Who Knew Jury Duty Would Open My Eyes?
I was called last year at this time and postponed it a year since I was just starting out on the book tour for Content Rules and didn't want to run the risk of being sat on a jury and having to cancel dates.
I've been called one other time in the past and got sat on a jury that go around, but at the last minute the trial was canceled. This time around I wasn't so lucky and for the past two weeks have been serving on a civil case in Massachusettes Superior Court and the process has been eye opening on multiple levels.
I was fascinated by the whole process and I'm more than happy to do my civic duty and serve. I firmly believe that we should each make a point to proudly serve on juries and vote. Those are two cornerstones of our rights as Americans and we shouldn't bitch about either one of them. Yes, it was an inconvience and I even had to cancel a trip because of it, but I was glad to do it.
The interesting side effect that I wasn't ready for was because we had to keep our phones off while in session and commuting each day I wasn't as engaged on all the different social channels as I usually am. Instead of having a constant flow of e-mail, I was only checking it three times a day. I'd watch the news in the morning to be updated on the world around me, but didn't have the constant flow of information that I was use to.
And guess what?
I loved it.
I don't like having lost the first two weeks of the year. I hated not working on my new book and missing some quality time with friends and potential business leads on my trip. But, it gave me time to clear my head and really take a good hard look at what I need and don't need to be successful this year.
I've always been the guy to look for the silver lining and in this case I've certainly found it. My day-to-day habits are certainly going to change because of this.
As for the case (since everyone keeps asking), it was a civil case of some greedy parents looking for money that they didn't deserve. After three years of lawyer fees and two weeks of trial we ruled against the plaintiff because it was that clear of a case to us. I wish the judge had allowed us to flip the decision and rule against the plaintiff and assign damages to cover the defendant's lawyers fees. I'm still not sure how this ever went to trial.