Ideas for things to do...

Applespider

macrumors G4
Original poster
I'm currently on jury duty which so far has involved sitting in a room from 10 til 3.30 waiting for my name to be called out to go to a court. We can't listen to iPods since the calling is done over a tannoy, we can't take laptops since they're not allowed into court and there's no safe place to leave them (similarly we're not supposed to have mobile phones).

So far I've read 3 books, knitted a denim sock for my iPod, done several crosswords and su dokus and chatted to various others stuck in a similar situation...

...while i enjoy reading, I've discovered that I really can't do it for 8 hours a day regularly and I'm beginning to climb the walls. Anyone got any other ideas for things that I can do in a reasonably small space, that won't disturb others and that I can put away quickly in case I get called to a courtroom?
 

miloblithe

macrumors 68020
Nov 14, 2003
2,076
28
Washington, DC
I'm always a fan of making long, pointless lists:

Countries you've been to or places you'd like to go.
Jobs you've had.
People you've smooched, etc, cross-referenced with their and your ages at the time.
Computers you've owned.
Great empires through history.
Powerful states and their heads of state backwards through time.
Knitting projects you'd like to do.

my god, the list of lists is endless.
 

mcadam

macrumors 6502a
Apr 3, 2004
593
0
københavn
I would bring a nice little sketch book and a good pen and draw. Perhaps make yourself an ongoing project, like a comic book story... "Steve J and the Windows of Perception"... a full page each day that you post here for all to enjoy. That should keep you busy.
Great idea if you ask me.

A
 

feakbeak

macrumors 6502a
Oct 16, 2003
925
1
Michigan
If you like math I know a little "brain game" that I do sometimes when I get caught in such situations. You can play alone or with others (if you can find others in your situation that like math as well). I won't bother describing the game unless someone is interested - let me know.
 

tobefirst

macrumors 601
Jan 24, 2005
4,025
1,135
St. Louis, MO
feakbeak said:
If you like math I know a little "brain game" that I do sometimes when I get caught in such situations. You can play alone or with others (if you can find others in your situation that like math as well). I won't bother describing the game unless someone is interested - let me know.
Hook me up!
 

MongoTheGeek

macrumors 68040
Start writing. Get any story ideas you have stuck in your head out.

Start drawing. You only become good through practice. Look at your fellow jurors, the judge, the bailiff, the attorneys. Draw them. Swap heads. Swap clothes. Draw them naked.

You mentioned the iPod sleeve. Knit a sweater, put it on, unravel the bottom to knit into a scarf. Knit love messages into the scarf. Hold it up to someone and wink.
 

AppleMatt

macrumors 68000
Mar 17, 2003
1,779
9
UK
Buy a brain-teaser like 3D puzzle, like the Bedlam Cube or something.
It'll keep you occupied for hours, and will probably get those around you interested and talking. Hell, after a few hours everyone might be shouting "no put the L bit there! No, the other way around! Spin it!"

Alternatively, leave. I would. Life is short, they should give a descent timeframe instead of expecting you to just accept their schedule.

AppleMatt
 

clayj

macrumors 604
Jan 14, 2005
7,472
180
visiting from downstream
Take a copy of Crime and Punishment in and start reading that... they'll let you out of jury duty. :)

EDIT: Even better: The Executioner's Song by Norman Mailer.
 

rainman::|:|

macrumors 603
Feb 2, 2002
5,438
2
iowa
...Yeah Clay has the right idea... only, you need some better reading material... Does the KKK have a magazine? Is there a book on how to batter women? These are all prudent things to bring to jury duty selection...
 

Applespider

macrumors G4
Original poster
Blue Velvet said:
Please, please post a pic of your knitted denim iPod sock! :)
Here goes - sorry for the delay, I decided to add a pocket for the headphones. It looks more denim-like in daylight - it's a little plain blue here.

Harder crosswords are out - I can only do cryptics if I can get in the head of the compiler. And I generally realise within 30 minutes whether that's possible - perhaps trying today's stealing a few tomorrow's answers might work.

Drawing - I can't draw for toffee or it would be a great idea. My creativity in art class always lay in the collage/pottery aspects. I'd love to try a comic strip but I doubt any of you would be able to recognise anything in it!

