Jury Duty – Part Two

Alright, so I talked about the whole being a juror thing and that was obviously a snorefest. Now for the funny parts, and believe me there were quite a few… but even they are a bit boring. My apologies.

The first day, as I said before, I got on a jury pretty quickly. I was picked at 3:15… and I know this because I remember looking at the clock and thinking, “If I don’t get picked I can leave in 15 minutes!” and being excited. So the judge announced my name, to my dismay, and the trial began really quickly. Immediately I noticed just how theatrical the prosecuting attorney was. His facial reactions were so hilarious there were times I had to bite my lip to keep from laughing at him. Not to mention it looked like some blind child cut his hair, or maybe someone angry at him, because there were visible clumps missing and stuff. I realize now that the facial reactions were probably part of his stradegy, and it worked. Infact at one point I remember looking over at him angrily scribbling something on a peice of paper, and then his face went back to happy and he put paper clips on each one of his finger tips. Yeah, and I think he was on a caffiene buzz because the guy could not sit still.

The defendant was incredibly happy. He kept watch of all of us, and when we would smile at something said, he would smile at us and with us, but he always had a smile on his face. No matter when I looked over, he was smiling and watching. I just thought he was a smiley kind of person until one of the other jurors mentioned she thought he looked like he memorizing her face, and then the smiling wasn’t so good. That’s probably when good turned to creepy. I started to think about it and it didn’t really add up. The dude was there for 4 drug charges and he was happy about it? Makes no sense at all.

Now for the other jurors. Thankfully there was one guy that was at my table when I’d first sat down in the juror lounge that was also picked, so I had a familiar face, and someone to talk to. When we first went up the room was so quiet that it was like a library or even worse, the bank. In the juror room there are 2 bathrooms and when the first person went in it got even quieter, like people were listening to hear the poor guy pee. I have a shy bladder, so obviously peeing in that bathroom wasn’t going to happen. Not when people were sitting there listening, but it eventually got much more relaxed and nice…. in a boring way. At one point there was a guy in the girls room, and when he came out I asked “How did you like the ladies lounge area?” of course there wasn’t one so the room laughed. One guy (we’ll call him Guy1) said, “You have a lounge?” which, if he’d looked at the bathroom with it’s door wide open he’d have seen there wasn’t anything but a sink and a toilet. The man that was in there said, “No, it’s just like ours.” and I said, “There’s a couch! You just have to go in there and down the hallway.” and since Guy1 still looked confused everyone pretty much kept laughing at his expense.

Then there was sock and sandals lady. Yes, I understand with it being fall that it’s harder to dress for the whole day. Mornings are chilly, afternoons are warmish, and then the evenings are chilly again. I get it, I really do… but this does not give any woman, or man for that matter, to wear sandals with socks. Now, these weren’t just any socks. No, they were pulled up to her knees…. and then she had on a skirt. When I noticed them I wanted to call my friend Meghan so we could laugh but we weren’t allowed to make phone calls… so I sat and watched her groom her pretty black socks with no one to share the funniness of them with.

Toupee guy sat next to me in the jury box and whenever I was bored I would stare at the hair to try to determine where his actual hair started and where the fake stuff began. It was a saucy little number and it made me smile when ever he would sit down next to me.

On my way back from lunch there was giant guy. I was moving along at a pretty nice clip because I was petrified of being the last juror to show up because I’d witnessed the judge go nutzo on the detective for being 2 minutes late when this giant man stepped in my path. I’d had my eyes on the justice center so it was a pretty big surprise when he moved in my way. I smiled and went to move out of his way when he said, “You’re beautiful.” and then I knew he was crazy so I picked up the pace and said “Thank you!” over my shoulder. I wonder if that crap works on other girls?

Last, but not least, there was the stalker. Or, as my mom called him, “Pervert.” As I walked, and again at a pretty good pace, he would jog a little and get even with me, look at me, and then slow down a little….then jog up again. It was the strangest thing I’d ever seen, and I’d wished I could mace him or something.

Sadly, in the end the case was dismissed because the state hadn’t had the time to prepare and make sure he submitted things he was going to talk about beforehand… like the informant, which would have made the case for him. So now a 21 yr old crack dealer is out on the streets again. Nevermind the fact that he had more than a state court would normally see at 15.3 grams of cocaine, that he’d had it in the front light globe area and that he’d had an electric screw driver sitting there beside him. The state couldn’t prove that he knew the crack was up there. It’s not illegal to have the drugs in your car if you don’t know they’re there.

Yay for the war on drugs!

