On the Bureaucracy (TQP0114)

Posted: November 12, 2008 in Braak, Politics
Tags: , ,

Don’t get me wrong; I understand where the Libertarians are coming from.  Getting things out of government services is a pain in the ass at best, and it’s reasonable to think that there must be some more efficient way to get it done.  I’m still in favor of the government running the criminal justice system, though, because the alternative to that is going to be something like wereguild or vendetta, and I just don’t see myself thriving in a situation like that.

Still, the way it works is, government systems are shitty, and the rest of us constantly complain about them and demand that they be improved, so that our lives will be marginally better.  Which is why when I received a juror’s summons, it was necessary that I respond in a civically responsible way.

My letter, after the jump.

Dear the Jury Commissions Office of Montgomery County:

Someone recently received a jury summons for a person named Christopher Broak.  This is not a real person.  I have reason to believe that this is a reference to me, Christopher BrAak, except that this summons was sent to an address at which I have not lived for over a year.  I do not, in fact, live in Mongtomery County at all, but in Philadelphia County.  This is my new address:



As I am sure you are aware, as a resident of Philadelphia County, it is illegal for me to serve on a jury in Montgomery County.

I thought that you knew all about this, because the last time you sent a jury summons to the fictional Christopher Broak, about six months ago, I wrote down on that same summons that this person was fictional, and the person that it might be a reference to did not live at the address in question.  I was subsequently excused from jury duty.  It may surprise you to learn that, in the intervening time, Christopher Broak has not spontaneously come into existence at the address in question, nor have I, Christopher BrAak, inexplicably moved back to my old address.

I do not have a copy of the summons, because it was sent to an address at which I do not live.  The only reason I know about it at all is through a chance conversation on an unrelated subject.  Please update your records, before you’re saddled with the unfortunate and futile task of tracking down a non-existent person in order to fine them for failing to show up for jury duty that they wouldn’t have been legally able to participate in, anyway.

While we’re on the subject:  when I called your Jury Management System (610-278-3215), the nice robot informed me that I would need a touch-tone phone to proceed, and that if I didn’t have one, I could call Jury Information Services (610-278-3215).  I don’t know if this is just a mean trick that you’re playing on people that don’t have touch-tone phones (because, really, who doesn’t have a touch-tone phone anymore?  Do they even still make rotary phones?), but if it’s not, you might want to look into having that information updated.

I am sending this information to you via facsimile transmission, though I am not optimistic that you’ll receive it.  If the robot was willing to lie about what phone number I should call if I didn’t have a touch-tone phone, how can I trust it to give me your correct fax number?  I cannot.  Perhaps this is the fax number for the local Parks and Recreation Office, and the robot is just playing a mean trick on both me and the local park ranger.  And yet I have no other option, since every available phone number you have provided leads only to another potentially malicious robot prankster.

You may confirm receipt of this facsimile transmission by calling me at [redacted], regardless of whether or not you have a touch-tone phone.


Christopher BrAak

  1. deb says:

    I have to know — did they call???

  2. threatqualitypress says:

    They have not.

  3. sassafras says:

    haha! I’d like to see you perform this as a monolgue sometime:)
    PS I actually know someone who has rotary

  4. katastic says:

    In NYC, one must come to 111 Centre Street, which is something like what Purgatory must be like- if Purgatory had an abundance of flourescent lights and numbed, depressed looking people. After waiting 10 to 20 minutes in the obligatory youdon’thavegunsorknivesdoyou x-ray line, you are shown into a room with 80-100 people, all of whom are studiously ignoring a video featuring Diane Sawyer in front of a variety of flag-centric motifs. The highlight of the video is the end, in which a woman interviewed proves that she is the Real Deal, by ROLLING HER EYES and stating in the flattest, least enthusiastic tone possible (and I paraphrase slightly), “It’s a pain in the ass, but meh [shrug] it’s [small sigh] important.”

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