Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

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The Valkyrie
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Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby The Valkyrie » Tue Jul 26, 2011 1:01 pm

So I've been looking for a job since about April, when I got laid off from my previous post at a family law firm. It's getting pretty tough so I'm trying to get creative.

I made up some business cards with my picture and kind of a miniature resume on them (Vista Print). It has my contact info, degrees, and then it says "Two Years Litigation Experience
Former Paralegal
Hardworking, Experienced Researcher"

I had also applied for an ADA job in the next county over. Yesterday I put on my best (only) seersucker suit and drove out there, hoping to run into the guy who interviewed me. I got there around 12:30 and figured it would be lunchtime. The deputies working security told me that everyone was out to lunch and wouldnt be back until 2:00 pm. (!) Another reason why I want this job - their lunch breaks are no bullshit.

So I moseyed up to the DA's office and tried to get a little bit of info from the receptionist. She was very sweet and told me that they were still conducting interviews and that no decision has been made yet. That warmed my heart a little. I figured I would hand out my "business" cards to the local firms. This is in a town that has a large square around the courthouse, with literally two dozen law offices and a place called the "Barrister's Bar" or whatever. So I walked in, hat in hand, to a couple of these places and just dropped off my card. Most of the time, there was no one in sight, so I just left it on the desk for the secretary/receptionist to find. There were a couple other places where they took my card with a smile. Then I get to the Law Offices of F.J. Worthington (name changed).

This appears to be a solo attorney. The office is upstairs in a rickety old building. The stairs were sketchy - I felt like every footfall on these bad boys was going to lead to me plunging through and getting stuck. I've never heard so much creaking in my life, and I've walked up my fair share of stairs. The top of the stairs dumps you into the lobby, which had some 1970s furniture, that ugly cheap carpet, and some Reader's Digests and Golf Magazines from the late 90s. There appeared to be a receptionist's desk behind glass, a bit like a movie theater, complete with that metal disc that you're supposed to converse through. There was no one manning said area, however. There was an open door to an office, which looked about 500% nicer than the rest of the space. I took a sideways glance inside. There was a well-dressed dude in his late 30s early 40s I would guess in there - poring over some documents. I assumed that this was FJ Worthington himself. He had his door open, and I had my cards in my hand, so I decided to just go for it.

I knock on the doorframe lightly. The guy's neck snaps up and his eyes meet mine. It was maybe one of the most intense looks I've ever been given. He had ice-blue eyes and I felt like they were boring holes into my skull. I launched into my pitch before missing a beat.

"Sir, my name is The Valkyrie, and I'm an attorney looking for a new opportunity. If you would take a look at my card, I'd love to speak with you about any work you know of that's available." I plopped my card down on his desk and took a step back. I did not expect what came next.

"Wait...just...a second...young man." From his tone, I knew I was in trouble. I wanted to run (carefully) down the stairs and get away, but I felt rooted to the 20th century carpet like a tree. His look somehow became even more intense, and I was practically transfixed.

"I'm not even going to look at this card. Do you know why?"

"No?" was what I managed to squeek out.

"Because what you just did is nothing but unprofessional. I'm in here trying to do real work for real clients, and the last thing I need to deal with is someone like you barging in here and begging for a job. Do you have any idea how unprofessional that is?"

I stammered something, can't remember what, probably not a coherent phrase or sentence.

"SHUT UP! You got a lot of nerve to burst in here and then start talking back to me, young man. Did you see the 'No Soliciting' sign out there?" The guy was roaring at this point. "You know how to read, don't you? Now you need to get the hell out of my office. You know where the door is."

The guy didn't blink the whole time. I took my throat-lump and walked back down the stairs. I was halfway down the flight when I heard him shout after me.

"Don't you trespass in here ever again!" I stopped right there and tried to absorb the mental blow. It was a bit like getting yelled at when you're a little kid, and you're not ready for it. You just stop in your tracks and try to process what just happened.

I went back to my car and cried a little.

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Helmholtz
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby Helmholtz » Tue Jul 26, 2011 1:03 pm

what is this i don't even

Aston2412
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby Aston2412 » Tue Jul 26, 2011 1:09 pm

I can't tell if this is a joke or not...

