If you’re the kind of person who has eyes, you’ve probably noticed that you can’t throw a vial full of Botox down an airshaft lately without hitting a cougar licking her wounds in an alley down below. Whether it’s the latest crop of is-Ashton-cheating-on-Demi rumors, or this week’s bombshell about Courtney “Cougar Town” Cox’s recent humiliation at the hands of her soon-to-be-ex hubby, Hollywood news has no shortage of commentary about famous cougars. But starlets aren’t the only targets when it comes to cougar conjecture. Even here in Big Law, the hunt for so-called cougars has been steadily on the rise.
In the past six days alone, I’ve heard not one, not two, but three anecdotes from or about lady lawyers and their brushes with cougardom. The ages of the women in question ranged from 41 to—wait for it—25. Not one is married. Not one is dating. Not one is what you might consider on the prowl or overtly sexy. All have law degrees. And they’re certainly not the only single female lawyers on the unwitting receiving end the “cougar” treatment. Everyone from yours truly to, yes, the newest ladies of the SCOTUS bench, that notorious hotbed of sexy-time shenanigans, have been slapped with the cougar card lately—whether earned or not.
Which raises the question: Does having a law degree automatically make you a cougar—regardless of your age or personality? Well, if the guys keeping score in and around Big Law are any indication, it looks like the answer, like it or not, is hell yes…
Guess we won’t have Kenneth Kratz to kick around anymore. Kratz, aka the Sexting District Attorney, will soon step down as DA of Calumet County, Wisconsin. According to his attorney, Kratz’s resignation will take place before October 8, the date set for his removal hearing. The news was reported on Tuesday by the Associated Press.
Losing his post as chief prosecutor will definitely cramp Kratz’s dating style. He’ll forfeit his high-profile job and its $105,000 salary. He’ll no longer be able to hit on women victims seeking help from his office by sending them text messages that read “Are you the kind of girl that likes secret contact with an older married elected DA?” and “I’m the atty. I have the $350,000 house. I have the 6-figure career. You may be the tall, young, hot nymph, but I am the prize!”
Thanks to the internet, your memory is probably getting worse. But surely you remember our recent Lawyer of the Day honoree, District Attorney Kenneth Kratz of Calumet County, Wisconsin.
A domestic violence victim who turned to Kratz’s office for help claims that the DA sexually harassed her via numerous text messages, trying to convince her to have an affair with him. One of his texts read, in pertinent part, “I’m the atty. I have the $350,000 house. I have the 6-figure career. You may be the tall, young, hot nymph, but I am the prize!”
(Someone should put that on a t-shirt: “You may be hot, but I am the prize!”)
Alas, the recipient of Kratz’s “I am the prize” text may not be the only woman he harassed. Two other women have come forward with allegations against the district attorney — and one of them claims Kratz has some weird ideas about what constitutes a fun date….
Craigslist might have had to close down its adult section, but its Missed Connections area is still alive and kicking.
And that’s a good thing, at least for one UC Hastings law student who had one stimulating lecture with an adjunct law professor teaching intellectual property. The lady was quite taken by the guest lecturer, as the title to her Missed Connections post implies:
You: Adjunct law professor unjustly enriching my imagination – w4m – 25
That’s just the headline. The body of the note is much more steamy.
Maybe not New York Jets talking to Ines Sainz sexy-talk, but pretty damn explicit for an IP law class, taking place on a lazy day out in California…
Quick question: You’re a single guy, let’s say in your late twenties to mid-thirties, with a decent job. Given the choice between the following two single women to date, which one do you choose?
Choice A: A real-world-hot 28-year-old receptionist on her fourth job in three years, who lives with two roommates in a fifth-floor walkup in some outer borough, aspires to someday have a job that gives her either free shoes or health insurance, and only sounds like an idiot when she speaks out loud.
Choice B: A real-world-hot 28-year-old BigLaw lawyer (I know, just go with me here) who paid off her school debt by herself in three years, lives alone in a doorman building in Manhattan, is funny and down-to-earth, and runs a small, successful side business selling artisanal cupcakes that she bakes in her spare time.
Clearly, you choose Choice A. Why? Because, if the status quo in my firm … and in my life… and in my friends’ lives… and in any bar from New York to L.A. is any indication, a law degree confers about as much romantic value to a single woman as a meth habit and a hidden penis.
