It's made-for-cable holiday movie season, so we tackle the burning question.
Joe Patrice is an Editor at Above the Law. For over a decade, he practiced as a...
Kathryn Rubino is a member of the editorial staff at Above the Law. She has a degree...
Joe and Kathryn discuss the 2020 slate of new holiday movies that seem to always put lawyers on the wrong end of work-life balance. We also check in on Naomi Biden’s move to D.C. Biglaw and an attorney who apparently decided that Zoom trials meant the end of dress codes.
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Thinking Like a Lawyer – Above the Law
I Wonder If The Big City Lawyer Will Choose Love Or Career?!?!?
Joe Patrice: Hello and welcome to another edition of Thinking Like a Lawyer. I’m Joe Patrice from Above The Law. I’m joined by my co-editor, Kathryn Rubino.
Kathryn Rubino: Hi, there, Joe Patrice.
Joe Patrice: Hello, hello. We talk a lot on this show.
Kathryn Rubino: That is literally the only thing we do is talk.
Joe Patrice: That’s probably fair.
Kathryn Rubino: I mean it’s not just us, it’s the entire podcast genre.
Joe Patrice: Yeah, I guess that’s true.
Kathryn Rubino: It’s a talky genre.
Joe Patrice: But I feel like we should off the top offer I guess a weird form of quasi-apology.
Kathryn Rubino: Why apologize for nothing?
Joe Patrice: It’s fair. And I’m not altogether sure.
Kathryn Rubino: I don’t even know what we’re apologizing for here.
Joe Patrice: I’m not even that sure we should apologize for this but we did spend a good deal of time on a recent podcast making fun of people who call themselves doctor just because they’re lawyers.
Kathryn Rubino: Oh, we did.
Joe Patrice: And we stand by lawyers not being doctors but apparently, the whole idea of not calling yourself a doctor has become a thing.
Kathryn Rubino: Yeah, I mean obviously we’re talking about the recent Wall Street Journal op-ed that said that Jill Biden should not go by doctor. However, it is very clear that we disagree with this op-ed. I mean, this is a fun little op-ed, right? It is anti-intellectualism masquerading as misogyny, so super fun.
Joe Patrice: It’s not necessarily anti-intellectual in that he, himself, is a professor.
Kathryn Rubino: But he does not have a doctorate, right? It’s a guy who teaches with a Bachelor’s degree and is like, “If I can do it…” And it really would — I mean if you actually look at what I think this is actually is somebody who has to deal with doctors, PhDs, people have written doctorates in their job is very resentful that they don’t get to be called doctor even though they “do the same job,” so he has a bee in his bonnet that some people do the academic work to be called doctor and Jill Biden is just the latest of folks that he’s decided to pursue this anti-intellectualism bullshit with.
Joe Patrice: Well, so now here’s a question on that subject and I think you’re more or less right, but honorary doctorates, what do you do with those?
Kathryn Rubino: They are not doctors.
Joe Patrice: Interesting.
Kathryn Rubino: I mean like at the actual ceremony where they get it, sure, doctor. But you can’t then go around saying that — no.
Joe Patrice: Okay.
Kathryn Rubino: I don’t think many people who get honorary doctorates do go around saying that they have this.
Joe Patrice: Makes sense. Anyway, but yes, we do stand by our PhD friends being able to call themselves doctors.
Kathryn Rubino: Yes and literally in our original episode about why lawyers should not be called doctors, we talked a lot about how writing a doctorate dissertation is actually something worthy of being called doctor and getting a JD from —
Joe Patrice: Right. Well, and I pushed back and said that like to some extent that JD may actually be a scholarly accomplishment along the same lines as some PhDs but that does not change my reasoning that lawyers are not doctors and those folks are.
Kathryn Rubino: Lawyers are not doctors.
Joe Patrice: But yeah, anyway, since this blew up and we had just gone on the air with a diatribe about not calling yourself doctor, we felt a little bit —
Kathryn Rubino: Yeah, no, I mean people who have doctorates can call themselves doctor.
