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NC Workers' Compensation Lawyer - Jay Gervasi - Part 7



Noted Greensboro Workers' Compensation Attorney Jay Gervasi joins Law Talk with Bill Powers to discuss the practice of law.


Bill Powers: Sure, and hanging out at Ford Macon and the BT Beach Tavern and the Royal James are all fun things to do.

Jay Gervasi: Oh yeah. And of course the aquarium, I always loved the aquarium. I'm just a nut about aquariums.

Bill Powers: Right. Well, you're a Duke guy and I will hasten to add that it is the Duke NC State facility that's down there in Beaufort down there now I think. But that, I think that. But would you, since you worked there, I mean and it's funny you mentioned it because I always thought I was the youngest member of the Cousteau Society, I grew up on the ocean and I wanted to be a marine biologist myself. Do you think that'd be a job that if money were no object, would that be an alternative? What else would you like to do?

Jay Gervasi: Well, at this point I'm too old.

Bill Powers: Well, let's say you start over, say you got another career, what other career would interest you?

Jay Gervasi: You know people ask that, it's funny because my first reaction is I have no idea. If I could... My clients are always people, most of the ones I have, are people that can't go back to the job where they got hurt, they were hurt too badly to do what they used to do. And so they are often placed in a position of having to just open their minds up and try to figure something else they'd like to do.

Jay Gervasi: And I have to admit to them, it's like if I ask myself that question I would say I have no idea what to do, and if I for example got a head injury or something that kept me from doing this, I could lose both my legs and still do it, but head injuries, I don't know have any idea what I would like to do. You talk about teaching and I like teaching, I don't know if I would like the technical aspects. Like I would have no idea how to prepare or grade a test, for example.

Jay Gervasi: I mean you may have done enough of that stuff, adjuncting around or something, but I would have no clue. But teaching would be fun. Teaching more informally, taking kids on field trips, that kind of stuff would be a blast. When I was working in Charlotte, I volunteered at Discovery Place. And did interpretation at the touch pool on Saturdays, and that was just huge fun with the kid and that sort of thing. I think... I have no idea what my other career would be. I mean I think my answer to that is I'm a complete blank.

Bill Powers: Well, that's okay.

Jay Gervasi: I'd be clueless.

Bill Powers: I want to encourage people, law students, potential law students, I don't personally think there's one type of degree or one type of background that's mandatory to go to law school. I went to law school with a woman who, as I remember, played French horn at Julliard. There are certain different personality types and things that are better for litigation in my mind, I think you're born a litigator, generally speaking.

Bill Powers: Let me ask you this, then, I don't know if you're a reader or if you're a movie guy, Netflix or whatever, but what's the last book you read? What's the last show you've seen?

Jay Gervasi: Well, I actually watch a huge amount of TV, but it tends to be good TV. Last night, my wife's a big Doctor Who fan so we watched that last night. And of course my wife directs my reading too. Probably my favorite author, well there are a couple of them. One is Terry Pratchett, who died of brain disease a few years back. His Discworld series is just magnificent, great stuff, huge fan. The Good Omens series they had on [inaudible] is from a book that he did with Neil Gaiman, who is another one of my favorite authors. And then there's a guy named Neal Stephenson, I think he lives in Seattle. I think he was a physicist originally but he writes these sprawling things, there's a three book set called His Baroque Cycle, which I think the first one's Quicksilver and then the second one is something else, System of the World or something.

Jay Gervasi: Like 3000 pages by the time the smoke clears, but it's fictional but historical fiction, that covers from the early 1700s through the mid to late 1700s when sort of the world was developing the idea of money and credit, which had never been there before. Some of the political stuff. He has these appealing characters who just end up all over the world, literally all over the world. I remember thinking with all the work he must have put into researching this, if it hadn't sold he'd be screwed.

Jay Gervasi: But the most recent thing I've been reading are the things by Patrick O'Brian, my wife made me do it. The Master and Commander movie with Russell Crowe and Paul Bettany, some time ago. It was sort of a combination of a couple of these Jack Aubrey, Stephen Maturin books. There are 21 of them.

Bill Powers: I didn't know that.

Jay Gervasi: Oh yeah, it will eat your time. But the ability to get a Kindle app on my phone is great because if I'm standing in line at Walgreens or something waiting for medicine I can read something, but it will also, if you're not careful, it will destroy your life. I mean just reading all the time instead of doing your job. I guess the most recent one is one of, I'm in the middle of one of O'Brian's earlier books before he did the Aubrey-Maturin series that was... Great books. Jay Tray, he likes them too, he's a big fan. Jay's better, more literate than I am.

<< Part 6 | Part 8 >>

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