Friday, January 27, 2006

I actually learned something last semester...

my Torts prof is known as THE socratic teacher at our school. Too true. No matter how right you were or how strong your argument, he would stay with you and keep changing the facts until you either couldn't remember your name and original position or you wept... either way, he won. Well, my property prof and I got into it earlier this week on some case and I held my ground. He wileyed the facts and when he stated the other side, I remember thinking, "ooh that's a good one. that's tough" but I was able to think quickly on my feet and come up with ways to distinguish etc... I felt like he ultimately made the stronger argument, but that I would not have been laughed out of the courtroom based on my argument. I forgot about that episode and went on with my day.

The next day a girl in that class told me how she felt bad for me because he was so mean... and honestly, I had no clue what she was talking about. Thinking on it later I realized she meant that episode and thought "I am SOOOOO glad that I had my Torts prof; nothing is scary or mean after that!" So here's to thick skin! Oh and yesterday Prof Property commended me that I articulated myself well earlier that week. Yes. It really isn't about being right. It's about logically, legallly, plausibly holding your own. Right?

Thursday, January 26, 2006

It's a whole new semester and I'm in love...

with Property that is. really. Some of the most interesting stuff I have read in law school yet. I don't know if it is the relevance to my daily life? the fact that i've wondered about many of the topics covered before I ever set foot in law school (of course, none of it had to do with whales or foxes :) ) Really though. Interesting stuff. There's an inherent "fair" or "not fair" ness to everything too that interests me.

Con law- *yawn* still. So help me. I HAD to surf yesterday in order to stay awake. Naughty me. But then, what's worse snoring in class or just not paying attention? My biggest revelation so far is that it seems like Congress can do just about anything they want if they can somehow loosely (and I do mean loosely) relate it to the Commerce Clause. Le sigh.

Crim law--the best thing about this class is the prof. Young, enthusiastic, brilliant war stories. But so far we aren't into blood and guts, just punishment theory etc. Again, le sigh. You've got to love any crim law prof though that usually has a video clip for each class, and actually likes law and order :)

My other classes so far are just "meh".

I've only got one more credit hour this semester than last, but holy cats! I seem to be reading twice as much each week. I'm going to have to get organized and early or I will play catch up to an early grave.

OCI drop is next week. The only thing I have left to do is write teh cover letters. Ick! I've decided I'm just going to do the OCI thing. If I get a job, great. Otherwise, I am going to summer school so hopefully I can get in state tuition by fall. Again, meh.

Underneath all the "mehs" I still do love it. I'm just tired. So very tired. Not a good sign only 3 weeks into the semester.

Sunday, January 15, 2006

A further thought on con law boringness

Is that even a word? Don't know, don't care. Seriously. I have just been reading opinion after opinion by Marshall. Anyone else want to join me in saying that the man's goal must have been to fill as many volumes as possible? Good freaking grief! It goes on and on and on. The dicta runs for miles with no happy end in sight. And here's the frightening part: these are heavily excerpted! Yikes!

Grades update: the last grade is now in. Not nearly as good as the others. Somewhat disappointing after basking in the prettiness of the others. Sigh. But perspective. I'm fairly certain that the ranking-doodles will have me right where I wanted to be.

Saturday, January 14, 2006

Grades are up

all but one class they haven't "curvified" yet. Lovely. All I have to say is I am really happy. I did much better than I thought I did. Now, I'm trying to turn that into motivation to start studying harder. (Why is Con law sooooooooo boring?)

Tuesday, January 10, 2006

Thoughts on 1L grades

I don't have them yet, but we are supposedly going to get them in the next week or so. Already people are getting depressed or jumpy or wanting to talk about what they all mean... blah blah blah. Folks... it don't mean a thing. Sure, it might make it more difficult or easier to land one of the 6 1L summer jobs with a nice paying firm. But we all knew coming into law school that there were 6 jobs.

That said, I realized this morning as someone was blathering on that I think I did reasonably well, which is a really dangerous thing to think. I have always said that top 10% is my dream... top 20% will make me ecstaticly happy but anything in the top 50% is realistic... i will only cry if I'm in the bottom half because I worked my butt off. Anyway, I realized that while I have that to hold onto, I've been thinking in terms of specific grades for specific classes lately. Example, I think I got a B+ or an A- in my writing class. But how do you know... and what if I only got a C+... writing is a weird class for me because I feel like there is more pressure because I was a writer before school. Grand scheme of things... I think I can be in the top 50% and have a C+. So it should be OK, but it so doesn't feel OK.

Lesson: find out from someone who knows (i.e., a prof) how to figure out your percentage before you look at your individual grades, if possible. If you have to calculate yourself... make hubby look at grades and calculate first. Sigh. I don't care about grades. I don't care about grades. I don't care about grades. Let's say it altogether now, I don't care about grades....

Friday, January 06, 2006

Officially a helper monkey!