Joe Patrice: Yeah.
Kathryn Rubino: Lawyers cannot.
Joe Patrice: Juris Doctors cannot.
Kathryn Rubino: That’s horse hockey. I like that horse hockey as a —
Joe Patrice: I know, yeah. I’ve heard you say it before. You know though, we have quite the show lined up to talk about interesting to-do’s in the law. First off though, let’s thank — we have a bunch of sponsors these days, which is exciting. So, thanks to LexisNexis, Contract Tools, Lexicon, you’ll be hearing more from them throughout the show actually at this point, maybe you’ll hear from Lexicon right now.
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Joe Patrice: So, interesting news. We started talking about Jill Biden and her PhD. Let’s move to a new announcement. This is our breaking news. I don’t know, I don’t have a typewriter sound effect like breaking news.
Kathryn Rubino: You don’t know breaking news?
Joe Patrice: I don’t think I have —
Kathryn Rubino: Maybe like shattered glass?
Joe Patrice: No, I’ve got car crash. I guess that’s kind of like a breaking news thing.
Yeah breaking news! Well, because it’s broken? I don’t know. Anyway, breaking news that we have is that much as we followed Tiffany Trump’s travails through law school, Naomi Biden, the granddaughter of the soon-to-be actually within their voting in the electoral college now, so I guess really soon President will be joining the ranks of BigLaw.
Kathryn Rubino: Yeah.
Joe Patrice: She will be going to Arnold & Porter to work in BigLaw. She’s been at Columbia Law School, that kind of cow college up city.
Kathryn Rubino: You know what an elitist jerk you sound like when you criticize Columbia Law School for not being elite enough. I mean listen, and to be clear dear listeners, —
Joe Patrice: It’s a cross city rivalry.
Kathryn Rubino: It’s because I went to Columbia, right? And you think that this is some cute little banter that we’ve had for —
Joe Patrice: The whole time we’ve been working here, yeah.
Kathryn Rubino: Longer, but you think it’s cute because you went to a lesser law school than I did.
Joe Patrice: I mean, NYU was ranked higher while I was there.
Kathryn Rubino: Not the entirety of the time you were there, first of all. Second of all, overall, Columbia over the course of history, Columbia has ranked and continues to rank higher than NYU and you sound like an elitist jerk every time you make a dig at Columbia being lesser.
Joe Patrice: So anyway, as we’re discussing Naomi Biden here and you decided to go off on your own insecurities.
Kathryn Rubino: You’re such a jerk.
Joe Patrice: So anyway, Naomi Biden will be joining Arnold & Porter, which obviously is a large lobbying firm. Hopefully she is not going to be used as a lobbyist.
Kathryn Rubino: She can’t be, right?
Joe Patrice: That would be my hope.
Kathryn Rubino: I’ve got to think. I mean listen, she’s right out of law school, right? She just graduated this past year, so I mean, I imagine she’s doing some generic kind of work before she gets into lobbying. Does anybody go into lobbying right out of law school? That seems like a bold move. It seems to me like something people get into later.
Joe Patrice: Well, I think I mean they’re lobbying associates, right? Like as a practice area, it’s actually fascinating because we think of it a lot as PR work.
Kathryn Rubino: Because it is.
Joe Patrice: Well, that’s certainly part of it. But on the legal side of it, there’s lots of research that goes into saying like this is what — if you change the law in this way, it would have these effects and it wouldn’t be bad because of this and it would be constitutional because of this and like there’s legal work that goes into that practice area.
Kathryn Rubino: Sure.
Joe Patrice: Anyway, we will be following the first lawyer as I guess we’ll start calling her internally here.
Kathryn Rubino: I mean, is that what we call Tiffany Trump? I don’t think I did.
Joe Patrice: I did.
Kathryn Rubino: Did you?
