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Jury Duty

Thursday, February 28th, 2019 No comments
Jury Box

I received a summons once during my freshman year of college from my home county in Mississippi. Since I was off at school in a different part of the state, I got out of having to go. I’ve kinda regretted that since then and sometimes I’ve gotten a little jealous when people I know were summonsed.

Over 20 years later, I finally got another summons and last week I had to report. I was excited about the possibility at first, but then a major deadline came up at work for the end of the month. I figured I would be there a day, possibly two, and then I could get back to work.

I reported to the courthouse on Wednesday of last week. They had 15 cases and not enough jurors, so people who didn’t get selected for for one case would be recycled and could potentially be on another case. They mentioned a 4-day case and also 1-day cases. After we watched a video, they selected a pool for two 3-day cases pretty early on. Then they selected a pool that didn’t have to go because there wasn’t going to be a jury trial for that case after all. I think at this point we found out that there were 1 or 2 cases left because the others had been settled, rescheduled, or the defendant waived their right to a trial by jury. They called my number for the next pool. We all thought this was going to be a 1-day case, but it turned out to be the 4-day case that was mentioned! Shit! I knew that I was going to have to work nights to meet my deadline if I was picked.

After a lunch break we were taken to the court room where jury selection would take place. We found out the charges and were asked questions by the judge and lawyers. I was in the jury box from the beginning which meant I was going to be in the trial unless I was eliminated. The attorneys bumped a lot of people from the box during the challenge phase and each time the juror was placed by someone else from the pool. I thought some of my answers would show favor toward the prosecution, but I was never bumped. When selection was over, we were sworn in. Shit! Shit! Shit!

I’m not going to go into all the details of the trial. It was a sexual abuse cases involving a girl and her stepfather. We were there Wednesday – Friday and came back to finish the following Wednesday (yesterday). I feel sad that the girl’s life has been affected by this and her mother didn’t believe her that anything had happened. The defendant was found guilty by a unanimous vote on each of the 5 charges that we considered. I was sitting right next to the witness stand, so I got a close up view of all the witnesses. I tried to look straight at everyone at some point when they were speaking, especially the victim. After the verdict, we got to ask the judge questions. She said it was one of the toughest cases she’s ever had to listen to. We found out there were 8(?) more charges that he waived his right to a jury trial.

One funny things is that on Monday I went to the gym. Some guy hesitantly walked up to me. I figured that we knew each other from somewhere but just didn’t remember where. He asked if I had been on jury duty the week before. When I said yes, he said that he was sorry I got picked and they stopped the challenge/bumping process right before they got to him. Once he said that I remembered him and remembered him answering questions.

I’m glad jury duty is over. I wish my first experience didn’t have so much stress involved. I managed to get my work stuff done pretty early and we will meet our deadline. It’s nice just be able to talk about the trial now even though I’m still not going into a lot of details. We couldn’t even talk about it in the jury room until deliberations began. I’m glad that I can google information about the case now. Last night, I googled the defendant and found a whole list of charges. I can’t be summonsed again for two years. If I’m ever picked again, hopefully it won’t be as serious of a case.

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Work Work Work Work Work

Tuesday, October 30th, 2018 No comments

Things are busy as usual.  I have some help now.  I’ve been leading a small team (4 people now) and I got some great praise about how well I’ve been doing. The company is doing well. I’m enjoying my work and enjoying life.

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Stress

Tuesday, July 31st, 2018 No comments

The next month is going to be stressful, but at least I get a vacation after that. More then.

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Flash Update

Monday, April 30th, 2018 No comments

Life is busy. Guitar lessons. Exercising. Taking on more responsibility at work. Moved desks twice. Planted a garden. I want to go to Mexico. More detailed updates as time permits.

Roommate and New Job

Sunday, December 25th, 2016 No comments

There’s a little under a  week left in the year, so I’m going to try to spend some time over the next week getting caught up on all the blog entries I’ve been meaning to write. Some of these topics may have been mentioned on Facebook or previous posts.

Back in October, I got a roommate. My new roommate is my good friend Kysen.  I never thought I would have a roommate again. I didn’t think I would live with anyone else again unless I was in a relationship. But Kysen’s lease was ending and his roommate was moving to Astoria, so he asked if he could use my extra bedroom.

