As I've mentioned before, I used to be a lawyer.
Yes, I practiced for four years and wound up shutting down my office in February 1999 to go back into journalism. I haven't set foot in a courtroom since July 1999 when I had a jury trial (which I won).
For the past few years, I've been a public relations guy and have been thinking about reactivating my Arkansas law license. Why? I'm watching PR guys get cut loose right and left in this wonderful economy and I believe in being prepared.
By the way, I've got all the paperwork to reactivate that license and I figure I might just go through all the steps. The tell me at the Arkansas Supreme Court that I'll have no problem getting my license back, in fact.
I asked them if I could get my money back if it didn't work, and I was told not to worry "unless I'd gotten a bunch of DWIs, had a felony record or something." I've mostly raised kids and worked since I quit practicing law, so no problem there.
Believe it or not, I did a fair job as an attorney most of the time. I would be lying if I said I didn't miss being a swaggering, loud-mouthed bully at least a little bit. I don't, however, miss the long hours, beating money out of people who assumed they could let my bill slide because I was rich (not true at all -- I brought home $150 some weeks) and generally dealing with people who were going through the most traumatic times of their lives.
Never again will I, The Hawg, make my living as a "street lawyer" taking in every case that wanders through the door. I'm too damned old and too damned tired for that kind of life.
At the same time, however, I'm about to hit 40-years-old and that's advanced enough to appear to have some wisdom, yet young enough to do something wacky and get away with it. To that end, I may use my reactivated law degree to fulfill a lifelong ambition -- to be ... The Singing Judge!
Oh, yeah. I could assume the role of Judge The Hawg and host a weekly variety/comedy show which features yuks aplenty and an occasional song by me. Think of it as a bit of throwback to the days of old time radio or the earlier days of television.
Just think of, say, the old Burns & Allen radio show. George Burns and Gracie Allen would do their bit, pause for a song and then go back into the show again. Burns and Allen provided that lightening-quick comedy, see, but a big deal was always made of the song.
It'd be the same thing with my singing judge show. Yes, people would tune in to catch up on their favorite wacky characters around the courthouse such as me, Marjorie the case coordinator (who would be a hot redhead, of course), Sally the bailiff (who would be based on my wife -- ex-Army, tough as nails and cute as a button) and those wacky defendants who would come before me.
And what comedy would be complete without a nemesis? My sworn enemy would be Judge Scoundrel, a weasel that I would constantly refer to as "his dishonor." We could constantly play mean spirited tricks on each other (gavel theft, stealing the bailiffs bullets -- those kinds of hijinks) and I would constantly try to get him removed from the bench.
Then, of course, you'd have the big song in the middle of the show. Picture this, people. Judge The Hawg calls a recess and everyone leaves the courtroom. The lights would go dim, leaving me to sing a great ballad such as "I'm Guilty of Lovin' You" or "I Sentence You to Love Without Parole."
I wouldn't sing all ballads, of course. How about a cover of Warren Zevon's "Disorder in the House" (modified to "Disorder in the Court") or an original called "The Lusty Juror?" Fun, fun.
And on that Zevon song, you'd better believe I'd want Bruce Springsteen to play guitar, just like he did on the original. He'd be the special guest that week, see, as a defendant charged with something zany. And, no, he wouldn't be allowed to pop off about his weird politics.
Look for my dandy show on a network near you!