I have been a lawyer for well over a decade now and I can tell you, the things that I learned working as a young man at my Grandparents’ gas station, have proven more valuable to the practice of law than all the books I read and lectures I attended in school. Don’t get me wrong, I was blessed to have had the opportunity to attend some terrific schools; but, a real lawyer needs an education based on common sense as well as theory and book learning. Let me explain....

I had the chance to meet everybody at the gas station. When I worked at the station, it was just before the advent of the credit card pay-at-the-pump and so people still walked into the gas station to buy their gas and grocery items. Every person from every walk of life came into that station: every gender, nationality, race, religion, socio-economic group, education level, political party and sexual orientation. Sane people came into the station. Crazy people came into the station. Sometimes the crazy people had to be escorted out of the station. I got to meet some famous people and I also met some infamous people. In fact, a lot of people who didn’t even own cars came into the station. On a daily basis, I got a chance to witness the wondrous menagerie of people that make up this country. Few places offer such riches.

It was in this setting that I learned how to talk to people. I could be ringing up the gas from a C.E.O. who owned the new Mercedes on Pump 3. At the same time, talking about the Bears game with a guy wearing dirt stained overalls- buying a pop. While, of course, trying not to bump into the Pakistani cab driver, camping in front of me, who was scratching off 30 Illinois lottery instant tickets, until he finally got the big $2.00 winner!

I used to love watching the interactions of my family at the station. My grandfather, who to me is a hero above the likes of Superman or Batman. He showed me, in his quiet Zen-like way, to stand up for something- be a real man, a family man and an honest man. And my grandmother who taught me to treat people with respect and above all else, “Be a Mench!” A Mench is a good, trusted person: a gentleman.

I learned that not everyone was as fortunate in this world. I met people who paid for a gallon of gas in change, praying it would be enough so they could get home to their kids. I learned how to take out the trash, mop the floor and stock the shelves. There is a real knowledge imparted in doing jobs that don’t just push paper. I learned that people are not perfect and that they make mistakes. And I learned that everyone deserves to be heard and deserves a second chance.

It is only now that I realize that it was in this place that the concepts of justice, fairness, hard work, humanity and humility- and sometimes their direct opposites- were imparted to me. These are tangible things that you can see in some people, if you look hard enough.

So, you ask, “what does this have to do with you and your case?” Well, what I am trying to say is that I know where you are coming from. I know people like you and I have helped many people like you. I realize that you got into your legal problems for a lot of different reasons. It is not because you are a bad person, but a person who may have just made some bad decisions. I totally get that.

What I am also saying is that I have the experience to help you in your time of need. But what is more important, I don’t just have the legal understanding, but I have the real world common sense understanding to do what I can for you as a person. I know that your situation is unique. Like the amazing people that walked in one after the other into that gas station of my past; you have an important story to tell. And you have unique needs that I, as your lawyer, can address. Together we can make sure that you are represented in a way that will make you feel like finally, “I got a guy!” A guy who understands my problems and can do something to really and truly help me.

So, now you know a little bit more about me and how I run my law firm. You know that I understand where you are coming from. If you want to talk more, give me a call at (847) 421-6464. I am happy to give you a free consultation. You are not obligated to hire me. I think, however, that once you talk to me, you will say, “I really want Ken Alpert to be my lawyer”. Call me today- (847) 421-6464.