Jury Duty – Part One

Yesterday was my first day of jury duty and I was incredibly nervous. Living where I do I rarely have to go into the city, not that I never have, it’s just not necessary in my every day life. So I was nervous about having to go downtown alone to an unfamiliar place, to do an unfamiliar “job” because I had to. Since my mom can barely manage a moment without knowing exactly where I am we had to do a test run of it on Friday. Of course it had to be at the same time, so she would know what kind of traffic I’d have to face, etc. She decided, because apparently at age 29 I’m still unable to make my own decisions, that I should take the rapid transit into town. Since I’m 29 and I can do what I damn well please, I decided to take the rapid transit….. but not because she told me I should. Shut up.

The first day, all the new jurors filed in (there were about 200 or more of us) and were checked in and given a bright and shiny pin that had “JUROR” in big letters that we were to wear at all times inside. After checking in we filed into the juror “lounge” and I say it in quotes because it was the most drab, uncomfortable room we had to sit in, but at least there were people there to talk to. It was, by no means, loungy. I made my way to the first table I saw that was full all but one seat and started talking with the people at it. Surprisingly, there were no crazy people so I stayed. We were suppose to be shown a horrible “this is your duty” film but the do-hickey was broken and the technical guy couldn’t fix it so we got a little lecture saying “If you need anything, just ask us.” and then she listed the drugs she had available such as Advil, Tylenol, etc. In the lounge you have access to a cafeteria where you can get whatever you want to eat, and also a vending machine room for drinks and snacks and such, and the smoking area which is a balcony outside. All in all, not a great place to be, but if you have to (and you do) it’s not totally horrible and the hours aren’t torturous either. It’s 8/8:15 am – 11:30 am break for lunch then 1:15 to 3:30 pm if you’re not picked to be a juror.

I, of course, was not that lucky. I was chosen in the first jury, second name called. When you’re chosen for the jury there are 2 types of cases and you can tell which one you’ll be on by the number of people chosen. 22 people, it’s a criminal case, and … I believe 16 or 18 people is civil. We had 22 people picked.

I then got to go to the jury room and sit and wait for the judge to call us all in. We got in and went through a period where the judge, defending, and prosecuting lawyers ask you a series of questions called voir dire – which in French means “to speak the truth”. The judge asked me about my job, which was kind of annoying because that’s public record now, and each lawyer asked me a question. The prosecuting attorney asked me what I thought of when he said “war on drugs” and I said “nothing”. I mean, I’m pretty far removed from the war on drugs, not that people where I live aren’t doing them, it’s just not as out there around here (except for “doodie” across the street ’cause I think she’s on speed). Then the defending attorney asked me to give an instance where someone was innocent and said to be guilty, put in jail, and then later they were found to be innocent. I was concentrating on a hang nail when he asked me so my mind went blank and then I thought of Sam Sheppard. Yeah, I’m a dork.

All the people in my row were excused except for me. I was the first juror asked to stay on, and out of the 22 of us there were 13, meaning one juror was an alternate (to be named later). We sat and took notes for about 2-3 hours while a few witnesses were called, went in and out of court while the lawyers argued with one another, and then we were sent home at 5pm. Which was suck.

Tomorrow I’ll write the less technical, funny, and interesting part of jury duty. I got some stories!

One of Those Days

Have you ever had one of those days where no matter what turn it takes, it just seems to get worse and worse? Well today was that kind of day for me.

This time of year is allergy hay fever season for me, not to mention the cold and flu going around, so I either have allergy problems or I have a cold. I woke up with a horrible headache and stuffed up beyond belief, so I took another allergy pill and went back to bed. When I woke up again at 10am I stumbled out of bed and hobbled down stairs because for some reason my ankle hurt me. I was nursing a cup of tea (and whimpering) when my mom came in with a letter from Bob’s (step father) sister Marylyn. She sat next to me and we were joking about how Bob’s facial reactions were getting worse and worse. When he was finished my mom went over and got the letter so we could make fun of it and read it out loud to me as she went along.

Apparently Marylyn thinks that I’m deleting the emails she sends him (which I wouldn’t), and that we’re keeping him from calling her or something. She said that “since your second marriage” their relationship had gotten worse, the problem with that is that they didn’t have a relationship during Bob’s first marriage either. Infact his first wife thought Marylyn was trying to poison her, for crying out loud.

So Bob calls his brother Dave (Bob’s brother Dave, not mine) because in her letter she says that Dave told her something that makes her hesitant to call the house. This, of course, lit a fire with my mom. So Bob’s on the phone with Dave and says that he’s the only one that uses his computer and Dave says, “What about Ellie’s daughter?” meaning me. Why the hexk would I delete her emails? I mean, what would motivate me in that sort of direction? Seriously, that’s not even on my radar of bad thigns to do. I’d much rather stick to peeing in soap and spitting in coffee.

