Even though I could easily fill my dance card with adultery-craving perverts masquerading as partners, this past holiday season marked the end of (yet another) fairly promising dating relationship with a non-lawyer.
The most-recent contestant eliminated from my secret reality game show “Who Wants To Make Me a Millionaire Stay-at-Home Mom” (just being honest) was an incredible, upwardly mobile MBA who was also the most attractive guy I’ve dated since I was 19.
Now that I only have a mostly unused elliptical machine and a 50-inch flat screen to keep me company in my precious few moments of free time, I can’t help but reflect on the cardinal sins I committed while chasing the 2+ carat cushion-cut rock of my dreams.
Here’s what I came up with:
1Admitting that I recorded the time I spent on dates with him and applied it towards my non-billable “marketing” hours requirement for the year.
2Bringing him to the firm holiday party and not leaving the right after the drunk partners began cutting loose for the first time since the last holiday party.
3After our second attempt at sober sex, answering honestly when he asked what I was thinking about and finding that nothing chills an already awkward intimate moment like “causes of action under the Uniform Fraudulent Transfer Act.”
4Telling his non-lawyer friends that my practice area is complex commercial litigation, then mistaking their disinterested silence for ignorance and slowly explaining, “When companies sue other companies, I help to defend them,” with a look of patient pity on my face.
5Convincing myself out of sheer laziness that he might have a secret fantasy involving Ann Taylor skirt suits.
6Constantly objecting that his answers to my questions were “non-responsive.”
7Picking apart every single detail that came out of his mouth during our (one and only) fight until he screamed, “Stop cross-examining me!” and stormed out of my apartment.
8Habitual use of “re:,” “inter alia,” “to the best of my knowledge,” “notwithstanding the foregoing” and “to the extent that” in emails and casual conversation.
9Staring blankly at him when he asked what I like to do other than work.
10Drunkenly revealing that I had (mis)used the Westlaw free password to conduct a number of public records searches on him.
When I look at it all laid out, it’s painfully obvious that the key to maintaining a lawyer-civilian relationship is to mentally delete all those asocial, annoying tendencies that make us good at our jobs—because those are the traits that make us horrible at our relationships. Lucky for me, it’s a big city, so maybe next time. Maybe the next attractive, high-earning businessman I date will get to experience a potential trophy wife who adequately suppresses her work self.