Romance and Dating

Supreme Court 6 Above the Law blog.jpgOur obsession with Supreme Court clerks is longstanding, dating back to our blogging for Underneath Their Robes (where we used to profile SCOTUS clerks). And it seems we’re not alone in lusting after the Elect.

Apparently oral argument makes people think of other oral activities. Check out this “Missed Connection” from Craigslist:

Law clerk at SCOTUS honest services argument – w4m (Supreme Court Building)

We were both there to hear the honest services arguments, which were fascinating. You were siting with the law clerks, I think, so I’m wondering if you’re one of them. You looked slightly older and more mature than the rest of the people you were sitting with. You’re quite handsome and I enjoyed watching you as you followed the arguments. Too bad you left at the case break–I’d been trying to catch your eye. (I was sitting in the front row of reserved seating.) I promise that if you agree to meet me for dinner that I won’t mention Black or Weyhrauch. What say you?

If you’ll forgive the quibbling, this posting is subpar; it’s missing some information. First, the poster has omitted her age (which typically goes after the “w4m”). Second, she offers little identifying information about herself (e.g., “I was wearing a red scarf”).

Third, she offers little identifying information about the clerk, other than that he’s “more mature” and “quite handsome.” We suspect that every male Supreme Court clerk fancies himself “more mature” and “quite handsome.”

Typically a missed connection involves, well, a “connection.” The lack of identifying information suggests that no such connection was forged here. But we admire the poster’s effort.

This is not, by the way, the first time a CL “Missed Connection” has arisen out of a Supreme Court argument.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Looking for Love in All the Wrong Places? A Craigslist ‘Missed Connection’ at the SCOTUS”

Christina Ambers lawsuit co-op.jpgYesterday I had the quintessential New York City moment. At the bodega around the corner from Breaking Media’s lavish Nolita office, the bodega’s proprietor engaged me and two other people in a conversation involving three languages. I was speaking English, another guy was speaking Spanish, and I believe the third woman was speaking Portuguese, and the bodega owner was talking to all of us and translating where necessary.
I love this town!
I would have loved this conversation if we had been talking about dog poop. But instead the four of us were talking about a lawsuit that New Yorkers have been buzzing about all day. The cover story in yesterday’s Daily News involves a pretty lady (pictured) suing her co-op board:

Christina Ambers, once dubbed the “Heidi Klum of foot models,” says a romance with her porter-turned-husband, Angel Rotger, turned her into a pariah among workers at 340 E. 74th St., who made her hail taxis and retrieve packages on her own.
“I hope that people can understand how awful it is to come home and to then be treated with hostility in a building where I have paid a lot of money to live,” Ambers told the Daily News. “Nobody should have to live this way.”

Oh, to live on the Upper East Side — as I do — is to know the true definition of pettiness.
At the bodega, I made the mistake of telling my interlocutors that I “write a legal blog.” At that point, the bodega owner, the construction worker who speaks Spanish, and the Brazilian nanny had all kinds of legal questions.
Details about the suit and the street-level reaction, after the jump.

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love matchmaking sex ivy league.jpgWhen we tried to launch the ill-fated Courtship Connection, a matching service for ATL readers, we were stymied. Matchmaking was hard (especially when people didn’t respond to our e-mails).

Maybe we should have organized singles parties instead. That’s how the Ivy Plus Society operates. Whereas Courtship Connection sought to match up legal types, this dating society wants to bring together potential mates from elite universities. It had its inaugural D.C. event on Friday, reports ABC News:

Requirements for membership in TIPS are strict. Attendees must have attended one of the eight Ivy League schools or a handful of other TIPS-approved institutions. The University of Chicago and the Naval Academy qualify for the list.
If you were a graduate University of Virginia School of Law graduate, OK, you can attend. But, if you studied at UVA only as an undergraduate, sorry. UVA doesn’t make the grade.

[UPDATE: As noted by a commenter, UVA undergrad is now on the list. Perhaps there was an outcry over its original omission?]

“You can only be so superficial for so long,” said one young college graduate at Friday night’s event, who preferred to remain anonymous. He said he’s tired of trying to meet potential mates at general admission bars and parties. “I would like to find people of equivalent educational background — too dicey to go to a bar and find that. It’s nice to know, generally, people are going to be closer to your intellectual range.”

Because it’s not superficial to date only people from top-ranked schools…

So which law schools make the cut for Ivy League Plus?

