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X Men small X Summers X Summer Associates Abovethelaw Above the Law blog.jpgMany summer associate programs are over, but our series of SA stories is not. If you have one to share, please review our submission guidelines, and then email us.
Connoisseurs of urolagnia will enjoy this latest tale:
1. Superhero name: Golden Shower
2. Special power(s): Urophilic voyeurism.
3. Summered: the Dallas office of a large Texas law firm, summer 2005.
4. Claim to fame: From our tipster:

“One night, some of us, including [Golden Shower], were invited to a partner’s house for dinner. Another summer associate brought his girlfriend.”

“The partner’s house didn’t have locks on the bathroom doors. When the girlfriend went to the bathroom, she was followed inside by [GS]. She was embarrassed, but assumed he had walked in by accident.”

“But instead of leaving, he asked her if he could watch her pee. When she protested and told him to leave, he begged and said that it ‘wasn’t a big deal.’ He finally left only when she made it clear that she was about to scream.”

Poor Golden Shower. So he likes to watch — is that so wrong? We can be so puritanical sometimes. Why not live and let live, pee and let watch?
The conclusion of this story, after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “X-Summers: Golden Shower”

We continue our series of posts on the perks / fringe benefits of large law firm life. Today we cover a rather important subject that we have not yet hit. From a tipster:

Operation youre the doctor Abovethelaw Above the Law blog.jpgI really like your series of posts on this topic. As a rising 2L about to enter OCI season, I am curious to know which firms have nice fringe benefits and which ones have cut all possible corners to match market pay.

However, you seem to have left off the grand-daddy of ‘em all: healthcare! I would imagine different firms have different health care and dental benefits.

Now, we weren’t sure this would be that interesting a topic. We’d expect most top firms to have similarly top-shelf health insurance plans. But our tipster provided some anec-data that suggests otherwise:

I heard of one southern California litigatrix leaving one of the L.A. “Big 3″ for another because [of health insurance issues]. She had regular health problems, and the difference in health plans was significant to her well-being.

Very interesting. Maybe we should we all move to Cuba? Michael Moore says the health care over there is faboo.
Please discuss legal employers and their health care benefits, in the comments. Thanks.

Richard Posner Richard A Posner Above the Law Legal Blog.jpgThe rail-thin Judge Richard Posner (7th Cir.), who favors grapefruit for dessert, has this to say about fat people over at his blog:

It makes sense, as the recent article in the New England Journal of Medicine finds, that friends’ fatness would have an influence distinct from that of the culture as a whole….

In my own ingroup of 16 judges (11 active members of my court, 4 senior members, and 1 nominee, who will replace an active member who will be taking senior status), only 2 are overweight (12.5 percent), compared to a nationwide average of 66 percent. Among my other friends, judicial and otherwise, the percentage who are overweight is probably no greater than 12.5 percent.

When we read this, we guessed that one of the two overweight judges was Chief Judge Frank Easterbrook. After all, a fondness for Arby’s Melts is not a recipe for thinness. But one ex-Seventh Circuit clerk we contacted disagreed:

Actually, Easterbrook has lost a lot of weight. I am not sure who [Posner] meant. Also query whether he used the rigorous BMI > 25 test.

Good point. Did Judge Posner run around the Dirksen Courthouse with a pair of body-fat calipers? Or did he just eyeball his colleagues in the robing room, to see who was sporting muffin tops?
To Seventh Circuit groupies: Which judges are packing a few extra pounds underneath their robes? Please enlighten us, in the comments. Thanks.
Social Obesity — Posner’s Comment [The Becker-Posner Blog]

robot intellectual property IP law Abovethelaw Above the Law blog.jpgAs law firms around the country raise associate starting salaries to $160,000, some people are wondering: What about intellectual property shops?
We don’t think there’s much to this story. It’s our understanding that most top IP firms are already at $160K (and have been there for quite some time). As everyone knows, IP is hot these days.
But it appears that some IP firms are just arriving at the party (even if the biggies have been there for a while). For example:

McDonnell Boehnen Hulbert & Berghoff LLP, an IP boutique in Chicago, raised starting salaries to $160k effective September 1. See here.

