Thursday, March 31, 2005
I am not even thinking of the 25 page appellate brief I have due on Monday that is, as yet, unresearched, unwritten, and uh....unthunk.
I have school all day and then I have to go to a meeting for this stupid Committee I got myself mixed up in on main campus. If ever there was an advertisement for the idea that meetings are big, fat, wastes of time and that having a committee with no clear purpose or goal is just an exercise in painfulness for all involved (except the one dippy leader), this particular committee woud be the prime example. And the meetings always last like 3 hours with absolutely no direction at all...generally by the second hour I have totally lost my patience both with the undergrad rep's and with the "leader" and am snapping away at everyone.
BUUUUUT, M. will be here for one day next week on her way somewhere else...YAY! I'm so excited. She's going to stay with me Wed. night, then go to school with me Thurs, then BEER...and then, since she was smart enough to marry a guy from Hawaii, her and K. get to go to Hawaii for about 10 days and have a honeymoon of sorts. Jealous!!
Wednesday, March 30, 2005
When I was in the Air Force I got an opportunity to speak to a 3-star General once about my job (I was briefing him on a program I ran). He told me I should never be afraid to close my door and put my feet up on my desk and just *think*. In fact, he told me it was part of my job to think about things, because being a good leader means understanding what is going on around you and being able to have a comprehensive view of the issues involved in your job and the people you manage.
And you know, it worked for me in the Air Force. I was a good officer and I think, for the most part, I did a good job with the resources that I had. I *know* that I had a solid grasp on an amount of information that was positively voluminous (if you've ever seen military regulations you know this is true). I won't bore you with the details of my job, but I was in charge of a LOT of programs, including substantive legal work, for nearly 6,000 people worldwide. So, I don't suppose there is an argument that what I'm learning in law school is too complex for me or that I am not used to stress. Believe me, having a full Colonel screaming at you in a staff meeting because HE messed something up and calling you incompetent in front of 25 people is pretty stressful.
The quarter system is so intense that there is no time for rumination. No time to discuss, think, synthesize, assimilate, or comprehend on any but the most basic level. Do some people manage to do it? Apparently yes. Maybe they don't spend an hour a day blogging, or are just more organized or smarter than me. There is an argument here though, I think, that having most all of your classes four (or five) days a week, three or four or five classes a quarter, and having to read 50+ pages for each class each night, does not allow students the time to process the information properly. Is it really any wonder I am so overwhelmed all the time? I feel like my life is about reading a huge number of pages each night so I can say "Yes professor, I read X,Y, and Z"...but most of the time I have no idea what the deeper thread of meaning is underlying the very basic details gleaned from one hurried read-through.
I have to quit bitching now though because I still have eighteen million pages to read for tomorrow.
Today was very special to me. In my Admin Law class the professor spent nearly 15 minutes clarifying his expectations for us because "some people" yesterday seemed like they didn't really understand what he wanted. Even though he didn't say my name I am so happy to know he was thinking of me. Knowing that people expect me to be incompetent, and having those expectations rewarded, is dreamy.
I am still a little bit worried about where I will live this summer. Diary, is it normal for men renting out houses to say they don't have a room they think you'll be interested in but they wish they knew your real name instead of the pseudonym you registered under at roommates.com? Also, do you think that for $800 a month I should expect more than a futon on the floor of some guy's den? Hmmmm...I don't know. I'm kind of excited to think that after living at one of these lovely establishments for the summer I might end up famous, I just hope I get a cut of the hidden webcam profits.
Also, I still hate you-know-who and think that one guy is hot. That is all.
Never Again: Again and Again
In her 2001 article Bystanders to Genocide, Pulitzer Prize winning author Samantha Power recounts how President Clinton was shocked and outraged by an article written by Philip Gourevitch recounting the horrors of the 1994 genocide in Rwanda, prompting him to send the article to his national security advisor Sandy Berger with a note scrawled in the margin reading "Is what he's saying true? How did this happen?"
After taking office, President Bush reportedly read Power's article on the Clinton administration's failure to intervene during the genocide. He too scrawled a message in the margin - "NOT ON MY WATCH."
Yet we are now faced with another African genocide, this time in Darfur, and the United States and the rest of the world are responding exactly as they did during Rwanda - with paralyzed inaction.
Though there are many key differences between what is taking place in Darfur and what occurred in Rwanda a decade ago, there are also many similarities.
In 1993, the world watched "Schindler's List" and wondered how such horrors could unfold and why they were not stopped. In 2004, it watched "Hotel Rwanda" and asked the same questions. In each case,those questions went unanswered.
Just as in Rwanda, the international military force on the ground in Darfur is far too small, poorly equipped and operating under an extremely limited mandate that does not allow them to protect civilians at risk.
Just as in Rwanda, the genocide is taking place against a backdrop of "civil war," leading the international community to focus more on establishing a cease-fire than protecting those being killed. Just as in Rwanda, the death toll is nearly impossible to determine.
Just as in Rwanda, the United Nations is more or less paralyzed as individual nations seek to protect their own national interests rather than helpless men, women and children.
Just as in Rwanda, media coverage is almost nonexistent, Congress is all but silent, and the human rights community is having difficulty getting the nation to pay attention to a genocide in progress.
Just as in Rwanda, a genocide is unfolding - but this time it ishappening on our watch.
We ask you to join the Coalition forDarfur as we attempt to raise awareness of the genocide in Darfur and raise money for the live saving work Save the Children is doing there.
Tuesday, March 29, 2005
I also had my first class today in Terrorism and Law. Good: It's unique, timely, interactive, small group seminar, interesting. Bad: There are gonna be some truly annoying people in there. I can just tell.
I am BUSY, it's so weird it's only the second day, I feel like (a) I didn't get a Spring Break at all which I guess is normal since it was only a week long and I spent the whole time writing almost, and (b) that I am as overwhelmed as I normally am probably 2/3 of the way through the quarter when I realize how far behind I am. Damn. It's gonna be a long quarter.
Anyhoo...I got a JB Boy suggestion submitted via email this morning, and I will attempt to get that posted tonight (I almost wrote "I will attempt to get it up tonight"...heh).
Monday, March 28, 2005
First, there is this commercial airing here that is so bizarre. Let me set the stage for you. The camera starts out on three attractive young girls, like high school senior age, and then pulls out and you can see they are all wearing what look like prom dresses. They take turns talking, and proceed to tell us, the viewers, that they are receptionists at this law "firm"...really a one man personal injury shop. The assure us that "Mike" is a great guy and would return your calls, unlike those BIG FIRM guys, and the reason he is so on top of everything is because THEY, young teenage girls, are enforcers and keep him on the right track. As the camera pulls all the way back you can see all three girls are standing on what *looks like* a large roll of white butcher paper that is suspended above their heads and rolls down behind them onto the floor...I'm sure it's a screen of some kind, but it looks cheap. You can see the edges of it and all the equipment and stuff on the sides. Then, they all stand there with big teenager-y grins and you hear the lawyers voice go "My Name is Mike Smith and I approved this ad." WHAT? The whole thing is weird and made me feel vaguely uncomfortable that he's employing a bunch of attractive girls who look 15 in his office. Blech.
Second, the commercials for Oprah tomorrow with Priscilla Presley? HOLY SHIT! She looks like a flesh eating cadaverous zombie. Seriously, her mouth is now a maw, a big cavernous yawning brain sucking machine. It's so awful. I'm going to try to find a picture later.
Third, on the news tonight they had a story about a guy whose roof fell in. The culprits? SWEAR TO GOD, the news guy said it was "Pesky mountain beavers." HAHAHAHAHA.
