Tuesday, February 28, 2006


Yesterday I left jury duty and felt good. I can see the light at the end of the tunnel. It is still a ways away but the end is coming. More of the same during the secret proceedings...ADW (assault with a dangerous weapon), CPWL (carrying a pistol without a license), AWIK (assault with intent to kill).

Drywall was delivered yesterday! Yippie! AND the drywall hangers start tonight (I probably shouldn't get too excited until they actually are on the doorstep). Progress is nice.

Played ultimate frisbee all weekend. It was freezing, but fun!

Friday, February 24, 2006


Not really, but the fire alarm did go off yesterday and we had to evacuate the building. The lack of communication is a bit disturbing. It confirms my theory that if anything actually happens here, we are doomed.

Nothing new to report from the jury room. I am thrilled that after today I have two weeks (and two recall days) left. I can't wait to be away from some of these people.

Thursday, February 23, 2006


So, no drywall. a neighbor's car was parked in front of our house and the (responsible) drywall folks wouldn't haul it over their car. We are scheduled for Monday (our neighbors should be back from the Bahamas).

Jury duty STINKS! We we so busy yesterday. It does make the day go by faster but I actually had work to do (I just started my 2nd online class). A couple of the other jurors continue to annoy. People need to 1) pay attention 2) remember why we are there - PROBABLE CAUSE not innocence or guilt 3) refrain from asking dumb, nosy questions!

Until yesterday the voting has gone the way I voted. I didn't get my way yesterday - hmphh...it is actually ok. It was a case I was feeling quite conflicted about. We are on case 43 now. I am feeling totally numb to it all. Now when I hear a robbery case, I think, that's all? no weapon? no drugs? Oh well, gotta find a way to get through...

Saturday, February 18, 2006


Yesterday was more of the same. I definitely am starting to feel a bit desensitized which is good and bad. I need to make it through the next three weeks but don't want to minimize the crime in the District. For the second day in a row, I had lunch with my friend Rich (he started on a different grand jury on Monday.) It is great to get out of the jury room/building, away from the annoying jurors and have an opportunity to stretch my legs and chat. We'd pick up lunch and sit on the grass in front of the Building museum. The weather was exceptional! (We are back to typical February weather.)

The big news is that the drywall folks did finally show up last week and THEY START TUESDAY!!!! That means, of course, that Dave and I will be spending the next few days packing clearing out the things that we have left in the house. Oh, and finding a place to stay next week. I am really excited. The house renovation has been an experience I wouldn't trade but I am ready for the project to be finished.

Thursday, February 16, 2006


I knit this in a day during the first week of grand jury duty. There is a significant amount of "down time" which is different from "break." We are guaranteed two 15 minute breaks. I equate "down time" with being on-call. You have to be ready to drop everything and listen to cases.

Do not buy or wear Northface. It can be dangerous to your health. I recommend Patagonia. Can't say any thing else due to the secret nature of the proceedings.

The knitting below is make with yarn that my sister-in-law, Sheila, made. Yes, I said made. She carded, dyed, and spun this beautiful fiber. After knitting this much I decided to stop. I want to use bigger needles so you can really appreciate the yarn. Her website and blog can be found at: www.eweniquefiber.com/

This is my latest project (below). It will, one day, be a wrap/shawl. It has more of a pattern (aka pay attention while you are knitting) than I am use to. I like the brainless knitting but given the time I have I thought I would be a nice challenge.

Enough of my fiber content and back to jury stuff...there are some jurors on my jury (1 of 5) that are driving me crazy. I am actually shocked at the amount of blatant disregard: talking, sucking teeth, reading the paper or a book. It is amazing that people will sit there and judge witnesses - you can tell from the questions and tone of the questions they ask. The teacher part of me wants to come out and say something and then I think, it isn't my job, they are adults, yadda yadda. I have started tallying questions (I know, how mature) that the annoying people ask. Today I decided to start playing my own version of Survivor. Each day I will vote off the most annoying person. They will get to come back the next day b/c if we don't have 16 people (quorum) we can't do business. Simple pleasures.

Wednesday, February 15, 2006

family justice

Yesterday Dave was selected to sit on a jury for a trial. No one is sure why he was selected. He mentioned it might be his new haircut. So, for the next few days we will be commuting together. How fun!

Not much new in my grand jury room - more of the same. Lots of reading and knitting. I will post some (knitting) pictures (just as soon as I figure out how).

