Why I Hate Norm Pattis

by Jamison Koehler on May 14, 2010
Aerial view of DC


I first learned Norm Pattis’ lousy, stinking name through Scott Greenfield, who often uses something Pattis has written as the launching point for one of his own entries.  And Greenfield writes about Pattis in reverential terms you don’t often see on Simple Justice.

So what does Scott Greenfield know anyway?

Mirriam Seddiq is more effusive in her praise.  She talks about Norm as her latest blog crush.  And she devotes a whole entry to Pattis, entitled “Thank You, Norm Pattis.”

Blah, blah, blah, blah, blah.  I knew I never liked that Mirriam Seddiq.

Also putting him in the “do not like” category is the fact that he tends to occupy the field on any topic he chooses to write about.  He was one of the first people to write about Elena Kagan’s nomination for the Supreme Court.  After Pattis had written on the subject with such insight and eloquence, there didn’t seem to be anything left to say.

“I was trying to put together my thoughts on this nominee,” writes Brian Tannebaum, “when I ran across them on Norm Pattis’ blog.”  Tannebaum reproduces a long quote from Pattis’ entry on the Kagan nomination.  Tannebaum himself is no slacker when it comes to this type of thing. Yet the sum total of what he could think to add to Pattis’ analysis came at the end of his entry: “Yeah,” Tannebaum writes. “What he said.”

Damn you, Norm Pattis.

I was planning to do an entry on the difficulty in cross-examining a child witness. I was thinking in particular about a sexual assault case I tried a few years ago in juvenile court. The entry would have been moving, powerful, gripping.  There wouldn’t have been a dry eye on the Internet.  Just around that time, almost as if he had stolen the idea from me, Pattis came out with two entries of this own, both of which were far better than anything I could have written.

Damn you to hell, Norm Pattis.

Then came Mother’s Day.  You would think that no one would be able to occupy the field on such an individual and personal topic.  You would be wrong again.  It seemed as though no one could write a Mother’s day post without starting with – or at least paying homage to – the two posts Pattis had written. The posts ended up being referred to and reproduced all over the Internet.

Jerk.  Loser.  Momma’s boy.

I would say I bet he doesn’t even have a mother.  But I’m afraid my own mother would read that and try to adopt him herself.  Just what I need:  Norm Pattis this. Norm Pattis that. Norm Pattis showing me up at every family dinner.

Okay, then, so he knows how to write. He writes about wishing trial lawyers could interact with juries more directly, and he does it in such a way that you find yourself thinking he would be the only lawyer you would ever want to hire should you find yourself facing criminal charges. He comes up with the term “smurfing” to describe the passing along of bad clients from one lawyer to another, a term I have no doubt will soon be bandied about among lawyers all over the country with an affectionate and respectful nod to Pattis.

I hate your lousy, stinking guts, Norm Pattis.

Big deal, you think.  He’s probably some nebbish hiding behind his laptop, writing about what he has gleaned from watching T.V. without ever having seen the inside of a courtroom. Then he posts a video (with a “Look, Mom, I’m finally on YouTube”) in which he expertly handles an idiot witness from the chiropractic industry who can’t bring himself to answer a simple question with a “yes” or “no.”

Sometimes you just want to pick up your ball and go home.

With Pattis having occupied the field on virtually everything else, I am left with no subject other than Pattis himself. But, even then, I have no doubt he will come out with an entry of his own that will put mine to shame. He’ll be charming, humorous, self-deprecating. I’ll be left with nothing to write but, yeah, what he said.

And I’ll hate the guy even more.

Post Script to Norm Pattis:  My mother called.  She read this post.  She checked out your blog. Dinner on Sunday at 7:00 pm?

26 Comments on “Why I Hate Norm Pattis

  1. Pattis is the man! There is no better writing on the Internet today than Pattis. Thanks for the funny piece.

  2. What I like about Norm Pattis is that he’s got range. He can do humor as well as serious subject. Most importantly, he is positive. He doesn’t make fun of people or categorize or label people like many bloggers do. He shows that you don’t have to be unpleasant or mean to be a first-rate lawyer. In this sense, he is a true inspiration. That’s why I love Norm Pattis.

  3. Note to Anonymous: I am sorry I have not been approving your comments. I welcome contrary views and will even approve anonymous comments if they are constructive. But your comments were simply mean and unsupported.

  4. To “Regis” and “Morrison”: While I welcome comments with views opposed to mine on this site, your comments were mean-spirited, wacky, and not at all on point so I have deleted them. You also failed to provide a valid email address. Please go somewhere else with your comments.

  5. Anyone who has read any of Pattis’ blogs and finds him to be ‘self-deprecating’ has to be smoking crack. ‘Self-defecating’ would be a more appropriate term. Pattis is obviously in love with himself and his ego undermines his credibility to any objective reader. Obviously, Koehler is not objective.

  6. While we are on the topic of credibility, Dick, let’s not forget this priceless gem of yours posted on my page:Posted on October 12, 2011 at 2:19 pm by Richard Bridwell
    1 Killer & 12 Righteous People
    I have served on a jury, and I would gladly pull the trigger/switch/lever to advance the cause of justice which Conscienceless Norm cries about (even while he counts his enormous fees from this case). Pattis will not escape the Ultimate Judgment, however, and he will discover how God views his perverse, cruel statements.

  7. Norman? What can I say? I’ve seen him in action on a personal level . It was like watching a movie with a good script and one heck of an ending!!! Hey Norm you are the best!! I hope to never need your services again. But, God forbid, you are my only choice. Thanks !!!

  8. Norm, I see you’re still the classy, versatile, steadfast warrior (speaking as someone who would know: a former client in a civil matter. You defended my rights that were overtly violated by the ‘machine’ police department quite successfully – and artfully, I might add…). I’d like to reconnect regarding a loved one’s strife. Please be on the ‘lookout’ for an email or call from me by tomorrow. Time sensitive…As always, thank you…

  9. Hi Norman how are you I hope you are ok, I just wan to Thank you for
    everything you did for me , You are the best and keep goin to help people need you help, but i have something not clear is about that registration you know what i am say,can you tell me, tank you take care.
    William Matute.

  10. Sorry i used to work whit Doreen Hudson may be you now remember me

  11. I have to add Norman is a brilliant man and i was very lucky to have him represent me in a very high profile case here in NY i went through a bunch idiots and felt doomed till in walked Norman in Rikers and i knew within a few minutes i was in the best hands and he was the real deal..
    My case was the much publicized “Soccer Mom Madam” i have to rate him as superb and i am a difficult person to handle..

  12. You should know, J., that this post came up in a conversation with an FBI agent the other night. You have readers in mysterious places.

  13. I love u norm…….no matter what the haters say lol

  14. You’re really not gonna like that I looked him up ’cause he’s this cool, ponytailed lawyer dude giving opinions on dead Rock Stars like Tupac, Hendrix & Kurt Cobain and how their estates were handled on a new TV show called “Celebrity Legacies”, huh?
    I saw your link on Google & thought “I’ve seen Koehler Law Ads! They seem like cool people too…how can THEY *hate* Norm?” Glad I clicked through & didn’t just make assumptions!

  15. Norm,
    Thanks for posting this link on Facebook. Mr. Koehler is hilarious. I think you should allow him to collaborate with you on your next book. Throw the guy a bone, Norm.
    Be Well….

  16. A brilliant man, tenacious and his heart is with his client. I admire him because he said to us .. you are my client and you are my family no one F… k with my family ..

  17. Yes that’s Norm Pattis . Best lawyer , tenacious and fights for his clients rights .

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