Duty (Never) Calls


My supervising partner comes into my office and says, “Might need you this weekend.  Be available.” I get it—it’s part of my job.  But this is the fourth time he’s done this in as many weeks, and he’s never called me.  No call, no email, nothing all weekend.  He always says, “You’re around, right?  Going to need you.” Then no call.

Don’t get me wrong, I’m definitely not opposed to putting in long hours.  In fact, if straight-up given the choice to either “work” or “maybe work” a weekend, I would choose to work.  At least I would be billing hours and not sitting around my apartment for two days straight, holding my Blackberry like a warhead, and neither enjoying my weekend or actually working.  To me, “might” means there’s a decent chance he’ll actually need me, but I’m getting the impression this guy doesn’t need or want me on weekends.  He just wants to know that I’m waiting for his call (that never comes) and not having any fun in the meantime.  An annoying way to remind me that the firm always comes first.

My main problem is that this weekend I’m taking my girlfriend away for her birthday.  She’s been looking forward to it for weeks, and if I postpone the trip only to sit around the whole weekend for no reason, we might as well break up.  So I decide to get out in front of it.  I tell this ass clown I’m going to be out of town this weekend.  “Just giving you a heads up,” I say.  And he looks at me with a smug, disapproving grin and says, “Must be nice.”

Aahhh!  I want to kill this guy.  Must be nice?  I was ready to work each of the last four goddamn weekends!  And now I’m an undedicated asshole because I want to go away with my girlfriend this weekend?  It’s not like if I stayed put I’d actually have work to do.  Nor would he even know if I went out of town.  Can’t win!!!  Now I’m just another lazy schmuck who doesn’t want to work weekends.  Sweet.

Happy birthday, honey!

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7 Comments

  1. Bboy

    October 23, 2008 at 9:09 am

    Poor form on his part.  However, I see no reason for you to stay in your apartment all weekend for any of the past four weekends clutching the b’berry.  The benefit/curse of the b’berry is that you can… TAKE IT WITH YOU.  Though it may suck to have to duck out of a movie/dinner/bar mitzvah/funeral when you get “the call,” it’s MUCH less annoying than sitting in your apartment all weekend.

  2. Al Dickman

    October 23, 2008 at 5:18 pm

    The guy’s a putz.  He has a blackberry.  Use it.  And a cell phone?  Give that # out to the dickhead boss.  That will be good enough. Now go enjoy the girlfriend and take her away for her birthday, already.  Worst case is, you go back to work Monday with a smile on your face.

  3. denver rob

    October 23, 2008 at 9:57 pm

    this is frustrating and i’ve had to deal with this a time or two.  just because you have a blackberry doesn’t mean you can go out of town when you’re been told you might need to come in.  unless that blackberry transports you back to the office at a moment’s notice, you’re kind of screwed.  saw what happened to nick in the video about halloween.

  4. BSD

    October 24, 2008 at 5:25 am

    It’s called a laptop, works wonders for work and fantasy football.

  5. No Problem

    October 24, 2008 at 1:01 pm

    The next time he asks you to sit around all weekend & wait, just tell him you’re happy to & ask who to bill the time to.
    Not having any ability to do something because you have to wait on a client need around outside normal business hours makes it billable time.  You can’t be expected to make no weekend plans ever and to be available all the time, indefinitely, that’s absurd.  If you are being asked to wait around & not make plans on a weekend, it’s for a specific client, and it’s getting billed – get a no., and use it.

  6. who cares

    October 24, 2008 at 1:36 pm

    Get over it and tell him to blow himself.  he’ll have much more respect for you.  really…

  7. Loving California

    October 30, 2008 at 12:19 pm

    This is where NYC offices simply lose to California offices of the same firm. I just transferred from NY to LA (same firm), and the cultures are like night and day (respectively). Partners just understand and respect associates’ time out here. Working remotely is no big deal. It’s such a breath of fresh air, sometimes I cry a little.

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