Monday, November 2, 2015

Why The Kansas City Royals Are Great and What They Can Teach Us

I love the Kansas City Royals.  Having been a Royals fan my entire adult life, I have seen a lot of losing games.  But, this team is different.  This team is way different from the 1985 Royals, which show-cased our only Hall of Famer, George Brett.  George Brett was a superstar.  There are no superstars on this 2015 Royals team.  There are no Babe Ruth-like home run hitters.  There are no Sandy Koufax-like pitchers. What the Royals have is so much more.  These are the qualities of the Royals that make them shine:

1.  Teamwork - They work together.  They celebrate each other.  When one player makes a good play, the others are ecstatic.  You get the impression that this team really cares about each other.  The whole is really greater than the sum of their parts.

2.  Hard work - While the Royals are talented, they work hard.  They run and jump just a little farther to make that play.  They practice catching the ball glove-less and stoking it back-handed to stop that potential double.  They work hard and go above and beyond what is required of a professional baseball player.  They require themselves to continually be exceptional, not be because they are exceptionally talented, but because they push themselves to be great.

3.  Trust - While I have criticized Ned Yost for being anti-sabermetrics, I see that he has a bigger plan.  He does not give up on his players.  Sometimes he has let pitchers stay in the game when it seems too long, but the real message to his players is that he trusts them to figure out a way to play their best.  Johnny Cueto struggled against the Blue Jays, but Yost slotted Cueto for the second game. Cueto was the only starting pitcher on either side of the game who finished an entire game, even though the Mets' strength was their starting rotation.

4.  PERSISTENCE - I wrote this word in all caps because persistence is what really makes the difference in this World Series.  And persistence makes the difference in real life.  If people give up easily, they are less likely to achieve their goals in life or lead a productive, satisfying life.  Coming behind in late innings 8 of 11 postseason games is nothing short of amazing.  When others would give up on the Royals, they never gave up on themselves.  In two of the World Series games, the first and the last, those kids tied up the game in the 9th inning and went on to win spectacularly in extra innings.  Wow!

I hope lots of parents are showing their children what the traits of teamwork, hard work, trust and persistence mean.  Through the entire existence of the Royals only one team member has made it into the Baseball Hall of Fame in Cooperstown.  None championship Royals of 2015 may see their way into Cooperstown, or maybe they will.  It doesn't matter. The Royals are Superstars, examples for us all.

Sunday, October 11, 2015


Old people are not well liked in the workaday world of this country. One friend of mine remarked that at her company, the days of retirement parties are distant memories. After age 55-60ish, employees are offered a "package" with a mandatory release attached. You know the deal - older workers are set in their ways, are slow, hate technology, yada yada. We represent many older workers in our office. Age discrimination is rampant in this country. 

I say bull. My 83 year old mother shops online, mainly from her iPad, wins trivia contests, and plays a mean game of bridge. Plus she texts us when something needs discussing. We love technology - at least the older folks in my family do. I go a tattoo with my daughter when I turned 52. Perhaps that's not something to brag about. I got my second tattoo at age 59. I don't plan to get anymore, but who knows?  

This is why I love older workers and why I am proud to represent them when their employers decide they are no longer useful -

1.  Older workers are dependable. They don't generally need "mental health" sick days to play hookey.
2.  Older workers are responsible. 
3.  Older workers are wiser. 
4.  Older workers are generally happier and get even happier they get older. People oftentimes become happier and more content as they age. 
5.  Older workers understand what is important in the world - family, friends, making a difference in the world.  
6.  Older workers are more self-confident. They realize the superficiality of material wants. 

You may say, "This is total generalization. She is just exposing her own bias because she is old herself."  And if you do say that, you are absolutely right. I love that I have been a lawyer for 32 years. If one is open to learning new things, one can learn a lot in three decades.  I love that my hair is gray, or a sparkly, shiny silver when the sunlight hits my head just right. I love that I no longer wear high heels or feel the need to ever wear high heels again. Those shoes are unhealthy and hurt. I love my wrinkles. Well maybe I only like the wrinkles, but I certainly would rather have my wrinkles than a tight phony face. I love my GROWN kids. I have always loved my kids more than anything, but it is so nice having them as adults with whom I can share deep conversations and experiences. I love my really old husband of 41 years. He is at 14 months older than I am. Old love is better than new love. Old love doesn't run off with the secretary or feel disgusted when he sees you snoring and drooling in the middle of the night.  

It's too bad these materialistic, competitive, upwardly mobile corporate types understand the pleasure of being old. If they did, perhaps employee morale at these mega-profit factories would increase. Life is too short to discard the wisest people on the planet. I pity the stupidity of the youthful corporate executioners.  They are sad and don't understand that treating others with respect and empathy are the true ways to fulfillment. At the end of the day, the corporate downsizes are likely to experience the same fate as their victims once they come of age. Life is too short. 

Sunday, September 6, 2015

Quotes By Two Crazy Men


All great movements are popular movements. They are the volcanic eruptions of human passions and emotions, stirred into activity by the ruthless Goddess of Distress or by the torch of the spoken word cast into the midst of the people. "


"Black guys counting my money! I hate it. The only kind of people I want counting my money are short guys that wear yarmulkes every day.” 