Joe Patrice: Yeah. Well because the other alternative for first lawyer was Don McGahn and we don’t want to do that.
Kathryn Rubino: Oh my God, I can’t with him.
Joe Patrice: Yeah, no. Don McGahn is now apparently trying to sue the Pope. Is that the deal?
Kathryn Rubino: No, not quite. He represents the DC Archdiocese against DC’s regulations pandemic relations saying that 650,000 Catholics have had their rights impinged upon, which is horseshit. I said it the real version that time, but also because literally right after the Brooklyn Diocese tried to sue over the same thing, the Pope came out like the next day and was like, “Hey, you guys. You don’t have to go to church during a pandemic.”
Joe Patrice: Right, yeah. No, the Pope’s actually said that he disagrees with this successful Brooklyn Archdiocese.
Kathryn Rubino: It was ultimately successful because the Supreme Court is a broken institution. But the point remains that since that case, the leader of the religion that their rights were supposedly infringed upon by these regulations came out and said this is not infringed upon your religion. So that’ll be an interesting little wrinkle. I mean it’s not going to matter.
Joe Patrice: Well, I mean it doesn’t matter in our country which separates church and states. Yeah, no, very broken but this still is all the segment in which we’re talking about the President’s granddaughter.
Kathryn Rubino: Count it.
Joe Patrice: Yeah, but anyway, so hopefully, not doing lobbying I guess maybe it’s litigation or maybe it’s just basic transactional work. And if you work with contracts and don’t use Contract Tools, you’re missing a lot to save time, make more money, and do a better job for your clients with Contract Tools by Paper Software. Contract Tools is the most powerful word add-in for working with contracts. Thousands of lawyers all over the world rely on Contract Tools every day for every kind of deal. Visit papersoftware.com to watch a demo and get a free trial. As a special offer for podcast listeners, use coupon code LTN2020 to get one month free. That’s papersoftware.com and LTN2020.
So, there was another interesting order handed down in Delaware Chancery Court. I know as most listeners I assume you monitor the Delaware Chancery Docket every day. I mean, I know I do.
Kathryn Rubino: Do you now?
Joe Patrice: But there’s been a new decision handed down about a lawyer and dress codes.
Kathryn Rubino: Is there a decision about dress codes? This seems bold.
Joe Patrice: It is an order though in fairness, the judge wasn’t even clear it had to be an order. The last line is something like “to the extent this has to be an order, it is so ordered” but a lawyer in the case appeared in a Zoom trial and spoke and the judge, at least according to — well, as it develops, apparently, this lawyer says he was maligned by the judge just because he refused to wear a tie, which put aside whether or not you need to wear a tie. The order though, points out that well, you say not wear a tie, but you were wearing pajamas.
Kathryn Rubino: There are some differences for Zoom trials with in-person trials.
Joe Patrice: Hey, I mean we already had a story earlier this year about the dude who showed up to the trial shirtless. So, hey.
Kathryn Rubino: Maybe not. Okay, there’s a lot to unpack here. I think first of all, professional attire in courtrooms is probably not going away and that’s probably fine whether or not ties are part of it, I suppose, is a question brought up by this case.
Joe Patrice: Right. Well, so once the pajama-gate part was over, he was informed —
Kathryn Rubino: Was he really wearing just pajamas?
Joe Patrice: It’s unclear. The judge says it could have been a pre-printed like a print t-shirt but he said it wasn’t clear. Anyway, after being informed that you had to dress better, the guy came in a sports coat and an open collared shirt.
Kathryn Rubino: And the judge was still —
Joe Patrice: The judge was still upset about that. And that’s the part where the guy is basing his motion that he was maligned because he wasn’t wearing a tie. Obviously, it’s a little bit more than that, put aside whether or not sports coats and shirts reach the appropriate level of business attire, they decided it did not. The guy said he had a health condition that prevented him from wearing ties.
Kathryn Rubino: Is it the same health condition that prevents people from not wearing masks during a pandemic?
