Jury Duty

So I am sitting down at the Frank Crowley  court building. Jury service, I got a letter in the mail for jury service.

So  now I must sit in what feels like  1970s airport. First, I feel like everything government can achieve when functionality, simplicity and the validation of never offending anybody has been reached inside government buildings. Brutalist architecture  reigns supreme.

The well dressed lady at the front has to remind people to stay off the walls. This is either due to the fire Marshall or a ritualistic system of oppression enforcing compliance via inculcated instant obedience to arbitrary tasks.

“We goin to get ready to start a film.” Film time.

After describing the process of voir dire a roll call covering roles in court proceeds. Defendant judge recorder etc. They do not mention interns.

They mention Facebook MySpace and Twitter. Imagine that, 2016 and people are still  mentioning Twitter. Ha!

Okay the video is over and it has dawned on me that the real reason they have these boring videos and announcements is because people tend to forget  to do simple accounting issues like turning in jury badges.

I’m totally trying to get on the grand jury. There is  a 90% chance  that I can’t  but it is also minutely possible that I can, so excelsior. The crowning achievement of the day arrives at 9:44 when the woman at the front says for anyone who needs to go to the bathroom  to run, emphasize run, and hurry back before we begin. This should be one or two people with bladder or prostate problems but around forty people  get up and WALK.  Seriously anyone who has worked as a teacher knows that probably half of all bathroom requests are just to go clear the air mentally. What we need is the sassiest, rudest  person possible standing at the entry way saying “really?” To every  person.

Now they are divvying up the juror pool. Having sworn in I am now ineligible to lie and get out of jury service. But a compulsively dishonest citizen could have the mendacity to pummel through the selection process in order to make an impact.  There’s a guy wearing stunner shades. He must be Methodist.

Since  we’ve all been there it does seem odd that juror pools get progressively larger as they go on. Not BUM, but like, the first jury selection pool is about 136, and the third goes from the 500s to the 800s.

897 to 1263. I am the progressively accurate juror 1984. I hope I get a traffic ticket case. Jury annulment all the way. The next group puts us well into the 1500s. Makes you wonder if the person grouping these gets to go home as soon he/ she is done. Up to 1921. Unless there’s a peak afoot I’m in the next pool. Up to 2913. I m in the 7th  floor. I took the stairs.

Jurors are mean because they have to sit around all day. Frank Crowley was Dallas  county  commissioner  from 1o60 to 1968.

Now I am in a coffee shop the next day. All I am going to say is the case was complicated enough and emotionally charged enough that they had to invite 1,000 people  get 12 people and I’m glad I’m not one of them. It is an incredibly visceral experience when the fate of multiple people hangs in the balance. I don’t want to be on a grand jury now. Everyone owes it to the justice system to show up when invited. Not because it is enjoyable, but because some unpleasant and nasty situations come down to “if you don’t, someone bad will.” Because evil happens in the world.


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