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Rikers Runs on Ramen & Other Prison Commissary Secrets

Just because you're behind bars doesn't mean you have to forgo your favorite snack foods and electronics. Today the Post takes a look at some of the stuff for sale to prisoners on Rikers Island, finding that the number one seller is Ramen, which can be had for 35 cents. (Most prisoners discard the noodles and use the flavor packet to spice up bland jail food.) Here's what else you can pick up at the prison market:

§ Packet of mayonnaise: 4 cents (The #2 seller!)

§ Coffee: 59 cents

§ Peanut M&Ms: 66 cents

§ Coke (the beverage): $1.53

Last year prisoners spent $12.8 million in city jails. Their relatives can establish commissary accounts for their loved ones, and companies that supply commissaries nationwide say inmates are spending more than ever, "although it's unclear why prisoners have more cash to spend in the cell." Prison supply company VP Bob Barker (come on down!) tells the tabloid, "Our biggest area for growth around the country is in electronics, including radios and Nintendo games."

Tomorrow, their newest customer is expected to be rapper Lil Wayne, who's expected to turn himself in to authorities to finally begin his one-year prison sentence stemming from a 2007 arrest on gun charges. (MTV has details on what he can expect at Rikers). Or course, the Post is never one to let a prison story slip by without a light-hearted prison rape quip: "Perhaps the last words one wants to hear in the pokey are 'beef stick' or 'honey bun,' but those two snacks have both been staples of the inmate diet for decades."

http://gothamist.com/2010/03/01/rikers_runs_on_ramen_and_other_vend.php