Joe Patrice: I’m sure it’s similar. But as it turns out, the judge said, well, one, “These are all things you could have told me beforehand.”
Kathryn Rubino: Agree.
Joe Patrice: “You didn’t. You now said that –”
Kathryn Rubino: Also, you showed up first in pajamas.
Joe Patrice: Man, yeah. “So, you’ve showed up at this point and now have said that you have a health condition and I will take you at your word on that at least for the sake of this order and this order will be you can wear a suit with a dress shirt that doesn’t have a tie assuming within the next 10 days, you file under seal some medical reason why you can’t wear a tie.” That’s how this story ends.
Kathryn Rubino: I don’t know, man. First of all, it’s interesting to have a man be the center of a dress code case.
Joe Patrice: Yeah, that’s fair.
Kathryn Rubino: Because normally, it’s women who are attacked for this sort of thing and I generally find that when women are under scrutiny for their attire, there’s a lot of terrible misogyny underlying a lot of these complaints.
Joe Patrice: Sure.
Kathryn Rubino: But don’t show up in pajamas.
Joe Patrice: Yeah.
Kathryn Rubino: And as a necessary reality, everything you say after you’ve already shown up in pajamas is going to be tainted by the fact that you initially showed up in pajamas. Like I can’t take you seriously when you say, “Oh, I have a mental condition that says I can’t wear a tie,” when your first impulse was to show up in pajamas.
Joe Patrice: See, the part that gets me though and I generally am on the judge’s side here but it does get me when he says in a footnote explaining the importance of a dress code and it’s proper attire for court is to project a unified recognition of the solemnity of the occasion, meaningful gesture to reflect respect for litigants, their cause, the counsel, and the judge at the court.
However, he also points out before he says that is like I suspect this goes without saying the reason judges don robes and counsel in business attire and I’m like there’s a good point. Why do we let the judge get away wearing a muumuu and then pretend it’s all about looking professional? Like we’ve given them the ultimate license to wear pajamas every day.
Kathryn Rubino: But no, they don’t have a license to wear pajamas. They have license to wear a very specific uniform. If a judge showed up in anything besides a black muumuu, right? But then it would be cause for note, but it’s not wear whatever you want. It’s you have to wear this very specific thing and as a result of all judges wearing this very specific thing, we have a very specific set of reactions when we see someone in that very specific uniform, right?
It’s not licensed to do whatever. Is it more comfortable than other attire? Maybe. I mean they usually wear — I mean, you can usually see for men, shirts and ties sticking out the top, jabot for women. It was a sneak promo for my —
Joe Patrice: Do you have a podcast called that?
Kathryn Rubino: I do have a podcast called Jabot. But there’s usually something in addition to the robe that lends an additional sort of level and there is business straight business attire underneath that as well.
Joe Patrice: Yeah, I mean, so you say.
Kathryn Rubino: Again, it’s not pajamas.
Joe Patrice: Yeah, well.
Kathryn Rubino: I mean, it isn’t.
Joe Patrice: Yeah, fair enough. But it’s trying to convey solemnity and I’m like that seems like a silly —
Kathryn Rubino: But at this point, maybe when the first judicial robe happened, it didn’t. But at this point, a black robe says judge. It says all those things. It’s a uniform and it’s not nothing and I think actually the fact that it is a gender-neutral uniform and there isn’t some sort of massive departure for women or for gender non-conforming folks is probably a good thing.
Joe Patrice: Yeah, that’s fair. There’s no good segue from courts to this. Well, it was Delaware Chancery Court and that usually involves law firms and so, how have law firms weathered previous economic downturns and come out stronger on the other side? LexisNexis interaction has released an in-depth global research report confronting the 2020 downturn, the lessons learned during previous economic crises. Download your free copy at interaction.com/likealawyer to see tips, strategies, plans, and statistics from leaders who have been through this before and how they’ve reached success again.
