At least I'll make $6
On Monday, someone I know had to report for jury duty. I specifically remember having a conversation with Nick on Monday night when we were driving home from work about how terrified I would be if I had to go in for jury duty. And I mean terrified like in, huddled in the corner in the fetal position rocking back and forth. Nick's opinions were exactly the opposite. He claimed he would be THRILLED if he ever got summonsed for jury duty. He thinks it would be so fun, not only to get a day off work, but to be a part of a real! live! trial! and get to interact with all of the other jury members, voice his opinions, potentially argue and all the other lovely things that go along with the job. I told him he was absolutely crazy. KRA-ZEE.

So yesterday, we happened to pull a jury duty summons out of the mailbox. Which of us do you think it was for? Go on, guess.

Yeah, that's right. Me, the one of us who doesn't want anything to do with jury duty. Not Nick, the one who would pay someone for the opportunity to serve on jury duty, if he could. The one who would be a professional full-time jury member if there was a job out there like that. Karma's a big fat butthead.

And I know I need to be a grown-up about this and just suck it up. It's crucial to our judicial system, and it's my duty as a citizen of this country. Blah blah blah.

But seriously, I'm scared. The whole process seems rather terrifying to me. Besides the dumb little stuff I'm already worried about, like showing up at the courthouse all alone and nervous and trying to figure out where I'm supposed to go, or spending all day (or all week) with a group of very serious strangers, or having to bring my freaking lunch to the courthouse and possibly eating at the UNcool lunch table, there's the much bigger issue that I'm concerned about, which is deciding someone's fate. I sometimes have a meltdown if forced to decide which fast-food restaurant Nick and I pick dinner up from. And there are some mornings where I have at least three different outfits on because I can't figure out what I want to wear that day. Can I really make this decision?

I do watch a lot of investigative shows, so I guess I'm fairly qualified. I'm a big fan of 20/20, Dateline, The First 48, 60 Minutes, Court TV, et al. Perhaps I just need to pretend the whole time that I'm really in my pajamas sitting on the couch eating pretzels and this will come a lot more easily to me.

So anyway, I have about a month to sit and fret about this whole ordeal and prepare myself by watching an unusual amount of investigative shows. In the meantime, have any of you ever served on a jury before? Any words of encouragement? Anything I need to know?

I have a few questions of my own, like how frequent are the potty breaks? Is there snack time? Will they allow me to have a Starbucks cup in the jury box? Can I bring a friend, or even better, can I send Nick in my place?


Blogger Nick said...

I can not believe this. How is it that those who could careless about this get picked for these things? That is why I think OJ got off.
Juror #1- I like orange juice so... not guilty.
Juror #2- I don't but my husband likes football so... not guilty.
Juror #3- What the hell am I doing here?

Angie, just make the right move and disagree with everything everyone else says. That way you get the opportunity to be a part of a hung jury. Either that or when you first walk into the court room, just say "Man, they look guilty to me."

Anonymous Anonymous said...

I'm so ridiculously glad I'll never have to do jury duty, since I work in a law firm and went to law school :P Usually if you give really logical reasons why you wouldn't be able to give your full attention as a jury member (e.g., my mom just had surgery, my uncle just died, I just moved), you can get out of it. - loud

Anonymous alyndabear said...

I'm with you - I find the idea terrifying. Oops. That wasn't very comforting, was it?

Seriously, all the TV shows and movies I've seen have been bad. The Juror movie.. she's blackmailed by the bad guys to force the jury to vote a certain way -- CSI, where that guy was killed by his fellow jurors for not agreeing to vote the same way.


That probably didn't help, either?

Basically I have no idea what it's like, but I hope for your sake it's a small court case and not a ginormous one. Keep me informed? ;)

Blogger janet said...

I have to go to FEDERAL jury duty next month and I am secretly excited because I might get out of work for FIVE WEEKS! Of course, because I want it, I will not get it. Bah!

Blogger Jennifer said...

I had jury duty (for our county) 2 years ago. I was a little nervous about it too... but actually, it was quite interesting and I ended up kind of enjoying it! The trial I got picked for was just 1 day, and it was interesting at least :) So maybe it will be okay!

That is awful strange though that you had just talked about not wanting to do it... then you get a letter! Freaky!

Blogger thethinker said...

The UNcool lunch table... sounds like something out of high school.

I eat at that table every day.

Anonymous Anonymous said...

Ha! Guess what? I have jury duty (my first time EVER) next Monday! I'm soooo excited, so I guess I'm siding with Nick! Now, you do know I'll get dismissed & you'll be picked for the trial of the century, right!?!

Blogger Angela said...

Janet and HollowSquirrel -- you two are totally crazy to be excited about jury duty. I'm not sure we can be friends anymore.

And Loud -- I'm so jealous that you went through law school and can no longer qualify for jury duty. The only things that I can no longer qualify for are focus groups.

Do you think I can get a few law classes under my belt in less than a month?

Anonymous Pink Herring said...

I have to agree that the people who are excited for jury duty are crazy...but there is really nothing to be scared of. I've served on 2 trials, and one was for attempted murder... that guy was so guilty it was a joke. He admitted he shot his wife in the head, but said that he "didn't mean to kill her, just to hurt her". The other time, here in Baltimore, it was the most soul-sucking experience of my life, just because the other people there representing our great city were SO SO SO STUPID that it made me sad for humanity. They wanted to let the 2 guys off on gun charges because the police made a typo in the arrest report.

Jury duty is boring, but not really scary. If you get called again, just bring a book, enjoy your day off work and hope you don't get called!

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