Discovery with Michael J. Decker

Michael Decker (a.k.a. Captain Cool) on Dylan, DeLillo and dive bars

Published in 2017 Colorado Super Lawyers magazine

By Michael J. Decker on March 15, 2017


My colleagues would be surprised to know that … I own a dive bar.

When I was a newbie lawyer I … considered the ability to overprepare to be my biggest advantage. 

The lawyer I most admire is … my granddad, Holley Baker. He was a lawyer in Ohio and I used to follow him around while he worked. He was ethical, hard-working, compassionate and a gentleman to everyone.

The quality I most like in a lawyer is … common sense.

My pre-trial routine is … reading the Rules of Evidence from front to back. It’s the last thing I do the night before trial.

My career high point (so far) has been … starting a law firm with my partner, Dan Murphy. It has been a fun, rewarding and only occasionally scary experience. 

When I win a case, I celebrate by … busting my kids out of school and doing something fun, followed by a nice dinner with my wife. 

The SCOTUS justice I’d most like to meet is … Louis Brandeis (via time machine). Otherwise, Ruth Bader Ginsburg.

The SCOTUS decision I’d most like to overturn is … Citizens United. Too bad James Madison isn’t around to offer a critique, but I think he’d say that money isn’t speech and corporations aren’t actually people.

My courtroom walkup music would be … “The Underdog” by Spoon. 

A different practice area that intrigues me is … Veterans Benefits. Some great people need our help.

My fictional hero is … Indiana Jones.

My real life hero is … my dad.

The talent I wish I had is … picking up foreign languages easily. 

If I won the lottery I’d … buy the Cubs.

I wish I had invented … a way to eliminate traffic.

My favorite song lyric is … “Money doesn’t talk—it swears.” – Bob Dylan.

The movie line I quote most often is … “Everything ends badly. That’s why it ends.” – from the movie Cocktail.

I can’t believe more people haven’t read … Don DeLillo. He’s famous enough but rarely mentioned in popular discussion. Maybe his next book should be about teenage vampire zombies that fall in love while fighting with lightsabers.

The three people I’d invite to dinner are … Bob Dylan, Malcolm Gladwell and Thomas Friedman.

If I had a morning show, my co-host would be … Greg Lindsay. I’d like to host a sports talk show with him and force him to admit that hockey is a sport.

My least-favorite word is … literally. It’s so overused and often incorrectly. “Ironically” would be
a close second.

When I started, I wish I knew … to relax and enjoy the ride.

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