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The Valkyrie
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby The Valkyrie » Tue Jul 26, 2011 1:14 pm

Aston2412 wrote:I can't tell if this is a joke or not...


that's not a joke. THIS is a joke:

A man moved in next to a Hillbilly. The Hillbilly comes over and knocks on the door. The guy answers.

"Howdy neighbor!" says the Hillbilly. "In honor of you movin to the holler, I'm fixin to throw a big ol' party! There's gonna be a whole lotta drinkin, a whole lotta dancin, and a whole lotta screwin!"

"Sounds great!" says the neighbor. "What should I bring?"

"Well shoot," says the Hillbilly. "You don't gotta bring nothin! It's just gonna be you and me!"

Aston2412
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby Aston2412 » Tue Jul 26, 2011 1:23 pm

The Valkyrie wrote:
Aston2412 wrote:I can't tell if this is a joke or not...


that's not a joke. THIS is a joke:

A man moved in next to a Hillbilly. The Hillbilly comes over and knocks on the door. The guy answers.

"Howdy neighbor!" says the Hillbilly. "In honor of you movin to the holler, I'm fixin to throw a big ol' party! There's gonna be a whole lotta drinkin, a whole lotta dancin, and a whole lotta screwin!"

"Sounds great!" says the neighbor. "What should I bring?"

"Well shoot," says the Hillbilly. "You don't gotta bring nothin! It's just gonna be you and me!"


NF;DL.

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Rock-N-Roll
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby Rock-N-Roll » Tue Jul 26, 2011 1:46 pm

Valkyrie, if that story really happened to you, that does suck. But the uptick of that story seems to be that you're clearly hustling to find work after losing your position as opposed to floundering, which I think is a very good thing.

I think a good way to look at that incident might be to see that it would have been absolute misery to work for someone like that anyway. I believe he was in the wrong to speak to you that way and it was he and not you who was unprofessional.

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The Valkyrie
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby The Valkyrie » Tue Jul 26, 2011 1:48 pm

Rock-N-Roll wrote:Valkyrie, if that story really happened to you, that does suck. But the uptick of that story seems to be that you're clearly hustling to find work after losing your position as opposed to floundering, which I think is a very good thing.

I think a good way to look at that incident might be to see that it would have been absolute misery to work for someone like that anyway. I believe he was in the wrong to speak to you that way and it was he and not you who was unprofessional.


Agreed. I've dealt with some unpleasant people in my time, but I think that guy was the worst. Maybe he was having a really bad day, but shit man, if you don't want to deal with people in the lobby, shut the dadgum door!

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SilverE2
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby SilverE2 » Tue Jul 26, 2011 2:04 pm

You should probably stay away from creative writing from now on.

2.5/10

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Helmholtz
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby Helmholtz » Tue Jul 26, 2011 2:06 pm

SilverE2 wrote:You should probably stay away from creative writing from now on.

2.5/10


too generous

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Rock-N-Roll
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby Rock-N-Roll » Tue Jul 26, 2011 2:09 pm

Helmholtz wrote:
SilverE2 wrote:You should probably stay away from creative writing from now on.

2.5/10


too generous


I'm not saying anything about the authenticity of the OP's story (because who knows if it's true or not), but it's just sad that flameing is so prevalent on this site that most people just assume that a story like that has to be made up.

Aston2412
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby Aston2412 » Tue Jul 26, 2011 2:14 pm

Rock-N-Roll wrote:
Helmholtz wrote:
SilverE2 wrote:You should probably stay away from creative writing from now on.

2.5/10


too generous


I'm not saying anything about the authenticity of the OP's story (because who knows if it's true or not), but it's just sad that flameing is so prevalent on this site that most people just assume that a story like that has to be made up.


That's what I did.

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The Valkyrie
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby The Valkyrie » Tue Jul 26, 2011 2:16 pm

isn't flame meant to get a rise out of people? this is just something that happened to me yesterday.

I'm thinking about going back to the DA's office and just hanging around everyday. It's not like I have anything to do (well, except for watching friday night lights on netflix, and I'm already into season 5).