I am just starting law school and I have a boyfriend from college who’s in a different state now going for a degree in architecture. I like him a lot, but now that I’m here I’m wondering if I should rid myself of the distraction (especially during 1L first semester) or whether I should just start with a clean slate and see what the guys are like here. You’ve been around law school guys, do you think they are worth my time or should I hang on to my current guy unless/until something better comes along?
– Sophie’s Choice
Dear Sophie’s Choice,
This reminds me of those people who roll up to college with framed pictures of their “serious” high school boyfriends / girlfriends (who invariably were still seniors in high school) and leave parties early to return to the dorm to fight on the phone with them at 2 a.m. The primary purpose of these relationships is to provide a security blanket just in case they don’t make any friends in college, and when they inevitably DO make friends in college, the college person breaks up with the high school bf/gf because they finally realize that dating someone from high school is embarrassing and lame and going to prom in the cafeteria via limo is simply out of the question. This applies to everyone except for my parents, who prudently stayed together through high school, college and graduate school, in order to bestow upon this planet myself and two inferior siblings…
You know the old joke: How many Harvard men does it take to screw in a light bulb? Just one; he holds the bulb in place while the world revolves around him.
Many a Harvard man takes that approach to household maintenance, professional endeavors, and even dating. You’re not going to believe this, but some people who graduate from Harvard are real douchebags. Some of them think that just by dint of having gone to Harvard, people will love them, respect them, and shower them with jobs and money. They even make up special phrases for mentioning where they go/went to school, like “dropping the H-Bomb.” Good God, get over yourselves. I’m sure glad my own blazing Harvard credentials, which I keep in special pouch around my neck, have never once prevented me from interacting with the little people in a way that makes them feel like we are all the same species. I’m magnanimous like that.
In all seriousness, there are of course enormous, self-important jackasses who graduate from Harvard, but there are also more than enough people who gladly buy into the Harvard mystique. Now there’s a dating site dedicated to bringing the Crimson and their sycophants together. As they say in Wicked, “they deserve each other.”
Couple forgot to take a photo. Consolation shot of a friend's puppy.
Spring is usually thought of as the time when dating season goes into full swing, but we think summer is when it really heats up — perhaps because of the way that clothing disappears as temperatures skyrocket, as noted in this New York Times piece about half-naked people at a MIA concert on Governors Island. Shirtless women have also been spotted outside of the ATL offices in Nolita.
We hoped the summer heat would generate sparks for two legal types on a recent Courtship Connection date. We set up a litigation associate at a top firm with a government attorney, based on their shared admiration for Justice Brennan. And for cutting things up: If she weren’t in Biglaw, she’d be a pediatric cardiac surgeon, and if he weren’t working for the state, he’d be a chef.
We sent them to Las Ramblas, a tapas restaurant in the West Village, on a Saturday night. He said:
So leave it to Kash to set us up on perhaps the hottest day of a month-long heat wave, despite several alternatives that could’ve worked. I felt like I was melting for most of the night. Heat aside though, I had a good time overall. I thought my date was quite attractive, a couple inches shorter than me, petite, dark hair, wearing a burgundy sundress.
It’s not every day that we see a Biglaw associate on the cover of a celebrity gossip magazine. So we were a bit shocked when a tipster sent along the scanned image (right) of last week’s In Touch magazine, with this message:
The guy identified as “Ali’s new guy” in this week’s Intouch weekly (and pictured on the cover) is a Skadden associate — and I think a fairly well-regarded one at that.
Ali, of course, is the current star of The Bachelorette. Background from our resident celeb gossip expert Marin:
This season stars Bachelorette Ali Fedotowsky, an unemployed 25-year-old who quit her job at Facebook and moved back in with her parents to be on the show. Fans of the series will recall that Ali was a castoff from last season’s Bachelor, where she endeared herself to fans by wearing low-cut dresses, crying frequently, and vaguely resembling a poor man’s Reese Witherspoon as seen in dim light through cataracts. Anyhow, she’s back this season and more determined than ever to find love with one of 25 white bachelors, not including the one Hispanic dude, Roberto.
