Wednesday, May 20, 2015

Jury Duty: Day One

8:00am:  I arrived at the courts building along with several hundred other "randomly-selected" citizens, all eager to become cogs in the wheel of justice.  A sense of civic pride welled up in me as I made my way to the check-in desk.  The woman behind the counter was friendly.  I smiled at her and refrained from making any kind of a scene.  It's too early for that.

9:00am: I've been sitting in this room for an hour now, alternating between staring at my phone and staring at people who are staring at their phones.  That sense of civic pride is becoming drowned out by sheer boredom.  The realization that I am surrounded by strangers is starting to set in.  For the moment, I am resisting the urge to stir up a commotion.  I'm not sure how long my restraint will hold though.  The TV is looping the same instructional video over and over and over again.  I'm refusing to look at it anymore, but I assume it's still going because the background soundtrack for it is still repeating in the overhead speakers. I wouldn't use the word "rockin" to describe it. This music may very well be causing minor brain bleeding.  It has the potential to drive me to violence.  And YES, instructional video, THANK YOU for continuing to display the wireless network password that DOESN'T WORK!  I smashed the TV to tiny bits.

9:10:  That thing I said about smashing the TV.....not true.  No violence just yet.  I thought about getting a drink.  They don't have whiskey.  Settled for a diet soda. 

9:13:  Why is the guy next to me talking?  More importantly, why is he talking to me?  Don't do that.  Please don't.

9:33: Twenty minutes just went by. They took their time though.  If I didn't have a clock I would have bet money it was halfway through next week by now.

10:02:  This room is a cross-section of America.  I see people from all walks of life.  Well, there are no rich people here.  I guess rich people are exempt from public service?  Then why am I here?  Obviously there has been a mix up.  They clearly don't know who I am.  I am finding it difficult to detect happy people here as well.  But other than rich people and happy people, we've pretty much got it covered.  Surprisingly,  there aren't that many fat people.  You'd think there would be more chubbies. Still, a good mix.  There's a butcher, a baker, a candlestick maker, blue collar, white collar, no collar, blacks, whites, Hispanics, people with good hair, people with no hair, normal people, weird people, and what appears to be a pedophile.  There's even a Japanese guy.  Where did he come from?  He looks so young!  Hey Yamamoto! You better move away from that pedophile!

10:17: I'm really enjoying watching all these people trying to use the coffee vending machine that doesn't drop a cup before it sprays out the coffee.  It's comical.  I would warn them but if these people were paying any attention at all they would have noticed the first half-dozen unfortunate saps who wasted 75 cents on coffee that poured directly into the city sewer system.  And these people are going to be jurors?  Folks, let's scrap this whole system and go back to the days of challenging people to a duel.  Sure, sometimes the bad guy wins, but this is rolling the dice here.  If I was an attorney selecting jurors, my first question would be "Did you put money in the broken coffee machine?".  If you answer "yes", you're out!  Oh, there's an idea.  Now I'm thinking of investing 75 cents myself.

10:59: They just called my number.  I have to go.  It is an accomplishment that I've made it this far without hurting myself or someone else, and without making any friends.  They probably won't let me tell you about most of the remainder of the day, but we'll see.

11:17: The judge seems nice.

11:37: You know how there's always that one guy in any group?  That guy who just wants to talk, to share his opinions, to express himself to the whole assembly? Yeah well there are four of them in this group.  We would have been done by now if they would just cork it.

11:42: HaHaHaHa!  The prosecuted just mispronounced the name "Czeczevzeckoflip".  Or I don't know.  Some name that probably was spelled similar to that based on how he pronounced it only different because he pronounced it wrong.  It was obvious.  No one corrected him though.

11:55: Recess!!  Haven't had one of these since grade school.  Actually, this is better because I don't have to be back until tomorrow. 

11:57:  I checked with the bailiff.  It wasn't a mix up.  They wanted me here even though I'm extremely wealthy.  But, as I suspected, he had no idea who I am.  Guess I'll just come back tomorrow and see how much more nothing happens.