LooseCrew-JeffO: My Week Has Been Murder


Ramblings of an adventurous guy living in Denver and playing in the mountains.
For my trail adventures, visit my Trail Bum blog

Thursday, May 07, 2009

My Week Has Been Murder

I've been on jury duty all week. The last time I was on a jury, it sucked. This time lived up to the memory, plus much more.
Monday, it took them from 8:30 until 5:30 just to pick the frickin' jury!
So the trial actually began Tuesday.
They told us the trial would probably be over my Wednesday. Then when they were through presenting evidence and witnesses, it was late Wednesday and they said "we're actually ahead of schedule". How is that? We hadn't even begun deliberating and it was end-of-day Wednesday.
At least the deliberations didn't take long, but it still had us out late Thursday 5:30pm.
I think we made the right verdict, but there's so often gray areas. We were certain this guy is very dangerous. Witnesses were all scared to look his way. He'll appeal, because he has nothing to lose by appealing. If he gets out, I hope I see him before he sees me.

I hated the whole process, but I especially hated the gutless hypocrites that refused to serve. They're willing to live in this country where our laws, infrastructure, etc. allow them to live relatively safely and prosperously. Soldiers, cops, and firemen are willing to put their lives on the line. And these spineless people aren't willing to go the last few feet to close the link. I feel like shipping these people to Afghanistan or Somalia to see how they like the "freedom" of anarchy.

What's this have to do with running?
I didn't run all week long. I rode my bike Tuesday. Since the jury kept me late, and my son had a concert at school where he knocked-'em-dead, I didn't bother with the DTR Thursday run.

So that was kind of the plan. Before Collegiate Peaks, I ran hard Tuesday and Thursday and ruined any chance I had at a great 50-mile PR. My plantar faciitis blew up and is now significantly bad.
By not running all week, I've hoped it will be healed well enough for a good Greenland 50K Saturday. If the plantar faciitis starts to unravel, I might just back-of-pack this race - or quit. This race is a freebie for volunteering at others. It's not like I have $100 in registration down on it. Jemez 50M is in a week. I REALLY want to be in one piece for that.
So I hope to have a good time this weekend and not destroy myself.


At 9:05 AM, Anonymous Dezinerdave said...

I thought I would leave an entertaining story about my own personal adventures in jury duty for the amusement of your ultra-running blog readers.

Shortly after we moved here and I renewed my driver's license I immediately got a letter drafting me into service. Having just arrived in town, I had no idea where the courthouse or anything else was located, but the town isn't that big and when I got there I saw a professor we know from the college, so at least I had someone to talk with. Except the place was so stifled with an atmosphere of authoritarianism and decorum that no one was saying a word, they were all sitting as quiet as mice. Armed sheriffs and marshals roamed the hallways. After about 20 minutes of Adventures in Sitting, the court clerk reads a list of names and announces that those people were free to go. The rest of us were automatically, somehow magically, turned into the day's jurists! Off we went, ushered into the chamber behind the bench where we were given a few instructions and then trooped out to sit on the fancy wooden chairs of the jury box. The judge waltzes in with the appropriate air of sternness and royalty and we are introduced to the plaintiff and defendant: a woman who had stepped in front of a car in a strip mall parking lot and the hapless guy who hit her. We listen to both sides of the story for a couple of hours and then get released for lunch. It starts snowing. We return to hear the closing arguments and are whisked back to the secret chamber for our decision. We are given the instruction to select a foreman and come up with a Yay or Nay answer - no gray area! I sit at one end of the long table where a small pot of coffee and a cheap box of donuts sits and look at everyone who are anxiously looking out at the falling snow and I finally say, "Has anyone ever done this before?" A couple of people timidly raise there hands, so I say "Well, why don't one of you be the foreman?" They stared at me with huge eyes like I had just threatened to kill them all. One woman says, "Well, why don't YOU do it?!" so I say, "Okay; are there any objections?" All of them start nodding their heads vigorously with a look of relief on their faces and suddenly I'm in charge!

It turns out that the day of the accident, two and a half years previously, it was raining and the woman was leaving a laundromat and was adjusting the hood of her rain coat and stepped out right in front of a guy in a pickup. The impact knocked her backwards and the vehicle ran over and pretty much tore off her foot. The guy got a ticket, even though it wasn't really his fault, and his insurance paid for her subsequent hospitalization and surgery to re-attach her foot. Then lawyers got involved. Lawsuit! Go for the big bucks! She was asking for an outrageous amount of money in civil court and probably would have gotten it except for two things: the instructions from the judge for a yes or no and the fact that Big Dave was the new foreman!

I convinced the rest of the jury that what had happened was a tragic accident, that the guy had already been through enough with the ticket and probably loss of car insurance, when she had clearly walked out right in front of him while not using appropriate caution. Shit happens, why does she deserve the Ultimate Payday for that? Why ruin this guy financially and make him pay a bunch of greedy lawyers for the rest of his life? We all agreed that it would be nice if his or her insurance company could be forced to ante up a little more for her convalescence, but the instructions were to either give her the huge wad of cash or not. We chose not. Justice was served!

At 9:34 AM, Blogger Nick said...

Sounds like jury duty was a blessing in that it kept you from getting out there and stressing the PF.

Take it easy at Greenland, and remember if you need to drop an event the fees are all sunk costs now.

At 1:19 PM, Blogger Alene Gone Bad said...

Jeff you have my sympathy for the jury duty enslavement. You picked the short straw.

Good luck at Jemez. I look forward to seeing you at Estes Park. Longs Peak is still looking very white from here...


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