Tuesday, March 08, 2005

Inside the Jury Room

What a group. It seems to me that my jury is a little more intelligent than your average jury. Three men, the rest women, even the alternates. Stilettos to sensible shoes, it's a pretty age-diverse group and as we spend more and more time together, personalities are starting to emerge.

Some of the jurors are chattier than others. Here are some of the topics of conversation that they have initiated in the jury room:

One juror's involvement as a juror on a trial a few years ago
. It involved pimps and prostitutes and offers of blowjobs. Who knew blowjob was one word? Microsoft Word, that’s who. Okay…already this story is giving us more information than we need. Could we just call it oral sex and gl0ss over it, thank you very much? We were clearly interested in hearing about this case, but once the eighth word out of her mouth was blowjob, we changed our minds. She is about 65 years old and is clearly discomforting most of us.

Fun times trying to make your own breadcrumbs.
Then this very same woman, who by now assumes she’s the most interesting person in the Jury Room, starts laughing out loud…LOUDLY. Naturally she has to share what is so funny with ALL of us. She’s reading a recipe for bread pudding…not inherently funny, I agree. But, this recipe reminds her of something that is just SO funny, according to her. I’m not counting on it, but remain quiet and just smile…sometimes even I can be a diplomat. She tells us all, in great detail, of the time a recipe called for breadcrumbs and she thought, well, darnit, I’ll just make my own. So, she bought a loaf of white bread and put it in the Cuisinart and…oh you’ll never guess what happened…it just turned into a glutinous mass. End of story. She could barely spit out glutinous mass, she was laughing SO hard. I found it interesting that I had finally found the one person to whom your basic crappy sitcom is aimed. Stupid me, I used to think the target audience was 13 year-old girls.

A woman with very big, brassy, frizzy hair (who happens to be a psychotherapist at the VA and should get a new hairdresser) who called the Judge’s attention (at the end of Day Two) to the fact that the clocks in our courtroom were three minutes fast and that SHE set her watch and home clocks to NPR and should SHE change her watch to be the same as the court’s, even though SHE knows it’s wrong?

Mean Employees in the Main Room for all Jurors.
This very same woman complained earlier of the attitude of the workers in the Third Floor Room for all jurors. It all stemmed from her wanting to get her parking pass stamped during the afternoon break and not when we are dismissed at the end of the day. She didn’t like ‘their’ attitude. ‘They’ were unpleasant and not forthcoming or friendly. WHO GIVES A FLYING FLIP??? I mean Jesus Christ on a Bicycle, since when do government employees who aren't earning much more than minimum wage have to be pleasant? Just for the record, they were pretty nice whenever I talked to them.

Infraction, Infarction.
A couple of the attorney’s keep mispronouncing key medical terms. I can’t figure out whether it’s intentional or not. I know one thing for sure. They’ve misread this jury and trying to appear all hokey and homespun for our benefit is just a waste of time. A big waste of time.


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