"The game" was a western-themed game that we played all the time. If one of us said, "let's get a game going", the others knew what she meant. We had cowboy hats, cap guns & holsters, vests, and in addition to our pocket knives, we made sharp "knives" by rubbing the sides of our popsicle sticks on the driveway till we had a sharp point. We built forts, we played in the woods and at the cranberry bog. We'd play all the roles, both bad guy and good guy....we adopted boys' names b/c girls were "too girly" in the old west. Di & I even went so far as to rub dirt on our faces to make a 5 o'clock shadow. I wore my long hair in braids. My parents' neighbor, Miss Taylor, was horrified the day she saw Di & I galloping across the front lawn as she drove by, shooting at her w/ our cap guns. We were 10. She was an ultra leftie, anti-gun, intellectual and she read my mom the riot act about letting us play with guns. Surprisingly, I didn't get in trouble. My mom told her we were just playing our western game, we were just kids and what's the big deal, they aren't real guns they're just toys. She just advised Di and I not to "pretend shoot" at anyone again. (Val - I know, you're as horrified as Miss Taylor....)
So here I sit, on July 31, dreading the long haul thru August till it's finally Labor Day weekend. At least this year we have our trip to the Bay Area to break up the month. Only 2 more weeks!!
Things Happen For A Reason
Although it's not always evident at the time. I have been lamenting the fact that I was unable to make my annual trip to Canada this year. I had planned on visiting Whistler, in the mountains, about a 2 hour drive north from Vancouver. I hadn't actually chosen dates to go, but it would have been either last week or this.
Yesterday, this happened on the Sea to Sky Highway between Vancouver & Whistler:
The road is going to be closed for at least 5 days. That means anyone who was already in Whistler is stuck there, unless they take an unbelievably long detour east to Lillooet, south to Hope, and then west to Vancouver. We're talking about a 6-7 hour trip, on winding, mountain roads w/ only one lane in each direction, traveling with trucks, RV's and everyone else who is now unable to access Whistler by way of Vancouver in either direction. I'm sure it's a very scenic route, but between the wear and tear on my car, and gas prices (which are over $5 in BC), it would have been a real pain in the ass.
Running on Empty
Steve nearly sent me home today around 12:45 or so. He's leaving in a couple of weeks for his annual trip to visit his family in Michigan. Between now and then, he has 2 trials, 4-5 Motions and at least 6 Show Cause hearings. So besides preparing for all of those Court appearances, we are also having to deal with other issues on other cases. Our copier is going nonstop all day long. Steve's trying to prepare and read case law for all of these upcoming things and won't take any calls, which means Debby and I are lying our asses off to everyone who calls by saying he's on the phone or with a client or at Court, and, as a result, we are taking a great deal of abuse. Most of the people who are the biggest offenders are those who have created HUGE problems on their own over the course of time, and call us 6x a day to bitch about it and demand that we do something NOW.
Last week I was at the end of my rope and I took down an uber snotty King County attorney on the phone. I didn't give a shit if he told Steve, b/c whenever something like that happens, I'm the first person to inform my superior of the situation. It hasn't happened much, but over the course of 18 years in this biz, it happens. For one thing, King County looks down on Pierce County like we are their white-trash, embarrassing, fat, stupid stepsibling. I can be sitting in traffic, looking at a blocking accident in front of the Tacoma Dome and the damn traffic reports only focus on precious "Seattle and the Eastside". Traffic's backed up 10 miles from fucking Fort Lewis north to the T-Dome and the only "south" report they do cuts off at I-5 in Federal Way and Hwy 167 in Auburn, coincedentally, right where the county line divides us.
Anyway, Steve had already had a verbal confrontation w/ King County Dickhead Lawyerman the week before and hung up on the guy, bellowing from his office, "FUCK YOU! FUCK THAT! I AM NOT TALKING TO HIM AGAIN! I AM SERIOUS. I WILL NOT TAKE HIS CALLS AGAIN. HE CAN JUST GO FUCK HIMSELF!" Then we were treated to a loud, but entertaining, re-enactment of the conversation, w/ all of the obscenities he'd wanted to use on the phone, but couldn't.
