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Inter-office romance, arrogant partners and angst — sounds like just about any law firm in San Francisco. In fact, it’s the work of Jaeson Post, whose play “Worse Than Chocolate” is set in a fictitious San Francisco law firm and opens tonight at Theatre Rhinoceros. The play revolves around a lesbian who works in the firm’s word processing department and becomes romantically involved with an attorney at the firm. In so doing, the lead character violates both the lesbian taboo of dating straight women and her co-workers’ taboo of consorting with the lawyers they so disdain. Characterized by Post as an “old-fashioned romantic comedy,” the play explores the upstairs-downstairs division between staff and attorneys that exists at some law firms. “It’s such a stratified atmosphere,” says Post. “It’s one of the last bastions of hierarchical elitism where you can get away with that shit.” Post would know. He wrote the play over several years while working in the word processing departments at two different San Francisco firms. The play ran for two weeks at Exit Stage Left last December from which it got picked up by Theatre Rhinoceros. Despite the play’s many potshots at lawyers, Post, who is currently a legal secretary at San Francisco’s nine-attorney Steyer Lowenthal Boodrookas Alvarez & Smith, says his employer has been incredibly supportive of the production. And as a tribute to Bay Area firms, Post is even inviting local attorneys to perform a two-line cameo in the first scene, with the goal of featuring a different attorney on each of the play’s 22-night run. “It’s a fun idea and it’s a great chance for people from a particular office to come together on the same night,” says Post.

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