Wednesday, November 05, 2014

2 Weeks to NEAS 2014


Thanks to Todd & Mike & anyone else who might've said a prayer for my knees last week. They're still not back to normal (sharp pains only in certain positions), but I can walk okay, & more importantly, still climb skyscraper staircases ... when needed ... or when bored while on jury-duty breaks.

Monday night I found out I had to report to the 20-story "O.J. Trial Building" in downtown L.A. on Tuesday morning. So I walked a mile to rent a car, & got there a little early ... with enough time for my first climb of this (now infamous) building, which is officially titled, Clara Shortridge Foltz Criminal Justice Center. O.J. was acquitted of murdering 2 people on the 9th floor, which aside from the main entrance, has its own redundant security screening, so tourists are not welcome there. The 8th & 10th floors are also off-limits since that's (presumably) where the murderers (or possibly journalists) are confined (as well they should be!).

I was selected for a case on the 15th floor, & while on breaks, I climbed the entire 19-story Stairwell #1 eight times ... relatively slowly ... while monitoring my heart-rate. It increased the most when I lost control & began showing off for a beautiful lady near the end of the lunch break, who noticed what I was doing, & commented on it being excellent exercise. She then introduced herself as a judge! Of course, I thought of a bunch of clever things to say after she disappeared through the door to her floor. Story of my life... But it was a real shot-in-the-arm to engage a lady of her caliber in conversation for a few moments.

I was assigned #30 for our panel of about 5-dozen prospective jurors, so I wasn't questioned at all on Tuesday, but comedian/actor Orny Adams was. I had never heard of him before, but it was entertaining to hear a couple of his remarks while being questioned. God definitely gifted him with quick wit & impeccable timing/delivery. Some of his Twitter tweets were even funnier, & I'm still laughing aloud over the first one since I was thinking the same thing at the time:

"The Q and A at jury duty about getting excused is hysterical. A guy just got into a debate whether he understands basic English in English!

I thought I was hanging out with some of the defendants. Turns out these are all jurors in this room.

I'm the only one that applauded when they said we are getting paid $15 a day for jury duty.

Finally someone asks a relevant question-- is there a Starbucks nearby.

They just told us we'll be here all day so make friends with other jurors and I barfed on my right leg.

FYI I wanna go to the gym is not an acceptable excuse to get out of jury duty. Now I know."

This morning, the judge & 2 attorneys began dismissing jurors they didn't want (for whatever reason), & after Orny & several others were dismissed, I was called ... & promptly dismissed. (No big surprise since I told them I'd be biased, but I was initially concerned that if I were to get on the case, & it got delayed, that it could jeopardize my ability to be in San Diego on the 19th.) On the way out, I asked Orny if he had a website, & he wrote it down for me because I had difficulty understanding "Orny". (And no, he doesn't have a British accent.)

Unfortunately I can't share with you how coincidental his hilarious remark about the English debate is with a point I'm making in my slideshow. You'll have to wait for the video!

Another benefit from jury service was getting to finish re-reading most of my Lv1 book. Othmar Keel is the prominent scholar I couldn't remember last month when Pithom mentioned that not all scholars believe the icons were religiously neutral.

Anyway, because I was dismissed, I only ended up climbing Stairwell #1 twice today, but also inspected Stairwell #2, which contains 2 flights beyond floor #19, leading up to #20 & the roof. I'm hoping that someday I'll be able to return & do a formal sprint ... & maybe see the pretty judge again!

Before heading home, I thought it would be fun to rehearse 2Ch31 in one of the busiest places downtown at the busiest time of day, so here's a video of me at the Grand Central Market (for the record, this is Take #2 of 5; all of which were recited flawlessly, but this one had the best background imagery):


G.M. Grena

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