Friday, December 14, 2007

In Which I Use Sharp Objects to Lacerate My Eyeballs and Pierce My Eardrums

I am going to lock my roommates out of the house until I get some answers. I do not care that this is finals week. This transcends the importance of finals. I need answers, and I need answers now. Seriously, you think you know someone, and then this happens.

How can anyone possibly explain owning a Wham! cassette tape? And not just owning it, but leaving it out in the open for other people to see? I am aware that my roommates have terrible taste in music, but this is inexcusable.

Heads are going to roll for this.

Saturday, November 24, 2007

Illinois Bar

Over the last couple of days, I finally decided that I am going to take the IL bar exam. It is a good plan, take out the 15 grand bar loan, live in DeKalb, which is about 45 minutes from my parents house, save over half that money, because it is a farm town with nothing in it other than one of my favorite bars (Otto's), and attend BarBri classes at NIU.

I have never been worried about passing the bar; I know that I am going to spend two months doing nothing but studying, becoming paranoid, and freaking out on a daily basis. But at the end of the day, I am confident that I will pass.

No, my concern has always been with the character and fitness portion. However, I never expected it to be with getting the requisite references for the character and fitness portion. I examined the IL bar app. last night, and apparently, one needs two undergrad professors as references.

This, to say the least, is going to be a huge problem for me. Huge in the way that I am rethinking the idea of taking the IL bar.* In four years of undergrad, the only time I ever talked to a professor was when he or she called on me. Much like my law school career, I never visited office hours, never engaged a professor outside of class, and never even joined a club (whether or not there was a faculty advisor).

I think that the reference is only for an objective inquiry into ones intelligence, an inquiry which is probably not generally necessary, but given my, ahem, colorful past, I think that the character reviewers may be interested in more information.

I am at a loss as to what to do. Not many people from my school are taking the IL bar, and those that are are nerds, so they know people. If anyone out there has any thoughts on how to jump this hurdle, I would appreciate it. Additionally, what the hell is a non-traditional law student supposed to do, the one who is 40 years old and all his professors from undergrad are probably dead. This fucking requirement has thrown me for a fucking loop.

My plan, for lack of anything better, is to start sending out letters to the four professors that I actually remember having, and hope that they take pity on me, and not necessarily remember that I was the kid who got an A in their class six years ago while looking incredibly bored. I hope that I have a good chance, assuming I can butter the Prof. up. My top choices are my business law prof. (you are the reason I went to law school!), and an accounting prof. (I am going to do Tax!), and convince them that all of my career decisions were all thanks to them and had nothing to do with the opportunities that actually presented themselves.

God this fucking sucks. I also need six references. If I knew six people, I would probably have a better job and not be a fucking tax lawyer.

*MD, for instance, requires five references, none of whom are married to each other (killer for me, my best friends from college married each other), that you have known for five years (another killer, most people who have known me for four years choose not to know me anymore).

Wednesday, November 07, 2007

My sister is getting married soon. To a Bears fan. As such, this is their wedding present from me. To put in their garage. Right in front of where he parks every night.

I am not sure if that answers this inquiry though.

Tuesday, November 06, 2007

Fun Fact of the Day that I did not Previously Know Because I do not Care About Guys Like Him

You all probably know this, but I did not. John John failed the bar twice. That gives me hope, and not just hope that I will someday screw the girl who went on to become Fraiser's Dad's maid.

Information like this is why I read sport's blogs.

Friday, October 26, 2007

Paul Harvey Presents . . . The Rest of the Story . . .

So, a while ago I told a story about going to a strip club. But I never told the story of how we got there. This here then, is the rest of the story:

I was shitfaced. I had been drinking all day. The Packers were on TV that night, so I had to drink more. Except they were playing like they had Turk's $40 dome gel on their hands and fumbling everything they almost touched. This made me upset. This made me drink more. I really do not remember the second half of the game. I was that drunk.

My friend put $150 on the game. Based on my recommendation. He is a fucking idiot. Over the course of the summer we worked together, I probably won one bet we had between us, and that was because there was traffic in Adams Morgan. And we would bet on everything. Always just a beer or something, but still, I never won (although I am holding out for one bet. I assert that Elliot's, from scrubs, breasts are a C-cup, he says they are a B. There is no definitive proof yet, which makes me hold on to me being right, but all signs point to me being wrong).

So the Pack lost. I was pissed (my favorite team lost) and he was pissed ($150 down the drain), but his girlfriend really wanted to go to the strip club. My friend and I were both hammered, but she only had a couple glasses of wine, so she offered to drive.

And what a drive it was. We drove around for at least an hour. Taking this road and that road. Side street? What the hell, it might be right. There were twists and turns that I could not fathom. I tried to help throughout this ordeal. My friend had an I-Phone. Surely the I-phone could help us in our time of need to see titties.

But no such luck. I asked my friend to see his i-phone not once, not twice, but thrice, at which point he yelled at me, said the fucking a few times, and belittled my knowledge of where the fuck we were.

But I knew where the fuck we were.

After a few more wrong turns and some circles where I got to see some old decrepit houses twice, my friend gave up. His almost exact words, "Fuck this, I have never been this lost before. I have no clue where we are. Let's just go home."

I said nothing. I was pissed at him. Sure I was drunk, and he was drunk, but fuck him, why should I help him now. He thinks that I cannot help just because this is the first time I have ever been in this city before, then fuck him. Fuck them both. No strip club for my boy or the girlfriend.

I thought that, but I am not that evil. After a few twists and turns, we approached an intersection. From the backseat I said, "Turn left here."

"What?" the girlfriend said.

"Turn Left!" I replied.

She looked at my friend, who shrugged his shoulders and said, "Fuck it, do what he says." His body language, voice inflection, everything about him said, I am so pissed off right now, this fucking kid thinks he knows my town better than me, then fuck him, let's do what he says. Let's get more fucking lost. Fuck him. Seriously, fuck him.

We winded around the curvy road for a bit (the road I said to turn onto), and lo and behold, there was our mecca of debauchery.

I left out some details. He had called this place twice to get directions. Based on those directions, he could not find it. I listened to those directions, and knew where the place was. Bear in mind, this is a city I have never been to in my life, yet I knew how to get to where we wanted to go.

In an attempt to trivialize my great achievement, I spent three years driving around at night. You learn to memorize signs (at least the smart ones do), and always know where you are going. I knew where we were going. I tried to explain it multiple times, but he would have nothing of that. I know streets, I know streets I have never been to, and I know how to find them. He almost missed out on the best sex of his life because he was too stubborn to listen to me.

Just a lesson for you all out there.

And THAT, is the rest of the story.

Friday, October 12, 2007

Trying to Help

Over the past week or so I have noticed some odd keywords leading folks to my blog. Most of them are written in a question type form, so I will now attempt to answer these questions.

--how long do call backs take?

I assume that you mean when they take you into the office, how long should you expect to be talking. You will usually meet with four people, and each interview is generally about 30 minutes. That means about two hours. When you interview with a big firm, you will talk to two partners and two associates. My advice, lawyers love to talk, but do not let them monopolize the time. However, make sure you are not 20 minutes and both of you have nothing to talk about. That is a death knell.

I have never had any of those crazy group interviews where three or four lawyers talk to three or four interviewees. And I thank my god for that.

-- lawschool & how long to wait before call back?

The easy answer to this is the same answer to every question in Law School. It depends. Some firms will get back to you in a week, some will take a couple months. Just be patient. If after a month you have not heard anything back send a respectful e-mail to your interviewer (the internet has some fun not so respectful e-mails, but I am too lazy to find them unless you pay me) or call the interviewer on a Sunday evening so you can leave a voice mail, and hope he gets back to you. I would not reccomend calling during normal business hours because the last thing an attorney wants to do is spend 20 minutes trying to figure out who you are and he will just transfer you to HR anyway. I never did any of this by the way. This is all speculation, but I stand behind my advice.

--1st year law school cannot finish case brief

You cannot even finish a damn case brief? Get the fuck out now. You do not belong here. Seriously though, this happens to everyone. Do not sweat it. This is why you should always read a case before you start briefing it (HAHAHA!!). By this time next year, you are not even going to be briefing cases. I did it through most of my second year, but now I just do not care anymore. Can't finish a brief. Do not sweat it (unless your school does that stupid on call thing), there is a 1 / however many kids in your class that you are going to be called on. You should like those odds.

--the pain of law school oci

OCI's suck. But having a job after you graduate most decidedly does not suck. So if your CSO is good for anything, they should give you an opportunity to practice with the people there or with local attorneys. Be self-aware. Practice. Call your mom on the phone and have her grill you with questions. Whatever you have to do to be ready. Even if it means not finishing a case brief.

--rod and todd's dad?

Flanders, Ned Flanders.

Tuesday, October 09, 2007

What are friends for?

