Unfortunately I have had reason to spend time in another arraignment court room. Not that they are not amusing, with their cocky bailiffs fingering their gun belts, chains clanking and tat's galore, wisecracking with the judge, "Did you see that guys hair??!!" Well hell yeah! Everybody took a sharp intake of breath when he entered the room with his Yellow as sunflowers Mohawk that looked like a roosters crown not combed that morning and listing to the left slightly and totally messed up. I think I actually gasped.
The usual suspects, public intoxication, trespass, terroristic threatening,(astonishingly from a Grandma looking person) (she claimed not to have had her medication that day),concealed weapon, theft by deception, possession of marijuana, and several prostitution! (interesting, they look nothing like you would think a prostitute, excuse me, an alleged prostitute would look like! They look like the worn out house wife who lives across the way). The prisoners were shuffled in last because they did not have representation yet and had to wait their turn.
Every time I find myself sitting in a court room it seems so ripe and seething with the drama of living that I could sit there and be fascinated for days. yet, I understand it also represents pain and sorrow, despair and desperation, poverty and bad judgement.
It brings back the first time I set foot in a court room because I had received a ticket while racing to a wedding that was in another city and I went under a yellow light and was pulled over. I also had an open beer with me....this was over 30 years ago when I was very young and stupid, very stupid.
I was so scared. I had no idea what was going to happen as I had never been in such a jam. I was reluctant to tell my parents. I suppose I forgot they would read about it in the Weekly Mayberry (fictitious name for my home town) Newspaper. The Police Report is what every body reads. It's right next to Church News. (I swear).
I went to my parents house and grabbed some lunch to fortify myself. As I sat at the kitchen table the door opened and my Dad walked in. He had come home from work to have lunch.
In the 25+ year Dad worked for IBM he never once came home for lunch that I could remember. It was so out of the ordinary. I had to tell him what I was doing and together we went to Court. He went to the front of the room, swarming with lawyers and abuzz with activity and spoke for a few moments with one of his lawyer buddies, the county prosecutor.
Mr. G. went to speak with the judge and in a matter of moments we were leaving the court room as the case had been thrown out.
I had not thought about that afternoon in....over 30 years. Now that Dad is gone I find that I have these random memories just bubble to the top of my consciousness.
Sitting in that courtroom I suddenly remembered that day, how the sun was shining and the whiteness of the inside of the courtroom, the huge windows behind the judge and my Dad walking with that calmness and determination that defined him to get his wayward daughter out of trouble.