Getting Back.

So even though I was called for jury duty I was ultimately not selected to serve. What I did do was spend the entire day in a courtroom with about fifty other people while lawyers questioned potential jurors, excusing one after another, never calling me. At one point a defense attorney asked the people in the jury box, “How many of you are familiar with Star Trek?” and they all looked baffled as though this was something they’d never heard of and I thought, oh please, if I’m ever charged with a crime please let there be at least one Trekkie in the jury. It was a pretty grueling process, or maybe it was oatmealing since it left me feeling pretty flat, or porridging since the jurors all seemed so thick, but that’s another story. Toward the end of the day, after more than five hours of questions and excuses, one of the clerks said, “Damn, I’ve never seen it go on this long!” Lucky us.
Getting to jury duty was easy–I went to where I normally work and caught a bus downtown. It was easy because I could catch any bus going downtown–they all go to the same bus depot. The buses departing the depot, on the other hand, all go in different directions so I had to catch the right one to get home. And normally that’s easy, but right now the Music City Central bus depot is being completely renovated and everything upstairs is completely shut down except for the donut shop because they have priorities.

Anyway this meant that the regular departure stations and times for the buses, especially the couple of buses that would get me home, are completely changed. I had to walk all around the block to try and figure out where to go. I couldn’t even get help at the temporary customer service kiosk which is designed with an oceanic theme even though Nashville is in the heart of a landlocked state.

At one point one of my buses stopped at a red light while I was standing on the corner. I waved to the driver and he shook his head because, you know, it’s not like bus drivers just go around picking up people.
I had no problem with doing my civic duty but once it was over it seemed like the difficulty getting out was just adding insult to jury.

13 Comments

  1. Mila

    Full circle, mofos.

    Reply
    1. Christopher Waldrop (Post author)

      The wheels on the bus go round and round and somehow found my way back.

      Reply
  2. grace

    I was curious what happened with jury duty. Now I am curious if you have any thoughts on trying to avoid it in the future… 😛 On a positive note, at least you didn’t have rain while you were “exploring the city/bus lines?

    Reply
    1. Christopher Waldrop (Post author)

      Luckily it didn’t rain although it was pretty overcast. Even pretty and overcast at times. And having watched the people who got called and then rejected I’d say give confusing, ambiguous, and contradictory answers to complicated questions like, “Where do you work?”

      Reply
  3. mydangblog

    Maybe they asked about Star Trek because they would have transported you home. Another opportunity missed…

    Reply
    1. Christopher Waldrop (Post author)

      The attorney who asked about Star Trek got dinged with objections over relevance and he clarified that he was making a point about whether we can read someone’s mind…but yeah, maybe I missed a chance to find my home planet.

      Reply
  4. Red

    Wow. I’m really curious if knowing Star Trek would get a person on or off the jury.
    I’ve only been called once, but because I’m so connected up with people in law enforcement and people in insurance, I was immediately excused. Lucky me. I would have been happy to do it. Never got another chance though.

    Reply
    1. Christopher Waldrop (Post author)

      The funny thing is I understood exactly what the attorney who brought up Star Trek was saying, the point he was making, so if I’d been in the box I probably would have been selected, as long as the opposing counsel didn’t reject me. The case was pretty unpleasant, though, and that’s putting it nicely so I’m glad I did get out of having to look at crime scene photos.

      Reply
  5. Arionis

    So is the jury still out on these bus depot renovations?

    Reply
    1. Christopher Waldrop (Post author)

      The jury is as hopelessly deadlocked as the upper floor, although the one thing we can all agree on is that it’s a good thing the doughnut shop is still open.

      Reply
  6. Jay

    Oh man. I’m almost disappointed we won’t get to hear more about this jury experience. I love hearing about these weird American experiences! (Obviously we do have juries here in Canada but since we are a much much MUCH less litigious society, they’re pretty rare, and it’s very rare to get called)

    Reply
  7. Ann Koplow

    You’ve been selected to serve us with your peerless posts, Chris.

    Reply
    1. Christopher Waldrop (Post author)

      Serving with peerless posts is a responsibility I take very seriously and I’ll do my best to return regularly with a thoughtful, well-reasoned verdict.

      Reply

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