to man empty houses and telephones and complete the foolish handover book. After the meetings are over, Gately has to draw up hourly attendance lists and record in the handover book who is there and what is going on. He is responsible for housework patrol and handover book entries about housework completion as well as the written assignment of housework for the following day from the weekly schedule. The inmates must be spelled out everything that is expected of them in advance so that they cannot complain if something is intruded on them. Then the people who haven’t done their chores have to be told that they have a one-week ban, which tends to be a nuisance. Gately has to unlock Pat’s cupboard, get the key to the pill cabinet and unlock the pill cabinet. Inmates who regularly take medication respond to opening the pill cabinet like a cat to the squeak of a can opener. Suddenly they appear out of nowhere. Gately has to go to the inmates who show up for their medication, oral insulin, viral medication, pimple tinctures,
Distribute antidepressants and lithium, and then he has to record it all in the medical handover book, which is like ancient Rome. He has to look at Pat’s weekly overview calendar and print out the next day’s appointments on a sheet of paper in block letters because Pat cannot decipher her own paralytic pig claw. He has to consult with Johnette Foltz about how the inmates performed sharing and healing at St. E., BYP in Brookline and NA Come Down for Women in East Cambridge, where you can find a few of the long-established women and all this data must be entered. Gately has to go upstairs and stop by Kate G., who again felt too sick to go to the AA tonight and has been in bed more or less continuously for three days reading someone named Sylvia Plate. Going up to the women’s side on the first floor is an unbelievable nerve because first he has to unlock a small steel cage above a switch at the bottom of the stairs in the back office, on the switch
Then a buzzer sounds on the first floor, and then he has to shout “man approaching” and give the female inmates time to get dressed or something before he can get up.