America’s Favorite Court Room Show

Apparently during a government shutdown, the court system remains open for business, and the only reason I know this is because I got a notice in the mail for jury duty. 

You know, if there’s anything good that’d come from government shutdowns, it would be the closing down of the courts.

Crime never takes a holiday though.

I really hate jury duty. I’d rather be forced to watch last week’s super bowl over and over than waste an entire day in Gloomsville.

It’s probably safe to assume almost every one of us has had to go to court for one reason or another, and if you haven’t… well, you haven’t lived! There’s nothing like experiencing the prison-like nuances of each room and corridor of courthouses, or the richness of disdain that court employees display, especially the ones at the counter windows. 

The employee training manuals must have chapter headings like: “How to Waste Everybody’s Fucking Time Effectively”, or “Excelling through Apathy”. It’s always really overweight women in these jobs too, because let’s face it, no one can make a person’s life more miserable than an apathetic fat lady who knows she can wield her power over some sad sack having a bad day.

Yes, I’m making a blatant stereotype…


I am a feminist… chubby, even. But that doesn’t supersede reality based observations. I don’t know about your courthouses, but the ones here in California employ overweight ladies who are pissed off and wanna make your life miserable. Have you ever seen a beautiful woman with a beaming smile and helpful attitude working behind the counter at a courthouse?

Send me the video.

I suppose an argument could be made that these women were made to be miserable by having to deal with large swaths of the general public on a daily basis, many of whom broke some sort of law, but I don’t think that’s true at all.

These women had given up on life long before they resigned themselves to government employ. Something terrible happened to them at a young age; something that made them want to make people’s lives miserable in return, like for instance, forcing them to watch Fox News repeatedly during their formative years while feeding them donuts.

When an adult asks a child what they wanna be when they grow up, no one ever says “I want to work for the court system behind a counter window!” But take that same child, do something really shitty to them, make them believe people are inherently stupid, and violà, you have yourself a future government courthouse employee.

You know what I think should happen? They should be laid off for a few weeks, just so they know what it’s like to feel shitty and desperate (like the rest of us on a court day). When they’re allowed to come back to work, they should have to go through what we have to go through: Receive a summons, a ticket, or a jury duty notice (in their case, a government return-to-work voucher), then fill out a shitload of paperwork they don’t understand. Upon arriving at the courthouse, they take a number, have a fucking seat in a shitty plastic chair in a hideous looking waiting room, and wait for several hours to be called up to the window.

When they finally get called, they should be told they’re at the wrong window and sent down the hall to another hideous looking waiting room where they have to pick another number, and do more waiting. When they get their number called, the person serving them should have acute skills in passive aggression, and take an inordinate amount of time assisting them while displaying a grimace on their face. If they complain, they should be arrested and spend the night in jail for inciting violence.

To top it off, they should be put in the courtroom cafeteria with the meter maids to see who comes out alive.

I’d place my bet on the meter maids.


Published by Clever Girl

Intrepid writer, reader and comedian.

12 thoughts on “America’s Favorite Court Room Show

  1. Jury duty. . . Bah! I’d rather have a root canal (but only because the root canal wastes much less time than sitting in a jury pool all day for a week). Another well crafted offering. 🙂


  2. I’m sorry you’ve had such horrible experiences in court, Clever Girl. I can assure you that not all court employees are as vile as those you’ve described. I’ve been a probation officer for almost 15 years, and for every example of a single bad court officer you can give, I can cite you 10 good reasons they might behave that way. Not excuses, mind you, just reasons. There is no excuse for treating the public poorly, even when the public offends first.

    I don’t often write much about my job, but when I do, it’s usually about something amusing that happened, like the events I describe here:

    Go ahead, I bet it’ll make you snicker!


  3. Did I mention that you have great cheekbones?! And yes, the experience of visiting a government-run space can vary from “that wasn’t bad” to “oh, hell, no.”


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