Went of town this weekend to visit a kid I worked with over the summer and attend a football game. The weekend is pretty much what you would expect. There was a lot of drinking. I gave some shit to a guy on a street corner playing guitar and he called me an "asshole." There was the cab ride from hell back to my friend's place on Saturday night because neither my friend nor the cabbie could figure out where the hell we were supposed to go.

There was waking up at nine on Sunday, after four hours of sleep, and immediately cracking a beer. There was the cab ride to the pre-game bar where the cabbie called me a "vagina." The bar had the nicest bathroom I have ever been in, which is impressive considering it was a football Sunday. Then the game. Which was great, even with the $7 beers and 90 degree heat. Then there was some shit bar, which was quickly followed by a trip back to my friend's place to recover (mmmm, black coffee) and watch the Packers.

Even when you factor in the the Cubs getting swept on Saturday night (which resulted in more drinking than it should have) and the Packers loss on Sunday night (nolo perfecto), it was still a good weekend.

However, Monday around 1:30 a.m. it became great. Probably one of the best weekends ever. I should write to VH1 and try to get consideration.

See, after the Packers game we went to a strip club. Which, in and of itself, is really not that impressive, but we went because my friend's girlfriend wanted to go. She had never been before (to be fair, this was only my third trip (total, not just to this location)). We eventually got there (the story of how we got there is one for another day), and it was surprisingly pretty empty. I guess most people work on Mondays or something. They did have beer though. $1 for a cup. Free refills. And the cover was only $20. Not a bad deal. Figure three beers and I am even with what I paid at the game. But that is not the story.

The girlfriend had to get acquainted first. The two of them sat next to the stage while I hung back at the tables (all the view, none of the annoying expectation of money or talk). They come back over to me and are talking with a girl and want me to come up and get lapdances with them (not really with them, you know, I know you do). I do not really like lap dances (let us just say I do not gamble for the same reason I do not go to strip clubs), but I made a big deal about not wanting to get one, and yada yada. After getting the stink eye from them, I ran away to get a beer. But, I had a plan. The stripper girl they liked was over there, and when I went for my beer I asked her if she would do me a favor. She readily complied.

After the stripper grabbed her hot friend, the five of us headed to the "special room" (I would not call it VIP). So we get there, I hand over the money, and the strippers wisk the girlfriend away. My poor friend, a little slow on the uptake, was unable to understand for a minute why he was not getting lap dance.

Then he understood, and walked over for the close-up of two naked girls grinding on his girlfriend. I swear the smile on his face moved each of his ears back an inch.

But the best part, the girlfriend came back and said, "Oh my god! They touched my boobs in a way that I did not think they could be touched. I am a little wet right now." Then, sheepishly, "And I am not wearing panties."

I am a good friend.

Saturday, September 22, 2007

Law School Picks

In a new weekly column, I help you figure out what to place money on this week. Oh, and I am blatantly ripping off this idea from With Leather

Moot Court over LAW REVIEW--These are the big two. Get one on your resume and you have your ticket written. You would think anyway. The truth of the matter is, those who can talk a lot and sound smart while saying nothing will always do better than those who can just write well (like me, All writey no talky). No one cares about the proper way to cite an SEC no action letter, just if you can quickly respond to an irrelevant question without insulting a judge.

Believing What You See over Believing What You Hear--No longer do you have to give any credence to the crazy stories your friends tell you. Unless it shows up on youtube, it's a lie.

Church v. Sleeping: Even (pick 'em)--On the one hand, you better to get work on saving your soul before it is too late. On the other hand, if death row inmates think Jeebus will save them hours before they get fried, you can make up for a life of lying and deceit with a death-bed conversion too. Of course, those death row guys know the minute that they are going to die, you do not.

TAKING THE MPRE over not taking the MPRE--The deadline for the November MPRE is coming up this week (Tuesday). Just a friendly reminder if you are planning on taking it.

Survivorman Even Dog Whisperer--My two new favorite shows. I find myself watching a hell of a lot of Discovery Channel and National Geographic Channel lately. That might just be because I watch a shit ton of TV these days. I really need to start reading.

Talking About Most Anything Else over Talking About A Great Parking Spot You Once Had--I was just outside smoking a cigarette and this dude walked by with some chick and he was telling her how he got this great spot once down a couple blocks (I live by a lot of bars/restaurants). I heard about five seconds of the conversation and I was bored. Seriously, I hope that was a date, because he is screwed (I would think, granted I know nothing about women).

CUBS over Brewers--This is our year. I know it. Last time the Cubs were in the playoffs I spent a lot of money to see Mark Prior beat Greg Maddux. A lot has happened since then, but I bet that I could get some extra bucks from the student loan people at school if they knew it was for a Cubs World Series Ticket.

Thursday, September 20, 2007

The Coolest Thing You Will See All Day

Has not been posted yet. But keep checking this Link to see when Mute Math's performance on Kimmel from tonight is added.

Once it is added, I will post it in here, you know when I get up.

Update: Here it is.

Update #2: A better looking version of the video, plus . . .

Watch it in reverse, I mean go forward, I mean, whatever, watch it. Now.

And, if you were curious, this is just like the video for the song. Pretty much the same type of thing OK Go did with the treadmill video and the performance at the VMAs (or whatever award show it was). It still kicks ass though. And Mute Math rocks, buy their album, go see them live, and credit me.

Yeah, you are right, this song was on American Idol:

Does not lessen its rockability though

Sunday, September 16, 2007

Law School Picks

In a new weekly column, I help you figure out what to place money on this week. Oh, and I am blatantly ripping off this idea from With Leather

CRIMINAL LAW over Torts--Would you rather be a prosecutor with an outside shot at being governor or an ambulance chaser? Would you rather be a public defender who can get his loans forgiven or a guy who sues the Johnsons because they did not put a fence around their pool? It really comes down to the power to take away a man's freedom or the mere ability to bankrupt someone. Power wins. Everytime.

Bottles over CANS--Cans are just so . . ., I mean, it is the drunkness vehicle of the proletariat. We are better than that. This will make more sense with the next pick.

Drinking over STUDYING--You just got your student loan check. It is only a couple of weeks into the semester. There will be plenty of time to study in two months when you are broke. Go live it up. You earned it.

Morning Classes over AFTERNOON CLASSES--In the upset of the week, Morning Classes take it to the Afternoon classes. If you are going to be doing all this drinking, better to be out of class by noon. Then you can study until four, and drink until 11. Plus, being hungover in class makes you smarter. It is a fact.

CALL BACK INTERVIEW over On Campus Interview--Seriously, this is like the Bengals playing the Browns, a no-brainer. Wait, what? Still, the call back may mean talking with 400% more people, but at least you are on the radar. OCIs are the most nerve wracking thing in law school. With the Call Back, you do not have to feign confidence, you are actually confident. But don't be cocky you dick.

This Prank over ALL OTHER PRANKS--"Its Gold Jerry. Gold!"

Sunday, September 09, 2007

Best Weekend Ever

I woke up on Thursday feeling, not so good. Not so good in that I should have gotten up at 9, but felt like such a bag of ass that I lied in bed, not sleeping or watching tv, just lying there, until 1. You are probably thinking, "Great, a hangover story," but you are wrong. This was a day that is much more rare than days when I do not have at least a sip of beer.

I was sick. I never get sick. Maybe a cold here or there, but not sick sick. Not sick like my body is trying to tear itself apart from the inside out. This character trait was always a burden during elementary, junior high, and high school years ("hey look at me, I am perfect attendance guy! Blech"). Nowadays though, I appreciate it. So when I woke up feeling like my stomach was attempting to eject its contents through two orifices simultaneously, I was unsure how to react.

So, I did what always do, after all, I am perfect attendance guy (though not so much since high school, but for entirely different reasons); I went to class, did my homework, made pointless small talk, all while wondering if my body had hit the sharp upspike in its degeneration.

By the time Thursday night rolled around, I was proclaiming to myself that this was the worst pain ever. After futilely searching my room for drugs, any drug really, and finding none (admittedly, it was difficult for me to, you know, move, which seriously inhibited my scavenger hunt), I did the only logical thing. Fearing that I may pass out from the pain at any time, though the pain would prove to keep me awake the next night, I drove to nearest place that might have drugs. This happened to be a gas station. And they only sold Tylenol by the single (two capsule) packet. I did my best to articulate to the cashier that I wanted, no needed, some Tylenol (it was kept behind the counter), and she understood, asking me, "How many do you want? One, Two?"

I responded, "No, Four." They happily charged me for four packets. So when I got home, I ripped open two of the packages, took four Tylenol capsules, and fell into a merry sleep, for about five hours.

