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2007-06-15 - Friday

Just got back from Court -- my first ever motion hearing (I've been to court before for preliminary conferences and compliance conference but not for motion hearing).


What a madhouse that place is... not at all like on law and order. It's set up like a normal courtroom with the bench and the two tables and the jury box, but there are all these attorneys hashing out agreements in the gallery seating, and in the jury box, and at each of the two tables near the bench there are court legal secretaries doing compliance conferences with attorneys and up at the bench there are attorneys arguing before the judge, just standing there at the bench. And there's a back room where more attorneys are having more meetings about more cases. It is like a 12-ring circus. And with so many people the volume escalates so from time to time one of the courtroom cops says "Shhhh" really loudly, which doens't help at all.


Anyway, I was really prepared and FRW continues her Dr. Jekyll behavior towards me, so that is fine. It was fun, I felt like a lawyer.

2007-05-24 - 9:43 a.m.

Again, wasn't ridiculously productive at work despite that I'm working on a project I don't mind and actually know how to do. I did speak to my partner-mentor about the FRW situation -- initially the idea was not to go in there and talk about that, but he brought it up, asking how my relationship with her was going, since obviously he heard about the ski trip debacle and I'd told him that for a time all my cases were under her supervision, which is not a good thing for me career-wise, not to mention mentally. Anyway, it was a very positive conversation and I felt very heard and understood and I feel positive that a change will come of it. My partner mentor is a well-respected equity partner, so it is someone who has the clout to make a difference.

2007-05-23 - 9:41 a.m.

At work FRW was apparently in a bad mood, but she was pretty nice to me. Here is something interesting -- yesterday she came down hard on me for two small errors in a set of motion papers that I gave to her for her review. The mistakes were: a) wrong defendant named in one spot on notice of motion (b/c I'd duped/revised); and b) incorrectly placed apostrophe. Today I was writing an amended complaint out of a complaint that she had filed (not just written, but FILED, as in, this went before a JUDGE) and her complaint was a hot mess. Misspelled words, incorrect punctuation, gibberish sentences that made no sense. I actually laughed out loud. What a lame-o. I don't feel bad at all now. I just have to remember this next time she heats up with me. Just remember her FILED complaint covered with my red edits. Yeah, who's got a misplaced apostrophe now, bitch?


Also at work I went to get lunch with an SF associate who is in town. That was nice but I wonder why he had lunch with me. He's a big politician, gunning for partner this year. He should have had lunch with someone that mattered, someone that could help affect his partnership chances.


I spent most of the day working on stuff for FRW. I wasn't super-productive but I was chugging along, I guess. I was supposed to meet up with Jess after work for a drink, but she cancelled on me because she has too much work. Second night in a row that evening plans are pulled out from under me and I am left suddenly without a plan, with unstructured time. Again, a situation that would have thrown me not so long ago.

2007-05-22 - 9:40 a.m.

At work, FRW threw me for a loop by being impatient and mean about two mistakes in the work I'd done for her. It was hard to let it slip off me and to not take it personally. I actually could have taken a minute to write about it or to breathe or something. At least I got angry instead of weepy -- getting angry means I have a sense of being wronged, of injustice, and that means I don't think I deserve it, to a certain extent. Anyway, she was super nice to me later in the day, just underscoring the fact that she is bat-shit crazy and also probably that she realized she didn't have to be so mean. Although with FRW such logic is not always relevant.


I actually started off the day really exhausted and I wasn't sure why. It made me nervous because I was worried that if I was so tired starting out the day, I was really going to crash in the afternoon. I actually didn't, and I'm not sure why about that either. But I've decided that I have to leave the office to take a walk at least once during the work day, if not to run errands then to just maintain mental health.

2007-05-16 - 9:37 a.m.

Yesterday I was in the worst mood leaving work, so I decided to walk home. From 48th Street to the Financial District. I absolutely loved it, the entire walk. I just love this city sometimes. The night was the perfect temperature, with a great breeze -- people were out in droves even at 11pm, skateboarders in Union Square, people on dates sitting in outdoor cafes, people walking home. It was just glorious. I need to remember this -- how much it really makes me happy to listen to good music and to walk around this city and feel the life. I got home and went right to bed, knowing my work crankiness would only be solved by sleeping.


Today was a better day at work -- did some tasks for FRW this morning and she was nice to me all day so at least that makes things better. Got a motion out the door and some research memos done. Also I got tagged for two travel depositions -- one in Alabama and one in Chicago (and we all know I like to travel and I like to do depositions. So that was nice. I only have two things hanging over my head now that I feel like I'm super-tardy on: research for EGR and motion to substitute class representative for FAH. I'll get to those tomorrow and I'll feel better about that then.


Work productivity flagged in the afternoon as I got sidetracked planning for Lee-Ann's visit this weekend. She wanted to meet my friends here in NY. That means she isn't going to be self-sufficient like Lotta was, so I'm going to have to devote some real time to her, can't just let her stay in my apartment while I go off doing my own thing (work or personal). That's fine though, she's only here Thursday through Sunday, not a whole week like Lotta was.

2007-05-15 - 9:30 a.m.

OK, I am back to updating here.

Work sucks right now. I am afraid to get anything out the door because it might not be 100% perfect and I can't afford anything less than perfection. That is a shitty state to be in. This morning a memo I'd redone for DN came back and he was like "please really review this, the date hasn't been changed and it needs to be spell checked." When I reviewed it there was one spelling error in the 5 page memo and, yes, the date was off. So part of me was like, oh for fuck's sake. And the other part of me was like, holy crap. Nothing I ever do is good enough. So I did it again, and proof read and proof read and I was literally afraid to hit send because he might come right back to me with some other totally obvious error like, did you even look at this? Why I am so careless sometimes? I actually am a detail-oriented person, so the fact that I miss things all the time -- what is that?