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Craigslist small.jpgLike most people, I’m having trouble focusing on my duties given the perils of Balloon Boy, Falcon Heene. According to my television, the balloon is down, there is no boy in it, and as of now we don’t know where the boy is. And the parents were on Wife Swap. Here’s a write-up of the episode the Heene family was featured on. Crazy story.
Of course, multitasking is an important life skill. It’s a skill that one law student hasn’t seemed to master, at least when attractive women are around. Here’s the Craigslist ode from a law student somewhere in the D.C. area to an apparently stunning vixen:

Morally Bankrupt – m4w
I saw you in my bankruptcy class. I was so distracted by you that I could barely pay attention to the riveting lecture about the history of bankruptcy law. I imagine that you are a creditor and I am a bankrupt and I will have to work off my debt for you or risk debtor’s prison. You can have whatever you want; no state law exemptions. I want you to declare bankruptcy all over me.
I am sick of ending my nights pro se. I promise if you entertain my claim that you will have a huge judgment entered in your favor over and over again. We can even violate the Model Rule of Professional Responsibility and engage in a 108(j).
My interests include hilarious law-based puns; and mocking others. If you think we are a match, let’s grab a drink after class. I know it’s a weeknight but my parents let me stay out as late as I want to as long as I call by 11pm to check in with them.
P.S. I am neither the ginger nor the weird guy next to you.

Beautiful bankruptcy babe — you know who you are — it looks like you have a not-so-secret admirer. Let us know if it works out.
Morally Bankrupt [Craigslist]

see no evil hear no evil.jpgHere at ATL, we’ve received many, many emails about “no offers.” We’ve provided extensive coverage and open threads galore.
The general message conveyed in these comments and emails is that firms somehow “owe” full-time, post-graduation employment to their summer associates. Under this line of thinking, once firms invite law students to spend a summer with them, they’re inviting them to move in after graduation.
That line of thinking is very 2006.
Times have changed, kids. In 2006, bright law students were hot and desirable; all the firms wanted to get into bed with them. Law students today, however, are like single women over 35. They’re desperate — and firms are warier of committing to them.
Perhaps law students should be thankful that firms want to date them at all. Let’s consider the evidence.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Summer Fling, Don’t Mean a Thing?
(Or: Another perspective on the summer associate experience and no offers.)”

Notes from the Breadline Roxana St Thomas.jpgEd. note: Welcome to the latest installment of “Notes from the Breadline,” a column by a laid-off lawyer in New York. Prior columns are collected here. You can reach Roxana St. Thomas by email (at roxanastthomas@gmail.com), follow her on Twitter, or find her on Facebook.
On a drizzly Thursday morning, my friend Giovanna calls to invite me to lunch. “I have a window between a meeting and a conference call,” she says, referring to concepts that are increasingly foreign to me. “Come and meet me.”
“I don’t know,” I say guiltily, tallying the lunches, dinners, and coffees to which she has treated me in the past few months, “you just bought me dinner.’
“Don’t be silly,” she says cheerfully. “Consider it a public service, since you’ll have to shower.”
“Whoa!” I tell her, “let’s not be rash.”
“Take a shower,” she says sternly. “I’ll meet you downstairs at one.”
A few hours later, we are sitting at a restaurant. Giovanna is dressed beautifully for work, her hair and makeup perfect. Although I have showered, I realize that I could easily be mistaken for her maid. We talk about her new colleagues, her most recent deposition, and my job search, before the conversation turns to what women invariably talk about when they talk to other women: men.
Sitting at the table — hands wrapped around our coffee cups, voices lowered conspiratorially — I am reminded of television commercials in which women confide sheepishly about unseemly problems, like occasional irregularity or embarrassing ring-around-the-collar. But, before a chipper paid spokesperson can appear, offering us laxative yogurt or assistance with our laundry woes, we identify the issue at hand: DWUI.
No, puzzled readers — not that DWUI. Without diminishing, in any way, the seriousness of operating a motor vehicle after tossing back too many suds or hitting the pipe, let’s be clear: we are talking about something entirely different. We’re talking about the insidious problem of Dating While on Unemployment Insurance.
Read about the perils of DWUI, after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Notes from the Breadline: Alone, Alone, Alone”

Suffolk Uniersity Law School Suffolk Law cupid.jpgThe Boston Globe runs an advice column called Love Letters. It’s no Pls Hndle Thx, but it does get a different kind of questioner than we do here at ATL. This week, the love seeker is a lawyer — and he is understandably quite proud of that fact. Perhaps there are ladies who read Above the Law who would like to give him a call? Here’s the lead in to his question:

I’m a 25 year old attorney who graduated from Suffolk Law last year and hopes to get into politics some day. Aside from my career aspirations I am desperately looking for a girl who I can sweep off her feet and live happily ever after. I mean, I have never had a problem finding pretty girls and have always been a sucker for intellectuals like myself.

