Today's mail brought the glossy, 60-page Graduate Report published periodically by my favorite law school and alma mater. My classmates are pictured running for governor and guiding major international corporations. I am delighted to report that I, too, made the cut.
For 20-odd years I have waited with patience and humility for UConn to take note of my many legal triumphs. I mean, I once wrote a riveting brief arguing that the U.S. Constitution does not prohibit the state from monopolizing the garbage industry. Few cared. Another time I engaged in extended one-on-one colloquy with the Chief Justice of the State of Connecticut trying to persuade her that the word "environmental" includes matters historical. Did anyone notice? Hell, no. It's not my fault she didn't buy the argument. Although I did get a nice footnote in the decision.
I thought someone would flag my ground-breaking interlocutory (deal with it: I'm taking to lawyers here) appeal to the Supreme Court that took unblushing advantage of the fact that the sitting Chief Justice and his second in command were both disqualified from the case at hand. Nope. Damn.
Okay, I'm being unnecessarily modest here, because I did once have a judge stop me in a courthouse hallway to tell me that the job I did on a trial was, in his words, "somewhat adequate." I asked him to put that in writing, but he just wandered off. You'll have to take my word for it.
So, as you see, I spent my legal career in genteel obscurity, pleasing a few unusually discerning clients and generally avoiding malpractice suits and disbarment and the like. Eventually, professional stardom having eluded me, I bailed out of Connecticut for sunnier climes, here to pursue important matters - my bridge game, driving aimlessly around the lovely countryside, and searching Tampa Bay for a decent glass of beer. That sort of thing. I have accomplished much in these endeavors, I might add.
But wait, there's more! Just when I thought I would live out my remaining days in blissful irrelevance, there I am on page 50 of the latest Graduate Report, with name spelled correctly and all. Right there in the same pages where an earlier graduate gets the library named after him and another becomes the chief legal bottle-washer at Wesleyan University. Heady company indeed.
Which of my numerous achievements, you may ask, so grabbed the imagination of the university that it thrust me onto this illustrious stage? How does one become famous enough to make the grade? It's not easy, my friends. I did it the hard way. I am honored to accept the University of Connecticut's recognition of this crowning achievement.
No, really, THIS crowning achievement. This blog, Eye of Newt. No doubt, the editors of the estimable Graduate Report have concluded that I am unlikely to do anything more significant than this, so it's best perhaps to recognize me now and be done with it. Anyway, Eye of Newt will live on in perpetuity, rules against such notwithstanding. (Another crummy lawyer joke - sorry.)
Lesser persons would celebrate by booking passage to Disneyland, but I instead scrambled to make sure my old articles had no egregious spelling or grammatical errors. I thought of deleting the trailer park articles and that unfortunate bit about the palmetto bug. But, no, I am who I am, and my erstwhile peers will just have to take me the way I am.
In closing, I would like to take this opportunity to ask all who noticed me in the Graduate Report to send me a dollar or two. If everyone did that, I could probably spruce up this blog a little. Social Security really isn't what it's cracked up to be.