Wednesday, July 6, 2011


There’s got to be a better way. I showed up for jury duty at the appointed time and place amid about 150 other people. After the juror swearing in process, the lady let us know that there were only Better Waytwo judges selecting juries this week. These juries typically have 8 people on them with two of them being alternates. So, 150 people showed up for 16 not so coveted slots. Like I said, there’s got to be a better way. Although I’d rather not get a jury summons, I don’t mind serving once I’m there. I’ve been selected to juries twice before. It’s always the same thing, a throng of people to select a handful of slots. Anyway, after swearing in we watched two videos. The videos explained the judicial process as far as a juror is concerned. It was well done and much better than the old flick. I always thought it was distasteful to have highly paid employees of the court repeatedly tell us that it is our civic duty to volunteer to be jurors. It always came across badly. The new video puts serving as a juror in the light of fulfilling the needs of America’s legal system of jury by one’s peers. It comes across real well and not pompous.

I only slept a few hours last night and was not excited to get up to get down to the courthouse. Entering the courthouse, I had to go through security twice because I forgot to take my cell phone off before going through the scanner. Besides keys and other metal objects, all billfolds had to be put in trays to be x-rayed too. At the other end, the fellow behind me screamed that someone had taken his wallet from the scanning conveyor. While everyone was looking at him he noticed he had already picked it up; it was in his hand. I smirked and walked on. After checking in we were herded to the Jury Assembly Room. It was like a freezer in there. Eileen had reminded me to take an arm sleeve and I’m glad she did. Sometimes she does my thinking for me!! It didn’t take me long to get over any self conscious hesitation to put that long arm sleeve on my right arm. I would have had a real struggle with my arm to make it in that cold of a room without the arm sleeve. It was bad enough even with it. We were supposed to be there by 8am. At about 8:30 they started the proceedings.

After the initial group of people was called off for the first judge, I began reading my Kindle. Soon though, I was too distracted by the conversations going on around me. It’s amazing what people talk about to complete strangers. I later chatted with a fellow two chairs over from me but that wasn’t as interesting as some of the other conversations!! After a couple of hours the other group of people was called. I wasn’t among them so I knew I was headed home. I grabbed my Kindle and was ready to go but had to wait until they dismissed us one by one, calling out our names. That too took a while- - - for that too, there’s got to be a better way.

The Casey Anthony verdict came in after I wrote this. I'll make a comment on the case tomorrow.

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