But wait, there’s more. This Suffolk Law intellectual doesn’t want to sweep just any girl off of her feet. She must be the right kind of girl:

But what I have found repeatedly is that I always run into two types of women; the feminist types who hate being treated like a lady (hold doors, pay for dinner, walk on the outside of the curb, etc.) and put their careers before anything or anyone else. Then there are the girls who use me because I have a good career and are only interested in what I can do for them (concerts, purses, jewelry, all within 3 weeks of the relationship) but never get emotionally attached.

Okay, buddy, let me give you a couple of tips. First, treating a girl “like a lady” is a lot easier if you don’t condescend to her; avoid calling her a “feminist type.” Second, the law is a service industry. Some ladies think that you have incorporated that knowledge into your personal life. Get with the program.
After the jump, our Suffolk brother just gets disgusting.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Ladies, Are You Looking for Love in Boston? Try Suffolk Law”

sweet hot justice logo.jpg[Ed. note: The following piece was authored by The Legal Tease, of Sweet Hot Justice fame. Check out her other musings from Sweet Hot Justice here.]
Quick question: When you think of the average married, middle-aged guy slogging his way up the Big Law partner track, what’s the first thing that comes to mind? A pasty, bloated puppet? A bald head? An over-worked, under-stimulated robot, bunking in at the office while the wife lies safely, if not securely, back at home? Well, if the state of affairs in and around my firm is any indication, you’d be off the mark — way off the mark. Because as far as I can tell lately, when it comes to Big Law romance, a wedding ring is the new corporate aphrodisiac.
Just last Thursday, I was at a happy hour with a few guys from work when one, a married finance associate named Carson, suddenly came back from the bar, flushed and jittery. He claimed that a woman had just sidled up next to him, put her hand next to his, fingered his wedding ring and cooed out of the blue, “I think married men are sexy.” Carson, a sweet, former engineer and admitted card-carrying nerd, was so flustered that he took off without even taking the drink he’d just bought. So, obviously, the woman was a hooker… right? Who else would come up to a skinny, bling-free dork at a bar and lay down a line like that? Why not target the group of buzzed, Brioni-bearing bankers two feet down? Or could it be that this woman actually just had… a thing for nerdy married lawyers? A niche fetish, if you will? Sort of like those women who only date death-row inmates and convicted arsonists?
I chalked it up to a random anecdote and put it out of my mind. But then, just a couple of days later, at dinner with my friend, Kirsten, a single, fourth-year Big Law employment litigator with a lawyer’s brain and a stripper’s body, I started to wonder. I was telling her about my latest experiment in humiliation — one that found me crushing on (and then promptly crushed by) a charming, flirtatious client who turned out to be covertly engaged — and she actually put down her watermelon mojito mid-sip, shot me a look and told me I should’ve just “gone for it.” When I asked what exactly there was to “go for” in this situation, she shrugged and looked down.
“I don’t know. It’s just easier.” She then told me that she was in the middle of a “successful” affair with a married associate at her old firm. She explained that she wasn’t particularly head-over-heels, but the arrangement worked just fine because, after working insane hours week after week, she was able to get what she wanted and knew where she stood. And in case I was wondering, yes, she was the one who targeted him. My thoughts shot back to Carson and his fingered wedding ring. It was my turn to put down the drink.
More after the jump.

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Ed. note: Have a question for next week? Send it in to advice@abovethelaw.com.
This week, we’re changing things up a bit here at Pls Hndle Thx. Does this have anything to do with the fact that the usual problem-response-counter response-response format is getting a bit tiresome? No! It has everything to do with this week’s salacious question:

pls hndle copy 2.jpgATL:
I have a crush on one of the ATL staff. I’m not going to give gender, and I won’t say anymore. You know me; I comment under the name “Guest.” You’ll recall that Meade, Ann Althouse’s commenter suitor, asked in her blog’s comments how he could win her affection, and Ann gave him some advice. Now I’m asking you all for your advice. How can I win this person over?
Cyrano de B.

