A trial lawyer's occupational hazard: details details details

  Photo:  a portion of my closet...

Photo:  a portion of my closet...

Here is my confession of the day.  I am not only highly detail oriented at work.  There is some spill over.

My girls have done their best to keep me from going over the edge into full blown OCD.   We used to have a rule from the time they could walk.  The house stayed clean except they had dominion over their own rooms.  So long as I could close their doors they could do what they wanted.  That is until I eventually couldn't stand it anymore and picked up and sorted through the various piles of debris.

They would commonly complain that I had picked up their dishes before they were done eating.  Or I moved a critical piece of something before they were finished using it.  "Relax mom " was one of their most common phrases to back me down.  Still is....

It's simply that I like things just so.  My office is clean like my house.  I like order and symmetry and pretty pictures that don't hang crooked.  Every drawer deserves dividers and little baskets to help it become completely organized.  Except the one drawer in the kitchen that is intentionally left messy.  So we can call it a junk drawer.  It is really a test.  I catch myself wanting to clean and sort through it.  But usually resist the urge.

At work this skill set comes in handy.  The most detail oriented person in my office is Paul Stritmatter.  When we work on cases together it is almost frightening.  He'll send out an email with a list of maybe 20 things and then I'll add another 20 things and then he'll add another bunch and then so will I.  And so on.  Of course we make it a competition. And have a great time.  And our paralegals are rolling their eyes.

There isn't a button I can push to completely turn off my very particular lawyer's brain at home.  But it's okay.  Because over time, my kids have adapted.   And become a bit like me.