As far as I know, it is the first Chicago IP firm to raise to 160k.

Feel free to discuss associate compensation at IP firms in the comments. Thanks.

Summer associate stories. Wacky farewell messages. Two great tastes that go great together.
Some brief background, from a tipster:

This kid was a summer at Davis Polk, and his farewell email has made the rounds in both DC and NYC. For anyone who knows him, it is no surprise….

[He] believes that we should not have a republic, but that an autocratic state would better suit everyone. He usually speaks in latinate phrases like “Hail, brother, farewell,” and he would send out emails all summer about obscure historical books to recommend to his fellow summers.

Check out the farewell email, and vote in our poll, after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “A Summer Associate Farewell Email: ‘WHEREAS, I Am a Tool’”

* Karl Rove — who had some role in the U.S. Attorney firings, but is refusing to testify to Congress about it — is stepping down at the end of this month. [Wall Street Journal; Washington Post; New York Times]
* Grand Theft Auto fans rejoice, return to parents’ lonely basements. [MSNBC]
* Tax law awaits Bonds HR ball. [Yahoo]
* Sexual assault claim at Playboy pajama party. [MSNBC]
* More on the punter-stabbing punter: not guilty of attempted murder, but guilty of assault and psychotic desperation to be starting punter for a division I-AA program. [ESPN]

100 dollar bill Above the Law Above the Law law firm salary legal blog legal tabloid Above the Law.JPGNone of these items is new. But as we were going through our overflowing inbox — if we owe you an email, we apologize for our delinquency (or blame our spam filter) — we came across some associate pay raises not previously mentioned here:

1. King & Spalding: We provided extensive coverage of their recent raise in Atlanta. But we forgot to mention that they also raised starting salaries in Houston, to $160,000 for first-year associates (effective August 1). Memo after the jump.

2. Hunton & Williams: This news surfaced in the comments, but we also received it by email: “Hunton in DC raised to $160k. Memo is floating around, though unfortunately I don’t have a copy.” (If you have the memo, please email us.)

Update: One commenter claims this news is incorrect. But as another commenter notes, the $160,000 starting salary appears in Hunton DC’s NALP form. We trust the NALP form.

3. Allen Matkins: We weren’t familiar with this 200+ lawyer, California-based firm. But since a tipster sent us their pay raise memo, we’re happy to post it (also after the jump).

As always, we rely upon you, our readers, to keep us updated on associate salary developments. If you have news and/or a memo that we haven’t previously posted, please email us. Thanks.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Nationwide Pay Raise Watch: Odds and Ends”

Ivy Briefs True Tales of a Neurotic Law Student Martha Kimes Abovethelaw Above the Law blog.jpg* This may come as a surprise to some of you, but Chambermaid isn’t the only law-related book that has been published in the past six months. Check out Nicole Black’s enthusiastic review of Ivy Briefs, by Columbia Law School grad Martha Kimes. [Legal Antics]
* Harvard Law School snags Bill Rubenstein, a prominent gay law prof. So why are they keeping it on the down low? [Leonard Link]
* Justice Alito thinks some of his colleagues need to shut their pieholes. We think their first names rhyme with “Beano” and “Even.” [Legal Times via NYM Daily Intelligencer]
* Sarbanes-Oxley: Hot or Not? [DealBreaker]
* More advice for Loyola 2L: If your non-Biglaw job doesn’t pay you enough, try dumpster diving! [ABA Journal]
* Willkie gets sued — and we’re reminded of this lawsuit. State and local governments don’t seem to like Biglaw much these days. [San Diego Union-Tribune]
* Hold the cheese. Or get sued for lots of cheddar. [Charleston Daily Mail]

Amtrak train Abovethelaw Above the Law blog.jpgUsually when we highlight individual lawyers or judges in these pages, it’s to poke (good-natured) fun at them. But it’s Friday afternoon, so let’s send you into the weekend on a warm and fuzzy note.
From a reader who was on the train today:

A man in his mid- to late-twenties, wearing a yellow shirt and carrying a Jones Day bag, helped carry an elderly gentleman onto the train and into his seat. Around an hour into the train ride, the old man’s wife tried to wake him up, but could not.

