Try to listen twice as much as you speak, because when you are new you don’t have a clue. Listen to what people say and notice what they don’t say. Often their body language will verify or betray their words. Ask questions to clarify, distinguish, expose and summarize. Judge J. Layne Smith of Leon County, … Continue reading The Wisdom of Judge Smith
While attempting—as an adult—to learn how to swim properly, the experience gave me a whole new appreciation for what 1L legal writing students go through. The idea of adults trying new things in middle age is a whole genre, found in a variety of essays and books, e.g. What I learned as the worst student … Continue reading A digression: re-learning to swim
In-house lawyer @J_Dot_J has described it most directly: Client: You probably have the coolest job. Yes. I stay awake at night, crippled with anxiety and my mind racing, so you don't have to. — JJ Lang Syne (@J_Dot_J) November 4, 2017 A law student once shared a related concept to describe his coping mechanism, especially … Continue reading Lawyer as anxiety filter?
Last week’s allegations of sexual harassment against Judge Alex Kozinski brought a response by the judge: “I treat all of my employees as family and work very closely with most of them.” Invoking the family is not an entirely warm-and-fuzzy metaphor, as several have pointed out (hat tip to @gokpkd for pointing out this thread): … Continue reading Listening in the Family
They had me at “hello.” Actually they had me with the title of the handout: “Mindfulness without Meditation.” Last week I attended the 2017 meeting of the Southeastern Association of Law Schools, a.k.a. SEALS, in beautiful Boca Raton. The SEALS meeting lasted all week but included a two-day Conference on Mindfulness in Law co-sponsored by … Continue reading Mindfulness without meditation
You may know this blog is a huge fan of the #PracticeTuesday hashtag. I covered it here and follow it every Tuesday at 5 p.m. Eastern on Twitter. The conversation ranges from reminders about handling witnesses . . . Concur. Know what you need to get out of each witness and check it off as … Continue reading Welcome, #PracticeTuesday Blog
Before a math test, women test-takers reminded of their gender did worse on the test than a control group who took the same test without the reminder. This experiment forms a classic example of stereotype threat, which Professor Susie Salmon from Arizona Law spoke about at the recent Moot Court Advisors’ Conference held by the … Continue reading Stereotype threat
Some clients are heroes—or plausibly can be portrayed as heroes in legal briefs. The lawyers remain in the background, telling the story without inserting themselves into it. Another type of legal writing I study and teach is legal blogging. What I’ve noticed in reading lots and lots of legal blogs is that some lawyers portray themselves … Continue reading Lawyers as heroes