The Correctional Officers Guide to Prison
the length of the Prison Slang Guide it will be offered in three parts.
Look for parts two and three in the upcoming weeks.
- (plea bargain); When an inmate is convicted of a crime they sometimes refer to
their sentences as if they had bartered with the judge (i.e. "The Judge
wanted to give me 20 years but I wouldn't accept that, all I would accept is
5.") meaning they would have fought the case and possibly received 20
years but plead guilty in exchange for 5 years.
(Agricultural tool); A tool used in field work commonly called a hoe (garden
AGGRAVATED - (to
get); Inmates often use the word aggravated to mean mad possibly give the
impression that they are educated.
AGITATOR - An inmate
who manipulates other inmates into fights normally for the pure enjoyment of
watching the other inmates fight.
- A term commonly used by inmates to mean that they fear a certain area, person,
or to indicate that they have caused someone to fear them or their area i.e.
("You can't bar me." "You're barred from my cell.")
BEAN SLOT - An opening in the cell doors of most segregation areas which
is used to place handcuffs on the inmate prior to opening the cell, or to
deliver the food tray to the inmate without having to open the cell door.
BLUE BAG - A bag of Maxwell house instant coffee, often used for trading
in place of money.
BONE- A term often used by inmates meaning to be the dominant partner
(male role) in the performance of sodomy.
BONG - (cooker); A device made by inmates to cook water for food or
coffee in the event they don't have a stinger, or hot pot. It is made by
wrapping a large amount of toilet paper around something such as a can, then
folding in the top and bottom creating a doughnut shape. The inside of the
bong is then lit and allowed to burn slowly as a can is held slightly above the
flame until it is brought to a boil.
BOSS - A term used extensively by inmates to refer to officers working
as guards (Correctional Officers), this began in the early years of
penitentiaries as "Sorry son of a bitch" backwards. Most of the
inmates that are now incarcerated are not aware of this and the term is accepted
by officers as a sir name.
BOUGHT- (hog); A term used to mean that a story, normally one that is
not true has been believed. (i.e. "He bought that hog.")
BROGAN - The state issued work boots that inmates wear.
BULL-DERM - Prior to 1987, inmates were given free tobacco that was
provided by the RJR tobacco company, a popular brand used to be Bull Durham.
This came to be known as Bull-derm (derm meaning feces) or "Run johnnie
run," to the older convicts. This term has more recently been used to
describe any very low grade of tobacco.
BURNED - When an inmate has caused another to see his penis either by
accident or on purpose, you are said to have been burned.
- A. (job); Any job that is perceived to be either easy or enjoyable is
considered to be a Cadillac job.
B. (tractor); Inmates that are assigned as tractor drivers often refer to
their tractors as Cadillacs.
CAKE - (easy); Any thing that is easy to accomplish or jobs that
are easy to perform. (i.e. "That's a cake job.")
CAT HEAD - On some units housing older convicts, biscuits or rolls
are often called cat heads, the origin of this word is not know, but it is
believed that they were referring to the fact that a cat's head is very hard, as
are the rolls.
CANTON - (Hisp. House) Hispanic inmates call their cells their
CARNAL - (Hisp. Brother) Hispanic inmates, normally gang members
often refer to other inmates of that same gang as carnals.
CASE - A disciplinary report written on an inmate for a rule
infraction, derived from court case.
CAT - (job); (See CADILLAC)
CATCH A PAIR - A term used by correctional officers to instruct a
group of inmates to stand in pairs for count or control purposes.
CATCH OUT - Any person whether it be an inmate or officer, that
could not handle the pressure of any area, and left for this reason.
CELL WARRIOR - An inmate that is continually making threats or
ethnic remarks while in the safety of his/her cell, but will remain quiet or
very polite while outside of the cell.
CELLIE - A cellmate.
CHAIN - A term meaning that an inmate is leaving (catching the
chain) or the bus used to carry inmates (chain bus).
