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Tuesday, April 16, 2013

Jury Duty

**It seemed so petty posting something like this in the wake of what happened yesterday in Boston. It was already written. My thoughts and prayers go out to all of those impacted by the bombing.**

Do you want the dramatic version? Or the tame one?

I feel like being melodramatic; I'm a writer, after all.

Without doing a lot of research, I know that Walking Dead is filmed in Atlanta, and that the city (and surrounding suburbs) are getting more and more attention from film production companies. Georgia is warm, woodsy, muggy, atmospheric, and the people are friendly: for these and what I'm assuming are cost-related reasons, stuff is filming all over the state.

Apparently, the yokel courthouse where I have jury duty looked like the perfect spot to film a movie. It was chaos yesterday morning: semis parked all over; signs directing Extras, Actors, Lighting, Makeup, Breakfast with arrows beneath them were taped to the lamp posts; great sinister spools of cables unfurled over everything; sandwich boards blocking turn lanes; guys in caps and headsets rushing around, utility belts pulling their pants down. I had banked on whipping right into a parking place by the door, and instead, I was circling past vans and wondering what would happen to me if I couldn't find a space and was late. Would they send deputies out to my house? I finally flagged down someone with a courthouse name tag and asked her where to park; crisis averted.

Going into the building, the guy in front of me continued to set off both the walk-through metal detector and the wand the deputy waved over him. Oh my God; what are you doing? What is the deal? The was a penny stuck in the deep dark depths of his back pocket and this little dilemma took five minutes to sort out. I know five minutes isn't long, but how does a man, without a purse or jewelry, need five minutes to prep for metal detection?

During an instructional video from the eighties - complete with jewel-toned pantsuits and MacGyver hairdos - the prospect of actually being selected for a jury and sitting in on a trial started to sound interesting. I'm writing a mystery novel right now, and I do love details and intricacies. I decided this could be fun - and that the courthouse really needed to update its instructional video.

Then began the waiting. This would have been fine - I had one of my very favorite books to read and was absorbed - if the guy one row back hadn't been coughing like he had tuberculosis and moaning and sniffling dramatically about it. I pressed the sleeve of my sweater over my nose and mouth and thought about vitamin C; when he didn't get any attention from this, he draped his arms over the back of the chair next to me, looked at me, and coughed in my direction. Thank you, random jury guy. I've always wondered what it was like to have TB.

As it turned out, they released all of us early, Here's hoping I don't have a hideous respiratory infection brewing and that the rest of the week goes as quickly.

1 comment:

  1. You should have jumped in to be one of the extras in the movie! Exciting times in the "boonies"! Hopefully, you did not get something dreadful from "random jury guy".