Fourth, damnit. I can't remember what else I was going to say. Oh well, NDC will be happy the list is even.
Fifth, oh yeah. I heard a commercial today that Fantasia, who won American Idol last year (right? I guess...I don't watch it), is going to be on Idol this week singing her new single..."Baby Momma." I have no words.
Sixth...just keeping it even.
Sunday, March 27, 2005
I am not ready to go back to school tomorrow. This is strike number 9,837 against the quarter system...a very short spring break. I just can't face it tomorrow. I'm not ready for classes and reading and papers and MORE EXAMS. GAH!
I did have a fab Easter dinner over at LQ's though. If I could eat chocolate cake all day instead of going back to school tomorrow everything would be fine.
I am happy to report there's an all new Desperate Housewives tonight. YAY! And I think that new show Gray's Anatomy looks pretty good too...so I might see if that's OK.
I'm hoping that after a good night's sleep the "OHMYGOD" panic of my summer situation is going to subside. I'm just a little too Type-A for my own good. I think I am really going to love my job, but I am sad it doesn't pay just a tiny bit more. Damn the government and their miniature pay scale...let's just hope the job is as cool as I would like (hope?) (want?) it to be.
With that, it's back into the pj's for an afternoon planted in front of the TV. Whatever I said about getting ahead (or at least not getting behind) is null and void right now. Slackerhood calls.
What I'm saying is that by the time I pay rent in D.C. and rent here, and the bills I have to pay, I will have spent my entire paycheck every month. So food, fun stuff, and other living stuff, will all be coming out of my parent's pockets (unless I win the lottery or something). I'll be losing money this summer. Again.
I am going to LQ's house for Easter dinner, and I have to go buy books today (since apparently it would kill our professors to all use the same books for the same classes, thereby allowing us to get used texts from our classmates). Looks like my Admin Law class is going to be this quarter's "Fed Courts." I'm vowing right now to keep up with it...shoot me if I get behind.
OK, enough histrionics for today. I gotta go for a bike ride and then do all my errands.
Saturday, March 26, 2005
God, I hope the sun comes out today at some point. Normally the weather doesn't bother me, but I think the prospect of starting back to school on Monday, combined with missing being home just has me in a bit of a blue funk.
I also sat down and calculated how much money I am going to lose this summer working in D.C. and paying to live out there, plus keeping my apartment here, and it's definitely a sad, sad number. If I break my lease and move all my stuff though (and store it all summer), it's close to what it would cost to just pay the rent here for the summer...my apartment complex won't let me sublet but have basically told me they'll look the other way if I want to have someone in here for the summer. The problem of course is that I don't want anyone in here who I don't know who is not on a sublease contract of some sort -- I have nice stuff and I don't want some asshole in here all summer destroying it who I don't have some leverage over. Sigh. Oh well, the trials and tribulations of a law student/summer intern. Guess it'll all work itself out eventually. Sadly, as much as I hate to do it, I think my parents are going to end up footing part of the bill for my summer and that really makes me feel bad...they are just trying to be all nice and retired and I keep barging in demanding money. If I ever get a kickass job I'm totally sending them on a fabulous golf vacation or something.
Friday, March 25, 2005
When I got home my internet was out for about three hours...it was awful. How did I get so dependent? Also, I bought some ice cream to make myself feel better about being all alone tonight (I miss my parents!), and I have a question...did Cherry Garcia used to be pink? I think it did...right? RIGHT?
I changed my spinning bike pedals -- hooray for new Shimanos to go with my new cycling shoes. And I don't even mind the toeclips when I'm not going out on the road. In public I'm too afraid I won't be able to get my feet unclipped fast enough and I'll fall down. I'm not really known for my gracefulness...hard to believe, I'm sure.
Anyway, back to The DaVinci Code. I'm finally getting a chance to read without the paper hanging over my head...I'm taking tomorrow off to read, watch TV, clean house, and get organized...I'll do my first day reading on Sunday. Also, I'm only taking three classes this quarter, plus an appellate advocacy competition, YAY for free time! You can all remind me I said that in four weeks when I'm bitching about how busy and crazy my life is.
1. What blog, other than your own, do you read the most?
Definitely Soupie's BBQ and Daycare. I spend so much time over there I should get an award or an honorary membership or something!
2. Are you a gadget person? Do you have the latest thingamajigs and whoozits and geegaws? What sort of gadgets do you own?
I am not a gadget person. I only got a cell phone like two years ago and I have yet to own a PDA or Blackberry or whatever the hell those little things are called. Taking care of this blog is about as much as my poor little brain can take. The only gadgets I own are an MP3 player (if that even counts), which I can barely use and which is not an IPod, even though that's what I really want, and...ummmmm..I don't know, a detachable diskdrive? My USB key? Waffle iron? Like I said, not a gadget person.
3. If I gave you $1000 on the condition that you couldn't spend it on something responsible (e.g., bills), or save it, what would you do with the money? (Can you tell that a Democrat is asking that question?)
First of all, it would never occur to me to spend it on something responsible, or save it, so you're safe there. I would probably spend it on taking a trip after I'm done with law school...maybe a cruise to the Bahamas or a trip to Europe or something. I would bring M. because she's the bestest friend a girl could ever have. If I couldn't have a trip I would use it to buy stuff...random, undefinable, pink, shiny, rhinestone-y, sparkly stuff.
4. What are your five favorite sitcoms of all time, other than "Seinfeld" and "The Simpsons"?
This question is HARD! I had to basically give up and pick the five I've probably watched the most in my life, except Sports Night which was rudely ripped from the air at its prime. I just know when I see everyone else's lists I'm going to be pissed that there are like 20 more I should have picked.
4. Sports Night*
5. Organize a film festival based on a theme. Choose a theme and a handful of movies with that theme, and tell us what you've chosen.
My film festival would be "James Spader is a bonafide Sex God!" The movies would be:
Sex, Lies and Videotape
Pretty in Pink
All the Boston Legal and "the practice" episodes with him in them.
*DUH! Sports NIGHT not Sports CENTER. I suck. I was so tired.
Thursday, March 24, 2005
Aside from that, I am leaving here tomorrow morning to go back to the TVPNM. My dad gave me new Shimano bike shoes and pedals for my spinning bike, which is awesome, and I also got quite a bit of shopping in while I was here. New shoes, Costco, other assorted junk I don't need (THREE new lipglosses, all various shades of glimmery peach...why? BECAUSE THEY WERE THERE).
I spent the better part of the afternoon on Craigslist looking at apartments in D.C....sort of fruitless, but I figure I better at least try so I'll have a reason to whine about why it's so hard. I emailed a couple of people and haven't heard back yet, not sure what I'm really doing there. My usual MO is to just wing it and generally everything works itself out, so guess I'm going to stick with that philosophy at least for the time being.
I think that I was moderately to mostly boring this week, sorry about that (I apologize because, in my mind, as opposed to "in reality", this blog is not usually this boring...I know it probably is, but it makes me feel better to think not). My brain has been fried all week between finals, the drive, the paper, family stuff, and worrying about getting back and getting all my stuff done for the first day of class...sometimes this whole process feels neverending. I'm already worried about Spring finals in June...sad but true. I can feel my shoulders and neck tense up just thinking about having to take finals, rush to D.C. to move in to some as yet unfound place, start work right away so I'm not too far behind everyone else, work all summer, back to TVPNM, then right back to school. In my mind I know there will be so many fun times this summer and I will probably get to go see M. and K. for at least a week, plus come down here for a week or two, but still...the worry...it just seeps in at every opportunity.
