Another anonymous lawyer blogger who claims to be the “hiring partner at a large firm in a major city,” at the aptly titled Anonymous Lawyer. I know he/she is truly a large firm lawyer because you just can’t make this stuff up:
I hate Fridays. Everyone else in the world loves Fridays because it means the weekend is here. I hate Fridays because it means another weekend when I should be home but instead I’ll either be at work, thinking about work, or wondering if I should be at work. Saturday at least. Sunday I don’t work. Well, 80% of the time. Sunday is help my family spend my paycheck day. Anyone want a pony?
A kid that I interviewed this past fall — I can’t remember exactly which one — commented on all the stacks of paper in everyone’s office. It was just idle small-talk, it wasn’t like he asked a question about the paper, or made a big deal of it. He said he’d have thought so much more would be electronic. And a lot of what we do is electronic — I certainly don’t print out every e-mail I get — but you can’t mark up a document on the computer, you can’t carry it down the hall and wave it in someone’s face and ask them what they were thinking when they left out the comma on page 17. I never thought about it before, but I can’t imagine ever getting to a point where there wasn’t all this paper. You just can’t walk into an associate’s office, slam your laptop on his desk, and scroll down to the place where he made a mistake. You need to have that brief printed out, you need to be able to tear those pages right in front of eyes, to scatter them wildly across the room, to fill the sheet with red lines and crosses and corrections, to crumple those papers up, toss them in the trash can, light them on fire, and watch them burn. Sure, we could probably afford to destroy a couple dozen laptops a day just to make a point that we demand perfection — but paper just works so much better for that.
Someone, and I think I know who, keeps “borrowing” my stapler and never returning it. So I have to get my assistant just to come in here and staple some papers for me. Or if it’s 7:30 in the morning, and my assistant isn’t here yet, I have to go wandering the halls looking for someone else’s stapler, so I can steal it, and bring it back to my desk. I shouldn’t have to go combing the halls for a stapler. I’m a hiring partner. Staplers should be lining up at my door, begging for me to use them. Like summer associates. The hiring process is very rewarding, but having thirty insufferable law students here for 10 weeks every summer is a real chore. None of them know how to do anything, but they don’t realize it and just end up making everyone else’s lives more difficult. There are two types of summer associates that bother me the most. The first are the ones who half-ass everything and turn in memos that my five-year-old niece could write. The second are the ones who are hell-bent on finding a “mentor” and follow me around all day. “Can I look over your shoulder while you read a three-hundred-page contract?” No! If I like the work you’re doing, I’ll come find you and take you to lunch and, if you’re lucky, make you feel like you actually belong. But if you make yourself my shadow, the only thing you’re doing is making me wish we never gave you an offer. Those stakes really aren’t high enough. We need to fire more summer associates. That would make the summer fun again. I need a stapler.