If you wannabe my lover, you gotta get with my friends, the Spice Girls once sang, so I took their wise advice and went straight to the sources themselves — Lat, Elie, Kash and Roxana — to ask what it takes to be their Rock of Love.
Gentlemen?
Elie: I like women who are demonstrably more intelligent than me, with large breasts. Which pretty much exactly describes my wife. Actually, it perfectly describes my wife. My wife is perfect. In every way. Are there other women? I didn’t notice. Can I go home now Marin? I have to make some space for myself on the couch.
Lat: Charmingly eccentric, boyishly appealing, well-educated professional seeks same. Enjoys reading (mostly fiction and periodicals), blogging, theater, film, going to the beach, riding in cars with boys, getting free stuff in the mail, and drinking vanilla soy milk. Quintessential Gemini, with a wide range of interests and a weakness for novelty — willing to try almost anything once. Stalk me on Facebook or Twitter.
But we’re not done yet. Find out what kills with the Ladies of ATL, after the jump.

double red triangle arrows Continue reading “Pls Hndle Thx: Don’t Stand So Close to Me”

Notes from the Breadline Roxana St Thomas.jpgEd. note: Welcome to the latest installment of “Notes from the Breadline,” a column by a laid-off lawyer in New York. Prior columns are collected here. You can reach Roxana St. Thomas by email (at roxanastthomas@gmail.com), follow her on Twitter, or find her on Facebook.

Cliff does not understand why attorney layoffs — mine or anyone else’s — are, well, newsworthy. This comes to light when I show him what I think is a fairly remarkable story about a partner at Pillsbury Winthrop who, in a display of consummate indiscretion, broadcasted the firm’s layoff plans to his fellow passengers on the Washington-to-New York Acela train (via loud cell-phone conversation).

“Pretty fucked up, huh?” I say. He shrugs. Crickets chirp. “I don’t know,” he finally answers. “I don’t get it. I don’t get the whole thing.” I try to explain why I think the story is remarkable. First, there is the obvious matter of the partner’s imprudence, and the thoughtlessness of announcing personnel decisions that will affect people’s lives — people like me — to the passengers on the 2:00 train. Second, I tell him, putting aside the fact that widespread job losses are the foremost indicator of what feels like our profession’s implosion, they are often fashioned as “stealth layoffs.” Pillsbury had already engaged in some stealth layoffs, and although it is not clear that the partner’s unofficial press release (in the form of poor volume modulation) thwarted the firm’s plans for another, the possibility gives the story a “gotcha” quality.

But, it turns out, while the term “stealth layoff” may be part of every lawyer’s lexicon at the moment, it does not have universal currency. “What are ‘stealth layoffs’?” Cliff wants to know. Growing exasperated, I try to explain the pernicious “enhanced performance review,” and its insidious corollary, the “performance-based dismissal.” My indignation is not contagious: Cliff remains unmoved. “These are private companies,” he says. “I don’t see why they have an obligation to announce anything about who they choose to fire, or why.”

People get fired, he says: it sucks, but why should we expect law firms to act any differently than any other employer? Cliff has worked in advertising for the better part of two decades, where, apparently, things work differently; when he was working at big ad agencies, he tells me, people were fired all the time. In fact, firings usually coincided with payday, so if you got a paycheck you knew that you were safe for a little while longer.

Once, years ago, when he was working at one such agency, someone from management went around and put stickers on the doors of selected offices. Everyone who got a sticker assumed that they were going to be canned, so that later, when they were herded into a conference room, they were prepared for the ax to fall. Instead, they were told that they “were the future of the company,” but that everyone else was being told to pack up and leave. The chosen ones were then sequestered in the conference room until the unfortunate ones, who hadn’t made the cut, were shepherded out of the building. No one had any warning of what was about to happen, much less an expectation that they would get three months of severance.

I understand what Cliff is saying. “But,” I remind him, “you told me that the last few times you were fired, they escorted you out as you threw things down the hall and yelled obscenities.” I also recall him saying, at some point, “Wow, I can’t believe you’re still going into the office. I would be walking in with a can of gasoline.”

“I didn’t say that it doesn’t suck,” he concedes. “I just don’t understand why everyone thinks that these law firms owe them something.”

Is Roxana’s significant other being insufficiently understanding? Read her reflections on lawyers’ love lives, after the jump.

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