I awoke to more blinding pain. But, I took a couple more Tylenol, took a few deep breaths, and was able to do four hours of work for my externship (which I had planned to do on Thursday) as well as attend class. I made it home around five, took the last two tylenol, and laid in bed for the next five hours, in too much pain to move. Around Ten I discovered a bottle of Nyquil, left by a former roommate, and noticing that it contained acetaminophen, chugged half the bottle. I figured this would kill two birds with one stone. Pain relief, and I would fall asleep.

Sadly, I was mistaken. The pain permeated throughout my entire body, and by this time I had developed a severe case of the chills. I did eventually fall asleep, for about two hours, waking up at four a.m.

For some reason, in this damn shit town, there are no 24 hour stores that are relatively close to where I live (other than the gas station, but I was not prepared to revisit that debacle of a pain killing attempt, I needed to bring out the big guns), so I laid in bed for four hours, watching god knows what on tv to keep my mind off the pain, until the Walgreens opened up. At eight, I started getting out of bed, and by eight-fifteen I was completely out of bed, and after a few minutes to regain my equilibrium, I dressed and drove to the Walgreens, where I picked up Aleve and Tylenol PM (the big guns, like I said). Got back home, popped four Aleve, and within an hour I was off to sleep, not to wake up until the Aleve wore off and the pain returned.

To me, Aleve is the best of the bunch. Naproxen Sodium beats acetaminophen any day of the week. I was knocked out for six hours (though sheer exhaustion may have played apart).

So to cut Saturday a bit short (you earned the respite), more chills, probable fever, Tylenol PM did not put me to sleep, Michigan Lost Again (yay), sharp pains running throughout my body whenever I moved (though breathing was painless, small favors), and once wondering if putting a bullet in my head would be more painful than this (I mean sure, I was in pain, over a long period of time, but a bullet to the brain has to cause excruciating pain, if only for a moment. Is there a way to chart various pains by severity and duration?).

So by Sunday morning, around 6, I finally had enough. I decided I needed to figure out what was wrong with me. So I logged onto WebMD. I have always been skeptical of WebMD. There are all of these arcane diseases on there, and virtually every entry ends "Consult with your local Physician Immediately." To me, it always seemed like a racket in order to scare the shit out of people, and force them to schedule appointments with doctors because they think their cold is encephalitis. But I was at my wits end. Apparently, my body was not going to take care of this one on its own.

So I wrapped myself in a blanket, and began surfing around the webmd site, then shed the blanket and cross referenced what I had found with wikipedia in my boxers, then re-wrapped myself in the blanket and did a few google searches to confirm that my self-diagnosis was correct. All the signs pointed down the same road. I had to go to the emergency room.

It is not that I do not like Doctors, it is just that Doctors represent mortality. As Dr. Cox from Scrubs put, Doctors are only there to delay the inevitable. As such, other than routine physicals, I have never been to the family physician. I have, however, been to the emergency twice before. Once when I thought I fractured that protruding bone on one's ankle (caused by a hockey puck, and it was not fractured), and once when I got side swiped nearly flush on the driver's side door, while I was driving, and spun off the road (I got to ride in ambulance, but the only damage was a black bruise about the size of Shaq's handspan). Really, I just like to think of myself as indestructible.

My primary concern with all of this is the fact that I have no insurance. (First time in the ER, I had insurance, second time I did not, but the crasher's insurance paid my bills). ER visits can be expensive, and I am not sure if I can get more student loans to pay outstanding hospital bills. You are probably thinking, hey, why didn't you just go to the Student Health Clinic like a normal person? Well, two reasons. First, the doctor was going to have to cut me. I do not know if the clinic cuts people. Second, there was no way I could make it through another day without taking ten Aleve at a time, every two hours (and I am very conscious of not overworking my liver). The last thing I needed was to head over to the student clinic, only to be told I had to go to the emergency room.

So I went to the ER, and they took care of me. I am perfectly healthy now, with only slight residual pain. I find it odd that they wrote me a prescription for Vicodin, considering the pain I am feeling now is not even in the same stratosphere as the pain I was feeling over the course of three days. I have never taken a Vicodin before, and I am a bit scared too. I might enjoy it too much. But anyway, fret not, I will be fine. And I suppose this means that I am not due to be sick again until 2033, when lung cancer and liver disease launch a two front attack on my innards.

Oh, and if you made it this far, let me share a quick story from today. It is very odd to say "Thank You" to the first man who has ever stuck a finger all the way up your asshole. I appreciate what he did for me in curing my disease, which was what I was really thanking him for. But when I saw him as I walked out the ER and croaked a thank you, I could not help but think that he took my anal cherry. (oh and ignore these next paragraphs, I know this long and I do not want to give the satisfaction of hearing that anecdote to those who only skimmed).

[The Rest of this entry is all fiction. I was going to delete it, but what the hell. Probably the best fiction I will ever write. 5/21/06]

The little hospital bedroom is a lonely place. It was in the ER, so no tv, no beer, and nothing on the walls to read. There was a computer, but it did not accept my pathetic attempt at a login and password (seriously, Hippocratic and Oath not working? WTF?). They had already dragged me through every fucking room they had in the ward, despite my repeated protests that I had no insurance. The Doctor was a surly fellow, likely hitting the tail end of his 36 hour shift. He did not have time for me and my problems and I sure as hell did not have time for them imprisoning me here for seven hours. Shit, I could have done a weeks worth of homework with all the downtime that Dr. Surly had bestowed upon me. Yet here I stood, bored from sitting, my ass showing through the back of my gown because I was too pissed off to bother to tie it again for the umpteenth time. Let them see my ass, serves them right. God I hate doctors.

Dr. Surly finally returns, the frown permanently embedded on his face. He beckons me to follow him, and we take off on another jaunt down the now familiar hallway. I wonder why a guy like this ever wanted to be a doctor. There is no bedside manner at all. Must be why he is stuck doing the ER rounds. He probably dreamed of a successful general practitionership, only to see it dashed in a few months when Dr. Nice Guy from across town starting requesting all of his patients' files. Serves him right I guess.

He leads me to a room you see all the time on the medical shows. The X-Ray room. Not really the X-Ray room I guess, they already X-rayed me four times. I suppose this is the X-Ray viewing room. With the bright hot lights the size of a a good Monet. He sticks my four X-Rays up into the the little clasp at the top and begins mumbling some nonsense. I am checked out (not literally) and ready to go home.

Then, he looks at me, and the sadness I see in his eyes snaps me back to attention. My body goes numb, my eyes blur, I feel like I am going faint. I know this is serious, I can tell by his eyes. He is not Surly, just a little depressed. He points to something on one of the X-Rays and circles it with a red writing utensil.

"Son," he says, "I am very sorry. I think you might have cancer."

My world goes black.

Thursday, August 30, 2007

Yay, I Have a Job

So, the next nine months are pretty much pointless. Hazah.

(except to my loan providers, they are very happy)

Thursday, August 23, 2007


I saw this bumper sticker today: "Caution: In case of the rapture, this vehicle will be unmanned."

I think that this is mighty presumptuous of the driver. Now, I am not one who knows God personally, or pretends to have any sort of relationship with him, but does God like this kind of arrogance? The driver is basically saying, yes I am perfect, or if not perfect, I understand God well enough to know what he will deem acceptable my behavior which will allow me to be accepted into heaven for the afterlife.

Shit, I have never been that confident about anything, let alone knowing with certainty that I will not spend eternity burning in the hell-fire.

My understanding of the Bible is sketchy at best, but I am fairly certain that only one man ever lived a sinless life, and it sure as hell was not the driver of that truck. Granted, from what I have been told, you can be the most philanthropic man on the planet, but the gates do not open unless you believe in God and that his son Jeebus died for your sins.

But what is belief? Does one moment of doubt in the existence of God disqualify you? Does cursing God once on your worst day disqualify you? Are aboriginal tribes that stick their historical beliefs denied in the face of their rejection of Christian missionaries?

I am not attempting to debate religion, I already know what the answers are to those questions. I was just surprised that anyone would presume to anticipate what God would or would not do. Sure you can hope, but do you ever really know?

Besides, the rapture occurred in 1983, right after Lotus 1-2-3 was released.

(oh, and I have never read the "Left Behind" series, but I did read a book called 666 about 10 years ago. Very fascinating and filled with untoward hilarity.)


I saw this bumper sticker today: "Caution: In case of the rapture, this vehicle will be unmanned."

I think that this is mighty presumptuous of the driver. Now, I am not one who knows God personally, or pretends to have any sort of relationship with him, but does God like this kind of arrogance? The driver is basically saying, yes I am perfect, or if not perfect, I understand God well enough to know what he will deem acceptable behavior to be accepted into heaven for the afterlife. Shit, I have never been that confident about anything, let alone knowing with certainty that I will not spend eternity burning in the hell-fire.

My understanding of the Bible is sketchy at best, but I am fairly certain that only one man ever lived a sinless life, and it sure as hell was not the driver of that truck. Granted, from what I have been told, you can be the most philanthropic man on the planet, but the gates do not open unless you believe in God and that his son Jeebus died for your sins.