For those of you following the house renovation project, tonight the drywall folks come to give us an estimate. Yahoo!

Tuesday, February 14, 2006


I learned something yesterday. If you are talking to a police officer before you have been read your Miranda rights they can't use that information directly against you BUT, they can use it on a cross examination. For example, if Joe were arrested for fighting (assault, as we call it) and he was talking with the police (before being read his rights) and he said, "Bob never hit me." Then, on the stand he said, "Bob hit me 5 times," the defense attorney could use the information from the first conversation and ask,"Didn't you initially say to police that he didn't hit you?" I am not sure I explained that well. It made sense yesterday.

Two of my friends started grand jury duty yesterday. DC is pretty small or I know a lot of people. Lots of knitting getting done!

Friday, February 10, 2006


Two days of no drama, district attorneys, cases, and we might even get snow! I have never been so happy for 5 o'clock on a Friday!

Thursday, February 09, 2006


I don't have much nice to say. Yesterday involved draining cases and a lot of waiting. I am already feel like I know more than I want to about the world around me. There are a lot of people in the world that do bad things. I have knit a scarf and a half and just started a shawl. My book, Son of a Witch, by Gregory Maguire is getting good. I wish I had more than 10 minute intervals in which to read.

Tuesday, February 07, 2006


We were worked to the bone today! We heard 4 cases, 3 of which we will return to in the coming weeks when witnesses become available. I learned lots of acronyms for various crimes, called witness into the grand jury room and took pages of notes (which are eventually burned). The one thing I have to keep reminding myself as this goes along is that I do not need to decide innocence or guilt, only if there is probable cause. Sometimes it is easy to get caught up in the evidence of the case. It is still very interesting but five weeks is a LONG time. I am looking forward to watching some brainless television this evening!

Monday, February 06, 2006

One down...

Twenty-six to go. Well, really twenty-eight to go. After the 5 weeks there are two mandatory recall days to complete any unfinished business. Today was interesting. It reminded my of playing "dress up" when I was a kid - like I stepped into a different life. I put on my big girl shoes (which I won't wear anymore - clogs are SO much more comfortable) and walked to the metro with my book and laptop. I ate lunch at the Food Court of the Mayor's Office which is located next door. A very different day than I am accustomed to. I will keep you as posted as I can but I have taken an oath which includes complete secrecy about the cases. I did volunteer to be the Sergeant-at-Arms (I decided this was better than being the foreperson or secretary). I get to call witnesses and kind of keep the schedule. The other 22 people seem nice - quite a mix. We did everything together - we were escorted from our initial place by US Marshal to our Grand Jury Room, watched the orientation video together, went upstairs for pictures together... Only 16 of us need to show up to have a quorum (otherwise we wait...Ugh). There was plenty of down time - I knit a third of a scarf and wrote half of my paper for class :) I figure I should be able to get all of my Christmas presents done by March. I learned more about the justice system today than I even knew existed...DC, not being a state, sure complicates the process. Tomorrow we get our ID badges and start hearing cases. I won't be calling any of you during the day. Since my phone has a camera they hold it ALL day. I think I'll just leave it at home. More later.

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Is the stove on?

Today is a rainy, Saturday morning. The kind of day that where you could stay in bed all day and read, watch TV and nap. I am at work though, closing things out. There sure is a lot to think about. I am certain I have forgotten something. Oh, well, it isn't like I'll be unreachable. My desk is clean, cleaner than it is when I work at it. I think I'll make that a goal for when I return - keep a clean desk. Just a reminder: anyone can read this blog (friends, STUDENTS, etc) so keep the responses clean :)

Friday, February 03, 2006

Not Quite

I had hoped to be able to walk out of here at the end of the day and return on March 11th but I just couldn't get everything finished. Tomorrow I will be spending part of my Saturday getting ready for my 5 week civic duty stint. I think I am just putting off "leaving". It is much easier to do when no one is around. I am getting excited about not having a commute (at least not one where I am sitting in traffic)! A 5 week hiatus from road rage...ahhh.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Packing up

I have been spending the week getting my ducks in a row. Starting Monday I will be spending all day at D.C. Superior Court. I was chosen for Grand Jury Duty (no, you can't get out of it, only defer for 90 days). The idea of not being at work for 27 days is strange. I like my job and will miss the work, my colleagues and the students. I am hoping that this blog will be a way that we can keep in touch. Off to clean my desk.