Friday, December 10, 2010


I'd like to take a moment and talk about expectations. This is something for those starry eyed law students or pre-law undergrads. Perhaps it's just being at a large firm but in general, the expectation is that, as a junior associate, the firm completely owns you. Don't expect to make plans with anyone after work, be it a drink with friends, dinner with a significant other or anything else. Odds are, you'll cancel. Don't make plans on the weekends because they own you then too. Bottom line, they expect that based upon your market salary that you are available at all hours regardless of the day or situation. Holidays? They mean nothing. Major life events? What life?

That all brings me back to expectations. Want to be a lawyer? Expect to hate it. If you can be comfortable with doing it just for the money and having no time to share it with anyone, then all the power to you. Granted, that means you're a complete and utter idiot and/or schmuck.

Friday, December 3, 2010


I've come to realize that in many ways I hate sleep. Don't get me wrong. I recognize that on a biological level it's necessary; however, from my perspective it's of a particularly low priority. As it currently stands, I get home from work around 11 or 11:30. My fiance is usually asleep by that time or getting ready for bed. While I could easily go to sleep when I get home, I just can't accept that my life revolves around work, even if it does. So I just avoid sleeping because it wastes a large portion of what little time off that I have.


So it's been a while since I made a post on here. In fact, it's been a while since I did much of anything other than work. If it weren't for the fact that I just plain avoid sleeping I would go even more crazy than I already am.

I'm nowhere close to bonus and I don't even know why I bother working as hard as I do other than the threat of losing my job. Truth be told, I don't think I would even mind if they fired me. The way that they do it at my firm is that you're informed that you're being let go and then, unless you've really burned bridges, you get 2 to 3 months to find something else. During that time you're getting paid and generally don't have to do anything. Not a bad thing, especially when you definitively hate what you do.

Sadly this is not uncommon among lawyers. We're a pitiful group of professionals, universally bitter and full of self-loathing.

Oh well, time to got sleep for another day of fun and intellectual stimulation...

Tuesday, March 9, 2010

The Billable Hour

Being a lawyer, I'm well acquainted with the billable hour. Granted, just becuase I'm familiar with it, doesn't mean I like it. In fact, I downright hate it.

The problem is that it perverts incentives. Normally, work is about being efficient and getting things done. While I'll concede that when a deal has to close, it has to close and the work needs to get done by a certain deadline, I'll also counter that generally efficiency is the last thing anyone in a law firm is thinking of under the reign of the billable hour.

In an environment where bonuses are determined largely on billable hours (and even base salary at certain firms) a lawyer finds him or herself effectively penalized for efficiency. The quality of work could be the same between two attorneys on the same assignment, but if one can get the job done in an hour while the other takes three hours then on paper the slower one appears to be more valuable. If that slower attorney keeps up the pace he might finish the year with a hefty bonus, which his colleague, who has done a similar volume of work but more efficienty, does not receive.

It just doesn't make sense at all. I understand the rationale, since attorneys are billed out to the clients on an hourly basis, but I see things changing on the horizon. Or at least one can hope.



Everyone seems to have a blog today. Defunct lawyers. Successful lawyers. People who aren't even lawyers! Figured it was about time to get one myself.

Why am I here? That's a question I ask myself a lot. Both, in a professional sense and in a metaphysical one. Maybe somewhere in the course of these ramblings I'll figure out an answer to one of them.

In any case, welcome to the fun.