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Doing my civic duty (sort of)

I felt a sense of impending dread at approximately 5:01 each evening for the past two weeks as I had to call in to see if I was selected for jury duty.

Not knowing from to day to day was a big part of my trepidation. I was unable to schedule calls or meetings with clients or promise I would get them something by a certain date. More worrisome was that I drop Jordan off at school four mornings a week, at a time that would be too late for me to make it on time for jury duty. Plus I am with Jordan most of the day Wednesday, save for the few hours she is in school. So Brian, too, was unable to schedule some site visits since he would need to pinch-hit for me. Two weeks seems like an awfully long time to have to put your life somewhat on hold.

Fortunately, my company pays people who serve on jury duty. For others who are not so luckily, I cannot imagine what they would do if they missed several weeks of pay. I could not help but think of the single parent making little money to begin with and then ending up a long trial receiving only the $40 per day. It seems awfully unfair.

Every time I called in and heard "At this time, you are not selected," I let out a sigh of relief, sometimes accompanied by a fist pump or a little yell. When my final time to call in came this past Thursday, I figured surely I would not escape without coming in at least once. Yet, I did just that. My service is over.

I feel a little tinge of regret that I did not get to perform my civic duty, although the end of the message said, "We appreciate your serving as a juror for the United States District Court," so apparently the court thinks I did my duty. Part of me was half hoping I would end up on a trial and have some good story to share. But the other part of me feared I would end up on this century's OJ Simpson trial (not literally; that is going on, on the other side of the country). I have to say, playing a part in deciding someone's fate concerns me. I am just not sure how I, someone who over analyzes everything and worries (obsesses) about the silliest things, would have fared.

So no 12 Angry Men for me. Maybe next time.


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