Tuesday, January 27, 2009

Jury Duty--Cheap entertainment at its finest.

I got called to Jury Duty. Woo Hoo! I kind of like jury duty but I wasn't looking forward to this one because I have piles of work to do. But alas, I am not one of those who tries to ditch my civic duty, so I woke up at 6:30 and...WHAT? 6:30?! I have to be downtown by 7:30!! After the fastest shower ever, I hopped on the freeway and off to Disney Hall to park. I rushed over to the courthouse and made it only 10 minutes late. Until I realized I was at the wrong court. Rats. I rushed over to Civil Court, had an asthma attack, and sat down to listen to the spiel. The cast of characters were rich, especially OCD woman who kept rubbing her hands with hand sanitizer every five minutes. Chuck Taylor was on jury duty (and me wearing Keds. For Shame), as was Mr. Pacman. Oh, but folks, let me tell you about Mama's Boy and his Helicopter Mom.

Mama's Boy was easily mid-to-late 20's. His mom drove him to jury duty--and stayed with him. She told him when to take his paperwork up front. She detached his juror's badge and put it in the plastic holder. Then, as God is my witness, she attached it to his shirt for him. Mind you, Mama's Boy was physically able to do all of this by himself and did not appear to have a mental disability (which would preclude him from Jury anyway). Time went on and Helicopter Mom reminded him of a dentist appointment and to have the cable switched over to her and to go back to the salon and tell them he needs his haircut again because they didn't cut it short enough on Friday when he got it cut. He told him if he gets called before lunch to meet her back at the jury room, where she'll be waiting, and they'll go to lunch together. Then, the conversation took an unexpected turn.
Mom: I haven't seen you since Friday. You went out with (poor girl he's dating) and stayed at her place. I don't know why when you had to work the next day. What did you do on Friday?
Son: We went to dinner.
Mom: Where did you eat?
Son: Daily Grill.
Mom: Which one?
Son: Burbank.
Mom: Did you pay or did you go Dutch? [Dear God, woman, what's it to you?]
I don't know how she has the time to date between work and school and the gym.
Son: (mumble mumble)
Mom: She takes Internet classes too. That's what she told me. I know what happened. She went back and talk to her girlfriends. " Oh, he said he needs space. He just has cold feet." That's what girls think. (mumble mumble) She's a smart girl. If I were that smart when I was younger, you wouldn't be here. You hear me? You'd never have been born.

Yikes! Suddenly, I felt very sorry for Mama's Boy. But not for long. My attention shifted to a woman who was clearly not wanting to be on a jury. Lady Huffington flounced and huffed and generally made it known that she was unhappy. The supervisor announced that they were sending a group to a different court house and started calling names. When she called Lady Huffington's, she answered with a "(damn it) Yes!" The court they sent us to was the Mental Health court in Cypress Park or Glassell Park, I'm not sure where. It was a drive, but not too far and the directions were straightforward. Lady Huffington (and a few others) made a stink like it was in Orange County, for Gods sake. It was a strange little court house, but everyone seemed friendly and it was positively crawling with handsome deputies. So, the huffy one tells the bailiff that she needs to be excused and he says "sure, I'll tell the judge." We start getting called and she's still sitting there. She is making faces and it's clear she thinks she's privileged.

Jurors #2 and #4 lied--no, really. I heard them in the hall say what they did, and when they got inside, suddenly their jobs had changed to something that would excuse them. With them out of the way, Lady Huffington was called. She plopped into the seat in the jury box and the judge had had enough. "Look, we're all in the same boat. Let's try to have a positive attitude." Huffy explained that she had a migraine. The judge pretty much told her to take some pain medication and get over it. And just like that, I ended up on a trial. It's supposed to be over by tomorrow afternoon. Stay tuned for more.


Annika said...


Ellen Bloom said...

When they say a trial is supposed to be over in one day, that really means two or three. Have fun.

I, too, kinda' like jury duty. It's a study in human behavior, that's for sure! Hopefully, you'll find a cool taco stand in Glassell Park for lunch!

MonkeyGurrrrrl said...

I *love* jury duty (except for the being downtown at the Crack. Of. Dawn.) And "handsome deputies"?! Uh, OKAY! Take me to the crazy court!

Of course, that enthusiasm may be what got me dismissed the last time I got as far as voir dire. Stupid defendant's attorney. And I was all set to dismiss the charges.

Well, have fun. The work will still be waiting for you when you get back.