Friday Frenzy

Professional Plan BFirst, this is my new motto! Second, I’m scrabbling like crazy trying to get COWGIRL’S SWEETHEART up to snuff and those all-important first chapters back to Mr. HEd. Why? Because that mid-July deadline is looming and we need to get the beginning nailed down before I write the rest of the story.

But here’s the rub. I’ve been subpoenaed for jury duty starting Monday. Yeah. Really. And ya know? I really don’t mind doing my civic duty if they’d actually…you know…LET me do my civic duty? This is the second time in the past couple of years I’ve been tagged. I went like 40 years without ever getting subpoenaed.

Here’s what my interminable days at the courthouse will be like next week:
Arrive in parking garage about 7:45. Spend 10 minutes getting through the metal detectors/security checkpoint. Report to jury room no later than 8:00 a.m. Try to find a seat on the back wall where I have access to a wall plug.

Judge will show up about 8:30 to give us the 4-1-1. About 9:00, jury pools will be drawn and marched off to various courtrooms. They’ll be questioned, probed, rejected, or seated. Rejects return to the jury room to wile away the rest of the day.

Get dismissed sometime between 4:00 and 5:00 p.m. Fight “rush-hour” traffic home. Get up and do it all again the next day. All frickin’ week.

Now, here’s the rub. There’s not an attorney in this county who will sit me on a jury. Why? 1) I’m married to an attorney and know most of the judges and attorneys in the bar; 2) I have served as chief bailiff of a district court, deputy marshal and marshal of the state Court of Civil Appeals; 3) I have a background in law enforcement; 4) I’m a published author (heaven forbid I get on a jury and then write a frickin’ book about the trial!!! Really?!?)

But will the judge excuse me? Oh hell no! The administrative judge knows I won’t get seated but he’s a bit of a sadist where the county bar is concerned. See, the last time this happened, I sat there all week and finally got seated on a Thursday. For a murder trial. Where the defense was bad forensics. Yeah. What’s on my resume? Technical Crime Scene Investigator. *raises and waves hand* Uhm…forensics–gathering and analyzing. Yeah, good times. The DAs asked the judge to excuse me for cause. He refused. The defense attorneys asked me if I could recognize mishandled evidence when it bit me in the arse (or words to that effect). Well, d’uh! Oh yeah. Defense wanted me there. DAs had to “spend” a preemptory challenge (there are a limited number of these) to get rid of me.

The judge hearing the case was also the administrative judge. Would he excuse me from duty? Oh hell no. I had to sit there the rest of the day and come back on Friday. *headdesk* *headdesk* *headdesk*

Ah, good times. NOT! I’m prepared this year. I have contest books to read. And I’m tempted to wear a tee that says: Careful Or I’ll Write You Into My Book (and then kill you off). Lawyer Guy’s office partner said he’d post bail for me if I did. 😉

So anyway…Y’all get a break next week. What little computer time I’ll have will be directed toward work instead of play. Dammit.

Who has plans for the weekend? And what are y’all doin’ next week that I’m gonna miss out on?


About Silver James

I like walks on the wild side and coffee. Lots of coffee. Warning: My Muse runs with scissors. Author of two award-winning series--Moonstruck and The Penumbra Papers, Red Dirt Royalty (Harlequin Desire) & other books! Purveyor of magic, mystery, mayhem and romance. Lots and lots of romance.
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6 Responses to Friday Frenzy

  1. Janet says:

    Wow – that’s some system! We get a letter calling us up for jury duty – and we need to fill in the particulars and send it back. Within those particulars are questions like: have you ever slept with a lawyer? OK, not that exact question – but questions that will weed out people like you so they’re not wasting your time, and theirs. My mom was called recently and she answered “NO” to the question about being a Canadian Citizen and “YES” to being over 75. Sent in the letter and Bob’s your uncle – done!

    Sorry you’ll have to sit there all week – we’ll miss you! Good that you will get to actually work (somewhat) while you’re sitting there twiddling your thumbs.

    No plans for the weekend – nothing for next week either. Hoping for some sunshine 🙂

    • Silver James says:

      There are statutory reasons for being excused. I don’t qualify. There’s a limited jury pool and depending on the number of cases, TPTB get really stingy. That “sleeping with a lawyer” made me laugh. Back when I was bailiff in my hometown district court, a woman was really pissed the judge wouldn’t excuse her before the jury term started. She showed up and got seated on the first jury of the day. When asked if she knew anyone involved in the suit, she said in a very loud voice, “My best friends sleeps with the judge.” Which was technically true. Her best friend was the judge’s wife. But the way she said it? Ho-boy. Yeah. We cleared the courtroom, she was chastised and threatened with contempt. I called the judge’s wife, who proceeded to berate her best friend, the gal was excused and then we had to decide if the entire pool had to be excused, all the trials postponed until a new jury pool could be subpoenaed. We finally had Mrs. Judge come down to the courthouse. While my judge was in chambers, I introduced her to the jury pool, and explained the circumstances. Mrs. Judge (an attorney!) assured the jury that her BFF had seen the error of her ways and was truly sorry. ALL the attorneys on the docket then polled each jury member (with the judge back on the bench) to see if what had happened had “tainted” their view in anyway. It was a charlie foxtrot of EPIC proportions :roll:.

  2. You’re lucky Oklahoma let’s you bring things to plug in. The last time I got called for jury duty (in CO), we weren’t allowed to bring electronics… or coffee… those bastards. Of course, I only wasted one morning there, so not a HUGE deal. I did get a notice last November that I was picked for the jury pool here in MO – but they have a weird system here where you’re in the pool for six months during which you could be called at any time. They never called me, so I guess I’m good for another year. :shrug:

    No Silver for a week is gonna suck, but it’ll make it that much better when you get back. :hugs:

    You won’t be missing anything here. (And if something happens I think you need to know, I’ll email you.) Writing, reading, home improvements, yard work… big fun.

    • Silver James says:

      We can have electronics in the jury room. In the courtroom, they have to be turned off. I plan on bringing my earbuds so I can listen to iTune on my iPhone and read. I’ll take a notebook to scribble in if I get inspired to write. Usually, people want to…visit. *shudder* Small talk. And we all know how you and I feel about that! 😉

      And Awwwwww! I’m gonna miss y’all, too! I’ll do quick scans at night before bed to keep up with what y’all are doin’ but probably won’t comment or “like” or stuff. 😦

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