But what is belief? Does one moment of doubt in the existence of God disqualify you? Does cursing God once on your worst day disqualify you? Are aboriginal tribes that stick their historical beliefs denied in the face of their rejection of Christian missionaries?

I am not attempting to debate religion, I already know what the answers are to those questions. I was just surprised that anyone would presume to anticipate what God would or would not do. Sure you can hope, but do you ever really know?

Besides, the rapture occurred in 1983, right after Lotus 1-2-3 was released.

(oh, and I have never read the "Left Behind" series, but I did read a book called 666 about 10 years ago. Very fascinating and filled with untoward hilarity.)

Tuesday, July 24, 2007


I went to go hear testimony before a subcommittee at the House offices today. If you have ever flipped to C-Span while fervently searching for scrambled porn (does that still exist?) you were likely bored by the droll monotone that was elucidated by all uninterested parties. I hit the channel up button when I get to C-Span too. It really is "sooooooo boooooooooooooring." The only two times I ever watched C-Span for more than thirty seconds in my life was for Roberts' and Alito's confirmation hearings. And really only because I was about to be or in Law School when they went down, so I figured I had some sort of CLE obligation to watch it.

But the live show of congressional hearings, is well, one word sums it up: "Damn."

Actually, it needs a couple more words: "Damn, this is so fucking boring."

If you survived my rambling post from last night, you know I was dead tired today. Hearing people talk about boring ass shit did not help. Sure it only lasted 105 minutes; wait only? I think I fell asleep for a couple minutes in the first half hour. So the point is, Seeing the shit they show on C-Span live, not really worth it.

However, in my case, once I got my little nap in, I was able to focus enough to pay attention and be interested in seeing Government in Action. My favorite part was when a Rep. would ask some probing questions, and then when his or her time was up, state, "For the record, I want to make clear I do not support [people breaking the fucking law]."

It was an hour and forty-five minutes of complete unadulterated politicking.

And I do not just mean by the Reps. Of the witnesses, three were government officials and two were "CEOs" of some type of organizations, but I will refer to them as Lobbyists because that is what they were. Hell, one of the witnesses was a forming member of the damn subcommittee. The government officials gave straight forward, non-bull shit answers, while the lobbyists seemed to enjoy waxing poetic on off-topic social ills.

If this sort of thing is news to you, I am sorry. It just made me feel like giving myself papercuts on my eyes when it was all over.

So, to make this not a completely worthless post, on a completely unrelated note; this guy is my new hero.

Monday, July 23, 2007


I have been going non-stop since Wednesday. I am so tired, the only reason I am typing is because I have an unopened beer in front of me. I refuse to let it go to waste.

Last wednesday was a softball game. Lots of drinking was involved. This was exacerbated by the fact that the team we played was full of dicks. See, I play in the House Softball league. Implicit in that should be a sense of morality. Mainly because we have no umps, the team at bat puts out third and first base coaches who act as umpires for close plays or foul balls. In the first inning they gave themselves two calls, which I could tell from right center were clearly wrong. This helped them wrack up eight runs in the first inning, and when we went down in order in teh bottom of the first, it was clearly realized that they were the better team. The whole thing reeked of them being unsure of our abilities, so they tried to give themselves every advantage. I am not sure if they actually worked for a House Rep. but rest assured he is not getting my vote.

Anyway, we got demolished that game. It was humbling really (granted we were missing our two best players and I was unable to perform my usual pregame ritual of a pitcher of beer plus one with another player on the team), and even though I flat out sucked, it did not make a difference. Sure, they injured two of our pitchers with shots back up the middle, both of whom had to sit out the rest of the game and drink beer while watching, but it left us a player short. And to be fair, we were screwed going in, they just screwed us more. So after the game we enetered a new post-shellacking ritual; getting more hammered. This was a great idea to me. I love drinking. Unfortunately, I had to drive to the game, so I was faced with the choice of getting home safely or getting more to drink.

There were other things at play. My sister was flying into town that night. She had a flight cancelled then another delayed. I had no clue when she was getting in. I figured that since the bar was closer to the airport than my house, she should meet me there. So it was on. After all, she could always drive me home.

So the beer had two dollar drafts, drinking ensued, good times were had by all (it was a pretty good bar, up near the top of my list). My sister showed and she started drinking (spending 8 hours in an airport to make a 45 minute flight does that to you). And when all was said and done, I had to drive home. Granted, I was not smashed. I probably would have been legal to drive in some states. I am not sure what the deal is in DC with the blood alcohol percentage. But I had to work the next day, so I had to get my car home (completely logical at the time). It was an uneventful drive, except for one highlight. I pulled up behind a cop car at a stoplight. There was a car next to the cop in the lane to the right. With the light red, the other car just decided to go. Through the red light. If I knew who that moron was, I would send a gift basket for allowing me to not have to worry about that cop.

So my sister and I got home and talked all sorts of family matters until 2 am when I decreed that I had to sleep. With no open beds in my house, I gave her mine and took the couch. I somehow woke up on time after 4 hours of sleep and made it to work on time.

On Thursday another 3/6ths of my family flew into town. This night was not as exciting, but it involved me being dead tired and nine o'clock reservations at a great restaurant. I drank more, got to bed at one.

Friday was more of the same. Except that I had a Bar-B-Q for my folks and sisters at my house because they all wanted to see it. This involved more copious amounts of drinking. Especially considering I had four beers in the 45 minutes between the time I got home and my parents showed up. I had to prepare myself you know. Loosen up a bit. Or whatever. So Friday was just another night of a lot of drinking.

Usually I catch up on sleep on the weekends. It is not unusual for me to sleep until 1. Not this weekend. Had to get my still-drunk ass out of bed early to drive down to Charlottesville VA for a wedding. Which should have been no problem, expect that I-95 is the fifth circle of hell. Nothing like taking three hours to go 26 miles. DC Metro area, got to love it.

Wedding=Lots o' Drinking. It is a rule or something. The 13th Commandment I think. My best friend from the time you can actually have a best friend as a young person until I was about 10 was getting married. I pretty much completely lost touch with her over the years, but I still her sporadically every four or five years. It has always been a little awkward for me because I am pretty awkward. But this was great. Maybe because I realized I would never be with her, not that it was ever a possibility or what I wanted, but still, she was the first best friend I ever had, and nothing can ever get in the way of that (she was a tomboy, we used to play tackle football. It was awesome, before I realized just how awesome playing tackle football with a chick was). So I drank at the wedding, and did a lot of white-guy dancing, though I don't think I have ever been to a wedding where there was not one single women within the relative age bracket of the nuptial couple. That may have been the reason I danced. But at least I was not so drunk that I did not get a dance with the Bride towards the end of the night. All in all, it was nice, a little sad, but very merry.

But a goodnight begets a bad morning. I was not too hung over thanks to the fine pillows at Fairfield Inn (like sleeping, err, passing out on a cloud). My little sis (she is 20) and I drove back to DC in my car, and along the way we saw signs for Montpelier, the home of James Madison. We stopped, and it was awesome. I am too tired to type up the details, but they are in the process of restoring his home, so the entire thing was a construction zone. Which is much cooler than you think. They are restoring the home using the house building methods of the early 1800s. Seeing it in action was pretty cool. Plus the estate is fucking huge, and has the most beautiful view. I have not seen Monticello or Mount Vernon, and I can assume that they are similar, though fully restored. Thus I recommend checking out Madison's house in the next year or so before they finish. My lil sis and I have already decided that we are going back to Montpelier in 2009 when it is finished and spending an entire day there in order to take in everything. I suppose that means I should not bother going to Monticello or Mount Vernon unless I have a day to spend there also, but I am thinking that is not such a bad idea.

After a day of driving, I went out with my folks for more beers and eventually got home around 9. Sadly, I had no clean clothes for today, so I had to do laundry when I got home, and had to force myself to stay awake until the washing machine ran its course and I could stuff my pants in the dryer.

I was dead tired at work. Thankfully, I really had nothing to do except think. So I did the only thing that can expand my mind at work, surfed the web. That lead me to a couple of breakthroughs on a project. But then, one of my nine bosses came in to talk about a memo I wrote. I think he just wanted to see if I could bring the goods, so he had me send him a copy of the memo I was working on. I rewarded him with 10,000 words of IRAC goodness. So when he called me into his office to talk about my memo, he had not even read the damn thing. Which would be fine, except he prefaced his comments by stating that he learned a lot from my memo because he has not worked on this type of problem before (the memo is for a different attorney, he just wanted to take a look). So we get to talking, and he begins discussing something that seems sort of trivial to me, but is important in the grand scheme. In fact, it was something that I paid no attention to because it was a first draft. He was asking about if I properly framed the issue for my memo. I did not even know what the fuck I wrote for the issue, or even when I wrote it. It could have been first or last, I had no clue. Anyway, I am not going to bitch, I just want to say that critical thinking and verbal defense (I had to defend what I wrote, mostly because I am still unclear on the point he was trying to make after he explained it three times, but it is not a memo for him anyway), is not something I am skilled at when extremely tired.

