It is a beautiful day in Southern California. On top of that, I’m lucky. I live in a nice quiet neighborhood. My dog, just picked up from the groomers, is napping next to me.
Pretty mundane, really. The thing is, my appreciation for the mundane has increased a ton since I became friends with Daniel.
Most of us have wondered: What is it really like in jail?
We’ve all imagined being in that person’s shoes.
Mental Note: When questioned by the police, always ask for a lawyer.
I ask Daniel a lot of questions about his day-to-day life in the OC Jail. He’s been there 5 years, so he has the ins and outs of the place wired.
Just like Daniel, most of the detainees are awaiting trial. Unlike Daniel, the majority are not in for high profile crimes.
People come and go often. It’s a good thing that he makes friends fast.
There’s Ray Ray, Little Brother Alfredo, Jessy, Chubs, J-Cat Mark (not a friend, but he’s been the topic of many an interesting story), “Z,” and Cole (AKA Ashton Colby Sachs, who is accused of murdering his wealthy parents and paralyzing his little brother), to name a few.
Daniel does not have a celly right now, though.
Daniel on Having a Celly
“high hopes for the kid. Due to my classification, all my cellies need to be approved through the ‘higher ups.’ I’m very selective on who I chose (sic) to associate with, let alone live with, and as of now, I’m in no immediate rush to find a celly.”
I admit he sounds a little snooty there, but who can blame him for not wanting to spend twenty three hours a day with a possible J-Cat?
An inmate’s cell is his sanctuary.
Also, no one wants to be sitting on a toilet when someone else is sleeping in a bed right next to you!
You don’t want to be the person on the toilet or the person on the bed. It’s a lose-lose.
He and his last celly got along well though. They kept different schedules. Daniel is a night owl (as am I), so he finds his quiet and privacy late at night when most everyone else is sleeping.
I think that would be one of the ways that I’d survive being locked up. Not that I’m planning to go to prison in the future.
My Little Freedoms
My cell is currently a 12×8 aquarium minus the water and cool toy treasure chests which spew out air bubbles… cheap bastards! :-) J/K The floors are concrete, but I installed carpeting (no joke). I have a small table and stool, a combination toilet and sink, a 7.5×3 single bed and a glass window that looks out into the dayroom area. I can see the TV (which is in the dayroom) from my cell, but I have difficulty hearing it. It’s mostly on Sports — I’m actually watching Notre Dame @ Florida State College Football Game now. I currently
I enjoy my little freedoms.
I have a door on my bathroom. My sink and my toilet are not a combined unit.
If I don’t like what’s on TV, I change the channel, or put on a DVD, or watch Netflix, or turn it off.
I listen to music. There aren’t any radios or music players allowed at the OC Jail. Imagine that the only time you can hear The Beatles is when someone sings a horrible cover of “Let it Be” on American Idol.
I can choose my own companions or I can choose to be alone (I do have two kids, so admittedly “alone time” is limited, but still…)
I can eat what I want, when I want (aside from the whole keeping thin and healthy business).
My vegetarian lifestyle is easily maintained. There are so many soy options available. I love smoothies. Fruit. Yogurt. Chia seeds. Protein powder. Sometimes I even add vodka.
I buy wine (and beer and vodka and tequila) at the store. I don’t have to make it in a toilet with contraband fruit.
I can binge on season three of Orange is the New Black and watch the characters make wine with contraband fruit.
I’m glad I’m not incarcerated.
Do I feel bad for Daniel? Do I feel sorry for him that he’s behind bars?
That’s a tough one.
I care about my friend and I want him to be happy.
But if Daniel was the cause of two people losing their lives, then it seems fair that he should lose his freedom.