Jury Duty and Unrelated Things That Somehow Came Up

I realized last night (when I found the letter stuck in a safe place because I didn’t need to fill the forms out yet) that I am supposed to call in Monday night to see if I have to go in for Jury Duty on Tuesday.

The last time I was called for jury duty was when I lived in California (Northern–they really are sort of like two different states, Northern and Southern California). For some insane reason, they actually picked me (I was trying subtly to get dismissed, even though I am interested in the process). This case not so much, though. It was a gang related drive by shooting. It was the gang related part I wasn’t so happy about. They were getting pretty active were I lived (not as bad as in Oakland or other parts of the Bay Area–I was further North), but still… We all came in the morning of the trial and sat there in the jury box (for some reason I can hear an Arlo Guthrie song coming out of this, which not only dates me, but probably has people thinking, who the hell is Arlo Guthrie? He’s worth checking out. My favorite has always been “Alice’s Restaurant.” I don’t know why I would have found funny as a child, because I didn’t understand the meaning of it then. I think it was just his narration and the fact I could remember parts of it.) Anyway, we were just sitting there is the jury box (this is taking a great deal of restraint, just so you know) and there were some lawyery looking types in the front, and they finally came up to us and said the case had been settled and we could go home.

So, up to this point, that’s been my experience with jury duty, other than having been dismissed from a couple. I happened to have two appointments scheduled for Tuesday, so I had to reschedule those, which ended up involving quite a few more phone calls than I’d thought it would. Then there was the reminder call for my physical therapy tomorrow. I’m not used to talking to so many people on the phone in the morning. I actually had to use next year’s day planner (yes, I am a total geek. I have had next year’s planner for a good month and a half now. Maybe two months. I start to get twitchy if I don’t have it. I like the Paperblanks ones, and they seem to sell out pretty quickly, at least the patterns I like, so it’s sort of become a habit to get it about three months before the end of the year, or as soon as I find out they’re out) to reschedule one of the appointments.

This really isn’t a hugely significant deal, except if I’m chosen to go in, and end up on a jury, I’ll miss physical therapy, thus delaying my return to work (which I will tell them if asked. Maybe even if not asked. Not that I want them upset at me or anything. I found out when I found the papers I was two days too late after the deadline to request a deferment of service). Not too smart to stick the papers aside because I didn’t have to fill the papers out until later.

I guess I do have a point. I am a procrastinator, which was encouraged in school by the fact that I could wait until the last minute, stay up late, write a paper, and still get an A on it. My friend who always had his done on time would get the same grade, but he’d worked ahead to have it finished. I thought, “If I can just sit here and read or play Legend of Zelda, do my paper at the last minute, and get the same grade, why not?” I did have to get better in graduate school. My semester in art school that I didn’t finish was a disaster. I learned that it’s easy to do a paper at the last minute. It’s quite a different thing to have to do a few still lifes (lives doesn’t sound right, but I’m leaving it even though I’m getting the angry red squiggly line). Is it still lives? That sounds more human than artistic. Sort of like at a morgue. It was using a different part of my brain that I wasn’t used to forcing to work at one in the morning.

That whole experience of art school was a little bit of a disaster. I had decided that I wanted to do either special effects (after all, I wasn’t that far from LucasArts), or work on video games. This was when I learned a very important lesson. It’s easier to teach someone who knows how to draw to use a computer than to teach someone who knows how to use a computer to draw. I had been able to draw some in high school. Not fantastically. A step above stick figures.
The other thing I realized pretty quickly was that while everyone else was drawing in their mandatory sketchpads, I was writing. I should have paid closer attention to those signs and quit while I could at least not go as much into debt as I did.

I remember the day I decided I was going to drop out with perfect clarity. I was taking Golden Gate Transit into San Francisco, and I got off at a stop that I thought was closer to my class than the other one I normally used. It was raining, of course–it was the Winter Semester, and the stop I’d chosen to get off the bus at was completely wrong. It went straight up, and was nowhere near the classroom. I stopped about three-quarters of the way up the hill and looked in the gutter to see a drowned rat. I felt a sort of kinship with the rat, because it looked how I felt. I found my way, finally, to the classroom, and that was the last class in art school I attended.

Sometime I should write a post on getting lost. My dad has a fantastic sense of direction. It seems like I would have inherited a little of it, instead of the inner surety that whatever direction I’m facing is North. Before anyone says anything about women and their sense of direction, I have known men who get just as lost, only they won’t ask for directions. I have that problem as well. I truly dislike asking for directions, mostly because I don’t remember them. I could get a digital recorder and pull it out and have them talk into it, but then they might think I’m odd (I have no idea how they’d get that impression).

Just imagine if it were true that anywhere I faced was North. Man, that would give new meaning to global warming and the ice caps switching polarities. I would unintentionally be one of the worse comic book villains in history, and I have to tell you, I wouldn’t want Ironman or the Phoenix coming after me. Or being put in a lab and poked and prodded. No adamantium here folks, move along. Nothing to see.

This has strayed completely from jury duty. I think I could use a helper monkey here. To do the dishes. I despise dishes. They just sit there and look at you when you go into the kitchen. You can rearrange them so it looks like there are fewer of them, but they’re still there. Every. Single. Time. You. Go. In. I drink a lot of tea, and the electric kettle (I should write an ode to my electric kettle, I love it) is about half a counter away from the sink. It’s gotten to the point where the dishes are taunting, though, which really just isn’t nice at all. Sometimes my SO and I sort of hold out to see who will give in first. It’s going to be me this time, because he needs to make fudge for a meeting at work tomorrow, and it will just be easier if the kitchen is clean before it gets dirty again.

I shouldn’t make fun, because I was just talking about directions, and I have made a lot more desserts and things than he has. He texted and asked what he needed. I said, just get the marshmallow creme and get the things off the recipe from that. I think it’s the fact that I went into too much detail about what kind of chocolate to get, something along the lines of “Get Ghiradelli’s, but if they don’t have Ghiradelli’s, I suppose you could get Toll House, because they taste good, but those are Hershey’s, or you could get fair trade chocolate bars until you had enough for the recipe.” He doesn’t understand how I can text so much. I think he’s thinking that if it’s a text, he’ll just get a short answer, but it ends up being like having a conversation with me anyhow. He asked me how many chocolate bars. I was a little rude–I will admit it. I said “Whatever the recipe says, I don’t have it memorized.” I didn’t mean it to sound rude, but I’d said to just follow the recipe off the jar, and theoretically he would be the one with the jar in the store, not me, I’d be home. I shouldn’t be mean. He’s the one out working while I’m sitting here writing this. Sometimes I wonder how he can stand dealing with me. On the other hand, sometimes I wonder how I can stand dealing with him, so I suppose we’re sort of even, just at different times. Right now, though, it’s one of those dealing with me times, so I need to do the dishes. He doesn’t read this, so if he actually does mention it, then I’ll know he did.


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