CHECK(ED) - When one person had scolded another person and the
person that has been scolded fails to, or is afraid to make a rebuttal, that
person is said to have been checked. If one person continually allows the
other to scold him/her without making a rebuttal that person is said to be in
CHALK - A crude wine made from yeast, sugar, rice or fruit and
CHOW - Any meal is referred to as chow. Meal time is
referred to as chow time.
CHO CHO - Ice cream.
CLAVO - (Hisp. Contraband); A Hispanic term for any type of
dangerous contraband, i.e. weapons.
CLIQUE - Any group of people that use their numbers as strength,
or any time one person is ganged up on or beat up by a large group of people,
that person is said to have been cliqued on. (Also spelled Click).
COP - (plea); When an inmate confesses to doing something wrong
they say that they "copped to it", when they accept a sentence they
say they "copped a plea".
CROSSED OUT - When a person is taken from a good area, job, etc.
for something they claim not to have doen, or for something that they don't feel
they should have been blamed for, they say they were "crossed out".
CUT YOUR EYES - Meaning that a person has looked at another person
or the items they have through the sides of their eyes, normally thought of as
an intent to steal the items or start a fight.
- The performance of anal sex between two homosexual inmates.
DAP - A greeting or way of congratulating another, by pounding the
bottom of one persons fist to the top of the others.
DEAD - (killed); When an inmate has masturbated while looking at
another, the person that has been masturbated on is said to be dead.
DECK (OF SQUARES) - A pack of cigarettes.
DOBIE - A biscuit or roll, derived from the word adobe (brick).
DOG - (road); What an inmate often calls his friends, the closest
friend is often referred to as a road dog.
DOWN - (time #); A term in prison, i.e. "How many times have
you been down?"
DROPPED - (get); When an officer forcibly wrestles an inmate to the
ground to be restrained.
D-TOWN -Dallas, Texas
DUNGEON - Punitive segregation, or solitary confinement, where an inmate
is placed to serve a sentence for no more than 15 days as the result of being
convicted of a disciplinary offense.
- (Hisp.); A Hispanic inmate, as they are normally called by most white, or
black inmates, and occasionally by other Hispanic inmates.
EYEBALL - When someone is staring at your or your things they are said
to be eyeballing you.
- A. (from); The county the inmate was convicted in "Where did you fall
B. (partner); The
person, if any, that fell from the same county for the same crime is considered
a "Fall Partner".
FAT BACK - Meaning that a person has a big butt.
FIEND('N) - A person that is addicted to drugs is called a
fiend. When that person is begging or in dire need of the drugs including
cigarettes the person is said to be fiend'n.
FISHING POLE - A device made from rolled up newspaper or other
paper, with a paper clip in one end, used for retrieving items from the runs in
front of their cells.
FISHING LINE - Made from torn sheets or string, having a weighted
object tied to one end and used to throw down the run to inmates in other cells
to pass items.
FIX UP - To give an inmate more food on his tray than the other
inmates are receiving, or to do an inmate a special favor that the other inmates
will not receive. "Fix me up."
FLAT WEED - A. (agriculture); To chop grass with a garden hoe,
chopping away everything down to the dirt.
B. (fight); To lose a fight badly is to get "Flat-weeded", inmates
often use this term to mean they were wrestled down by officers. (Also see
FLICK - (flix); A photograph, or picture torn from a magazine.
FLIP FLOP - When two homosexual inmates take turn playing the male
or female roles.
FRAJO - A term used by Hispanic inmates meaning a cigarette.
FREE WORLD - A. (cigarette); A term meaning any commercial
cigarette, as opposed to the roll your own type that used to be bought by
inmates prior to the tobacco free environment, due to its inexpensive cost.
B. (outside); Life outside of the prison, "When I was in the free
world." also called the world.
FUNKY - An inmate that does not shower.
American Federation of State, County and Municipal Employees
4400 Buffalo Gap Road, Suite 2300
Abilene, Texas 79606