In the midst of all this crap, Bob’s creepy son Rob shows up to gawk at me and argue with himself. As always we have to take him out to eat, but really it’s a great diet plan for me, considering he chews his food like an animal. Every time I catch a glimpse of him eating, which I try not to do because I don’t like vomitting, I wonder why I didn’t bring a trough for him to eat out of. Seriously. I’m thinking about it. He disgusts me, and I’m pretty sure he knows it because he spends his time glaring at me ever since I “accidently” flicked lemonade on his face 20 times. What? Who? Where? Oh… I didn’t know I was doing that! Whoops!

So now, thanks to that “dirty whore” as my mom calls Marylyn, the rest of us will have to comfort my mom and hear about this horrible letter for days and weeks to come. Days and day!Do you know how many countless times today were I pretended to shoot myself in the head?! Thanks a lot, beotch.

Web Looks and Reality

My high school reunion is coming up this Saturday, and no ( don’t hit me too hard Meghan) I won’t be going. With my root canal costing $2000+ I thought the $90 for a meal and open bar surrounded by people (minus my friends) that I don’t want to be with anyway would really be a waste of money I don’t have to spend anyway. Right? Right.

So, because I found this so amusing I thought I’d post, for Meghan’s sake, what the website of the building the reunion will be in posted, and then the pictures I drove by (yes, I’m that pathetic) and took.

The Front

Website’s picture

(Oh, look how happy everyone is!)

Reality

That’s right, they were looking out … not into the nicely landscaped lawns, or a flowers, but a big, ugly parking lot.

Back Patio

Website’s picture

My goodness, is this a beautiful patio with a garden-like setting?

Reality (looking at where the pink arrows are pointing)

No, you get a view of yet another parking lot and a field next to a house (that’s also not pretty).

It’s just a crappy location and really doesn’t even look like it’s used.

On a side note, while I’m posting pictures I thought I’d post a picture of something I never thought I’d ever see again.

Bob is working! He’s not really able to do much of anything anymore, and I sympathize with him, I really do. Unfortunately, when he wants my mom to trim a bush outside he’ll say something like, “I’ll trim that bush tomorrow.” which is Bob code for “You trim that bush.” and it really angers my mom. So the other day he said it and I had clippers waiting for him in the drawer by the front door. I handed him the clippers and said, “Why wait for tomorrow?” and he scowled at me, turned around, and clipped on little branch and said, “I’m too tired.” My mom marched him back out and made him do the whole thing. To prove it I took pictures.

Tough love like that isn’t mean. If he doesn’t use his arms, he’ll lose the ability to for the times when he does want to. Good stuff.

How Clean Are You?

It’s a morning ritual of mine to watch a few talk shows while I wake up with my mom. I make her tea and myself a cup of this vanilla cafe (which I’m totally addicted to) and we sit and watch crap T.V. Well, yesterday morning the Tyra Banks show came on, and normally she talks about such crap that I could really care less and I usually use that time to take a shower. Well this particular day the show was about make up and how dirty it is.


The part circled with an arrow behind the women was the bacteria found on the woman in the brown shirt’s lipstick! (Not to mention, those little wormy looking things were moving.)

As soon as the show was over I dumped everything out of the makeup bags I had. Having worked in the cosmetics department of a department store, I had a lot of free-be stuff that I’ve had since I worked there. Considering I worked there about 4-5 years ago I’d say yeah… they were past their prime by a long shot.

Here are some facts for anyone wondering just how long you’re suppose to keep the makeup that you have:

General Shelf Life of Makeup

Mascara: Mascara lasts 3-6 months and is the most prone of all makeup to harbor bacteria because the wand is constantly being dipped. A general rule is anything that is a liquid has a shorter life.

Concealer: Has a life of about 18 months due to emulsion (the ingredients will begin to separate). Also, remember you’re generally using concealer to cover blemishes, which can be more sensitive and prone to infection than other parts of your face.

Liquid Foundation: You should never use liquid foundation after more than one year. Always use a sponge, and not your germ-laden fingers! If the foundation separates or smells bad, throw it out.

Loose Powder: This item can last for years.

Eye Shadow: Lasts 12-18 months if it is a cream, 2 years if it’s a powder.

Lip Pencil: Can last 3 years due to the wood and wax. Remember to sharpen and cover between uses.

Lipstick: Can hold up for 2-3 years, but if there is a color change or rancid smell, throw it out.

Lip gloss: Don’t keep more than 18 months due to a different formulation chemical composition and the same dipping problem as mascara.

I highly recommend going through your makeup bag and cleaning that puppy out or you might just find something like this….

…on your lips, eyes, or cheeks.

You should also wash your brushes at least once a week with even a mild facial cleanser.

Alright, now that I’ve done my good deed for the weekend, go forth and clean.