Welcome to my world!

My life's been crazy since my Daddy moved in with me immediately after my mother's death in October 2010. My one and only kiddo headed to college at Carolina at the end of August. So...I lived on my own, for the first time in my life, for a total of a blissful six weeks. Then, I started the parenting gig with my dad. He's a combination of a grouchy old man, a surly teenager and a temperamental toddler. Needless to say, I get very close to the brink of insanity sometimes. I get through life by finding the humor in difficult circumstances. And for some reason, I wind up in the weirdest situations. I couldn't make this stuff up. So I wind up having lots and lots crazy adventures which make great stories to share with my friends. Writing about my life is so therapeutic. My ramblings range from funny to sad to angry (full of cuss words) to sweet. While my focus is dealing with the trials and tribulations of being a parent to my Daddy, I have lots of random, totally unrelated posts. Whatever's on my mind. I love to make people laugh, and I'm happy to think my readers will get my strange sense of humor. And maybe, people who are in my situation will be encouraged. That's all I can hope for...

Tuesday, January 24, 2012

Learning New Things

Darnit, if all that Law & Order Middle-of-the-Night-Marathon watching didn't help me understand some basic things for yesterday jury stint.  The judge made a point of telling us that these sorts of shows are not real.  They're just drama.  As if...

At some point, I realized that I didn't know the difference in a crime, a misdemeanor and a felony.  I remembered the name of a Woody Allen film called Crimes and Misdemeanors.  But I don't think that would be a good source of legal knowledge.  Besides, it varies from state to state, and I have a feeling Woody didn't film that in Tennessee.  And besides, I never watched it.

So, after a little Googling, I figured out that the two main categories are felonies and misdemeanors.  It has to do with the severity of the offense.  I'm not sure who makes that decision - the prosecutors, I suppose.  They key, though, is that a felony is punishable by a sentence of a least one year, and a misdemeanor, not more than 11 months and 29 days.  Now I know.  I think crime is a general term that encompasses both.

That's neither here nor there, though.  I've been trying to figure out which side rejected me.  I have a feeling it was the defense, given The D's career in law enforcement.  One of my dream jobs is to be a jury consultant.  If I had been consulted about this defendant, I would have told him not to wear a black shirt with a white satin tie.  It shouted "Mobster."  But I don't think we have those in Memphis.  Pimp, maybe?  Oh, well.  I figure it must've had to do with domestic violence since they asked lots of questions about that.  If I'd been the lady whose daughter had roughed up her BF and then married him, I'd have asked to speak the the judge privately, too.

At first, when judge asked if us if we, or any of our immediate families, had ever been involved in any way in a crime no hands were raised.  He seemed surprised.  He must've doubted that was true.  I think we were just all shy.  Sooo, when he asked again, it was one big confession.  People were telling about their parents' houses being burgled back in the 70's.  They would stammer and try to estimate how many years.  I wanted to shout, "Just hurry up and pick a decade!"  Or the fact that my wallet was stolen out of my hotel room back before identity theft was cool.  But each little anecdote triggered more.  Finally, we finished, which is when I approached the bench about EV and one other little matter.

Oh, on the subject of Too Much Information.  One of the questions was whether we, or our family members, had ever worked in law enforcement.  I wasn't sure being in Military Police in the Air Force counted, but the judge said it did and asked some probing Daddler questions.  I have to admit, I was proud of The D at that moment.  That triggered a spate of stories about sons and nephews and second cousins once removed who were serving in the military.  I know they were proud, too.  Finally, the judge explained that he didn't care about military service unless it had been as MP.  

Oh, I forgot to tell about the lady who had two sons who'd gotten in trouble for something at some point long, long ago.  When asked when that happened, she said she was 56 and her son was 34 now, so it must've been...ummm...  Finally, the judge did the math.  Like he did when I didn't know how many years ago I'd gotten my CPA license, but I knew the year.  He did the math.  25 years, he said.  I said, "Gee, thanks."  I used a slightly sarcastic tone, because that made me sound kinda old, and I had not volunteered my age.  I also explained that I couldn't do math.  That was the only laugh of the day.  But people were desperate for a little levity. 

And actually, even though I was disappointed that I didn't get chosen, I was relieved to finally be able to go to the ladies' room.  I wish I'd thought to ask about a bathroom break during my little sidebar.  I'm sure I wasn't the only one squirming in my seat.

Well, I think I've exhausted this subject.  I'd be doing laundry and dishes and assorted other chores, but they involve the sewer drain, so that's a good excuse.  Hopefully, Public Works will get here before the housekeeper comes tomorrow.

Over and out...

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