Sunday, June 24, 2007


No this is not about the fictional best attorney in the world.

Longtime and careful readers of the blog know that we take interest in many of the mundane aspects of modern life. One thing that has always bothered us is the management of lines at commercial establishments. The way things now exist, when you pick a line, you enter a “time” lottery. If the fortunes of fate shine upon you, then your line moves quickly. If however, a problem occurs, you can be in “line hell.”

Have you ever wondered what takes so many people so long to buy a movie ticket? It’s a simple transaction: walk to the teller: tell them the movie, the time and number of people and tender payment. But we often see lengthy discussions involving multiple individuals, quizzical expressions which end up taking much too long to buy a simple ticket.

We often ponder what is actually being discussed:

“Hi, I’d like to buy a ticket, change my seats on my upcoming flight to Osaka, Japan, check to see if I should refinance my mortgage, and pay for the entire transaction in German marks.”

Teller: Sure- this should take about an hour, give or take, depending upon the latest currency market report.”

Word now reaches us that the supermarket chain Whole Foods, new of late to New York City, and facing smaller stores with large customer traffic, has adopted what we call: “the bank line system.”

In the “Bank line system” there is one line for multiple tellers. As you approach the front, you run no risk of queing up behind the customer from hell. The problem with this system is two fold: from the vendor’s prospective, the longer line that the system generates, tends to scare off people and they leave the store before they shop.

From the customer’s perspective, you bear the risk of what we call “institutional line break down” or ILBD.

We’ve seen ILBD a hundred times at our own Au Bon Pain. The good people at ABP tend towards the “bank line system” which is good, but they lack the fortitude to keep the system running through long lines. Thus, when the line gets long, then either a nefarious customer will walk up directly behind the individual ordering at one of the cashiers- as if the other 20 people standing in line are stupid- or one of the cashiers will get nervous seeing a long line of 20 people, and shout “form three lines please.” The resulting new lines are noticeably shorter- but here’s the rub- the wait is longer.

Que management analysis scientifically proves that the “bank line system” effectively manages lines and cuts wait time significantly. The only issue is customer perception: “Wow this line is long. Forget it.”

As always, education is the key, and we are starting now. We call upon Au Bon Pain to “stay the course” and hold tight to the “bank line system” even on those Monday lunch hours when jurors, attorneys, and clients all pile in seeking a hot cup of soup on a cool August day.

Perception versus reality. The topic is lines, but you easily apply the analysis to North of the Border- they appear to be running a court system, but in reality…..(add your own punch line here).

See You In Court.


Anonymous said...

Good thing that Fernandez-Rundle is going to extend to Fred Evans the same type of deal she gave Commissioner Johnny Winton for beating up cops. I mean, why would she not? They both were under the same conditions, but in different places. What say you?

I on Q said...

I'm really made Rumpole. If you're going to use the Q- then write about the Q-

Q is the word
have you heard?
He's got groove
he's got feeling
Q is the time
is the place
is the notion
Q is the way we are feeling.

Anonymous said...

last post = jumping the shark.
look it up.

Anonymous said...

brilliant legal topic. Anyone who comments on "lines" has too much time on their hands so I'll get this party started. Rumpole will be in Orlando Thursday. By negative implication Rumpole suspects can be eliminated. He either is the moderator of or attending a CLE gathering of similar egomaniacs-some popular some not- to hear themselves talk and when they leave some of the top legal minds in the state will have accomplished nothing. THE, that's right THE MOST important domestic issue in the U.S. is our culture of guns and violence- not immigration, not even the war in Iraq. It is that death and violence are so ingrained in our culture (tv news, newspapers, movies, tv, gang violence) that when 2 brothers are murdered in Opa Locka within hours of each other we barely blink an eye, oh sure it gets an article in the paper and some tv face time but that is it. In the last 30 years in the U.S. we have probably lost over 500,000 people to handgun violence. So what are you big shots in Orlando going to do about it. Judges Blake, Reyes,Krieger,Williams, etc. what are you going to do about it. Gun buyback programs, afterschool programs or another fucking opera house.

shumie coco puffs fan said...