Deep breath. Finding my happy place. Zennnnnnnnnnnnnn. OK, I will be back tomorrow with the Friday Spies. And if any of the other Friday Spies people are reading this, PLEASE email me and tell me how to do the darn copyright thing. I don't get it.
"You mean Shenanigans?"
I took this about three doors down from my dad's bike shop...I've been meaning to take this picture for about two years but I always forget the camera...well...TODAY I remembered! Everytime I drive by I laugh my ass off.
I have been super busy hanging out with the family, and finishing my paper, but hopefully I'll be back this afternoon once my mom is gone doing her volunteer thing and my dad is at work. YAY...my first (and likely only) good law school grade. Let's hope I still feel this good when I get back what is sure to be a petty darn awful Fed Courts grade.
Wednesday, March 23, 2005
Monday, March 21, 2005
Before you start school.
The summer before 1L, my main advice would be to relax, spend time with your family, and don't do anything law related. ESPECIALLY don't waste your money on any of those pre-law-school boot camp things that are supposed to get you all spun up before school even starts. Your 1L professors will all teach in very different ways, and will want you to learn specific things for regurgitation come exam time. Any advantage one of those courses will get you will be gone by the second week of school, plus you'll have to live with the fact that you spent a couple thousand bucks in order to be even more crazy and anal then everyone else, which is saying something amongst a group of law students.
The summer before my 1L year I got out of the Air Force in May, took a vacation to see my parents for a couple of weeks, and then went to Oklahoma City and lived with M. rent-free for two months while I temped at an easy receptionist job, socked away money for school, paid off some bills, and drank a REAL LOT. I read lots of trashy romance novels, watched tons of Dr. Phil, took up swimming again at the YMCA, and oh yeah, drank.
For all you ever wanted to know about Pre-1L, check out the archive on that very subject at Blawg Wisdom (of which yours truly has been a contributor although I have shirked my duties for many months now).
Here's my list of the top ten things to bring to law school...I would say I was kidding, but...well...
This one is from me too...it should be called "Hey, how did I get here and do I want to stay?"
Here's Soupie's advice...
15 Tips from Ditzy Genius
UPDATE: Why quarters SUCK by moi
Ambulance Chaser's Low-Stress Guide to Being a 1L
An exhaustive guide to incoming 1L advice over at Jeremy Blachman's place
What to do in your last summer before law school...from Three Years of Hell to Become the Devil
Heidi Bond has a whole section called "Advice to Newlings" which can be found through the link in this post.
Pre-law summer reading from Ambivalent Imbroglio
Once You Start School.
My method of studying should never, EVER, be tried at home, and certainly never even attempted by anyone who is not a trained professional in the art of slackertude. I do not have good study habits, I blog too much, when I get bored I have been known to surf the 'net in class, and I often find myself catching up on reading during exam time because I am usually always behind. That being said, I will try to direct you to people who have better habits than I do...if you would like to know how to balance studying and drinking, or the best free emoticons on AIM, I'm your girl...for "real" studying, by "real" students...sorry, no can do.
Once again, I would suggest the 1L archive over at Blawg Wisdom.
I wrote about cutting your books here, and that seemed to be pretty popular.
Here's a take on first year law school grades from The Volokh Conspiracy
More on exams from me (with links to others who actually know what they're talking about)
A tip on reading cases from Ernie the Attorney
Reading a law school case for the first from Heidi Bond
Lots of advice for better legal writing
My take on grades....and Professor Yin's take on my take (which has some exam advice mixed in)
Top 10 Law School Survival Skills, via Andrew Raff
20 Questions with a Law Clerk, answered by Scott, asked by Milbarge
The Sua Sponte 1L Archive
The Law School/Law Student Archive at Notes from the (Legal) Underground
If you want to just know about 1L year in general, I would suggest picking any blog on my blogroll and just hunting through the archives and reading what the author wrote during their 1L year...you'll (I'm sure) be able to find posts on exams, studying, writing, job hunting, angst, triumphs, appellate briefs and moot court, law review write-ons...etc......
I hope that at least some of these links are helpful. I tried to pick a pretty reasonable range of people so there would be some differing perspectives on these topics. However, I am tired, I have been writing all day (it's worth noting that the reason I've been writing all day is because I didn't finish my paper before finals week was over and am thus working on an extension...see why I point you elsewhere?), and so I'm sure I missed lots of people who have wonderful 0L and 1L advice, if that's you, and you'd like to be included, please drop me a note and I will happily add you to the list. I am also going to get LQ to write a post when she gets back about OneNote which is what she uses to take notes...she loves it and I have had a question it, but alas, I know nothing.
I apologize also for the fact that this isn't more of a "what E. Spat did to survive 1L" type of post, but trust me, you don't want to know.
UPDATE: I added at least10 new blogs (but probably more like 15) to the blogroll tonight...thanks to everyone for linking, and for being so patient with me on the linking back thing...I am a notorious technophobe. As always, if I missed you, email me so I can fix it while I'm still motivated.
Also, where is everyone? You guys must all be on Spring Break too...or something. Or you hate me and have decided to quit reading and shun me. I feel a little bit shunned. You don't write. You don't comment. You don't visit. You hurt me...you really do.
Ummm, aside from my mental trauma over the downfall of this blog, I am sadly not doing much of anything. My mom and I went to Costco today and she spent $500 on me, so that was fun. I got one of their awesome berry smoothies...also fun. I went for a nice long hike in the mountains...yup, you guessed it, fun! I'm sad my life has come to this level of boring-ness, but it really has.
Sunday, March 20, 2005
I rushed out of bed to see what was happening, and here's what I basically saw.
Molly the Satantic Dog in the backyard with a squirrel trapped beneath her paw, staring at my dad as if to say "OH SHIT, I got him but NOW WHAT?"
My dad laughing his ass off and trying to get Molly to let the squirrel go.
My mom standing at the door in her pajamas telling my dad to save the squirrel or she would never forgive him*.
Apparently Molly managed to sneak up on perhaps the STUPIDEST squirrel in the history of mankind (not like Molly is such a tiny or very graceful dog), startle him, and after he ran up and down the fence and the tree about 20 times, catch him when he just stopped and froze at the bottom of the tree.
Molly reveled in her victory for a moment and then seemed extremely confused as to what her next step should be. She definitely was looking to my dad for some help and he was waving his arms and yelling "Molly, NO! Let him go. MOLLY!"
So, she just sort of daintily lifted her paw and the squirrel got up and sort of wandered out of the yard at his leisure. I swear, if it had been a cartoon he would have had little yellow and red stars circling his head and a big red cartoon heart thumping in and out of his chest in exaggerated slow motion.
My parents were both laughing so hard by the end of the whole thing that I thought my mom might pass out. Molly mostly looked slightly confused but pretty proud of herself. She patroled the backyard for another hour just in case he came back. I told my dad that he had certainly interrupted the process of natural selection in a profound way.
After quite an exciting start I spent most of the day working on my paper, but am nearly half-done. I am quite thankful that I chose a topic tangential to blogging so it's pretty interesting (to me) and seems easy to write.
I have a couple of requests for posts about law-school advice kind of stuff, so perhaps I'll get to those in the coming days. I'm also still planning to update my blogroll, but it's such a chore, who knows when it might happen. It's raining here, but still very relaxing, even with paper writing and whatnot. Tomorrow my mom and I are going to Costco and Target...both are about a 45 minute drive from here, but it's nice to get out of the house with my mom and also nice to stock up on stuff I need with someone else footing the bill. Plus, every single time I've gone somewhere with my mom while home, I've come back with a story. Also, whenever I post stories about my mom people seem to insinuate that I don't like her or we have problems, so let me just reiterate that NOTHING could be farther from the truth.
