Sunday, June 12, 2022

Nothing Is Certain But Death and Taxes. And Jury Duty. (PART 1)

I can't begin to describe my despair last Friday when Hick brought in the mail, and handed me an envelope from The Clerk of the Circuit Court.

"Oh, no! What could THIS be???"

"I'm guessing it's for jury duty. I kept looking for an envelope for ME, too."

"I can't do jury duty! Why do I always get a notice? You've NEVER done jury duty!"

"Yes I did. In St. Louis, U.S. District Court. Possession of a firearm by a convicted felon."

"That was before I even met you! And we've been married for 33 years!"

"I'd love to do jury duty. I think it's interesting."

"My last time wasn't. Just that stupid Eminent Domain stuff, about a property that was a gas station, being taken by the state as highway right-of-way."

"I wouldn't mind it."

"I CAN'T do jury duty! I can't walk from the parking lot behind the annex. I don't know if the courthouse ever got the elevator fixed. I can't climb to the 3rd or 4th floor. I can't stand around and wait with 199 other prospective jurors, to be let into the courtroom and shuffled 10 to a pew to sit and listen to instructions and questions. I won't be able to get up and go to the bathroom every 90 minutes! Besides, the bathroom is in the back hallway by the judge's chambers. It's up a big step, and there are NO handles to help me abdicate the throne! It's IMPOSSIBLE for me to do jury duty now!"

"Well. Maybe you can get a doctor's note."

I read through the letter. The ONLY excuse would have to be a doctor's excuse. I only had 10 days from receipt of the letter to respond through an online questionnaire. Of course I got it on a Friday. So there were two days gone already, waiting for the weekend to pass.

Monday morning, I called my doctor's (Nurse Practitioner's) office. You have to go through the switchboard, and ask for your specific office. At least I got a real person. Who was the RUDEST WOMAN EVER TO ANSWER A PHONE!

She kind of "uh-huh-ed" and "mmm-hmm-ed" me with one vocal cord while listening with one ear. Made me feel like I was asking for refills too soon on a Schedule 4 narcotic. In the end, she said, "Well, I guess I can ask him."

"How will I know? Should I call back?"

"You can."

"How long should I wait?"

"Well, since it's not for a prescription, it will probably be 2-3 days before he looks at it."

"So I should call back in about 3 days?"

"You can..."

What in the NOT-HEAVEN? Did she not listen when I said I needed the info in 10 days so I could fill out my questionnaire and NOT HAVE A SUMMONS ISSUED FOR MY ARREST?


Jury duty is not like a trip to the casino, where I can get dropped off at the door, walk a bit with a cane, then sit down to rest on a cushy stool until I'm ready to walk some more. Nor can I go to a (handicap) bathroom whenever I need to. I am differently-abled than I was when I last served on a jury in 2005. If those conditions could be met, then I would have no problem showing up and hanging around every time I got a notice, to see if I might be picked. I just can't do it now.


  1. If you do not get a note in time, I would send it back saying "I am waiting for my doctors note explaining why I am unable to serve. I will send it when it is available." Pretty sure they would not be interested in arresting you...Hell, they don't put people in jail for armed robbery these days.

    1. I am wondering how much time they allow for "receipt of the letter." Since it said 10 days from RECEIPT, not 10 days from the date on the letter. I was lucky that mine was dated June 2, and I received it on June 3. That NEVER happens!

      The online form DID say that you could upload the letter at a later date, but I was in a quandary. I had to check YES or NO if I had any impairments that would prevent me serving. If I said YES, and couldn't get the letter, then it would look like I lied. If I said NO, then it would look shady if I later added a letter of excuse. Of course I had to swear that I was telling the truth before submitting. So I was waiting to see if I could get a letter before completing the official questionnaire.

  2. Me to her-on-the-phone: I need it sooner than that, I cannot do jury duty! Then I would fill out the online questionnaire and save the page to be sent when I had the doctor's note. Ten days isn't enough time in my opinion anyway, I think three to four weeks notice should be given.

    1. She was so rude and dismissive that I was taken aback, and not my usual DEMANDING self, heh, heh! I also don't think 10 days is enough time. Some people might need an actual appointment to get a letter. And this jury duty isn't until after July 4.

  3. I should have read your reply to joeh first. I see there is a yes or no box to be ticked, if you tick yes to impairments do you still need a doctor's note?

    1. It pops up a little box for a brief description of WHY, but you still need a doctor's note. OR you can appear in person to speak to the judge with a written explanation of your impairment. Good luck getting in to see a judge! And getting there to start with, since you have impairments!