Dream of: 18 October 1986 (3) "L.A. Law"
I had returned to Dallas and was talking with another lawyer who mentioned that I had a couple cases which were supposed to come up in judge Schwille's court that morning. In one case I was supposed to represent Tubbs (a Portsmouth acquaintance) who had been charged with driving while intoxicated on alcohol. I had completely forgotten the cases, which were ones I had had before leaving Dallas to go to Canada. I had thought I had transferred all my cases to another lawyer, but apparently I had overlooked a couple. I had once before returned to Dallas and taken care of two other overlooked cases.
It was already after 9:30 and I was only wearing an old pair of raggedy blue jeans, an old shirt and a pair of tennis shoes. My hair was also very long. I thought, "I've got to go up there anyway to make sure everything's going OK."
I raced up to judge Schwille's court and walked in. I didn't see the people I was representing and I was relieved to think perhaps they hadn't appeared. I briefly spoke with one of the prosecutors about the cases. I thought one of my clients would be willing to pay a $200 fine, but the prosecutor wanted a $400 fine. So it looked as if we would have to go to trial on that case although it looked as if it would be postponed to another day.
I sat down in the courtroom and noticed a jury in the jury section which had a lawyer amongst them. Finally Schwille came out. Apparently the lawyer was going to try a case and I gradually realized the people in the jury seats weren't jurors, but defendants. That was surprising because there were so many
Schwille asked the lawyer where he was from and the lawyer said something about HBS. I thought the letters might refer to Harvard Business School but then the lawyer said the letters referred to Highland Business School, the college he had attended. The lawyer had never been in this court before and everything was new to him; but the judge was quite friendly to him.
Schwille told the lawyer he wasn't going to be able to hear the lawyer's case for several weeks and he gave the lawyer another date. The lawyer and defendants rose to leave.
I began thinking about the process whereby lawyers were appointed to indigent defendants in this court. Some kind of document probably needed to be prepared so everyone in the court would know exactly what they were supposed to do. I envisioned the document as a kind of Constitution, although the court would still be a kind of monarchy because the judge would still have to approve everything. The lawyers perhaps could vote to pass the document and later amend it, but the judge would have the final authority. It seemed as if the document would be an interesting one to prepare.
When the judge walked back to his chambers, I followed him because I wanted to talk to him for a while. I noticed Vestal (Schwille's court administrator) there, I but didn't say much to her. I had already firmly decided I wanted to work in the court again. I asked the judge to please forgive me for being dressed the way I was. I knew a tie was required to be worn in the court. I told him that it wouldn't happen again and that I hadn't planned to be in court that morning. He didn't seem to mind.
I got ready to leave the court room. Many other lawyers were also leaving; about a half dozen of them were on crutches – apparently they had broken legs. Two female lawyers (one was Newkirk) were in wheelchairs. The number of disabled lawyers in this court was remarkable.
After I had left, I began to think how I would really like to stop doing everything else and just practice law for a while. I would like to start reading cases again and learning different things about the law. I might even be interested in reading cases on such subjects as trusts and estates, which I hadn't liked before. I would even like to read the Uniform Commercial Code. Many areas of the law began going through my mind. I might even like to work with income tax.
I wondered where I could find some cases. I figured it would be easy to find some pro bono cases to start working on, but I thought I still had some cases which I had never completed when I had been in Dallas. I could do some work on a couple bankruptcy cases I had left pending. Or I could work on the case for Mr. Smith (a legal client). As far as income taxes, I could even work on my own income taxes. I thought about some aspects of income tax such as income averaging. But I really didn't like income tax. I wasn't sure why. I thought if I would study income tax I could probably even work abroad in that area. I thought about the income tax lawyer Stuart Markowitz (the character played by Michael Tucker on the television series "L.A. Law") and about how specialized that area of the law was.
I walked into a room which in a way reminded me of a grocery store but which had carols in which to sit. I sat down in a carol near where other people were sitting.
I had with me some things which I had brought back from Canada, among which was what looked like a pop bottle covered with the skin of a deer. It had some kind of point sticking out of its top and had a design around the top. The skin was wet in a couple places. I recalled that I had found a dead deer lying in the road in Canada, had had the deer skinned and then had had part of the skin put on the pop bottle. I thought it was all right to have the skin since I hadn't actually killed the deer, although I wouldn't have wanted the skin if I had been the one who had killed the deer. I showed the skin to someone and I mentioned that no deer like that were in the United States.
No wall was on the side of the room where I was. I looked outside through the missing wall and on a distant mountain top it appeared I could see a deer like the one whose skin was on my pop bottle. Someone mentioned that deer like that indeed were in the United States. I didn't argue with them since I really didn't know that much about it. Perhaps there were.
I rose and walked over to another carol where I saw Sharon (my legal assistant) sitting. I wanted to talk with her. She didn't seem surprised to see me and she mentioned that I hadn't contacted her since I had returned to Dallas. Someone walked up and hit me on the back of the head so hard that I almost passed out. I turned around and saw that it was Leland (a Dallas attorney). He had just been joking around, but I didn't like the fact that he had hit me like that.
I walked over to another carol and sat down next to a heavy-set woman sitting in the neighboring carol. I laid my head down as if I were asleep although I wasn't. The woman began caressing my hair and she slightly held my hand. Although I wasn't attracted to the woman, I didn't care if anyone saw. It seemed the time had come when I needed to become more open in my relations with women and shouldn't try to hide anything. For example even if I were with a woman whom I didn't really care about, I shouldn't let it disturb me if someone else saw me with her because I would only be with that woman a short while and then would change.
The woman was wearing headphones and listening to a cassette tape I had once recorded. Some of it was poetry and I could hear the speaker reciting poems by William Butler Yeats. It sounded quite nice. I also heard some Spanish poetry which I recognized as poetry I had taped.
Finally I stood up and heard some music. It seemed as if I were in the aisles of a grocery store and I decided to dance. Other people began dancing first and I jumped right in. The dance was fast. About 15 people joined in the dance and we danced up and down the aisles. I danced for a while with one very pretty girl. One fellow dancing reminded me of Beasley (a junior highschool schoolmate). Finally everyone was dancing with everyone. I really seemed to be adept at the dance and I was very much enjoying it.
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