Writing - Sounds promising but I tend to 'write' into my Mac now. Not sure if I could go back to longhand and then try to translate my writing back into the Mac again. But I guess I could always plot out some ideas and try to keep my train of thought til I get out again - only bad thing might be if I get so carried away that I keep working out plot points while I'm supposed to be listening to evidence.

Crime and Punishment :D Bear in mind that being stuck in that room is punishment enough. I'm currently working my way through Peter Ackroyd's History of London with an A-Z alongside.

Brainteaser puzzle is a good one. If I get out early tomorrow, I might go look for a few.

More knitting is possible tho I prefer to do that watching TV (and no, the daytime TV in that room is not watchable!) - not sure about the message tho - there's noone in the room worth sending them too!

Thanks for the ideas, please keep em coming
 

Attachments

Noobtrainer

macrumors newbie
Mar 31, 2005
1
0
AppleMatt said:
Buy a brain-teaser like 3D puzzle, like the Bedlam Cube or something.
It'll keep you occupied for hours, and will probably get those around you interested and talking. Hell, after a few hours everyone might be shouting "no put the L bit there! No, the other way around! Spin it!"

Alternatively, leave. I would. Life is short, they should give a descent timeframe instead of expecting you to just accept their schedule.

AppleMatt
AppleMatt, can you pleases check your PM? Thanks.
 

Blue Velvet

Moderator emeritus
Jul 4, 2004
21,652
123
Applespider said:
Here goes - sorry for the delay, I decided to add a pocket for the headphones. It looks more denim-like in daylight - it's a little plain blue here.

Very nifty... and the pocket is such a good idea.
Don't tell anyone here, they'll all want one. :)

Sorry I couldn't help with the ideas...
 

wdlove

macrumors P6
Oct 20, 2002
16,570
0
Applespider said:
Here goes - sorry for the delay, I decided to add a pocket for the headphones. It looks more denim-like in daylight - it's a little plain blue here.

Thanks for the ideas, please keep em coming
Your knitted iPod sock looks very nice. Why not start a cottage industry, then you could list your item on eBay. With all the order that you will probably receive, that could keep you more than busy.
 

Eevee

macrumors 6502a
Aug 10, 2004
791
0
New Haven, CT
Nice iPod socks!

Looks really cool!

Have you read the Lord of the Rings series? If yes, then re-read it again. Great books!
 

TheGimp

macrumors 6502
Jun 14, 2004
391
0
anywhere, usa
Applespider said:
I'm currently on jury duty which so far has involved sitting in a room from 10 til 3.30 waiting for my name to be called out to go to a court. We can't listen to iPods since the calling is done over a tannoy, we can't take laptops since they're not allowed into court and there's no safe place to leave them (similarly we're not supposed to have mobile phones).

So far I've read 3 books, knitted a denim sock for my iPod, done several crosswords and su dokus and chatted to various others stuck in a similar situation...

...while i enjoy reading, I've discovered that I really can't do it for 8 hours a day regularly and I'm beginning to climb the walls. Anyone got any other ideas for things that I can do in a reasonably small space, that won't disturb others and that I can put away quickly in case I get called to a courtroom?
Get a Sony PSP, the games Lumines and Wipeout Pure (superset the two), an extra memory stick to put some music on, and you're all set. It also comes with Spiderman 2 the movie, so if you haven't seen it, you can kill a few more hours (good enough to watch twice). If money is no object, I recommend a spare battery pack in case you won't be near an electrical outlet to recharge.
 

homerjward

macrumors 68030
May 11, 2004
2,745
0
fig tree
TheGimp said:
Get a Sony PSP, the games Lumines and Wipeout Pure (superset the two), an extra memory stick to put some music on, and you're all set. It also comes with Spiderman 2 the movie, so if you haven't seen it, you can kill a few more hours (good enough to watch twice). If money is no object, I recommend a spare battery pack in case you won't be near an electrical outlet to recharge.
he's in the UK and, iirc, those aren't out there yet.
i'd suggest bringing paper, writing senseless notes on it, then crumpling it up and throwing it at people/across the room. :p i also have this folder for Multimedia class that i draw random cartoons, etc. on when i'm bored. although i doubt they allow sharpies in there.
 

rdowns

macrumors Penryn
Jul 11, 2003
27,345
12,408
Sucks that you can't bring laptop or use iPod. I had both for my last stint in federal court.