In the county where I live, their newest ADA was hired because he showed up, told them he wanted to work there, and asked to shadow/help out any way he could. They hired him after a couple weeks. Who knows, maybe that could be me. The more I think about it, the more I really want the prosecutor job. I also applied for a GAL attorney advocate job, which I'm also excited about, but I dont think im going to be considered. Sent in my stuff like 2 weeks ago and havent heard anything - but hey, I don't know how slowly the gears turn over there. I've got mad volunteer experience working with kids and I know the juvenile code, plus I did mostly child custody...I don't know, thought it would be a good fit. I'm not crazy about the idea of working at a civil law firm again, but of course I'll take what I can get at this point.

SchopenhauerFTW
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby SchopenhauerFTW » Tue Jul 26, 2011 2:25 pm

It's nice to know that there's so much to look forward to.

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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jul 26, 2011 2:30 pm

The Valkyrie wrote:isn't flame meant to get a rise out of people? this is just something that happened to me yesterday.

I'm thinking about going back to the DA's office and just hanging around everyday. It's not like I have anything to do (well, except for watching friday night lights on netflix, and I'm already into season 5).

In the county where I live, their newest ADA was hired because he showed up, told them he wanted to work there, and asked to shadow/help out any way he could. They hired him after a couple weeks. Who knows, maybe that could be me. The more I think about it, the more I really want the prosecutor job. I also applied for a GAL attorney advocate job, which I'm also excited about, but I dont think im going to be considered. Sent in my stuff like 2 weeks ago and havent heard anything - but hey, I don't know how slowly the gears turn over there. I've got mad volunteer experience working with kids and I know the juvenile code, plus I did mostly child custody...I don't know, thought it would be a good fit. I'm not crazy about the idea of working at a civil law firm again, but of course I'll take what I can get at this point.


Be careful with the volunteering though. I know a volunteer PD in Maryland who's been volunteering for several years now and they still haven't hired her. She summered with a V70 too but let them know at the end that she wanted to do PI work. She still doesn't have permanent employment.

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The Valkyrie
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby The Valkyrie » Tue Jul 26, 2011 2:31 pm

why would she keep working there for free now that it's clear that they aren't going to hire her? that just seems a bit foolish, no offense.

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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby Anonymous User » Tue Jul 26, 2011 2:36 pm

The Valkyrie wrote:why would she keep working there for free now that it's clear that they aren't going to hire her? that just seems a bit foolish, no offense.



I think Maryland's on a PD list-system. You're hired relative to your position on the list. It's just that many people want the job.

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The Valkyrie
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby The Valkyrie » Tue Jul 26, 2011 2:37 pm

I see. yeah, that's crazy. PD jobs are in very high demand from what I understand.

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tww909
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby tww909 » Tue Jul 26, 2011 2:40 pm

this thread is shit compared to areyouinsane

shoeshine
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby shoeshine » Tue Jul 26, 2011 2:41 pm

What state do you live in?

azntwice
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby azntwice » Tue Jul 26, 2011 2:42 pm

Sorry to hear that Valkyrie, but I'm glad that you are still looking and haven't given up yet. Like the other poster, I also think this man's behavior was uncalled-for and slightly crazy. Best of luck to you!!

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BackToTheOldHouse
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby BackToTheOldHouse » Tue Jul 26, 2011 2:44 pm

SilverE2 wrote:You should probably stay away from only do creative writing from now on.

2.5 9.5/10


FTFY

I want to read another story from The Valkyrie tomorrow. Maybe it could be about you going back to this guy's office and egging his car?

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RaleighStClair
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby RaleighStClair » Tue Jul 26, 2011 3:07 pm

The Valkyrie wrote:I've never heard so much creaking in my life, and I've walked up my fair share of stairs.


I lawl'd. This story cannot be real.

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The Valkyrie
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby The Valkyrie » Tue Jul 26, 2011 3:30 pm

BackToTheOldHouse wrote:
SilverE2 wrote:You should probably stay away from only do creative writing from now on.

2.5 9.5/10


FTFY

I want to read another story from The Valkyrie tomorrow. Maybe it could be about you going back to this guy's office and egging his car?


HA! Not even thinking about it. That guy was unhinged.

If you want to hear another story, I'll tell you the one about how I lost my last jerb.

So I graduated slightly below median from a southern tier one school. I was class of 2009 and hiring had just fallen off a cliff, so it was tough to get anything, even an interview. I applied for a few jobs in the state where my school was, but other than one callback interview, didn't have any luck at all.

