DC Intern Diaries

I'm a female 24 year old DC permanent intern. You name it and I've probably interned it. I'm also a graduate student in DC.

Tuesday, November 02, 2004

Funny: BigLaw Firm Life

"As an newly minted JD you will be tempted to join a biglaw paying $125,000 with a with a starting bonus, consisting of ten to thirty thousand in cash. As a first and second year associate you will need to work long hours to make your billing goal because the firm is writing off so much of your time as "training". No one will ever look at your work product or give you feedback, although the bills to the client will reflect significant training time.

In your third and fourth years the partnership will remind you that they wrote off a boatload of your time in the first and second years, so you will need to work long hours to repay them for their investment in training you. If you fail to make your billable goal, then they will fire you. If you make the billable goal, then they will not harp on you. If you exceed your billable goal, then they may elect to pay you a bonus. If you significantly exceed your billable goal, then they may offer you a concubine. However to save money, firms only offer mid-level associates concubines of the same gender. Therefore, you have to be gay or bisexual to accept this benefit, or arrange for a swap with an associate of the opposite gender.

In your fifth and sixth years the partnership will remind you that you are entering the partnership window, so you will need to work long hours to demonstrate that you are partnership material. If you fail to make your billable goal, then they will fire you. If you make the billable goal, then they will not harp on you. If you exceed your billable goal, then they may elect to pay you a bonus. If you significantly exceed your billable goal, then they may permit you to swap your same-gender concubine for one of the opposite sex. Also, if you are a stellar performer, then the firm may help pay for your divorce.

In your seventh and eighth years you will either make partner or be fired. The partnership decision will be based on important criteria like, for example, are you a white male who belongs to the appropriate golf and tennis clubs and lives in an appropriate section of the city. Also, make sure you are fat and out-of-shape when you come up for partnership. If you are thin and in-shape, the partnership will assume that you have not been working enough, and they will reject you. This is critical, because the partners are too lazy to bother checking your hours. Nor will they check your work product if you have been with the firm for a long time, because it might expose the fact that they failed to train you.

If you make partner, then the firm exchanges your concubine for a trophy wife. She will be ten to fifteen years younger than you with beautiful hair and nails, and large, perfectly formed breasts. You will never know whether they are real. She will love diamonds, BMWs, and professes to love fat, middle-aged attorneys. She plays a killer game of both golf and tennis, and looks great in a swimsuit. She was a tri-delt in college, and majored in art history. You will get to learn about art. Unbeknownst to you as a junior partner, the firm pays for her to maintain a lover, who poses as your gardener. The firm exchanges your 1994 Honda Accord for a new BMW 5 series. Your trophy wife gets a Land Rover to take her across the rugged terrain of the city streets to wilds of the country club.

After about ten years in the partnership you will discover the secret account the firm uses to pay for your wife’s lover. By this time you are so invested in the firm, so fat and gross, and so estranged from your wife and family that you no longer care. If you have sufficiently high originations, the firm will open the secret account to pay for your mistress, who will be fifteen to twenty-five years younger than you. She will energize you to lose weight, buy a hairpiece, and get a convertible, or even a Harley, which you will ride exactly twice. You will carry on this affair for two to three years, then she will dump you. You will gain forty pounds and start drinking Vodka at the office.

You are now nearing retirement. You are eighty pounds overweight with a fifty-two inch waist. You are trapped in a sham marriage with a forty-something year old wife who still looks great in a swimsuit and would not let you touch her with a ten-foot pole. She is entitled to half your assets and she knows it, so she has got you by the nads. You no longer care that you see the same gardener pull in every day in your rearview mirror of your BMW 7 series as you leave for work. And who the hell are these teenagers around your house anyway? And why do they despise you? And why do you have to pay for their college when they look just like the damned gardener? And why is your face always as red as a fire engine?

This is about when you receive the group email from the firm announcing that you have informed the executive committee of your decision to retire at the end of the year. You go to the managing partner to ask what the hell is up with this, and before you can say anything he jumps up, shakes your hand and tells you how much you have contributed to the firm. They hate to see you leave, but they understand that its time for you to enjoy your life a little. The place just will not be the same without you. Blah, blah, blah. They agree to keep you on as counsel for another year in a small satellite office out in the suburbs to avoid a lawsuit. You are fifty-five years old.

Then you are done. You waddle your fat ass around your house for another two or three years until you die in your sleep of a heart attack from being so fat or from cancer from smoking. As your life passes before your eyes while you draw your last breath, you ask yourself what made your life worth living? Fortunately you expire before you realize the question was rhetorical. They have to bury you in a piano crate."

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