Adventures in Jury Duty, Part 2:
So like I mentioned in part 1, I had a crush on the hot court stenographer. I know, she was literally paid to hang onto my every word, but I loved her dancer’s posture (“long-limbed like a Modigliani”), and the way she rolled her eyes at Natty Lite Lawyer’s pathetic, stumbling attempts at getting the jury pool to reveal a salient bias. Also, girl rocked that pencil skirt. That’s the whole truth, nothing but.
I was eventually cut from the jury, for apparently being too swagged out. I’d like to think that I would’ve been a good juror, but I found myself second-guessing myself a lot. I can barely find two matching socks, much less sift through testimony to find the truth— the interpretation of which could potentially result in the ruining of lives.
Seeing that none of us remember anything purely objectively anyway (this drawing was done once I was let go early from the jury pool and found a long afternoon stretching before me), we were instructed to disregard a certain amount of granularity and discrepancy within witness testimony. And not being experts on decyphering body language or facial expressions, we were told to rely on our “good common sense” to arrive at the truth. But above all, we were told to be the juror that you would want, should you one day find yourself sitting in the defendant’s chair.
That made the most sense to me.
It sounds kind of dumb, but I’d take it further even: be the friend that you would want as a friend. Write the stories that you would want to read, and make the art that you want to see.
Got summoned to jury selection today. A room of 4,000 completely random strangers is an absolute dream for sketching; unfortunately this was one of the most efficient bureaucratic procedures I’ve ever seen and we were pretty much in and out.
The presiding judge gave a little talk about the importance of rule of law, and how trial by jury has been passed to us from the Greeks, on through the Magna Carta, and codified in the Constitution.
On the way out, I overheard a woman complaining into her phone about how we would have gotten through it quicker if the judge hadn’t blabbed about “all that stupid shit.”