Southern Charm – #1LinerWeds

Last week, I introduced you to Don W, and attorney for a client of the accounting firm I worked for. Actually, Don W was one of two people I was working with at the time with the same name. At PriceWaterHouseCoopers, Don W. was affectionately known as DW2.

As I mentioned last week, I was inspecting, evaluating and researching a program that was running on a Data General Nova Eclipse minicomputer. I was also evaluating the computer itself. The computer had been modified and the plaintiff alleged that the modifications had led to data being changed. Those changes allegedly resulted in material losses of over $750,000.

My research, which included extensive testing, interviews with electrical engineers and with technicians at Data General had convinced me that no errors had been introduced into the system. I should point out that the company our client owned was located in Florida. The plaintiff was located and had filed a lawsuit in Kentucky. The deposition was to be in Orlando, but the trial was to be in Kentucky.

According to the Engagement Letter I was working under, my job was to educate one of the Partners in our Systems Development Practice (DSP), of my findings and prepare him to provide expert testimony. Since we know from last week’s episode that I was the one being deposed, let’s look at how that came to be the case.

Two weeks before my deposition, the Partner from our New York office arrived in Hartford for a series of meetings where I would be “bringing him up to speed.” DW2 got wind of our plans and asked for a conference call with everyone. The call took place in the office of the Partner-in-Charge (PIC) of the Hartford office. To make life easier, I’m going to use tags for this dialog:

DW2 – “Gentlemen. The reason I’ve asked for this call is so you can explain why Dan Antion is not going to be testifying in this case and will not be at the deposition I’ve scheduled.”

PIC – “That’s easy Don. Dan is not allowed to testify.”

DW2 – “I don’t understand. He’s done all the investigation.”

SDP – “Yes, and he is bringing me up to speed on those findings. I will be testifying. If you read the Engagement Letter, you will see that that was made clear in our Proposal.”

DW2 – “I still don’t understand.”

PIC – “Associates, even managers like Dan, can’t testify. We checked with our General Counsel, the testimony in this case is considered an opinion of the firm. Only a Partner can provide an opinion.”

DW2 – “This trial is going to be in Kentucky. The jury is sure to have more than one farmer on it. I can tell you with absolute certainty that they are not going to be impressed by some New York partner in an expensive suite who had one of his lackeys do the actual work. The plaintiff’s attorney will ask some question about how the work was done and your guy won’t be able to answer. I need Dan Antion on the stand.”

PIC – “That’s not going to happen.”

SDP – “I assure you; I am quite familiar with the situation. I will be able to answer any and all questions. This is how this has to be.”

DW2’s response to this last statement is my one-multi-liner for today.

“You know, you guys up there in the northeast amaze me. You got your General Counsel, your New York partner in his fancy suit and your firm’s rules and regulations. I got none of that. I’m just a lawyer in a small time Kentucky law firm. But you know what…? Down here in Kentucky, we have something called a subpoena. Ya’ll have those up there in Connecticut? The way a subpoena works, at least here in Kentucky, is I write one up, I file it with the court, I give it to you, and you put Dan Antion on a plane. You might want to check with your General Counsel to see if he’s ever heard of subpoenas.”

Don W

The two partners looked at each other. My boss and I were both trying not to laugh out loud.

DW2 – “Ya’ll have a nice day. Dan, I’ll see you in Florida.”

This post is part of Linda G. Hill’s fun weekly series One-Liner Wednesday. If you would like to join in on the fun, you can follow this link to participate and to see the one-liners from the other participants.

62 comments

  1. Hahaha! I love this lawyer. He’s s a hoot and I bet he’s also a hell of a lawyer.

    Great picture of Old Glory looking glorious, as always. The last picture of the sunrise is outstanding. The squirrel on the fence is a beauty with a tail to be proud of! Baby Smokey should take note!

    We are in the teens every morning. I can’t like it! Heavy frost everywhere. Sigh…..

    Ginger

    Liked by 1 person

    • It was in the twenties when we left for our walk. I don’t think we’d go if it was in the teens. The Editor worries bout Maddie’s feet.

      DW2 was a good lawyer, and so much fun to work with.

