So - I come home from work, and I'm really hungry, so I put some water on to boil to make some whole wheat pasta, and I walk back to my office with my Jury Duty summons in my hand, and I sit down at my desk to ring them to see if I have to report as requested on Monday.
Still in work mode, I mistakenly dial "9" to get an outside line . . . and "1" before the area code . . . and I proceed to dial 911.
They answer immediately . . .
Nine-one-one, What is the Nature of Your Emergency?
What?!?!?!?! Oh My God - 911????? I didn't dial 911!!!!!
Yes, Ma'am, you did. What is the Nature of Your Emergency?
NO! No Emergency!! I'm SO SORRY!!!! No!!! No Emergency!!!! (No Emergency at all except that I'm an idiot) Oh my God - I'm so Sorry!!!
OK, Ma'am (geez - she's calling me "Ma'am." I feel ancient.) Are you at . . . ? (OMG they know where I live).
Yes, yes, I am - I'm so sorry, I'm so sorry.
What's your name, Ma'am? (Ma'am! Again!)
I give her my name - and apologize at least six or seven more times . . .
Within minutes there is a very loud knock at my front door (because my stupid doorbell is, once again, broken), and I think, who could that be? Let me preface the following by telling you that not too much ever happens in the sleepy little village where I live . . .
I'm almost to the door and I can see the police cruiser on the street through the fan glass in the top of my front door (OMG, they sent the police . . .). As I get closer, I see, on my front porch, one very large police officer - he had to be 6' 3" - with a shaved head, black aviator sunglasses, and all the other stuff that goes with being a police officer - you know, Kevlar vest, nightstick, cuffs, gun . . . (OMG, this is terrible - the police are here) I open the door, and the litany of I'M SO SORRY (henceforth: ISS) picks up where it left off.
. . . OMG, ISS, I can't believe they sent you - ISS, I told them it was a mistake - ISS, no, there is No Emergency . . . ISS . . . he said they have to come anyway . . . ISS segues to I'M SO EMBARRASSED . . . and ANOTHER cruiser pulls up . . . OMG, ISS, ISE . . . and he says, yeah, four cars are on the way. . . my hair proceeds to stand on end while my heart starts pounding in my chest (OMG - I'm going to have a real emergency here).
I'm dying. By this time, he's laughing. I manage to calm myself down.
I'm really going to hear about this from all my neighbors (No, no it was nothing - I just dialed 911 by mistake - Yes, just wasting our tax dollars - Why yes, yes I am an idiot - What was your first clue?) . . . I walk down the driveway and out to the street and apologize to the second officer as well, and I beg them not to put it in the police blotter (which is published each week in the local paper). They laugh . . .
I manage to gather some modicum of dignity and walk quickly back up my driveway and into the house. The pasta water is boiling like mad by now, so I put the pasta in and it IMMEDIATELY boils over, dousing the gas - which I quickly turn off - leaving an icky mess for me to clean up.
All because I was trying to call about Jury Duty.
Let this be a lesson in reading comprehension: had I read my jury service summons properly, I would have realized that it is not a Standby Summons (which is the kind I got last time - the kind where you can call and see if you really have to show up), it's a FOR REAL Summons, the kind that demands you appear, no excuses, no standby, no nothing. Show. Up. Which means: THERE WAS NO REASON FOR ME TO BE CALLING IN THE FIRST PLACE!!!! :-S