Parents are still in town tonight. Guess what we did? Went out to eat and drank more beers. Then went to a bar and drank some beers. I eventually peeled away around 8:30 because I thought I had to do more laundry tonight. I did not, so I drank more.

Really, the only reason I am still up is because I have nothing to do tomorrow. Tomorrow is field trip day, and all I have to do is wear a suit and look pretty. I am confident in my ability to the former, now that I know I have clean enough clothes.

So whats the point? Hardcore drinking five days in a row without much sleep is getting the best of me. I think I will go to sleep at 7 pm tomorrow. It shall be glorious.

At least until I wake up at 11 unable to fall back asleep. But I will cross that bridge when I get to it.

Wednesday, June 27, 2007

They Ruined Deadspin

Last Week in Review:

Mon: Nationals game. Copious amounts of expensive beers
Tues: Softball game. This other kid on the team and myself went to a bar before the game and proceeded to split a pitcher and then drank another beer each. In an hour. That is four beers kids. We then went to the ol' ballpark and I drank much more alcohol. After the game (it was our first win of the season) I went to a bar and drank more. Got home, and had another two beers. It was a good night.
Wed: [cannot remember, something happened that involved more drinking. Probably bad that I forget.]
Thurs: Went to the Holocaust Museum. Shit. It is pretty intense. Not as intense as I thought it would be (it is a family museum), but from the get-go, when they over-crowd an elevator to take you to the beginning of the permanent exhibit (you can imagine where your thoughts are). On the whole, the pre-war and post-war focus lessens the impact of the actual atrocities (not by much though), but bigotry takes on an entirely new meaning. Additionally, quietest museum I have ever been too. Adds to the intensity. Regardless of my qualms with the museum, I highly recommend everyone who comes to DC to visit it.
Fri: Happy Hour with some folks from work, which degenerated into me and another intern trying to figure out where the hell to go to have some fun. Once we found a place to go, my hatred of the majority of law school students was fully realized.

See, on Friday I ended up hanging out with a bunch of University of Michigan Law students. I am not sure exactly where that school ranks on the US News list, but it is at least top 20, if not top ten. Anyway, I was blessed with the opportunity to spend about an hour and half with these future pillars of the legal community. It took about ten minutes before they 1) annoyed the crap out of me; and 2) realized they were "better" than me.

To be fair, I was hanging out with 1L's (or what the registrar calls "rising 2L's). I engaged in a law related philosophical discussion with a couple of them, but once they found out I did not have instant recall of Carroll Towing, they decided not to talk to me anymore. First off, I hate torts. Why would i bother to remember anything from that class. Second of all, it is 11:30 on a friday at a bar. Sure I will engage in all sorts of crazy legal analysis, but I cannot be expected to cite sources. Fuck that shit. See, I go to a bar so I don't have to cite sources (unless it is, "that was in Thomas' dissent).

Granted, I am pretty discriminating about the folks I am friends with (the kid from U of M that I intern with is cool, the others are just schlubs). But these folks just annoyed me. I left within an hour. I'd rather sit in my room alone and watch the Buffy episode "The Body" while drinking beer. It wasn't arrogance so much that turned me off (after all, I acknowledge that I am an arrogant SOB), it was the sense of entitlement. Shit, the 1L class at UM had 25 people at this bar in DC. I could gather all the people from my school at a bar in DC and I would be pretty lonely (because the other person from there out here doesn't really like me).

The kid from UM that I intern with knows that he is lucky to be where he is. After his 1L year, he is in a great spot. He is very self-aware. Not only that, he understands the system but does not give into its arbitrary manipulations. Its not like I am fellating him, he just lacks the thing that annoys me most about law school students.

Anyways, back to the point of this post referenced in the title. Deadspin changed its layout. It changed its layout for one reason. More page views = more dollars. I cannot argue with that logic, but the sad fact remains, I will not be visting deadspin 32 times a day anymore. I will just check it out through google reader. Their loss.

Friday, June 01, 2007

I Love Morning Exams

Have you ever had everything you ever believed in taken away from you in mere moments? Had your whole world, your entire structure of faith, demolished like the Kingdome?

If you have seen Firefly (yes I am obsessed), after the first five minutes of the [real] pilot, you see Mal's entire world come crashing down. And if you have seen Serenity (the movie based on that failed TV Show)* you remember the last five minutes of the movie, where the villain has everything he ever believed in torn asunder:

Mal: If I ever see you again, I'll kill you
Villain: You won't. There is nothing left to see.**

Like them, I have been rocked to my core. Yes indeed, everything has changed. Those morning exams, which I dreaded, and force me into 3-4 hours a sleep before each one, garnered me the best cumulative semester's worth of grades I have gotten, ever (and it is not like I just had more time to study, I had five exams, just like first year). I am not trying to be arrogant, ok maybe a little, but this is striking as completely strange.

But after reflecting on this for a while, I have come up with a few reasons how this occurred:

  1. I had one class that was absolutely worthless. Really, it was worthless. I am not a better nor worse person for having taken it and my knowledge based did not even increase negligibly. I described this class as such to several people, and had this class described as such by several people. In fact, for the first time in my life, I actually spent time on the class evaluation describing everything that was wrong with it and how to improve it. The fifteen minutes I spent on that were more valuable than the 20+ hours spent in class. Hopefully this helps the future students. But anyway, no one cared about this class. Either did I, but I still studied for it (albeit half-heartedly) as if it was my favorite class ever. That was probably my worst performance on an exam ever, but I did pretty well because apparently no one else cared either. God bless the apathetic law student.***
  2. Paranoia. The sheer fear of morning exams prompted me study smrt-ly. Usually my study time is spent surfing for porn, playing stupid online games, reading boring websites I would never otherwise read (like mine!), watching TV, and studying. Granted, not in that order or a proportion that would dictate that order (though my porn viewing does increase quite a bit during finals time). However, during this exam weeks I pretty much cut out the stupid games, the TV, and general internet surfing. This created at least two extra hours a day to study, during which time I actually studied. So the fear of morning exams, added to my usual fear of failure and overall insecurities about my abilities played a big role in my achievement of greatness.
  3. The fact that everyone else was a second semester 2L or 3L. The second semester 2Ls have been through the rigors, and everyone pretty much knows where they stand. Plus, they are sick of this shit and looking forward to starting their summer job. Yeah, you all know how it is. I am the aberration. Finals still scare me. Furthermore, the 3Ls just do not care anymore, so that helps. Three cheers for my classmates!
  4. I am actually at my most productive and focused when I am tired. I cannot explain it, that is just the way it works. When the time comes for intense focus and total recall, I would rather be dog tired than working with my full (potentially) mentally faculties. In the words of the Who, "I cant explain"
So that's it. Thats the list. Regardless, it is not like my grades were overwhelmingly better than any previous semester, they just turned out to be slightly better. Which still came as a shock, you know, because of the paranoia.

And if you made it this far, let me just apologize for the lack of updates recently. It is not that there is a shortage of things to write, it is just that I do not have a whole lot of time, which is shocking considering there is $30 in my account. So I will be getting a lot busier once I have money and, you know, can do stuff. But fear not, good stuff on the way (I hope).

*if that doesn't convince you to rent the series through Netflix, I do not know what will, come on, they made a freaking movie about a failed TV Show

**nice way to bookend the Firefly/Serenity universe, eh?

***apathetic at least to one exam. I understand they have bigger fish to fry.

Monday, May 21, 2007

DC Dispatches ## 1, 2 and 3

My internet has been buggy. So this is a recap of my first week in DC:


I have been in DC for just under 19 hours and I just saw my first war protest march. At least I assume it was. I was taking a smoke break and was not really focusing on their chanting, but I did see signs that said something about Iraq and one that said "Impeach Bush."
I won't lie, I voted for Bush **cough**twi**cough**ce**cough** I really wish I could have that second one back. I would have voted for myself. (Note to reader, In the 2000 election my vote counted, not only because Bush won, but because it was a pretty close race in the state where I voted. In 2004, I voted in IL, where my vote did not matter at all. I only mention this, because I shudder to think what would have happened had Gore been in office on 9/11. Short story, he would have had to prove he was a tough guy, and would have bombed someone by 9/17. Also, it shows that I hate politics (now anyway)).

DC has also made me more political. Please ignore it, I talk mostly out of my ass. What do you expect, they give me a free paper every morning when I get on the Metro; it makes me feel learned.


