JM: What types of facilities were available to help pass the time? Charlie: There is a tiny “legal library” with about 300
paperback books where inmates can request to go.
Haircuts, given by trustees or other inmates, are
done in the library as well. Commissary is sold
twice a week and inmates can use any money on
their “books” to purchase snack foods, hygiene
items, underclothing, and small entertainment
items such as puzzle books and playing cards.
Church is usually held on Sunday in the exercise
yards. All inmates can go to their exercise yard
(one for males and one for females) for recreation
twice a week; the only sports equipment available
therein is a tennis ball to bounce against the
walls. And as I mentioned before, there is a TV
set in each tank. Don: none Pierce: Church and wreck yard. We played hand ball out
in the wreck yard. That was always fun. Some
guys made transactions with food and things to
get drawings, or things of that sort.
JM: Did you have regular access to the entertainment or was competition fierce? Give details. Charlie: Except for disciplinary cases, all inmates have
equal access to recreation. But as I mentioned
before, the choice of TV channel in the tanks is
governed by the “tank boss” (longest-serving or
baddest inmate) in that particular tank. Don: competition Pierce: My tank was easy going so all was well there. I
was locked up in Kerrville Tx and the guys there
would say it is BET all day in here. Thats all
JM: Did you have a hard time staying in shape while in jail? Charlie: Yes. Most inmates put on a considerable amount of
weight in jail due the highly starch-based food.
Don: yes Pierce: No I worked out as much as possible
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? Charlie: Never. Don: never Pierce: Every weds or thurs. I forget which day.
JM: Did the jail offer church services? If so, what were they like and when were they held? Charlie: Yes. Church is held on Sundays in the exercise
yards. Volunteer pastors from the community come
in and minister to the inmates. Those inmates in
isolation cells can request that a pastor be
brought to their cell for ministration but they
are not allowed out of their isolation cell for
church. The jail accepts donations of Bibles and
religious study material for dissemination to inmates. Don: yes 2 times a week in the gym Pierce: Yes! It was a blessing. Brother Ernest and
Brother Bud use to come and preach to us. Some
guys would come for church and others would come
to socialize as there were alot of relatives and
friends amongst them. Brother Ernest came from a
street back groung and was realeased after
looking at a lot of time. He brought the word
like it was serious business. I then also gave
my life to God from the first service I went to.