My mom is a wonderful, fabulous, awesome person who just happens to be very...um...unique. She would not only give you the shirt off her back, but the food off her table, the roof off her house, and probably a kidney. She laughs easily and often, is rarely in a bad mood, takes a lot of crap from my dad and I with relatively little ill humor, is the most fabulous cook in the whole world, and is a passionate crusader for animals and animal rights. She is also a talented artist and has what I can only describe as an innocent soul, I just don't think she would ever hurt anyone or anything intentionally, and I have definitely seen her pull over to the side of the road and help turtles cross so they wouldn't get hit. She can be a nut, but she's our nut. I hope that clears up any doubts.
*Interestingly, my mom also made my dad kill a squirrel once that had gotten hit by a car and was half smashed and dying slowly...she couldn't bear to see it suffer. I think sometimes my dad doesn't get enough credit for always drawing the short end of the stick.
Saturday, March 19, 2005
My parents are awesome...my clothes are clean...the bed is comfy...the dog still loves me...and we had beef stew and homemade bread for dinner with a promise of my mom's blue ribbon at the fair award winning biscuits for breakfast. Life is good.
I'm working on my paper, trying to (finally) get a chance to read The DaVinci Code, and have already played 18 holes of Tiger Woods Golf in the usual manner...the family tournament, loser buys the Diet Coke.
To remind myself, I need to tell you about the lottery ticket incident, my dad's new nickname, and the monstrosity of a house being built behind my parent's house that has neighbors filing lawsuits against neighbors (no one in my family involved though, thank God)...I also need to get pics up, because you have to see it to believe it. Hopefully I will remember the stories that go with these hints tomorrow -- I am essentially sleep-typing right now because I'm so tired.
Friday, March 18, 2005
I have to write a 30-page paper while I'm gone, so I'll probably be on the computer alot, hence, it's unlikely I won't be blogging.
I had Chimay on tap tonight. God I love that stuff.
Also, I finished my Evidence poem for extra credit. It's so awful that I probably won't post it here unless I either get (a) really drunk, or (b) for some reason totally lose my mind.
Anyhoo...gotta go do the dishes and pack. Send happy thoughts regarding the weather, it's supposed to be raining all up the west coast tomorrow -- not great driving weather, and not great "looking at the scenery" weather either. It's unfair that the only time I get to see the beautiful area I live in is when I'm renting a car and driving home, and half the time it rains. BOO!
P.S. I had THE MOST AWFUL experience with the rental car company today. I will write more about it later -- but I highly recommend NOT USING National/Alamo car rental company. They suck.
P.P.S. Number one sign you live in the Thinly Veiled Pacific Northwest Metropolis? The homeless guy outside the car rental place downtown is panhandling with a Starbucks thermal coffee holder thingie (are those thermal travel ones called mugs?). I've been wanting one but can't afford it.
1. Who is an author whose work you've never read, but want to?
Ummmm...I don't know. I am not much for "lit-urr-ay-tour" so I don't even really know the names of anyone who I probably ought to have read in order to have something to talk about at school when everyone is comparing how well-read and outside-the-mainstream they are. What I'm saying is that I am not selective about what I read in any sense of the word and that I pick things up usually at the grocery store or Target based on how shiny and colorful the cover is. I am the anti intellectual elite.
2. Can men and women be friends?
Of course! I have lots of good guy friends, although most of them now are married or are the boyfriends or husbands of my friends. In the Air Force I had a lot more single guy friends and I can't say that every single one of those friendships was free from sexual tension, but it was never an issue really. It either got resolved or it didn't...problem solved!
That being said, I do not generally stay friends with people I break up with. I'm all about the clean break. I have one person that I stay in very occasional touch with who I used to be pretty in love with, but we only talk perhaps twice a year. I talk to my second ex-husband every once in a while too, usually about the dog or some paperwork one of us needs or whatever. The only past "luh-verrrrs" I have stayed friends with are people who started out as friends first...and usually because it wouldn't end up being a relationship, it would be more of your traditional "friends with benefits" type of situation. If there is one thing I am able to do it is compartmentalize my life. Everyone stays where they belong unless I move them.
3. If you could choose to live in a different time period, would you? If so, when would you live and why?
I think I would live in the 1950's. I have no good answer for why...I like sweater sets and ponytails and boys in dark jeans and Elvis. I think in my mind it just seems like kind of a romantic and wholesome time -- but then again, I watch too much TV.
What I really wish is that it was better to live in THIS time! The era of "Entitled Victims" is tiring.
4. Have you ever sold anything, bought anything, or processed anything as a career? Have you ever sold anything bought or processed, or bought anything sold or processed, or repaired anything sold, bought, or processed, as a career?
Well Lloyd Dobler, I'll tell 'ya...this question is more than my poor little brain can handle. I did work at the mall in college...wait for it...at Successories! I was a "motivational team member!" I had to deal with a lot of truly annoying people and help them pick out just the right set of Golf Course with Inspiring And Motivational Sayings pictures for their big fancy office, for which I got paid just above minimum wage. I would have been much better suited for Despair.com.
I also worked a Lerner's at the mall selling annoying clothing to annoying women. I credit that job with my lifelong aversion to raw silk. Also, that was the year women were wearing pants with suspenders, and if you are...uh...Dolly Parton-esque in your proportions, those are very unflattering. I looked terrible basically all the time.
I also worked at Things Remembered at the same mall for a few weeks. I got to make keys. It was fun. I made myself an engraved I.D. bracelet with my boyfriend's (later first ex-husband) name on it and wore it everywhere.
I sold ice cream at Baskin Robbins.
I worked as a buyer's assistant at the largest grocery distribution co-op in the southeast. My job was to order all the cigarettes every morning for all the stores. So I would call and read off this huge list every morning "100 Swisher Sweets, 200 Marlboro Full Flavor, 175 Merit Ultra Lights"...etc. It was a fun job and I got to know all the food company representatives. Most of them were slightly nervous older men (I was 20 at the time) and they would always bring me presents from their companies when they came calling on the food buyers. Every day I would go home with a CASE of hershey's products, or a CASE of Good Humor ice cream stuff.
I've worked at a lot of other places too that probably fit the criteria - but I think you get the picture.
5. They're going to make a movie about your life. What's the theme song?
Last night when this email went out I said I was calling "Why Don't We Get Drunk And Screw", but that's because I was drunk and didn't realize it was for a MOVIE! (yes, I sense the irony). Let's just say that's not what I want to be remembered for.
I think I would probably have to go with either "Please Don't Say Manana if You Don't Mean It" (actually called Manana, but that doesn't give you the full effect), or "One Particular Harbor." I have picked these songs at random because right now they are both in my head, and I think any movie about my life would have to have a Jimmy Buffett theme song. But, probably 100 of his songs would all be applicable in one way or another. I also love Tin Cup Chalice, They Don't Dance Like Carmen No More, I Will Work For Gumbo, or maybe even My Head Hurts, My Feet Stink, and I Don't Love Jesus. Oh yeah, and We Are The People Our Parents Warned Us About.
I could go on and on. But I won't. Because I got stuff to do.
And so I am sitting here on my couch basically crying my eyes out. It's SOOOOO sad. I have quite a few friends that are either there or have passed through there in the past couple years and I just can't imagine what their families must be feeling everytime they open the mailbox (or in this day and age, their email). I have all these letters my dad wrote home from Vietnam, and he's not one to be maudlin so they're mostly funny stories and "don't worry about me" kind of stuff...but I can't imagine if they were the last communication that my mom had with him.