I fucking hate IL. If I still lived there, all would be grand. But I do not. I go to school out of state, and now I am in DC. I still maintain my IL residency because god knows where I will be in a year. And with living at my parents still a possibility, I have not bothered to change the tags on my car or get a new driver's license.

Contrary to what the IL court system may think (anyone know a good traffic lawyer in the Downers Grove area? I have a court date for speeding in a construction zone in June (yes, it is a must appear violation, and I already continued it once since my first court date was the week before finals)), I qualified for the safe driver renewal. This means I send them a check, and they send me back a sticker. A sticker to put on the back of my current license.

Now the problem is that my license expired in February. I got the sticker, but the sticker goes on the back of the license. Many, many retailers (I still lack the balls to head into the shady "Cold Beer" store on the corner) have begun looking at the expiration date on the license. Not just the birthdate matters anymore.

So the most recent tale of woe. After a particularly fulfilling day where I did jack shit for eight hours, and got paid for it, then headed to VA for some cheap smokes ($22 for 10 packs! OK, it was buy one get one free, but still, awesome), and finished up my day by walking around the Washington Monument, WWII Memorial, and the Lincoln Memorial (if you ever go, just study his face, his shoulders and his posture. Atlas revisited). With blisters on my feet, I headed to the nearest Giant food store for a nice six pack of bud light. Then I went to checkout.

I guess in DC you always have to show your license. So as I bought my beer, I did. Uh-Oh, my license is expired. I tried to explain to her how the stupid auto-renewal system works. She had none of that and went to see a manager. Yep, I am now the ass holding up the express line. I am sorry to all the folks behind me. I am legit. I was not trying to scam beer. And if I was, it would not be a six pack of Bud Light.

Anyway, after talking with the manager for five minutes, they summoned me over to speak my peace. I do not think that the manager bought my explanation, but she certainly accepted my male-pattern baldness. And I was just about to whip out my law school ID and threaten to sue them. Oh well.

Anyway, that link above, I am printing that page out tomorrow at work and carrying it around with me from now on. This shit happens all the time. It sucks.


Finals killed me. And I am broke. I went straight from finals to packing to taking a trip out of town to driving to DC. This first week was not exhausting, but I was freaking exhausted. I slept at least 24 hours over the weekend (not counting Sunday night). It was glorious, as sleep usually is. So I did not do anything fun over the weekend.

I am also broke, which seriously puts a crimp into having fun. I do not get a paycheck for another two and a half weeks, so it appears that I will be maxing out another credit card (that makes 4! God Bless America and the ability to live beyond your means) before I get to that point. Ahh well, fun will be forthcoming. I hope at least.

Sunday, May 06, 2007

A Diamond is Forever, but My Salary is Exponentially Fleeting

The other night I got into a debate over how much an engagement ring is supposed to cost. I remained steadfast in my opinion that it is two month's salary while she was adamant (likely for personal reasons) that it was three. After getting no where with hearsay and conjecture, I did what any good little law student does.

I researched. Lexis and Westlaw were no help, so I used the second best thing. Google.

So I found this page, which pretty much confirmed what I already knew, that it is two months salary not three.

There are also numerous articles and videos detailing what a scam the diamond trade is, but we already knew this. They keep supply (what is available for sale) low and pay miners 2 cents hour, yada, yada. That ain't my fight (maybe one day, but not today).

However being brainwashed is my problem. Over the course of my investigation, I discovered a video on youtube that is a DeBeers commercial from the 1990s. Here it is:

Yeah, its nice, classic DeBeers, but did you carch the end?

Here is the screenshot of the last scene (click on it for large size):

See what it says there? "How else could a month's salary last a lifetime?"

When the fuck did it become two months salary? Was this a cheap ring? WTF? You cannot arbitrarily change your slogan to brainwash me into spending an extra couple grand. Was this youtube doctored? I need answers because I am pissed off about this.

However, I know this is a losing battle, because I am screwed either way (if I can by a cheap ring I end up married; and if I refuse to overpay for a ring, I end up cold and alone. Lose/Lose). To quote Ron White, the actual slogan for DeBeers should just be, "Diamonds . . . That'll Shut Her Up."

Tuesday, May 01, 2007

And I Will Play Your Game Beneath The Spin Light

Morning Exams will be the death of me.

For the first three semesters of law school, I have had afternoon exams. Now they decided to change things up, and force me to take my exams in the morning. As has been well documented here, I am not a morning person. This causes a huge problem. See, my brain refuses to function for the first two hours of the day. My notes from my morning classes past are a dyslexic hodgepodge of incoherency. So briefing cases my first three semesters was actually worthwhile, at least for a couple of my classes.

The week before exams I practiced getting up early, i.e. earlier than I absolutely had to (for instance, a 9 o'clock class means I get out of bed at 8:45 because it takes it takes me five minutes to piss, brush my teeth, and throw on the dirty clothes laying on the floor, five minutes to drive to school, and five minutes to walk to class). Needless to say, it was an epic failure. They say practice makes perfect, but what happens when you utterly fail at practicing?

I will enlighten you. My first exam was a four-hour furtive flailing fast finger fest (whatever the hell that means, I felt like throwing in some alliteration. This is why I am not a poet). Because that exam started at 8:30, I deduced that I had to be up by 5:30 a.m. in order for my brain to function properly by test time. That is all well and good, except I did not fall asleep until are 3:30 and my alarm started going off around 4:45. But, the important thing is that I was up and moving by 5:30, and around 7:30 the fog lifted from inside my cranium and was able to take the test and remember most of what I needed to.

So I had another exam this morning. Same scenario. I had to to get up early, blah, blah. I think I was asleep by 2:30 (or shortly after the end of the first episode of the second set of Futureama). Except I could not be roused this morning. The 96 alarms I had set just weren't cutting it, and I finally gained cognizance around 6 a.m.

You are probably thinking, hey 6 a.m., that isn't too bad. Well, smart-ass, I had planned on studying since I did not know this shit at all, and was desirous to get up around 4:30. When that did not happen, I said to myself, "Screw it, I just won't go to the exam this morning."

So I did not.

I am taking it tomorrow, and it should be all good. It does screw up my exam schedule a bit, but I should be O.K. Plus, with the two hours of sleep I got last night, I plan on passing out around 7 pm tonight, and getting up around 3. Ahhh, 8 hours. That will be nice. Hopefully I can keep this schedule up, and I might be able to survive the next week. Only four exams left!

Oh, and a couple random notes. This is the best song not created by Brand New, LBC or OLP, that I have heard since Jet Black New Year by Thursday (so I am a little late on the bandwagon, but at least I am on it now).

Second, in the purported best of the blog in the post below, they are listed in no particular order, so if you started at the top, and thought they sucked, you were probably right. But if I could make two recommendations, the New Years story and the Normal Thursday story, while I have no clue if they are any good, were my two favorite to write up.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Just What We Needed . . .

So I am working on my Con Law Outline and I get to Locke v. Davey. Rather than reading it again, I head over to Wikipedia to get the holding.

For Background, this case involved a kid who wanted to be a preacher and was enrolling in college to study theology. The state took back the scholarship it gave him, because it violated the state's constitutional provision of absolute division between church and state.

The Supreme Court upheld the decision of the state. And, probably because of that, the fucking kid decided not to be a preacher. I will let Wikipedia explain:

"Joshua Davey, the student who lost this case, enrolled in Harvard Law School in 2003, shortly before the case was argued before the Supreme Court.[2][3] He graduated in 2006, having served as a managing editor for the Harvard Journal of Law & Public Policy in his final year.[4]"

Just what we need, more lawyers and less preachers.

Thursday, April 19, 2007

A Short Guide to Taking Finals

In lieu of actually studying for finals, I decide to write up some guidelines on how I take exams. I don't care whether it helps anyone or not, I just do not feel like outlining.

Go To Class

By now it may be to late to reconcile this, but for future reference, the best thing you can do is to go to class, and rather than playing some stupid flash game online, actually take notes and pay attention to what the professor says.

In class I do not take notes so much as take dictation. I do this because when I go through my notes to prepare my outline, I have the Profs terms and phraseology, which can then be replicated on the exam.


Different methods work for different people. One thing I do is when I am incorporating a rule from a case into my outline, I include a brief description of the pertinent facts because it gives the rule context. Then, when writing the essay it is easier to understand how the rule relates to given facts. Of course, this blows up my outline, as they generally end up being forty pages or so.

I also do not outline per se, since I do not use the standard outline format. I incorporate the headings from the book, but write everything in sentence format rather than shorthand. It makes the process of outlining a bitch, but at least for me it pays off.

Taking The Exam

Despite what people tell you, there is a silver bullet for an answering an essay question. Simply apply the facts in the question to the law.