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15:00
I am exhausted. Naptime. I am always hitting the wall around this time and I absolutely hate it. What should I do? take a walk? Maybe I will go get a pedicure and read some CMOs in a bit.


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17:00
Got pedicure and extra massage. Cost $50 (!!) but worth it I guess. I got half the CMOs read and feel good (except guilty that I was away from my desk for so long.


I am getting sick of feeling hated. I feel like everything I do I am going to be hated. I feel especial animosity from FES and FRW.


People I think feel positively towards me are: SED, GJ (associates NY); NPS, FAH, FBE (partners SF); AEL (used to be a partner here, ironically gave me shitty reviews last time, now has her own practice but works closely with us on Case 0).


I feel like I just want to have my door shut all the time because I don't want to see anyone. I just want to hide and do my work. I know that is wrong but I feel like every time someone walks past my office they are looking in, thinking my office is messy or I am not working or I am eating again or I am wearing the wrong thing, etc. I don't feel strong, I don't feel entitled, I don't feel empowered. I don't feel like it is OK for me to go outside to get lunch or to go read outside or to do anything really. I feel like I am only allowed to be chained to my desk now for several months. And even then people will just say "it's about time" instead of "wow she is doing a good job/working hard/etc."


Yuck.


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20:17


Still at work. Cleaned out my guilt-inducing "to read" pile by just chucking shit I would never read. The whole pile was just weighing me down. Now I am about to send FBE his research and then I think I will do some motions for FRW and FAH so I can send some things out and show that I am still here.


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21:46


About to go home. I think I will walk at least to Union Square. What will I do when I get home? Watch some TV? Go through my papers? Go to bed? I need to be at work early tomorrow. Maybe I will walk from home at 7:30 so I hit the USq Farmers Market at 8 and then take the subway from there. Tomorrow morning I will do FRW's motions and then I'll work on EGR's research and get that done. Then I'll start to feel like I have a handle on things. Fewer old things hanging over me. I'll stay at work until late tomorrow too. Face time is the only thing that is going to fix this reputation problem I have.

2005-09-30 - 10:40 a.m.

So I'm in the San Francisco office of my firm. I've actually never been to SF, so it is neat to finally get to see this famous city. It is beautiful. The weather is gorgeous, the views out over the water and the city are phenomenal from where I'm sitting. My window looks out on the Transamerica tower. This morning I walked to work from the top of Nob Hill, where my hotel is. God, what a downwards slope! Very difficult in high heels.

I am currently feeling a bit ill--too much eggs Benedict at breakfast, I think. Ugh. And I'm tired and a little bored.

Yesterday I got to the office early, so I could poke around before people got here. SF is the headquarters for my firm, and so a huge bustling place compared to the little New York branch of the firm that I work in. In NY we only have 17 attorneys; in SF there are 44. Plus lots and lots of staff and paralegals and LNCs and secretaries and all that. I walked around and poked my head into offices and read the awards plaques on the walls.

I guess one of the reasons I wanted to come out to SF early was to meet all these new people one at a time, rather than all at once at the retreat this weekend. The retreat is the real reason I am out here in SF. Starting tonight with a cocktail party, we'll spend the weekend eating and meeting, I imagine. Just the idea of meeting all these people for the first time at the cocktail party tonight was horrific; instead I thought I'd rather pick people off one by one at the office, introducing myself and then having a quiet safe place to retreat to in between introductions. I just am so bad at social stuff. Cocktail parties and small talk. Yuck.

The SF office is much bigger and much more political, as is to be expected, I guess. All the name partners are out here, and most of the equity partners. New York is like a little monarchy run by the Managing Partner, but SF is more feudalistic. I just don't know the politics here very well at all.

There is a partner, NPS, who has been helping me very much. I have worked with him since I started at the firm five months ago. He has a pretty mixed reputation--I guess he tends to stare at women's breasts, especially those of staff members. I haven't noticed this problem at all, but it might just be because I don't really have that big a chest, nor do I flaunt what I have in work settings. I am always wearing conservative necklines at work, so there's not really much to stare at. That said, LEK yesterday warned me not to align myself with NPS, because I guess some people really don't like him and some of that could rub off on me. ::Sigh:: I am so bad at this kind of thing.

LEK is another story all together. She's an associate in SF and I am working with her on the presentation for the retreat. I thought we clicked and could be friends--I felt like we were really getting along. But then last night we went out in SF to a wine bar with another (newer) associate, CEC, and I just felt upstaged. I felt like LEK and CEC sort of diverged into this conversation on politics and all of a sudden everything I said was really naive and stupid. Not that they had different politics from me, but that they were somehow better informed and were more astute about what politicians would make it past the presidential primaries and have a shot at the Oval Office next election. Then I mentioned a theory from "Freakonomics" and they both started lambasting the book, which made me feel like they were lambasting anyone who liked the book even partially, and therefore, me. And then I felt like everything I had to say was stupid, so I just shut up and they kept talking animatedly for like, half an hour, while I sat silently and stared at my plate.

I had been counting on LEK to be a sort of safe haven at the retreat this weekend, a friendly face that I could always go back to. But now I feel like maybe she doesn't like me as much as I thought, and CEC is more interesting. And I don't really have any friends at this firm anyway. AdP once asked me which associates I hang out with and I had to admit to her that I don't. In the NY office all the male associates are married with kids, and I haven't clicked with any of the female ones. I actively do not like CJE, who is probably the one I would most likely be friends with in NY. I am really starting to be afraid of this weekend, especially of tonight. The cocktail party. I don't even know if my dress is appropriate.

 

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