Tuesday, September 02, 2008

7 Things: Jury Duty

My jury duty experience is limited to DC and once in Maryland (where I was never even empaneled).
1. I realized as I arrived for jury duty, that while I had read my summons, I had made a number of assumptions about the room based on my last time serving, and had not allowed for the possibility that the room had moved or any such things. As it turns out, that was not a concern, the room is in the same place. The business center is still tiny.
2. One thing that did change, there is now wi-fi. Woot!
3. They are however still showing the same fuzzy how to be a juror video hosted by Renee Poussaint, from back when she was a local anchor. (I say this with certainty since she still was a local anchor back when I first saw the video.)
4. I clearly don't know everyone's reason for being in a courthouse today, but I found the varying styles of dress interesting. (The jury summons does specify that appropriate dress is required. I have no idea if others involved in cases are given similar instructions.) In particular I saw several pairs of raggedy shorts, quite a few jeans, and one bare (and adorned) midriff.
5. I was asked to my job title on the jury survey. Apparently my use of the word consultant was entered into the system as construction, which I found quite a deviation from benefits, until I figured out how the mix-up occurred.
6. Jury duty always reminds me that working downtown must be so cool. Someday I will make that happen for me. (I did have one job where the office was downtown, but I was a contractor who worked primarily at other locations. Interestingly enough, part of that office is now a bar.
7. I find the selection process fascinating, in part because you, as a prospective juror, only get to see part of it, not knowing what conversations the lawyers and judge are having about you or others. I have been on a number of panels, in my time, both for civil and criminal cases. Unsurprisingly, criminal panels take longer as the vetting is more involved.