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Friday, May 12, 2006

The Jigsaw Cowboy

Although the reply form I sent to the courthouse was soaked in vodka, I was not excused from jury duty, so I spent the entire day doing my civic duty yesterday. Early in the day, thirty people were chosen to participate in jury selection or, as I like to think of it, "the reward challenge" - the reward being the chance to get the hell out of that room. (Please do NOT tell me what happened last night on Survivor - I haven't watched the tape yet!!)

Anyway, I was not chosen in the random drawing, (because I never win drawings) so I just sat in the jury room listening to podcasts. Every 20 minutes or so I would get up and wander over to the window and look out on the street. Pressing my face against the glass and watching people on the street, I felt like Anne Frank yearning for fresh air and freedom. I began to hate the confines of that room, and I almost wished a secret informer would just tip of the SS and end our ordeal. I mean, at least Miep Gies brought cheese or sugar or turnips to the Franks now and then, but I had no such savior. In fact, the vending machines didn't make change, so I was left there with no sustenance for at least three hours. I nearly got scurvy. The experience was oppressive, and at one point I started thinking about what might happen if I were forced to spend the rest of my life trapped in that room.

Immediately, the most urgent hypothetical problems leapt to mind. At some point if we were imprisoned in the jury room for life, we'd all get horny and would need to pair up. So early in the day I began working on my plan for which of the other potential jurors I'd have sex with. There was only one candidate (I'm so monogamous - even in my fantasies) in the room who met my criteria. My criteria, by the way, is difficult to pinpoint. Sometimes my criteria has to do with the way a man's jeans bulge or the way his arms bulge or the way his ego bulges. Always bulging is involved. In that jury room only one man met my criteria - the Jigsaw Cowboy. My man was dressed in a tight blue t-shirt and a pair of jeans. He was rather plain, but I am certain that Anne Frank thought Peter Van Daan was plain at first. Nevertheless, romance bloomed in that attic, and I saw no reason why romance couldn't bloom between us too.

My cowboy was so sweet. He sat down with a couple older ladies (complete strangers to him) and helped them work their jigsaw puzzle as we all waited to see if we'd be called to serve on a jury. How sweet is that? I mean, here he was in a room with Hot Toddy. He could have easily put aside the needs of others and given in to his primal urges to ravage me in the jury room. But my cowboy was altruistic and good. I seriously contemplated going over to the table, taking the empty seat, and offering my assistance with the puzzle, which was a picture of matryoshka (nesting dolls). But I can't stand jigsaw puzzles. Seriously, I hate jigsaw puzzles so much. If I were Anne Frank in hiding and Miep brought me a jigsaw puzzle, I would have told her to get out and never come back. Then I'd have changed the locks on my secret annex. Jigsaw puzzles are the cottage cheese of entertainment. So I just did a lot of back stretches from my chair because he was sitting almost directly behind me and it was the only way to stare at him.

At 3:00, everyone in the room was dismissed, and the unfinished jigsaw puzzle was dumped back into its box. I watched my cowboy swagger out of the courthouse taking a little piece of me with him. And I never even knew his name.

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