Rumpole I just heard on the radio that Florida is looking for a new State song. Can you please get behind the movement for

Shumie Shumie
coco puffs
shumie shumie shumie?


Rumpole said...

Me go to a bar meeting and hobnob with real lawyers?

Surely you jest sir.

Anonymous said...

get some rest rumpole, you be slippin, I mean trippin or is it flippin. I need to brush up on my rap-anyway I hit the nail on the head because if you weren't going to O town the rebuke would have been more abrasive and would not have included sir.

Anonymous said...

7:36, I know exactly who you are, but you already embarass yourself on a daily basis, so I'll save you the increased attention.

Anonymous said...

I don't jest, and don't call me Shirley!

Anonymous said...

I can't say I can put a face to the name of Manny Segarra, but you seem to be allowing some pretty nasty personal attacks through your moderation. Seems hurtful to both the man and the blog. We are all lawyers; we have the humble and noble distinction of serving people fallen on hard times and/or their victims. Have we not all earned some modicum of respect for each other. Our differences are much less than we imagine, no?

a&E said...

Hi Miami- just a quick update: A&E finished (finally) shooting the exteriors for "Hot Miami Nights-Cool Miami Cash: The JC Elso Story". Production and interior shooting has already started in Hollywood. Thanks to the West Palm Beach officials who let us use their courthouse. Miami- the feds and state gave us too much trouble. But some Miami lawyers did make it in some exterior and background shots.

Our cast includes Patricia Heaton as Judge Seitz; John Turturro as Mel Black; Andy Garcia as Willie Falcon and Jimmy Smits as Sal Magluta. Newcomer Nicholas Gonzalez will play JC Elso, and Edward James Almos will play the prosecutor.

Look for the mini-series on the fall schedule of A&E!

Jon Wange, location producer, A&E

Anonymous said...

Elso was a real jerk and got what was coming to him.

When he gets out of jail, he will petition to get reinstated with the Bar and after a few long years, they will let him back in.

Is this a great country or what?

Anonymous said...

If u choose to run for judge, you must accept the lashings...it's a little different if you are just another courthouse mope.

Anonymous said...

I think this is a dumb post.

Anonymous said...

see , florida bar v. shuminer, 567 so 2. 430

even steven said...

Seen on the legal scene:

Bill Barzee bringing home the bacon, federal style.

Vic Vedmed, being Vic.

Josh Allen, back from two weeks in the south of france, wearing a new Hermes tie and shirt and looking sharp.

Shumie asking around the courthouse if anyone has any idea who is writing those shumie songs on the blog.

Dan Lurvey (of the L&L twins) taking no prisoners in DUI court.

Tom Cobitz, bemoaning the new court appointment system.

Joel Denaro hitting up lawyers for contributions to the lobbyist who's going to make Cobitz feel better.

A coupla bondsmen and a coupla lawyers doin what they do.

That cheap judge, doing it again on SOBE with a 5% tip. She's embarassing everyone who eats with her.

Anonymous said...

Reading Rumpole's comment from 8:19 last night is is possible he is not a lawyer, but a JA?

His comment about not hobnobinng with "real lawyers" can be interpreted to mean he is not a "real" lawyer, but something else, like a JA, a cop, a court reporter, etc.

Just a thought.

Anonymous said...

I don't think calling for gun control embarrasses me rumpole. You and your dui hack friends obviously don't deal with autopsy photos very often or you would, after 10 years, get sick of them as I have. I am only embarrassed at my stupidity to dedicating so many years of my life to a futile cause.

Rumpole said...

huh????I don't get your post.

Anonymous said...

Screw you, 10:07 A.M., you obviously do not know JC. By the way I sure as heck hope he gets reinstated to the bar! ASS#!*&, get a freakin life and stop judging people because of their mishaps. MORON!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!