Monday, February 18, 2008

The Law I Lurve; or, How Do I Heart Thee U.C.C., Let Me Count the Ways

So while I was buried in this last year, I managed to take a few U.C.C. classes. Now, you might not recall that I actually became rather enamored of the UCC in my first year. My Contracts prof had a sort of orgasmic relationship with the UCC and brought Article 2 into the class anywhere it was remotely appropriate. I liked it. It was pretty, generally really clear and it all tied together so very nicely.

Since then, I've taken a Secured Transactions class (Article 9) and am currently taking a Payment Systems class (Art 3, 4, 4A, 5 & 7). And the more I read the more, I just simply *heart* the UCC. Obviously, not all of the articles are written with what can only be described as insight into legal code nirvana (I'm talking about you article 4!--what were they thinking?). But when you run across a true winner like Article 9, sigh, my heart begins to pitter patter a little faster.

But the coolest thing about it, is that the whole thing is such a lovely package. I love, love, love sitting in my Payments class and having the prof rattle something off about some default rules on letters of credit (article 5) and how the code assumes they were smart enough to protect themselves with an article 9 transaction. And I really love how I really understand how it all works together. Now, I don't have the orgasmic relationship with the UCC that my K prof did, but damn, it's pretty satisfying.

All silliness aside, it's a damn cool area of the law to be involved in from a private sector point of view. My firm has a developing practice in it that is always hopping--partly because those attorneys are allowed to breach the litigation/transactional barrier and follow deal from inception to bankruptcy or work-out if needs be. So everything is different everyday, but it's a lot of the same players, which is nice for building good relationships.

And my back-up plan these days is to do private securities if the UCC thing doesn't come to fruition (how many of you know there is an article (hardly at all adopted :( ) in the UCC covering investment securities? In any case, it was another of the classes that I fell in love with, and is practiced widely in my firm. Yea! I love options.

Friday, February 15, 2008

Law Review Woes

Since I identified my board position as the root of all evil in my "I'm alive" post, I thought that I might expound a bit on the ridiculousness that is Law Review.

As a 2L doing copywork/cite checking, I hated Law Review. I hated the inanity of editing someone else's very clearly shit work. I thought it ridiculous that a professor would submit such a piece of shit and expect, as their due, little armies of law review plebes to fix all of their gross errors. And I'm not just talking about sloppy blue-booking. I'm talking about border-lined (or just over the line) plagiarism. Incorrect citations. General extreme laziness in citing anything. Do law profs have original thoughts? My conclusion was that, no, no they don't. All articles are merely regurgiations of other author's thoughts... and more often than not, while copyworking, i would discover it wasn't even the person my author cite's thoughts. It was some other egghead's long before.

So I came to the conclusion that
  1. Employers like law review on resumes because it shows that you are detail-oriented, know how to find needle in hay-stacks, know how to save your future senior partner's ass from looking stupid, and you are willing to do completely pointless, mind-numbingly dull tasks just because someone in authority asked (told) you to. So you do it to get a job.
  2. It makes you feel good about your research and writing skills, which are clearly superior to most of the stuff that you work on. If you only had their "connections," you could be just as cool as the authors think they are.
  3. It is a right of passage and simply must be endured.
What I don't like about being on the board, specifically being an editor, is that it is all of the things that I hated before and more because our lame 2Ls won't do their jobs properly. And because I'm just an editor, I don't have any carrot to take away from them. Most of my law review life these days is trying to patch together the half-assed job of my copyworkers and the author who wrote the damn article. I get nothing out of this process other than high blood-pressure.

And the part that makes me just sick about it: I RAN FOR THE STUPID THING! I asked for it. And I got it. Utter, total fucking moron.

Wednesday, February 13, 2008

Tales from the Crypt--or a 3L comes up from the rubble

Very nearly. I hadn't realized that it had been that long since I blogged on here. For a moment, as I stared at my last post and its corresponding date, I thought: "but you'll never remember all that you've done in the last year. It's gone." And then I thought, "are you crazy? you'll never remember all of the million things that you've done because it's a blur, and moreover, it was a blur when you were in it.

I intend to start blogging regularly again. Now that I can remember my name, and I see my daughter everyday, you know, when she's NOT just sleeping.

By way of catch up: I had just found out that my note was selected for publication and that I got onto the executive board of my law review. yeah, i can't believe that I was excited about that. That position alone has been the reason that I felt pushed over the edge this year. I had to start last March because our 3Ls crapped out on us. Then I had to work on it all bloody summer in addition to my firm job. I was freaking exhausted. Then last semester, I took the wrong combination of classes and was dramatically over-taxed, leading to really, truly almost getting divorced. No joke. Happily, we have a great counselor and are working through it. I can say with utmost confidence that just being an associate will be so so much easier than this.

I say that with utmost confidence because my summer associate experience was, uh, different than most folks. We worked. A lot. I personally billed as much as 1st and 2nd year associates do. And the firm wants it that way because they want you to know what you are getting yourself into. Now, don't get me wrong, I did go on a fantabulous trip paid for by the firm and won some neato prizes and got the nice moula to reward my hard work, but it was WORK not play. So to have to do that all bloody day and part of the night and THEN work on law review bullshit. Well, let's just say that my summer was non-existent.

That said, I really did like the folks that I worked with and the level of responsibility that they dole out to the younger associates. I really got my hands dirty and was able to decide that I would like to become a UCC-goddess when I grow up. Love it. But then, I know you're all shocked given that you know I'm such a code-girl. So in the end, they offered, I accepted, and I'm waiting for my summer stipend for consideration to be made :)

I tried the clerkship circuit, more than half-heartedly. And I almost got something with my state supremes. BUT I'm a total fucking moron. That's why I didn't get it. Honestly, true confession of a total fucking moron: on the cover letters to two of the Justices, I put the address label to one judge and in the same letter, I said "dear other judge." It's true. See, total fucking moron. And of course, the worst part of that for me is that I just don't make mistakes like that. I really don't. So it was sort of a poor time to decide to do so. In hindsight it's okay because the one hag from my class got a clerkship with one of the state supremes, and honestly, 3 years with her is plenty. I still have one app outstanding on something that I see as a long shot, but you never know.

What else? My note was finally published. It only took a freaking year. Let's just say that our law review board isn't as, urm, harmonious? as one might wish. And there were evidently several folks who ran for the title with no itnentions of actually doing the work.

Because of that, I learned about 3 months ago to say "no." I always felt like if things didn't get done, things that weren't my tasks, that it was somehow still my responsibility to fix it. No longer--at least not for the leaches of law review.

I suppose i sound far more cynical than I once did. Maybe I am moreso now. It's tough to say, I've always been fairly bent toward cynicism.

My wonderful daughter is doing really well. She had a second surgery over my fall break last semester, and has been really very healthy since. It's honestly like a miracle. She's learning to ice skate and ski this winter--total snow bunny. And she is reading now. I had a couple of pictures out a few nights ago from about the time I started school and little one in it. My oh, my. She was really just a toddler then, and now she is starting kindergarten in the fall.

Oh, and just to make it all so shockingly real: I've turned in my bar application, paid my barbri fees (so I don't get screwed and have to take the night class), and signed my "intent to graduate" form. hot damn, I'll be an at er ny soon.

I suppose that's all for now. I'll post a bit about classes and so forth soon. I'm working for a judge right now, who has a psychotic clerk, so that should be some fodder for entertainment. I'll also go through ye olde blogroll soon and update that. it's good to be back