How to Feed a Lawyer (and Other Irreverent Observations from the Legal Underground)

    Click on the book cover for details!

« Weekly Report #49: Merry Christmas | Main | The Monday Morning Books-Blogging Post »


David Giacalone

For far too long, far too many of America's best and brightest have gone to law school, because of the allure of status, wealth and power. The best thing about Jeremy's writing as AL is that it may help persuade many students with the most to offer our society to find ways to fulfill themselves and serve society productively and creatively outside of the law. Saving themselves from a predominantly sick profession is a far more practical goal than ever hoping the profession will cure itself.

As usual, I suggest reading Prof. Patrick Schiltz's article about our trying to stay healthy in our unhealthy profession.

p.s. Jeremy sure does debunk the notion that law grads come out of our elite school not knowing that they will be selling their souls if they choose BigLaw.


It's really not surprising to me that JB is AL. I've never liked Jeremy's writing in any of its many forms (his blawg, Crescat, De Novo) and I despised the drivel that AL was spouting. I am nothing if not consistent.

That said... ease up, man. You're acting like J is the greatest thing to happen to blogging since the invention of DSL. One satire site that a good number of people hated or thought was crap does not make him great. Four different blogging gigs does not make him anything other than a law student with an insane amount of free time. He writes pretty well, I'll grant that. But he's not funny and, 99% of the time, he isn't interesting, either.

I'm sure this all comes off as sour grapes. It's not. I think it's awesome for him that he got in the times and I give him props for fooling so many people for so long. Still, it is what it is. And what it is is nothing special.


Soup: Thanks much for your comment. I don't think that Jeremy's various weblogs or the NYT article means too much for blogging, but it certainly means something for Jeremy. If my enthusiasm is turned up one too many notches, it's only because I'm happy for him. For various reasons, he's someone I identify with. Also, as I know from years of past experience, promoting yourself as a writer is hard work, and there's lots of competition. For Jeremy to get himself written up in the NYT is a hell of an achievement. But it's only one tiny step along the way--who knows what will happen to him from here.

What about Jeremy's writing? Is Anonymous Lawyer "crap"? I don't think so, but reactions to humor and satire are very subjective, so it doesn't surprise that some--even many--don't like A.L. It would be more interesting to know why they don't like it, but I haven't seen any extended criticisms from anybody. Instead, when the NYT article came out, almost everyone posted favorably about A.L., making me think that the site's popularity was greater than I had imagined.

Is there a larger meaning to the Anonymous Lawyer weblog? I thought it was entertaining; I thought it was an interesting experiment; I thought it was one more example that the techniques of fiction and satire can sometimes be used more effectively than straightforward exposition to make a point; and I liked the way that a weblog was fused so seamlessly with fiction and satire. I know Jeremy wasn't necessarily the first to do it, but I think he did it well. At this point, however, I'm not willing to read any more into the Anonymous Lawyer than this. I certainly don't endorse David's comments. I don't think the Anonymous Lawyer website is proof that the best and the brightest are being wasted in the legal profession; I don't think that the legal profession is "predominantly sick"; and I don't think that you "sell your soul" if you "choose BigLaw." If these are the conclusions David draws from Anonymous Lawyer, that's fine, but I disagree with all of them.

It's true the Anonymous Lawyer might reflect on some of these questions, but I don't think it was meant to answer them. Moreover, how one person--Jeremy--chooses to fashion his career is not a criticism as to how others do it. Reportedly, Jeremy turned down an offer from a large firm and wants to write full time. Should all law-school graduates act like this? Of course not. I certainly didn't. As I've said on this site many times, after I graduated from law school I chose to work in the very type of firm that is satirized in Anonymous Lawyer. It wasn't perfect, but generally, I liked the experience. I met many fine people within the firm and at no time was I asked to abandon my soul. I think I can hold these beliefs and still like Anonymous Lawyer.


David G's comments are right on the mark here. And my thanks to him for posting on an article to read regarding the nature of our profession. I'll follow up on it.

Verify your Comment

Previewing your Comment

This is only a preview. Your comment has not yet been posted.

Your comment could not be posted. Error type:
Your comment has been posted. Post another comment

The letters and numbers you entered did not match the image. Please try again.

As a final step before posting your comment, enter the letters and numbers you see in the image below. This prevents automated programs from posting comments.

Having trouble reading this image? View an alternate.


Post a comment

Your Information

(Name is required. Email address will not be displayed with the comment.)

My Photo

Search Beyond the Underground