Kathryn Rubino: You’re obviously not trying hard enough. There’s a clear tie-in right there.
Joe Patrice: Oh, what was it?
Kathryn Rubino: Yeah, it’s because this guy wore pajamas because it’s at home because of a pandemic.
Joe Patrice: Oh, yeah.
Kathryn Rubino: Right?
Joe Patrice: Okay, yeah.
Kathryn Rubino: Yeah, like how — obviously the pandemic is affecting trials now that we have Zoom trials and people feel they can get away with pajamas. I wonder what else the pandemic has impacted?
Joe Patrice: Yeah.
Kathryn Rubino: See how that was a better intro to you —
Joe Patrice: Well, maybe if you want to take on any of the job —
Kathryn Rubino: Oh, I’m not taking on that work.
Joe Patrice: See?
Kathryn Rubino: I much prefer criticizing when you do a poor —
Joe Patrice: Right. No, I mean I’ve noticed over the course of this.
Kathryn Rubino: This is the first time I’ve ever criticized your ad read. I’m pretty sure.
Joe Patrice: Yeah. Let’s go to the videotape. Actually, there’s no video.
Kathryn Rubino: There’s no video.
Joe Patrice: Audio tape. So, hey.
Kathryn Rubino: They are in fact, public all these conversations.
Joe Patrice: That’s true. Anyway.
Kathryn Rubino: Somebody’s listening to them. It’s Christmas time!
Joe Patrice: Yes, so it is a holiday time. So, we thought — well, I thought that I would spring on you the real lesson of the season, which is the Hallmark Channel is going to make a bunch of movies.
Kathryn Rubino: No, they already have made.
Joe Patrice: That is true.
Kathryn Rubino: Scores of movies.
Joe Patrice: They have. But I did a little digging.
Kathryn Rubino: Did you now?
Joe Patrice: Yeah, on both Hallmark and the Lifetime Network. They are original movies that are for the 2020 season. Correct me if I’m wrong, I don’t watch a lot of these but the general —
Kathryn Rubino: You should. They’re fantastic.
Joe Patrice: The general formula here is that someone has a job, usually a professional job. It can be architect. It can be banker. It many times can be lawyer and then somewhere along the line, their job is going to get in the way of probably marrying somebody from their hometown who they abandoned years ago. Something like that, right? That’s basically every one of these?
Kathryn Rubino: Well, okay. First of all, it’s a lot of them. But fundamentally, what the movies are about are nostalgia, first of all, and also uh finding comfort in family and tradition and love.
Joe Patrice: Blah. So, let’s begin. The first one that I see on the —
Kathryn Rubino: Wait. They’ve been doing these movies forever.
Joe Patrice: Years, yes. They put out a list every year of like the new ones because they do like they churn out like 8, 9, 10 of these every year.
Kathryn Rubino: Per network.
Joe Patrice: Yeah, right.
Kathryn Rubino: So there are scores of them.
Joe Patrice: The first one that I see from their current crop that involves an attorney is Christmas By Starlight airing December 17th at 10. Annie, a lawyer, must help her loved ones this holiday season. Her family’s restaurant, the Starlight Cafe is slated for demolition. The heir to the development firm responsible, William, makes her an unlikely proposition.
He’ll spare the cafe if Annie spends the week appearing as his legal counsel his father is demanding he hire in the wake of some costly mistakes.
Kathryn Rubino: See now, this inverts that formula, right? The lawyer is not the one who has forgotten their family and all these traditional values. The lawyer is the one who is trying to save their family’s business.
Joe Patrice: Okay, well, so here’s the deal. I’m pretty sure Annie is a corrupt big law person and here’s why:
Female: I wouldn’t work for you for a million dollars.
Male: How about two?
Joe Patrice: Yeah.
Kathryn Rubino: No.
Joe Patrice: She’s bought and sold.
