The Usual Disclaimer: Yes, I work for a federal judge. No, these things did not actually happen to me. Also, the style of this comes from Bridget Jones's Diary by Helen Fielding. I highly recommend it if you haven't read it already.
Note: I was asked to do another "diary entry," so here it is.
Weight 135 lbs (not bad), caffeine units 3, calories 2100, alcohol units 2.
7:45 a.m. Made it to work on time for once. One might even call it being early. V. impressed with self. Reason for early arrival is that am doing The Cry today. V. scary thought as have to announce that court is in session in front of lots of people. Am reminded of time in fourth grade when I was lead in class play and proceeded to forget all my lines in front of all the parents. Assume this will be much like that. Only instead of making fool of self in front of parents, it will be in front of attorneys, marshals, and men who are about to go to prison and their families.
Not sure which is more intimidating, actually.
8:25 a.m. Aha! Have thought up brilliant plan to make The Cry less scary. Dawned on me part way through morning meeting that no one will be paying attention to me anyway. Think about it: the defense attorneys are scrambling to go over the presentence report with their clients, the defendant's are going to prison, their familes are sad about it, the marshals are joking around, and the A.U.S.A.s are doing whatever they do... in short, no one will care about me. Brilliance, thy name is Ruth.
9:30 a.m. Am so mortified.
Had words down pat until end, when I accidentally said, "God save the Queen," instead of "God save the court." Didn't even realize slip up at first. Sat right down and then heard muffled snickers from A.U.S.A. table. Judge Simmons's face had gone all pinkish too. He sort of choked out a laugh and told the deputy to call the case. Was okay until after morning setting, when Judge passed by me, mumbling, "Rule Britannia."
Am certain that will never be able to live this one down. Ever.
10:00 a.m. Ha. Ha. Ha. Whoever left the British flag on my desk is not amusing. At all.
10:30 a.m. Have concluded that jury charges are easiest thing in legal world to write. All one has to do is look up old charges in similar type of case and then change the parties' names, etc. Is almost joke.
10:35 a.m. But what if that's why they assign them to me? Because I, like the jury charges, am a big joke. Probably explains why people laugh at me all the time. Just because I get a little worked up over speaking in public or do silly things when people are watching doesn't mean that I don't have feelings too! Have half a mind to march into clerks' office and demand to be given more challenging assignments so that can reach full potential and become next Cardozo, only would like own future opinions to make sense and not baffle law students of tomorrow.
11:00 a.m. Hmph. Certain that Junior Clerk Juan thinks that photoshopping my face with a British barrister wig and emailing it to everyone in chambers is clever. Shall be first to inform him that he's not clever.
1:00 p.m. Hurrah! Have new, non-jury charge assignment. Finally have opportunity to show off legal genius! Am supposed to write memorandum opinion on some sort of motion having to do with evidence. Or something. Am a bit concerned as have not actually taken Evidence yet. Suppose that Federal Rules of Evidence are fairly straight forward and self-explanitory. Should be just fine.
2:00 p.m. Why have a rule against hearsay if you're going to have a gazillion exceptions to it? Seems easier to simply list the circumstances in which one can't use hearsay instead of the ways in which they can. Would probably take up less room.
2:30 p.m. Stupid Federal Rules. Don't get how anyone can make sense of them. Would probably have been better off writing memos and billing hours at some posh law firm that would buy me lots of fancy meals and things and get me drunk on the weekends, but instead thought it would be better to volunteer time for Judge because it would look better on my resume. Now realize that am not smart enough for court work, and by working for law firm would have been able to buy those really cute Louie Vatan shoes that were on eBay.
3:45 p.m. Suppose it's just as well. Cute Louie Vatan shoes were already won by someone else. She probably works at a high paying law firm. Not that I'd ever get on eBay from a government computer or even use it for anything not related to work.
4:15 p.m. Why is it that when broke, one can always think of like 33 things they'd buy if they had money. But then when one has money, they can't think of anything to spend it on. Or maybe it's just that by the time they have money, those 33 things they'd had their eye on are already gone. That sounds more like what happens. Is evidence that life is indeed unfair. Whether it's direct or circumstantial evidence is beyond my understanding at this point, however, because stupid Federal Rules are in serious need of editing.
4:30 p.m. Oh, yay. Judge has already gone home for day, which means I can as well. Can leave stupid evidentary motion for tomorrow, then will ask Juan for help.
4:45 p.m. Juan says it would be helpful if I'd actually read the case file first. Hmph. As if I wasn't going to do that at some point. Sheesh.
4:50 p.m. Okay, who pinned the British flag on my office door?