The Gull Reef Club

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7/12/2017 · 4:22 pm· Trouble · Half of Us Are Wrong or in the Alternative, Half of Us Are Right
I've been following the saga and cataloging links of interest that contain more than mere rhetoric.... | Read More

12/23/2016 · 8:43 am· lordhelmet · Merry Christmas Eve Eve Eve!
Merry Christmas to you and Mike as well as a Happy New Year!... | Read More

11/3/2016 · 1:30 pm· Jaime · See Something, Say Something, A First Hand Account
Sure doesn't, which in no way explains why the Cubs won! Interesting that we all woke up this... | Read More

11/3/2016 · 12:21 pm· LH · See Something, Say Something, A First Hand Account
No good deed goes unpunished. But at least the Cubs won.... | Read More

10/28/2016 · 6:42 am· lordhelmet · Official Release – Jaime 2.0
I already voted for Trump of course. He was my last choice in the primaries (I supported Kasich)... | Read More

2/27/2014

The Lady At The Table

Filed under: — Jaime @ 8:03 pm

I had, and sort of still have, every intention on posting my notes from my time at jury duty on Wednesday. In the event I flake out/get lazy and don’t post my notes, I still wanted to share an event that stood out.

The case that needed a jury was for a criminal trial, felony assault. We went through the usual voir dire, and were all asked questions by both the District Attorney and the two Defense Counsel. Throughout the entire time, there was a lady sitting with the DA at the DA’s table, wearing a suit like all the other attorneys. She was listening to the voir dire proceedings, and it appeared she was consulting with the DA on jury selection (lots of leaned-in whispering to each other throughout). It not made clear to us who she was at first. I, and I assume most in there, thought she was another DA.

Toward the end of voir dire, it was mentioned in a very off-hand way (and I can’t even remember who said it now – it was that nonchalant), that the mystery lady at the DA’s table was, in fact, the arresting officer of the Defendant. I don’t know if I was the only one in the room who was confused and a bit surprised by this, but I was certainly the only one to ask for clarification about it. Yeah me. I just love to draw attention to myself, but I couldn’t let it go without knowing for sure.

As soon as I heard her title, I raised my hand and asked Defense Counsel #1*, “I’m sorry, I’m not sure if I heard that right. Did someone up there (in front of the bar) say that lady sitting at the DA’s table is the arresting officer?” DC#1 confirms, “Yes. She is the Arresting Officer.” I then sort of blurt out, “And she is allowed to sit through all this…and the trial?” With that, DC#1 turns to face me full on (meaning her back was completely to the Judge, the DA, and Arresting Officer) makes a face at me that I took as grateful, says very curtly, “Yes. That is how the Court has ruled.” I thanked her and sat down. I know I heard a few gasps and hmms in the room.

So I didn’t get picked for the jury. I don’t know if it is because of my question or not. There are certainly other criteria that may have gotten me kicked.

I’m really hung up on this, though. My gut tells me that it is improper for the arresting officer to be at the DA’s table, especially during jury selection. It affords her the opportunity to shape her testimony to what she thinks the jury wants to hear. I’m not saying this officer would do this purposefully, but it may be the sort of thing that happens subliminally and she wouldn’t even know she was doing it. It could damage the fairness of the Defendant’s trial.

I asked a few attorneys I know/work with, but since we are all immersed in the civil side of the law, no one really had a solid answer for me. I’m curious about the legality of having an arresting officer sit in on jury selection and an entire trial. I have a very high opinion of the Judge overseeing the case and would like to think he did nothing improper. The issue may lie with Georgia law itself, which again, I’m obviously not sure about. Thoughts?

*I didn’t intentionally mean to ask DC#1. I would have asked anyone who would have answered me. It just happened she was the one who responded first when I raised my hand.

2/26/2014

Hang in there, Brother!

Filed under: — Jaime @ 8:16 pm

This post is specifically dedicated to my beloved, baby brother and all his fellow northerners who are beyond sick of winter.

