Baby Don't Be So Mean
The other day I got a call from a very persnickity attorney. I don't necessarily mind when people are mean or condescending to me, but you've got to earn it. You've got to be that much better than me. Here are some criteria you'll have to meet before I let you talk down to me:
1. If you're going to be condescending, you're going to have to be that much smarter than me. My intelligence will have to clearly pale in comparison to yours. And not to brag, but I've got 26 years worth of test scores that say that's pretty hard to do. Depending on who you ask, there's somewhere between a 1-in-15 and 1-in-50 chance that you're as smart as me. And remember, in order to be mean to me, you'll have to be scoring significantly better than that.
2. You have to be better-looking than me. This is less difficult to do, but remember you've got to do it whilst still clearing the Smarter Than Hurdle. It may be superficial, but I refuse to be talked down to by someone who looks like the Elephant Man. I'll just be thinking to myself, "Maybe I can't figure out how creditors' rights are affected by gerrymandering in a Chapter 11 Bankruptcy, but at least I can figure out how a treadmill works."
3. You've got to be better-schooled/more successful than me. This would involve something like going to Harvard for undergrad, Yale for law school, clerking at the Supreme Court, and then making $160,000 in your first year at White Case. As you can imagine, that's pretty hard to do. What I'm basically looking for is someone who's talent is undeniable as to be immediately self-evident.
Here are some famous assholes I would have let be mean to me:
Frank Lloyd Wright
I'm talking about guys who changed the nature of their profession. Whether it be architecture or crafting the Silmarils, these guys, to quote Wolverine, were "the best at what they did."
4. If you're significantly more experienced than me I'm willing to be flexible on one or two of these criteria. Example: if you've got 40 years experience in the profession I don't necessarily expect you to still be more attractive than me, but you should at least have been a looker back when you were 20.
5. Your girlfriend/wife should also meet these criteria. I won't take crap from someone who's dating Betty Bimbo.
Good night, and good luck.