"All propaganda has to be popular and has to accommodate itself to the comprehension of the least intelligent of those whom it seeks to reach."


"I will be the greatest jobs president that God ever created."


"Hate is more lasting than dislike."


“Women have one of the great acts of all time. The smart ones act very feminine and needy, but inside they are real killers. The person who came up with the expression ‘the weaker sex’ was either very naive or had to be kidding. I have seen women manipulate men with just a twitch of their eye — or perhaps another body part."

Sunday, August 9, 2015

Legislators - -Are You Sexually Harassing Your Interns

Are you a legislator?  Do you wonder if you have sexually harassed your intern?  Well, let's look at these common situations -

1.  Are you an elected representative of a group of people who voted for you in public elections?

Yes ________.    No ________

If your answer is no, you are not a legislator. If your answer is yes, you are a legislator.

2.  Do you have an intern, oftentimes a young college student who gets college credit for working in your office, working in your office?

Yes ________.    No__________

If your answer is yes, or even no, but there are interns in other offices, answer question 3.

3.  Have you done any of the following:

   A.  Asked the intern out for a date, especially if you are married and there is a large difference in your ages;

B.  Intentionally brushed against the interns genitalia;

C.  Touched the intern often, such as massage the interns shoulders, hugg the intern, or touch the intern's butt;

D.  Ask the intern about his or her sex life, talk about your sex life, complain about your marriage, send sexy texts to the intern; OR

E.  Have sexual contact with the intern.

If your answer to any of the questions in A-E above is yes, you are sexually harassing an intern. Interns are generally young college students who admire politicians. Interns have much less power than legislators.  This is not an equal relationship. LEAVE YOUR INTERNS ALONE!!!

Dont't be a despicable pig. Keep your filthy hands off the interns!  If you don't, I hope your interns come to me to sue you. Finally, leave your interns alone.

Sunday, August 2, 2015

Do Wrinkled, Gray-Haired Workers Still Matter?

Should older workers retire to make room for younger employees?  Is there a finite number of jobs and are older workers selfish by hanging on to employment?

Missouri discrimination protections are broad, yet older workers in Missouri are only protected against age discrimination until age 70. Missouri judges must retire at 70, regardless of how effective they are as judges.  Federal judges have jobs for life and many federal judges work well into their 80's. Most United States Supreme Court justices are over 70, certainly over 65. Ronald Reagan was president well after age 70. I am 62 years old and I feel like I may have many good years ahead. However, if I retired I suppose younger lawyers would take on the cases that I am no longer accept.

We are recently past a recession that kept many younger workers unemployed and living with parents. In places like Greece, unemployment among recent high school and college grads are more likely to be jobless than employed. What is the solution?

It seems that as I get older, I represent more older people forced out of their jobs. Companies are not loyal to workers, but I read that businesses complain that they suffer from disloyal employees. No loyalty on either side. Remember when workers retired with dignity at big parties hosted by the company after 40 years or more of service?  I do. Now lay-offs are not just for poorly performing companies, but a sign of value for the almighty stockholders. Remember when people were loyal to their jobs, not searching for a better deal or easily lured away by a better deal.

The current corporate environment is not one of loyalty on either side. Both employees and employers treat each other as expendable. However, the people who are more vulnerable, usually the older ones, are more likely to be betrayed. Instead of lavish retirement parties, older workers are forced out, given paltry "severance packages" and forced releases.

Loyalty is important in life. Loyalty fosters security and trust and thus can create satisfaction. Satisfaction is happiness. I know of a workplace where the boss was suffering financial reverses and laid off employees by memo laid on the employees' desks. One of the cut workers was a faithful employee whose breast cancer had resurfaced and would eventually kill her. What did this woman's co-workers do?  They got together and offered to cut their own hours so that the sick woman could keep her job. That is loyalty. I am fortunate.  One of those giving, caring workers works for me now. I am truly blessed. Our workers are loyal, caring and hard-working. I would do whatever I could to keep them. They are our employees and people I can trust. I know this may not be businesslike, but I love them. I am excited when their grandchildren are born into this world, their children are married and their husbands retire. I would no more put one of them out than I would leave my mother or children homeless. I know they will retire someday, we are all in our 50's and 60's.

It saddens me when I am contacted by a hard-working older person whose company has "put him or her out to pasture."  There is such a sense of betrayal that some can never overcome. Sure, young people need jobs. I believe in mentoring young lawyers. We throw enterprising newer lawyers business and enlist the ones we trust to work with us on cases. There is room for all.

In societies where there are many generations in households, the elders are treated with more respect than sometimes happens here. I sure am glad that there are keen, wise, older people, like Justice Ruth Bader Ginsberg, protecting all of us. Thank goodness for people like the Pope and elder statesmen who show us the way with their wisdom. I bet Justice Ginsberg is not a whizz on an iPhone and she may enlist her law clerks in researching the law on the Internet. We shouldn't throw out the baby, or the old woman, with the bath water.  There are gifts that all generations can bestow on society.

Sunday, July 5, 2015