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O Hai! Amember me? - Blather. Rants. Repeat.
A Møøse once bit my sister ...
O Hai! Amember me?

Okay, I haven't been away as long as this guy was-

- but it must seem that way.  I even got a distressed voicemail from my sister this morning wondering where I'd gone.

Noplace, really. Just been busy. And still sick. And, of course, depressed about He Who Must Not Be Named Inaugurated.

Going over those in order:

The workweek wasn't that bad. Three court appearances, Monday/Tuesday/Thursday, which is maybe a smidge above average.  Yet each of them was more interesting than the run of the mill ones.

First was a routine civil motion, but which got stuck behind an almost hour-long criminal docket in Buffalo City Court.  While I'd never touch one of these cases, I got quite an education in how to succeed in criminal court, or, more to the point, how to fail:

  • - Don't put your entire life on your cell phone, because when you get arrested and the jail confiscates your cell phone, you're not going to have any contact information in your brain to tell the judge and you're going back to the jail.  Especially if you're a Vietnamese immigrant residing in Iowa, speak no English and thus can't give the judge (or even your interpreter) the name of any contact within this area code who possibly could bail you out.

  • - And if you're the next defendant called after that poor guy, and you've just been arrested for three violent felonies, it doesn't matter how nicely you dressed up, how many of your family show up, or how high- powered a lawyer you have with you. If you also have no fixed local address and you tell the judge you now live in North Carolina, you're going to have to make bail too, and they will pop the handcuffs on you while you stand just to make the point.

  • - For gods' sake, show up for your court date or there will be an arrest warrant out for you:

     Defense lawyer: Sorry, your honor, I have no idea of my client's whereabouts.
     Judge (handing the freshly-signed bench warrant to the deputy): Don't worry about it, counselor. We'll tell you where she is.

  • - When you're about to take a favorable guilty plea, and the judge asks you to tell him in your own words what happened, do not testify to the police conducting an illegal search of your car. It tends to mess things up. You will, however, probably get sentenced to just time served.

  • - And finally, when you hire the most high–power defense lawyer in town, who gets you a very good plea to disorderly conduct, don't show up for court high.  It ain't going down.  And please don't get in a fight with your family about showing up high in the corridor; it bothers the deputies and, hell bro, you're lucky he still let you out on bail.

The next day was a court conference in Rochester.  My co-worker there actually accompanied me. In a tie. Smelling salts were administered all around.  It wound up being a relatively civil and productive session, but there are a lot of emotions between the parties and some of them spilled out during, and more in the day or so after, we were there.

Finally, Thursday was another routine civil motion, this time in Rochester City Court. No criminal cases here, but there was a criminal case which delayed things.  This court has been a judge short for months, requiring them to import judges from neighboring towns and villages to handle things day to day.

Death? Illness? Or just plain stupidity?  The latter, and plenty of it:  the newest member of that bench was busted for DWI back in February; she refused a breathalyzer, hired the highest-power DWI lawyer in town, and eventually was tried in a neighboring city for the offense and was found guilty in a bench trial.  Then, this past week, word came out that she had violated her sentence by drinking- an interlock device on her car caught her, and she allegedly had her underage kid blow into the device to get it started.  Then when the sentencing judge extended her term for the violation, she admitted that she'd never read the terms and conditions of the sentence. She was too upset about having been convicted.

And yes, she's still on the state payroll, stuck in the back hallway doing "chambers work." She is also subject to removal by a state judicial conduct committee, which in over a dozen drunk-driving cases has only voted to remove one state judge- and he got that overturned by a higher court.

But I won my motion.


Also contributing to the basket of busy? Since the day after the election, inquiries about bankruptcy cases have gone through the roof.  Two that day, another first appointment the following day (that one was booked right before the election), three more calls from a referral source last week (of whom I've already met with two), a finally-gonna-do-it call from a guy I first talked to about it last year, and at least one new client wanting a second opinion about how her case is being handled.

This part of my practice has always been cyclical- I filed (or assisted my coworker in filing) 18 cases in the first six months of this year, and only one since.  But there are several backlogged where clients started paperwork, and I could match that 18 total if all of them, and all of these new ones, come to pass.


So that-all's the busy. (Plus way more real-estating than I ever said I'd let myself do anymore, plus an urgent referral from a friend which I wrapped up late Friday, plus some bankruptcy creditor work, and so and so and so and so and so and so and so.)

The Cough Cou-ntinues. Two doctors, several medications, lots of hydration- nothin' has kicked it. It seems better at times, and at least it doesn't seem to be keeping me awake, but when it's bad, it scares anyone within 100 feet of me.

As for the depressed, well, read the news- and the predictions of news.  I still am not up to a full analysis of what went wrong or what could be done to minimize the damage from the upcoming four years of hell. I just know that there is still a majority of Americans who are kind, and decent, and will hopefully find ways to resist the worst of what's coming- whether that is by using the Senate, or the courts, or just the power of public opinion.  Drumpf is such a narcissist, I cling to the belief that he will try to please as many people as possible so that they will still like him.

Instead, I just try to find as much humor in as many situations as I can- including last night, when his heir apparent Mike Pence showed up at a Hamilton performance.

First, he got roundly booed. (The house told the audience to stop.)

Then, the audience roared at some of the worst-for-Pence lines in the whole performance, including King George singing "when people say they hate you” and “do you know how hard it is to lead?" and, of course, “immigrants we get the job done.”

The cast then addressed their special guest at the end:

We, sir, we are the diverse America, who are alarmed and anxious that your new administration will not protect us, our planet, our children, our parents or defend us and uphold our inalienable rights. But we truly hope that this show has inspired you to uphold our American values and to work on behalf of all of us.

El Caudillo de Mar-a-Lago
got on the Twitter after hearing about that, and demanded an apology:

Our wonderful future V.P. Mike Pence was harassed last night at the theater by the cast of Hamilton, cameras blazing.This should not happen! ...    The Theater must always be a safe and special place.The cast of Hamilton was very rude last night to a very good man, Mike Pence. Apologize!

Huh. And I thought "safe spaces" were for pussies.

But the best was yet to come.  Ever since, wags have been tweeting the names of even more musicals that can be corrupted by our new Dear Leaders:

    Bigot and the Beast  

    Annie Get Your IUD (before Jan 20)

    Annie Get Your Gun Without A Background Check

    Little Shop That Won’t Sell To LGBT People Because They Think It Violates Their Misguided Religious Beliefs

    How To Succeed In Winning An Election Without Having A Majority Of The Votes

    Kiss Me, Straight

Joseph Isn’t Allowed To Wear His Technicolor Dreamcoat In Public Anymore

    Deport Miss Saigon

Don’t Dream, Girls

    Les Deplorables

    The Lyin’ King

    An American In Paris Cause He Needed Healthcare

    The Grand Wizard of Oz

    Willy Wonka and the White Chocolate Factory That’s In China

There are more, but this one's my favourite:

So I'm back.  Hopefully in 2021, we'll all still be here.

ETA. Finally came up with a few entries of mine own:

Grab Them By The Cats

I Hate Islamalot

Orange Hairspray

La Cage Aux Mexicans

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