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ATL Idol: Meet the Finalists

ATL Idol Above the Law Idol AboveTheLaw Idol small.jpgEarlier today, we announced that the new editor of Above the Law was going to be picked by you, the readers of the site, through a “reality blogging” competition. We provided some initial information about the contest over here.
We urged you to check back later in the day for the contestants’ bios. “Later” is now; the short intro posts of the competitors are finally available. We apologize for the delay.
Check out the six contestants’ capsule biographies, after the jump.


Here are the bios of your ATL Idols. Each finalist was asked to pick a nom de plume or pen name to write under. Those who still work at law firms have day jobs that they’d like to keep, in the event that they don’t win the contest. The finalists were also asked to pick avatars to serve as their visual representations, which will be used to identify their posts.
We have not edited these intro posts; part of being a good blogger is being able to edit oneself. There was no length limit / word count, although we did urge the contestants to keep things brief (because blog readers have short attention spans).
Remember, these are just short intros. The proof is in the pudding — or the posts, as the case may be. We urge you to wait and see how these folks are as bloggers, as measured by their actual work product, before making up your minds.
And now, without further ado, your six finalists:
1. ALEX
avatar Alex ATL Idol.jpgI grew up in the dirt of a bucolic Midwestern state. I went to law school because smart kids in fly-over states are presented with just two career choices: doctor or lawyer. I flipped a coin. Then, in a moment of rare worldliness, I applied to an East Coast law school. I was undoubtedly accepted in accordance with some sort of geographic diversity initiative.
Attending a top-fifteen law school was a baptism of sorts. My stint as a frat president and a part-time job sorting government mail in college were not among the more illustrious résumé activities. And these kids studied. Jesus. It took me the better part of 1L to realize that mine was not the tightest ship in the navy, not even close. No bother; I had always planned on returning to practice in the dirt from whence I had come. Strip mall office, courthouse gossip, Rotary Club, three page motions.
Early interview week screwed that up. As soon as I donned my Jos. A. Banks tie and gripped my shiny black attaché, I was afflicted with a strange and foreign malady: I wanted to work at a big fancy law firm and never see the light of day again. Man, did I hustle my ass around those hotel rooms, smiling and gushing over firm technology and pro bono programs. I lucked out, scoring a gig in the DC office of an AmLaw 100 firm. So I’m in biglaw now, more or less.
My point is this: I know small-building lawyers and I know tall-building lawyers. I have a healthy in-the-club contempt for both. I don’t take myself seriously. I don’t have a nylon bag with my firm’s name emblazoned on it. It wouldn’t hurt my feelings to start a sole practice in a backwater state, and it wouldn’t kill me to continue to successfully navigate the bureaucracy and ennui of a 500 lawyer firm. I think it’s all kind of funny. I like to talk about it; I’m ready to write about it.
Vote for me! Soda pop in the drinking fountains, etc.
2. ARNIE BECKER
avatar Arnie Becker ATL Idol.jpgArnie Becker has been practicing law in the Los Angeles area for several years. Arnie’s practice areas include general business litigation, class actions, investment fraud, trademark litigation, and unfair competition cases. Arnie has spent his litigation career working in large international law firms.
When he is not practicing law, Arnie moonlights as the editor/owner of a small on-line publication. Arnie’s work as a writer/editor has allowed him to meet many talented writers (outside the area of law). Arnie believes being the Editor of ATL would be a great opportunity to combine his interest in writing/editing with his legal education and experience.
avatar Exley ATL Idol.jpg3. EXLEY
I’d thought that I might have a lot to say about myself for my “ATL Idol” bio — even cut my nails just before I sat down to write this — but I don’t. I’m just a mid-level associate going through the typical mid-level crisis, which is like a mid-life crisis except instead of thinking about all the hot women with whom you could’ve (totally) shacked up, you think about all of the awesome career paths you could’ve (totally) followed. I live in New York. I’d like to see female litigators embrace the term “clitigator.” I don’t drink diet soda.
4. FROLIC AND DETOUR
avatar Frolic and Detour ATL Idol.jpgI’m an Ivy League girl with a Midwestern attitude. It took me years in a clerkship, a big firm, and a small firm to realize that what the legal world needs is more snickering and fewer motions to compel. Here on ATL, I’ll make it my business to bring you the arbitrary and delicious. When you’re stuck in your office with fourteen crates of documents and a sense of impending doom, I hope you’ll drop by and take me for a spin… everyone deserves a little Frolic & Detour.
5. MARIN
avatar Marin ATL Idol.jpgMarin is very excited to be in the running toward becoming America’s Next Top ATL blogger. Marin quit her job in Biglaw to pursue writing, stand-up comedy and a wildly lowered standard of living. Marin developed and wrote the “Stalk of the Town” feature for Gawker and continues to post celebrity sightings for the site. She maintains a blog, Living in Narnia, which she anticipates will make her repulsively rich just as soon as she figures out how to put ads on it. She holds a B.A. (magna cum laude) and a J.D. (magna carta).
6. SOPHIST
avatar Sophist ATL Idol.jpgSophist enters the fray excited to put his analysis mixed with ranting on display for the entertainment of Above the Law’s readers. Most recently he could be found blogging for the New York Press and reporting for City Hall News.
Prior to following his dream of sparking controversy with little accountability, Sophist dutifully completed his indentured servitude at Biglaw in the big city. There he won consecutive “Idiot” awards as the top billing associate in his class, at a firm with no minimum billable hours requirement.
Sophist received both his B.A. and J.D. from Harvard University because he is stubborn and dislikes being asked to leave. When not deconstructing the choices of public figures, Sophist enjoys criticizing his friends, family, and when everybody else stops listening, his dog. Counter-intuitively, he believes his glass house provides the perfect vantage point for stone throwing.
Earlier: Welcome to… ATL Idol!

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