Lawyer stories:
Careers, Courtroom Dramas & Columbo

Coming up to 7 years with LOD and on assignment number 8, LOD lawyer Jon Esson knows why he is still a lawyer, but has some unanswered questions about how he started in the first place. Find out why “the jury is still out”.

When Nadia (Venis, HQ Co-ordinator) invited me to write something for this month’s LOD lawyer blog, I asked what I should write about (and wondered who on earth would read it!). Nadia suggested doing something about what first inspired me to become a lawyer, which got me thinking about re-runs of crime-dramas from the 60’s, 70’s and 80’s, which I watched growing up. Many questions were raised. Had Raymond Burr’s portrayal of Perry Mason ‘inspired’ me to enter the legal profession? Did watching these TV shows in preference to the ones aired on the three other available channels set me on a path which would lead to the doors of the Law Society? If I had been a little more obsessed with Columbo, could I have ended up becoming an outwardly bumbling but surprisingly sharp-minded LA homicide detective?

After a few weeks thinking about this, I still don’t know the answers.

In all seriousness, whilst I don’t think Perry Mason made me become a lawyer, it might be that the job of a lawyer seemed a little less foreign to me growing up than it might have without such shows. Obviously the fact that what I do on a daily basis is a far cry from the lives of the courtroom lawyers portrayed on screen is neither here nor there.

In truth, I rather fell in to being a lawyer. Whilst doing my degree in law and politics, I started properly thinking about careers for the first time. The 22 year-old me saw this as a straight choice and even then I didn’t think much of politicians, so law seemed the obvious way to go. Plus, it meant an extra year (at Law School) to adjust to the idea of working for a living.

Without wanting to bring the mood down, for a long time after this point, my settled view was that the 22 year-old me had dropped a bit of a clanger. I don’t remember seeing Perry Mason pulling all-nighters to turn around the next draft of an outsourcing agreement for an over-bearing partner or the lead characters in L.A. Law spending 3 hours of their Saturdays on a conference call discussing limitations of liability.

Anyway. Thank goodness for LOD. I don’t do that stuff anymore. Or, at least, if I do, it’s my choice, I get paid extra for it and somebody says thank you. Whilst the jury is still out (everyone’s entitled to one pun) on what inspired me to get into the law, I can certainly say that LOD is the reason I’m still doing it.

As Columbo would say, just one more thing….February is the shortest month of the year; I hope you enjoy it.

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