"Where they have my mom, she has to wear a bracelet. Not a jewelry kind of bracelet, it’s a strip of thick plastic. That’s heat-sealed around her wrist so she can never take it off. You can’t cut it. You can’t melt it apart with a cigarette. People have tried all these ways to get out.
Wearing the bracelet, every time you walk around the hallways, you hear locks snapping shut. A magnetic strip or something sealed inside the plastic gives off a signal. It stops the elevator doors from opening for you to get on. It locks almost every door if you get within four feet. You can’t leave the floor you’re assigned. You can’t get to the street. You can go into the garden or the dayroom or the chapel or the dining room, but nowhere else in the world.
If somehow you do get past an exterior door, for sure the bracelet sets off an alarm.
This is St. Anthony’s. The rugs, the drapes, the beds, pretty much everything is flameproof. It’s all stain-resistant. You could do just about anything anywhere, and they could wipe it up. It’s what they call a care center. It feels bad, telling you all this. Spoiling the surprise, I mean. You’ll see it all yourself, soon enough. That is, if you live too long.
Or if you just give up and go nuts ahead of schedule.
My mom, Eva, even you, eventually everybody gets a bracelet."
- From Choke, by Chuck Palahnuik