I learn from whomever I can. I’ve told you repeatedly that I learn more from my dog and grandchildren than from all the bearded, gazing gurus. We can even learn from the French.
I’ve preached that we ought not—no never—motivate our competition. I am civil to my opponents in the courtroom. I never threaten. If I’m afraid, I do not try to cover it with macho. If I’m confused I am confused. So are most lawyers and most judges. But I never– no never—attempt to frighten my adversaries—or to anger them.
When we are frightened we instinctively hide, run, or attack. When we’re told we’re going to be smashed, as the French relay swimmers were foolish enough to threaten the Americans in the Olympics, and the experts say no scenario can be found leading to an American victory what is to be done? But the experts overlooked the imprudent French threat that motivated the Frenchmen’s competition down to their toenails, which was the length of the American’s victory–the small part of a second.
I want my opponents to be comfortable, complacent, content, yes, cozy. I want them to see castles in the sky. I want them thinking of their golf game, or running off to Vegas where what they do stays in Vegas. I do not want them threatened, frightened or angered. And where do we learn all of this? You see, we can learn—even from the French.