It's Monday in Australia (sadly we get them before most other countries) and each one seems to last a week, especially since becoming a mum. Today's week-long Monday was spent in the juror's waiting room at the courthouse. Even as insanely busy as I am, I'd prepared myself to serve (willing to give up the week but a longer trial I'd need to reconsider, as I am INSANELY busy). Of course, I never got called because the defendant pleaded and the lot of us were sent home (with huge sighs of relief from most). But I'd been ready and mostly willing!
I wanted to fulfil my civic duty and all that, but there's also the experience of it. Us writers are all about experience. It fuels writing. The waiting room alone was a marvellous source of inspiration, such as the cool Asian chic with short hair, high boots and tight snakeskin dress, which made me wonder if she normally looked that tough or had picked the outfit to avoid being chosen as a juror (a thought I'd entertained myself as I looked at my collection of temporary tattoos while thinking about all the work I'd need to catch up on at work). There was the guy in dark glasses, baseball cap and goatee trying his best to look like a terrorist (too obvious, dude) and the other guy in baseball cap and dark glasses sitting next to me and watching a Dexter marathon on his laptop. Please.
There was the college kid (who looked way too clueless and who I'd not want on my jury) and the older businessman in full suit and tie, clearly stating he needed to be somewhere else, and the middle aged business man (I could tell despite the lack of suit) who was all prepared and gung ho for the occasion, wearing his best 'casual' outfit and leather carry bag (it looked far too new for him to have an opportunity to wear it much).
And me? I was clearly going to be jury foreman. The woman who tried to cut in line? "To the back of the queue," I told her, and I had a quick rebuttal to her weak arguments. The older lady next to me seemed relieved that someone had stood up for what was right and true, justice and all that (the older lady was the perfect juror by the way, with a reliable face and an underlying edge of toughness, like she'd come straight out of a courtroom drama).
All for the best, I suppose. I would have made a terrible juror. I'm too weird.
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