Jury Duty. Two words that can make even the most optimistic of us groan with contempt. What silver lining could there POSSIBLY be? You have to travel to City Hall at 9 in the morning, wait in the metal detector security line, sit in a room with a vibrant cross-section of the city's best and brightest, sit in ANOTHER room with hard benches and harsh lighting, and listen to the gory details of a case that either breaks your heart or makes you ill.
Not that I was staring, but there's really nothing else to do besides size up your fellow NYers. From exercise clothes to pencil skirts, Mets tees to three-piece suits, it wasn't so much WHAT people were wearing, but why? Why wear what has to be an uncomfortable combo of high-waisted sailor pants and stilettos when you know you're going to be sitting on a court bench all day? Why wear a full-on basketball uniform and act exasperated when people ask you where the game is, Sport?
I had quite a bit of time to think about this and came up with three main demographic categories that my fellow jurors at 111 Centre Street must fall into:
1) Single or Taken?
How great would a "We Met at Jury Duty" story be?! Maybe now's the chance to class it up and actually meet someone outside of a cocktail party or photoshoot…(taking a look around)…nah, maybe not.
2) Employed or Looking?
Jury duty is like speed dating without the social stigma and Linked In without the annoying email notifications. Things I now know about my fellow jurors without having to ask: occupation, where they live/work, if they're single/married, and if they're convicted felons (clutch information). Photography agency owner married to fashion publicist living in SoHo? Cue me reaching for my business cards…
3) Attention Seeker or Wallflower
Just like in real life, there's the lady with the tight shirt who saunters slowly to the juror box and the mopey NYU student dressed in black who answers every question with a sigh. Jury duty doesn't change the fact that people dress the way feel or, perhaps, just the way they want to feel.
Then again, maybe sailor girl had a hot date later or basketball boy legitimately was playing a game around the corner before he arrived. But that's just not as much fun to daydream about, now is it? And I had a lot of daydreaming time to fill, people…
Reese Witherspoon in Legally Blonde via MGM