Wild Man Makes Prison Hooch

Wild Man – My large and fearless raving partner from my hometown. One of the main characters in my jail memoir. He looked out for me in the jail when we first went in. Sentenced before me, he ended up having various adventures in the prison system.

In Wild Man’s previous story, he arrived in the prison system from the jail system, and immediately smashed the head of the whites in his dorm. The Aryan Brotherhood made Wild Man the new head of the dorm, and authorised him to brew hooch.

“What are the ingredients for hooch?” I asked Wild Man.
“You get fifty oranges, five pounds of sugar, and yeast from the kitchen,” Wild Man said.
“Of course.”
“Can you tell the public how that is all stolen from the prison kitchen?”
“For the oranges, I had youngsters use socks. You get a sock, put a hole in it, get a four-inch-long piece of string and tie the sock to your boxer shorts. You put five oranges in each sock. One in five youngsters will get stopped coming out of the chow hall, but that’s a necessary sacrifice. The most the guards do is say, ‘Throw those oranges away, and stop being stupid.’”
“How about the sugar?”
“The baker in the kitchen has access to a good amount of sugar. I tell him I’ll give him five bottles of hooch for five pounds of sugar, two big bags basically. He puts it all in cling-film, which he makes the size of sausage rolls. Before the chow hall opens, he tapes it under the tables where the heads of the whites and their torpedoes [goons] sit. If you look under the tables, you’ll see it, but for the naked eye there’s nothing there. When the heads walk in, the white boys give the heads hugs, and generally creep up their arses, meanwhile the torpedoes are grabbing the sugar and passing it to the youngsters. The youngsters have on really baggy pants. Now nine times out of ten, the guards will pat you down for weapons going into the chow hall, but not when you’re walking out. It takes a week to get all the stolen stuff together.”
“Then what?”
“Back in the dorm, I get a couple of watchouts. These are guys who go to the toilet and back pretending to piss while really watching what the guards are watching. If it’s all safe, the youngsters start peeling the oranges. They rip the peel into little tiny shreds and flush it. You can’t put the peel in the trash because the nightshift go through it with little torches looking for drug paraphernalia and shit. They flush four oranges worth of peel at a time, otherwise it blocks the toilet up.”
“So when it’s all peeled?”
“You put one plastic trash bag inside a laundry bag and that laundry bag inside another trash bag. You also need a storage box. You can get one from the store for $1.50 for legal papers and shit. The best is the plastic box you get only if you’re on a top bunk. The bottom bunk has shelves, but the top has a plastic box. You put all the oranges in the bag you’ve made from the three bags. You have youngsters heating water with stingers.”
“Explain to the public what a stinger is.”
“It’s a piece of metal with an electric element that heats water up. Campers use them. For fifty oranges, you need twenty-five bottles of water to make twenty-five bottles of hooch. You put sugar in with the oranges. People come with water and pour it in the bag. You give it a good mix. For yeast, you put two cinnamon rolls in hot water and rub them. They flake into nothing, and you can extract the yeast from the dough. Then you get a pen, take the ink out, so you’re left with a hollow tube, which is the breather basically. You ruffle the top of the trash bag, put the pen tube in, and someone ties the bag while you hold the breather. Then you slowly push the bag down in the box, so its deflating through the breather, and put the lid on the box. You put some legal pads and clothes on top of the box, shove it under the bunk bed, and leave it.”
“How does it turn to alcohol?”
“It’s so warm, where the bunk beds are situated, the wall actually sweats. You put the box near the wall, but you have to be careful not to put it up against the wall or else it gets the box wet, it deteriorates, the bag hangs out, and the cops see it. One-and-a-half days later, you check on it. There’s a reaction of yeast, sugar and oranges. It foams up, smelly, and the bag expands. The breather stops the bag from blowing up. Every half hour it blows up so you have to burp it. You undo the string, take the pen out, and push the bag down. Someone walks round spraying hair gel or the whole dorm stinks of hooch. You pop the inside trash bag. All the pulp and shit gets caught in the laundry bag, and the hooch flows through to the outside trash bag. You can actually keep the pulp in a jar to kick your next brew off, then you don’t need yeast.”
“It’s amazing how organized it all is.”
“You wait for 10pm headcount, and lights out. Then the youngsters come round with empty soda bottles, which they fill from the batch. They wipe the bottles down, and only fill them to the label, as every three hours they have to burp the bottles or else they blow up. It’s still cooking, so the youngsters have got to wake up every three hours to burp the bottles. To do this, they slowly undo the cap. It rises up fizzy, and lets the gas out. It takes three more days. Once you can’t burp it no more, then you’ve got hooch and it’s really good.”