The Jones Day man lifted the gentleman out of his seat, placed him in the aisle, and began CPR. The train conductor’s took over, the train was put onto a side track, and EMS was called.

Unfortunately, all efforts to resuscitate the man were unsuccessful. We were later transferred to another train. On this second train, which was now overcrowded, the same man later gave up his seat when an older passenger got on.

Not all that humorous, but I thought this chivalry by a “Big Bad Biglaw Lawyer” might merit your attention.

Indeed it does. We thank our reader for this interesting story — and commend the Jones Day fellow (associate? paralegal?) for his kindness and human decency.
(And now, back to your regularly scheduled programming. Whom should we make fun of next?)

Linda Greenhouse 6 New York Times Abovethelaw Above the Law blog.jpgTo follow up on our earlier post, here’s an update on L’Affaire Linda, from the Columbia Journalism Review:

Linda Greenhouse has written a letter in response to C-SPAN in which she defends herself against their accusations. In it she claims that the “issue is not one of ‘open media access to public policy discussions,’” as C-SPAN’s Terence Murphy wrote in his letter, but “one of communication and simple courtesy.”

Ignoring the question of whether she received an email warning her that C-SPAN was going to be present, Greenhouse writes, ” I learned about the plan to cover the Supreme Court panel only when I showed up and saw the cameras. Prof. Gajda told me yesterday that she had only learned at 5:00 p.m. the day before that C-Span intended to cover our panel.”

Read the rest — plus a bonus Linda Greenhouse Rap!!! — after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Linda Greenhouse’s Reply Brief”

LEWW logo.jpgBefore we begin, a nod to one of the best wedding write-ups we’ve seen in a while, and for once (just once) we’re not being the least bit tongue-in-cheek. Joanne Handler and John Rau III didn’t make our final three this week, even though John has a law degree, but . . . wow. They are 50-year-olds (very attractive 50-year-olds) who dated for a year in college and then broke up when he transferred to another school. John married someone else, but Joanne stayed single, still pining for John:

“I never forgot about him, because he was the love of my life,” Ms. Handler said. “For 30 years, I was never in love with anyone else. I had long-term boyfriends, but I could never get married because I could never love anyone the way I loved John Rau.”

But this three-hanky chick flick has a happy ending. The spinster librarian (really!) received a call from the recently divorced John in 2005:

I was shaking with joy when John called,” Ms. Handler said. “For 30 years, I knew that we were meant for each other, that he was the perfect man for me. I knew I was right.”
So did Mr. Rau.

Beautiful. [And now we'll pause while everybody Googles their college crush -- and their spouse's.]
But back to what this column is really about: raw, choking prestige.
Here are our three finalist couples (all lawyer-lawyer pairings):

1. Nicole Lipman and Michael Ellis
2. Alison Sclater and Wells Dixon
3. Sofia Yakren and Boris Bershteyn

More about these couples, after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Legal Eagle Wedding Watch 8.5.07: From Russia with Love”

Sidley Austin Brown Wood LLP logo Abovethelaw Above the Law legal blog.JPGSome good news, from a very happy tipster:

Sidley has just announced that they have raised clerkship bonuses to $50k! YES!

We’ve confirmed this raise with sources at the firm. So you can treat it as confirmed.
Update (2:55 PM): In response to some follow-up questions from us, the firm’s D.C. hiring partner, Joseph Guerra, explained:

“It applies to all domestic offices, and the bonus is the same for a one-year clerkship, a two-year clerkship or two one-year clerkships (provided one of the two isn’t a Supreme Court clerkship).”

Happy Friday!

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