Good morning and greetings, Perry Mason fans. About a month ago, I received the following notice in the mail: SUMMONS FOR JURY SERVICE. Now, I was hoping for CONGRATULATIONS, YOU HAVE WON A MILLION DOLLARS or YOU’VE BEEN CHOSEN AMERICA’S NEXT TOP MODEL, but in retrospect, the notice for jury duty ranked a close second or at least took home the bronze.
Now, as we all know, the right of a trial by jury is a privilege afforded to every citizen in the U.S not currently residing at Guantanamo Bay. Personally, when I’m thinking privilege, it’s more along the lines of meeting a President Obama or bringing joy to a sick child, not being judged in a courtroom by a group of my peers, most of whom wish they were elsewhere. This right to a trial by jury is guaranteed by the Constitution and the NBA, where caring happens.
Nevertheless, I was prepared to perform my civic duty, so I picked out something from my Clarence Thomas fall collection and headed down to the court house. We were first directed into the jury assembly room, where prospective jurors were greeted with a luxurious spread of hot hors d’oeuvres, my favorite being the little quiches in the shape of gavels. It was a nice way to say hello although the stuffed mushrooms were a little overdone and the bailiffs ate most of the shrimp.
We were then called out by name and directed to head over to Department 7. I was thrilled that the woman who did the name calling pronounced mine correctly. It’s the same feeling I get when I go to a doctor’s office for the first time and when asked on the questionaire, “what do you like to be called?”, I always answer “Brad Pitt, or sometimes “George Clooney.” It’s my way of giving back.
We were then warned by a Sheriff’s deputy that the following items would not be allowed in the court building. Knives of any size, pocket tools, screwdrivers, whiskey sours, scissors, knitting needles, pine needles, mace, pepper spray, pepper steak, handcuff keys, nail files, wallet chains, fast food chains, forks, glass bottles and inflatable life rafts.
Then it was on to the courthouse, where we then sat outside the courtroom before being given the magic words to enter. As I strolled through the courtroom doors, I immediately spotted the long-haired defendant, looking very dapper in his jailhouse khakis. He was looking around and smiling like a jaybird, or maybe that’s jailbird. He was seemingly thrilled that all these people had come to pass judgement on him. Either that, or he was just a lunatic. I then wondered, what crime was this gleeful soul accused of and did I remember to put the parking pass on the windshield of my car.
A distinguished-looking, white-haired judge then welcomed us and starting off by thanking us for appearing to fulfill our civic duty. And then before you could say “Judge Judy, “jurisprudence” or “Dear Prudence,” his honor declared that “the parties had agreed that they no longer required the services of a jury so we’ll see you in two years.”
Well, the joy in the room was overwhelming. I hadn’t seen that many happy people gathered together since McDonalds introduced the McRib sandwich. I was back in my car and headed home before you could say “will the defendant please rise.” They say justice is blind. I say, every once in a while, the blind squirrel finds an acorn.
So now that the verdict is in, let’s move on to this week’s photo funhouse. I was going to feature a sunset that I shot back in October that had greatness written all over it. But then on Wednesday morning, this sunrise came along and moved to the front of the pack. Unlike in poker, a full house sunrise beats a royal flush sunset.
I had been up since 3:15 am that morning, working on my doctorate on the causes and effects of enormous tv viewing by middle-aged men. When I looked outside at 5:50 am the sky showed great potential, much like I exhibited back in my junior high basketball days. So I headed down to West Cliff and when I arrived at the coast, I was greeted by a beautiful orange and gray canvas of November clouds. As the creator and co-star of Sunrise Santa Cruz, these are the kinds of mornings that make me it all worthwhile. Well, that and being able to find my car keys.
Along with my trusty golden retriever, we proceeded to Its Beach. It felt good to be in the sand shooting away, as this was the first classic sunrise of the fall season. By 7 am, the sky was a whitish gray and you would never have known that there had been morning majesty in the air. And that is what Sunrise Santa Cruz is all about, capturing those moments and bringing them to this blog. Well, that and being a comedic forum for anything that flows through my stream of conciousness.
So let’s bring on the late night humor. “It’s interesting what former presidents do when they leave office. Bush is now working as a motivational speaker. And if you want to be motivated, who better to turn to than the guy who invaded the wrong country and started a depression.” -David Letterman “President Obama planted a tree on the north lawn of the White House this week, in a spot where Bush planted one that did not take. Apparently, nobody had the heart to tell Bush that his tree was actually a coat rack. ‘I’m going to go water my tree!’ ‘Whatever you say, Mr. President.’” –Jimmy Fallon “Some bad news for Sarah Palin. I don’t know if you heard this, according to a recent survey when asked, 7 out of 10 people said Sarah Palin is not qualified to be president. 7 out of 10. Yeah. Even worse, the question was, ‘Are you happy with your long-distance service?’” –Conan O’Brien
“Abdullah Abdullah just quit next week’s runoff election against Afghanistan’s President Hamid Karzi. Abdullah Abdullah said, he was just following in the footsteps of his role model, Palin Palin.” –Jimmy Fallon “Yeah, no runoff election in Afghanistan. Apparently a second election would be way too expensive to rig. So Abdullah Abdullah says he is pulling out because he wants to spend more time with his wife, Paula Abdullah. Abdullah Abdullah may be out of the race, but they say in four years his idiot son will be on the ballot. That would be Abdullah W. Abdullah.” –David Letterman
“Do you believe it’s been a year since Barack Obama was elected president? Amazing, huh? Well, actually, there’s been some changes. His new slogan is now, ‘Yes, we can, but don’t hold your breath. The White House has approved a new plan to pay — they’re going to pay members of the Taliban to change sides and support the U.S. And if it works there, they’re going to try it with Fox News.” –Jay Leno “President Obama has made a stunning announcement. President Obama has approved a new plan to pay members of the Taliban to switch sides and support the United States. Yeah, apparently he’s promised them 72 virgins and full dental coverage.” –Conan O’Brien
So that’s our pre-Veterans day report. Shot another gorgeous sunrise yesterday morning on the final day of the Coldwater Classic down at Steamer Lane. It was epic conditions as the swell was up and waves were pumping. And congratulations to go out to Derek Jeter and the New York Yankees for winning their 27th World Championship. It just goes to show that, in the words of the Beatles, “I don’t care too much for money, money can’t buy me love,” but it can sure can help purchase starting pitching and hitting. We’ll catch you in the end zone. Aloha, mahalo and later, Bronx Bomber fans.