Confessions of a Laid-off Lawyer

Just Your Average Joe Blogging Away His Debt—In One Year or Less

Stupid Cupid

with 11 comments

Total Black: $1,066.57
Total Red: $228,913.98

Happy Valentine’s Day!  Not much of one here.  I worked two shifts at the theatre and had to smile and beam at all the happy couples (both straight and gay) and giddy families coming to see the shows.  And both shows were sold out too so that meant a lot of patrons.

No one wished me a Happy Valentine’s Day.  No heart-shaped nothing here.  No Valentine’s Day note in my locker.  Not even a cupcake or chocolate from a friend.  Had to swipe my own pink M&Ms from the break room.  Didn’t even get the annual card from my mom with a few bucks in it.  There should be a Bah! Humbug phrase for this day.  I’ve never had anything good happen to me on Valentine’s Day.

I was supposed to go on a quasi-date tonight.  On Thursday, I had a coffee-date lined up with this guy I got to chatting with.  He hit me up on Grindr, an iPhone app that shows guys in your general proximity via GPS.  He’s a medical resident downtown.  Who can resist a doctor, right?  We did meet for coffee.  And it went well enough.  Possibly a spark or two.  He asked a number of questions about me.  Always a sign—when in a platonic meeting or otherwise—whether someone is genuinely interested in you or just looking for another pair of ears to listen to them.  After our Starbucks coffee—which he bought me, i.e., no money spent—we walked a bit before he hopped on the train to head home.  We said we’d meet up again.  I suggested that I follow up on it since he had slated us for that meeting.  So I asked when.  He suggested Sunday evening:  today.  I texted him yesterday to check-in.  He said we’re on, but he’d call or text to confirm.  Fine.  That’s responsible.  Well, this morning he texted to say he was running late—not sure how that mattered—and that he had to cancel.  Apologies.  Meet up again another day.  Blah, blah, blah.

Somebody needs to take out Cupid already.  He certainly takes too long to hook the right people up.  Extremely inefficient.  He would have been voted out of office, overthrown, deposed . . . what have you . . . long ago if he weren’t a god.

Ironically, the Doctor then texted me later that same day while I’m still at the contract attorney position, entrenched in an email embroglio with the Colleague about how much I’m owed.  He invited me to join him and a few friends on a weekend get-away in Vermont.  Five gay men—not sure if I’d make six—in a cabin.  Talk about your “bare”-skinned rug, eh?  Hehehehe.  Bombarding me with text messages, trying to digitally twist my arm.  For a moment I nearly caved.  I figured pay would come through on Thursday.  And how much could a cabin and transportation really cost me when split five or six ways?  I would have had to find a replacement for four shifts at the theatre that weekend.  And I would’ve missed out on a Saturday at the contract attorney position.  But out of all those guys, I’d have to find a cool friend or possibly a date.  And a gay getaway would be awesome; something I’ve never done.  For a moment—in that desperate drive for love and affection—I almost said yes.

Then, I didn’t.

First off, someone who’s “running late” early on a Sunday, on a holiday weekend no less, and can’t fit in a meeting sometime that day—yeah, not someone you should change plans for and jump through hoops to be with.  Second, I doubt I’d enjoy myself worrying the entire time about the money I’d spend . . . and be losing . . . just being there.  And if I didn’t, I’d surely make up for it once I returned.  Third, I’d be traveling with strangers: clearly a hit or miss.  Could be a horrible time or a wonderful time.  So . . . yeah, I passed on that offer.  Doesn’t mean I’m not willing to get to know the Doctor a bit more.  Could at least become a friend.  But Cupid missed the spot this time if he was aiming for my heart.  Hit my wallet instead . . . and that’s empty.

No significant change to numbers above.  Hopefully today’s Colleague conversations will be fruitful and soon change those numbers though.  I threw down the gauntlet and told the Colleague I’d take him to small claims court for the unpaid balance on the initial amount we agreed to.  He has ignored two emails I sent recently, but this one got his attention.  He called within ten minutes.  I didn’t answer.  Despite trying to get me on the telephone, I was successful in getting him to respond over email.  I want our conversations in writing.   His replies?  He’s hurt.  He’s disappointed.  He’s angry.  In short, he’s all emotional about it.

For now things are back at a standstill.  Overall though I did my best to calm his concerns and placate him a bit.  I apologized for him being upset.  I also apologized for hitting below the belt, so to speak.  He noted that I referenced the amount he’s supposed to receive from the client.  I apologized for that and said that in retrospect it is irrelevant to our discussion; I just referenced it out of frustration.  Ironically though in the same sentence where he called me on that, he also said he thought what he offered was fair since I was earning $34 an hour at my contract attorney job.  Huh?  If the amount he’s earning from his client is irrelevant to our discussion of how much I’m owed, then so too is the hourly wage I’m receiving from an attorney temporary staffing agency.  He didn’t hire me for document review.

