October 30, 2007


Ahora 103007.jpg
I'm chopping wood over here.

This painting was a scrape off until I saw what was underneath and liked it. Now, it's like a ship coming into port, slow and steady.

Meanwhile, I've been called into jury duty. What a mundane mandarin legal system we've built. And yet it does seem noble even when, and perhaps because it is lavished on some bunch of knuckleheads acting the fool. I figure that this is all I can write about this at the moment, so commandeth our judge. She is simultaneously stern and sweetly jocular, an interesting character who is aware of mediated ideas of the justice system in our heads and she took the time to correct for it. Today is the second day and I get to learn this day if the next two weeks of November will be consumed by a whodoneit.

The trouble is that I was planning to fly to New York early November and civic duty might blow that plan away. (I've already bought the plane tickets.)

...aaaaaaand I've got to finish that blogpost about the Murakami show. That requires some serious head wrapping, that one.

UPDATE: I pled professional hardship. The judge jumped in, eyes on eyes: "Why didn't you say that in the beginning?" My response: "Missing a trip to NYC didn't seem to approach the level of hardship that you conveyed in your instruction." I mean, people were getting out based on weddings and pregnancies. She looked to the lawyers --they had been sorting twelve from over seventy five jurors, jockeying for a jury that might favor their side of the case-- and everyone knew that they had yet to comb through twenty more...

"You can go."

As I walked down the immense hallway of the fifteenth floor of the Superior Court Building, my feelings were mixed. There was in me the impulse to skip and sing for the blessings of sweet freedom. But there is this duty thing that I've just ducked out on, and despite the sorry fact that our justice system was being wasted on apparently lightweight hooliganism, this whole experience was a significant part of the friction that our society is placing against our natural tendency to regress to the tribalism that is gangster life in America. Some kid shot at another kid in a car one night. No one got hurt apparently. I wouldn't like to see a young lad get swept away to jail, losing any chance of entering normative (modern) society. I also wouldn't like to lend any energy to the dynamic that condemns youth to the life of the savage in the midst of all the plenty of 21st century progress either. Jury duty is a pain in the ass, but ultimately it is a noble one.

Posted by Dennis at October 30, 2007 7:12 AM

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