In Big Firm World, inflated associate salaries have exacerbated the pressure to perform, leaving many Cogs scared to ask simple questions for fear that a partner, client or senior associate may determine the questioner is a moron and totally unworthy of a paycheck.

Fear not! I am here for you. I have compiled a list of “stupid questions,” some of which I have, at one time or another, been asked (or wanted to ask), some of which have been e-mailed to me over the years and most of which — hey, I’m nothin’ but honest, right? — I am just making up. For your convenience, I’m also including the answers I’ve gleaned from my time inside the machine.

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