Thursday, January 29, 2009

Flu Shot...I miss you

For the last two years I have jumped on the bandwagon of the flu shot, but thought it was totally unecessary. After all, for the first 25 years of my life I had never had one, and I had made it through those flu seasons just fine. Well, this year I thought about getting it taken care of, but the opportunity never presented itself. In the past, I had done it at a health fair, or while at a doctor's office for another purpose. Well, mark my word, I will never wait for the opportunity to present itself again...I'll be finding a flu shot as soon as one is available.

On Sunday I started feeling that tickle in the back of my throat that spelled disaster. Mind you, a cold would be a disaster for me at this time of the year. So I grabbed my trusty Airborne, and 3 bottles of water. 6 hours, 2 Airbornes, and 3 bottles of water later, I wasn't feeling any relief. So I figured I would go home, take some Nyquil, get to bed early and deal with the sniffles in the morning. HA!

First of all, the Nyquil didn't cut it. Never before have I had such a hard time sleeping while drugged. So I got out of bed to get in the shower and nearly passed out trying to do so. I called into work and said "I'll see you tomorrow."

It's now Thursday and I am still camped out on my couch. My mom, bless her, has stopped by my office twice to pick up stuff for me to work on. I was going to go in yesterday, but was still breaking fevers and certainly contagious. Didn't think my office would appreciate me bringing that bug in! Then I got up to shower this morning...wanting to get back to work...and nearly passed out again.

I feel like such an invalid. And to make matters worse, I keep trying to get work done, but I kid you brain is mush! I have completely lost my ability to think.

And let's not forget...class started last week, so I've missed a week of class only 2 weeks into the semester. ARGHHHH!

OK...I'm done venting, and this has tired me out. So I'm off to take a nap.


Wednesday, January 7, 2009

My Civil Duty

So of course I can't really say much, but I have finally, at age 28, been summoned and selected to jury duty. And I must say, my mom who has never been called, is more than a little jealous!

I am kinda torn between 3 different emotions here:

1: Do I really really want to know about all the bad stuff that is happening? I don't even watch the news consistently because nobody has anything good to say.

2: This is going to be really cool, I'm going to learn a ton, and I'll be serving my state and country in a way that not everyone gets to.

3: Spring is my absolute busiest time of the year at am I ever going to make this work?

Well, there is an oath of secrecy that says that I can't tell ANYONE ANYTHING that happens in the jury room. Technically I could tell you what jury I'm serving on, but I don't think that would be the smartest move since anyboy could ultimately get to this blog. I'm sure you get it.

So instead, I thought I'd just educate you a little's some of the stuff that I have learned just during my juror "orientation" if you will.

Juries, at least this one, are literally chosen by RANDOM. We're talking names in a hat. Some levels pull from registered voters, and some pull from those with driver's licences. I won't get into what I think about this...

So here's the selection process:
Everyone who was summoned shows up. Those people who feel they have a reasonable excuse for not serving share those excuses, either in public or private council. Then those reasons are taken to a judge who decides whether the excuses justify exception. The jury director returns to the room with the names of those people still in the running on pieces of paper. No one finds out who was excused and who wasn't...this keeps people from "borrowing" other's excuses if they want to get out of service in the future. Then the jury director mixes up the names...literally. In this case he used one of the bingo wheels. He then pulls out the appropriate number of names, and that's it. Telling you how many people I'm serving with could lead you to determine what I'm serving can do.

There are two different types of juries.

First there's the Grand Jury. Grand juries determine whether a defendent should be indicted or whether there is not enough probable cause to do so.
Then comes the Pettit Jury. Pettit juries are trial juries (the ones we all think of when we think jury). You know, "we find the defendant..."

Then there are the different levels:
Metro, State, Federal, etc.

And juries at different levels serve for different amounts of time, and have different monthly requirements, etc. etc. So I can't say exactly what kind of time commitment this is or one could deduce what jury I'm serving on.

Let's just say that I'm going to be stretching myself thin for a while.

But in the end, emotion #2 is really what I am leaning towards the most. Yes, it's going to be a time commitment, and yes I may learn of some things that I would rather imagine are not happening. But the bottom line is, they are happening. And I have an opportunity to fulfill my civil duty and my constitutional right to do my part in making sure that the justice system works in the way it was designed.

I feel quite privileged to be serving on this jury. And I have definitely learned that I work better under pressure, so I don't really need to worry about the stress level of jury duty, full time work, full time school...and that thing I call a social life!

I would encourage you, if you are ever summoned, NOT to listen to your peers who will tell you that you should try to get out of it. I could have written a book of ways to get out of jury duty with all of the "suggestions and tips" I got prior to showing up at court. If everyone were to use these excuses, we would destroy the system that we have now. And although it is certainly far from perfect, it still strives to protect the innocent, afford anyone and everyone a fair trial, and consider all innocent until proven guilty. We can complain all we want about the flaws in our justice system, but at least it's designed correctly. Many other countries don't even have that foundation to build upon.

God Bless America!!

Dramatic, yes...The way I really feel...ABSOLUTELY!