to celebrate national novel writing month (or the unfortunately nicknamed "NaNoWriMo") this year i will spare myself the white-hair-inducing effects of writing 50,000 words in the month of November by writing a story a day.
these stories will be of any length and veer into any territory i wish. the idea is for me to write one a day for every day of november. these will be first drafts with minimal editing.
if you are into any of it. please comment below! perhaps you can help me figure out if there's ANYthing in these stories worth adapting or polishing into something awesome.
story 16. law & order: nbc. (by jenny yang. monday, november 18, 2013)
“Duty. Duty. Duty Duty Duty Duty Duty. if you say it loud over and over again it sounds so funny. doooodee. dooodee.doodee…”
“shut. up. terry.”
“i’m just saying. it’s just the best word ever to say over and over again!”
terry had a tendency to think out loud. her best friend cindy was pretty good at policing it though.
“what are you, chandler? they already covered this on ‘friends’! don’t mess up jury duty for the both of us. this is a murder case!”
cindy and terry were both waiting to be called into the jury box. they did everything together. they had birthdays together (one was just three days older than the other). they got boyfriends right about the same time, exactly two years after college. they lived in the same apartment in koreatown together. they were lucky they had jury duty at the same time and they were both obsessed with law & order: svu and dateline nbc. “keith morrison could get it” was their mantra.
“don’t make me laugh. they’ll electrocute us if we have too much fun! this is justice, terry! JUSTICE!”
“huhuh. dooodeee.” terry snickered.
they had finally been called into the the courtroom and had watched two batches of jury boxes full of “average american citizens” get the great inquisition and be dismissed.
“that guy totally is getting the axe. look at his beard. hipster face and nerdy eyes. too smart.” cindy pointed to the mumford & sons band member with the vest.
“nah.” terry disagreed. “i can see him as a mixologist. or barista. either one, he takes his beverages way too seriously. perhaps a ‘mixarista’. or is that a multiracial marxist?”
cindy chuckled. the sheriff manning the door next to them cleared his throat and gave them the side eye.
“get it together, tran! we’re getting on this case” terry whispered loudly. they both straightened up.
“weeks of no work. all law & order,” cindy replied.
“okay, please next two rows,” the judge announced.
that was them. cindy and terry stand up in their business casual and march over to fill the empty juror seats in the box.
the lawyers finally arrive at cindy and terry.
“candidate number 15, have you had any direct experience with using firearms?”
terry quickly replied, “no!” followed with a big smile.
“don’t smile when you say ‘no’, terry. what are you a sociopath?” thought cindy.
“god. i need to stop overcompensating. i shouldn’t appear like i’m super eager,” thought terry.
“candidate number 15, is it your belief that laws and governmental authority are always right?”
terry took a long pause. “no. not always. laws are a man-made institution and are subject to the shifts of political change. just because something is a law does not make it just.”
cindy took a deep gulp. “that sounded crazy. they can’t know you’re a raging socialist, terry.” at this point cindy wished her thoughts could’ve been telepathic.
“thank you, candidate number 15. that’ll be all.”
now it was cindy’s turn.
“candidate number 18, have you or a member of your family ever work in the entertainment industry?”
“no. but does handling the box office for a movie theater count? i want to make sure i give you the accurate answer.” cindy got anxious real quickly once she got in the hot seat.
“no. local movie theater staffing does not apply. thank you. next question. have you or any of your friends or loved ones been employed as a school mascot?”
“wow. very specific. yes. my friend in high school was a mascot. she was an ‘anglo-saxon’ and she’s asian. hahah i know. weird.” cindy was definitely not playing it as cool as she thought she’d be.
“thank you, candidate 18.”
cindy and terry exchange nervous glances and each cross their fingers, a habit they picked up and continued even after the magic of pinky swears wore off for most adolescents.
then, more waiting.
after a few minutes of deliberation, both prosecution and defense came back to the judge and announced their eliminations.
“candidate 12. number 14. number 19. number 22.”
“what?!” cindy and terry shouted at each other with their eyes. their numbers were not mentioned. they were in.
finally, when cindy and terry were dismissed, they sped walk out to the wide brightly-lit hallway of the courthouse, turned toward each other and hugged. after the embrace, the looked into each other’s eyes and at the same time yelled, “clunk clunk!”, the law and order sound effect.
this case would change their lives forever.