Category Archives: All In A Day's Work

Jane On Jury Duty. Three Days Of Our Tax Dollars At Work.

So, what did you do last week? Work? School? Housework and blog work? Same old, same old?

Me?

I had jury duty.

Juror-button

Every American dreads it. You get the summons in the mailbox and your heart sinks. You struggle to find a way out of it. But once you get there, once you are chosen for a jury, you come to appreciate the awesome privilege and responsibility that it is.

Unless you get the case that I had.

…..

Seconds ago, I wrote a detailed account of the trial. A frivolous lawsuit. Two young college kids. A fight over a girl. Punches pulled with minor injuries (a bloody nose and a black eye.) But I erased it. I feel for those two kids. One who let his temper get the best of him and the other who came off looking like a greedy, vengeful crybaby. I felt awkward sharing the intimate details of their mistake. The details aren’t important.

“They had a trial over THAT?” my 9-year-old asked.

Yep. Three days of my life. Three days of our taxes to finance THAT.

We all make mistakes. Violence is never the answer. The puncher realized that, said as much on the stand. Showed remorse and regret and wanted a chance to do it over. But he knew he couldn’t. So instead, he owned what he had done.

The punchee sat on the stand, looking pitiful, recalling the events that happened 18 months ago and tried to convince us that the bloody nose and black eye had scarred him for life.

…..

We are a litigious society. We have a need to point the finger. And when we’ve been wronged we want someone to pay.

What Mr. Puncher did was wrong. Throwing a punch because you’re angry with someone is against the law. And he paid for that with repercussions at school and at least a night in jail. (And I only know that because of  a comment from one of the witnesses. Neither lawyer pursued her comment. Nothing else was entered into evidence.)

But what Mr. Punchee did was wrong, too. Beyond medical bills, he deserves nothing else.  All of the x-rays revealed he had a simple bloody nose and a black eye. No broken bones.This never should have gone to trial. And no one should expect pain and suffering for a scrap in a dorm room.

Re-reading what I’ve written, I’m afraid I sound cold. Unsympathetic to a boy who felt wronged. One of my fellow jurors would be thrilled to never see me again. She wanted to throw the book at Mr. Puncher. I wanted to shake my finger at Mr. Punchee and tell him to grow up.

We, as jurors, had so  many questions. Did the university take action? How long was Mr. Puncher in jail? Because this was a civil trial, was there any other legal action taken before this trial? Did either side try to settle this out of court?

“I’ll bet Mr. Puncher refused to pay the medical bills,” said Juror #47, “That’s why we’re here.”

“I’ll bet Mr. Puncher agreed to pay the medical bills but Mr. Punchee demanded more,” said Juror Jane, “In closing arguments his lawyer pleaded with us to consider his pain and suffering. That’s what we were charged to determine. His lawyer already admitted to being good friends with Mr. Punchee’s father. An opportunity to cash in. Plain and simple. THAT’S why we’re here.”

In the end, we compromised with medical bills and a little compensation for the attorney’s fees and filing costs. I can live with that. Mr. Puncher needs to pay for the medical costs he created and a little more because this all wouldn’t have happened if he had kept his temper. Mr. Punchee can have a little of his honor restored by saying he “won” in court.

But pain and suffering? The only pain and suffering was endured by the tax payers, having to sit and listen to this frivolous suit.

And the bulk of Mr. Punchee’s  attorney’s fees, to the tune of $11,500?

Let his dad and his buddy work that one out.

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The First Week Of School Has Kicked My Butt. And It Hasn’t Even Gotten Crazy Yet.

The first week of school has kicked my butt and it hasn’t even gotten crazy around here yet. Next week is when we add swim practice, baseball and Cub Scouts to the schedule. This week it’s just been school.

Just four days of school.

That’s it.

As much as I enjoyed our summer (and we had a fabulous summer!) I craved the routine that makes the school year. The week before school began I could barely contain my glee. Oh sure, I’d miss my kids but our wake-up times, leave times, come home times, dinner times and bed times would finally be in sync.

Bliss.

Or not.

First day: no homework (yay!) but #1son’s backpack and the required 2-inch binder broke. Back to Target.

Second day: Homework. Not too taxing. Everyone was happy with their results but it took longer than expected and dinner was late. Oh, and #2son has decided that school lunches are gross. So now, it’s back to making lunches in the morning. For one child. Other child calls school lunches “gourmet.” And the recent-school-lunch-hater’s Buzz Lightyear lunchbox from 3 years ago simply will not do. Back to Target. And Publix for lunch meat.

Third day: More homework. This time a research project. Over the summer we brilliantly put in place a net-nanny system on the computer upstairs that requires me to punch in a password for every new website they visit. Every. Single. One. Who’s brilliant idea was this? Oh yeah. Darling husband who isn’t home during the day when the boys use the computer. Project (finally) finished but need a clear folder to place it in. Back to Target.

Fourth day: I’ve been in a daze. I can’t think. I can’t focus. Pulled in different directions, I can’t seem to finish a project. I can’t sit still because I keep thinking I’m forgetting something.

target

Guess I’ll go back to Target.

Because Target hasn’t failed me yet.

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The Invasion Of The Privacy Snatchers

It has happened again.

invasion

The invasion of the privacy snatchers.

We looked at our calendar and realized we have house guests for four weekends in a row, with two sets spilling into the work week.

What did we do?

A friend of mine once said, while I was lamenting a similar situation over the holiday season, “You must be an amazing hostess for people to w ant to come so often and stay for so long!”

I’d like to think so. But I am also a person that finds it hard to say “No” if I don’t have an obvious, socially acceptable excuse. So when most of June and part of July turned into Jane’s Bed and Breakfast, it kind of snuck up on us.   (Or sneaked if you’re a master grammarian.) 

