21 November 2005

My Civic Duty

Multnomah County Courthouse

A couple weeks ago, I was summoned for Jury Duty. I thought here's something potentially interesting, and figured it might be a blogworthy experience. You know, the whole 'doing my part for justice' and all that.

'My part for justice' consisted of waiting around the Jury Room all day waiting to be called for a panel selection. I didn't even get called once. I think I was 0-for-9 or something on the day. Only a few things happened that were of note.

First, one of the selection groups had to come back because they were 'contaminated'. Apparently, the attorneys and the judge left the prospective jurors alone in the courtroom with the defendant, who started talking to them about the case. The bailiff corrected the situation, but too late, so they had to send them back to the jury room and draw another random group of jurors.

Second, I did some walking around near the courthouse on my lunch break. It was what you might call a brisk autumn day - very breezy, cool, but sunny. After a brief lunch of yakisoba at Happy Bowl, I wandered around the surrounding blocks, since I had some time to kill.
Nice day for some photos, and the shame of it was I only had my camera phone (so I apologize for the picture quality) and not my 'real' camera.

Here are a couple that came out alright. First one's of Portlandia. There's a nice plaque across the street from the building (mere feet from where I took this picture) that explains how she's the 2nd largest statue of her type - the Statue of Liberty being the largest. Portlandia is roughly 1/3 the size of Lady Liberty.

And the other is of the Arlene Schnitzer Concert Hall's huge "Portland" sign. Apparently, this used to be called the Paramount Theater.

Anyway, they let us go finally sometime before 3pm, which was not a moment too soon. My battery in my PSP was just about dead. And I don't have to worry about being summoned again for 2 whole years. I'm sure I'll have a spare battery by then.


Online Wong PoKér Hu said...

I have never been summoned for a jury duty all my life. I think it will be exciting especially if the case is handled by the state court. I witnessed some of the juries during the Martha Stewart case and I thought that they became instant celebreties. The pressure is there, but the fun will never cease.