Going To Prison The Best Thing That Ever Happened To Joe Nacchio's Waistline, Acting Career

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Got a prison sentence coming your way? Excited about the prospect of sleeping in bunk beds again but nervous about just about everything else? If your experience proves to be anything like that of former CEO Qwest CEO Joseph Nacchio, fret not: you're actually in for a pretty good time.

Oh sure, Joe told the WSJ life on the inside was like participating in a grown-ups version of Lord of the Flies but he also...

Made friends for life:

Prison...offered the CEO, who once was surrounded by highflying telecom executives before his prosecution for insider trading in 2007, a new set of peers: drug offenders Spoonie and Juice, and a bunkmate named Spider. "I trust Spoonie and Juice with my back. I wouldn't trust the guys who worked for me at Qwest," said Mr. Nacchio, in his first interview since he was fully released from custody Sept. 20.

Got back to his fighting weight:

He has broad shoulders from a daily regimen of lifting weights and five-mile walks and runs. He has a goatee and his head, formerly covered with black hair, is completely shaved and tan. He says his blood pressure and cholesterol are lower than when he entered prison and his body fat has dropped dramatically.

Tee'ed himself up to accept any movie roles Ed Norton might pass on, or to even share the screen with the actor, playing a young Ed:

Prison appears to have shaved years off his looks...He thinks he looks like actor Edward Norton on his federal Bureau of Prisons identification card.

Ensured he'll never have to ask family members for a kidney:

Spoonie, 45, said other white-collar offenders were "just all full of themselves," and stereotyped inmates such as himself and Juice, another drug offender, because of their tattoos and crimes. "We are like best friends now," he said, adding that Mr. Nacchio's prison nickname was "Joe-ski-luv," because he's been married to the same woman for more than 30 years. "If he ever needs a lung or a bone, I'm there."

Kept the laughs coming:

Mr. Nacchio and his prison mates found humor in their situation. They liked to play practical jokes on the "newbies"—white-collar offenders new to prison camp. Mr. Nacchio would sit quietly beside them the first time they entered the TV room. Spoonie and another inmate would burst in and pretend to jump Mr. Nacchio, wailing on him with fake kicks and punches as he begged them to stop.

Former Qwest CEO Joseph Nacchio: Tales From a White-Collar Prison Sentence [WSJ]

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