Friday, 29 April 2011

Things For Newly-Weds To Take Into Account, And Probably For Judges, Too.

"So, Molly," says Dad, when he phones first thing this morning. "Got the day off to watch the Royal Wedding, have you, then?"

"Yes," I say. "Though I haven't decided whether to watch it or not, actually."

"Oh, for God's sake, I thought you'd grown out of all that left-wing nonsense," says Dad.

Honestly, just because I - very occasionally - agree with a Tory by accident, that doesn't mean that I have become one, does it? And I've never watched any Royal Weddings - or none so far, anyway.

It's not as if I've got anything better to do today, though - unless a gold star might be on the horizon. Max is looking pretty bored this week, after all.

"There goes Will and Kate's sex-life," he says, watching the preparations on BBC One. "Married life starts today."

He makes it sound as if sex is forbidden once you tie the knot, which rather puts paid to the star-earning idea. I may as well go and sit in the garden for the rest of the day and smoke myself to death. Even though I'm pretty sure it's going to rain.

I still haven't got over how fantastic it is to be able to go for a cigarette on my own again - without having to persuade a bunch of militant non-smoking jurors to join me outside, regardless of the weather. (That's when you really begin to understand how it must feel to suffer from leprosy.)

Who knew that jurors aren't allowed to go anywhere without all the other jurors in tow, once they've retired to consider their verdict? I bloody well didn't, and nor did Dan, the only other smoker on one of the juries upon which I sat, during the living hell also known as jury service.

"So," I said, on the first day, when we were huddled together attempting to light our cigarettes in the driving rain, while trying to pretend that ten virtual strangers weren't glaring at us with utter loathing. "D'you think she's guilty, or innocent?"

"Dunno," said Dan. "Whatever the majority think, then that's the decision that I'll go with."

"You can't do that," I said. "You have to weigh the evidence and come to your own decision. There are people's lives at stake, you know."

"There's my sanity at stake, too," he said. "And it won't take much more of this to make me as mad as a hatter. I just want to finish jury service, and get back to my normal life - so I can have a bloody fag whenever I like. Without the chorus of disapproval over there."

He paused, and then stared at me in horror.

"I can't believe I just said that," he said. "Can you?"

"No," I said. "Well, yes, I can, actually. But, seriously, how many trials do you think are decided by this sort of thing? You know, by jurors' nicotine addiction? It's a bit worrying, isn't it?"

"Yes," said Dan. "Especially when you factor in alcoholics, as well. I'm sure that juror called Linda - the one who works in the Silverhill dry-cleaners - has a bottle in her bag."

I wonder how the sex-addicts cope? Not by getting married, that's for sure. Though what time does the Wedding start?

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