life in and around NYC is insane

Thursday, November 13, 2008

business "trip"

So today I got to suit up at head over to corporate headquarters for an all-day training class in negotiation skills and techniques. You'd think, after 20+years in this business, i may have already developed a few negotiation techniques...but whatever, I don't mind spending a day in the Wall Street office. And if you want to give me CE credit for my various and sundry adjusters' licenses, that's fine with me -- extra fine if you also include some CLE for my law license.

so we did a little role playing in order to perfect our techniques and I was cast in the role of irate claimant with a twisted ankle who desperately wants a monetary settlement with the insurance company.

and afterwards, the guy who played the insurance adjuster told me I was terrific in the part of the claimant. and I explained: method acting.

back in 1995, I was on a business trip to Philly, I was there to attend mediation sessions and to settle cases I was working on. Since I would be there for several days, the company booked a room for me at a lovely hotel downtown, not too far from the Liberty Bell. the hotel is built on a hill, and the lobby is slightly below street level. when you come in from the sidewalk there's a single step down. the gift shop is at street level, with one entrance from the sidewalk and a second entrance from the lobby, with a single step up to the store.

well, I must have stepped up when I entered the store, but after I purchased souvenirs for the kidlets I was distracted, and completely forgot about the step when I went back down to the lobby.

and got up close and personal with the white marble floor.

my first thought: what on earth just happened?

my second thought: I hope no one saw me make a fool of myself.

I kept telling them I was fine as they helped me to the chair. it wasn't until my right foot hit the bucket of ice that I realized I'd killed my ankle.

so the manager came over to fill out the accident report. and I noticed, for the first time, that there was a door separating the gift shop from the lobby. there was a sign on the door that said "please watch your step." the sign could not be seen because the door was propped open. I said to the manager, "the door is open, I didn't see the sign."

and he told the salesperson in the store to CLOSE THE DOOR!!!!

and then I said "I feel so embarrassed, I can't believe I did this."

and he said "don't worry, ma'am, several other people have done the very same thing."

that's when I felt the gears shift from "humiliated" to "I am about to earn my law school tuition."

never, never, NEVER tell a lawyer tha you had prior notice of a dangerous and defective condition at your premises.

I limped all over Philly for two days, did my job, and got back on the Amtrak to come back to NY. didn't go home, went to my chiropractor instead, because all that limping did a number on my herniated disc. Joe took one look at my purple foot and then we walked (or rather, he walked and I limped) aoross the hall to his colleague the podiatrist. the podiatrist put my foot in a soft cast for two weeks. and I had to wear an ace bandage for two months.

I hd a friend in Philly, a lawyer who had been a podiatrist before he came over to the dark side. I asked his advice.

and I used the settlement to take my kidlets to Disneyworld.


Grandy said...

You didn't have to fall to play the role of irate claimant. I can be sympathetic with those that are truly hurt. It's the whiny babies with their loss of consortium claims that tick me OFF.

P.S. I could write a novel on all the places Grandy has fallen. ;)

Suzanne said...

You know I'm clumsy, the 8th dwarf, but that one tops any of mine!

Grandy, I love the loss of consortium-like you can prove that one way or the other. I didn't want to answer that question on the SSDI application because so many people use that in cases!

songbird's crazy world said...

LOL, I am a bit of a klutz. I've been known to take a fall or two on the ice, on my driveway...and laugh at myself because you're supposed to fall on someone else's driveway!

a legal comment -- loss of consortium is really much broader than what goes on in the bedroom...example, the wife used to cook dinner, clean the house, take care of the kids, but now she's a paparplegic and cant' do any of those tasks, and husband has to hire someone to do those things......but sex is part of the imagine some 22 year old kid just out of law school deposing a plaintiff on a consortium claim and having to ask "those" questions without dying of embarassment.

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