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Leisure Time

Interview with Ben

JM: What types of facilities were available to help pass the time?
Ben: TV, cards, chess, checkers. These things were available to everybody. Inmates are given unsolved crime cards (face cards)and get a reward if they can help solve a crime on the back of the card. We called them "snitch cards". Basketballs were available for rec time. Rec time was once a week on Saturdays.

JM: Did you have regular access to the entertainment or was competition fierce? Give details.
Ben: When I was in there it was football season, and in jail, sports rule. If sports are on, that is what you will be watching. I saw a couple fights over the TV but it was over which game they wanted to watch.

JM: Did you have a hard time staying in shape while in jail?
Ben: No, I weighed about 300 lbs when I went in, but when I got out I was about 260. I didn't like the food so I hardly ate it. I would buy commissary food. I ate once a day, and while I was watching TV I would walk around the pod for exercise.

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?
Ben: When I was on work pod I got to go outside everyday.

JM: Did the jail offer church services? If so, what were they like and when were they held?
Ben: I never went to church. It was held every Wednesday. There were 5 different churches and you had to sign up to go.

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