These are interesting times......as the old chinese curse goes.
I'm inside the "low security" area of the prison I work at, running the inmate welding crew and ran into what you might call politics. (I wouldn't say our wards are petty or anything...)
My guys were doing some welding in the kitchen when one of the kitchen inmates ran up and stashed four cartons of apple juice in the welding cart. I haven't been inside the compound in awhile, so I'm not up to date on where the line is between "greasing the wheels" and allowing contraband out on the yard, so I told them; "You need to drink those before we leave the kitchen, guys" -Since it is a rule that no food leaves the dining area. They sell it or make pruno out of it, otherwise. Any food they want to take to the dorm is bought at the comissary and even then they aren't allowed more than a certain amount.
The guys ignored me and went on with their welding. A little while later I noticed that they'd hidden the juice in the cart. When they finished up and headed for the door I stopped them and told them "Look guys you need to drink that apple juice before you leave this building. Your buddy stashed that in your cart RIGHT IN FRONT OF ME. I don't want you to get into trouble for something this stupid" They just stared at me so I went on;"Look it can go two ways; You drink it or throw it away or I have to get more people involved in this"
I know, it's just apple juice. But I thought you could make pruno out of it and anyway I was pissed that they'd tried to hide it.
I asked the boss about it as soon as I got back to maintenance and he said what I imagine you're thinking;"Over apple juice?"
He told me that no, you can't use apple juice to make pruno. You need actual apples. Orange juice would work, though.
He said I was right of course. It'd be just the kind of petty meep the delightful new management would love to fire guys like me for allowing, but yeah, it qualifies as a meep move.
The welders went and talked to him a little later threatening to quit and saying I called them stupid and that I'd threatened to fire them. (...and they wouldn't dream of exaggerating either)
He explained why I made such a fuss and reminded them that they were getting upset about something I could have written a shot over. Since I've been pretty nice to them from the beginning and still treat them pretty well, they get that I was just protecting myself and everything seems to have calmed down. -At least into the mild everyday paranoia you have when you're working with felons.