Like the changing of the seasons, I find myself newly intrigued by something weird, criminal and unlikely to happen to me: federal prison. Something about disgraced Illinois Governor Rod Bla-whatever's checking into 12 years in the clink fascinates me. He strut into that place with great fanfare, apparently he high-fived fellow inmates his first dinner in the cafeteria, and he has a top bunk. GRIPPING.
Because this guy isn't doing the Martha Stewart 9-month stint that provides a little humity and street cred in the Hamptons. Rod is looking at well over a decade. The high-fives will subside... well, right about now.
So I was putzing around on the Englewood Federal Prison's website and came across the list of items available for purchase in the commisary. The combination of weird prison stuff PLUS shopping is almost too much for me to even handle.
Unless you are the most boring person in the world, you will find THIS fascinating.
I could share my wonder, awe, and/or confusion with every single item on this list. But for the purposes of keeping this under 537562384789347 words, I will select three:
1. Garlic, Minced: $0.85: Unless federal prison is exactly like it is depicted in Goodfellas, who needs minced garlic and for what weird jail-cell recipe? Don't they have to eat all of their meals in the dining hall anyway? Wouldn't commisary food just be for snacking? Is their a secret jailcell cookbook using items exclusively from this list? How do you learn what to make? Is there Tony on F Block who knows all the good combinations, and how you can really jazz up some Cheetos or "meat pouches" with a little 85 cent thing of minced garlic? Minced garlic! I can't get over it.
2. Conditioner - Infusium 23: $7.65: First of all, this is a rip-off, unless we're talking a Costco-sized bottle of conditioner. But whatever, they're criminals, they shouldn't get deals on conditioner. Wait. Why do they get conditioner at all? If they have three different kinds of "Hair Grease" and two different kinds of "Hair Care", why do they only have one expensive conditioner and one cheap one (Suave, for a reasonable $1.65)? Is there a whole weird prison hair-culture? Do certain hairstyles, which I assume involve a lot of "grease", mean certain things? Is it like the teardrop tattoo? Does having bangs mean you killed someone?
3: Cereal, Honey Nut Scooters: $4.00: What are Honey Nut Scooters and do I have to go to prison to get them. Honey Nut Scooters sound amazing...
Needless to say, I want most of this stuff (tennis balls! Sween 'n Spicy Mix! shower shoes!), but I have so many questions. Is it like a gift shop in the lobby? Who works behind the counter? Is shoplifting an issue? So, so many questions...