By Ed Horowitz, Editor
There are many "upsides" to being a senior lawyer, but one "downside" is a growing awareness of one's own mortality. Thus it is that when a colleague whom we know and admire passes away, we pause and reflect and remember. So, fittingly, this issue begins with a tribute to Hugh Biele, the Immediate Past Chair of our section, who died recently after a long and courageous struggle against numerous afflictions.
Next, a report on the section's recent and coming events. Then, a report on some of many projects our Executive Committee is working on, followed by volunteer opportunities for our members, health tips, and, of course, a memory test and some senior humor.
Several of the latter items include requests that Section members indicate their interest in assisting with Section projects, or submit ideas about projects, or submit humor suggestions for future issues of the Dinosaur Digest (because your editor's humor file is running low). Let's hear from you.
Remembering Hugh Biele
Everyone who knew Hugh Biele was saddened by his recent death. Hugh was the Immediate Past Chair of our Senior Lawyers Section and was movingly remembered by LACBA's most recent President, Eric Webber, in a message which included the following:
"Hugh was a lawyer, entrepreneur, educator, author and active member of many organizations, including the Los Angeles County Bar Association (LACBA), the Financial Lawyers Conference (FLC), the International Bankers Association (IBA), Volunteers in Parole L.A., Community Counseling Services L.A. and the St. Lawrence University Alumni Association.
"His volunteer service to the organized bar was wide-ranging and exemplary. Among other things, Hugh was the Immediate Past Chair of LACBA's Senior Lawyers Section, a past Chair of LACBA's Commercial Law & Bankruptcy Section, a past President of the FLC, and a past Co-President of the Lesbian & Gay Lawyers Association. A decorated Vietnam-era veteran of the U.S. Army, Hugh was also a founding member of LACBA's Armed Forces Committee
"Hugh touched countless people with his good nature, generous spirit, open mind, boundless energy and unique charm. To his extended family, he was a devoted spouse, father, grandfather, uncle and brother. Over the course of his life, Hugh was also a mentor, role model and great friend to many beyond his family – including a large number of Los Angeles lawyers.
"All of us who knew Hugh would, I suspect, agree that he was truly one-of-a-kind. He possessed an extraordinary combination of intelligence, creativity, courage, commitment and focus. He brought those qualities to everything he did – legal and business matters, volunteer work, as well as his heroic personal battle against AIDS. Hugh's ability to maintain a sunny disposition and to persevere, even as his health deteriorated, was inspiring.
"He approached every endeavor in his life, professional or personal, with admirable passion: a drive full speed ahead towards the objective. And if you were along for the ride with Hugh, it was sure to be a memorable adventure."
On October 25, section members and their guests spent a delightful evening at the Magic Castle in Hollywood. During a delicious dinner, we were entertained by Halloween costumed magicians, followed by the Castle's famous shows in its large and small theaters, and informal presentations in hallways and other areas, plus musical selections by Irma, the mysterious piano that plays any song requested by guests, with no piano player in sight.
(The Executive Committee is currently exploring other "fun" ideas for future excursions. Suggestions are welcome. Please submit them to email@example.com.)
Mark your calendars for the following SLS events (formal announcements and registration information to come):
• January 31, 2013:
Our third annual Trailblazers of the Bar event will honor California Supreme Court Justice Joyce Kennard and attorney Patricia Phillips. Justice Kennard has overcome numerous daunting hurdles to rise through our local bar and all levels of our courts to reach her present position as a highly-respected Associate Justice of the California Supreme Court. Patricia Phillips has earned a similar high level of respect for becoming the first female President of the Los Angeles County Bar Association, for the many other pioneering positions she has held in the legal community, and as a leading member of the family law bar.
Please plan to join members of our Association and of the judiciary at this event to honor and pay tribute to these true trailblazers. Registration and a gala reception will begin at 5:30 p.m. The formal program will start at 7:00 p.m. and will be followed with dessert and coffee service at 8:00 p.m.
• March 20, 2013:
Our Frozen in Time program, entitled "Riots in Los Angeles – Lessons Learned and Progress Made," has been tentatively rescheduled for March 20, 2013 at LACBA's headquarters. The evening will include a social hour and refreshments, followed by the program, for which attendees will receive 3.25 hours of CLE credit.
