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  • Scott Gardner

Practicing in SW Va. - Service

Updated: Oct 10, 2019

In a courthouse far, far away. If you’re a “flat earther” then this is truly on the edge. I discover I am closer to eight other state capitals than Richmond. I have three cases. #1 A highly educated attorney questions the not so educated defendant. I will learn that she makes about $300 a week under the table as a fry cook. A job she’s held since she was 14. Attorney: are you behind on your electric bill? Defendant: no sir. I don’t pay my electric bill. Attorney: are you behind on your cable bill? Defendant: Sir, why would I have a cable bill if I don’t have electricity? The highly educated attorney sits down. Judge: Mr. Gardner these papers look a little confusing. Is the defendant behind in her mortgage by $16,000 or $19,000? Me: Judge, i don’t know but does it matter? Judge: point taken. Sigh. #2 Judge to the defendant “Don’t I know you? You weren’t wearing that beard the last time I saw you.” Defendant: “no, but I was wearing handcuffs.” Win. #3 we cannot proceed because the deputy did not post notice of the hearing on the property. I find the deputy at the end of the hall eating a sandwich and he advises that the address we gave the court is incorrect. I decide I’m going to find the address on my own and go to the clerks office to pull the tax records. The tax book appears to be 600 pages of blank paper. A clerk appears from the back room holding half a sandwich and offers help. She explains that when the tax book is printed, the printer runs out of ink at the letterM and you can’t read the pages after that. She sends me to the treasurers office. The treasurer is at lunch, so I go to the commissioners office down the hall. A very nice woman appears at the window and tells me the assessors office next door could help me. Now at this point, I’m all in. I go to the next window and ring the bell. The same woman appears in the window and she is eating some fruit from a cup. Now i have a lot on my mind - Tiger Woods, UVABasketball, Hokie Spring Football, but I quickly discover that the two offices are really just one room with two windows. The woman asked me how she can help, as if she had never seen me. She taps on her computer for a while and then gives me an address she “recons“is correct. Not totally confident, I google the address and head over for a physical inspection. I hop out of the car and take a picture of the house with my phone. As I was taking the picture, a man approaches me from across the street, carrying what looks to be all of his belongings in a grocery bag, and asks me for money. He told me that Mr. “Smith “lived in that house. I asked him if he was sure. He said, “relax boss, we’re on the same team. “ I asked him what team is that? He said, “you’re the one wearing a tie. You should know. “3 1/2 hours from home I have a guess from a county employee but firm confirmation from Phil Collins’ lonely man on the corner. Since this is the year of Loving my neighbor, I offered to buy him lunch at the McDonald’s on the corner. He accepts. Now I’m in the McDonald’s bathroom and a kid, maybe eight or nine, jumps out from the stall. With my parent hat firmly in place, I say “dude, you should wash your hands.” Surprisingly, he does so. As I’m watching this kid scrubbing his hands, I’ll look down to discover he has no shoes. “Dude, where are your shoes? ““I think they’re in the ball pit. “ I’m now thinking washing his hands is a waste of time. Say goodbye to my two new friends, I head out of town and light up a cigar listening to the Commodores “High on Sunshine.”


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