The random thoughts of an architect-turned- lawyer from the deep south living in Washington, DC...

Wednesday, September 29, 2004

And the votes are in...

When I first started doing this blogging thing, it was a bit hard. I felt like I really didn't have enough interesting things to say (imagine that!) Now, I realized I have too much to say. My how quickly things in life can speed up. I am on this train moving and I am just watching everything FLY BY!

I love my new job. Wow...what a difference between the worlds of design and law. In my first week at the law firm, I got treated to lunch twice (and it's only a 3 person firm). In my THREE years at the architecture firm, um...I occasionally went out to lunch-at Wendy's-and paid myself! These people really do treat you to the "better things". This has also made me realize I really like this! I forgot how much I missed dressing up everyday, although the 10 block walk from work to school in heels is not fun. I forgot how much I missed the livliness of the streets of DC, aside from those damn "do you wanna help elect Kerry?" people on every corner. I could really get used to this. Remind me, some other time to tell you about the folks I work with!

These past few months of relaxing and being somewhat laid back as a part time student that doesn't work have made me realize something...I am just not good at relaxing. I go crazy with boredom if my days are not filled with stress. I have too much time to think and I can come up with some stupid stuff. If I am not extremely busy with various activities, I am not me! Not saying it's a healthy lifestyle, but I realize it's just how I am. That being said, this leads directly to my latest endeavor...drumroll please...

After weeks of intense campaigning (okay, really, just a newspaper article and a speech) I have been elected as the Senator of my class for the SBA. This is the law shool version of the student government. Yay...my first political campaign! Watch out Hillary in 2008...I'm heading your way!

I'll update more later, extremely exhausted right now and have another long day ahead of me:-)

By the way, Dad...I know you are in Africa and are probably not reading this, but happy birthday anyway!

Monday, September 20, 2004

forgot to tell ya...

I cannot believe I completely forgot...I had my night to do a case in Contracts tonight! Granted, this prof. takes volunteers the week ahead of time, so it is not quite your typical Socartic class...but I think I nailed it! At least there wasn't a time that I did not know what to say...come to think of it, has that EVER been a problem for me? HAHA...goodnight!

No more vacation

Succumbing to peer pressure and lack of funds, I have decided to get a job. I found what may very well be the perfect job. I am going to work part time for a law firm as their (for lack of a better word) receptionist. Some folks have been telling me I am a bit overqualified to answer phones. Hell, I am. On the other hand, after this, when will I ever again be afforded the opportunity to work at a fairly thoughtless job. The hours are part time. It's an extremely small office, so they swear the phone doesn't ring often. They specifically told me I could bring my books and do my school work. So far, so good? Here's the kicker, they are paying me almost what I was making as a designer in an arch. firm after THREE YEARS! Plus, I get 6 wks. pd vacation, and they also pick 10 random Fridays or Mondays to make long holiday weekends. Best of all, the two men that run the place are crazy. (Crazy in a good way.) They are extremely sarcastic and fun. I had a really good time in the interview and even popped back with a few witty comments of my own. Old co-worker actually gave me some really good advice: just take the job for what it is. I think I will do just that...I am getting paid to study! (Although I do have to dress up) Anyway, they offered me the job last Monday and after discussing my options with my career development officer, I accepted their offer. I did tell them I couldn't start for two weeks, as I am on vacation!

Tuesday, September 14, 2004

Money's worth

I guess once you reach a certain point, you are really looking for something different in an eduacation than you once were. Unlike high school and perhaps undergrad, it's not just about getting through. You really want to make the most of it, learn the most, and genuinely better your skills, your knowledge, and yourself. (By the way, this is not everyone. There are definitely some in my classes who are there 'just to get through'...I don't really like them much:-)

Anyway, I had my LRW class last night and I got a little frustrated. I am already frustrated that this class has the heaviest workload and it is a pass/fail class...no reflection on the "oh so important" 1L GPA. First day, we were told, 3 people get high pass, the rest get pass, unless you really mess up. Of course I have never been one to aim low, but neither have any of my classmates. (This is the small class with only 11 of my section-mates.) Every assignment builds on the next to the final assignment. Nothing is worth a grade until that final one. This cycle is repeated twice for a total of 2 final assignments worth a percentage of our grade. Wait a minute...the damn class isn't worth a grade, so what does a 95% or 90% matter? They both mean PASS! Back to the workings of the class...each small assignment builds on the next. PROBLEM: we don't get our small assignments back until we have already turned in the next step. Our next step is to turn in the draft of the final assignment. Hmmmm...this is going to be a fabulous shot in the dark...I don't feel at all like I know what I am doing. Did I mention, it is against all school rules to get outside consultation on these assignments; not even a person to proof-read my draft. After class, I spoke with a few classmates and each of them is in the exact same boat as me, which is reassuring. On the other hand, I rode the Metro with a few folks from other sections and they were complaining that their prof. had written way to many marks on their first few steps. When I told them my story, they said "okay, at least we are getting our money's worth." That got me thinking: at $2294/semester; 24 classes...I am spending $95.50 on each class period...and I am still lost. I could've used that money to pay our water bill!

Saturday, September 04, 2004

The little things count

Relative to the South, the people in DC are not exactly "nice". Relative to undergrad, the people in law school are not exactly "nice". Don't get me wrong, there are some really awesome people and there are nice people! There is also the underlying aspect of competition that is in each law student. If you don't have it, you won't do well in law school (at least that's what they say.) Furthermore, all of the horror stories and scare-tactic books and such serve to foster that competition. Everyone has their guard up, everyone is judging the next person's answer to the prof's question, everyone is hoping their 'friend' gets called on and not them, everyone wants to come out on top. Afterall, this is law school, and everyone knows lawyers are conniving, deceitful little devils. I was told by a law school grad (from my very school) that no matter what type of person you are before law school, you will be cynical after law school. Well, before I made the decision to go to school here, I knew all of this. And before I made the decision to become a lawyer, I decided to break the norm. (I usually do anyway:-) I decided that I will not let the next three years change who I am and what I believe in. I believe in being nice, and I believe in helping out the next guy. Maybe we can be like that movie 'Pay it Forward' when the niceness is supposed to catch on like dominos. Okay, this is Washington DC, so I won't hold my breath. I am, however, going to do my part.

On Wednesday, we did the Pennoyer case in Civil Procedure. This case is supposedly the most difficult case of a law student's first semester. So, I get to class and people are discussing what tactics they took NOT to get called on for this case. (Prayer, dances, wearing shirts the same color as the walls to blend in, etc.) The guy that got called on was a few seats down from me. When the professor called his name, I think he squealed. Poor guy, he instantly began sweating and we could visibly see him shaking with every question. But let me tell you, he knew his shit. He had great answers (in between the 'um's and 'uhh's). He probably understood that case better than any of us. Once the class was over, he darted! So, on Thurdsay, I went to tell him that he did a great job. What? he said. I told him that I could tell he was nervous with the Pennoyer case, and I just wanted to tell him I thought he did great. He, of course, seemed confused that I was approaching him just to tell him that. Anyway, I just really hope that he went home smiling and feeling a little better about his day. It's always nice to recieve a complement:-)