Twenty years after the 1992 riots and almost 50 years after the 1965 Watts riots, a distinguished panel of local officials and other leaders will review the impact of those events on the evolving relations between the LAPD and the African American community, and the lessons we have learned that continue to affect our entire community. The panelists are scheduled to include: Ninth Circuit Court of Appeals Judge Raymond Fisher, who was counsel to the Christopher Commission that examined the structure and operations of the Los Angeles Police Department; current LAPD Chief Charlie Beck; Civil rights attorney Connie Rice; and respected journalist Bill Boyarsky. The moderator will be Anthony De Los Reyes, of Pocrass & De Los Reyes, a member of our Section's Executive Committee and a former member of the Los Angeles Police Commission.
Section members are encouraged to submit questions to the panel in advance of the program, by email to Mr. Reyes at firstname.lastname@example.org."
• Two additional CLE credit programs are in the planning stages for Spring 2013.
Our Executive Committee at Work
In addition to planning the CLE and other events noted above, the Executive Committee has been busy with several other projects. Here are some examples:
• Cooperation with local efforts to assist the Los Angeles Superior Court and statewide courts concerning the increasing fiscal crisis facing our judicial system.
• Presentation of another mentoring event for new and recent admittees.
• Updating and publication of a Senior Lawyers Survival Guide.
• Preliminary work on preparing and publishing a sequel to LACBA's 1959 book, Lawyers of Los Angeles. (If you are interested in assisting with this project, please contact Executive Committee member Nowland Hong at email@example.com, or Caroline Vincent at firstname.lastname@example.org.)
We urge our members, who are able to do so, to volunteer to participate in LACBA's many pro bono projects, such as the Domestic Violence Project which will conduct its next training seminar on March 7, 2013 (contact Deborah Kelly at dkelly@ lacba.org).
For a full list of LACBA's projects, check LACBA's website, www.lacba.org.
Senior Lawyers Memory Exam
This issue's memory quiz tests what you remember from your high school studies:
1. Name the 13 original states.
2. Who was the first Chief Justice of the United States?
3. What is a "gerund"?
4. Name the protagonist in Catcher in the Rye.
5. What are the first three elements on the Periodic Table?
6. How many sides in a trapezoid?
7. What is the cube root of 125?
8. Translate "E Pluribus Unum."
9. What is the speed of light?
10. What percentage of your time in study hall did you actually spend studying?
Answers are at the end of his issue. (No peeking.)
(In case you've forgotten, the answers and scoring are below).
Health Tips for Seniors
We all know that regular exercise is a good thing. We are also aware, usually from personal experience, that it's too easy to find an excuse for postponing or ceasing regular exercise, especially considering the profession we belong to. Here are suggestions from several sources that will help one "keep at it":
• Join a gym and sign up for regular classes. The thought of money wasted by not attending may be a sufficient incentive to avoid missing the classes. (But see, the first joke under Senior Humor, below.)
• Schedule regular exercise sessions with a friend or family member, for example, at a gym or merely by taking walks together. Peer pressure can overcome excuses for skipping exercise.
• Take your dog for regular walks. After a while, he (or she) will remind you when it's time for that walk. And you'll both benefit.
• Walk up and down the stairs to your office, rather than taking the elevator. It's no excuse that your office is too many floors up because you can take the elevator part way, get out, and walk up the rest of the way.
You know you've reached your senior years when your doctor recommends you should get more exercise and you report back to the doctor at your next examination, "I took your advice and signed up for an aerobics class. I bent, twisted, gyrated, jumped up and down, and perspired for an hour. But, by the time I got my leotard on, the class was over."
You know you're a senior lawyer when your new secretary shows you a dusty box she found in the back of your supply cabinet and asks, "What's this stuff inside this box?" And you respond, "Carbon paper."
And you know you're a very senior lawyer when a client confesses she's having an affair and you respond, "Oh, who's catering it?"
(Senior Humor items for future issues are welcome. Send yours to email@example.com.)
Answers to the Memory Exam
1. New Hampshire, Massachusetts, Rhode Island, Connecticut, New York, New Jersey, Pennsylvania, Delaware, Maryland, Virginia, North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia.
2. John Jay.
3. A form of a verb used as a noun in a sentence, e.g., the word "writing" in "Writing memory exams can be fun."
4. Holden Caulfield.
5. Hydrogen (H), Helium (He) and Lithium (Li).
8. "Out of Many, One" or "One of Many."
9. 186,282.397 miles per second. (You get credit for rounding off to 186,000.)
10. Any honest answer of 90% or less gets credit. Any answer above 90% cannot be true or honest – deduct one point from your score.
10 correct = A+.
8-9 correct = A.
6-7 correct = B.
4-5 correct = C.
2-3 correct = D.
Less than 2 correct = your high school diploma will be revoked.
You can keep up with our section's doings between issues of the Dinosaur Digest by clicking here to visit our page on the LACBA website.
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