I am amazed that some people (during an open book exam) will write out an answer to a question, and when something in the facts relates to what they wrote, they copy the stock answer. This I do not understand in the slightest. You have to approach the exam in such a way that everyone knows the law. Once you pass the bar, each lawyer is entrusted with knowing the law. Profs write exams the same way. Everyone should be on equal footing from the standpoint of knowing what the law is. A final exam is not a treatise on the law. It is taking the law (which all fifty kids in your class know) and applying it to the facts. Hence, the exam is all about the facts. I spend much more time writing about what facts are important, and why they are important than just regurgitating the law.

Obviously, the law is important, but the facts are just as important.

My second point in taking an exam is that, despite what the Profs may say, length is important. Explaining a little bit about why something isn't applicable may just get you a slightly higher grade. Granted, you can't just write for the sake of writing, it has to be correct and relevant, but if you have extra time, it never hurts to show off how much you know by adding something that does not really add value to your answer, but distinguishes you slightly from everyone else.

In terms of length, I usually shoot for 1,000 words per hour. Sure, 16 words per minute is not that much, but when you factor in the time to read the question, it bumps up to about 25 wpm. I am not sure if this is a lot, a little or whatnot. For me, it is just how things generally turn out (though I generally end up writing more than that, and on occasion less. And I know this because I take my exams on the computer. For you with the bluebooks, you are fucked).

I also recommend taking a few minutes after reading the question to map out in your head or on paper, the general structure of your essay. What point you will address first, the law, etc. I am sure that no one just jumps in and starts writing, but closing your eyes for a minute, and just thinking about the question cannot hurt.

Also, read the question and the facts twice. It is never good to miss a key fact.

Additionally, when you first get the exam, make sure you know how many questions there are. I took an exam last semester that, for whatever reason, I thought had only 3 questions, and when I was halfway through the third question, with about 30 minutes left to take the test, discovered that there was a fourth. I still got a decent grade, but I do not think I ever typed so fast in my life. I am sure that typos abound.

Some people suggest rereading your answer when you are finished. I don't. Have faith, you probably got everything the first time. By rereading you are just wasting time.

Unless you have time to reread, but I still do not recommend it. You look much cooler leaving the exam 30 minutes early. Plus, there is the inevitable second guessing yourself. You will do enough of that after the exam, no need to do it during the exam. Be a Romantic, its more fun that way.

As far as multiple guess exams go, I cannot help you. I think multiple guess should be banned in law school, and I have no interest in taking such exams. I usually do not do so well on those. However, I do recommend that you bring in a Magic 8-Ball to help you on the ones you are not too sure about.

I think is all that I have. These have just been my opinion, I disclaim all the standard warranties that are guaranteed by anonymous blogs. Any questions, let me know.

(Also, I have never taken one of those, "How To Do Well On Exams" seminars. I came up with all this, on my own, right now, while flipping between Hockey and the Cubs, so the advice above is not likely to be all that good anyway)

Friday, April 13, 2007


Remember in junior high and high school, when you had to take all those bullshit classes where you would say to yourself, "When am I ever going to need this?"

Though I know I learned the difference between "genus" and "species" at one point in my life, I am chagrined to mention that I just had to look up the difference on Wikipedia.

Who the hell knew it would at one point become relevant? I thought it only applied to animals.

Thursday, April 12, 2007

It is Things Like This That Explain My Male-Pattern Baldness

You know I love hockey. If you scroll down, you will see about 20 youtube hockey videos in one post. And I watched about 100 to narrow it down to those 20.

So you can undoubtedly understand that I had hockey on while doing my reading last night, until I realized I was doing too much watching and not enough reading (even though the TV was on mute), and forced myself to turn off the TV. Hey, you should forgive, I was tired and had a lot of work to do. The Pens were getting crushed anyway. Much later, I flipped the TV back on and saw that Vancouver was up on Dallas 4 to 2. I think it was the third period, and the Canucks have Luongo, so I figured the game was over, finished up my reading and watched an episode of Firefly on DVD. By now it is about 1:30 a.m. Extremely tired and ready for bed, I start surfing the channels looking for something decent, since Adult Swim is showing crappy anime now.

Lo' and behold, I come across the ESPN ticker, and what the fuck? The Canucks and Stars are still playing! It is the Second Overtime! This is great. One great part of playoff hockey is the fact that the game will not end until someone wins. So get under my covers, put the sleep timer on 60 minutes, and wait for someone to win.

Only no one does. The second OT ends with the score tied 4-4. 20 minutes later, the 3rd OT begins. 3 overtimes, now I am invested, I am not sleeping until this thing is done. Sure I punked out on the beggining and middle and the first end of the game, but I am here now and that is what matters right?

Besides, the Third OT was fucking awesome. A couple of "pings" (when the shot hits a post), no penalties and of course, no goals. But also no commercials. The 3rd OT ends at 2:50 a.m. with the score still tied. With 20 minutes until 4th OT starts, I flip to the Cartoon Network and catch the last bit of Futureama and the first bit of Family Guy. 3:10 rolls around, and I go back to Versus (the network that broadcasts hockey).

[pause for dramatic effect]

They are showing a pilates infomercial. My mind starts racing, what the fuck is this? Is this a commercial or an infomercial (but in my heart I know). I wait a couple minutes. I know the 4th OT has started. I know that I am on the right channel.

I know that I am fucking pissed.

I have to get out of bed, and turn on my computer (which takes five minutes to turn on). Stewing, and stewing some more, I sit there. It is quarter after three in the morning and I have to be up in five and half hours (that is, if i do not mind going to class in my skivvies and not peeing or brushing my teeth before I leave). My computer boots up, finally, but no, it cannot be that easy, because my sound card isnt recognized. I have to uninstall it and reinstall it so that I can hear sound.

While I wait an eternity for my computer to accomplish this relatively simple task, I check out the hockey message board,, check out the game thread, and discover that other people are facing the same dilemma. Fuck Versus I think.

So anyway, I get the sound working, go to and get the radio feed and listen to the last five minutes of the game, which ends around 3:30 am on one of the Sedin Brothers Goals. Vancouver Wins. The GM Place is going nuts.

Sure would have been nice to see that.

So during that five minutes while I was listening to the game, I fire off an extremely angry letter to Versus, letting them know of my absolute displeasure.

I figured this would be the talk of the blogdome today, after all, everyone had the BigLead's back when Cowherd crashed their site and they have been all over Dice-K and Imus. I thought this was up there with MLB trying to put Extra Innings on DirecTV only.

But sadly, no one seems to care. I found two blog entries talking about this. This one (written as it happened and similar to what I would have written at the time, though I would have had about 200 more "fuck"'s) and this one, which makes the astute "Heidi" reference (also, mad props to that guy, Greg Brownell, because he is the one that got a hold of the AP, and made this a newsstory (it is likely Versus would have ignored it had they not been contacted by the AP)).

So all my favorite blogs never mentioned it once today, be it Shanoff, Deadspin, WithLeather, AwfulAnnouncing, NHL Fanhouse, OffWingOpinion, and all the rest.

A fucking travesty. However, based on the AP article, as well as the messages on Hfboards indicating that several people still had the game on Versus, Me thinks that blame rests with one party.


Yeah, I said it. It seems that my cable company is the party most likely to blame for cutting off the game. It would be great to be able to switch, but you know, the whole monopoly thing and trees cutting off access to a satellite. I was forced to use Time Warner in Undergrad as well, and let me say, they really do suck (it took three fucking tries before they could figure out to hook my house up with cable, even though the people that lived here previously had it).

And they are going to wonder why we haven't paid out bill in three months.

So, in sum, I am very pissed to have missed the end of the sixth longest game in NHL history (though I did get to listen to it on streamed internet radio!). I am very pissed that no one in this country cares enough about hockey to mention this (though the AP story was on ESPN's NHL page). I am extremely pissed that the NHL did not contract around this with Versus, which in turn would have contracted with the cable companies to prevent pre-empting live programing such as this. (And if Versus was that smart, I will happily testify as to my pain and suffering in a court of law, showing that by Time Warners actions, Versus has lost their expectancy interest in me watching any future non-NHL programming on the network).

To conclude, read this. It has nothing to do with this bullshit, but it might pique your interest in the hockey playoffs, then when TV fucks you, you will understand my pain.

Tuesday, April 10, 2007

The Ice is Getting Foggy

Ahh, this is my favorite time of the year. Opening Day was a week ago, and the Cubs are still in the pennant race, the NFL draft is a couple weeks away and I am ODing on mock drafts, and quite possibly the best part of this time of year, finals are just around the corner. It is difficult to trump outlining six hours a day (I assume, I haven't started yet).

Oh, and the Stanley Cup playoffs are starting. You should watch. Hockey is fun. Check your local listings for Versus (that is a TV channel, probably at the high end).

And just to get you fired up, here is a kick ass hockey fight from several years ago (blatantly ripped off from WithLeather).

And, to get you even more excited, here are a couple videos of Sidney Crosby, the 19 year old wunderkind.