A couple family members were having health issues, and I figured if there was anywhere I could get a job, it would be in or near my hometown, so I moved back after graduation.

I got a job through a mutual friend with a well-respected small divorce firm. The pay was ok, it had health insurance, and it was in a ridiculously nice office space (more on that later). Considering how brutal it was out there, I was happy as a pig in shit.

So this firm is run by a tough old lesbian in her 60s, who I'll call Managing Partner. She's a real ballbuster, which is kind of why she's so sought after. She's also a really, really good lawyer, and I relished the opportunity to learn family law from her since she had been doing it (and doing it well) for more than 30 years.

I plug away for about a year and a half, learning the biz and doing mostly child custody and child support. The work was ok, but dealing with the clients was tough, as most of them acted like spoiled brats. When its not just your money on the line in a lawsuit, but rather your children & your money & your opponent is someone you have very strong love/hate feelings for, reason flies out the window. That's my hypothesis anyway. Well, about a year into the job I hear some rumblings about business and how it's not doing so hot. Basically, clients had stopped paying us due to the downturn, we were carrying WAY too many divorcing housewives with absolutely no liquid income, and we were not collecting on unpaid balances effectively (like, at all).

Furthermore, any effort to cut costs was swiftly smacked down by Managing Partner. When I joined the firm, we had new business cards printed up. The office manager (a really nice and put-upon guy who had been there for years) came into the morning meeting and brought the issue up. The cards were cream-colored with blue writing and one crimson dot in the middle, as kind of a separator between the bits of blue-inked information. He said that adding a second color to the printing would increase the cost per card by about 50%, and these were already expensive cards. Managing Partner is one of those types who always has to have the finest, most expensive things. This is true of food (especially), office furniture, everything. She bought a $15,000 conference table from DWR, which never saw any real use. Anyway, he tells her this about the cards, and asks her "how important is this little red dot? we could literally save hundreds of dollars without it."

"Extremely important," says Managing Partner, leaning forward in her Herman Mueller Aeron chair.

That kind of sums up her entire philosophy towards business. So in October of last year, things really got tight. We were in danger of not being able to make overhead. Everyone was billing sufficiently, but we had a ton of clients who couldn't/didn't pay us regularly and we had all these huge (talking 6 figure) balances from old Gayby cases and whatnot. Meanwhile, we're in a Taj Mahal of an office that is way too big for a firm with a total complement of 16. So after a few months of hemming and hawing, Managing Partner hires a "business efficiency expert," which was some 75-year old dude she knew who was a CPA. He charged her $75,000 just to tell her she needs to reduce overhead and fire people. Thanks, grandpa!

As the low associate on the totem pole, my case load mostly consisted of our "problem" clients. These were people who didn't like to pay or were just too annoying for her to deal with in most cases. Most of the time these were referrals from her personal friends who she didnt want to turn away, but were not very good quality clients/cases. One guy owed us $45,000 for a long custody case (which we won) and he was paying $100 a month. Another was a severe alcoholic. She came from money and had a family name, which is why we were involved (Managing Partner loved to be a player in local society). This woman would drink herself nearly to death on the reg. We even paid for a SCRAM ankle monitor bracelet for her in an effort to keep her clean so she could see her kids. This was not cheap - about 3k/year. With a caseload like this, it was easy to see that my salary would be struck from the budget and I would be out on my ass. Or so I thought.

In february, Managing Partner and I go out to lunch. I figured that this is where it ends and I braced myself. Instead, she spoke candidly with me and told me I was doing a great job, especially considering the position I was in with my clients. She told me that for the past couple years, she was billing around $400,000 per annum, but had rarely paid herself a salary in an effort to preserve overhead. I was floored. Before I could wonder too much about how poorly this business was being run, she told me that I shouldn't worry about my job.

"Listen," she said. "I'm getting older, and I can't bill as much as I did before. We are going to be making some changes at the firm, but I want you to know that although I'm going to cut back on working so much, I'm going to be focusing mainly on your cases and helping you with them. So you and I are going to work closely together so I can teach you and get you up to a better caseload."

I was ecstatic. Instead of getting fired, Managing Partner tells me that she's going to tagteam my cases with me, teach me up, and get to a point where I can really fly on my own. Not only that, but we're cutting staff, so there will be less frantic scrambling to make overhead. I figure that I have a future at the firm and I'm really happy about that.

