Tuesday, November 26, 2002


Gnat just came over with a book to read, another plotless series of rhymes. Some are Seuss books - and I know this is heresy, but some of his drawings creep me out. There’s a book on feet (“In the house and on the street, how many different feet you meet!” which is an exhortation to a life of desperate fetishism, if you ask me) and it actually contains the words HERE COMES CLOWN FEET, which is something I hear in my worst dreams. Much of Seuss’ loopy charm comes from his inability to draw actual identifiable figures. Yet they just hook kids; the drawings of Sandra Boynton, which are far more accomplished and inventive, don’t have the same elemental appeal. Curious George, however, she loved right away - monkeys must strike kids as pure fuzzy id. We read that book a lot.

Partly because I love Curious George, and have read ahead to make sure there are no clown feet.


You know, Bazooka bubblegum has little fortunes on the comics, like fortune cookies. Mine was “Ideas don’t work unless you do.” Bennett’s was “People who know the least argue the most.”

I think they were backwards.

Friday was Bazooka Day in Torts class, which we didn’t know about till we got there. The professor passed around a carton of Bazooka for all eighty of us and told us the story of how he decided to become a lawyer.

When he was in eighth grade he had a paper route, and he loved to buy Bazooka bubblegum with his earnings. One day in class, his eighth grade teacher told him he couldn’t chew bubblegum in class, because he didn’t have enough for everyone.

“This,” he tells us gravely, “was a problem I knew how to fix.” So he bought a carton of Bazooka, which cost him about twenty dollars. The next day at school before class he began to hand out bubblegum to all of the other students. The teacher confiscated his bubblegum and sent him to the principal’s office.

“So that day,” intones Professor Torts, “I decided to become a lawyer, to fight this kind of injustice wherever it occurs and make sure nothing like that ever happens again. So once every year I bring Bazooka and have my whole class chew it, to celebrate becoming a lawyer and my own triumph over injustice.”


This morning on the shuttle I overheard a second year and first year discussing exam-studying strategies. “I didn’t start studying until after Thanksgiving,” sez 2nd year, “and I didn’t do quite as well on exams as I’d hoped, but I did fine.” 1st year was listening raptly, asking questions and taking in everything 2nd year said. Why is this so crazy? You ask.

Well, because 2nd year had just finished talking about how she had a 45-page paper due at school today for her 8 p.m. class, and that she was on page 29. Now why on earth would you take exam advice from someone who waited until they had less than 12 hours to write a 45-page paper? Obviously she hadn’t even written a draft of the paper, because if she had she would have had more than 29 pages. That means she’s turning in what is essentially her first draft of a 45-page paper.

Crazy. Why not just save your money and go to a state school, if that’s how you feel about it?


Now we’re talking about bait in Constitutional law. Yes, you read it correctly; we’re studying the Dormant Commerce Clause and just discussed an opinion regarding a ban on the importation into one state of live bait from any other state. The state convinced the Supreme Court that it posed a significant hazard to the ecosystem of the state and therefore the interest of the state outweighed the burden on interstate commerce. Justice Stephens, according to Professor ConLaw, dissented, saying, “There’s something fishy about this case.”

Har, har har. Those Supremes sure have a great sense of humor.

Monday, November 25, 2002


 1. Have you ever made a wish that came true? Lewis & Clark, Northwestern School of Law.

2. How about any wishes that you are happy never came true? Yep. You know who you are, psycho.

3. Do you like who you are? Are you the person you hoped you would become? Ehh...I'm still "becoming". I like myself mostly, I wish I could stop swearing so much, though. And I wish I had better fashion sense. But overall I'm pretty happy, or at least I feel like I'm headed in the right direction.

4. I recently found some job applications that I never turned in. Back in 1986 I intended to apply at "County Seat" and "Chess King" but got an offer from Penny's (where I worked all through college). It was a good thing, since only one of the three is still around. Have you ever applied for positions, or had any interviews, where you later are glad you never got the job? Not really. When I go get a job, I only apply to places I really want to work.

5. While on the topic of career opportunities, what was your very first "real" job? What job was the most embarrassing? My first "real" job was working at the Levi's outlet store at Lake of the Ozarks. As for embarassing, I don't think I've worked anywhere I'm ashamed of...hey, at least I've paid my way through life on my own.

6. Speaking of news, have you had your 15 minutes of fame yet? Such as being in the newspaper, on television, linked on a high-profile site or otherwise caught in the spotlight of the media? I hope not. I've been on t.v. and in the newspaper, but not as a representative of me, only for the fraternity.

7. In the USA, many of us will celebrate Thanksgiving this week. Do you celebrate Thanksgiving (or something like it)? Do you enjoy getting together will your extended family for these types of celebrations? I do indeed celebrate. I have always enjoyed getting together with my extended family, whenever I could. I'll miss them dreadfully this year.