Sneaked or snuck, we didn’t see it coming.

And now we’re stuck.

Today is one of my few days, with the house to myself (and two little gremlin sons) because the onslaught begins again tomorrow.

I love a home full of noise and love and laughter but I also love a silent home, a calm home and a clean home. As I’m scrubbing and washing and folding, I’m thinking “What’s the point?”

It’s all going to fall apart in about 28 hours.

So, I sat down to check in with all of you. Thanks for the distraction. I’d much rather be here anyway.

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Old News But News To Me. And It’s Feel-Good-Friday!

Apparently, this is old news. Three months old, to be exact.

But it’s news to me. So I’m sharing.

The Allegheny Window Cleaning company, in Pennsylvania, surprised a client (a local children’s hospital) with this:

superherowindow

 

Not to be outdone (honestly, I don’t know who went first…it just fit my internet surfing timeline) the window washers at La Bonheur Children’s Hospital in Memphis, Tennesee did this:

spi

 

And this great idea is now a movement. If you Google “superhero window washers” you’ll find similar stories popping up all over America. From Pittsburgh to Memphis to St. Petersburg, Florida and beyond.

Bringing joy to these children’s faces, allowing them to forget about their illness for even just a moment is such a precious and amazing thing.

Now, that’s my definition of a Superhero.

 

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Filed under All In A Day's Work, Be-Causes, RAOK, The !!!

The Greatest Lie Ever Told (And I’m 99.9% Sure You Are Guilty)

“I have read the terms and conditions…..”

Check. Or click.

Whatever.

That’s about as far as I get. I read those first seven words and I click away. Without ever reading said terms and conditions. I just cross my fingers and hope for the best.

Every once in a great while it won’t let you click the handy terms and conditions box unless you at least scroll through said terms and conditions.

So I do.

“The legal agreements set out below….blah, blah, blah,……Neither issuer nor BlahCorp. is responsible for….blah, blah, blah,……Your use of the Services includes the ability to….blah, blah, blah….”

But does anyone really ever get that far? Don’t you just scroll as quickly as you can and then click?

I admit it. I do.

Don’t they all say basically the same thing?

“We (BlahBlah Corp.) own your finger clicking if you use our service. And you (the user) are responsible for all the clicks you click on our site. We (BlahBlah Corp.) have our butts covered and you (the user) are on your own.”

(Oh. I feel so used.)

They spell it all out. Everything they will and will not provide. There is nothing left to chance or good faith or sound moral character.

And we blindly click. Annoyed with the legal jargon and irrelevant circumstances and idiot proofing.

Why can’t there be an easy to read, concise and precise terms and conditions agreement?

Something like this:

“We, BlahBlah Corp., own every finger click on this site. If you don’t trust our site, don’t click here.”

End of story.

Simple. Concise. And true.

In our litigious society, putting blind faith and trust into a company or website is dangerous. And unfortunately, the companies can’t trust us, either. So we are stuck with a silly step where we click a box saying we’ve read something when we haven’t.

Admit it.

When was the last time you read, completely and fully, a terms and conditions document?

I know.

Me either.

At least we are all lying together.

But not in bed.

Because I’m married.

And that bed would get pretty crowded.

 

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Filed under All In A Day's Work, How We Roll, Observations

The Story Of My Life

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Filed under Adult Children, All In A Day's Work

There’s No Crying In Housework

Cast of Characters

Jane (aka Mom, Taskmaster, Evil Queen of the Jane Household)

#1son (helpful 9 year old, loves baseball, the Military Channel and picking on his younger brother)

#2son (cheerful, goofy youngest of the family who will do anything to get out of chores. Anything.)

Act 1, Scene 1

(A messy home. A very, very messy home.)

JANE

First, we need to pick up the clutter. Then, you can choose something from the Job Jar and get paid OR you can do what I tell you to do and not get paid. It’s your choice.

#1SON

O.K, Mom.

(#1son happily trots off to clean playroom, bedroom, family room, garage – wherever cleaning needs to be done, he cheerfully goes. God, I love this kid! #2son continues playing with Legos.)

JANE

#2son, you need to pick up your toys now.

(#2son ignores Jane)

I mean it. You need to clean up. And you can pick a chore or I can pick a chore. But if I pick it, you’re not getting paid.

(Ad lib arguing, pleading, bargaining, hiding, going to the bathroom, needing to put on a band-aid, looking for a lost Lego, hiding again, etc.)

I mean it, #2son. I’m not fooling around. You need to help. NOW!

#2SON

But I don’t want to! I want to play with my LEGOOOOOOOOOS!

JANE

Well, you have to. Are you a member of this family? Yes. Then you have to do your part.

#2SON

Well, I don’t want to be a member of this family. I’m going to run away!

JANE

That’s fine. But before you go you’re going to have to do some chores. You owe us for dinner last night, that comfy bed you slept in and breakfast this morning. Oh, and you still haven’t worked off what you owe for your swim team fees.

(#2son’s chin starts to quiver. Eyes begin welling up.)

Oh no, mister. That’s not going to work with me.

(Tears start flowing now and he falls to a heap on the floor, face down.)

Crying? Seriously? You’re crying over a little housework? I can’t believe this! All I need for you to do is pick up your toys and pick a couple chores from the job jar. It’ll take you 15 minutes. Tops. And you’re crying about it! I do this every day. Pick up after you all. Clean toilets. Scrub floors. Vacuum. Dust. Laundry. Do you see me crying about it?

THERE’S NO CRYING IN HOUSEWORK!

(And then, realizing what she said, Jane starts laughing hysterically.)

Nope. Not one of my better moments. But I still crack myself up.

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Filed under All In A Day's Work, funny, Motherhood