JM: What types of facilities were available to help pass the time? Eric: The thing that was at Grand Traverse County Jail
to help you pass the time is other inmates.
Talking to other inmates and playing cards or
chess or other games is all there is to pass the
time. There is a few classes held downstairs that
I would always go to to get out of the cell, but
they are substance abuse classes and the like so,
they weren't for me.
JM: Did you have regular access to the entertainment or was competition fierce? Give details. Eric: Entertainment as far as the television was
annoying. Inmates that wanted to have control
would pick a channel and want to do as they
pleased. Others would want something, fights would
happen. It was a cell of 26 people with one tv. It
is impossible to make everyone happy. I gave up on
trying to get what I wanted to watch on and hoped
that I could just get enough people interested in
sports to get a game on.
JM: Did you have a hard time staying in shape while in jail? Eric: You can not stay in shape in the Grand Traverse
County Jail. Exercise is not allowed most of the
time, and you wouldn't want to if you could,
because of not wanting to stink up the place. Plus
the nutrition was not good. Unless you have a full
commissary account you absolutely will lose 10 or
more lbs a month at least.
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? Eric: There is no outside time at the Grand Traverse
County Jail. The only option is to go to the
recreation area, which happens once a week. In the
recreation area there is a glass roof that can be
opened. You are not allowed to do any exercise in
the cells by some officers and allowed by others.
It just depended on who was working and who caught
you. But to be honest, only having one change of
clothes for a week, to not make your clothes smell
musty, exercise didn't happen often.
JM: Did the jail offer church services? If so, what were they like and when were they held? Eric: The jail offered church services. They were pretty
often, about 3 or 4 times a week you could go.
Plus there was a walking set of gentleman who came
cell to cell to talk about God or whatever you
needed. The church was held in a regular classroom