I hate it that he's feeling down, but I really just don't have anything that constructive to say. What is there to say? "This too, shall pass"? or maybe "All things shall become clear to you in the fullness of time"? I doubt that second one, so I won't say it. I'm sick of being alone, too. I'm tired of never having to cuddle with on cold winter evenings, or who sends me nice things just because. I'm sick of not having someone just to be around who shares my tastes; someone who wants to go see the same movies I do, or eat the same restaurants. Someone just to get sloppy drunk with and make stupid confessions to. I'm sick of not getting laid, at least once in a while.

But I do know this, Jay, and you can put it in the bank: Bitches come and go but your friends are forever, and that's the truth. Not to be trite, but let's put things in perspective. As people in their lower 20s, we've really got nothing to complain about. You're still in college, and I'm still in school, and look at the girls on Sex in the City: they're fabulous gorgeous sophisticated career women in their 30s and still looking for the right someone. I know they're just on t.v. (no really, I understand that) but they are representative of a whole bunch of people IRL. So what if you're unattached? Enjoy it, pursue your educational and career goals, make yourself into the fabulous person you always knew you'd be. Build yourself a life. You'll keep meeting great people, trying things out and in the meantime, you've got your friends and family. Sure, they don't fulfill every need you have but neither would a boyfriend or a girlfriend. (And if you tried to make them do so, that's called "co-dependent".) Once you have a life, then you can find someone to share it with. Honestly, that one little component of life is not that big of a deal.

And I'll just keep telling myself that, over and over, until I believe it too.

Friday, November 22, 2002


 How do you make 500 already overwrought law students simultaneously jump right out of their skins? Why, you set off the fire alarm in the library, of course! I'm not kidding. One second it was peace and memo and Beethoven on the headphones, and the next second there's a fire alarm piercing our eardums with its terrible shrieks, complete with flashing strobe lights. Everyone jittered and jumped, looked up, looked around, and at the obvious lack of smoke or heat toyed with staying put. Those of us in the "not-completely-silent" part of the library looked at each other questioningly. Hilary shrugged, I shrugged and said, "This place is going to have to be burning down around me before I leave here without my memo being done." We nodded at each other in agreement, turned up our headphones, and went back to work.

The alarm went off for more than a few minutes; eventually the classes downstairs began filing out and then we in the library decided maybe there really was a danger, and began to unlock, unplug and disconnect our computers -- there's no way I'd leave my computer behind; it has all my notes for the whole semester, not to mention the last three hours' of work I've put in on the memo -- when the alarm turned off.

"False alarm," explained the librarians. Fucking thing; it totally threw off my memo-writing groove.

Well, back to it, then, seeing as how I'm not about to become Fire-Roasted 1L.

Thursday, November 21, 2002


"And speaking of that, there’s an odd sound coming from the utility pole outside. It screeches. It screeches like a raccoon who got his tail caught in a modem. It’s the damndest sound, and I’ve no idea what it is - the pole carries everything, so I can’t narrow it down. But sure enough the pole screams like the damned bouncing around in the Tabasco Sitz-Bath of Hell


and I don’t know what it means. I hate to call the phone company and tell them that their poles are talking to me. Jasper heard it too - his gigantic ears - the family DEW - unfurled and whirled around to fix the location, and then he just stared, unblinking, at the pole. Perhaps it’s all accumulated conversation. Perhaps it’s just misheard syllables, excess conjunctions, random words that didn’t get transmitted. They build up from time to time. You need to call the phono-rooter man; he’ll shimmy up and run a snake through the cable, suck all the words into a gigantic tank and dispose of them for you.

I guess they sell them to C-SPAN, and they get a nice recycling credit to boot."

From the Contracts book:

 “The Discretion Of A Judge Is The Law Of Tyrants; It Is Always Unknown; It Is Different In Different Men; It Is Casual And Depends Upon Constitution, Temper, And Passion. In The Best It Is Oftentimes Caprice; In The Worst It Is Every Vice, Folly And Passion To Which Human Nature Is Liable.”

The quote is attributed to one Lord Camden, who was apparently a great English judge. (If you want to know why Lord Camden is so important as to be quoted in the Contracts book, you're going to have to read that treatise yourself. I have to study for exams.)


And boy, is it. Unfortunately, this time I just mean a quit little blog, more like a blurt. I feel guilty for not posting yesterday, but whachagonnado? I left school on the 11:40 shuttle, just had time to drop my computer off at home, grab some cash, and catch the bus to McDonald's to pick up Stephanie's car, which I then drove to the airport to pick Mom up. The day was clear and gorgeous, Mt. Hood is a sparkling beauty in the distance and for the first time I realized you can see Mt. St. Helens from Portland, too. I've never seen it before because I've never been on the East side on a clear day, apparently. It's very distinctive: only mountain I've ever seen that's all scooped out on top. (Because it erupted back in 1980, when we were living in Washington. Here, before and after.) In fact, covered with snow it looks like a bowl of ice cream missing the top scoop.
But anyway, I picked mom up at the airport -- which incidentally, is lovely. It comes off as clean, friendly and organized, and that's a new airport experience for me. From the top of the parking garage, there is an excellent view of the Cascades in the distance (including the two volcanoes). We went downtown and looked around at the shopping, but I told her she couldn't buy anything until she went to the Market this weekend. We went to the Pilsner Room for happy hour specials, and dined on hummus and coconut shrimp, and great microbrews. By then we were both wiped out, so I took her home and got her settled in and we pretty much just went to bed last night.
Today Stephanie has custody until 3, when she goes to work. I told Mom she could expect me home on the 5:30 shuttle; my classes end at 3:30 today but I need to get that damned memo FINISHED and off my agenda so I can seriously get down to finals. I have all my reading done for tomorrow and the beginning of next week, so this weekend will be devoted to the Torts negligence essay and getting ConLaw in some sort of order for studying.
Ta ta!

