I spent yesterday morning sitting in a grey carpeted holding pen, breathing stale air and trying not to make eye contact with the sea of humanity surrounding me. The wireless was down, so I was stuck playing Bejeweled on my iphone to pass the time.
Despite the best video California’s court system could muster up, I couldn’t be convinced this was the opportunity of a lifetime. Nor was I buying the assertion that serving on a jury was going to be a bonding experience with my fellow citizens, with whom I would probably end up staying in touch. (Right. “Hey Tom! Remember when we sent that drug dealer to the clink back in ’10? Wow, those were the days, huh man?”)
Had I been selected for a jury, I would have gone in and done my civic duty to be open-minded, fair, and as impartial as I could be. It goes against my highly opinionated nature, though. So after a blessedly early dismissal, I was able to head back home to the police state where I am judge, jury and executioner, no appeals allowed. I like it better that way.
In fact I had my very own case this very afternoon. The plaintiff was one Brody V, an 11 month old canine. The defendant was one Son V, a 4 year old humanoid who stands accused of assault with a deadly weaponlike toy.
According to the plaintiff, at 4 pm he was walking by the defendant, minding his own business, when the defendant reached out with a toy sword and smacked him on the head, unprovoked. The defendant suffered pain, emotional distress, and now fears plastic. He is seeking a bajillion kibbles in damages.
The defendant maintains he acted in self-defense. Defendant claims he was sitting at a table, eating some cheese when the plaintiff approached him and aggressively demanded said cheese. Defendant says he had already been assaulted by plaintiff earlier in the day, and feared for his well being as well as the safety of the cheese plate.
We called a surprise witness to the stand: Daughter V. She does concur that earlier in the afternoon, the defendant and plaintiff were wrestling on the floor when the plaintiff tossed the defendant head over heels and gave him a good tongue lashing. Police reports indicate equal culpability in this event and no charges were filed.
As to the incident in question, the witness reports the plaintiff approached the defendant but was not aggressive in his panhandling. The defendant grabbed his plastic sword, yelled “No Brody, NO!” and whacked him.The cheese was undamaged in the incident.
The plaintiff received immediate medical attention and was determined to be unharmed.
VERDICT: Defendant was sentenced to 5 minutes of house arrest, restitution in the form of 3 dog treats, and loss of the plastic sword.
It’s soooo much easier this way.