In pursuit of justice: My judicious search for lunch | ALL ABOARD

Ever have an opportunity to serve as a juror?

“Jury service” had new meaning for me recently as our 40-plus person Superior Court jurors’ pool emptied into the streets of Coupeville for our almost-enough- minutes mandated lunch break.

Having had Thanksgiving dinner there once before, I headed to the West Winds Café inside Whidbey General Hospital. A great bang for your buck if you don’t mind lunching with white-coated people who wear stethoscopes as scarves.

Seeing the crowd of chewers and little table space remaining, I quickly returned to my 1986 Chevy Durango pick-up to proceed across town to the Prairie Red Apple Market for a quick sandwich and a pop. I still had plenty of time to chow down and floss before returning to the courthouse to see if I made the cut.

After 36 years of attempts, I have never been selected to serve on a jury.

Ever since “12 Angry Men,” I have wanted to be in that back room making the right decisions, fair and impartial.

However, the jury was out on getting a quick meal at the grocery store with several dozen hungry Coupeville High escapees ahead of me in line. Talk about tuna salad sandwiches and taquitos!

Returning to my truck food-free, I saw Freeland’s Cathy Hatt carrying some sacks to her car.

“Why don’t you try Miriam’s or the County Deli? They are both real good.”

With plenty of minutes to go, I drove a hundred yards or so and turned left into Miriam’s parking lot.

Excited to once again be in the sunshine, I paused, knowing I could get a great sandwich to go.

Standing in front of the deli order window, I heard a voice whisper in my short-term memory: “You can’t have Panini. Your crown is cracked.”

Who knew Humpty Dumpty was a dentist? So, I drove back across the highway, making the lights just like a local, and headed to the County Deli, a long-time fave of jurisprudentialites.

Seeing the crowded parking lot, I parked on the street, across from a place called Kimo’s Island Barbecue. Great location. Nice Victorian. Then I noticed the To-Go Carry-Out sign and realized I better not get sauce all over my suit pants. Not if I wanted to be a juror.

So I got back in my truck after seeing the slammed County Deli. Must have been the Taco Salad Tuesday sign that pulled in those potential jurors.

I drove by Knead ’n’ Feed, Mosquito Fleet and Toby’s.

No parking on the street.

I didn’t have time to walk out to Kim’s on the wharf for chow, so I zoomed up the hill to Christopher’s.

Are you kidding? It’s lunch time, Freeman.

By now, I was so hungry that I thought of going into the post office to lick stamps.

Then I remembered they were self-adhesive and drove to the Oystercatcher.

Closed today only.

So, back to the Prairie Market where I had been many minutes earlier.

This time, no kids, no crowd, and I spotted a cheeseburger in foil.

Juror food alert!

Wolfing the burger down en route to the courthouse, I was comforted knowing that I might soon be one of the lucky 12 to serve, and that I would not have a growling stomach in the jury box.

Inadmissible evidence for sure.

Upon returning from lunch, nevertheless, heretofore, albeit not taken personally, I was not selected. Something about excessive sarcasm during voir dire.

Thank goodness mom made me take Latin, so I knew what voir dire meant.

Once again, I had “to speak the truth.”

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