So this week my big plan was get my resume reviewed by LCS and get a job strategy and to also visit our pro bono offices. Check and check. My resume is solid, now I just need to figure out where to apply. Correct answer??? Everywhere. I also had a great talk with my writing prof who gave me some great ideas for how to maximize my summer in the event that I don't get one of the 6 1L jobs available in our community.

The real win though was with the pro bono office. I wanted to get an early chance to see all the new listings, so I could cherry pick a little more. Fab plan because there was exactly ONE legislative advocacy spot. I called, I interviewed, I conquered. Let's face it, it's really more about a warm body, but the point is that it is my warm body. I don't think that I should go into any details about it here, but I will say that I think it is going to rewarding and not a little scary. As they explained my project yesterday, I kept wanting to say, but, but I'm a 1L, are you really sure... But I stopped myself. It's for the semester, and I'll be doing a lot of researching and writing and ultimately they are going to let me present the paper to the legislative committee that governs this issue. How scary is that? But in a really cool way.

I had several reasons for wanting to do the pro bono work... i do want to help, but I also want to force myself out of my comfort zone and get exposed to areas that I usually avoid. I'm a conservative/libertarian. I told the org straight up that I wasn't sure that I bought into the lobby that they are pushing, but that I was willing to work hard and keep and open mind. This is going to be challenging intellecutally, but also, I am hoping that this exposure to new points of view will be really healthy for me.

The only concern I have is that it is supposed to be a 5 hour a week gig, but with the laundry list of things I have to do, I'm thinking it is going to be more. Yeek! Time management will be everything. But then I always do tend to manage my time better when I have more to do. Let's hope that holds true.

Helper monkeys of the world unite!

Tuesday, January 03, 2006

Break is almost over... what break?

Between the oh-so-fun holiday travels and my daughter being sick with RSV, I've had zero fun down time. I've read my homework for two classes and cleaned part of my house but that's it. Happily, today munchkin is well and went to school, so I have a better shot of getting things done. But they still aren't fun. Like: updating my resume and making appointments with the LCS people to get it reviewed. Ditto on the cover letters. Of course, there's also finding the jobs to apply for. Sigh. I also need to go buy a new suit. Double sigh. I really hate shopping. Between all that, I'd like to find time to read the new Robert Jordan Wheel of Time book... somehow I'm thinking that will be a summer treat.

School starts next Monday and for all of my complaining about not having a break, I'm kind of excited. I love that I get all new classes except for one. And if the next semester goes as quickly as the last one did, well I'll be a graduate in no time.

Last thing. I wanted to share my New Year's Resolutions because then I'll have some accountability for them. So here they are:
  1. No more swearing. really I sound like a trucker most of the time and I am afraid that I will let some of those words fly in front of my daughter. And frankly, I want my classmates to remember me for something other than my colorful language... after all even in school we are networking.
  2. Lose weight... I'm not going to say diet. I'm going to say WAY less eating out. WAY more planning meals, portion control and exercise. It can only make me feel better.
  3. No more bashing/or generally thinking ill of one of my next semester profs. I've heard horror stories about him and was getting sucked into that mind frame. He might really be a garbage teacher, but I'm going to make lemonade.
  4. Be closer to God. So I know that I rarely if ever mention it, but generally, I'm a pretty religious person. But last semester not so much, and I think it really had a negative impact on me. So i'm going to try to attend more frequently and pray more often than just the night before finals and when my memo is due.
There it is. I'll keep you posted. Oh... so far I've already swore once. No matter. Practice makes perfect.

And the holidays are over... thank heavens

I'll spare you the gory family details... suffice it to say, same crap, different year. I've made a new life long resolution though.... no more traveling for the holidays. Maybe then it will be different crap and different year.

I went to New Orleans to see all of my family, who are all now back in their homes. And I didn't realize until I got there how very unique and lucky my family is. Everywhere you look there are blue tarped roofs (a la FEMA), piles of debris and huge tree stumps from enormous trees that were pulled up by the roots during the hurricane. My cousin's husband's family were not as lucky as mine. Her husband's parents and brother lost everything, homes, and businesses. We drove to that area to see what was left and it was erie. It's like there are two parts to NO right now... a place that is almost normal, except that there is too much traffic and all of the stores have weird hours, like McDonalds being open from 11-4 and only the drive through... The other part is like a war zone, but after the war... no signs of life anywhere, front doors wide open and inside you can see the raw wood because all of the homes have to be gutted and treated for mold. You still see an occasional car on top of a fence or a boat on top of a roof or carport... furniture half way out of windows and curtains that are torn into strips flapping in the breeze in the broken windows. It's just odd. And my heavens, the smell. Oh, gracious the smell. Like open sewer or worse.

People that I talked to there are optimistic. They want to get everything restored, but it's going to take a long time... I've moved around so much that I don't feel particularly attached to any one place as "home", so I can't understand their position of "this is where I was born, raised, married etc... and I'm never leaving." But if that's what they want, I hope for their sakes it can be. As for me, I think I would be moving, permanently.