Wednesday, December 29, 2010

Sometimes, justice is dumb

I'm a businessman and kind of a big deal so I have a lawyer on retainer. I retained his business card and will call him if and when I ever need some legalistic assistance (that's what that means, right?). I was very careful whan I selected my lawyer because there are some legal firms that I have no intention of dealing with, based solely on their name. I mean specifically the legal firms that list a person's name more than once. I do not care for that. You know what I mean. Firms like "Schwartz & Schwartz" or "Smith, Smith, Smith & Smith". This is a very stupid practice and one that is limited almost entirely to the naming of legal firms. If you ever walked into Dunkin' Donuts and said, "I'd like a medium coffee with sugar, sugar & sugar and cream & cream.", they'd call the cops on you.
My reason for avoiding legal firms that do this has less to do with it being dumb than it does with what I perceive as their skill level in mediating conflicts and settling matters effectively, which is the main reason anyone ever hires a lawyer...
"Well, we're all set to open. 'The Bartlett Law Firm'. Mom would be so proud! How exciting!"
"Yeah, sure, exciting for you maybe."
"What's the matter? You don't like the name? It's perfect! Simple, elegant, tells who we are and what we do..."
"Tells who you are and what you do. That's your name in giant letters. Nobody's gonna know a thing about me."
"What are you talking about? That's your name too. We're siblings. We have the same name."
"How is anybody supposed to know that? They just see 'Bartlett', assume it's you, doing great. Again. Where am I? Oh, probably huffing mineral spirits in an abandoned tenement building, as usual."
"Stop. That's crazy. For all you know, they could assume it's you and you're successful and I'm turning tricks behind the bus station to make enough money for a ticket to Jacksonville, except I'm really not interested in going to Jacksonville; I just like turning tricks behind the bus station."
"Well, see? Not such a nice feeling is it?"
"I guess you're right. So now what?"
"We're lawyers. We have law degress. We passed the bar exam. I'm sure we can figure out a way to solve this problem."
"Hey, I know!"

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