An inmate was counting the remaining days to his or her release from prison. The inmate wanted to share the good news with another or a bunk buddy. Any inmate with common sense would have told this inmate to keep the crucial information completely private. “Orange is the New Black” explored this rule of prison survival in its final episode of season three.
During season three of the hit prison series, Piper has started a new business inside prison selling inmate’s panties to men in the outside world. At the same time, she has begun a new romantic entanglement with Stella, another inmate. Stella also helped Piper with her crazy business scheme.
In the finale of season three, Piper has learned from her brother that Piper’s money from the profitable panties business was stolen from her account. Someone in the prison had obtained Piper’s account information.Piper is also distressed upon learning from Stella about Stella’s upcoming release.
After Piper has suspected other inmates of stealing her money,she realized in a confrontation with Stella that Stella took Piper’s money. Stella tearfully told Piper that she needed the money since she did not have any support for herself in the outside world. It appears that Piper has forgiven Stella for her betrayal.
Finally, Stella’s cell was searched on the morning of her release.The correctional officers discovered drugs, a shank, and a cell phone in her bunk and possessions. Stella cried to the officers that she would not have any illegal contraband, when she was being released that very morning. Confused, she turned her head, saw Piper smiling in the hallway, and she realized that Piper planted the contraband as revenge for Stella stealing Piper’s money. Stella was led away by the correctional officers to face new charges.
Stella should never have told Piper about her upcoming release date. During my second week of imprisonment, I had the good fortune of meeting a Russian inmate in state prison.The Russian inmate had experienced Russian and American prisons. He was very knowledgeable about how to survive prison. He told me,”Never discuss your release date with other inmates. You never know how they will take it. Another inmate could be resentful about his long sentence ,or just mad at you for any reason. Out of revenge or just meanness,he could plant some drugs in your cell and tell the guards. Goodbye release!”
Many of the “The 25 Basic Rules How to Survive Prison and Jail” were based on the advice that I received from the Russian inmate. His advice not to discuss your release date was part of rule 12.
By: Bradley Schwartz
Founder of prisonpath.com