One of the few ways we humans make ourselves feel better about our respective conditions is to ponder the misery of someone worse off and then remark, “well, at least my life isn’t that hard”. So here is your comparison for the day; I hope it makes you feel a little better:

Bad-ass, hyperborean, 3rd great-grandpa Abell primarily resided, for a good portion of his life, at Lower Fort Garry, in the southern region of Manitoba. On one occasion, duty required him to travel to Fort Chipewyan in the far northern parts of Alberta. Because he was assisting in getting the first steamboat to sail on Lake Athabasca, he had to travel in winter (which is boat building season, when the lakes/rivers are frozen). This all went down Winter 1882/1883. At one point, he wrote about what he had to wear as he traveled (by dogsled):

It might interest you to know that the garments necessary for winter travel were as follows: Heavy flannel underwear, flannel shirt with collars, a heavy tweed suit, and over the coat a jersey. In addition, one had to have a “top-coat” -as it was called- of buffalo robe, lined with rat skin, and with an otter collar; a cap with an otter band and a seal crown, and ear flaps which could be pulled down; a knitted muffler to wrap around the neck and head; and for the feet, high silk socks, and over them duffel socks, made of heavy wool in something resembling the texture of a blanket. These last were made expressly for wear on long journeys in extreme winter weather. One also wore moccasins of smoked moose skin, in place of boots, and buffalo leggins, which partly covered the moccasins and extended up over the knees. A pair of fur gauntlets drawn on over woolen gloves constituted the finishing touch in this outfit.

So my cold northern-dwelling friends and family, when you dress for work next, keep this in mind and think, well, at least my life isn’t that hard.

2/25/2014

Summonsed Again, 9 Years Later

Filed under: — Jaime @ 9:54 pm

The Machine has pulled my number. For the second time in the nearly thirteen years I’ve lived here, I have been called to the join the Justice Squadron at the Municipal Fortress of Vengeance. I was delighted to find I had kept notes of my last term of public service, and now, intend to do so again. More tomorrow.

2/20/2014

New Guts

Filed under: — Jaime @ 12:52 am

The parts arrived and Mike has assembled my screaming new computer. It’s late so I don’t have much time now, but I’m curious – can one be in love with a machine? I’m smitten.

2/16/2014

No Mas II

Filed under: — Jaime @ 3:24 pm

My computer,which actually was Mike’s old computer, is dead. It was a good long run, and Mike has a kick ass backup and NAS system set up so I have few concerns about lost data. Phew! Thanks, Mike!

Mike has researched and purchased me the parts to make a stellar new computer. They should arrive by Wednesday or Thursday. In the meantime, I’m stuck using my tablet. I’m old school and don’t know if I will ever get used to not using a keyboard (mostly because I refuse to make the effort). I very much dislike this touch type/autocorrect bs. I feel out of control. If I’m slow to respond this week, please be patient. I’ll be back when I have real typing ability again.

2/13/2014

No Mas!

Filed under: — Jaime @ 10:18 pm

As I return to normalcy after the surgery, I find I am pleasantly overwhelmed with possibilities to occupy my attention. Front and center being the Sochi Winter Olympics. Of course and especially hockey, including the ladies. Those girls kick ass and were fun to watch. I won’t ruin anything for you, I promise. I hate that. This Olympics is seriously testing our tv watching/recording stamina. It’s all sports all the time, except when I’m completely avoiding current events because I don’t want the results spoiled. We’re currently watching a replay of the Canada v Norway mens hockey game. Don’t ruin it for me.

In addition to all the strenuous tv viewing, I’ve made a few genealogy advancements. My interlibrary loan came in. It’s a biography written about that bad ass 3rd great grandfather I’ve previously mentioned, written by his daughter (my gg aunt) who was pretty bad ass herself. On top of that, one of Mike’s cousins got in touch with me and it appears I may be making some advancements on his tree soon as well. (Mike’s that is, not his cousin’s. Although I suppose the help would work both ways…/tangent end.)

Somehow I am also managing to squeeze in listening to my first audio book. (Yes, I really love my library.) Unfortunately, my commute is too short to listen on the ride to work – not to mention the fact that there is little possibility of getting Mike to want to listen as well (one car house, he drives me, in the event this statement was confusing to you). It’s a good thing I shower everyday. I just hope I can get it finished before it expires. Review later.

The making of my new pick guard is imminent.

Pushing the limits of awesomeness, I have had chocolate cake almost everyday this week, and on Tuesday twice.

Fortunately, the weather has been a cold bucket of suck and I can’t go outside or I’d have even more to do. Ok, back to one of my many other distractions…I think I’ll start with chocolate cake.

2/2/2014

Cross-Post: WHY Joe Buck Sucks

Filed under: — Jaime @ 2:22 pm

As we all draw closer to our respective Super Bowl parties, please consider this: WHY Joe Buck Sucks, and why people hate Joe Buck

Helpful hint: if you have a surround system, many will allow you to mute/silence your center channel (where the voices come out). Simply silence your center and you will no longer be subject to the boring ramblings of Buck & Aikman, and will feel like you’re in the middle of the stadium (just warmer and with slightly more personal freedom).

Go Broncos!

The Gull Reef Club