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Trends In Prison Fashion

It's becoming increasingly common for sports teams to occasionally wear throwback uniforms from past glory years. I've always wondered why other uniformed occupations don't do this too, just to change things up every now and then. Today the San Jose Mercury News reports on one group of people who are sporting the old-time look, though not of their own accord and for reasons beyond mere nostalgia:

For some jail inmates in Santa Clara County, the black-and-white stripes of yesteryear have become the look of right now.

As of Monday, about 1,000 men and 200 women at the Elmwood Correctional Facility in Milpitas were sporting the throwback threads. ...

"That's retro," Terry Thornton, spokeswoman for the state Department of Corrections said of the zebra suits, in between chuckles. ...

Spokesman Mark Cursi said the jail gets about "a half-dozen" calls a year from people wondering whether that shifty character they just spotted on the street wearing orange or institutional green was an escaped inmate. ...

Cutting down the number of false reports is a priority for the jail. When officials hear reports that a convict has escaped, they go into lockdown mode--stopping all jail operations and doing a head count. It's a big hassle, they say, especially when those reports are false.

...thus accomplishing the dual feat of saving taxpayer dollars and preventing a generation of children from growing up wondering why the Hamburglar is clad in black and white.

(H/t MLG.) 

--Josh Patashnik