When I was Almost Famous Long Ago…
Once upon a time I was famous. Well, not very famous, but just enough to claim I was. I was on Nightline and countless other TV and radio shows. My client and I were flown – free! – to Melbourne to appear on a national television program. Reporters hung on my every word and then distorted them.
Caroline Kennedy – yes, that Caroline Kennedy – traveled from New York to interview me for a book she was writing. I was on a first name basis with reporters for the New York Times and the Wall Street Journal. Sally Jessie and Maury wanted me to be on their shows.
Why was I almost famous? A once in a lifetime case fell at my feet. All I had to do pick it up and run with it. Three years of delightful legal fun and games with sweet victory at the end of the day. At the trial the courtroom was packed with reporters clacking away on their laptops every time I spoke. At every recess I was surrounded by a scrum of cameras and microphones. The next morning I could read about me – well, actually, my case – in national and local newspapers. No doubt about it, I was a reasonably large big shot.
After the trial (which, in the scheme of things, was really pointless since the case involved a purely legal issue) my fame began to wane. No more frantic calls from the network morning shows, no more limos coming to my house to whisk me to the local studios. I still got calls to be a radio guest or to give my comments to a newspaper for a feature piece, but the bright lights were mostly gone.
By the end of 1993 I had sunk into obscurity. I was back to being just another small town lawyer and nothing more. The overwhelming majority of my cases were mindlessly routine: divorces, petty criminal cases, and a handful of collection cases.
But I’ve had the pale consolation of my memories of those fifteen minutes. And if you give me half a chance I’ll tell you all about it till you faint from boredom!
Photo by Kelly Ida Scopes, subject to this creative commons license
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