Discovery with Paul R. Regensdorf

Paul Regensdorf on humility, humor and why he is like his Dalmatians

Published in 2017 Florida Super Lawyers — June 2017

I can’t go a day without … chocolate (why would you want to?).

If you were in my office, you’d … see that I’m a cross between being OCD and an inveterate slob.

My colleagues would be surprised to know that … I love most all music—from classical to Scott Joplin to Simon & Garfunkel.

The lawyer I most admire is … any Legal Aid lawyer or public defender. They often labor in the vineyards of despair, for reduced compensation, and deserve our utmost respect. 

The quality I most like in a lawyer is … humility, mingled with large doses of humor. The former is way too scarce. The latter, thankfully, not so much.

My pre-trial routine is … boring: Grind it out. You have to pull yourself up the mountain psychologically so that, when you start trial, you are on top. Not to the point of seeming arrogant, but at the peak of quiet confidence. It shows.

My career high point (so far) has been … most recently, saving a senior citizen’s home from a foreclosing reverse-mortgage lender that had overreached. The high was enhanced by doing it pro bono.

When I win a case, I celebrate by … taking a nap. I have become like my Dalmatians—I have only two speeds: full … and dead stop.

I almost quit the law because … it wasn’t fun anymore. But by working on my own (outside of a large firm) and doing what I want to do, I find the joy has returned.

The SCOTUS decision I’d overturn is … Temptation is to say Citizens United or Shelby County (worthy choices). But if had a “free overturn” card in my pocket, I think I might save it, because I have real concern that the next case will be worse than Citizens or Shelby

My favorite Twitter feed is … Paul Krugman (@paulkrugman). Brilliant economist who can explain economics to bozo-brains like me.

I get angry when … I witness rank hypocrisy. For instance, those who rail against something—usually claimed to be a “sin”—only to be caught with “their pants down” six months later.

On my best day … I’ve made a difference.

On my worst day … I’m cranky and contentious, and lack patience.

The craziest thing I’ve heard of happening in a courtroom is … a lawyer exposing himself in open court in front of a jury, and it was basically—almost—completely appropriate. That lawyer is a congressman today.

I wish I had invented … a way to recycle washed-up old shopping malls, after the stores have closed or left, and turn them into something important or useful. Whoever finds a way to do that will be a gazillionaire.

My courtroom walk-up music would be … call me strange, but this is clear—Yanni: “Santorini,” Live at the Acropolis version. Powerful. If you can’t win after listening to the last minute of this recording, “you got a dawg that jes’ won’t hunt!”

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