain times, talk at certain times, and you had routine chores to complete everyday. Boredom was frequent. I studied the bible a lot. i studied school subjects too.
Evan: In the tower, we only got 2 hrs. each day for 2 days a week only (during the week-ends) to go outside in the yard depending on the weather. If the weather was inclement, we weren't allowed out. There was only a basketball court outside plus two tables to sit at.

JM: Did you have regular access to the entertainment or was competition fierce? Give details.
Guero 1: well theres two tvs and 50 inmates on our floor so tv was hard to watch
Jim: could but it was more a hassle....better to stasy in your house
Ricky: Competition is fierce, but not enough that you can't do what you want to do. There are enough activities that if someone wants to do something then they won't have to wait long for their turn or there is something always available. Books are always available because they get passed on.
Bernard: In 2B we had a pretty good floor, we all took turns watching what we wanted, or at least deciding on something that we could all agree to watch. You only have tv when you're out of your dorm, which sometimes gets cut really short. You can only go outside once a week and it's only for an hour at a time. The only thing you can do there is walk, or play basketball, or work out.
Cora: Every now and then a fight would break out over the TV but for the most part it was accessible or negotiable to watch whatever you wanted. Most of the books are terrible so when there would be a few good ones people would start requesting them from the reader so lines would start but that wasn't a big deal either. As for the yard that was always open to anyone that wanted to use it.
Roy: Yes during day room we would watch TV, competition wasn't fierce because if it was, we would lose our day room privileges and get locked back into a 8 X 10 jail cell, so we all repected one onother and enjoyed what little entertainment that was offered. And it was a privilege and not a right.
Mario: There will always be some trouble when you have men from different ways of life and different life styles. One group would want to watch a sports program and the other would want to watch a movie. It would end up in a fight everynow and then but not all the time.
Kayla: competition was fierce for the TV or radios. Nobody cared about cards or board games. It was hard to get enough people to play a game. Gossip was free and common. fights were fun to watch. some people volunteered for extra chores just for something to do. some people passes the time by also only had access to entertainment at certain times.
Evan: Most of the time, we were able to agree on what was on T.V. during our day room time. At times, the competition did get intense and a few times came close to starting a fight. The conflict would get resolved by people backing down and letting it go. But everybody pretty much got along.

JM: Did you have a hard time staying in shape while in jail?
Guero 1: no i was in better shape in jail
Jim: heck yes...left fat from cookies!!!! Like 1 hour a week out in the yard....????????????
Ricky: No. As long as you can find work out buddies than it makes it easier to stay in shape and motivated.
Bernard: No. I worked out at night with my celly, most nights. We did push ups, sit ups, other work outs using the desk. You use what is available to do different work outs.
Cora: No but only because I didn't eat the food unless I absolutely had to. It is awful. As for the inmates that aren't able to leave for work over the 6 months I was there you could steadily watch the decline of their physique. The food is heavy on salt and preservatives very low on nutritional content. And there isn't much exercise to be had. Some girls tried to exercise on their bunks but they would be yelled at if caught.
Roy: Not me, I got in shape everytime, doing one of my Marine Corp daily excercise routines, and alot of inmates used to look foward to me hosting that. It kept the mind secure and the body fit.
Mario: No I never tried to. There were ways to stay in shape from walking the block or running around it.
Kayla: there's not enough room to move around, everyone gained a lot of weight even though were we always extremely hungry. there's also no motivation and everyone gained weight.
Evan: No. I chose to do push-ups while in my cell everyday I could. However, because I ate, slept and laid in my bed reading a lot I gained weight.

JM: How often did you get to go outside? What did you do outside if you were allowed to? If you were not allowed to go outside what could you do for exercise?
Guero 1: once a week
Jim: look at the last response
Ricky: They are twice a week for two hours. They are on Saturday and Sunday morning. Can play basketball or just get fresh air. Sit- ups, push-ups, pull-ups
Bernard: I pretty much already covered this in the entertainment section as getting to go outside is a wonderful feeling. To actually have the sun hitting your skin and the fresh air. You can't see anything while in your rooms, the windows are painted over in most places. All you can see when you're outside is a mountain. The jail is like built around the yard area so all you can see is a mountain. There is a toilet outside, 1 basketball hoop(I think) and a couple of picnic tables.
Cora: You can go outside during your free time and only until 8pm. You can sit and read or talk or shoot hoops or play volleyball. The 'yard' was very small so other than that some girls would try to walk the perimeter to get exercise but nobody is concerned whether you get any or not.
Roy: None other that that small space with the 20 ft brick wall and and open roof to see only Gods blue sky and clouds. That was better that being in a cell all day.
Mario: I could not go outside so I stayed in and read a lot of books and wrote alot also for myself and for other inmates.
Kayla: i got to go outside once a day if i was lucky in jail. in prison i was allowed outside all the time, it kept me sane there.
Evan: I got to go outside 2 times daily on the week-ends only. When we were outside, there was a basketball court. You could run or walk laps and do push ups on the ground.

JM: Did the jail offer church services? If so, what were they like and when were they held?
Guero 1: they offered but im not a religous person so i wouldn't kno whow they were
Jim: yes they did and it was/is a good thing
Ricky: Yes. Sundays. A lot of singing. They were of Christian faith and had two seperate one. One for english speakers and one for spanish.
Bernard: Yes, the jail offered church services. I do not know what they were like as I did not attend, but I do know they were held once a week.
Cora: They do but I never attended. There is a chaplin that came in about once or twice a week and brought in religious books or material to be checked out then they would pray with those that wanted to. Other than that there was a Catholic and non-denominational service held once a week and they would take any girls interested to another room for that.
Roy: Yes every week a chaplain and someone like a volunteer would usually host a service, sometimes diferrent denominations would come all through the week, and have services in an allocated space, usually a small room, with many folding chairs. That was to me the best service offered while in a County Jail facility.
Mario: No Pima county jail did not offer church servies. They did have people come in and pass out books and stuff.
Kayla: we had all kinds of church for christians and maybe one jewish service. there were a lot of god-based anonymous programs too.
Evan: Yes, the jail did offer church services. They were held once per week for each pod. the services varied by which pastor volunteered that week.

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