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What Would People Think?

Saturday, April 19, 2008

Things I Learned In My First Trial

Okay, you impatient readers named Mike. Generally speaking, the trial went well. I'm willing to talk about the trial over the phone (although not the name of the company), but, as I said before, not on the Internet. You never know who's watching. I've been Google-stalked by opposing counsel before.

So, in lieu of an actual description of the trial, I offer the following lessons learned from the trial.

(1) A sarcastic judge is awesome, unless his sarcasm is employed in ruling against you.

(2) Twelve-and-a-half solid hours of lawyering with nothing but a half-hour lunch break leads to nausea, headaches, a pounding heart, and bizarre leg cramps. Proof positive that the law should only be taken in small doses.

(3) It helps to actually know the law which is the basis for your trial.

(4) Do not, under any circumstances, either insult the judge or imply the judge lacks integrity. We will call this the Blindingly Obvious Rule of Legal Practice.

(5) One of the best ways to learn how to be a lawyer is to watch a more experienced - and incredibly awesome - lawyer in action.

(6) No matter how much you practice, no matter how methodically you plan - and, trust me, I'm methodical - you cannot predict everything that will happen at trial and you cannot have a contingency plan for everything. You need to think on your feet. I need to work on that one.

(7) As in everything, the answer you get depends a lot on how you ask.

(8) Shaking your head and making a disgusted, skeptical noise while the other guy's witness is testifying does not constitute an argument. Nor is it evidence.

And if you're living in suspense as to whether I won the trial, you'll have to continue living in suspense with me. I still have to write a post-trial brief. We're talking months here. So hold your horses, gentle readers.

And if you, dear reader, are opposing counsel in any of my cases, please find better things to do with your time.


  • You need to think on your feet.


    I've never had to lawyer for nearly as long a stretch as you obviously did. I can't even begin to fathom how tough that would be. Congrats on getting one under your belt.

    By Blogger Matthew B. Novak, at 4/20/2008 11:35 PM  

  • All I really wanted was a "well", "poorly", or "meh". I wouldn't expect you to discuss any specific aspect of anything professional on your blog (note my similar reticence). Anyway, I'm glad that of the three options, "well" was the one chosen.

    By Blogger Mike, at 4/21/2008 11:19 AM  

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