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Home Katfish KatFish Blog Convict Catchwords/ Prison Patois/ Jailhouse Jargon, Part 1
Convict Catchwords/ Prison Patois/ Jailhouse Jargon, Part 1 PDF Print E-mail
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Written by Katfish   
Tuesday, 30 March 2010 01:06

Recently I wrote my girlfriend in Colorado a letter in which I employed many standard words I use every day as I speak with convicts and guards alike. I've been down this time for over six years, so prison speak is second nature to me. Turns out my gf didn't understand half my wording. Thus with that in mind I wrote out a list of the most often used catchwords and/or phrases. I imagine this has been done before. Doesn't matter, I'm doing it again and in depth. I even alphabetized it. So there.


Bricks: This refers to being out of prison; ie "When I hit the bricks...."or, "Man, when I was out on the bricks....."



Books: This refers to books of stamps. (20 stamps) And even though as book of stamps costs (at the time of this writing) $8.80 at the commissary, you can "buy" one on the yard for $6.00. "books" are a prison yards hard currency. At a convict store one can buy commissary items for stamps. (i.e. 3 stamps will get you a honey bun. 2 stamps can purchase one Pepsi.) Multiple books are the standard bets for hard gamblers. It’s not uncommon for some gung ho guard to snoop in and confiscate 100 books. If the convict whose stamps were confiscated chooses not to squawk about the loss, then there is usually no report (shot) involved. 100 books at the U.S. post office equals $880.00!! On the yard 100 books still equals $600.00! What happens to these “confiscated” stamps has been hotly debated among convicts. The majority of opinions fall in two camps. Some say the Poe steal them, take them home, then go cash them in at the post office. Others say the Poe use the confiscated books to pay the “rats” off with. My opinion is different and is irrelevant.



Cap: This refers to a cap of marijuana. Listen, I quit smoking weed in the 90’s (It makes me paranoid like a motherfucker- I hate that shit) But once upon a time ago, one bought weed by the “matchbox”. This went for $30.00. Now it is sold by the “cap” A cap being a toothpaste cap filled with stinkweed. I’ve seen this shit go for over $100.00. For serious, dude.



Cell Soldiers: This refers to the Kats who spend most of their time in their cells. They are usually shy, withdrawn or scared. Some cell soldiers are simply readers and elect to stay on their bunk with a book. I spent the majority of three years on my bunk in Big Dump writing my book.


Check In Move: This is where an inmate knows he is in physical danger from other convicts for whatever reason. Simply checking in proves he is a coward, so many of these check-ins will instead start a fight with another inmate in front of a guard. It gets him into the hole where he’s safe. But trust me; real convicts know a check in move when they see one.



Drive by: To walk casually by a group of convicts and let loose with a sneak fart. The BOP feeds convicts A LOT A LOT of beans. “Drive bys” are common. (“Silent but deadly” mean anything to you?)



Fifi: This is an amusing name for some type of convict fashioned devise used to stimulate pussy. For serious, dude. I’ve heard tales of cantaloupes having a hole bored into them, a piece of saran wrap tucked into said hole, and the penis then stuck in as the convict “fucks” it. Eyes tightly closed while he fantasizes about whomever. The convict mind can be pretty creative at fashioning “Fifis”. Gloves, baggies filled with warm water, old pillows. If you can think up some kind of Fifi, chances are so has a convict.



Hard in the Paint: This refers, literally, to the paint on the floor of the basketball court; more specifically the paint under the hoop. Convicts say “hard in the paint” when they’re trying to establish how seriously they interacted in any given situation. Eg; “Duane did 30 pull-ups, but I had to do 35 just to show him who’s king. I went hard in the paint.”



Hard left: This is usually used to describe someone who is an over-reactor. We’ve all done this, reacted illogically to something, anything. Another way to put this is going “hard left” is the same as having momentary lapse of reason.








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Last Updated on Monday, 05 April 2010 00:18