Real Duty


In life there are certain universal truths. For example, if a job posted on Craigslist promises “a six-figure salary”, you’ll discover during the interview that that includes the numbers after the decimal point. Or similarly, if you walk into an unfamiliar bar and notice that all the men have wedding rings, you know that you’re in a singles bar.

Universal. Guaranteed. Inevitable.

Jury duty is the same way. You only get called when you’re (1) facing a huge deadline at work or (2) you’re deathly ill.

I have a friend who recently got called for jury duty. As if on cue, she started getting a sore throat two days beforehand. By the date she was scheduled to start she was coughing like a life-long smoker and had a full-blown fever.

So, following the spirit of The Law, she tried to tell the judge the truth: she was ill and could barely concentrate. You can guess how well that went – the response she got was similar to when you’re slumped behind the wheel with your bumper wrapped around a tree and you say “Yes, officer, but I only had one beer two hours ago.”

My advice was to fight back. I told her to take a white t-shirt and write this on the front with a magic marker:





And wear it to the courthouse.

Like all smart people, my friend ignored my advice. She stuck it out.

Yes, we have a Supreme Court whose quality is approaching that of The Peoples Court. Since they keep giving things away to rich guys and corporations, we should just sell the naming right to the building (“Welcome To The Wells Fargo Supreme Court”). But the rest of the legal system is the best in the world, in large part because everyday citizens do their part. Unlike our Supremo justices, we regular people still care about each other.

And jury duty can be fun as well. In my friends’ case a guy blew a .079 on a breathalyzer. Whatt’re the chances of that?

So bravo, girl! You’ve done your duty honorably and are now free until the next time you start feeling sick.

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6 thoughts on “Real Duty”

  1. I’ve been put on the list a few times, but never actually called in for jury duty. Apparently, working for a police organization puts defense attorneys off.

  2. I don’t know why, but even if I move to another county the courts find me and I get that dreaded questionnaire in the mail. I guess that’s my punishment for registering to vote. Maybe if I get called I will wear a tee shirt saying, “I am certifiably insane and I kill judges.” That will either get me excused or arrested.

  3. I think if you said, “Can we do the death penalty before the trial?” or “Can we pick what type of death penalty?” you might get excused. Just a thought!

  4. Yes it is a marijuana leaf. It’s a marijuana leaf on a t-shirt produced by a multi-national company!

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