February 19, 2010
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Foreclosing Possibilities

In McSweeney’s, Wajahat Ali has a fine article with a long title: "Could it be that the best chance to save a young family from foreclosure is a 28-year-old Pakistani American Playright-slash-Attorney who learned bankruptcy law on the Internet? Wells Fargo, you never knew what hit you.” Thanks, Roger Ebert.

(Editorial note to McSweeney’s: “playwright” usually has a ‘w’.)

In reality, "my law office" was actually my friend's office, which he'd lent to me so that I could meet these clients. The classy jacket had been purchased at a clearance sale in an outlet store at the Great Mall in Milpitas. The gel was the last remnant of a decaying and potentially expired bottle I'd probably had since college but never found the opportunity to use. The suitcase was a gift from my relatives in Pakistan—who, much like the rest of my family, were thoroughly shocked that I had passed the bar exam and become a licensed attorney. My business cards had been printed for free by Vistaprint, and despite having a professional front side featuring my name in bold letters and the words ATTORNEY AT LAW, the back side glared BUSINESS CARDS ARE FREE AT WWW.VISTAPRINT.COM!

Game over. I was doomed.