Friday, September 16, 2005

Being a citizen

I didn’t think it was possible, but I have actually found a job that requires me to do less (and pays less) than my current job.

I am a juror.

Here’s what I pictured happening:

Previously: Naomi gets jury duty notice.
8 am: Naomi arrives at courthouse in accordance with law to perform v. important civic duty.
8:45 am: Naomi gets called for panel selection.
9:15 am: Naomi gets questioned by judge, admits to favoring the death penalty for all crimes more serious than shop-lifting, gets excused from panel.
9:18 am: Naomi returns to juror office, collects $4 travel fees, goes home.
Rest of day: Naomi enjoys sun and fun, runs errands, cooks delicious lunch and dinner, etc.
Next day: Naomi returns to work, complains (stoically) about performance of v. important civic duty.

Here’s what actually happened:

Previously: Naomi gets jury duty notice.
8 am: Naomi arrives at courthouse in accordance with law to perform v. important civic duty. On way from metro, Naomi makes friends with random girl also performing her civic duty.
8:45 am: sitting around in Juror Lounge.
9:15 am: still sitting.
9:18 am: not going anywhere.
9:45 am: Naomi gets called for panel selection. New friend is not called. New friend pretends to be sympathetic.
9:45-11:15 am: Standing with 50 other members of juror pool in hallways, waiting to be escorted to courtroom, waiting to be admitted into courtroom, being dismissed for a 10 minute break, and then waiting some more.
11:15 am-1 pm: Voirdire process. Answer questionnaire. Get questioned by judge.

This is where it started to go wrong. I knew what the wrong answers were. I knew what to say to get out of this. It wouldn’t even have been lying really. I can’t explain exactly what the questions were, because I can’t talk about the case, but… Let’s do it this way:

You know those quizzes in women’s magazines, like “Are you a neat freak or the slobbiest slob around?” and the first question is:

1) After cooking a delicious meal for you and your best boy, do you
A) Immediately wash (with boiling water) all pots, and polish them until you can see your reflection.
B) Leave them until after dinner, when the boy toy washes and you dry.
C) Leave them in the sink until the mold starts complaining that the counters are looking a little dirty.

And you know very well—even if you do sometimes leave dishes in the sink for a day or two, and there was that one plastic container that got a little moldy, but anyway it was just from a takeout place, and you threw it away, and so it didn’t really count—that you’re going to answer B, because the other answers are just wrong.

Well that’s what this voirdire was like. I couldn’t bring myself to give the wrong answers. And when they asked me if I could judge the case impartially, I had to get all cute and say, “I think so!”

Damn me for being adorable! Why couldn’t I look all strung out, like the man in front of me who got exempted?

So my fate was sealed, and I was put on the jury. And that’s all I can tell you. No really. They made me promise not to talk about it to anyone, and even though they didn’t include imaginary friends in the computer on their list, I have a feeling that posting about the case on the internet just *might* be against the rules.

In other news, I have not run all week, for no good reason. Actually, have you all read this? Because it’s utterly brilliant as well as hilarious. Suffice it to say, my S2 has been very persuasive this week.

But I’m very excited about the 5K tomorrow. And apparently I’m supposed to make truffles. Piper, help!

P.S. I have a free month of Netflix, and I'm completely paralyzed. What movies do I want them to send me? All suggestions welcome.


Anonymous Dolores said...

Ahahahahahaha! You're a juror! Finally one of my friends will FEEL MY PAIN.

Any idea of how long it'll last?

In other news, I just saw the movie "Saved!" a few weeks ago and fell in love with it, so I've been recommending it to everyone and Nabih's also gonna get it with his free month of Netflix. SEE IT (if you haven't already).

2:20 PM  
Blogger jeanne said...

One of my work mates was on jury duty that lasted two weeks and he wasn't allowd to say a word about it. Of course, I needled him endlessly to try to get him to spill. I'm not sure he thought that was as hilarious as i did.

Rent "The Jury"!!! It was a masterpiece theater production, and how do you get a free month of netflix?!!!

See ya in 20 minutes. Humidity is 97%, expected to dip to 93. Yeah.

6:55 AM  
Blogger Hutch said...

Men of Honor was a great movie we ordered from Netflix. Hope you enjoy! Congrats on performing your civic duty!

2:51 PM  
Blogger David said...

Hope to read a great race report!
Last time I had jury duty I had to report to a courtroom where I knew the judge. He used to ask my wife out on dates all the time (before we were married). I was sure that would get me out of the jury. Damn if I ddidn;t eand up being the jury foreman.
Netflix I just watched: The Human Stain. Grade "A".

6:22 AM  
Anonymous bd1 said...

I once served on a jury in a case of attempted murder. It took forever. After several days of debate we made our decision whereupon we learned from the judge that it was declared a mistrial because some of the jurors had been speaking publicly about the case. All that money and time wasted.

Thank you for saying such nice things about my post. My S2 and S1 were getting the hell beat out of them by the shed. So, yeah, I was a little behind in reading blogs and journals and such.

1:07 AM  

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