I hope they don't make this a regular feature, it's too sad. I can't think about a lot of my really good friends (including M.) having jobs that are so dangerous. I guess it's good for people to see this stuff, especially people who don't know much about the military or who, for whatever reason, don't put a lot of thought into the fact that military members are *humans*...not automatons of the administration. But still. Sad.
I am NOT hungover though despite a pretty decent level of drinking. So, I guess once I get over my decision to turn on The Today Show this morning, which will probably take like five years of intensive therapy, I am going to go run all my "leaving for Spring Break" errands and get Beefy transferred into his small tank so he can go to LQ's while I'm gone. I'm excited to go home, even though I have a 30+ page paper to finish over break. It doesn't seem terrible compared to what I went through yesterday.
Thursday, March 17, 2005
I'm only #3 for this one. I reserve my right to make a lot of inappropriate comments after I have some more drinks. Moustache ride. Heh.
I see London! I see France! I see Boy's underpants
#3 for this one too. I am not opposed to seeing Boy's underpants. For the record. Especially if they are those boxer brief tight kind. Hot.
Honestly I don't even see my site in the results for this, so not sure how someone found me through the search. I am actually kind of happy about that. Not that I think leprechauns shouldn't have sex...because, you know, to each his own...but I don't want to be the web's preeminent authority on it either.
diet coke cabana boy
How yooooooouuuu doin'? Applicants can apply within. Also, #1 result...DUH!
garbage disposal stopped working
Soupie told me to hit the reset button when mine quit working, so that's the only advice I can give you. Also, don't put fish tank gravel down it. That seems to be the trick.
britney spears kevin federline grabbing balls
I'm not sure how to feel about being the #8 result for this. But seriously, isn't she such a white trash hooker? I KNOW!
It's over. I hope not in the sense of "It" being "My law school career" or "My chances of ever finding a meaninful job"
BAD. So bad.
But, at least over. If anyone wants to tell the story of how they failed Fed Courts and still got a decent job and the world didn't cave in, I will be happy to hear it. This combined with my shit grades last quarter should pretty much ensure that no one looks at my resume ever again.
I am going home to take a nap. After that I am going out to get very, very, very drunk. And cuss. A lot.
Monday, March 14, 2005
I was so overwhelmed this quarter that I let the one class I *needed* to be on top of get away from me. I read the Chemerinsky sometimes, and have made a lot of notes in it in the past few days, which does me no good since I can't take it into the exam, but I haven't read my casebook really very much at all, so I have no idea where to find anything. I have a supplement and a kickass outline or two that don't make any damn sense because I'm such a dummy about the basics of the class.
Not only have I totally failed to be a diligent student in this subject this quarter, but I feel my lack of decent 1L class experiences really coming back to bite me. I guess I should be glad the ONE class I did well in during 1L was CivPro, anything with a statute is my happy place, and I know there will be a Habeas question on the Fed Courts exam which is mostly regulated by statute.
Anyway, the point of this post is that until after Fed Courts on Thursday, I will be MIA. Between my ongoing bouts of complete and utter panic, and the 750 or so pages left of Chemerinksy that I have to read and not be able to take into the exam with me (so memorize as well?), I am just not fit to be doing anything else except studying, nor should I be doing anything else. Have fun, read the archives, read the "Best Of" over there on the right by Darwin, talk amongst yourselves in the comments.
I will be back on Thursday. I will be done, one way or the other. I will probably be disheartened and dejected, and maybe even deathly ill, but DONE (and DRUNK!!!). Why did I take this class?
But don't worry -- there's still one more set of exams this year! We can all go through this together for a THIRD time in just 10 short weeks. Hooray.
Also, in South Africa things are crazy apparently...one guy is shot in the penis, and another guy is stripped naked, forcefed cane liquor, and then painted red. In other news, I guess now we know where NDC went for spring break.
Lastly, some deep thoughts from Whorebag Spears-Federline:
Yes Britney, if he is guilty, and a pedophile (not that I think a guilty verdict, or lack of one, has much to do one way or the other with his status as a pedophile, which I feel is pretty concrete, at least in my mind), the cure is probably for him to get into a good bar fight, thus proving he is a child molester with frontier justice on his mind. If he's not guilty, nothing will help him be perceived as more manly than the above-mentioned bar fight. Nothing except maybe getting a nose, or talking in a normal voice, or not being a complete and utter freak of nature. But whatever. Details.
Britney Spears has offered Michael Jackson some strange advice to get his life back together - he should get drunk and start a fight in a bar. Toxic star Spears believes Jackson - currently in the midst of a trial - needs to adopt a more masculine persona and get embroiled in a punch-up to help toughen him up, regardless of whether he is guilty or not of the allegations.
She tells American magazine Allure, "If he did those things, I feel sorry for him. I feel
like he probably feels alone, and he needs some help."
"He needs someone to be like, 'ok, let's buck you up, let's give you a moustache, let's rough you up, let's go to a bar, let's get drunk and be a man.'
"And if he didn't do those things, I feel sorry for him. Either way, he needs to get in a fight."
UPDATE: Also, I'm sure that whatever sad, effed up moustache M.J. would grow would totally not scream "I'm a huge crazy child molester!" Uh huh.
Links: If you have linked to me, and I haven't reciprocated, or if you would like me to link to you, please email me or leave me a comment and let me know. I will update my link list over Spring Break...a few people have quit and need to be taken off, and more will be added. I reserve the right (obviously) to not link to anyone who I don't feel like linking to for any reason whatsoever. (I am SO GROUCHY today...just drop me a line, I'll add you next week).
Because I am in such a cheerful and chipper mood today I decided to call my insurance people to determine why they hadn't paid my claim for my eye exam and glasses.
Insurance Lady: "Hello?"
Me: "Hi, I had a question about a bill I received for a recent visit to the eye doctor."
IL: "Uh huh?"
Me: "Well, before I went to the doctor I called your office was told that I had a $75 deductible for eye exams, and a $50 deductible for glasses, and that after the deductibles you would pay 100% of services and hardware."
IL: "No, that's not right."
Me: "Well, what is right?"
IL: "We pay a maximum amount of $75 for services and $50 for hardware. Those are your claim limits."
Me: "Well, how come I was told those were my deductibles?"
IL: "Ma'am, a claim limit is different from a deductible."
Me: YES! I KNOW! Why was I told the wrong thing?"
IL: "Ma'am, we are just claims processors, we read the script your insurance provides us."
Me: "OK, so what you just read me is the script?"
Me: "So, earlier, when I was told those were my deductibles and not my claims limits, she was either not reading the script, or was reading the wrong script? Is that right?"
IL: "Perhaps you just misunderstood her."
Me: "Well, considering I worked my way through college as the executive assistant to the CEO of an HMO, I kind of doubt it. I know the difference between a deductible and a limit. I bought glasses and got an exam based on her information that it was paid for to a certain degree. I spent MUCH MORE than I would have had I known it would not be reimbursed."
IL: "Well, Tanya is out of the office today. I'm sure she'd be happy to answer your questions when she gets back."
Me: "Well, there's not much I can do now, right? I already spent the money."
IL: "I'll put you through to Tanya's voicemail...BEEEEEEP"
I hate these people. I swear. They are second only to financial aid on my shitlist right now.
I'll be back later. I haven't had my Diet Coke yet and I think it's affecting my mood.
Saturday, March 12, 2005
After a lot of thought, I have decided that I am leaving you. You have never been there for me. You are not interesting, you are not fun, and you are unintelligible most of the time. You do not hold your liquor well. Yellow highlighter makes you look fat. At the end of a long day, instead of being excited to come home and see you, I just want to stop off at the first seedy bar I see, find a booth in the back, and sit at a sitcky table scarred with cigarette burns and dirty words carved by dull-witted drunks, where I can drink watered down Jack Daniels while thinking of all the ways you make my life miserable and how much I resent you for each and every one of them. Sometimes when I think about spending even one more day with you I want to punch myself in the face for ever thinking we would be right for each other.
