“There are no Jury Trials scheduled this week. All Groups are dismissed – your service is complete. Thank You!” Thank YOU!

I know, I know. I should be eager to do my civic duty. But I have been called sooooo many times. The procedure here in Washtenaw County is:

  1. A prospective juror receives a “questionnaire” and is threatened with all manner of gloom and doom if it isn’t sent back by a certain date. This part has improved in the last few years and I was able to complete the “questionnaire” online.
  2. If they select you, you receive (some [random] time later) a summons to appear on yet another apparently randomly selected date. That is, if you are not the Grumpy Growler, you do. He received a “questionnaire” a couple years ago but I do not remember him ever kvetching about having to serve. Maybe he folded, spindled, or mutilated his “questionnaire”?
  3. You cannot “get out” of jury duty in this county. You are allowed ONE (count it) postponement. If the NEXT date you are called to serve is also inconvenient, you are out of luck. Even if you are (say) a college student who lives out of town for all practical purposes.
  4. But… (a bright spot!) A lot of times there are either no trials scheduled or there is a trail trial scheduled but the legal beagles are using the threat of a trial to encourage the miscreants agree to settle out of court.

I lucked out this time. No trials are scheduled. Thank you god or whoever. I have had to go down there and sit on previous occasions. Me, who HATES to WAIT! You SIT with a bunch of other people in whatever room they feel like stashing you in and the judge du jour gives a little speech about how important you are and blah-de blah-de. I’m okay with that except for the time there was a flabby old pompous-ass judge who yelled at the [very nice and professional] woman who was checking jurors in for something that was obviously beyond her control. I wanted to tell that old windbag to take a hike. Fortunately not all of our judges are that arrogant.

That incident was a number of years ago and I didn’t have a laptop yet but I had a cell phone and I know that I had my cell phone with me in there and so did many other people. Nowadays you cannot take that kind of stuff in there with you. There was a security desk back then but I think they were only checking for I dunno maybe weapons? Nowadays? I’m not sure I can take my iPhone or iPad or laptop in there with me. Y’all may know that might be a problem… The last time I had to sit down there, I worked on a school prodject on my laptop. I’m not sure what has changed since then. Certainly no one has deliberately flown a plane into a skyscraper since then. So why the increased security?

I don’t want to veer off into my own not very well thought out ideas about “homeland” security tonight. I think I prefer to spend the weekend basking in the knowledge that I can do whatever I want on Monday, which I guess means I will go to work. Because they are paying me, don’tcha know…

3 Responses to “Haaaaaallelujah!”

  1. Margaret Says:

    Oh, YAY! I’ve gotten excused from jury duty each of the two or three times they’ve requested me. It’s not that I wouldn’t like to do it, but that I can’t get a substitute who would do my job, thus the students would suffer. That’s the story I give them anyway. Trying to lesson plan would be brutal is more like the truth.

  2. l4827 Says:

    I too have been recently summoned and will soon be checking if I was one of the many called, but few chosen …. :-).

  3. Pooh Says:

    Margaret, one of our high school algebra teachers was summoned for jury duty. She tried for a postponement because a) she’s a teacher and the state-wide and federally mandated test period was coming up, b) she’s a nursing mother and c) she would be happy to serve in June or July. No dice, and the case ran 4 weeks. I was her sub for the first three days, and the plan appeared to be that I would sub for the duration of the case. I picked up the high school monthly newspaper last week and read the following.
    “Algebra teacher, R.W. was called for jury duty and will be out for 4-5 weeks. She leaves the students with substitute Anne Regenstreif.”
    Hey, I’m mentioned in the dispatches! Wait, I’m in the Concerns part of the “Kudos, Concerns, and Kicks in the Pants” section. That’s not good.
    Well, at least they spelled my name right.