I’d Rather|Be Shagging

     Are there too many jobs out there?
     That question that came to mind last week after spotting a Wall Street Journal article on “How To Spot the Boss from Hell.”
     Check the office for a pitchfork or signs of small horns underneath the boss’s toupee?
     No. Apparently it’s more subtle than that. You need to check the guy’s wardrobe and see if her or his secretary is making eye contact. Stuff like that.
     After all, what’s the point of working and earning money if you’re going to have an unpleasant experience?
     It gets even more astonishing: “Ms. Nelson worked with a client who was interviewed by the managing partner of a law firm for a paralegal job.”
     Let’s parse that sentence.
     First, Ms. Nelson is described as a psychologist and author of a book called “Got a Bad Boss.” What the Journal article doesn’t say is that the book is about coping with a bad boss, not snubbing a potential boss so you can take one of the myriad other jobs out there.
     Then we have the mystery “client” who’s hired this psychologist. Did the client hire her to help get a dream paralegal job?
     If you’re going after one of those life-changing, perks-filled paralegal jobs, it’s best to have a psychologist on call to guide you.
     But I’m being picky. Of course you should consider whether you’d be happy in a job that’s offered to you.
     There are some fine tips in the Journal article (e.g. Googling the boss! Who would have thought of that?!?) I can offer a few more.
     Does the office have bathrooms? If so, are they indoors and, if not, are you in Chicago?
     Does it smell bad there? Have you noticed anyone in a gas mask?
     Do the curtains clash with the color scheme of the furniture?
     You don’t want to be seen in an office without a sense of style.
     
     Another employment tip: If you’re going to demand sexual favors in exchange for hiring someone, follow through with the job.
     That’s the lesson to be learned from a 7th Circuit ruling called Wilson v. Cook County.
     Here we learn that an unemployed massage therapist was willing to provide certain services to get a job at a hospital, until she found out that the job didn’t exist. Then she sued.
     Oddly, the suit was for denial of equal protection and due process rather than breach of contract.
     Consider this sentence from the ruling: “The two removed their clothes and Almaguer acceded to Vanaria’s wish that she manually stimulate him.”
     There was tickling?
     I’m pretty sure something was left out of this story.
     
     You’d rather be shagging? I certainly would rather be shagging. But apparently that’s not quite as much fun as it sounds. Clearly, I’ve been watching too much BBC America.
     It turns out that shagging, in North Carolina, is a dance of some sort. Please don’t tell me what sort – I’m having too much fun imagining it.
     I know this because it’s mentioned in a ruling from the 4th Circuit called ACLU of North Carolina v. Tata, in which we learn that North Carolina refused to allow pro-abortion license plates but did allow plates that said “I’d rather be shagging.”
     I thought this was wonderfully ironic until I found out that shagging is a dance. It’s on YouTube, not YouPorn.
     I offer this appellate ruling to you as yet another example of what courts are for: two years of litigation over putting a tiny slogan on a license plate – instead of a bumper sticker right next to the license plate.
     Lawyers need jobs, too.

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