Okay, so there I was on a flight from Oakland to Seattle to visit with my business partners, one who is an MBA and the other who is a CPA. While I was sitting on the plane, I suddenly got the urge to do some research on an upcoming lawsuit that was filed against me, and which I decided (perhaps foolishly) to represent myself.
Now the people suing me were two lawyers. I had the opportunity to visit with these two guys just before they decided to haul off and sue me for goodness knows what. And while I was in their office I noticed that they were PC users. Hmm, piece of cake, I thought to myself. I can knock these guys off easy.
Sure enough not long after our meeting the court papers arrived at my mailbox. I was being sued. At first I freaked out, and I wondered how I was going to put together a case by myself. I tossed and turned at night in the bed thinking and wondering how to go about collecting all the information to present in court, because after all documentation is the key to succeeding in any court case. Without it you’re doomed.
Fast forward to the flight to Seattle, home of the monolith called Microsoft. I felt like I was traveling backwards in time to a place long forgotten in the fog of the PC operating system and its devotees, who I could imagine huddling together in coffee shops under a dark, rainy Seattle sky. I was literally going from the Mac world to the PC world. I had to reach for my lifeline, which was my Powerbook that I had tucked away in my carry-on bag.
I cracked that puppy open, fired it up, and pondered the meaning of the universe as all Mac aficionados do when they first get started. It’s a holy moment, when you can imagine a world without limits. Case in point, just by hitting the F11 key, all the windows vanish so that you can work on the desktop. To do this with a PC, you have to buy Vista, which eats up all your RAM and slows your machine down to a crawl. Not so with a Mac.
I felt a moment of spry, youthful mischievousness as though I were getting away with something while being above it all. At 39,000 feet I was sitting in seat 1A as everyone behind watched in awe as the screen lit up. I tapped the mouse pad on Spotlight, and entered the key word search for the individual who was suing me. Up came hundreds of emails, documents, and spreadsheets related to this individual, including pdf’s and all were listed chronologically. I simply opened the ones which I felt were relevant to my case and saved them in text format on my desktop. The entire process lasted from the time it took us to fly from Mount Shasta to Mount Rainier -, about 30 minutes.
I waltzed into court with the documents bound in a very professional slick blue binder, and I was able to recount for the judge how the individuals who were suing me were complicit in their claims against me. I got off light by paying only a fraction of some of their monetary claims, while the ones related to my professional judgment were completely dismissed. Little did the judge realize, however, that it wasn’t only my expertise that I relied upon, because I could not have achieved these results without my Mac.
The author is a certified public accountant living in Marin County, California. You may reach him with your comments by visiting www.webtaxcpa.com.