I hate Jury Duty. I've been called to seal the fate of my peers today. Well, at least I've been called to sit in a room with a few hundred of others to sit and wait and be bored to death. But first we have to watch that horrible video of what happens in a court room.
I've been through this twice before.
The first time was on my birthday. I think I had turned 25. All I did was sit in a room. I didn't get called into the courtroom. I didn't get to sit on a case. All that was fine with me, but I was just annoyed that I had to waste my birthday indoors.
The second time I was called to jury duty was 4 years ago. I was called to sit on a murder trial. As inconvenient as it was to my employer, it was pretty interesting. As we deliberated in the jury room, we reenacted the event that led to the stabbing. We needed to figure out, based on the angle of the stab wound, if the thrust was intentional or in self-defense. This was the sticking point with us. Ten of us believed that the stabbing was an act of self-defense. The other two didn't. For a few days we tried to sway the two, but no luck. After a week and a half of the trial, we ended with a hung jury. I was very unsatisfying and sad.
I'm a petit juror today. I have no idea what that means.
The training video is playing now. Corny background music and an overly enthusiastic person explaining the whole process. This is the same video that I saw 4 years ago, and most likely the first time i was here.
I don't know how long I'll be in this waiting room, which means I don't know how long I'll have internet access. But I've brought other things to occupy my time: my journal, my iPod, and my book that I'm currently reading, "A Thousand Splendid Suns" by Khaled Hosseini.
Already there's dissension among the jurors. There's a person who just doesn't want to be in this auditorium to watch the video. She's standing along the edge of the door, and can watch the damn thing, but according to one of the proctors, "she just has to be in the auditorium and have a seat."
Ooh, that woman is such a rebel.
I bet the woman nest to me is reading this as I type.