Then, Managing Partner just disappears. Not coming into work. We hear she's at home working on "the business aspects" of the firm. I thought it was a little odd, but I just kept my head down and worked, holding onto our previous conversation like a rabbit's foot, hoping everything works out.

I didn't speak to Managing Partner for two months after our little lunch. This may sound strange, but this woman is impossible to get ahold of. She does not use email (nor computers at all), she has no voicemail (we had to handwrite messages and literally give them to her), no cellphone, and she doesnt have a home answering machine. Of course she thought her luddite-ness was fucking adorable, but it really just made it a hassle to deal with her. So I'm a bit surprised when, in April, she tells me she wants to go out for lunch.

We go to the same place we went before. We sit at the same table. She tells me that she's letting me go; that the firm just doesn't have enough money to pay my salary and insurance anymore. It was like the previous conversation had never happened. I tried not to, but I cried a little. I told her I really thought I was part of the future at Law Firm. She told me they had enough money to pay me through the end of the month. I asked about severance, but she said that collecting unemployment would be more money than any severance package she could put together. whatever.

The following monday I had my first day as an official dead man walking. I was always well-liked at this place, and had a good relationship with the lawyers and the staff. But after getting canned, the congeniality came to a screeching halt. People spoke to me in muted tones with their head cocked to the side, as if I just lost a baby or something. I was charged with writing letters to all of my clients, explaining to them what had happened, and letting them know that Managing Partner would be handling their case from now on. It took me a week to do this and get my office cleaned out and my files organized. When I was done, I told my boss that I was all set and that I'd miss working there, and take care and all of that.

She glared at me. "I'm paying you to be here until the end of the month. I expect you to be here until the end of the month." Wonderful. Her expression softened and she continued. "And I want to do this properly! We need to all go out and have lunch at Fancy Restaurant. I'm not letting you leave without a proper sendoff."

Are you fucking kidding me? I have to actually go out and celebrate this with everyone? I couldnt think of anything more awkward.

So I spend the rest of the month sitting around, twiddling my thumbs, and fielding calls from crazy clients who can't get ahold of Managing Partner. She schedules the lunch for a Friday, my last day. Instead of showing up to the office beforehand, I went to Fancy Grocery Store (adjacent to Fancy Restaurant) and bought some Fancy Beer. I put the beer into a foam cup from a nearby pizza place and walk around, drinking and trying to get ready for the weirdest lunch of my life.

So the time comes and we sit down. About half of the lawyers show up, the rest sending lame excuses. No staff comes except for one. I was pretty offended at first, but I learned later that people avoided it just because they knew how awkward it was going to be.

I order a beer and the most expensive thing on the menu, but it's lunch, so that didn't quite have the "FUCK YOU!" effect I was going for. After the meal and some uncomfortable conversation, Managing Partner clinks her glass and makes a "speech." I put "speech" in quotation marks because all she really said was something like:

"Parting is such sweet sorrow. It's been a good two years."

She then hands me a square, gift-wrapped box. Great. A parting gift. I open it to find this mug:



--ImageRemoved--

inside, there was a bag of chocolates.

"Now, with these chocolates," says Managing Partner, "you can't eat them like Hershey's Kisses. This is the good stuff, so act accordingly."

"Act accordingly" was one of her favorite things to say. I wanted to leap across the table, break a glass, and jam it into her neck. You're firing me after telling me I wouldnt be fired, and then you have the nerve to admonish me to appreciate this fucking chocolate?

I almost started crying right then and there (I know from my posts it seems like I cry a lot, but this has just been a tough time). I thought better of it and was gracious and said thank you. As soon as it was remotely appropriate to do so, I left, bought some 24 oz malt liquor cans, and drank myself stupid.
Last edited by The Valkyrie on Tue Jul 26, 2011 3:37 pm, edited 1 time in total.

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gwuorbust
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby gwuorbust » Tue Jul 26, 2011 3:34 pm

the fuck

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Kilpatrick
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Re: Lookin' for a job with The Valkyrie

Postby Kilpatrick » Tue Jul 26, 2011 3:37 pm

Good story. You're like a gentler, poor man's areyouinsane. Except you cry a lot.




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