I never loved you.
I am eating Girl Scout cookies that I bought from a Girl Scout
First off, Samoas are the best Girl Scout cookies. Thin mints are good too, but they're no Samoa. The shortbread ones make really good crust for this blueberry cheesecake I make (instead of the traditional graham cracker crust), but they are also no Samoa. Chocolate, coconut, caramel and cookie stuff in the center. Oh yeah.
Secondly, my most traumatic Girl Scout memory is the year I needed to sell a certain number of cookies to get the prize I wanted, a gold-plated and colored enamel hot-air balloon pendant. I needed just a few more boxes and (1) my mom and dad refused to buy any more boxes because they had a "limit" of how many boxes of cookies they could
Today the agenda is STUDY, STUDY, STUDY! I am definitely going to need more Diet Coke and more snacks, so I guess a trip to the grocery store may be on the agenda as well.
I've gotten very attached to my recent mix of CD's and have been listening to them non-stop, over and over...my neighbors must think I'm totally obsessed or something. Right now, the "exam mix" is:
Jimmy Buffett (currently License to Chill, but sometimes Boats or Ballads)
Bob Marley (Legend)
Sublime (The Acoustic Live album)
Los Lonely Boys (this one has really grown on me)
Ka'au Crater Boys
Gary Allan (Smoke Rings in the Dark)
The Garden State Soundtrack
I have a feeling that by the end of the week I won't want to hear any of these again, but right now, I'm loving all of them...well, I've always loved all of them (even the Ka'au Crater Boys who I only found out about last month, I've still always loved them), but loving them *together*!
You might be asking yourself, if you're stll reading, why the HELL does she think we care about her music choices? And the answer is, I *don't*. I just don't have anything to write about because I haven't been out of my house and/or the library in over a week even though the weather has been warm and gorgeous. It's like a game, what things within sight of my couch can I find some way to write about? THE STEREO! YAY!
Clearly I am punchy...note to self: more sleep.
Oh yeah, I remember now that I promised to tell you about my "vertigo" incident. So, the night before last I went to bed and as I'm laying there trying to fall asleep all of the sudden I get some kind of sober version of the spins. The room felt like it was tilting, I felt nauseous, it was awful. I had to get up and go sit on the couch until I felt better...but I couldn't lay down for about an hour without feeling totally sick. Isn't that weird? My best guess for cause was dehydration, since sometimes I forget to drink enough water during exam time and only ingest caffeine for days on end, so yesterday I drank TONS of water and it didn't happen last night. And it only happened the one time so I'm pretty sure it's not an ear infection. But, whatever it was, it sucked...all the horrible spin-y-ness and none of the wonderful boozing. BOO!
Friday, March 11, 2005
Of course, I am still not done with Admiralty (despite a page count that is truly out of control..he's probably going to choke when he sees this thing but for some reason I am unable to stop due to the fear that I might forget something. I am paralyzed by fear alternating between thinking I'm not answering the question asked, thinking that I am using too much out of the Treatises rather than the casebook, and thinking that I'm just plain old not doing it right and he's going to think I'm totally brain dead), I bet you could have guessed that...but I'm putting it aside until Sunday night so I can dedicate the next two full days to Fed Courts. I have about 1000 pages of Chemerinsky to read and although I was given a fab-yoo-less outline I do need to outline and brief some cases (by which I mean "all the important cases") and just get myself all synthesized and whatnot. Sigh. Not sure that any amount of supplement reading and last minute preparation is going to get me to the finish line...especially with a prof well known for embracing those "below the curve" discretionary grades. Bah!
So, what I'm telling you is that despite the fact that I just wrote two paragraphs, nothing much has changed since yesterday, or the day before that...etc.
1. Tell me what's in your desk drawers right now.
I don't have a desk, and so, no desk drawers. My "desk" at home is my parent's old dining room table which is HUGE and weighs about 900 lbs. On top of it is the entire printed out Lexis version of Benedicts on Admiralty, about 4 empty Diet Coke bottles, a bluebook, a printer, a cell-phone charger, my name plate thing from my desk in the Air Force (a brass plate on a marble stand), a picture my mom painted, a big plastic thingie of highlighters from Costco, and a bunch of mail and a shredder...I love to shred!
2. How many states have you visited or lived in, and which of the others do you most want to visit?
New Mexico (twice)
District of Columbia (sort of a state, right?)
Florida (three separate places/times)
Also: Korea and the Philippines
Visited (that are different than above, and I'm using the "significant visit" criteria...not just a stop-over at the airport):
New York (the state not the city)
Also: China, Hong Kong, Japan, Spain, France, Germany, Canada, Mexico
I like to travel and am lucky enough to have been MANY places (uh, see above)...so, I would say that I always want to visit everywhere!
3. What was the last cd you purchased, and what was the last movie yourented/bought a ticket to?
The last CD I purchased was Joss Stone: Mind, Body, Soul. The last movie I rented was for a presentation I did for my Law and Pop Culture Class and it was Stripes. The last movie I rented for my own edification was Bend It Like Beckham, which I watch about once every six months or so because it's such a great love story.
4. Have you ever sung karaoke? If not, what song would you be willing to sing in front of people?
I have NEVER sung karaoke and there is no song I would be willing to sing in front of others. The caveat to this, of course, is that M. and I have MANY TIMES gone to Irish bars or piano bars where you could sing along with the music, and when everyone else is singing I will sing just about anything. If I HAD to choose a song, it would Brown Eyed Girl by Van Morrison. I love that song, it's my song, and M. and I make a point to drunkenly sing it at every possible opportunity. When I was little my dad would play it on his guitar and tell me he wrote it for me, I *love* that song.
5. What was the best concert you've ever attended, either because ofthe performance or because it was otherwise memorable?
The most "memorable" concert I ever attended was a show by a band called Gen and the Genitorturers in Tampa, Fl. Ummm...it was pretty much like it sounds. People would go on stage and the band would do all manner of terrible things to them. My boyfriend at the time was super into death-metal and industrial stuff and he really wanted to go. At that point in time I was pretty into music and considered myself quite the little alternative punk rocker, so I thought it would be fun. It was pretty gross though. You just haven't lived until you've seen someone's nipple pierced with a two foot long metal skewer right in front of you. Ick.
Probably the "best" concert I ever attended (outside of Jimmy, because, well, of COURSE his was THE BEST!) was also in Tampa, Fl. In high school I dated a guy who was in a band, and his band often opened for pretty big name industrial rock acts that would come through Tampa, like Front 242 and Skinny Puppy and stuff like that (Tampa is, if you don't know, the "Home of Death Metal" and *used* to have a pretty happening music scene). So anyway, this guy knew everyone and when a sorta not very well known (at the time) ska band named The Mighty Mighty Bosstones came through town, my boyfriend's friend told us about it and introduced us. We ended up helping them bring in their equipment and getting to chat with them before and after the show. I have loved them for the past 13 years or so since then. Remind sometime to tell you about the time that M. and I went to see them in Texas and she almost got into a fistfight with an old man (sorry M., but you know it's funny!). I bought a shirt at that show that my dad STILL wears when he rides his bike!
UPDATE: Here are Fitz's answers, and yes, Milby wrote them.
