In Contempt of Court: While Being in Love

Almost 3 years ago, Jk and I were engaged and planning for a wedding. We were constantly making lists: wedding planning checklists, an engagement registry, a guest list. On one particularly boring list of things-to-do, I wrote at the top something like,“To Do #WhileBeingInLove”. At the time it was a joke, but ultimately that hashtag became the mantra for our marriage. We decided early on that whether life was tedious, ridiculous, or difficult, we would do it all while being in love.

This summer has been absolutely wonderful and totally wild for us. Never before have we had so many adventures and faced so many unknowns. Since easing off social media, I haven’t had the opportunity to share some of those experiences that have made me so grateful for that mantra we began years ago. I thought it would be fun to gather our stories together and feature them as a series of blog posts. Consider this the first in a list of Crazy Summer Things That Have Happened to Us (While Being in Love).

Story #1: In Contempt of Court

The shortest version of this story is that I had a warrant out for my arrest. The true story is this:

I opened a letter summoning me for Jury Duty on Thursday, went out of town on Friday, and revisited my mail on Monday. I sat at my work desk filling out the questionnaire that came with my summons and suddenly I realized that the court date on the letter was the current date on the calendar. It was 1:30 in the afternoon and the case I was assigned to had started about 5 hours earlier. I knew that I had been summoned for Jury Duty, but I didn’t realize that the case would begin 4 days from when I opened the envelope! 

Have you ever known that you should be frantic but you just feel so calm? I sat at my desk for a while cross-referencing my jury summons and the calendar. It didn’t take long to accept that I probably missed the case all-together. I had no idea how to repair the damage; I figured I would just stay at work and await the consequences… Luckily, a few coworkers convinced me that this was a crazy idea and urged me to drive to the courthouse to explain the mix-up. Not ten minutes later, I was rushing to the courthouse, calling my husband and asking if he would bail me out of jail. 
After going through security, I was told to sit and wait for an opportunity to speak with the judge. I sat there for half an hour, preparing myself for a private conversation out in the hall or maybe an invitation into the judge’s office (my courtroom perception was completely inaccurate thanks to television)! In the most embarrassing moment of my life, the judge came out onto the stand, announced that there was a juror who had failed to report for duty, and asked me to come forward to the podium. Like a dope, I stood in front of the judge, lawyers, and the entire court, and spoke into the microphone, explaining that it was simply an accident. 

Ever so kindly (sarcasm here, folks), the judge warned me that the consequences for missing my duties could include appearing at my own court case and being held in contempt of the Jury Selection Act, paying a huge fine, and three days of imprisonment. I felt both important (hello—I had the attention of the whole room!) and also extremely childish, standing there waiting for my punishment. In the end, she abruptly told me that I needed to check my mail more often and dismissed me because I had shown up after all. I made out like a bandit.

Jk felt worse about the fact that I missed out on Jury Duty than he did about me being a criminal. He knew that I had always wanted to serve Jury Duty and we were both bummed about the mix-up. In all seriousness, if you ever get summoned for Jury Duty, put it into your calendar right away and get your hiney to court on time. 

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