The Skadden Arps associate is not one of the two lawyers who was competing for her hand on the show. So this story would ruin the season, if true. Who is this associate?
It’s been a while since our last Courtship Connection report. We still have many, many single types in our database, though. We are thinking about having a singles mixer at a bar in New York in July. Is this a brilliant idea or a terrible idea? Please email Kash with your thoughts on this. The key question: Would you come to see the awkwardness if you have to buy your own drinks?
Back to our more exclusive pairings: We set up one Biglaw couple and one Midlaw-Biggov pair. Though Midlaw and Biggov both like tonic as their mixer, they did not mix well. They met at Ginger Man in midtown Manhattan on a Wednesday night. They both live in New Jersey and I hoped this might make going home together easier. Alas, no. She reported:
As promised, he had a copy of The Economist peeking outside of his messenger bag/briefcase. Although the bar was crowded, we were able to find a table in the back so we could sit down and chat without yelling over the dull roar at the bar. Turns out he went to law school with one of my co-workers and we both live in the same town. It was fun getting to know someone new over a beer and chatting about how our jobs are different (I work for a big firm and he works for the government) and favorite restaurants. There weren’t any awkward breaks in conversation and all in all, a fine blind date. But no real connection to speak of so at the end of the night, we were fine with going our own way.
The other couple had a more interesting start to their blind date relationship. I had to cancel their first date at the last minute when our Biglaw woman came down with a serious fever that sent her to the hospital. Did things heat up when the two did manage to meet up?
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Ed. note: The Asia Chronicles column is authored by Kinney Recruiting. Kinney has made more placements of U.S. associates, counsels and partners in Asia than any other recruiting firm in each of the past six years. You can reach them by email: firstname.lastname@example.org.
Deal flow has clearly picked recently up for most US associates, counsels and partners in Hong Kong/China and Singapore. We are on the phone with a lot of these folks on a daily basis, many of whom we have known for years. Further, the head of our Asia team, Evan Jowers, and Kinney’s founder and president, Robert Kinney, frequently meet in person with leading US partners in Asia to assess their needs and keep on top of the inside scoop at as many firms as possible. The need for legal recruiting help in Asia from experienced recruiters appears to be live and well. In March, Evan and Robert were in Beijing at such meetings, in April, Evan was in Hong Kong, and for half of June Evan will be in Shanghai and Hong Kong. Thus its pretty easy for us to tell when there has been an across-the-market pick up in capital markets and corporate work.
On an average day in Asia when Evan and Robert visit firms, they typically have 5 to 9 meetings a day, mostly with US partners in the market. The reason they have these meetings is not simply because Kinney makes a lot of US attorney placements in Asia and that a particular firm may have openings; instead these are just visits with friends. After years of working together as business partners, the folks at Kinney are actually these peoples’ friends. The firms Kinney work closely with in Asia (which is just about every law firm – call us if you want to know the one firm in the world we will never place anyone with again, ever, and why) look forward to the visits, or at least act like they do. After seven years in the market, many of the client partners are former associate candidates. Also, these US partners see Kinney as a very good source of market information as well, because they know how deep their contacts are in the market and how frequently they are speaking to counterparts at peer firms.
In a land that is right here and in a time that is right now, a technology has arisen so powerful that it can replace basic human document review. Is it time to bow down before our new robot overlords?
First, here’s a little story about me: my life in the legal world began as a paralegal. My first case was a GIANT patent infringement case that was already six years old and had involved as many as five companies, multiple US courts, the ITC and an international standards committee. I knew nothing about any of this.
On my first day, my supervisor (a paralegal with at least eight other cases driving her crazy) sat me down in front of a Concordance database with a 100,000+ patents and patent file histories. “Code these,” she said. I learned that “coding”, for the purposes of this exercise, meant manually typing the inventor’s name, the title of the patent, the assignee, the file date, and other objective data for each document. I worked on that project – and only that project – for at least the first six months of my job. After a week or so, time began to blur.
What I know, in retrospect and with absolutely certainty, is that as time began to blur, so did my judgment. So did my attention to detail. If you could tell me that I did not make at least one mistake a day – one inconsistent spelling, one reversed day and month, one incorrectly spaced title – I frankly would need to see your evidence. I would not believe it. The human mind is trainable but it is not a machine.
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