Not really, but I *am* obsessed with getting the "right" answers and having it in a "decent" format, and those two things are pretty much all that's keeping me from getting it done. What I'm telling you is that I may never be done. I think that at some point I am going to have to just bite the bullet and say "OK, DONE!" but right now I still have about 7 or 8 more (out of 30) questions to answer and the number of pages has become truly obscene. I just couldn't get to sleep last night worrying for *at least* an hour that everyone else was going to turn it in and only have like 8 pages and I was going to turn in something that would have to be spiral bound, indexed, and with a pocket part.
Sigh. This has to get done, I KNOW I have probably spent 20 times longer than everyone else in the class to get the same (or worse) answers, but I have NO self-confidence about school stuff and it just eats away at me that the Prof. might read my answers and think that I "don't get it" or I'm dumber than everyone else in class. Oh well. Gotta get it done, have to start getting ready for Fed Courts next week. Pressure.
Thursday, March 10, 2005
So, the morning started out pretty normal, except I got up really early to go to school and do some stuff. By the time Admiralty started at 8:30 I was SOOOOO tired. I ALWAYS have a Diet Coke in there every morning, and this morning I had brought one from home. I took one sip of it and then I left it on the desk while I ran up to Academic Services to turn in a paper, and when I got back, Prof. Admiralty was just about to start class. While he got his slides and computer and stuff ready, I set up my laptop, put my book out (left side of laptop), got my notebook and pen out (right side of laptop), and put my Diet Coke where I always do (right side of laptop above notebook). The bell rang and everything seemed pretty OK.
And then. IT happened.
I reached over for my pen and inadvertently knocked over my Diet Coke. Now, mind you, the cap was ON! I had already taken a couple drinks of it, so it had been uncapped and recapped. For about one second I breathed a sigh of relief that I always leave the cap on, JUST IN CASE OF SITUATIONS LIKE THIS! And then I heard it.
Oh yeah, the cap EXPLODED off the bottle, and the Diet Coke inside exploded out like the baking soda and vinegar lava in a poorly constructed fifth grade science fair experiment (not that I would know).
Diet Coke EVERYWHERE! There was a puddle on the carpet, a lake on the table...it was running off my face, my hair and my glasses. It was all over my clothes. It was splattered on my laptop and had ruined all my handouts that were sitting by my computer. Literally, I have not seen Diet Coke explode like that EVER...and in my vast experience with Diet Coke there have been a lot of shaking-induced "incidents." And I WASN'T EVEN SHAKING IT!
Needless to say, Prof. Admiralty just stops talking, the whole class looks at me, and feeling a little vulnerable I go "Holy Crap, I guess I have a product liability action here huh?" Everyone laughs and I turn BRIGHT RED...I blush like a mofo my friends, it's the curse of being super-pale (or porcelain-skinned as I like to think of it). I run to my office for napkins and a plastic bag quickly, and when I come back, the Prof. has kind of started to teach again, but everyone still turns around to watch, and I can't stop giggling. And Diet Coke keeps dribbling out of my hair down my face...so humiliating. The whole desk is so sticky that I have to move down a chair, but when I sit down my wet sleeves and everything just make a whole new puddle. It was awful.
But, lest you think it can't get any worse, rest assured it can.
As I'm cleaning up Prof. Admiralty decides to mention that for our take-home exam we can put our names on it because our class isn't subject to the curve, and then, I guess thinking that I'm almost done (or that I'm being very distracting), he goes "Well Ms. Spatula, when you drink Pepsi these things don't happen."
I look up, and swear to God, go "Do not EVEN talk to me about Pepsi! I am from the South. We drink Coke!"
The guy next to me then goes "God, I guess you're glad she'll be putting her name on the exam with a response like that!"
Prof. laughs, I laugh, everyone laughs...but I was SOOOOO embarrased.
I went and saw Prof. Admiralty after class and apologized for being such a distraction and he was like "It was funny...but you shook that bottle right?" And I was like "Are you kidding me? Why would I do that? I swear it was a defective bottle, or too much carbonation or something!" He told me that it was a nice "ice-breaker" for the last day of Admiralty and that it was good for a laugh. So, because it's the day of me being a moron, I go "Well, I may not know much about the law but I'm always good for a laugh or two!" He thought that was funny too.
I feel a little bad because he had just announced that this is the last time he's ever teaching Admiralty at our school since the school is getting rid of it, and he's such a great Professor, and then I totally made a big ass of myself right during his heartfelt moment. God, I suck. But I am still giggling.
Wednesday, March 09, 2005
*UPDATE: Yeah, well...apparently I was too tired last night after taming attorney-client privilege to actually TYPE privilege...I guess I'll have to make *thinkin'* my bitch on another day...sheesh.
The Cabana Boy 'O' The Week this week is someone I've been in love with for at least a couple of years now*. He's hot. He's handy. And, under that gruff exterior lays the heart of a man who wants to cook me breakfast and fix my car. That is the epitome of Cabana-hood.
Scott Patterson, aka Luke Danes -- Congrats! I'll expect you to be here no later than 6:15 am tomorrow morning when I wake up. You can help me figure out Admiralty, teach me Fed Courts, proofread my Evidence motion, make me dinner, clean my house, and then rub my feet. Doesn't that sound SO FUN? Also, I'll leave the Cabana Boy uniform out for you...it'll be folded and placed in a thimble lying on the dining room table. You are SO WELCOME!
*If you don't understand this post it's because you don't watch Gilmore Girls and I'm afraid we can't be friends anymore...it's the bestest show ever. Except Boston Legal (HELLO? James Spader!).
P.S.: I told M.'s new husband yesterday that I thought he was the best husband "we" had had yet. He thought I was kidding, which was kind of cute really...NOT KIDDING!
In May 2004, Roger Winter, the Assistant Administrator for the U.S. Agency for International Development's Bureau for Democracy, Conflict and Humanitarian Assistance, told a House committee that it was inevitable that "more than 100,000 people will die no matter what" in Darfur, Sudan by the end of the year. Winter went on to warn that, in a worst-case scenario, the number could reach as high as 350,000.
One year later, the estimated death toll stands at more than 300,000. The actual number of deaths is nearly impossible to determine given that the government of Sudan, fearing the truth, refuses to grant access to the World Health Organization so that it can conduct a mortality survey. Nonetheless, knowledgeable observers agree that thousands have died at the hands of the Sudanese government and their proxy militia, the Janjaweed (a term meaning "Devils on Horseback") and tens of thousands more have died of disease and starvation after having their villages destroyed in government-led attacks. More than 2 million Darfurians have been internally displaced, the agricultural economy has been decimated and an estimated 3-4 million people are in need of humanitarian assistance.
Nearly two years ago, the Muslim government in Khartoum was in the process of finalizing a peace accord that would end a twenty year civil war between the government in the North and the Sudan People's Liberation Army in the South that had taken some 2 million lives. Fearful that the Western region of Darfur was going to continue to be ignored in the new coalition government that was being formed, African rebels launched a series of raids against government facilities. Rather than negotiate with the rebel forces in the West, the government of Sudan enlisted Arab militias in a campaign to wipe out the rebels and anyone suspected of supporting them. In the process, hundreds of villages have been destroyed, tens of thousands have been raped and killed, and millions have been displaced.
The international community has responded in a haphazard fashion. The African Union secured the deployment of some 4,000 troops to the region, though its mandate was limited to monitoring a cease-fire that neither side honored. Less than 2,000 AU soldiers have arrived and they have limited logistical capabilities for covering this area roughly the size of Texas, nor do they have a mandate that allows them to protect civilians. The United Nations has been plagued by inaction, with China and Russia using their veto power to water down Security Council resolutions seeking sanctions or demanding accountability. A recent UN investigation detailed massive war crimes and crimes against humanity but stopped short of calling the campaign a genocide, a declaration the United States made last September. For now, much of the debate is focused on where any cases arising from this situation will be tried: the International Criminal Court or some Africa-based tribunal.
