We call it Skaddenfreude: taking pleasure in the misfortune of others who work at large law firms. Today’s tale of Skaddenfreude involves a contract attorney working a project in the Chicago office of Kirkland & Ellis.

Let’s kick it off with a picture….

In the picture above, note the helpful instruction to dispense coffee or hot water “into your cup” — as opposed to, say, down your pants. Our source explains:

We’re on a project where there are tons of contract attorneys on separate floors, and K&E put up these signs since other doc reviewers decided to brew coffee without actually realizing they needed to have ground coffee in the filter.

Yes, we’re doc reviewers and we aren’t real attorneys, but come on! Do I really need to be told to place my cup under the coffee maker’s opening?

Some attorneys lack common sense, to be sure, but this is going a bit far.

Alas, K&E contract attorneys have more to worry about than patronizing instructions on coffee machines:

The environment here is god-awful — literally. We have 10 people in a room of less than 200 square feet of space. It’s in the middle of the floor where “real people” actually walk by and stare.

It’s almost as though we’re looked at as animals. I could go on and on, but I need to hit my number of docs per hour just so I can keep my “legal” job.

At this rate, it won’t be long before K&E places a sign outside this 200-square-foot room, to warn the associates and partners: “Don’t feed the contract attorneys.”

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