日時 ： 9月21日（日） １４：００－１７：００
場所 ： 渋谷区立大向区民会館 和室1号
Nineteen Minutes by Jodi Picoult
March 6, 2007
①In nineteen minutes, you can mow the front
lawn, color your hair, watch a third of a hockey game. In nineteen minutes, you
can bake scones or get a tooth filled by a dentist; you can fold laundry for a
family of five.
Nineteen minutes is how long it took the
Tennessee Titans to sell out of tickets to the play-offs. It's the length of a
sitcom, minus the commercials. It's the driving distance from the
Vermont border to the town of Sterling, New Hampshire.
In nineteen minutes, you can order a pizza and
get it delivered. You can read a story to a child or have your oil changed. You
can walk a mile. You can sew a hem.
In nineteen minutes, you can stop the world, or
you can just jump off it.
In nineteen minutes, you can get
②As usual, Alex Cormier was running late. It
took thirty-two minutes to drive from her house in Sterling to the superior court in Grafton County, New Hampshire, and that was only if she speeded through
Orford. She hurried downstairs in her stockings, carrying her heels and the
files she'd brought home with her over the weekend. She twisted her thick
copper hair into a knot and anchored it at the base of her neck with bobby
pins, transforming herself into the person she needed to be before she left her
③Alex had been a superior court judge now for
thirty-four days. She'd believed that, having proved her mettle as a district
court judge for the past five years, this time around the appointment might be
easier. But at forty, she was still the youngest judge in the state. She still
had to fight to establish herself as a fair justice -- her history as a public
defender preceded her into her courtroom, and prosecutors assumed she'd side with the defense. When Alex
had submitted her name years ago for the bench, it had been with the sincere
desire to make sure people in this legal system were innocent until proven
guilty. She just never anticipated that, as a judge, she might not be given the
same benefit of the doubt. 』
④The smell of freshly brewed coffee drew Alex
into the kitchen. Her daughter was hunched over a steaming mug at the kitchen
table, poring over a textbook. Josie looked exhausted -- her blue eyes were
bloodshot; her chestnut hair was a knotty ponytail. "Tell me you haven't been
up all night," Alex said.
Josie didn't even glance up. "I haven't been up
all night," she parroted.
Alex poured herself a cup of coffee and slid
into the chair across from her. "Honestly?"
"You asked me to tell you something," Josie
said. "You didn't ask for the truth."
Alex frowned. "You shouldn't be drinking
"And you shouldn't be smoking
Alex felt her face heat up. "I don't --
"Mom," Josie sighed, "even when you open up the
bathroom windows, I can still smell it on the towels." She glanced up, daring
Alex to challenge her other vices. 』
⑤Alex herself didn't have any other vices. She
didn't have time for any vices. She would have liked to say that she
knew with authority that Josie didn't have any vices, either, but she would
only be making the same inference the rest of the world did when they met
Josie: a pretty, popular, straight-A student who knew better than most the
consequences of falling off the straight-and-narrow. A girl who was destined
for great things. A young woman who was exactly what Alex had hoped her
daughter would grow to become. 』
⑥Josie had once been so proud to have a mother
as a judge. Alex could remember Josie broadcasting her career to the tellers at
the bank, the baggers in the grocery store, the flight attendants on planes.
She'd ask Alex about her cases and her decisions. That had all changed three
years ago, when Josie entered high school, and the tunnel of communication
between them slowly bricked shut. Alex didn't necessarily think that Josie was
hiding anything more than any other teenager, but it was different: a normal
parent might metaphorically judge her child's friends, whereas Alex could do it
"What's on the docket today?" Alex
"Unit test. What about you?"
"Arraignments," Alex replied. She squinted
across the table, trying to read Josie's textbook upside down.
"Catalysts." Josie rubbed her temples.
"Substances that speed up a reaction, but stay unchanged by it. Like if you've
got carbon monoxide gas and hydrogen gas and you toss in zinc and chromium
oxide, and...what's the matter?"
"Just having a little flashback of why I got a
C in Orgo. Have you had breakfast?"
"Coffee," Josie said.
"Coffee doesn't count."
"It does when you're in a rush," Josie
Alex weighed the costs of being even five
minutes later, or getting another black mark against her in the cosmic
good-parenting tally. Shouldn't a seventeen-year-old be able to take care
of herself in the morning? Alex started pulling items out of the
refrigerator: eggs, milk, bacon. "I once presided over an involuntary emergency
admission at the state mental hospital for a woman who thought she was Emeril.
Her husband had her committed when she put a pound of bacon in the blender and
chased him around the kitchen with a knife, yelling Bam!"