So I'm at the library yesterday, paying down my fines, when this guy comes up next to me at the counter trying to do the same thing. He looks normal enough, but he's a little timid. The librarian asks him if he has his library card and he says no. They ask him if he has any other ID and he says no but then says, "well, I have my prison I.D." The librarian says that would work so I look over after he's put it down and it looks just like my school I.D. except it says "Department of Corrections" on it, and, this is the best part, in black permanent marker someone has sloppily written "Released 12-8-05." I laughed on the inside at that. I mean, what escaped prisoner couldn't write that on there? I got this funny idea that he'd broken out of prison just so that he could make it to the library to pay down his fines, and then he was going to break back in. It was the eigth of December, after all. How touching that the first place he went on his release day was the library.
Because I like talking to strangers, I almost tried to make a joke with him: "Hey, if you lose that I.D. while you're in prison, do they kick you out?" But I didn't.