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In-house Access Insight & Commentary for In-House Counsel Worldwide

Commuter Life: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly

Posted in ACC Docket

(May/2013)

I get to my job at ACC via a commuter train. Most of the people I ride with work for the government, hospitals and nonprofits. Some of them are contractors; others are military personnel. I spend three hours commuting, round trip. If you see me tweeting at o’dark-thirty ET, this is why.

In my seven years of making this trek, I have observed many things that people apparently think are acceptable to do on a commuter train:

  • clip their fingernails,
  • put on a full face of makeup,
  • take off their shoes,
  • talk loudly on a cell or log-in to a conference call,
  • talk the entire ride to a passenger across the aisle,
  • eat their fast food meal,
  • sing,
  • have a laptop open while playing poker, and
  • block other people from getting off the train.

I know a passenger who received a black eye after another passenger clocked her while getting off the train to go home. Another was pushed off the train at her stop because the person behind her did not think she was moving fast enough. Did I mention that this is the same stop where commuters run and hurdle over shrubs in order to get their cars? I know that fellow commuters who ride mass transit have other stories to tell. Traveling with masses of people in a confined space can often bring out the worst in people, it seems. The words of my wise mother still ring true: It takes all kinds to make the world go around.

But, as we witnessed in the responses to last week’s bombing of the Boston Marathon, the good in humanity can still rise up from horrible circumstances. Like the crème you first pour into the cup, the good in people always makes it to the top.

I suspect that it is hard as well to see the good in humanity when you are in litigation. While we cannot change the humanity you witness during a case, we hope to provide indispensible information that you can use to better manage your litigation. The focus of this month’s ACC Docket is litigation management. It’s also the first issue to offer our expanded our digital-only offerings.

In keeping with our new Docket tagline, we hope you find that this issue keeps you informed and indispensable to your organization.