Thursday, May 11, 2006

Dismissed - Wednesday 4/10/2006


My parting shot. One of the big concrete balls in the courtyard of Lancaster Superior Courthouse.

I didn’t even get to the voire dire process. It was an interesting looking case and I actually would have liked to have served, even though I would have had to use my comp and vacation time to do it. It was very emotional at times to listen to the things the jurors had to say about their brushes with crime.

One man actually brought me to tears. He was very unhappy, uncomfortable and ashamed, but said that ultimately he thought that it would take more convincing for him to believe that the defendant was not guilty because of his ethnicity. The prospective juror had been jumped and beaten by a group of African American students in high school. It wasn’t easy for him to admit.

One of the judges came to the jury assembly room and talked to us. He told us that only six countries in the world guarentee their citizens a trail by jury. U.S., Canada, U.K., Ireland, Australia and New Zealand.

With all it’s troubles, I’d say that this is a big count in the U.S.’s favor. I’ve been called for jury duty 4 times and have served on one jury. People really do take the responsibility seriously once they are there and try to do their best to do the right thing.

Wednesday, May 10, 2006

Lancaster Superior Court - Tuesday 5/9/2006

Yup, I’m on jury duty. Nope, I didn’t remember to call in to see if I had to report until Tuesday morning…after I’d driven 45 miles to work. Sigh. So I had to drive all the way back, plus the courthouse is another 20 miles north of my house. Thank goodness I could talk on the phone with my mom the whole way.

I talked to the guards behind the information desk a little during lunch. This building is 3 years old, but it looks brand spanking new. Very nice. But they have to sit in this big glassy lobby and they said it’s hot in the summer and cold in the winter. Wasn’t built by anyone who knew the extremes of the high desert. It gets as hot as the 120s in the summer and as low as the 20s in the winter.

What's really weird about this court house is it's location in the middle of Joshua tree spiked desert. And the main entrance doesn't face the road! I suppose, given development rates out here, in twenty more years this will make some kind of sense. Right now it just seems like they're making it pretty hard for anyone without a car to get out here and support a family member.

Welcome to L.A. County, which boasts the largest county court system in the United States.

Flirt - Monday 5/8/2006


This is the quail that flirts with Dodger from the roof of our garage. Not a great shot, but the one I was compelled to take this day.

He likes it! Sunday 5/7/2006


Dodger likes his new toy so much that I couldn’t get a shot without blurs. But the little movie I took of him playing turned out well.

Meet Hoover - Friday 5/5/2006


Just realized I missed posting Friday’s photo.

This is one of the ground squirrels who lives under our deck. We’ve taken to feeding them Dodger’s leftovers in an attempt to keep them out of the bird feeders.

The reason we call him Hoover should be apparent.

Monday, May 08, 2006

Dredful Men - Bonus Friday 5/5

I posted a different photo for this day, but I was looking back, and I really liked this. These two guys were enjoying the afternoon outside of the coffee house. Amazing dreds.

I have this feeling I should know their names.

Tippi Hedron is _not_ dead. Saturday 5/6/2006

Not that we saw her or anything, when we pressed our lenses through the fence above Shambala, her animal preseve, but she’s still doing press releases and is performing in an upcoming spoof of The Birds…with Suzanne Pleshette, no less. I was only concerned about this because some one on the train said that Tippi was dead.

We were astonished that our little Kodak digitals got such great shots, all the way from the road above the preserve. This photo isn't cropped, and we were about 100 yards from this fellow. Shambala is only about 5 miles from our house. We must make reservations and take the tour from ground level. Check it out for yourself at

Okay, here's another thing I heard on the train, but I don't know if it's true. A guy said that the mansion pictured below (taken from Vasquez Rocks--D and I went on Saturday) is owned by Justin Timberlake. He said he knew this because his friend owns the company that installed the copper tubing underneath the heat the driveway in case of snow! This is one long driveway, folks.