How about bringing cards or dominoes? Should be able to get a game of Texas Hold 'Em going.
 

feakbeak

macrumors 6502a
Oct 16, 2003
925
1
Michigan
"The Number Game"

tobefirst said:
Hook me up!
First of all, let me apologize to all those who dislike math, you'll want to skip this post right now.

A Thai college friend of mine taught this game to me. He and I would play when we were bored in class or other times when we were stuck waiting with nothing to do. Personally, I think it is just as fun to play alone from time to time, it certainly passes the time. My friend said he learned it from some TV show in Thailand. I am shocked that this would be part of a TV show contest, but hey, I'm used to American TV with reality shows about nothing. I wish we had that show here in the states.

These rules might not be exact because I've only played this with my Thai friend using our "house" rules. I don't even know if there is an official name for this game, we simply called it "The Number Game". Yup, we were a real creative pair.

Rules:
1. Pick 5 numbers, 1 through 9.
2. Pick 1 number in the range 100-500 - this will be the desired result. You can try other numbers too, but this range works well.
3. Find an arithmetic expression that uses each of the five numbers exactly once that yields the selected result number.
4. Valid operators: + - * ÷ ^ √ (add, subtract, multiple, divide, exponents and roots)
operator caveat: For exponents you need the number for the base and exponent, same goes for roots with the exception of square rooting a number, you don't need to use a 2 for that. You do need to use a 3 for a cube root and I've never needed to use a higher-level root in a solution so I wouldn't worry about those.

In multiplayer mode the goal is to be the first to come up with an expression that yields the result. Sometimes it is impossible to get the result exactly, in which case, the goal is to be the first to find an expression that yields a result closest to the desired result. When you play by yourself it is simply to find a solution, or many, or the closest possible solution.

Tips:
1. Exponents are your friends - they get you big numbers while still leaving you some numbers to work with to obtain the result.
2. When it comes to picking result numbers prime numbers are more difficult to work with than composite numbers (in general). If you are having difficulty pick lower numbers, if you want a challenge pick larger numbers.
3. Get a good range of numbers for your five numbers to work with. Trivial sets like 1,1,1,1,1 or 1,2,3,2,1 won't get you very far.

Example
Numbers: 1 3 4 5 8 --- Result: 231

Solutions:
3^5 - 8 - (4*1)
(√4)^8 - 5^(3-1)

You can get some additional solutions by making trivial twists on these solutions . In #1 - Multiply 1 anywhere else in the process. In #2 - swapping (√4) and (3-1).

This one was close: (3*5)^(√4) + 8 - 1 = 232

Can anyone find any other solutions to this example?

Hopefully, that gives you a good feeling for the game.

Perhaps we should set up a running thread, posting problems and solutions of this type - just like they do for the movie quotes. I'm certainly no good at those, but I could handle these well enough. Anyone interested? Where's Doctor Q??? :)

Hope the few math/number enthusiasts enjoy the game. For the rest of you who suffered through this post, I know... I'm a big math geek!
 

yellow

Moderator emeritus
Oct 21, 2003
15,925
1
Portland, OR
Ooooo glad I came across this thread. My wife is about to go in for Federal jury duty. I'll have to buy her a couple books.
 

Doctor Q

Administrator
Staff member
Sep 19, 2002
36,029
3,245
Los Angeles
I've played a variation on that game, where you try to make as many integers as you can out of a certain number of a certain digit, plus all the parens and operators you like.

For example: using four 2's:

0: 2+2-2-2
1: (2+2)/(2+2)
2: 2^(2-2/2)
3: 2+2-2/2
4: 2+2+2-2
5: 2*2+2/2
6: 2*2*2-2
7: (2^(2^2)-2)/2 <--- oops, that's one too many
8: 2^(2+2/2)
9: (2+2/2)^2
etc.

There was an Apple II game by Sunburst based on that idea, named "How the West Was One Plus 3 x 4".