Coming soon: The story of how Wild Man’s first batch of hooch got the whole dorm drunk, and almost triggered a race riot. And how Wild Man failed to pay the Aryan Brotherhood their full share of the hooch they’d authorized, and was summoned once again to explain himself to the head of the yard.


Anonymous said...

Hi shaun

Good luck with the piece in the guardian I hope it generates more interest in the blog and your work

In friendship,


Anonymous said...

I do enjoy your blog


Anonymous said...

For those us of wondering just exactly how they make hooch, it was an interesting story.


Anonymous said...

Hi Shaun - just to say good luck and I'm looking forward to reading the piece on Saturday. Hope all is well with you and your writing is still going strong.

Best as ever,

Erwin James

Anonymous said...



Anonymous said...

The wild man? Is this our mutual friend P****? I thought he'd been released and sent across the pond by now? He's still in ADC custody? I hope it's not him. Oh and as always great writing look Fwd to the Guardian piece. much respect Blind-man, you're friend and accomplice, prophet

Jon said...

Yes, Prophet, Wild Man is Peter. He is home in England, and his blogs are based on conversations I'm having with him here.



Anonymous said...

Awesome read!

Michael Phillip Pearce

Anonymous said...

I truly enjoyed reading the hooch recipe. I have been offered a drink of it while visiting a client in the “Smurf” section of the jail. My client added some peppermint hard candy to tweak the taste. It definitely did not smell appetizing but then again I have the luxury of choice.

Hope all is well.


Anonymous said...

Awesome work Shaun, I love what you are doing!

Anonymous said...

Ahh sweet! please send my regards to Peter... Glad to hear he's out of Arpaio's reach and back in mother England, I can rest easy now that I know all our family is home and since I finally made contact with Sherwin all that's left is tracking down Jilly bear and the family circle is complete =) Well again here's to you and Wildman...
May neighbours respect you,
Trouble neglect you,
The angels protect you,
And heaven accept you....
Jerry Hoey aka Prophet

Anonymous said...

Hello to you and Peter. Send my hugs. Great read! Tell his crazy ass to keep um comin.

Jennifer Martin

Sue O. (aka Joannie, SS) said...

Man, 50...FIFTY, oranges?? Chuckle. What, no potatoes? I guess fruit works better. Bran told me sugar is another big trade staple. I guess this is why. Best wishes Peter.

Anonymous said...

The Guardian is my favorite paper!



Cityboy said...

What a great read from a relatively new blogger !
I will have to get him around to my place to recreate some hooch moments along with the Pirate for authenticity.

Anyway no more mad train journeys....at least for now.

**Warning** If you see a man in a panama hat sitting under the clock at 12 O'clock reading the Guardian this Saturday at Waterloo station. KEEP AWAY CHILDREN

Anonymous said...

hey this is the wildman thanks 4 the comments, to the people that know me, hello dudes, 4 the people that do not know me f*** you and get a life already ps hey 2 jae ps. nice pics.

Wild Man

Anonymous said...

My goodness the memories this brings back. Just a note for our readers, the smell is horrendous. If the bag bursts the noxious (sic) smell from the fumes is a mix of something along the lines of feces, rotten eggs, and human vomit. I remember in our dorm a bag bursting and the smell was so overpowering. Great post! -Jose in San Diego.

Tim from Oldham said...

To Michael- the drunk driver. I hope your "tour" of tent city (you didnt seem to enjoy it)makes you think twice about getting behind the wheel drunk again and risking hurting law abiding citizens. Then it will have done its job. Well done Joe.

Tim from Oldham said...

To Michael- the drunk driver. I hope your "tour" of tent city (you didnt seem to enjoy it)makes you think twice about getting behind the wheel drunk again and risking hurting law abiding citizens. Then it will have done its job. Well done Joe.

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