Friday, February 25, 2011

Awesomeness, Part IV: Reasons Being Secretary X is Awesome

(1) You get to keep your job even when you back-talk to your boss, throw a keyboard at Partner's Daughter, refuse to do your job, and refuse to be at the office before 9:00 or 10:00, or noon, without a call to the office to let them know if/when you'll be in.

(2) You throw rules to the wind when you file documents with the court. Besides, that's why B-Dub carries malpractice insurance, and he's not going to fire you anyways.

(3) Calendaring is merely a suggestion. If you don't want to do it, there is malpractice insurance for that too. Again, not going to get fired.

(4) You have enough attitude for the whole firm. Why change? Attitudes bring color into the office, or is that darkness?

(5) You are apparently responsible to decide whether your supervisors' instructions are important enough to follow.

(6) You can wear jeans every day because all the partners are too scared of you to do anything about it.

(7) Respect for other people is a rule for other people.

(8) If you are assigned work that you don't want to do, tell them you aren't going to get to it and they should handle it themselves if they want it done. Hey, they should be grateful you're telling them now so they can plan accordingly and not let it slip through the cracks, right?

Friday, February 18, 2011

Ignorance is no excuse for the profession

Letter JD mailed to the courthouse in Salem today, February 18:

Dear Clerk:

Enclosed is Document A and Document B. They are due to the judge February 18, 2011.



Dear Genious JD:

There are two problems with your letter that you failed to notice:

(1) Bad grammar: "is" should be "are" because there are two documents; and

(2) Bad timing: mailing something doesn't get it to its destination the same day. Therefore, you can't mail something the day it is due.


Thursday, February 17, 2011

Awesomeness, Part III: Reasons defense law work rocks more than plaintiff work!

For those of you who don't know the difference, plaintiffs file the lawsuit. Defendants are the ones getting sued who are the alleged wrongdoers. I primarilly represent defendants.


(1) You get to poke your nose into other people's medical records, criminal backgrounds, psych records, business records, etc. and they don't have a choice about it. Watch out! I will expose your sexual escapades outside your marriage and bring you down like the cockroach plaintiff you are.

(2) Your paycheck isn't based on results, it's based on the time you spend working on the case. You also don't have to wait to get paid until after the case is over. Cha-ching, baby!

(3) It's a good day when you knock a quadraplegic's payout down a few million dollars. Too bad, so sad we're smarter than plaintiff's attorney!

(4) My clients know I am billing them for every second I spend on the phone or responding to their emails. Because my clients are all about minimizing their fees, they only call me when it's important. I find great delight when my clock runs to 6 minutes, 1 second and I get to bill for 12 minutes!!! (They agreed to those rules, and it's industry standard, so I don't want to hear it!)

(5) My clients make (usually) logic-based business decisions because they are not invested emotionally in the outcome and whether they are "heard." Plaintiffs are usually whiny and try to use their attorney for free psychotherapy. Note: If you're a plaintiff, your attorney cares less about your mental state than I do, because it WEAKENS your case.

(6) We don't look for work like ambulance chasers, the work comes to us. Yep, that's how important I am.

(7) We get to be the first to point out when plaintiffs' attorneys missed their deadlines to move their case forward, and we revel in it!

(8) We have the resources to PREPARE a case for trial. We do prepare, unlike our plaintiff counterparts. And we look AWESOME doing it - lots of fireworks and razzle dazzle!

Yay for defense! For all you litigious plaintiffs, watch out! Ha!

Monday, February 14, 2011

Secretary X still hates me behind closed doors

Today, Secretary X ignored all my questions/ comments, unless she was in ear shot of Associate or B-Dub. If they could hear her, she was sticky sweet and oh so attentive.

Maybe I will grab a stack of work and go sit next to her and act like we're best friends. I could bring her a gift of a photo I made with her head stuck to someone else's body while we are hand-in-hand at the roller skating rink. I could even photoshop in some matching knee-high rainbow socks and '70 style short shorts. (I'm thinking of Farrah Fawcett.) How cute we would be!

Potluck today

Cruise Director sent an email last week (to staff only) that everyone was to bring a potluck dish for our Valentine's Day potluck to welcome our new file clerk.

My thoughts:

(1) Why does the staff have to provide food for the whole office? Don't we slave away enough at the office not to have to slave away in the kitchen too?

(2) Why don't attorneys have to bring something? I thought if you don't bring something to a potluck, you don't eat. Oh, they ate. Most of them hidden away in their offices so as not to come in contact with the lowly staff.

(3) If you're having a "get-to-know [insert name here] potluck," shouldn't that person eat with the whole group for more than 2 minutes? Apparently, according to new File Clerk, that's not true.

(4) How do you react when the staff and Mean Partner debate Justin Beiber's appeal? Thanks to Mean Partner's interest in the Grammys, he is now fully in the know and eager to share his knowledge of current pop culture. (Don't you dare tell him he's wrong!)

