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  • Writer's pictureKeir Templeman-Young

Similarities between Lockdown & Prison

Updated: Apr 16, 2020

This is a very tongue-in-cheek breakdown of how humans under unusual restrictions, adapt our approach to life, with very similar traits to that of a prisoner.

Neighbours: You speak to your neighbours more and exchange food and other contraband more than you usually would. Toilet roll for flour, eggs for alcohol gel. Even neighbours you usually don't communicate with become allies or foes.

Exercise: Time outside is precious, the feeling of the sun and fresh air, and the sudden importance of exercising intensely for that one hour. Just like in prison, many will resurface from this with improved physique.

Food: You have to queue to get it in a structured and policed process. There are limits to your purchases and food holds a higher degree of importance whilst meals become more structured and timely. You waste less.

Tension: Dependent on your block (neighbourhood) as we will call in it this blog; you may experience heightened tension between your neighbours, sometimes this tension may escalate to aggression.

Family: Speaking to family becomes more important, you see them less and so again you implement a more organised process of staying in contact with each other with scheduled calls.

Alcohol: Consumption increases to combat the sudden change in circumstances, consumption may also occur at any time of the day or any day of the week as time is meaningless. Some individuals will start brewing their own recipes to remain productive.

TV: You suddenly seem to have more channels than you did previously, and can watch shows at any time if the day, like prison experiencing clashes with friends/family (cellmates) over what to watch.

Noise: Your senses are heightened and as you are all confined in close proximity suddenly you hear all your neighbours all the time. You learn their habits and practices and tension may arise from this.

Reading: you either read a great deal more or start reading for the first time in a while, you read books and magazines and then recommend them to others, sharing segments or quotes to motivate friends through this time of duress.

Activities/skills: You engage with different activities or arts, maybe you start drawing or you want to learn to knit or you want to learn a language or new skill, whatever your calling, you invest time in development.

Appearance: Hair styles and facial hair change drastically, and hair cuts are done by cell mates or by yourself, often poorly. Attire consists of shorts, tracksuits and hoodies and nightwear and these are suddenly donned by those who scarcely wear them. They are also worn at all hours of the day.

Reflection: We look at and share pictures of friends and family, from better times.

Time: Stands still, becoming meaningless, weekends mean nothing to you any more.

Goals: Just like a prisoner, you set yourself goals for what you wish to achieve once you are finally free again.

In reality this is absolutely nothing like prison, but it bears some interesting comedic similarities. Hope you enjoyed this brief bit of entertainment emerging from solace. Learn more about us here.

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