I lived alone for over 8 years before Kysen moved in so it was an adjustment getting used to sharing a home with someone again.  We’re different people when it comes to cleanliness and organization, but .  There were a couple of nights about a week apart where I went out and came home to find a decent amount of stuff rearranged.  I ended up liking what he did, but I just wish I could have been a part of it.  Thee are times where i still have to ask him where things are because I don’t know where he put them.  Overall though, I think we are both happy living with each other.

Intel logo

In November I got a new job. I’m an now a Cloud Software Engineer at Intel. It was about 6 weeks from the time I interviewed until the time I started.  It all came about because of a contact that I have on Twitter.  I’m working on the same campus that I worked on as a contractor. I love my team and the work I’m doing.  We work hard and we have fun socializing and engaging in random nerf gun fights. I’m so much happier than I was before. What a difference being happy with your job can make in all aspects of your life!

There’s been a lot of change in my life, but it’s been for the better. Life is good.

When it Rains, It Pours

Monday, August 29th, 2016 2 comments

A week ago today at work , I heard a rumor that some decision had been made that would affect us and we would find out Wednesday the latest how it would affect our team.  On Wednesday, I was told that our project was canceled and I my last day at work would be the last day of the month, which was a week away.  My company normal offers me bench time when I’m between assignments (which has only happened twice), but this time they are unable to because there’s no room on the bench currently.  Our biggest client has made major cutbacks, so that hurts us.  The next day HR called to schedule an exit interview and told me I would be paid until the Friday after my last day. Even after some frustrations over the past couple of years, I hate that it’s ending this way. Hopefully I won’t be out of work for too long. I don’t like the idea of blowing through my savings.

The guy I dated earlier in the year, Alex, changed his name to Kysen.  Kysen suggested that we go out to eat Saturday night after a beach trip to Rooster Rock with some friends.  Kysen had spent Friday night at my place since I was giving him ride to the beach. Our group ended up dwindling Saturday morning, so I ended up driving everybody.  While we were eating he told me that he would just spend Saturday night on my couch was well and we could finish watching the season of Drag Race that we were watching the night before.  After we finished, we were both were having trouble getting our cards to go through. Kysen suggested I go to an ATM to withdraw money.  I left the restaurant and I’m pretty sure I pulled out my wallet to call the bank but just decided to wait and try the ATM. Once I got close to the ATM, I realized that I didn’t have my wallet with me.  I went back to the restaurant and didn’t see the wallet there. I thought I may have accidentally left the table without the wallet.  The wallet must have fallen out of my pocket like my phone did earlier on the beach.  I retraced my steps and later Kysen joined me and we retraced them again, to no avail.  I was holding out hope that someone honest found it and would return it or that the restaurant had it, but the next day I found out that the person tried to buy TriMet passes with my card. I also saw a weird charge on it at the restaurant we ate at. I think I’ve cancelled everything that was in the wallet.  There was a blank check in there for emergencies, so I closed my old account and opened a new one.  I still need to get a new drivers license and passport.  Hopefully, there won’t be too much damage caused by the person that has my stuff.  I realize that I rely on my debit card too much because it was difficult figuring out how to eat Sunday because I couldn’t go to a branch and withdraw cash until Monday.  I bought a new wallet today. I’m starting over.

I’m trying to stay positive. I always bounce back from these kinds of things.  Hopeful it’ll be sooner than later. Some good news, please.

20 Years of Making Money

Monday, July 6th, 2015 No comments

me

Before I left for Portland about 3.5 years ago, I went to visit my mom in Jackson, MS. While I was going through my old stuff I came across my old pay stubs, which I used to save. I found my very first one from my first job and snapped a picture of it.

A few weeks back I was going through pictures on my phone and noticed the date. I made a note to say something about it on this day. 20 years, y’all!

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Checking In

Saturday, February 28th, 2015 No comments

It’s been a fairly uneventful month for me.  I did  start a new podcast  – What We Make: A Terminator Podcast.  It was originally going to be an introcast on The Sarah Connor Chronicles.  Since we were planning on discussing pretty much the entire Terminator universe, we decided to make it a general Terminator podcast.

