Confessions of a Laid-off Lawyer

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

Scrabbling Along

with 2 comments

Total Black: $682.66
Total Red: $237,096.81

Today is the first Sunday since Easter, back on April 4th, when I did not work at the theatre job.  Reading over my post that day, Done Stepping Down, looks like I may have not worked that Sunday because Easter fell during my experiment with scaling my hours at the theatre back, expecting I’d work longer at the contract attorney position.  That didn’t work.  Or, it’s also possible that I just was given a day off.  I can’t recall now.  But that makes eight weekends straight when I worked at the theatre.  Two months without a weekend day where I did not work.  And today is only different because I gave away the shifts I had been assigned.  I had thought that maybe I’d use today to haul my belongings back to my mother’s house in Pennsylvania. 

See, today is my birthday.  Happy Birthday to me, eh?  Big deal.  Yeah . . . see . . . I thought perhaps I’d kill two birds with one stone: make my way back to Pennsylvania in a U-Haul and also spend today with family.  Mice and men, huh?  Mice and men.  That plan failed for two reasons.  First, when have I had the time to pack?  A quick glance over the prior posts of the past week or so reveals insane hours at both jobs.  I think I’ve packed about ten boxes so far.  The second reason that plan failed is because I assumed I’d be able to take a day off from the contract attorney position.  No.  That wasn’t possible.

One thing that I’ve come to learn in this contract attorney position is that people will use you as much as they can unless you put on the brakes.  I left work last night at 4:30am—as noted in Once Around the Sun.  The emails resumed this morning at 10am.  And, of course, good little boy that I am, I replied around 10:30am, probably when I first noticed.  The sender didn’t know that I had left at 4:30am, so I don’t fault the person for an early Sunday am email.  Instead my point is that by replying, I opened the door.  And then the floodwaters came busting through.  When I replied that I’d be in later today, another came back twenty minutes later asking whether I had completed a task and was I planning to arrive at 1pm.  In replying once more—from bed via the iPhone— I mentioned that I had left at 4am and forwarded along one portion of the task requested, hoping that would placate the sender.  The other contract attorney and I had been told Sunday evening for completion of this task.  This same task we’ve completed one hundred and sixty-seven times already.  I had hoped my email would put the sender off for a bit, thinking perhaps “Oh, he’s only gotten roughly five hours of sleep.  Let me stop emailing for now.”  But then I realized I didn’t answer the question of when I’d be in, so I replied to my own email to say that I’d be in after 1pm.  This was around 11:30am by now.  Five minutes later came back a typical lawyerly reply to my lawyerly answer.  I said I’d be in “after 1pm”—intentionally open-ended.  The sender’s reply asked for an approximate time in order to plan the day.  So yes, after all that back and forth, who could sleep?  I got my ass out of bed after roughly five hours of sleep and walked over to the contract attorney position for approximately 1:30pm.

And once more I redid the same task as in in Once Around the Sun and Over and Over and Over Again and Runnin’ Me Ragged.  How many times can you do the same thing?  I certainly know what Sisyphus felt like.  What time did I leave work today?  Today was an early night.  I left at 2:30am.

But all joking (and whining) aside, I’m happy to have the work.  I noted back in Signed, Sealed, and Delivered that I’ve already sent off three checks for $900 for the new apartment.  I didn’t note, however, that that covered first month, second month, and security deposit.  So rent is paid in St. Croix until August 1, 2010.  Just gotta get there already.  Tired of this hard-scrabble life.

Written by Laid-off Lawyer

May 23, 2010 at 23:56

2 Responses

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  1. Now that things have pretty much wound down, upon reflection, I think that this blog may have been the work of an older (50+)partner at BigLaw LLP (no names please).

    This particular partner, although mostly silent and apparently “gung-ho” on the matter, regrets the commodification of legal practice, and he has himself laid off one too many associates to maintain his own mental health.

    He profoundly sympathizes with current JD graduates who leave school deeply in debt. He knows that many of them cannot even land interviews as document review attorneys.

    Additionally, he wrestles with his sexuality and fantasizes about being 20 years younger and on his own in the big city.

    Don’t ask me why I think this, but see also:


    May 24, 2010 at 13:41

  2. Interesting. But no. Further enlightenment must be sought. Don’t stop your seeking.

    Laid-off Lawyer

    May 26, 2010 at 09:25

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