Well, before he hung up on him that day, Steve had told the guy we'd have our documents to him by a certain date, forgetting that it was when Debby was gone a couple of weeks ago. I just didn't have time to do it before the date that was promised. As soon as Deb got back, I started the copy job from hell. When all was said and done, over the course of 3 days, I probably used, easily, 6-7 reams of paper. At 500 pages to a ream. You do the math. So Snotty Snottington calls and unfortunately, I was the one who answered the call. I told him Steve was at Court. The guy blew, "WELL YOU BETTER TELL HIM THAT IF I DON'T HEAR FROM HIM IN 45 MINUTES I'M FILING A MOTION TO COMPEL!!!!!" I said, calmly, "I'm looking at the documents stacked on my desk right now....it's at least 6 inches high, we were short staffed last week, I was the only one here and Steve had a trial." He goes, still ultra belligerent, "He told me he'd have the documents to me by MONDAY!" I said, "I understand that but with his trial, I just didn't have a chance to copy these documents. There are thousands of pages of them. It takes time!"
Do you know what that fucker says to me? "How much 'time' can it take?! You just stand at the copy machine and make copies!" Excuse Me? What did you just say to me? Oh no he di'int!!! OK Asshole, that's it. I don't get paid enough to take this kind of abuse, you know? So I said with a whole lotta 'tude in my voice, "You know what? Why don't I just send this stack up to you the way it is? That'll save me so much time!.....Then YOU can sort through each one and YOU can figure out what document category they go in!"
Dead silence on the line. I wait. He stutters clearly taken aback, "Well...well... they are supposed to be sorted into the categories." I said, "Yes. I know that. And that is the way this firm does things. Now, if you want it done correctly, you will give me till Monday to complete the copying and organizing. But if you want them now, then you get them the way they are." Needless to say, I got my extension and Steve LOVED the way I handled it. He thought it was a hoot.
Which leads me to today.
The next call I get is from a long time client, who needs help "today!!!" On that message, also in red, I totaled up how much he and his deadbeat son owe us for PAST legal work ($1200 for him, $500 for his son) which have been on our books for at least 2 years. Where does this fucker get off demanding that we do something for him "today" when he HASN'T PAID HIS BILL?
When Steve got back and saw the messages w/ my editorial comments, he was howling w/ laughter. Then, at 11:30 when I'm supposed to be taking my lunch break, a luxury I have not fully enjoyed in nearly 2 years, he tells me that he's decided he wants to file a child support modification on this same case I'd just did that huge document production for and oh by the way can we to get it out w/ the 1:30 messenger? Now, Brian has always told me that I should never play poker b/c I'm such an easy read. I must've given Steve quite the withering look b/c he starts laughing and says, "Uh oh, you're gonna give me the finger aren't you!" I went back to my office to draft the papers. I start working on the forms and all of a sudden, I am nauseous, sweating, my mouth is completely dry and I'm dizzy. Here we go. I'm going to pass out again. Marvy. I willed myself to stay conscious, turned on my fan and got back to work.
When everything was in final and I was making the copies to send out, Steve, became very serious, & said, "Are you OK? Because you look sick." I said, "Is it that obvious that I'm thisclose to passing out?" and he goes, "yes, it is. if you need to go, you should go. Did you eat?" I shook my head. He goes, "Oh man! C'mon Jo, you can't DO this! You have to take lunch!" I said, "It's fine, I'll eat later. Right now I'm too nauseous to eat anyway." But I knew that if I take off mid day, I've fucked him over royally. Work that could be getting done.....that NEEDS to be done....will have to wait because I had to go home, and quite frankly, it can't wait. I told him I would stick it out till he left for an appt. at 3 and he said that was fine. He knows that if one of his staff becomes wounded, he's screwed. So I left at 3:15. You guys know how much I love my boss, but I'll be really glad when he goes on vacation b/c at least we'll have a small respite from the nonstop shit storm that is my office.
So onward we plod. Only one more month before blessed fall and the best time of the year arrives.
The 2nd annual Julie & JoJo Go to Portland Trip
I'm pleased to report that Julie and I have selected dates for our second annual trip to Portland, Oregon, in September. The two things we know for certain are that we are going to check out Multnomah Falls and we aren't staying in the same hotel we stayed in last year. I can't remember the name of it....we just call it The Hotel Sordid. Further updates as events warrant.
And Finally: Stupid Boys and Their Stupid Boy Penises
Sticker seen on an SUV in Sumner yesterday: "Boobies make me smile." Give me a break. Get a life, boys. They're breasts. Calm down. So as I passed him, I looked over with the biggest most malevolent sneer I could muster, and mouthed "LOSER" at him. Since he flipped me off, I assume he knew exactly what I was referring to. I enthusiastically returned the bird.
I get home and recount my story to Brian. After I tell him about the sticker but before telling him what I did, he eagerly jumps in with, "So when you passed him, did you flash him your tits?" Sigh.