(Secretary X ignored invitations to enjoy lunch (without acknowledgement)) Me, no, I'm not surprised.

The day I went crazy and saved Secretary X from getting fired

Last Friday, Secretary X was in a particularly bad mood, as she had been all week. She repeatedly started sentences "As I told you before..."

She got really pissed at me Friday after I asked her to reschedule a deposition per Associate's instructions. Then B-Dub decided in the same conversation that he didn't want to reschedule it. In total, this was a ten second exchange, and I was simply the messenger. She did no work in that time, as we were all discussing a course of action. 

She later told me she was pissed that I "tried to get her in trouble." How those dots connect is beyond me. I told her I was just relaying what Associate told me to tell her and that her problem lies with Associate if it bothers her. Associate later told me Secretary came to her complaining about the same situation. Associate told her to suck it up and not bother her with immature banter. (Way to go, Associate.)

Associate told me she was going to talk with B-Dub to have her fired because she knows how aweful Secretary has been treating me and she wasn't going to stand for it.

I told her not to fire her on my account, because I'm going to ignore it. I explained that this was probably coming from outside sources in her life and I would hope for the same slack if I was having a bad cycle. I told her I would talk with her if it started to really bother me.

She agreed not to talk with B-Dub, but that she would be monitoring the situation.

Hopefully, this weekend provided her ample cool off time to save her job. My efforts will likely not go far much longer.

Monday, February 7, 2011

Awesomeness, Part II: Reasons my job is awesome

Reasons my job is awesome:

(1) I can show up and leave whenever I want so long as I slave away and make my billable hour quota. However, I still have to show up, even if I don't want to (rest assured - I don't want to). So, I guess coming and going is a small concilation prize.

(2) I can work from home if I want. I also have to work from home when I don't want to. Wait a minute, I'm starting to recognize a theme here...

(3) I have a secretary that I can assign the crap work I don't want to do. Now, if I want the work to actually get DONE, assigning her the work really isn't an option.

(4) I manage my own schedule and I'm not micro-managed. Of course, I have to micro-manage my attorneys, who don't have enough time to manage their own emergencies which, in turn, leads to their emergencies taking over my schedule, and the tasks I scheduled for myself get pushed to after-hours work at home. That circulates back to #2 above. (That is possibly the longest circular run-on sentence EVER -- and I am NOT fixing it.)

(5) I have a direct line that I can give out so people can reach me directly without having to deal with our receptionist, who refuses to screen calls, or transfer them to the correct person. Unfortunately, the attorneys give my number out to everyone "in case" the client/ attorney/ judge can't reach them on their direct line. Um, I don't  think "in case" is supposed to be used as a constant. Clients/ attorneys/ judges can NEVER reach the attorneys on their main line, so they call me because I always answer my phone. Then, I put them on hold, go tell attorney they are calling and need to take the call. They ask why the caller is calling, which I tell them, and I tell them the answer to the caller's concern/ question (I can't tell the caller directly because I'm not a licensed attorney). So, I guess I am their glorified receptionist/secretary.  Note: this game doesn't count toward my billable hour quota, so I will have to work more hours at home to "make-up" the time to meet my quota (see #1 and #2 above).

(6) Unlimited paid sick leave (including time off to take care of sick kids). Yes, UNLIMITED. Now, this is a new-age way of telling your employees you trust them and that you don't want them to push their health just for the job. In theory, it is an AWESOME idea. No one abuses the policy because they appreciate it. Here is the problem: the work does not stop while you're out, and you still have to keep up your billable hour quota. They require I make them $15,000 per month average per year, and don't accept sickness as an excuse. So, sick time is more worrisome than it is rest. Hence, I think I get well faster if I'm working like the good little slave I am.

(7) Free lunches for staff meetings. Of course, this means no lunch BREAK.

I am thankful for the many things that make my job awesome.

Wednesday, February 2, 2011

For my mother...

This one is dedicated to my mother, who recently asked why I haven't posted any blog entries lately (Man, my fans sure get testy without regular doses of this Awesomemess).

I don't have anything in particular to say, so I thought I would start a posting series on "Awesomeness." (You're welcome) This one seems fitting for my mom because she had a hand in creating this Awesomeness.


1. I can jump really high. (That was a test to see if you were reading this.)

2. You needn't ask twice for my opinion. Most of the time, you needn't ask once.

3. I am pretty much the funniest person you know, unless you know someone funnier (like TDH).

4. I am brutally honest (not to a fault - that would mean it was a bad thing, DUH).

5. I have learned to somewhat control my rage (against the machine), no, toward Secretary X and the rest of the mindless minions. (What doesn't kill us, enhances our awesomeness. Am I right? Don't answer that.)

More later on this Awesomeness topic.