I’m Rich!

     I looked myself up on Spokeo.com – one of those snoop-into-other-people’s-lives sites – the other day and discovered some interesting things.
     I have a house worth more than $1 million and I have a high school education.
     I didn’t realize this before.
     I’m pretty sure I don’t have a house worth $1 million. If I do, no one has told me about it before. Maybe it’s a surprise for my next birthday.
     I guess I do have a high school education, but they seem to have left out some other parts of my education.
     Well, it’s kind of a nice thought that someone with only a high school education could have a million-dollar house. Just because it isn’t me shouldn’t detract from the concept.
     I know some of you may be thinking the Internet is at fault for spreading wrong information, but I’ve been around for a while and I know this isn’t true. Wrong information got spread just as well before we had computers. I have vivid memories of fiction being spread in print over and over again by reporters simply reading previous stories and assuming there were true.
     So should we care?
     Of course. It’s a great thing. You can reinvent yourself.
     Want to have a big house and an impressive-sounding job?
     Put it on the Internet.
     Heck, with Photoshop you can even improve your looks. You can become a completely different person. Think what that will do for your self-confidence.
     It’s good for business too. It doesn’t cost you anything to brag about accomplishments (fictional or otherwise). It’s not your fault if other people – or snooping website operators – read your personal stuff and take it seriously.
     Which brings us to one of my favorite pastimes: creating law firms that should exist.
     If you haven’t played this before, the rules are simple. Find names of real lawyers in your area (just making up names is no challenge) and put them together into firm names. Then decide what sort of law they should practice.
     The Internet has provided us with another level for this game: put your fictional firms on LinkedIn.
     From what I’ve read, LinkedIn is one of the sources for Spokeo.com, so, naturally, that’s not necessarily true. But let’s assume that it is true. That means your fictional law firm could soon have clients.
     So get to work making up law firms. To get you started, here are some examples using real lawyer names I’ve spotted recently on Los Angeles lawsuits:
     Alfonso & Gaston
     Personal injury
     Jolly Friend & Benice
     Emotional distress claims
     Kiss Butland Wood & Ho
     Sexual harassment
     Do Math & Dicker
     Commercial law
     Constant Gardener Covert Cabal
     International law
     Paul Revere
     British Petroleum litigation
     Aftergood Richman & Youngerman
     Kill, Slaughter & Goudge
     Intentional torts
     Law Guy
     General practice
     I could go on and on. And I will later.

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