30 October 2009

One angry man

I've been quieter of late than I would have liked, and for once not as a result of some climate-destroying jaunt in search of evidence of the near-irreversible impact on our environment of climate-destroying jaunts. Nor have I been occupied for every waking moment with nefarious schemes of demagoguery and empire-building, either personally or as a disinterested observer. Nope, this week I have mostly been involved in that most hallowed of civic duties, jury service.

In an effort to be as impartial a juror as possible I expressly removed myself from the world of newspapers, news reports, rss feeds and the internets in general in the days leading up to and including the service itself, and after three mornings of sitting in a holding pen and waiting for my name to be pulled randomly from a hat by the most unimaginative of bingo callers I have ever seen, I finally was chosen as the last juror on the last trial of the last day of jury selection.


Despite carefully crafting a look over the last three weeks combining the best elements of a desert-island castaway and Joaquin Phoenix on Letterman, I still somehow managed to escape rejection by either the prosecution or defence, and thus took my seat yesterday as the ominous-sounding 'Juror Number Twelve" before being dismissed for the day due to a lack of available courtroom and/or judge.

Thus one much-welcomed haircut and beard-trim later and with the fire of justice burning in my belly I returned to court this morning with my metaphorical judicial blindfold at a jaunty angle and my equally metaphorical scales held high in the air, ready to carry out my civic duty as a proud citizen of this fair land of ours.

Unfortunately over the course of the evening one of my fellow jurors had a change of heart and suddenly decided that he couldn't really do the whole "sitting in judgment" thing, resulting in the Judge being forced to excuse the whole jury and delay the trial for another few weeks. We didn't even get to pick a foreperson or decide who amongst us was going to be the angry one that just won't agree with everyone else, and keeps arguing and arguing to the point that the other eleven are themselves on the point of committing a criminal act of gross violence (though given my track record we can pretty much assume that this would have been me).

Thus I am left this afternoon feeling somewhat unfulfilled, experiencing something of a malaise as a result of this judicius interuptus, as if I have built up all this judgmental energy that now has nowhere to go. I fear for anyone who foolishly asks my opinion today, or calls on me to make a decision. Woe unto the barista who unwittingly asks me "what size cappuccino?"

"Large", I will cry, as the gallery erupts in tears and gasps and the newshounds rush to the row of phone-booths outside, and I cast my eyes to the floor as the enormity of these words weighs upon my shoulders like the burden of Atlas himself, and in the gravel-toned damn-dirty-ape frustrated voice of the immortal Heston I will bellow "and may God have mercy on its soul".



At 6:42 pm, Anonymous Anonymous said...

Kind of lucky, though, don't you think? If you ended up on a jury, I'm pretty sure it'd tip the juridical quotient of your household over some cosmic limit and destabilise the fabric of space-time, or similar.


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