You really thought a blog with the words "General Scumbaggery" was going to be updated regularly? Come on….The truth is, the lack of updates have been due to four main reasons.  First, my first trial which will be detailed below.  Second, my adoption of a homeless mutt.  Third, my two gambling trips to Choctaw Nation and New Orleans.  And, finally, my laziness. 

Since last entry, I have experienced my first trial.  It was everything I thought it could be.  The subject matter was interesting, the jury was riveted to their seats, and the banter between Plaintiff and Defense counsel was better than anything written on Law and Order.  Well, almost.

I guess it wasn't that interesting.  It was a nine-year old Worker's Compensation case.  With about eighty medical exhibits to pore over individually.  Oh, and there was no jury.  Worker's Comp is always tried by the judge.  Also, not really a lot of back-and-forth between our side and opposing counsel.  None, actually.

The high point of the trial was our client breaking down in tears on the stand after being humiliated by the defense.  The courtroom quieted down while she composed herself and gathered some Kleenex.  A very silent, tense moment.  Until my cell phone rang.  Judges don't generally appreciate phones ringing in the middle of the testimony of a witness.  Especially when the ring tone is I'm In Love with a Stripper.  May have cost us the trial on that one.  May have cost me the job on that one.

Second only to Mike Jones interrupting our client, the other high point was the defense capturing our client on video doing things someone with a legitimate back problem could never do.  I think we could have overcome the footage of her grocery shopping.  Probably could have explained away the gardening.  But, in retrospect, the shots of her playing tennis like a pre-stab wound Monica Seles was pretty much a case-killer.  Although unorthodox, the Judge stopped the trial to ask explanation from myself and co-counsel on the physical activities of our client.  Since the other lawyer with me refused to look up from the Plaintiff's table, I did the best I could.

"Your Honor," I began, "My client is clearly uncomfortable in this 'so-called' tennis footage.  Her serve is weaker than it should be.  She under-extends on her forehand, which is taking away velocity.  And, in one frame, she is clearly in extraordinary pain when hitting the two-handed backhand.  I think this footage, if in anyway relevant, only shows how uncomfortable our client is when performing day-to-day activities.  Thank you."

(Sitting down, whispering to my client) "I think you can take off the neckbrace,now."

The judge then ruled from the bench (which is rare in workers compensation), awarding our client nothing.  This was terrible for two reasons.  First, we put in a lot of work on the case.  Coming in early, leaving late, and even working weekends.  It sucks putting in a lot of effort and getting nothing in return.  Since Law Firm bills on a contingency contract, we got 33% of nothing.  Which doesn't cover expenses.  Second, and more importantly, I was trying to date and eventually bang the client's daughter.  She was just a freshman in college, and kind of looked up to me in that vulnerable, inexperienced, way.  And I was going to use that vulnerability to have sex with her somewhere uncomfortable. 

Unfortunately, my fantasy never came to fruition. Because she and mother were sobbing after the Judge delivered a defense verdict filled with words like "fraudulent" and "disgrace," it was tough to ask her if she wanted to go to Chili's for some Jalepeno Poppers, or if maybe she wanted to catch a movie sometime.  Can't win 'em all, I guess. 

I'm sure I'll have many more chances to bend the professional rules of ethics involving illicit relationships with clients and/or their immediate family.  But you always remember your first……