Shhh! The partner-who-golfs is teeing off, and he never likes it when you chuckle during his backswing. So you don't. Instead, you stand quietly as he adjusts his unorthodox stance, takes two painful-looking practice swings, and then gives it all he’s got with his new Titleist Titanium 983K driver.
Oh, too bad. The partner-who-golfs didn’t quite make it across the lake. As he reaches into his bag for another sleeve of Top Flites, you bite your lip. You’d like to laugh, but if you do, the partner-who-golfs is going to find a different associate to be his golfing buddy. And which would you rather do, bill eighteen hours for the partner-who-golfs, or accompany him for eighteen holes? The question implies an answer. It’s why you’re willing to help him with his club selection, correct his estimates of the distance to the pin, and give him seven more mulligans than he bargained for at the beginning of the round.
“Great shot!” you tell him on the next hole. “Those lessons are really paying off!” See how he smiles when you compliment his swing? Sure you’re sucking up, but who can blame you for making an old, balding lawyer feel as sprightly as Tiger Woods or as determined as Todd Hamilton?
So when the partner-who-golfs bends down to improve his lie, you look the other way. When he taps in a two-footer for a double bogie, you applaud. Are you being dishonest? Perhaps, but you’re also helping your career. And if you happen to get another golfing invitation in the process, so be it. You made your decision as you rounded the turn: the partner-who-golfs is the partner for you.[Like this post? It's one of many included in my book How to Feed a Lawyer (And Other Irreverent Oberservations from the Legal Underground). Details here.]
3. The "Types of Lawyers" Category--all types-of-lawyers posts