("Crosby beats Kolzig like he's a rented mule")

More of the same, but with commentary by Sid the Kid

The obligatory "Tribute" Video

Yeah, so maybe I have a little man crush on him. But check out the playoffs, and you will develop one to.

Wednesday, April 04, 2007

Manipulating Kids is Fun

A long time ago, in a suburb far far away, I was a little kid. Though I cannot recall my exact age, I do distinctly recall being much shorter than I am now. I was probably in the six to ten range. It was before fourth grade (likely much before), of that I am positive, because when the following takes place, my best friend was my neighbor [Cindy].

Cindy was a tomboy, and we used to have a blast playing tackle football in the backyard, as well as playing He-Man and G.I. Joe. This was not exactly a Calvin-Susie type of relationship. She was the one that taught me how to curse and convinced me that Santa was not real (though the title of this post may imply that this will be about Santa Claus, it is not, that is a post for another day (check back in nine months)).

She was also kind enough to give me the painstaking play-by-play of the most recent The Simpsons episode (first season!) on Friday afternoons, since the Draconian Regime controlling the remote in my household had censored that particular show. Ahh, a girl who would play football, Nintendo and G.I. Joe. You can see how no one has measured up to her since then.

Enough digression and back-story. Now that I have started writing this, I realize that when the following occurred I must have been six or seven. The Simpsons debuted in 1989, putting me at the ripe ol' age of 8, and I know that this happened before that, because, sadly, The Simpsons recaps were the beginning of the end, as she would soon for junior high, and leave the poor elementary student in the dust (ok, extremely over-simplified and likely inaccurate, but it will do for our purposes today).

So being a six or seven year old, there were two things I liked to do. Play and get dirty. Usually they went hand-in-hand, but there were plenty of times where practicing sliding into second base was a lot of hard work. Dressing up and looking nice meant one thing: Church. If there has been anything that I have consistently hated from age six to twenty-six it is Church. Sure the reasons have changed, but back then, they were just as pure. Why wear uncomfortable pants and an itchy sweater when you could wear shorts and a T? I may be a godly man today had I been allowed to wear shorts to church.

You can imagine, that when Cindy's father approached me on one fine spring day in '87 (or '88), and asked me to participate in some stupid fashion show, I was not enthused. In fact, I think that was the first "What The Fuck" look I had ever given to an adult. I told him no, simply and emphatically. No, no, no, no, no, no. Had I a larger vocabulary I may have said something like "Fuck No" or "Hell No" or even (had I listened to more gangsta rap and less Vanilla Ice) "[n-word] please."

Had I been a bit older, I would have been well-versed in the whole "No means No" phenomenon, but, unfortunately, I wasn't. Cindy's Father, knowing my naivety, kept pushing and pushing. You know how it works, they keep asking, explaining things differently, and after a while, it begins to sound like a good idea. I may have been young, but I understood what it this ordeal would mean three things: Wearing Nice Clothes and Having Others Seeing Me In Nice Clothes and Missing Out On A Saturday. With those three things in mind, I stuck to my guns, stood steadfast, and refused to consent, despite the fact that Cindy's Father had recruited my parents to begin leaning on me.

Then he started making promises. And one promise made me cave. He promised that after the fashion show, he would take Cindy and myself to McDonald's.

Ok, stop laughing at me. First, I was six. Second, you have to understand the time period we lived in. I was raised in a household where we could only have soda on special occasions. Cable television was a pipe dream. Hell, I could not even watch the Simpsons. You think my parents were big on taking me to fast food joints? They sure as hell were not. We had fast food twice a year; one the big drive to summer vacation destination and on the depressing drive home from summer vacation destination. For me, eating at McDonald's was exotic, the equivalent to eating a $60 dollar steak today.

So I caved. I caved because I liked hamburgers boiled in grease and hollow french fries. I sold out all the ideals a six year old harbors for a $5 meal. And Cindy's Father knew he could buy my childhood for 40 bits.

But we shan't forget the real point of this story. For one day in my life, I was a male model. Walked down a runway. Turned. And of course, did not smile (mostly because I was miserable). And that is just an FYI to all the ladies out there. Me, former male model.

Saturday, March 31, 2007

Not Flying Under The Radar

So, a couple weeks ago, my school had its CALI Awards. For those of you not familiar, a CALI award is given to the highest grade in each class (See this website for a list of schools that participate in the CALI program (91 total), it even has all the winners, (good luck finding me, but hopefully you can find you). For those not in the CALI program, it is referred to as getting “The Book” in a class. See this for more info).

I cleaned up at the CALI’s, but really did not want to go. I am not really one for public acknowledgment of achievements. A grade on a transcript, a pat on the back from my boss, and money are all I really need for validation. Sure, absence of some recognition hurts, we all have some ego that needs to be fed, but I have no need to stuff myself on ambient praise.

But I went because I did not want the Prof. making the announcements to make some snide comment about me. Turned out, he did not read the awards, so it was all moot anyway. But I still rebelled in my own little way. The invitation says “Formal Attire Requested” leaving a nice loophole, such as using "may" in a contract.

No, I did not show up in my usual slovenly appearance. I showered before hand. I wore a nice shirt (though it is frayed in a few places) and wore a pair of khakis that are frayed, look like shit and are too long and big for me, so they keep falling down. However, I did wear nice shoes (not my regular shoes that are falling apart) and black socks. Had I not just shaved my head recently for unrelated reasons, who knows what my hair would have looked like, but that was not a concern. Quite a few of the guys getting CALIs showed up in a suit and tie, looking immaculate.

A part of me feels bad for not treating this like a big deal. For most people, getting a CALI is a big deal, and it should be. It is not easy. Sadly, my 153 LSAT and inability to write a decent personal statement left me at this school, and while I do (or more accurately, did) bust my ass, to me, this is all inconsequential. I have more demons to fight than a CALI can shield. But for others, it truly is a great accomplishment. A part of me feels like I cheapen this for others when I show up like I do not care and leave with a wheelbarrow of CALIs.

Maybe I should turn this around, all those who CALIed classes with me in them should feel even better about their achievement. Maybe? Can that happen? I got kind of pissed that I did not CALI a couple of classes, but I suppose it happens (for instance, one class I had last semester, I finished the exam with over an hour left. I considered revising and adding to my answers, but did not feel like it because the Prof. wrote some shitty exam questions. If he cannot put forth a good faith effort to test me, why should I bother to put forth a better than good faith effort to answer? I still got an A-, but I hate being talked down to. I am much more pleased with the exam that was impossible that I ended up with an A- on).

So you probably think I am an asshole right about now (and you would be right, but at least I know it right?) but let me close out this post with a nice anecdote. Back a couple years before I went to law school, I was working a night job. It was a seasonal position, and I was in charge of operations (jointly with another guy), but for all intents and purposes I was a temp. I would be let go at the end of the summer, just like all the guys I supervised. But this job involved very intense operations in the two weeks leading up to July 4th (we worked hard to make your picnics more comfortable). These two weeks involved long hours by everyone, grunts and supervisors combined (by this I mean that everyone in the company got involved in the normal operations, not just the seasonal workers). But my crew would work 11-14 hours days, depending on how things went. Each grunt would head out in a truck, do their assignments, and come back, and invariably, if they got back before 4 am I would send them out to do more work (imagine coming in after working 10 hours only to have your super demand you do more work, the night after you worked 14 hours).

So anyway, July 3rd was usually a pretty short night. So that night, I decided to do something nice for my guys. The bosses did not give a shit about how hard they worked, or the shit they put up with from me (most of them liked me, but I would just keep pushing them). So I told my co-super, after the crew had gone out for the night, that I was going to order a bunch of pizzas for the guys. He asked me why, and I said because it would be nice. Make them feel appreciated. A small gesture can boost morale (god knows the bosses did nothing to boost morale, they were too busy bitchin’ about what they had to do). Since the 3rd was a slow night, I did not have to worry about any bosses being around, checking in, or harassing us in anyway, so I ordered a bunch of pizzas and paid the man when he arrived (it was about $60. Considering I made over 2.5 grand (gross) in those two weeks (much more than a member of the crew would get because I was there from start to finish (and I made more than them)) it was nothing).

Sure the pizza was cold when they came back, but what did they care. Though, they would invariably ask where it came from. My response, “It just showed up around 11.” I have no clue if any of them believed it, but they were all too tired to inquire further. If they thought it came from the higher-ups that is great. Better for the company. I had no stake in this, it just felt good to do something for these guys.

Of course, if I really did not want recognition for this, then why am I telling you?

Friday, March 30, 2007

Opening Day

. . . Is Monday, but I could not wait. A little video clip to get you fired up for Monday.

(by the way, everyone knows that the season starts when the Reds pitcher throws out the first ball. This Sunday Night bullshit is just that.)