By Amy Silverman
By Olivia LaVecchia
By Monica Alonzo and Stephen Lemons
By Chris Parker
By Michael Lacey
By Weston Phippen
Friday, August 15
Dear Diary: We took some votes on a few counts this morning and I got all mixed up. They kept asking me, "Mary Jane, what did we just vote on?" And I held my tongue, which is real slippery. At the end of another vote, they asked again, and I said in a real tiny voice, "Transit tax?" Everyone started making barnyard sounds. I stood up and said I'd made up my mind on all the counts, NOT GUILTY, so we might as well just acquit Fife and go get some PowerBall tickets, 'cause I wasn't budging. And so they wrote a note to Judge Strand. They read it to me, but I was having a nicotine fit and didn't really get it, except for the part where they said I was an "obstruction." Judge Strand wrote something back about how I had to follow jury obstructions. And I said, "Obstruct this!" Eggplant parmesan.
Monday, August 18
Dear Diary: Over the weekend, Chuck and a new friend came and his chum turned out to be a hypnotist. I said I'd always wanted to try it and so he put me under. He said I wouldn't be able to remember what he'd told me. But my mind works in mysterious ways, so I do remember it clear as a bell. He kept saying, "Fife is innocent, and you are rational" over and over in a spooky voice. And I was sad that my friend Chuck nudged him and said, "Make her act like a chicken, c'mon, just once."
During deliberations today, I was calm and rational most of the time, but once when I meant to say Fife is innocent I broke out clucking instead. I also couldn't eat my Chicken McNuggets. I'm starting to think Chuck is a cad.
Tuesday, August 19
Dear Diary: Well, it was D-Day for yours truly. I was dumped. The rest of these satanic jurors wrote another note to Judge Strand and said I wasn't participating in deliberations and seem confused. Well, how would you feel being surrounded by a bunch of commie devil worshippers who are sacrificing small animals in the jury room and drinking their blood? Really--they did it all through the trial. I'd repressed the memories, but they're all becoming clear now.
I got called into Judge Strand's chambers and all the lawyers were in there, too. And they asked me if I knew about the note, and I told them they'd all better repent. Someone said something about me talking in non sequiturs and I said I could speak a little Spanish. Then all the rest of the jurors went in one at a time and probably took possession of Judge Strand because he said he was dismissing me from the jury. I expected him to spit green pea soup at any moment. I couldn't get out of there fast enough.
I got a ride home, and guess who was waiting for me there with Chuck--that nice Flatten boy from the Tribune. He asked me about what was going on in the jury room, and I spilled my guts. It was so therapeutic. Mark stayed a long time, and after a while he said he was hungry and thirsty. I didn't have much in the house but he drank a six-pack of Old Milwaukee and ate a brick of Velveeta and then said he had to go. He forgot his notebook.
Wednesday, August 20
All the journalists want to talk to me. Chuck moved out.