Lucy, you got some ‘splainin’ to do
By Margaret Melloy Guziak -
There are many reasons most women loved Lucille Ball and the “I Love Lucy Show.” Her TV character, Lucy, or as her Cuban husband, Ricky Ricardo, called her “Loooosie,” was beautiful, smart, conniving, and sometimes did the unexpected, with or without the help of her close TV friend, Ethel Mertz.
I can only speak for myself, but there were many times I’ve had a “Lucy moment” when I did something unplanned or ridiculous. The latest was last Thursday when I had to report for jury duty at the new Mesa County Courthouse. My name had been selected randomly and like others when we get the official summons in the mail, I wasn’t thrilled at the assignment and didn’t say, “Oh goody, I’m going to be on a jury.”
Realizing it was my duty, as it is for every citizen, to be part of the legal process of affording an accused person his day in court where jurors weigh the evidence, discuss the case behind closed doors with the other selected jurors and make a decision. We realize in America, unlike in many other countries, one is innocent until proven guilty in a court of law. Thursday was my day to be part of that process.
Wednesday night, I worried that I would not get there at the assigned time, which was to report Thursday morning at 8:15 a.m. on the third floor of the courthouse at Main and Spruce streets in downtown Grand Junction. Ray offered to drive me and leave me off at the steps around 8 a.m. that morning. Armed with my jury summons and cell phone to call him when I needed to be picked up if I wasn’t selected from the pool of people reporting on the same morning, I was finally ready to go. At the last minute, I reached into my jewelry box for my favorite “lucky” earrings. They weren’t there, so I quickly picked up another pair and put them on in the hall before rushing out the door to the waiting car.
Upstairs, I sat with another 28 or so people watching an informative video about Colorado law and the different types of cases, before being led downstairs to the actual courtroom to listen to Mesa County Judge Craig Henderson explain that the case would be a Domestic Violence and Destruction of Property Case, giving us the name of the accused. He asked if anyone knew the accused and/or had experienced domestic violence themselves or in their family to raise their hand. They would then be given a chance to discuss it and, if they thought they could not make a decision, they could be excused.
He called out numbers and 12 names to fill the empty jurors’ chairs, and they came forward when their name was called. My name was not called, so the remaining people sat in the audience until the judge dismissed us later. Earlier, Judge Henderson had introduced to the courtroom the lawyer from the DA’s office and the Montrose lawyer for the defendant. Each had 20 minutes to question anyone they wanted from the seated jurors, and they did so. It was a “Perry Mason” moment as we listened to the questions and answers from the selected jurors.
I felt the whole legal process was precise and thought provoking, and although not selected, I was glad to be a part of it. When Ray picked me up, I jabbered away at what had happened, what the case was about and about the jurors who remained. There were two people whom I felt would have been dismissed, based on their answers, but I did tell you I liked the old TV show, “Perry Mason,” didn’t I?
Anyway, on the way home I took off my earrings and looked at them in my hand. Only then did I realize I had worn two different, unmatched silver earrings, the same size but definitely not the same set. Oh no, what must they have thought? Did she get dressed in the dark? Maybe that was why I wasn’t picked. A Lucy moment!
It reminded me of the time years ago when we lived near San Diego. Again, I took longer than expected to get ready for a summer meeting scheduled for a hotel in downtown San Diego. Dressed, I had grabbed my purse and my white shoes from the closet floor, intending to put them on in the waiting car while Ray drove. On the freeway, I looked down and I realized that I had one white pump with a strap and open toes, and the other with a strap and closed toe.
“Do you think we could stop in Mission Valley on the way?” I asked meekly.
“Stop in Mission Valley? For what? We can’t stop anywhere. We might be late as it is,” he answered, firmly.
Reluctantly, I put on both my shoes, suppressing a giggle, and knowing that even if he doesn’t notice, I will have to confess when we get out of the car. Parked, we walked up the street to the El Cortez Hotel, and inside toward their elevator. Luckily the heels were the same height, so I didn’t wobble as I walked.
Standing there awkwardly at the elevator, I pointed down to my feet. “Maybe no one will notice,” I said to him, as an older couple walked across the lobby approaching us.
Frowning, Ray whispered, shaking his head, “Well, the least you can do is limp.”
So I did! And he didn’t add “Loosie,” but that was definitely a “Lucy moment.” I simply shrugged my shoulders, while the lady stared disapprovingly at my shoes as we exited the elevator together.
Thanksgiving is coming
Between Halloween and Christmas, we celebrate Thanksgiving. There is no right or wrong way to celebrate. Some of our friends in southern California headed to the desert and the Colorado River or to Lake Havasu, Ariz., where they ate their pre-cooked turkey dinner at picnic tables, while wearing bathing suits under beach cover-up jackets.
It sure wasn’t the traditional Norman Rockwell Thanksgiving, but it fit them. Pat and Richard loved getting their whole big family together, four-wheeling on sand dunes, or walking along the beach and letting their cousins get reacquainted with each other. Instead of her best china and silver on a white, linen tablecloth, they opted for a Thanksgiving beach party.
There was one thing they always did that everyone does at their dinner table before eating. Each person was expected to say what they were thankful for that year. Some families hold hands to say prayers before dinner on that special day. You decide what works for your family, but make it a sincere, family tradition.
Sure, it will take some planning to figure out what each person should bring and where to set up, but it is definitely worth it. With the Internet and email, it is so much easier than mail and phone messages going back and forth. Again, you are supplying your children and yourself with wonderful family memories. The human connection is so important in this digital age.