You know that moment in Grease where Rizzo makes fun of Sandy and then Sandy comes back into the bedroom and catches her? Sandy says the infamous line of “You making fun of me, Riz?” And Rizzo says “Some people are so touchy.” I had a moment like that yesterday. And let me tell you, it’s not that fun being on the Sandy side.
I was in court yesterday morning and my client was in custody. In this particular courtroom, the bailiff places the in-custody’s in the jury box to await their turn in front of the judge. We attorneys have to try to lean over the railings to talk to them. To have any kind of privacy, this requires leaning over or standing on the sides and having the person moved to the end of the row. This is normal protocol. For obvious reasons (read: wheelchair) I can’t do that. So the bailiffs let me wheel into the jury box opening to talk to my client. Other attorneys normally aren’t allowed to do that. For me, it’s the only way I can communicate with my client.
So yesterday I talk to my client then we have our minute in front of the judge. I leave the courtroom with the family after my client is escorted back into his holding cell. I’m outside in the hallway when the District Attorney tells me we need to bring him back in to see the judge one more time. I go back in and see two female attorneys joking around near the jury box. I don’t think they were expecting me to come back. One of them says “Oh, we were just joking about how you’re allowed to roll in there, so maybe I should try staying in this rolley chair and she’ll push me and see if we can get away with it.”
I know there was nothing inherently mean spirited in this comment or in their jokes. But, it really does suck. I’d much rather be able to walk over and have to talk to my clients in the same way they do. If they want to find a voodoo witch doctor and we can switch bodies, then by all means, let’s do it. They can roll into the jury box and I’ll skip on down the road.
Maybe I’m touchy like Rizzo claims Sandy to be. Or maybe some people just aren’t as funny as they think they are. Or maybe I should sit back and really wonder why they’re jealous that I get to be up close and personal with my clients. But next time I have a Sandy moment, I’ll be prepared to tell Rizzo to shove it.