I finally quoted him a number though: $3,500.  Our emails crossed—literally—and in his he said he’d cut me a check for $1,500 and we’d have no further contact.  I didn’t accept.  That’s the same amount he offered before.  I still haven’t reached out to bar council on this matter, but I at least put it out there as a concern of mine as to where this money is coming from an how it’s accounted for.  Frankly, making me wait until that large client pays him is hairy because it seems as if he’s taking payment from one client and paying me for work for two others.  But I did get clarification from him that the amount already paid was for work done for one company and one company only.  He’s been a little too loose in his language on that point previously, commenting that “he” already paid me X amount.  He hasn’t paid me anything from his pocket.  A company paid me.  The check came drawn on that company’s bank account.  I wanted to make sure that it was only for work done for that company.

I don’t get why he’s upset about this.  First, if you ignore someone, for three weeks, through two emails, and change the password on a website you both had used—if you do all that, you can’t expect someone NOT to refer to a lawsuit to get you to respond.  What other recourse would one have?  Second, it’s business.  It’s not always clean or easy.  I worked for him.  That’s not disputed.  How much he owes me is.  Fine.  Then we go back and forth over the amount.  That’s the negotiation process.  But he’s not being very business about this.  Instead references what he “feels” I’m owed.   Nothing spelled out about any proposed hourly rate.  No discussion of why my work product only warrants X amount.  And he never commented on the hours I turned in to him back in November.  It’s just like he wants me to go away.  Sorry, can’t do that.  Frankly, I’m pretty Vulcan on this point—to coin a (trekkian) phrase.  I don’t take it personally.  Not in the sense that it affects my appreciation for him as a person.  Sure, I wouldn’t work for him again.  Yet he comes across as if I’ve stabbed him in the back.  Maybe Cupid’s arrow broke off in his ass today and left him smarting.  Not sure.  But anger certainly won’t help resolve this, or any, situation.  Just muddies the waters.

Well . . . hope everyone else has had a happy Valentine’s Day.  Neither my past flops nor today’s shenanigans have soured me on the day entirely just yet.  One of these days Cupid will come through.

Written by Laid-off Lawyer

February 14, 2010 at 23:02

11 Responses

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  1. Good for you on adopting a business-like approach to your issue with your Colleague.


    February 15, 2010 at 08:39

  2. Good call – no need to go the weekend trip if the doctor cannot even meet up beforehand. No need to be that desperate for love!


    February 15, 2010 at 09:03

  3. Losing. LOSING! Not loosing.


    February 15, 2010 at 16:49

  4. Good move.

    You only met this guy once over coffee, and he wants to take you to a deserted cabin with a group of people you never even met?


    February 15, 2010 at 17:46

  5. Doctor LoveShack


    February 15, 2010 at 19:00

  6. Hehehe…Didn’t even see that “Shining” example until you put it that way.

    Laid-off Lawyer

    February 15, 2010 at 20:24

  7. Good catch. Fixed it already. Snuck right past me too.

    Laid-off Lawyer

    February 15, 2010 at 20:24

  8. So what happened with the doctor. Did he call back after you showed some self-respect and declined his desperate offer. Probably just wanted to cut out some organs for his hospital!! Just kidding….


    February 16, 2010 at 19:59

  9. Actually no. It’s been radio-silence since. But that was only . . . what? . . . two days ago? And he is going away this weekend. But I kept up my end of the bargain by following-up for a second meeting. He derailed it. It’s on him to circle back. And if not, oh well. I’ve decided that the single-most important criteria going-forward, dating-wise that is, is how “into you” the other person is. Guy who wrote “He’s Just Not That Into You” hit the nail on the head with that one. I want someone who’s fascinated by me. Needs to understand what makes me tick. Because I’ll be sure to do the same.

    So yeah . . . guess he’ll be the third wheel this weekend, or maybe fifth is more accurate. Either way, the one without. Hope that cabin is warm.

    Laid-off Lawyer

    February 16, 2010 at 22:47

  10. Good for you Laid Off. I am sure I am a lot older than you and trust me I was such a fool when I was younger. You are absolutely right – it is totally NOT worth it to run after someone. Life turns out just fine without them – it’s nice to have someone but, as I have realized, as I get older, definitely NOT worth losing your self-respect and dignity over. Men, women come and go – but if you keep degrading yourself you are always going to be left with that memory and self-hatred. Yes that guy who wrote “He’s Not that Into You” was totally right.


    February 17, 2010 at 18:06

  11. Update: I forgot to mention that I eventually did get a card from my mother. She wrote the address incorrectly and it was returned to her. She’s one special lady.

    Laid-off Lawyer

    March 17, 2010 at 22:11

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