Are You Kidding Me? (A Humorous Look at the Law)
Article Date: Monday, April 09, 2012
Written By: R. Lee Robertson Jr.
I graduate in (as of the day I’m writing this) 63 days. As it turns out, I graduate on May 13, which is also my birthday. (This is convenient for you, as you only need to buy me one present. Thanks to the stress of law school—and a lot of swimming—I wear large shirts and have a 34” waist. I like anything they sell at Brooks Brothers.) As I get closer to graduation, I’ve started to think seriously about getting a job. I wasn’t that concerned about this when school first began, because really, who wouldn’t want to hire me? But as it turns out, I am actually going to have to work to find a job. (It’s actually as difficult as finding a date—or at least a second date). This was surprising for several reasons, but mainly because the legal field is wide open right now, and there aren’t enough lawyers to go around (which is why we need law schools to graduate more students).
Anyway, as I’ve said before, I’ll practice any kind of law. (Read: if you’re willing to hire me, Employer, I’ll do whatever you tell me to. Really. Whatever you need, I’ll do it. Need the trash emptied? Done. Need your suits taken to the dry cleaners? I’m your man. Need coffee made? One sugar or two? Need a babysitter for your kids? Well…I can call my mom.) Now, I thought at first this was a great philosophy. After all, who doesn’t want an employee who’s willing to do whatever needs doing? It shows I’m flexible, right? And that I’m not above getting my hands dirty. Well, I was having lunch with the managing partner of one of Charlotte’s biggest (or at least most well-known) firm the other day. When he asked what kind of law I wanted to practice, I explained this to him, and then looked at him, waiting for him to say, “Oh that’s great! When can you start?” But instead, he looked at me funny and replied, “Well, at our firm, we look for people who have a passion for practicing what we practice.” Oh. Awesome. Open mouth; insert foot. Cross that one off my list. I didn’t want to work for his big firm anyway. In their skyscraper. With a great city view. Jobs like those are a dime a dozen, anyway.
But I’ll do more than practice law. I’ll also teach it (I was, after all, a high school teacher for a year. One year. One very long and very scary year.). So I’ve been looking around at different teaching jobs. Just about every college in this state is hiring professors of political science. And at last count, FIVE of these schools are hiring professors to instruct classes in various types of law. There’s one job posting, for example, that’s seeking a professor of “Administrative and Environmental Law.” “Why, this is perfect!” I thought to myself. “After all, I’ve been a teacher, AND in LAW SCHOOL I’ve had classes in both administrative law AND environmental law.” So I eagerly started filling out the application…
Oh—but hold up…guess what? The application says “A JD is NOT sufficient for this position.” Like, what? I re-read the posting, and sure enough, it’s a job to teach NOTHING BUT administrative and environmental law to college kids (which, let’s be honest, at this particular school are probably on par with most high school juniors). In LAW SCHOOL, I took those courses, taught by LAWYERS. But for reason, a college doesn’t think that a LAWYER is equipped to handle it? Evidently not, as they want someone who has a PhD in Political Science. Okay, really? You know what a lawyer can do, college? A lawyer can actually PRACTICE administrative and environmental LAW. You know what a Political Science PhD can do? Talk about it.
I guess it’s true what they say: those who can’t do, teach. At least law courses. At one college in North Carolina. And I still need a job. So if you’re hiring, give me a call. Don’t Google me. Or run a background check. Just call me. I’m your man. •
Lee Robertson is a law student living in Charlotte and is actively seeking gainful employment. In his free time, he writes funny stories on a blog.
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