One thread weaving through The Tree You Come Home To is the trial proceedings. I don’t want to talk much about that here, but I will offer a couple of observations about the court room, including one that still makes me laugh. But first . . . I just said I wasn’t going to talk about the trial proceedings, and I won’t much, just this one incident involving people sitting behind us.
The defense attorney, the toad-like Brad Coffman, was laying into all the things that Casey had done wrong, implying that he was responsible for his own death. Some African American women began muttering (loudly), “So?” and “What difference does that make?” I don’t know who they were or why they were there, but I am so grateful to them!
That’s the sort of unexpected thing that can happen when you’re suddenly thrown into close proximity with people you don’t know, who may not be much like you, but who are sharing a space with you for long enough to make you companions, of a sort.
The second incident was just a comment my son Galen made. We were sitting on the court pews—the place was packed—and other cases were preceding ours. I wanted to listen (human interest, nothing prurient!), especially since a grandmotherly woman was responding to questions about her embezzling of $10,000. But the lawyers sitting at and leaning over the lawyer tables were talking too loudly to hear. Every once in awhile they’d pause to listen to something even they found interesting, but mostly it was as if they were killing time while awaiting their boarding call. It was clear they are important to all that was going on.
Galen leaned over and muttered, “They all look like douche bags.” It just cracked me up. Still does.
[As to a photo to illustrate this post, I looked for one of the statue of Lady Justice that’s inside our Justice Center, as well as photos of the Center itself or of a court room, but didn’t want to violate copyright. A photo of Galen makes sense (he did design the cover, after all), and you can imagine him making that comment when you look at that smile.]