That’s how it went, all night, night after night. The judge would get pissy if anything caused a delay because they had a schedule to keep dammit. I think my girlfriend had to do a few months of that before it was some other junior DA’s turn in the barrel. I remember her being exhausted by it, both physically and emotionally.

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Almost all the defendants were black men. They were brought in bus loads from Rikers Island and sat in a sort of pen area until it was their turn. A public defender who looked like he hadn’t slept in days would shuffle through some paperwork, and my girlfriend the DA would read of some charges. Judge Gene Shalit would ask a few questions, bang his gavel, and then the next guy would be shuttled forward.

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BTW, as you can probably imagine, night court was nothing like “Nigh Court”, except that it was court at night. Mostly it was a way for the court to process large numbers of misdemeanors and minor felonies using courtrooms that were occupied by more important cases during the day.

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When I lived in NYC, my girlfriend was a DA, and I used to go watch her in night court (yes, just like the sitcom of the same name). The judge looked like grumpy Gene Shalit and was named Maury or something similar. He had comically over the top judge expressions. The way he said “mister” when addressing a defendant was just a tour de force. He somehow conveyed formal respect, a wink at the ridiculousness of the same, and his own great annoyance at having to be there at 11pm on a Tuesday.

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I like my judge because she has all of the necessary judge expressions from exhausted exasperation to surprised double take. And her eyes practically roll out of her head when the lawyers do something stupid. It’s just fantastic.

You will be shocked to learn that the juror who doesn’t comb his hair and wears a Cheap Trick concert tee and shorts was 45 minutes late, delaying the whole trial.

An interesting thing about the courts here is that in addition to the bailiffs, who are armed sheriffs deputies, there are “court attendants”, who are all kindly, chatty middle-aged women who feel free to empathize with the stress of doing jury duty. It’s a small thing, but being able to have some interaction with someone who’s not a gun carrying loud talker makes a big difference, at least to me.

My parents (both around 80 years old) just got their first dose of the Moderna vaccine! I really want to go have a few moments of emotional relief but I’m stuck inside this darn courthouse.

car mayhem 

2nd day reporting has the youngest person in the Ford Expedition aged 15. The vehicle had no rear seats, but still how on god’s green earth do you get 28 adult-sized people in that vehicle? Also, the driver pulled out in front of a gravel train. I can’t imagine what the driver of that truck must being going through.

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The worst thing about having to jury duty is that I'm going to feel terrible for having rendered my wife a single parent.

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car mayhem 

Reading an article about a car crash in SoCal that killed 15 of the 28 people who were traveling in a Ford Expedition. 28 people in a Ford Expedition!? I don’t see how that can’t include many children. Good lord.

Bonus switch content: I love these nightlight switchplate covers. I have the original SnapPower model, but there are now multiple knockoffs that are probably almost as good.

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It's my turn in the joe-job barrel: People in my Facebook network are getting spoofed messages purporting to be from me. Various helpful friends and family are contacting me to let me know my FB account has been hacked. I'm thanking them without burdening them with my explanations about using 2FA and my passwords having 120+ bits of entropy.

Additional dimmer stuff:

Pros:
- You can dim from both switches in a 3-way
- One tap, go to most recent dimness setting; two taps, max brightness
- Subtle green status lights that are the right brightness in low light
- Designed to work with most modern LEDs

Cons
- 1 vs 2 taps not obvious to noobs
- $$$ ($25-$30 each)
- For some applications I still prefer the definite chachonk of a mech switch

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I’ve installed some of these Lutron Maestro dimmers before, but always as single-pole switches. Today I did my first 3-way switch with them and discovered an amazing (to me anyway) benefit: they’re electronically switched so they don’t have different on/off positions, which means that they don’t have the standard 3-way switch problem of a switch being in the off position while the light is on. Hallelujah!

Massive line of cars at the big vax clinic at the high school. Hooray!

Welp, my kid just accidentally put a big mark on the couch with a fat Sharpie.

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