Thursday, March 18, 2010

Karma's Sense of Humor

Some of you might remember my post a couple months ago about Zilla's call for jury duty. I commented on his inability to sit still for five minutes straight and remarked on his frustration with the entire process. Basically, I laughed at him.

He promptly returned the favor when I received my own summons (my 2nd in 2.5 years) a few weeks ago. Seriously, he called my cell and cackled - something the man has never done before in his life. I swear this is entirely his fault. I'm half convinced he pulled aside our circuit court clerk and convinced him to send me a summons.

The interesting thing is that my father was called for the same date. He ended up not serving but it turns out I knew a couple people who were in the pool with me. My BIL's boss was in front of me during our questioning for one case. On a break he came up to me in the jury lounge and said, "You must be Beth's sister." I knew who he was but was seriously surprised that he knew who I was. When I asked him how he told me my giggle had given me away. Apparently, my sister and I have the same laugh. *shrugs* Who knew?

Actually, aside from the fact that I spent most of the week fighting a nasty cold, the experience wasn't all bad. I managed to entertain the court and potential jurors with tales of my life. During voir dire one of the lawyers told me I'd lead an interesting life. So totally wrong. It just so happens that their questioning required me to tell them about my writing, my day job, our work as an expert witness, my stint with a criminal defense attorney, Zilla's lab explosion and my treetop canopy tour in Canada. Needless to say I was struck from that jury.

But the most enjoyable moments were in the jury lounge. I met several fun and interesting people. I found a few new readers and passed out several postcards for our upcoming reader's luncheon. I really hope I see some of my fellow jurors there in May.

Have you ever been summoned for jury duty? Did you enjoy the experience? Did you sit on an interesting case?


P.S. Congratulations to the winners from Vicki's guest blog. Catslady gets Blonde with a Wand and Jean gets Chick with a Charm. Please send your information to to claim your prize.

P.P.S. Congratulations to Chloe who won Kristi Gold's book from yesterday. Please send your info to to claim your prize.


Jane said...

I've been summoned for jury duty a few times, but never got picked to serve on a jury.

Maven Linda said...

I loved jury duty. I've been called once, got picked for a trial once. I was even the jury foreman, but it was a slam-dunk case and we spent more time arguing over who would be the foreman than we did on deciding innocent or guilty (it was a drunk-driving case, nothing earth-shaking).

Jean said...

I was summoned for federal jury once. I did not want to go because I was working full time then and had lot to do. Once I got there, however, I wanted to get picked (aka WIN). I did not get picked and they settled the other pending cases out of court.

Well, that was boring.

Linda Winstead Jones said...

I was summoned once and ended up on a murder case. It was interesting, and I ended up using some of the details from my time in the courthouse (NOT from the case) in a book set in Huntsville.


Playground Monitor said...

I've never been called. End of story.

Instigator said...

I ended up on a civil case - will contestation. It was interesting but really sad because this family was just torn apart by it all. (although they were already dysfunctional before it all happened). We ended up staying until 7:30 one night in order to get a verdict. It was a difficult case to decide. Took us 3 hours of heavy duty arguing in the jury room.

Smarty Pants said...

Don't say that out loud, PM! They'll hear you!

I refuse to say it aloud. They'll find me.

PM's Mother said...

I was called to for jury duty once when I lived in North Carolina, but because I worked for a newspaper the attorney for the defense did not want me on the panel. I guess it was because I could read. However, I knew the sucker was guilty (he was convicted.) They should have just asked me and saved a lot of time.

I have "aged out" and will not be called now.

(word verif "howcnoi" as in "How now brown cow."

Liza said...

I was summoned for federal jury duty once, but it was in a different part of the state so I didn't have to serve.

Maven Linda said...

Hey, Fates! Smarty Pants has never been called to jury duty!

(SP -- You'll like it. Honest. Think of the fodder for future books :-) But I don't think you need to worry, because if the Fates ever listened to me, thinks would be much, much different.)

Maven Linda said...

Make that "things," instead of "thinks."

catslady said...

Thanks for the win :)

I got called over 20 years ago - twice, but at the time I had to very young children with no one to care for them and I didn't have to go.

Currently my 23 yr. old got called but she moved 2 hrs. away for college and got summoned here. She doesn't live in a dorm and lives there all year round but she has no real proof. Her driver's license is still her home address as is her tax info and because she has now moved to an apt. of her boss (mother with 2 kids) there are no leases and the bills are in her bosses name. She already posponed it once because of finals. She doesn't mind going if it's just a few days but somehow I don't think it's really legal lol.

Smarty Pants said...

Thanks, Linda!

I got summoned once, when I was in college. Because I was more than so many miles away or whatever, I was dismissed (ignore that whole glitch with the bench warrant). In theory, you should be able to just tell them or give them documentation of her registration and that should be enough to get her off the hook.