Weirdness

Mahbod Moghadam of Rap Genius

F. Scott Fitzgerald once opined that there were “no second acts in American lives.” Similarly, Biz Markie once opined “’cause we all pick our boogers sometime every day.” If you’re already lost, allow me to explain. This is the story of a former Biglaw attorney and his second act. He and his friends started a website devoted to rap lyrics. The website annotates rap lyrics, and it’s this system of annotation that the founders of the website hope will take over the web (including legal research). The website was recently funded by venture capitalists, and the resulting hype has ping-ponged across the web at a pace so rapid that you’d be excused if you made like Steinski and wondered, “What does it all mean?” (affiliate link).

The interviews that have fed the myriad profiles of the site’s founders have been nothing short of entertaining. Just last week, Gawker was prompted to write a guide to the site, rapgenius.com, which managed to sound both condescending and wildly equivocating and which did nothing but illuminate the author’s squeamishness. This promises to not be like that. I don’t know if Rap Genius is going to be Wikipedia or Pets.com.

What I do know is that a Biglaw dropout just ganked $15 million from Marc Andreessen and wants to edge out Westlaw and Lexis (good luck with that).

Keep reading to find out where he went to law school and what firm he worked at. And if you want to see his shirtless YouTube diss track (no homo)….

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You can feel it when the conversation is about to go there. Someone mentions a funny name. Maybe it’s a celebrity name, like Apple or Pilot Inspektor. And before you know it, you’re smack dab in the middle of one person’s tale of his brother or his cousin. Maybe it’s his cousin’s brother who worked in a hospital or who was a school teacher. Well, it’s this distant relative who encountered the Lemonjello. His brother Orangejello was the slow one, this lying jerk will say. And then the table will erupt into uncomfortable digressions on race and naming conventions. People care about baby names. A lot.

And so it is that we’re confronted with news out of Staten Island, where a judge ruled against a pastor’s attempt to change his family’s name.

Straight from the slums of Shaolin, the Wu-tang Clan strikes again. The Rza, the Gza, Ol’ Dirty Bastard, Inspectah Deck, Raekwon the Chef, U-God, Ghostface Killah and …

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Drew Peterson

The filing should be stricken. It’s absolute insanity. It’s bizarre beyond belief. It’s so unbelievable, I don’t know what to say. I’m speechless.

– Joel Brodsky, lead attorney for convicted murderer Drew Peterson, responding to attorney John Paul Carroll’s motion for a new trial. Carroll has not been involved in the case thus far, except as a consultant to advise Peterson about his pension rights.

When we posted video of Lil Wayne’s deposition earlier this week, we knew the epically rude (and vaguely threatening) clips would lead to comment gold.

Because nothing leads to jokes and jokes and jokes like one of the most absurd personalities in hip-hop culture thrown into a room with a buttoned-up lawyer.

The post had quite a few quality entries, like DoctorChimRichalds’s suggestion that Weezy should have pleaded “the Fizzifth.” Dr. Richalds was good, but not quite the best this week. What?

But we do have a Comment of the Week winner. Yeaaaaaah! Shall we see who it is? OKAY!

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FOIA requests: how do they work?

As our resident Juggalo columnist mentioned in August, the minions of crazed rednecks who worship at the altar of Violent J and Shaggy2Dope — otherwise known as the Insane Clown Posse — are not at all happy that the FBI has labelled them a gang. To defend their honor, as well as their right to get wasted and throw absurd parties in the middle of nowhere, the Juggalo nation has decided to launch a Faygo attack on the Pentagon sue the FBI.

Looks like these clowns aren’t clowning around….

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When people leave the Chicago office of Sidley Austin, they do it in style. Remember the humorous departure memo of partner David B. Johnson, who left the firm to pursue a career as a novelist? Or the epic farewell message of associate Tyler Coulson, who left to hike across the country with his dog?

(And write a book about the experience, with a great title: By Men or By the Earth: A Corporate Lawyer Walks Out on Law, Love, and Life, and Walks Across America With His Adopted Dog (affiliate link).)

Today we have news of another lawyer leaving the Chicago office of Sidley. But this departure reads more like a mystery novel than a memoir. Let’s find out who’s leaving, even if we don’t yet know why….

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Like this, but way, way more terrible.

I’ll be honest, I didn’t really want to write this story because it hurts just to think about it (well, that and knowing all the BikeDude comments I’m going to get). It’s pretty straightforward, at least as far as stories about deaths allegedly caused by penis enlargement injections go.

According to law enforcement allegations, a dude wanted a penis implant, so he paid a woman — who had zero medical training — to inject silicone into his junk. It ended up in his bloodstream, and quicker than a bunny rabbit trying to make love to a balloon, he was dead. Now the woman is being prosecuted for manslaughter.

Welcome to New Jersey!

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A few months ago, I wrote a post entitled “Welcome to Zombie Law 101″ about a professor’s law review article that dealt with zombies. It was a fun, quirky piece, but I figured that would be the start and end of zombie law. Well, I was wrong. A new Kickstarter project helmed by attorney Joshua Warren is raising funds to create a zombie law case book. Yep.

Part of me thinks this is pretty cool. Nerdy, but cool nonetheless.

Although, I’m a little worried that continuing to cover zombie law could eventually lead to zombie lawyers, and no one wants that. (I object, Your Honor! Counsel is eating the witness’s face.) I guess we’ll cross that bridge, and loot liquor stores for food and weapons, when we come to it. For now, let’s learn more about the project….

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We’ve recently encountered an unusual number of unconventionally-formatted court documents. To name a couple, there was that graphic novellette of an amicus brief, and the Emily Dickinson-inspired judicial order.

Today we’ve got another brief that wouldn’t appear out of place on a Reddit thread.

It’s not high-quality art by any means, but there’s (maybe) something to be said for illustrating your points with clip art of crying babies and crickets chirping.

And besides, isn’t humor the best way to win an argument?

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We have covered Texas attorney Adam Reposa several times over the years here at Above the Law. He’s a quixotic fellow, yelling insanely in his commercials while smashing a large pickup truck into a smaller car, labelling himself as bulletproof, and facing unusual contempt charges.

We’ve never successfully spoken with Reposa directly, but a recent interview with one of his closest frenemies, who happened to direct the famous “I’M A LAWYER!” ad, gives some cool insight into the non-traditional attorney’s persona.

In the brash, entertaining interview, Bob Ray gives real talk on Adam Reposa and explains the history of that poor pickup truck (can you say alternative fee arrangements?)….

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