Kathryn Rubino: No. This is no. Clearly, in this particular — obviously, I haven’t seen it yet but obviously, the man, the developer fills the role of your corporate bad guy, right? They’re the one who can stop the bad thing from happening. They’re the ones who has two million dollars to throw about.
Joe Patrice: Yeah. The description here, he actually — well, this isn’t from Hallmark proper but from the website that compiles the descriptions, describes it as lawyer doing unusual pro bono work and I’ll tell you, two million dollars is not pro bono.
Kathryn Rubino: There is that but I also think that lawyers are frequently used in these genre of movies to be that kind of the person who has the knowledge who can stop the problem but not necessarily — but there is also a separate genre which is like big city lawyer comes like one of my all-time favorites, The Fresh Prince of Bel-Air star Tatyana Ali, a couple years ago started in a movie. I can’t remember the name of it, but she was a big law attorney. She’s about to make partner. She misses a call from her special needs sister who then dies by the way. She misses the call and then she goes back to like sort out her sister’s estate and then her sister’s attorney who I think she’s had some previous relationship with, of course, says that in order for her to inherit the family house that her sister was the heir to, she has to like live in her hometown for 30 days.
Now that is the prototypical. I think it’s Christmas Everlasting. That one is like the prototypical big law lawyer bad blah blah blah.
Joe Patrice: So rather than talk about movies from years ago, we’ll continue talking about the ones from this year.
Kathryn Rubino: I mean, we live in an Internet age, Joe. I am positive you can go see this movie anytime you want.
Joe Patrice: Maybe. All right. So, Lifetime Network has the Christmas Setup. The Christmas Setup follows the story of New York lawyer Hugo, who heads to Milwaukee with his best friend Madeline to spend the holidays with his mom Kate who is also in charge of local Christmas celebrations. What a fucking coincidence. Ever the matchmaker, Kate arranges for Hugo to run into Patrick. Hugo’s high school friend and secret crush who has recently returned after a successful stint in Silicon Valley. As they enjoy the local holiday festivities together, Hugo and Patrick’s attraction to each other is undeniable and it looks as though Kate’s Santa-style matchmaking is a success.
But as Hugo receives word of a big promotion requiring a move to London, he must decide what is more important to him.
Kathryn Rubino: He’s going to choose love. Is this the one that Andy —
Joe Patrice: I was interested because I don’t know how this is going to end.
Kathryn Rubino: That’s the best part about all these movies. You absolutely know how they’re going to end. That’s what makes them so fantastic and comforting for your soul. Is this the one that Andie MacDowell is in?
Joe Patrice: I don’t think so.
Kathryn Rubino: Is she not Kate?
Joe Patrice: Maybe.
Kathryn Rubino: I thought she was Kate because I’ve seen an ad for one of them where Andie MacDowell is the mom of someone and is the matchmaker. I think it’s probably her.
Joe Patrice: No, this is Fran Drescher.
Kathryn Rubino: Oh, even better!
Joe Patrice: Yeah.
Kathryn Rubino: This is so exciting. No, I’m definitely watching this and I don’t know if you saw in the beginning of the pandemic, some meme was going around about how folks who deal with anxiety and obviously that’s supercharged during the pandemic like watching the same movies and the same television shows over and over because they know exactly what’s going to happen and that’s comforting and that’s kind of what these Hallmark whatever network actually makes them, because there’s a bunch of them, but the kind of prototypically the Hallmark Christmas movies.
Even though you may not have seen that exact movie before, it is still that you know exactly what’s going to happen, you can do other things while it’s on and still kind of generally catch up. Like “Oh, what did I miss?”
Joe Patrice: This is why David Lynch needs to make a Christmas movie so that none of that happens.
Kathryn Rubino: It will not be on the Lifetime Network.
Joe Patrice: None of that happens. So, let’s see. Let’s do another Lifetime before going back to Hallmark.
