janklow’s adventures in jury sitting

at work i work six month bids, and during these last two bids i’ve been called up for jury duty twice, including right now, as in Wednesday, the day i’m writing this. (and yes, i know this means i could have tried to be exempted this time, but i’d rather not, you know, work) actually, technically i was on call Tuesday, but it didn’t start for me until today and that’s that. so instead of doing hilarious and interesting things today and writing about them, it’s time for some observations about our judicial system here in southern Maryland.

-if you, say, have Wednesday-Thursday as your weekend and you’re trying to avoid work, you won’t have to go to jury duty Tuesday, but you WILL have to go on your weekend. i’m not bitter about this or anything, but i have a theory that i will end up going to court ONLY on this weekend. i’ll only get bitter after that comes true.

-for some people, “clothing worn for an office job, or a job interview” means too-short cargo shorts, t-shirts with “Bass Pro Shops” emblazoned on them, and giant bush hats. ironically, shorts and logo-bearing t-shirts are specifically mentioned as things NOT to wear. i, however, feel this ban should be extended to giant bush hats.

-now, i like to read dense books like Thucydides’ Peleponnesian War and Solzhenitsyn’s the Gulag Archipelago III respectively while waiting to be selected (or not) because they make me look smart in the jury room and they have the hot ladies crawling all over me. so generally speaking, i don’t talk to my neighbors in the seats around me much. however, i don’t mind if, say, they want to ask idle questions like “hey, have you ever done this before?” or “are we allowed to leave now?” but i have to say that i mind if you start excitedly chattering to me about the Price Is Right. it’s not even about the Price Is Right; i have no issue with Bob Barker or anything like that. i just don’t want to hear about how GREAT this show is or how can someone BID like that. please. let me read about ancient Greeks and depressing Russians.

-incidentally, if you don’t get selected for a jury, you will get a lot of reading done.

-there’s a part of this “jury video” you watch that is adamant that you shouldn’t investigate the crime you’re on a jury for if, say, you’re on a jury. and i mean ADAMANT. i really wasn’t aware that this was such a serious issue (people really were going wild doing this?), but what i also object to is their claim that you shouldn’t do it because it’s not fair to other jurors. excuse me? i thought the major reason not to do something like that was a) jurors aren’t automatically qualified to investigate crimes out of the blue (excuse me, ma’am, i need to ask you some questions about that murder weapon that was found in your possession. who am i? i’m on a JURY.) and b) if it’s a serious crime, someone might, you know, kill you or at least bribe you.

-i always thought that baliffs were huge (like the guy on Night Court) and there to keep order in the court, but all ours are super-old and backed up by sheriff’s deputies. i will never stop being disappointed by this.

also, i would make some jokes here about people who talk loudly on their cell phones in close quarters with other people, but after the ride to work on a shuttle where some retard was screaming into a bluetooth headset (we heard “I CAN’T HEAR YOU” 10+ times), that joke concept seems… stale? well, i still hate you assholes that do that. you know who you are.

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