July 8th, pleads week. Lindsay and I had marked our calendars for this indeterminate day after being told weeks in advance that the office would need our help doing pleadings for new clients. Despite being unsure of what pleadings really were, and what was going to be required of us, we showed up that day ready to be greeted by mundane paperwork. Instead, to our surprise, we were greeted by one of the guardianship attorneys, Kristen, and her secretaries, Amar and Yasmin, who were excitedly running around the office handing out scripts to the song they’d written about pleads week. Bemused but caught up in the liveliness, Lindsay and I dropped our bags and joined in the merriment. It was then that our first task of pleads week was handed down to us: surprise another guardianship attorney, Wendy, with a performance of Dade Legal Aid’s original song, “Pleads Week,” to the tune of “We Will Rock You” by Queen. The entire guardianship department, Kristen, Amar, Yasmin, Andrea, Lindsay, and I, secretly met next to Wendy’s office and reviewed our scripts before stomping and clapping our way into her office, singing
“Buddy, you’re a ward, and it ain’t your choice
Applying at Legal Aid, gonna need a guardian someday
We gotta work on your case, in our office space
Drowning in pleadings all over the place
Pleads Week, Pleads Week, Pleads Week!!!!
Pleads Week, Pleads Week, Pleads Week!!!!”
The song lasted roughly two minutes, the stomping and clapping were out of sync, the lyrics were drowned out by our laughing, but nonetheless, pleads week had begun on the best note. The exuberant attitudes that Dade Legal Aid’s Guardianship Department bring to their work is inspiring to say the least. The initiative they took to make our everyday paperwork into a week long extravaganza complete with its own theme song, is only a small display of the amiable nature they emanate on a daily basis. No one at Dade is ever without a kind word, cheerful smile, or encouraging sentiment when they see us around the office. The jovial environment they foster is truly like no other, and I am privileged to have had the opportunity work alongside such passionate, considerate, and empowering women every single day.