Angered by the lackluster response to what is widely acknowledged as the "world's worst humanitarian crisis," a group of bloggers have formed Coalition for Darfur to do what little they can. We seek to raise awareness of the crisis in Darfur, but also to raise money for the vital work that Save the Children is doing by providing food, water, shelter, and protection to over 200,000 children and families in Darfur each month.
Together, and with your support, we hope to make a small but meaningful contribution to alleviating the massive suffering that continues to plague the region. Please consider making a donation via our Coalition for Darfur blog.
Tuesday, March 08, 2005
During my 1L year, we didn't have lockers at school because we are in a brand new building and they hadn't arrived and been installed yet. This meant that the weight of my books was approximately equal to that of a 1972 Dodge Dart. It was obscene how much they weighed. So, when the 2/3Ls told me about book cutting I jumped right in.
When you decide to cut your books, you may have certain feelings that you don't know how to handle. You may feel guilty about cutting up a nice, beautiful (looking) book. You may think it's kind of sacreligious since you are a book lover and would never normally hack through the spine of a $100+ book and drill holes in it before inserting it in a neon colored binder with your school logo on it. DON'T! Just don't. Don't feel guilty. Think about the scoliosis, neck trauma, pinched nerves, and various assorted other physical ailments you are avoiding by not carrying around 50+ pounds of books. Think about your knees. And you back. Think about convenience! Think about the fact that you don't need to keep all your law books anyway "for reference" because they'll be out of date in a year or two anyway as cases are decided and the laws change.
Many people new to the book-cutting craze may wonder, how do I go about cutting my books? Well, lucky for you I have answers (for a change). Many people take their books to Kinkos, but I prefer the copy shop across from the school that is owned be some very sketchy looking people who have absolutely no qualms about cutting my books to pieces. I have friends that have had issues with Kinkos not wanting to do the deed. Anyhoo, I just march right in there with my books and ask to have them cut. When I come back an hour later, the binding is cut off of each book and what's left is the pages, with the covers on each end like a book sandwich, held together with a rubber band. Each book costs about $5 to cut and drill holes in, I think they calculate by number of pages or something, but I'm not sure.
In terms of binding, some people have just the pages bound with a spiral thingie that allows them to carry just that. Some people break each book up into pieces and parts and have those spiral bound. I personally have the copy shop drill holes in my book and I put the whole thing into a binder. Each book gets its own three ring binder, and then there is one binder that I carry in my backpack with dividers for each subject and the pages, usually for the whole week's reading, in each section. The one thing you have to be careful of is that you put the pages back each week in order, nothing would be worse that to get to the exam and realize you put the pages out of order or worse yet, forgot an entire week in your combined binder.
All that being said, this year we have lockers, and I have an office I share, so I haven't been doing it this year because I leave all my books in my office and do most of my studying in there. Books from past quarters are stored in the locker. HOWEVER -- for 1L year, even with the lockers, I would cut my books again. It's so nice when you're taking all your reading home for the weekend to just have one binder with everything for the next week. It's mentally helpful too when you see just those few pages instead of a stack of big thick books on your desk.
I am somewhat horrified that I got an entire post out of book cutting, but whatever.
Monday, March 07, 2005
UPDATE: I said EVERYONE had to leave a comment. There are 32 comments, which is about 10% of my average daily visitors...I think THL is going to be very busy kicking asses. But, thanks to those that did comment...I have lots of yummy snack ideas, I'll let you know what the trip to the grocery store later yields. Because I know you all care. Or not.
I am still working on my Admiralty take-home. What's kind of sick is that I'm actually enjoying it, at least a little bit, the topics are interesting...I wish I'd paid closer attention in some of classes last year though.
I got an extension on my massively huge paper that was supposed to be due next week. I have been really thinking about it all quarter, I know what I want to write, I even read an entire book on the subject, but I've had a really hard time putting anything coherent down on paper. I printed out a bunch of articles off of Westlaw this weekend and read those though and it helped a little. But there was still no way it was getting done by the end of next week, so thankfully I'll have a couple extra days to finish it up. I promised him I wouldn't be more than a few days late, and I intend to keep that promise, which means I need to have a rough draft done soon so that I can really polish it up after exams are over...I am very interested in the subject and want to do a good job.
I still have an Evidence motion due on Thursday. I got my Hearsay motion back today and let's just say that it's a good thing LQ was my partner because I think her half of the paper got us about 4/5 of the points. I am so glad Hearsay is done...it has proven to be the bane of my existence these past few weeks.
Last but not least, learning Fed Courts. Ahhhhh....Fed Courts, a class that I just shouldn't have taken because I am not up to it. I have a comprehensive action plan for getting a passing grade that involves 6 full days, starting on Friday, where I do NOTHING but Fed Courts all the time. Erwin Chemerinsky and I are going to declare our mutual undying love of Habeas Corpus and all things Jurisdictional. I will be the world's foremost expert on appellate review and the abstention doctrine...well, I will at least be the world's foremost expert on getting it all into my outline in an easy to follow childlike diagram that will take me through each step of each analysis....like Candyland for law students. Let's hope I don't end up in the Molassas Swamp.
Of course, the linchpin (M. that one is for you) of my plan for Fed Courts is that all of this other stuff has to be done by Friday morning. Go go gadget BRAIN!
From here on out this blog will be nothing but semi-maniacal rants against the evil quarter system, my own personal laments about why I am so lazy and stupid that I always procrastinate and make myself nuts, and various caffeine-fueled idiotic grumblings. Read at your own peril...although I can promise that as I get more and more sleep deprived and make up for it with quantities of caffeine that would kill most mere mortals, this blog will probably be more interesting than it usually is. For what it's worth.
Sunday, March 06, 2005
I so should have listened. Why do I never listen? Why am I glutton for punishment?
At least I bought not one, but TWO, supplements for Fed Courts...the problem of course is finding the time to actually read them. Operation Learning By Osmosis is commencing as of tonight -- I will get as much work done by day as I can in all my classes, and sleep with the Chemerinsky on Federal Jurisdiction under my pillow. Problem solved!
Saturday, March 05, 2005
What's that you ask? That would be the sound of me bawling my eyes out for the SECOND TIME in two days over an ASPCA commercial on cruelty to animals.
I love animals. If I ever win the lottery I'm going to buy up a whole bunch of land and start a great big place where animals can come and live and they would never be put to sleep before their time and they would always have a couch to sleep on and they would always be loved and hugged and walked and played with.
I can't watch any of those shows on Animal Planet about the cops who arrest people for cruelty to animals, they just make me SOOOOOOOO sad...I cry for hours. And I want to kill the people, I just think they should go to jail forever and ever. I hope one day I'm the kind of lawyer who can work to make sure that people who abuse animals go to jail for the absolute longest length of time possible.
Why am I ranting about this? Because I've cried over this commercial TWICE in the last 48 hours, that's why.
Anyway, the point is that the ASPCA has this thing like those commercials for UNICEF...you give a certain amount of money a month and it goes to support animals who've been abused and need help and they send you A PICTURE of an animal that you're helping...OH MY GOD, the pictures are absolutely heartwrenching. I wish I had $18 a month, but I think I might just do like $5 a month since that's about what I can afford (add "extreme poverty" to the list of reasons law school sucks)...but if I had $18 I would get the picture. I want the picture. Because nothing makes me happier than crying every time I open my refrigerator and think about the animal I'm helping because some douchebag asshole hurt and abused a poor innocent creature. Damnit.