I’m a lot less optimistic about work improving than I was before.  I spoke to someone in the same position as me earlier, so I’m not the only one who feels the way I do.

Fitness is going well.  I got my measurements today and I’m down to 11% body fat.  My trainer told me it would be really hard to get lower than that, but I’m going to try.  I got a Fitbit Charge HR yesterday and it’s pretty cool to monitor my heart rate.  I don’t like wearing anything around my wrist, but this device hasn’t been a problem for me.

Progress after 6 months

I’m so busy I haven’t had much time for video games, TV, or movies. That should change this coming week. I’m looking forward to going to Raleigh in April and Mississippi in June.

 

Until next time.

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Taking it Easy

Wednesday, November 26th, 2014 No comments

I haven’t really done much since I got back from Hawaii.  It’s been nice to be live a lazy and boring life.

A couple of weeks after I got back from Hawaii, I came home to find that Reese wasn’t his normal energetic self.  After a couple of trips to the emergency vet and a visit to the doctor that performed his surgery back in March (she works at a different place now), we figured that it was a return of his back problems, which will be a lifelong problem.  Although I was prepared to take him in for surgery again, it looks like bed rest has help greatly.  I started taking him on increasingly longer walks each week as the doctor instructed, but this week he started limping a little bit.  I started shortening his walks and he’s doing better.  He seems like his normal self most of the time.

I entered a weight loss competition at my gym and it started right before I left for Hawaii.  I used my 4 complimentary personal training sessions to learn a new workout routine.  Even though I had been working out, I was still very much out of shape.  My old workout wasn’t cutting it. My new workout was a “basic” workout, but it was very tough.  My trainer is honest and told me beforehand it wouldn’t be easy.  Over the next 4-5 weeks, I saw made some good progress, but it was getting too easy and I wasn’t loosing weight anymore.  I paid for 8 more sessions and I’m learning a more long-term workout routine.  It’s much much harder than what I was doing before.  Also, I’ve been eating better.  I’ve done pretty well with sticking to my food plan over the past couple of weeks.  So far, I’ve lost about 17 lbs.  I’m in 8th place in the weight loss competition.  At this point, I don’t really care about the competition anymore.  I just want to be healthier.

I’ve been trying to play video games as much as possible.  There are way too many games and not enough time to play them.  I’ve also been catching up on a lot of movies that missed.  Everyone should go see Birdman.

I went to “An Evening with Patrick Rothfuss” here in Portland about a month ago.  The Doubleclicks opened for him.  Most of it was a repeat of what I saw at P.A.X., but it was still fun.  I got an autographed copy of his new book.  I was too tired to stand in a long line to get a personalized autograph.  Maybe next time.

Work is the main thing that’s bothering me these days.  I’m just very bored and frustrated.  I’ve talked to the people that I need to talk to, but no one seems to want to change anything except me.  Hopefully, things will turn around soon.

That’s it for now.  I have to get a few things ready for Thanksgiving tomorrow.

Home Runs for Homeless Youth 2014

Tuesday, June 10th, 2014 No comments

This past Sunday I had a lot of fun playing in a charity kickball tournament to benefit homeless youth. My company had a team in the tournament and we were called the One Kick Wonders.

The day started off with a round robin tournament. We played terribly in our first couple of games and were obliterated by both teams. I don’t think we ever got anybody on base.We had never practiced together. Many of us had never met each other before. We were playing agaist people who play in kickball leagues. After our 2nd game, we had a bit of a break and we spent that time practicing and strategizing. We were much better after that. We lost the next game by only one run and that was mostly because the umpire didn’t do a good job of keeping track of outs. The captain of the other team even told us that we got screwed. After that we were in kind of a loser’s bracket. We won every game we had after that. We ended up in 3rd place overall out of 15 teams. Who says nerds can’t do sports?

One Kick Wonders 2014
It’s was fun being athletic again even though I’m sore as hell 2 days later. This was the first time I’ve been in any kind of athletic competition since I was in junior high. I’m not counting bowling because bowling isn’t really a sport. Kickball is more of a sport than bowling :). Anyway, now I want to join a league around here. I think I would enjoy kickball, volleyball, or softball. It was cool that we turned things around as a team and came in 3rd place. And it was all for a great cause. I hope we do this again next year.