As I pretended to listen to a sous-chef blather about crème brulee, I was certain of two things: Wendy, the relatively hot summer associate, would be naked in my bed by the end of the night; and I would live to regret our night of drunken sex.
God I hate the Summer Program. They should just call it Regrettable-Decision Season. The golf outing is decent, if there happens to be a young lady at your Firm who has fake cans and is willing to sit by the pool in a bikini, and the Broadway show is fine, as long as you are the one guy who hasn’t already seen Wicked. The rest of it—namely, partners and associates getting wasted and trying to sleep with impressionable Summers who are basically on an extended interview—feels like playing Russian roulette with your career.
But if you’re pinned between high-stress and mind-numbing boredom, Russian roulette can be a welcome distraction. So, Summer Associates out there, take caution—you are being judged both as a professional and as a potential hookup. But if you are a mildly attractive, morally casual female associate, don’t take too much caution, please.
I knew it’s a mistake to bang a Summer Associate like Wendy. I knew she was going to tell someone. Seriously, have you ever hooked up with someone and not told a soul? The sheer anxiety of our inevitable rendezvous was enough to make me up my Paxil intake.
I almost got fired the summer previous when rumors swirled about me banging Suzie, an Asian Summer. Something about doing karaoke really brought out my Asian fetish. I can’t help myself. Lawyers like me only get to look cool on rare occasions, like when the Firm sanctions me throwing down my credit card at some nightclub. That is my best opportunity of the year to get laid.
If you see me at a Summer Associate event, you can assume that 1) I will be coming in late tomorrow, if at all; 2) I have a condom in my wallet; and 3) I have the music channel playing in my bedroom.
So how did I pick Wendy?
I have a simple formula: I start from the hottest (relatively) and work my way down, eliminating all the ones who definitely won’t cheat on their fiancées, until I get to the Summer who demonstrates the right balance between sex appeal and poor decision-making.
Wendy fit the bill because 1) she possessed an ass that hadn’t yet been molded into the shape of her chair; 2) was a sorority chick, which is Greek for willing to experiment; and 3) wasn’t all that committed to her boyfriend—a summer at some other firm who didn’t know that in New York, you definitely need to put a ring on it.
Wendy made it clear that she thought hooking up with an associate like me was trading up when she smiled as I elbowed my way onto the dessert team—her team.
When innocent flirting led to her playfully smearing my arm with frosting, and then slowly wiping it off, I knew it was on.
Toward the end of the event—as inebriated lawyers and Summers polished off the food they “made” with the help of professional chefs—I gave the usual spiel to the recruiting chick.
“So, these kids want someone to take them out,” I said as earnestly as I could. “I’ll try and keep them under budget and keep an eye on them.”
Thirty minutes later, we were at some club throwing back shots of Patron. If there’s one thing I’ve learned in my four years of practice, it’s that Patron equals instant game.
Four shots in and I could feel Wendy’s hand on my leg.
“Who wants more shots on [Law Firm name redacted]?” I asked.
It was like a game of Survivor, but I had it in the bag. I was buying the shots, and the self-proclaimed cool kids—two all-right Summers whose names I couldn’t remember—didn’t stand a chance in the Wendy stakes.
We polished off the fifth round, and then I told the table that I needed to be up for an early conference call. I covertly slipped Wendy a napkin with my address and hailed a cab.
Exactly twenty-seven minutes later, there was a knock at my door. But before I could answer, the usual fears came rushing back.
What if she tells someone? What if I get fired? What if her boyfriend finds out, kills us both and I end up as fodder for The NY Post.
Through the door I heard Wendy say, “Oh my God, how shady are we?”
The fear didn’t stand a chance.
I opened the door, and as I poured two vodka sodas, we struck an accord—there would be a definite gag rule in effect.
Music channel. Check.
Mildly intoxicated, relatively hot summer associate who would (hopefully) keep it on the down-low. Check.
Aside from asking her if the Asian characters tattooed above her ass meant “do not enter,” the sex was altogether forgettable.
In the morning, she left without saying a word.
I laid low for the rest of the summer. I skipped the golf outing and increased my intake of Paxil again. I maintained my distinction as the only guy at the firm who hasn’t seen Wicked.
I managed to avoid Wendy completely. But it isn’t until the going away party at Nobu that I learned that stealth wasn’t required. Wendy split the summer with the D.C. office.
That was late August.
With no summers around to corrupt, the fall went by without a hitch. HR never came calling. The partners never asked about my extracurricular antics. And the angry boyfriend never materialized.
Wendy had held up her end of the bargain.
And then I realized I had failed to lock down a long-term deal.
One of the self-proclaimed cool kids (apparently his name was Brad) sent me an email telling me that he had accepted the firm’s offer. Then he referenced how much fun he had over the summer with me, Josh (I guess that was the other “cool kid”) and Wendy, and that the four of us should grab drinks regularly next year.
A quick call to HR confirmed what I already knew—Wendy had accepted her offer. What a way to begin the winter.
Wendy will return this summer. My Paxil intake will rise again. And one of these days HR will call. And what can I tell them when it comes up at my next review?
If you don’t want me to bang the summers, don’t hire the hot chicks.