New year may make hard time a bit softer

January 01, 1998|By KEVIN COWHERD

NEWS ITEM: A number of U.S. prisons plan to be more 'inmate-friendly' in 1998.

Inmate schedule, U.S. Penitentiary, Leavenworth:

7 a.m.: Rise and shine! (optional)

7: 15-7: 20: "Good morning from Warden Hawkins!" News 'n' notes. (PA system)

7: 30: "Tai Chi with Crazy Ike." Pagans gang leader "Crazy Ike" Morris leads inmates in centuries-old discipline of harmonizing body and mind. Today's movements: White Crane Spreading Wings, Parting the Wild Horse's Mane. (Exercise Yard)

8: Breakfast. Fresh muffins, orange juice, melon slices, eggs, pancakes prepared by Chef Wilfredo, formerly of New York State Correctional Facility at Ossining (Sing-Sing.)

9: "Hey, Why So Blue?" Lifers discuss prison violence, sexual assault, ritual degradation, sadistic guards, unappealing food, mail censorship, solitary confinement and why they occasionally get down. (Cellblock B)

9: 30: "I Love What You've Done With This Place!" Tips on decorating your cell from Steven W. Collingstone, one of the country's top interior designers. Tomorrow: "Are Curtains and a Matching Border Too Much?"

10: "Chillin' with Raheem." Inmate Raheem Williams, who has elected not to participate in the work program, invites brothers of all races and creeds to "chill" and watch "Sally Jessy Raphael" with him. (Cellblock C)

11: "Let's Lift Weights!" A great way to stay in shape, a great way to socialize! This week: bench press techniques of the Aryan Resistance Movement. (Exercise Yard)

Noon: Lunch. Try our new mesquite-grilled chicken, or stop by our calorie-conscious pasta bar!

1 p.m.: "Quien Es Mas Macho?" Hispanic inmates meet and chat in their native tongue to annoy non-Spanish-speaking cons. (Cellblock E)

1: 30: "Harvard, Schmarvard: Graduate from Big House U!"

Time on your hands for the next 15 to 20 years? Earn a degree in accounting, macro-economics, forensic science, aerospace engineering and more via correspondence courses from some of the most prestigious universities in the country!

Short-timers: Ask about our accelerated residency program that can have you practicing medicine in many Third World countries in just 90 days! Become fully qualified to remove a gall bladder (Peru only) in one week! (Orientation in Cellblock D)

2: "Can't We All Get Along?' Modern techniques for conflict resolution.

Today's beef: China Red thinks Eddie the Rat stole a pack of Salems from his cell. Old approach: Stick a shiv in Eddie when he's in the shower. Modern approach: Take him aside privately and say: "I am very disappointed in your behavior, mister, I really am." Offer various options as to how Eddie can regain your trust. Guest lecturer: Latrell Sprewell. (Gymnasium)

2: 15: Snack time! Bagels, cookies, fresh fruit cart in each cellblock. Cost: 25 cents. (Note: Remember, gentlemen, we're on the "honor system." Although 1,300 inmates avail themselves of our snack cart daily, to date we have collected just $2.43. We rely on your good faith!)

3: Leavenworth Book Club meets! This week we discuss: "Montel: My Life in Front of the Camera." (Cellblock A)

4: "Let's Play Basketball!" A great way to stay in shape, a great way to socialize! Court 1: Bloods vs. Crips. Court 2: White inmates play H-O-R-S-E. (Gymnasium)

5: Free time!

5: 30: More free time, if you need it!

6: Dinner. Remember: Monday is "Swordfish Steak Night!"

7: "It Could Be Worse!" Death Row cons offer inspirational stories on living in the here and now.

7: 30: Bruce Lee Film Festival! Join your friends for "Eye of the Tiger" and "Eye of the Tiger II: Rip His Lungs Out" as everyone's favorite screen idol kills 476 heavily armed men with his bare hands. Coming soon: Jackie Chan Film Festival. (Gymnasium)

10: 30: "How're We Doing?" Please take a moment to fill out the questionnaire under the mint left on your bunk. Kudos? Gripes? We want to know what you think!

11: Lights out! (optional)

Pub Date: 1/01/98

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