Christmas on Wheels. Ashley returns to her small hometown to care for her uncle who recently broke his ankle when she learns that he has sold her mom’s vintage red convertible, a car that holds many wonderful Christmas memories for Ashley. She is disappointed but with the help of Duncan, her uncle’s attorney, Ashley is reunited with the car and restores it to its former glory and fills it up with gifts for the community just as her mother used to do. As she reconnects with happy Christmas memories, she feels torn about her plans to return to the big city and what she may be leaving behind.
Kathryn Rubino: Yeah, I mean, if anything what I would say the problem with this genre of movie is that it demonizes city living and makes it seem like true love and happiness cannot happen within the confines of Manhattan or something like that.
Joe Patrice: Yeah, like it embraces this kind of Nazi-esque pastoralism, yeah, no, definitely.
Kathryn Rubino: Yeah, I mean there’s definitely —
Joe Patrice: No, in fairness, they say small town. From the clip I’ve seen of this, it’s in Washington, State so I can’t imagine how — I mean there are small towns obviously in Washington but I feel as though this is like Seattle, which strikes me as less small city but whatever.
Also, why the hell are they in a convertible at Christmas? I mean I know Christmas in the Pacific Northwest is more mild, but it’s still not — you don’t put the top down. That’s all I’m saying.
Well, I have only one more that I was able to find of originals from this year, which is back to hallmark, what?
Kathryn Rubino: Oh, I figured out the name of the Andie MacDowell one. It’s Dashing in December.
Joe Patrice: Right. But there’s no lawyers involved.
Kathryn Rubino: But for that, it’s the same plot as the Fran Drescher one.
Joe Patrice: Yeah.
Kathryn Rubino: Well, I just wanted to say that I wasn’t like going crazy.
Joe Patrice: I didn’t think you were. What that might mean about that.
The final one we have is a Hallmark Channel Christmas With the Darlings. The description is: Just before the holidays, Jessica Lew, who’s played by Katrina Law, so it puts that in parentheses right afterwards so it actually reads: Just before the holidays, Jessica Lew, which, all right, but I figured it out.
Just before the holidays, Jessica Lew is ending her tenure as the assistant to her wealthy boss to use her recently earned law degree within his company but offers to help —
Kathryn Rubino: You’re not allowed to have a job while you’re in law school.
Joe Patrice: I mean, there are night school and stuff like that. That is a thing but I mean, no, I mean there really is. I mean New York Law School for years has operated on that, but still. But she’s managed to earn a law degree while working as a guy’s assistant, so that’s good for her.
Recently earned law degree within his company but offers to help his charming younger brother as he looks after his orphaned nieces and nephew over Christmas.
First of all, they’re not really orphaned, right? Like the wealthy boss still lives. It’s just —
Kathryn Rubino: No, I would imagine they have another sibling that has passed.
Joe Patrice: Oh, interesting. See, I was interpreting it as the wealthy boss can’t bother to go home.
Kathryn Rubino: No, I don’t. I don’t think that that’s what it’ll be. I don’t know, I haven’t seen it yet. But my guess is that there’s some additional family member that has passed. Also, like surprise tearjerker moments are a big part of the genre as well.
Joe Patrice: So this one, this is a person who has recently earned a law degree and I think it speaks for all of us who’ve dealt with people who’ve just learned their law degree to know that they get in annoying arguments for no reason and they’re usually wrong.
Female: What are the raisins?
Male: Raisins? You can’t have raisins and Christmas cookies.
Female: Of course, you can.
Male: No, it’s either shortbread or sugar.
Female: I like shortbread.
Male: I like sugar.
Female: I like oatmeal raisin.
Male: No. No oatmeal raisin. I can’t believe I’m explaining to you the rules of Christmas cookies.
Female: The only rules that they have to be shaped into something Christmasy like a Santa or a star.
Male: No, that is a hundred percent not true.
Female: It’s a hundred percent true if I say it is.
Male: This is the thing that you’re going to rebel against?
Female: We all have our chosen battlefields.