      The babies really need to study that fluffy tail for inspiration.

      My photos are running into each other these days. I need to get out more.

      Like

  2. Loved your story, Dan, and the one-liner. Perfect! And I loved the photos. The AMTRAK bridge capture is especially nice. Have a great day! 😊

    Liked by 2 people

    • Quite your contrary. I loved working with this attorney. I only meant to highlight how he took such an easy going approach to the situation. As opposed to the high and mighty approach of our partners. The deposition was unpleasant, but DW2 did a wonderful job preparing me, and he was always fun to be around.

      I have issues with some places in the south (mainly due to heat and humidity) but I have no issues with the southern people I’ve met. No need to apologize, Teagan. I’m sorry if I gave that impression.

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I had Andy Griffith as Matlock in my head reading DW2’s final thoughts. DW2 sounds pretty sharp and not a push over at all. So, you racked up some flying miles I guess.

    We can see the Trestle Bridge!! It’s a shame about the fence being up.

    Those squirrels are definitely getting their winter coats on! 😀

    Liked by 1 person

    • That’s a good image. DW2 was very sharp, and he got his way.

      They put that fence all the way along the tracks, from the bridge well up and around the curve. One big problem is that it blocks access to a hiking trail that started under the trestle 🙁

      This engagement was back when our office had a person in charge of making reservations. No personal points accrued on flights, cars or hotels.

      Liked by 1 person

        • I’m not sure. The trail was cut years ago by some Boy Scouts. It started heading north at trestle as south from there is all private property. AMTRAK seems to be saying that you can’t cross the tracks. It’s not a popular trail, but some people use it for fishing.

          Like

          • What it was probably a scout’s Eagle Project! Amtrak can’t, no they wouldn’t keep hikers and nature lovers from the trail…would they?

            There’s a waterfall in No. Calif. that one has to walk a mile plus on railroad tracks or beside them to get to. It gets so many people going to it a year the railroad is making a trail to it rather than have people on or beside the tracks. I’ve done that trek. It’s worth it. I’m glad they’re finally making a trail to it though. I wasn’t really comfortable trespassing. Maybe they’ll open up an easement to the trail for you all if enough people cross those tracks to get to the trail. One can hope!

            Liked by 1 person

            • I don’t know the whole story about the trail, it may have been an Eagle Scout project. The Windsor Locks Canal trail is on the opposite side of the river, but portions of it are closed when eagles are nesting (Nov-Apr). I’ve never been on this triail, but I’ve seen people (mostly fishermen) on it from the other side.

              I think (hope) AMTRAK is mainly interested in keeping people away from the maintenance they’re doing on the trestle. Hopefully, when the work is done, they’ll open a path to the trailhead.

              Liked by 1 person

  4. I love the Kentucky attorney’s determination and barbed wit. Not good for you at the time, Dan, but that was a LOL smart retort. I wonder how often he used that wit in the courtroom.

    I love the photo of the leaf and sun, but wait…there’s no Maddie head in that one. Did you leave her at home or what?

    Happy Wednesday. Enjoy the rest of your week.

    Liked by 1 person

    • He was a very good attorney, Mary. In a way, it worked out well for me. It gave me some credibility that allowed me to be involved with other projects (including one in Wausau, WI).

      Maddie spotted that leaf but there was something that smelled better.

      Liked by 2 people

  5. The Southern shutdown: “Y’all have a nice day, now.” End of conversation. Don W sounds awesome! How did the case turn out–just curious? The camera adds 10 ounces–well, that little guy is a bundle of love–a whole lotta love. This was such a fun one-liner, Dan.

    Liked by 2 people

  6. I love a happy ending, especially when the good guy wins, and it put me in just the right mood to laugh out loud at the “added 10 ounces.” That’s a great photo of the Amtrak bridge. Thanks for ending my day with a good chuckle.

    Liked by 1 person

  7. Well done DW2. I often have to interact with lawyers of the exact nature you have described. I have a happy dance I do when I am right and they are wrong. I get to dance it on every transaction. The moral of the story is don’t judge small blonde women wearing shiny shoes and flowery pants by bimbo standards. Some of them are pretty damn smart.

    Liked by 1 person

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