Bent over and carrying the stench of a geriatric corpse, Tim Black raised the muzzle of every dog on the block when he went to go retrieve the mail. Where was that evil odor emanating from, the canine stewards wondered? With a whiff of human urine mixed with a tad of fecal material containing undigested prunes, the pungent stink was responsible for a host of dog nostrils sampling the atmosphere to try and pinpoint the epicenter. Tim struggled with the mailbox’s complex access system. Pushing on the circular rolled up tab at the top produced no entry and neither did a left or right tug on the unyielding handle. Success came when Tim succumbed to the brutal exercise that mailbox placed on his failing strength and opened when the weight of his limp hand pulled open the lid. Oh yeah, Mr. Black thought, just like yesterday. Tim reached into the cavernous container and pulled out 2 articles of commercial correspondence. One was a flyer from the local mortuary that offered a discount on funeral services during the month of February because of the least amount of deaths that take place for obvious reasons. The other was a summons to be a jury member. Tim’s wrinkle framed eyes sparkled as bright as a 65-year-old set of peepers could. A couple of memory cells fired in that bleak balding cranium, bring back memories. Tim in his younger days, made decisions about the fate of individuals who entered his office. Does he stay or does he go? Compassion or condemnation? Life or death? Tim Black was a sensible man in his prime. He figured if you went to court for judgement of a crime, you were guilty. Otherwise, why did the cops arrest you? There’s no way these soldiers of the Constitution could make a mistake. “Hang the prick,” he hollered. As he strolled back to his future hospice, a slight breeze freed the summons from his feeble grip and an unknown human received a reprieve. On the long journey back to the front door, Tim’s diaper failed and the local dogs howled. 

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