Joe Patrice: So yeah, no. See? I appreciate the attorney attempting to define things. It only needs to be shaped, which isn’t true but I understand the argument. I believe that —
Kathryn Rubino: Also I’ve never seen a cinnamon raisin cookie shaped —
Joe Patrice: Oatmeal raisin, but yeah. No, yeah, exactly.
Kathryn Rubino: I’ve never seen an oatmeal raisin cookie in a tree shape or Santa shape and —
Joe Patrice: How would you even do it?
Kathryn Rubino: Yeah. Like it’s not the kind of cookie that holds shapes particularly well. That’s why things like sugar cookies or butter cookies or shortbread get a tradition as being Christmas cookies because they are easily shaped. There are different kinds of dough involved and there’s different amounts of spreading involved but like a gingerbread cookie holds a shape and also the fact that the guy never mentioned a gingerbread cookie when that is obviously a staple of the Christmas cookie genre is unforgivable.
But the point remains that there are different types of cookies for different kinds of jobs and you could have oatmeal raisin cookies at Christmas if you would like to eat them but they’re not —
Joe Patrice: There’s nothing Christmasy —
Kathryn Rubino: Yes, there’s nothing inherently Christmasy about them first of all. Second of all, even if I say well, if you made them with your family, count it, whatever. If your definition of a Christmas cookie is that it has to be shaped, you’ve already lost because there are no shaped oatmeal raisin cookies.
Joe Patrice: Oh yeah. Exactly. I completely agree.
Kathryn Rubino: If that’s your definition, you’ve already lost.
Joe Patrice: Yeah, this is —
Kathryn Rubino: Because those are going to spread.
Joe Patrice: Yeah, this is poorly researched, this movie.
Kathryn Rubino: Yes. This is like, “Oh, let’s have her be argumentative for the sake of being argumentative,” as opposed to thinking this is not written by a lawyer who actually says well this is the consequence of your argument, right? If you propose a definition, your thing has to necessarily meet that definition. Otherwise, you don’t meet — if you don’t meet your own definition, you’re going to lose.
Joe Patrice: I think that’s right. This is also December 17th at 2. Yeah, no, but yes, that was Christmas With the Darlings, which is thematically similar to the title Christmas With the Cranks, which actually is written by a lawyer. Who wrote Christmas With the Cranks?
Kathryn Rubino: The Pelican Brief.
Joe Patrice: Yeah, John Grisham.
Kathryn Rubino: John Grisham.
Joe Patrice: Yeah, a little bit outside his usual genre. But yes, so good job. That was today’s trivia question. Anyway, so with that —
Kathryn Rubino: I think I’ve actually asked that as a Christmas — trivia question of the day.
Joe Patrice: I think you have to. Yes, so on Above The Law, if you aren’t reading it, you should be and there’s a trivia question there every day and that was one of them.
Kathryn Rubino: That was definitely one of them.
Joe Patrice: So, yes. Definitely read Above The Law. Definitely subscribe to this show. Definitely give it reviews, write some things, it helps move up the various algorithms. You should listen to the aforementioned Jabot, which Kathryn talked about her podcast. You should listen to the Legal Tech Weekly Roundup. I think it’s Legal Tech Week, yes. I think that’s it. Anyway, point is where we talk about legal tech stuff, you should check out all of the sponsors. LexisNexis Interaction, Contract Tools by Paper Software, and Lexicon. You should be following us on social media. I’m @josephpatrice, she’s @kathryn1 and I think now, I did those in slightly different order to kind of shake it up but I think now we’re done.
Kathryn Rubino: Bye.
Joe Patrice: Yeah, bye.
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|Published:||December 16, 2020|
|Podcast:||Above the Law - Thinking Like a Lawyer|
|Category:||News & Current Events|
Above the Law - Thinking Like a Lawyer
Above the Law's Joe Patrice and Kathryn Rubino examine everyday topics through the prism of a legal framework.