I’m so jealous of my husband. He just walked in at 7:19 p.m. after a long day of jury duty.
What I wouldn’t give for a long day of jury duty. To me, it sounds like a slice of heaven – or in the very least, a vacation.
If I had to report to the Montgomery County Courthouse in Norristown each morning, someone else would have to take care of my kids for eight to 10 hours while I executed my civic duty. The feeding, dressing, entertaining, transporting and disciplining of my 5-year-old twins and 2-year-old would be someone else’s problem as I served as a cog in the wheel of our inefficient justice system. And I would pray that the system would prove as inefficient as possible – at least while I was an active part of it.
The judge promised potential jurors during today’s voir dire that they would be out by 4 p.m. but didn’t release them until after 6 p.m. So my husband has little faith in that same judge’s prediction that the case will wrap on Friday, expecting, instead, that the trial will bleed into next week. If only I could trade places with Jeff and secure an extended, court-mandated, no-room-for-wiggles break from child care and household duties. He couldn’t have his phone on after 2 p.m. today. In other words, if I were a juror, I wouldn’t even have to hear about my children’s issues while court was in session.
Second of all, my husband has been selected for a criminal trial. I would kill to be on a criminal trial. (Mind you, I said “on” a criminal trial, not the subject “of” a criminal trial, so I’m using “kill” here strictly in the figurative sense). I would gladly take Jeff’s spot as a juror to digest the details of some sordid crime – a drug case, no less, although I don’t think my husband was supposed to divulge that to me. Entertained by the defendant’s depravity during the day, I could suspend my nightly Netflix viewing of the crime series to which I’m addicted, including “Luther,” “Wallander” and “Engrenages.” Examining real-life junkies under the light of day might induce a sort of crime-fatigue. I might actually find myself switching off the televised depictions of pushers and cops and reaching instead each evening for one of the books stacked on my bedside table.
Furthermore, being on a jury would provide me with rich blog material, and, I’m assuming, some lunch breaks during which I could compile it. Even just living vicariously through today’s jury selection, via my husband’s text messages, has proven fruitful. “There is a lady across the jury waiting room talking loudly enough so we can all hear about her drinking habit,” Jeff texted me at about 10 a.m. “‘I like beer,’” he quoted this woman. “‘When I was younger I didn’t care about hangovers...’
“Same chick sharing the details of her commute,” Jeff texted again a bit later. “‘Used to take 422… Don’t know that back way… I know how to get places, but I’m not familiar with routes and stuff…’”
I’m assuming that this gentlewoman did not get picked to serve. But my husband did, noting, “This is blog material central here,” while I circled the supermarket with our 2-year-old.
Now what kind of justice is that?