Tuesday, August 5, 2014

Musings on the idea of time

Time is a funny thing in prison.  Today I was coming back from doing deliveries with Minion #2 and I saw a patron who had come into prison with pink hair that had blond roots. Since pink hair dye is not allowed in prison, I knew when I saw her that her hair growth would be a good indicator of how much time has passed since she got there. When I first met her, I thought her natural hair was blond but today I noticed that it's actually dark brown, creating a nice neapolitan effect.

Another way I measure time in prison is the handwriting on the forms we have to keep for a year. Once my old supervisor's handwriting disappeared from the pile, I knew it had been a long time since she worked there.

I have a great southern view from my library windows so the color of the leaves is another good reminder that time marches on. Fall is really pretty with all the colors in the trees. Winter is a frosty wonderland when it snows, and a brown wasteland in between the "winter surprises." Spring's renewal reminds us that nothing bleak is permanent and summer where we are now makes me long to be outside playing.

When you get your first job in prison, future prison librarians, you will frequently hear patrons say, "Wellllll it's been about a minute..." when you ask them how long it's been since they've put in their interlibrary loan request. A minute in prison can be anywhere from a few weeks to a few years. We always have to clarify if they are talking in terms of prison time.

Until next time! (I will try and make it less than a minute haha.)

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