Next to Justice, I Like Winning Best.

Matlock said that. matlockx-large

I like winning. I like winning a lot.

In my “day” job, I’m a litigation attorney. After doing court appointed work representing indigent accused earlier in my career, a noble job by the way, I figured out pretty quick that getting laughed at by prosecutors and cops was a drag.

Attorneys have a very clear idea about who the good guys are and who the bad guys are and I wanted to be a good guy. Mind you, I have nothing but respect for those who choose to defend the indigent accused. Spending one’s weekends visiting jails is a drag. The people you meet are often not very uplifting creatures. And the pay is awful.

One of my major shortcomings is that I like being the good guy. And so I worked in different areas of law, mostly in sole practice where I had no one but myself, the IRS, a ton of creditors and my kids to answer to, but I have learned that you don’t have to sell your soul to practice law. You can work the kinds of cases that you feel good about and make money too. Maybe not as much money as when you sell your soul but the trade off is worth it.

Nowadays I represent injured employees who have been treated unfairly by workers compensation insurance companies. And I do love winning those cases. So much so that Ifist-pump blog on my attorney website about it, post this little man, repost it on Facebook and then boost the post. I know for a fact insurance adjusters follow my FB page and so I am sending them a very direct message.

Because I love to gloat.

There is only one downside with owning your wins is that you have to own your losses too. Or you develop a zen-kind of philosophy that you not your wins or losses, that you are a human being — as are those sad insurance defense attorneys and adjusters I beat — and what I do is what I do, not what I am.

I’m sure I’m not alone. I bet you like to gloat too. Admit it. It feels good when you find an incorrect charge on your credit card and you’re successful in having it removed. Or when you dispute a traffic ticket and win. Or when you talk down a car dealer on his price or negotiate a favorable price for buying or selling your house. Or an agent signs you. Or a publisher signs you. Or you win a writing prize. Or your short story gets picked up.  Don’t you tell everyone you know? Because we’re only human.

And vindication feels oh so good. Better than chocolate.

What about you? What wins are you most proud of?



16 thoughts on “Next to Justice, I Like Winning Best.”

  1. Keenan, you are so right. As human beings we love to win. I’ve savored each of my short story acceptances, and each rejection felt like punch to the gut.

    But the win that ticked me most had nothing to do with writing. When I go to th office, I park in a lot and it costs $8 ($1/hour). I pay with a little app on my phone. One day as I walked to the office, someone stopped me and asked if I knew what was wrong with the computerized meters; they seemed to be down. I wondered if the parking lot machine was down, but no worries – I had paid on my phone. Sure enough, I get to my car that afternoon and I have a parking ticket, timestamped one hour after I paid. Oh no you don’t! I filed a grievance, emailed a screen shot of the app on my phone and a PDF of my email acknowledgement.

    They overturned the ticket. I beat The Man! 🙂

    Liked by 3 people

  2. I’m trying to think of an example and I’m coming up short. I must’ve won something gloatable. Well, when I was 24 years old, I bought my first apartment — a studio in Hoboken. I initially lost the bid. This was the bubble and a sellers market and people were bidding well over asking. Anyway, through early Googling, I got a fax number for the owners. I wrote a sincere letter asking if they could accept my bid. That it was the most I could afford, but that I wanted the apartment. And it worked! I got a phone call from my real estate agent that the owners accepted my offer. I wasn’t even sure they had gotten my fax. I don’t know if that’s winning, but it sure felt great.

    Liked by 4 people

  3. Great post, Keenan! I love winning, so much so that I can get overly competitive if I’m not careful 🙂 One win I’ll always cherish was winning a local short story contest. It was the third time I had entered and I worked super hard on my entry. Sweet vindication!

    Liked by 2 people

  4. Oh, great post! I will have to think on an example, but I definitely like to win. Especially over someone or some entity acting like a complete asshat. That’s just delicious. And now, I must think on how to add this to my WIP, because I’m loving this concept.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. Your post made me think of the new season of Suits. Mike has a deal with Harvey that he’ll be able to take pro bono cases… the kind of law he really wants to pursue. And then I thought of my granddaughter who is a highly paid attorney working in international finance who loved a summer internship position she had working with immigration law, and the people impacted by the vagaries afforded different countries.

    I tend not to gloat, at least outwardly. God likes to keep me humble. But between us, I love winning at mah jongg, canasta, and getting sweet reviews. Back in the day I felt satisfied when I could put a mortgage loan together where others had failed. And I love it when I can create a meal where guests talk about wanting to do a face-plant on their plates.

    Well done!

    Liked by 1 person

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