Carl’s been called up to do his bit for society.
Not that he has time to.
It’s the second time he’s been called up in less than three months. A few months ago Carl received in the mail a letter from the Sheriff’s Department letting him know he was required to be at the Court House on a particular date for a three-month murder trial. Carl knew that as he is self-employed and trying to house, feed, clothe and educate a few expensive dependents, that three months away from his business would cause his business to collapse and see us financially destitute.
He wrote them a letter advising them of these things and asked to be excused. I told Carl I would post the letter.
Carl was very surprised a few weeks later when a letter arrived from the Sheriff’s Department advising that as he had failed to turn up for Jury Duty he now must pay a $1,200 fine.
That’s when I thought I should probably tell him the letter had slipped my mind and it was highly probable that it was never posted.
But I told Carl not to worry about the fine because I would fix everything by writing that Department one of my very special ‘Dear Abby’ letters. And I held nothing back in my epistle, pleading our circumstances with great emotion and pouring out why doing Jury Duty would bring us to ruin. I said that Carl was very willing to do his bit for society but that as he has a few mouths to feed could he please be given a case that is short and sharp rather than something that takes up the better part of a year.
I thought my letter would work like a charm.
We were both stunned when a few days later Carl received another letter from the Sheriff’s Department. The letter was summonsing him to Court for another three-month trial and stating that if he failed to turn up on this occasion he would be given a $2,400 fine.
What part of my letter did they not understand?
Before Carl left the house this morning I said to him, ‘You’ll be back at work by ten.’ And I knew that because I have been called up for Jury Duty three times and I am yet to see the inside of a Courtroom. On every occasion as soon as I arrived they told me I could leave. Once it was because the accused failed to turn up. Another time the judge didn’t think I looked suitable. The third time I was told ‘dismissed’ before I’d even properly entered the room.
So Carl arrived and was asked, ‘Can you do a three-month trial?’ (And they should have known the answer to this question because I told them he couldn’t in my Dear Abby letter). And Carl replied, ‘No’. And then the man said, ‘Then you can leave. But we’ll be calling you up in three month’s time for a shorter trial.’
And Carl was back in the office by ten.
Have you ever done Jury Duty?
An Outstanding Appetiser from the 1970’s
After my post, The View From the Staircase, I couldn’t resist making one of these non-gourmet, slightly tragic appetisers. And I had so much fun! And Alfie, whose birthday is fast approaching and who was born in the ‘noughties’ thought it was incredible and asked, ‘Can you make one of these for my party Mum?’ He had never before seen a brutally stabbed orange and stared at it with wonder.
And the post brought back a lot of memories for my mother who has been inspired to find all the recipes she used to cook way back when. In the recipe section of my blog I now have a 70’s section and over the next few weeks I plan to re-visit and share these recipes that deserve a place in history.
And thank you all so very much for all your wonderful comments on that post. I felt blessed to receive each and every one of them because you all gave me a privileged glimpse into memories from your own childhood. And a special thanks to Sonia from Life, Love and Hiccups for reminding me that I omitted the 1970’s essential, the pickled onion.
There isn’t really a recipe for this concoction but in case like Alfie you weren’t a part of the ’70’s, here’s what you need:
Serves: Your dinner party guests
Degree of Difficulty: 1/5
Cost: This appetiser certainly won’t break the budget. Maybe $10.00 with lots of leftovers for the next occasion.
- 1 block of cheese cut into cubes
- 1 small jar of gherkins cut into bite sized pieces
- 1 small jar of white pickled onions
- 1 tin of pineapple pieces drained then dried on paper towel
- 1 cabanossi cut into bite sized pieces
- 1 glamorous orange, bottom sliced flat to make it ‘sit’
- Don’t forget the toothpicks!
Place the orange on a round platter. Gather the toothpicks and stab them into a cube of cheese and then one of either the gherkins, pickled onions, pineapple pieces or cabanossi. Stab into the orange. Serve immediately.