Volume 9, Issue 2
Ockham’s razor dictates that in selecting the solution to a problem, the simplest such solution ought to be preferred. Now, there’s a razor you could shave your proverbials with. It’s something I like to think I wield well in the quest to vanquish my own little frissons.
So, positioned snuggly in the smug sense of security offered by one of the firm’s ‘presentations’ (an initiating ritual indoctrinating one as to the corporate beast’s views *cough* a chance to come to know the culture and activities of the firm), I felt ready to bring the sharpened edge of old Ockham to bear. Diary, I was mistaken!
The context, diary, was thus: a charming woman responsible for the firm’s efforts in regards to sustainable practices was rolled out to give us the four hundred and eleven on their smorgasbord of sustainable initiatives. Faces long with the fatigue and vertigo associated with tall, phallic office buildings suddenly alighted from the tram of forlornment, stepping out onto a platform of vigour and zest. The room, I feel it is appropriate to say, was brimming with vim.
She began with that most delightful of rhetorical opening gambits — the open question to the floor. Thus it was: “What do you think our biggest contribution to climate change is?” Straightforward, non?
The floor rose to the occasion, offering several laudable suggestions. “All of the paper you print?”, rang one voice, hysterical in the pursuit of truth. “It simply must be the printer cartridges expended!” screamed another, even more bent on wisdom than the first. Yet another person suggested the power used by the lights, though all present mentally agreed this was a stupid suggestion. Several slight shakes of the head and a well-timed smirk by the presenter revealed the incorrectness of all of the above. It was at this exact moment that an idea issued forth from my upstairs thinking box.
I knew I had the correct answer. It just had to be right! I had kept Ockham at the forefront; swinging the razor with sophistication and skill. My answer was this:
“The work you do facilitating the practices of clients that contribute significantly to the severe degradation of the natural world, at an increasingly alarming rate.”
If ever there was to be a study on the acoustics of jurisprudence, that was the moment for it. The room, silent. The crowd, hushed. The walls screamed in a fit of muted corporate fury.
The previously pallid presenter turned a risqué sort of scarlet — quelle horreur! It took more than several milliseconds for the mental sauce to flow to the far corners of the cerebral juicebox: this was not the correct answer. Grad job chances felt quickly evaporated. Ockham had failed me! An important artery or some such had been severed on the proverbials!
After an astonishingly exaggerated pause, the speaker spoke. The correct answer, diary, was this:
“All of the air miles our lawyers rack up”
Razor's Edge is a third-year JD student.
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