Redneck Review

Monday, August 08, 2005

Civic Duty

Saturday morning I had the pleasure of traveling to the county
courthouse for jury duty orientation. First time ever. My sister has
done it three times, and has never been called for a trial. I hope I
am so lucky. I don't like things to interrupt my routine. That would
mean I had to write out understandable lesson plans, and turn
my students over to a substitute, who would spoil them, and then
I would have to train them all over again. My students would
miss me. Seriously, my students like me. What's not to like?

My official letter said to be at the 3rd floor of the courthouse
by 9:00 am SHARP. It was capitalized like that. Being the anal-
retentive goody-two-shoes suck-up that I am, I arrived around
8:10. There were already about 10 cars there. Those people
went in, but I waited until 8:30 to make my grand entrance.
I rode up in the elevator with a spindly, fragile, little lady about
70 years old. "I've never done anything like this," she said. I
don't know if she meant ride in an elevator, go to the courthouse,
talk to a hillbilly mom, or leave her little shack with 47 cats.

We entered the courtroom, and were directed where to sit
by a female sheriff's deputy, who looked and talked like
comedian Kathleen Madigan. (Kathleen, I know things didn't
work out last summer on Last Comic Standing, but I think
you should play it safe and stay in St. Louis. Do not go south
of Lindbergh. There are no streetlights beyond that point.)
Deputy Gal performed her seating job like a rent-a-cop parking
cars at the County Fair. All she needed was a flashlight with a
long red thingy on the end. She made the second row scooch
over to make room for us. "Seven to a bench," she commanded.
WooHoo! I got the end! Thanks, Spindly, for showing up the
same time as I did.

People straggled in. Deputy Gal filled 3 rows on our side, then
3 rows on the side by the door. That's when the creep arrived.
He looked like Hannibal Lecter, but without the charm--and
without the hockey mask. He was wearing a plain dark-blue
t-shirt tucked into gray slacks, with a black belt, and gray
Wal-mart tennis shoes. He was short. His graying hair was
combed straight back from his forehead, and greased with
some type of product. Probably fat rendered from the people
he had eaten and made lampshades and garments out of.

Hannibal stepped in the door and sat down on the end. Oh,
no no. He was supposed to move down next to the first lady
in that row. Deputy Gal said, "Please move down, sir. We need
seven to a row." He gave her a look like he wanted to eat her
liver with some pinto beans and a nice warm can of Busch. He
walked over and left about 2 feet between himself and that lady.
Hannibal squinted at Deputy Gal's chest. "Where's your badge?"
She was not at all flustered. "It's broken, but I have a name tag.
Tracy Jones." (She gave her real name as far as I know, but I
can't recall it.) Hannibal took out a pen, licked the end, and
wrote it on his jury summons letter. More people came in.
Deputy Gal said, "Let's move on down. Seven to a row. "
Hannibal wouldn't move. They only got six in that row.

After everyone arrived, all seats were full, plus the jury boxes,
and some chairs up front for the "alleged" criminals and lawyers.
People stood all around the walls of the room, and down the
middle aisle. Somebody said there were supposed to be 240
people. A man deputy said, "You fellas who are like me, and like
to wear the cap--you really need to take that off in here. Any of
you men who feel uncomfortable sitting while a woman stands,
feel free to give her your seat." One man did. Deputy said, "Take
it, Ma'am. This doesn't happen very often."

The two circuit court judges, one man and one woman, came out
and explained the procedure for being called for a case, and how
to check if it was still scheduled, and how it is virtually impossible
to be excused unless the doctor says you can not serve. Then we
were given a pamphlet, and set free around 9:20.

Tomorrow: Be very afraid if you have these people on your jury.


  • At 11:54 PM, Blogger Rebecca said…

    HI Hillbilly Mom,
    That second paragraph is a pisser. I home you don't purge yourselfd though by blogging about a case, or letting us all know that DeadPanAnn is really a murderer, and you convicted her, out of spite for her blog.

  • At 12:15 AM, Blogger Hillbilly Mom said…

    I don't think I'll get Deadpanann's case, since she is in Mississippi, and outside of the jurisdiction of our circuit court. Not that she would HAVE a case, mind you. Right Miss Ann? Nothing you've been keeping from us, is there? We know about the lawnmower incident already.

    I really hope I don't get a 55-gallon barrel killer case. Redneck Diva would hound me for the details. That's one thing you don't have to worry about, Bec. 6'2" is too tall to fit in a 55-gallon barrel.

    Do you really think I would convict someone out of spite? Not for a blog, but maybe if they messed with my Sonic Diet Cherry Coke, the elixir of the gods.

  • At 8:34 AM, Blogger Daisy Mae said…

    This guy my hubby works with always gets out of jury duty and has never had to even drive to the bloody court house. How? I have no idea. He drives a BMW though so that might be a clue.

  • At 9:08 AM, Blogger Indigo said…

    Hello, Michele sent me today. I've never been called for jury duty, but my hubby has twice already.

  • At 9:01 PM, Blogger Hillbilly Mom said…

    Something is up with how people are selected, I think!

  • At 1:34 PM, Blogger Redneck Diva said…

    My husband got called once for the wrong county. Go figure.

    When he and I were first married they called me. There were several people I knew there and we had a grand ol' time. I got picked to go to the pickin' room, but never actually sat on a jury. I got paid for the three days I was there, though. And considering that we were both unemployed - well, let's just say that the young Diva couple ate more than just free cheese that week.

    I hope you don't get the 55-gallon Killer either. Because yeah, you know I'd drive you bonkers for the details. I mean, there's a special bond there since it was my mother's vivid, paranoid imagination that concocted him in the first place.


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