Worthy of a Loser
There was a certain anger in me that proved to be my motivation. It kept me work an extra two-three hours the day before the court hearings and walk through the thick and thin of the ever changing weather, down and up through downtown. But the most important part of my involvement in this regards was the "F***!! I am not giving up that easily" feeling of confidence. It made me contact a few notable business and law faculty and their students and made new friends. Eventually, I learned the fact that knowing your law is important. Interestingly I spent more time in the law library, both in the university and in the district court, reading through dockets than the sum of all time I spent in any library, in my life, ever :D.
Today I had my second hearing in the morning. The first 10 minutes was a disaster with the opponent attorney coming up with all the jargoned reasons, which I had no clue of how to handle. Thanks to my forging attempts to keep the case open unlike most other defendants, I was offered a question. Ceasing the opportunity, I submitted an evidence of a photograph, which I took using my i-phone for a twitter update as a joke (I used this a month and a half before, to re-open the case and null my garnishment and the previous judgement). The trigger had been pressed and I went full fledged into the discrepancies of the case. 20 minutes later (And most idiots told me that no civil case goes more than 15 minutes in a single hearing), I gave a copy of a handwritten calculation that had formulae of simple interest and compound interest. Math anxiety or not, I had to explain the whole purpose of that calculation to the honorable judge (Hey, she respected my attempts and took her time to understand the calculations). More discrepancies. Finally, the judge leaned on my side. She started working on the final judgement summary.
The opponent attorney looked at me in despise and started playing around with more jargons. Had I given to his act, I would have lost (coz the judge started to talk with him in his own slang, and believe me or not, she looked like switching sides). But, I stopped the judge and said, "Pardon me for my rudeness Ma'am. Let me say this clear! I am entitled to pay a certain amount to the plaintiff, which I was ready to pay in 07. We can get that proof from the monitored recorded phone conversations. It was entirely their mistake with regards to whatever the case is currently on. Frankly saying, I do want to pay them off the money I owe them. And I am ready to do so in monthly instalments, starting right away. Being a PhD student, I do not have the money to hire an attorney or the time to drag the case. But I did spend time on this case, since I believed that justice was on my side. And as per me, justice in this regards is paying them only the money I owe."
When I said 'touched' in the first statement of the post, I did not just say it. I meant it. The judge looked at me, asked a few more simple questions, smiled and said, "Sir... Take your blackberry or whatever you have and do this calculation". Her smile broadened with a slight sound as I took my scientific calculator from the bag and waited for the instructions. Two minutes later, the display blurted out a certain number that was at least 35% less than what I owe (Heck! I saved about 75% if I had lost the case). A few words of wisdom was shared by the judge (which was mostly on informing me that I shouldn't be honest on all circumstances) and of course there were some snarls from the attorney.
As the cold chilly snow hit my face 5 minutes later, I felt a burden off my shoulder. I felt warm. Above all, I felt 'Worth the effort!'
Nearly, half a day later, I looked at my bank balance. Fortunately for my opinions on money and it's role in life, I am not sad. Unfortunately, the fact that I have lived on the edge of finance all my PhD career, since I cared does not bring any happy feelings. Somehow this feeling is creeping its way into the bucket of "How come a certain distance occurs and grows between me and the people I care the most?"
For the first time I am having doubts of pursuing a road that leads to my career goal instead of the one that roofs in with money. Should my motivation be anger or confidence? I don't know. All I feel from inside is, at times, there is a certain L on my forehead..... L:-|