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SIDE | BAR

4

zip-lock baggie stuffed with yellow stickies. Often, as notably amusing things occurred or were said in court,

I jotted them down. When I retired, I kept those notes. So, now, as I reach into the baggie…

Names I was called

, usually in the context of, and instead of, “Yes, Judge,” or “Yes, Your Honor.” I was

referred to as “Captain,” “Boss-man,” “Your Greatness,” and “Lord.” That last one came from a young lawyer

who had just left a Bible-study gathering. I whispered to my clerk that I’d like to keep the label, but she

pretended not to hear me.

An elegantly dressed, middle-aged, and allegedly highly paid prostitute, after being advised by me that she

could reset her case to hire a lawyer, leaned on the Bench and replied, “OK, hon.” After she had departed, I

did walk around to check, and sure enough, the sign on my Bench said “Hon. Mark Atkinson.” Maybe that’s

where she got it.

A sheriff’s deputy who worked in the jail informed me that he never let inmates call him “Boss,” as it stood

for “Sorry Son Of a B______,” backwards. I wasn’t so sure I believed him, but I still kind of twitch when

someone calls me that to this day.