Wednesday, November 20, 2002


There was a dense, eerie fog hanging all over Southwest Portland, and the moon was full and still up when I left the house at 6:30 this morning. It was gorgeous, I felt like I had stepped into a Sherlock Holmes story. The weather is perfect, wet and cool but beautiful. It's a beautiful day. I think part of what has been throwing me off is that I've been coming to school at 8 instead of 7. It's nice to be back in the routine.

Tuesday, November 19, 2002


That's a Norah Jones song which began piping out of my headphones right as I finished reading my Torts assignment for tomorrow: Six p.m., three long classes today and two and a half hours spent on my memo. Another hour and a half on Torts, and the long day is over.
Except that now I get to go home and clean, do laundry and prepare for the Arrival of the Matriarch. Oh yeah, and maybe I should eat something. I had an apple today for breakfast, and found a beat-up old orange in the bottom of my locker for lunch. So I'm home for homemade Pad Thai, a little t.v. and a lot of domesticity.
Goodnight, cruel world.


1. When I was a teenager, I used to ride all the "spin-y" rides at the fair and fun parks. I'd never get dizzy or sick, and I could ride them all day. My favorite was the Tilt-A-Whirl. Now I should call it the "Tilt-A-Hurl" because it seems I can't even get on a Merry-Go-Round without feeling queasy. Is there anything you used to be able to do physically that you no longer can? What changed?
I used to be able to eat those marshmellow circus peanuts when I was a kid, but now the mere sight of them makes me queasy. It could have a little something to do with a bad experience I had one night at a circus in Seattle...
2. If you could go to lunch with someone famous, anyone living or dead, who would you choose? What questions would you ask them?
I'd definitely go to lunch with Jesus, and I'd want to hear the whole story, firsthand...so, Jesus, tell me about the tomb? Where were you when you were dead, did you go to heaven or were you just hanging out in the tomb? When did you first know you were the Son of God?
3. On that same thought, there are probably several Bloggers you enjoy reading but have never met in real life. Which one Blogger would you most like to meet for dinner? Why did you pick that person? What would you talk about? What do you have in common? What would you do after dinner?
James Lileks, definitely. I just think I'd like him the most. We'd talk about pizza and The Sopranos and cute baby tricks, and after dinner we'd both leave.
4. Money (or the lack thereof) is the number one cause of arguments amongst couples. Do you find this to be true? If there really was a "Money Tree" you could go an pick, would this really solve a couple's problems?
Money is not the problem between most couples. The real issue is control, so a money tree wouldn't help. They'd argue about when the money was ripe and could be picked.
5. Speaking of arguments, have you ever been drawn into any nasty, hateful arguments? The kind where hurtful things were said that had nothing to do with the fight at hand? What was that all about? How did it turn out?
I try not to get into those arguments. I usually just stop talking if it's getting ugly.
6. When was the last time you had to admit you were wrong about something? How did that go?
Law school is a humbling experience. Yesterday I had to admit I was wrong about something, right in front of my entire Civil Procedure class. However, since I have CivPro twice a week it's getting to be a familiar experience, so it's no longer that traumatic.
7. Now for a slight change of theme....what song should never have been written?
That "Ironic" song. If she actually knew what the word meant, she'd never have written that stupid song.

Monday, November 18, 2002


I just had my meeting with my Legal Writing professor about Memo #3: The Final Frontier. And apparently, judging from what she told me, I need to go all the way back to the beginning (the research portion of the program) and start all over. I need more Law, more Convincing Arguments, more Precedent, more everything. And she brought up points I hadn't considered, and said I should argue them too. All in 8-10 pages.
Okay, I will. But when? I've been devoting every spare minute of study time I've had for the last three weeks to reviewing for exams. The memo is due next Wednesday; that means I have this weekend's study time to work on it and any spare minutes I can squeeze out during the days. Fun, fun, fun. Can't wait until Legal Writing is over.
Until next semester, anyway.
Also for my enjoyment, I found out three interesting little facts this morning:
1. The average score last year on the first semester Civil Procedure exam was 35%.*
2. Sometimes (for fun) they throw in questions about things we haven't studied yet.
3. The exam grades don't come back until mid-February.
Welcome to law school, where the fun never ends!
*Did you get that? Only 35% of the questions were answered correctly, on average. That means half the class didn't even answer 35%.


The Sister and I went to PCC this morning, to see about enrolling her in the classes. There are a number of bureaucratic steps to be taken, forms to be filed, fees to be paid, etc. but nothing beyond the ordinary. The downer is that there are a number of prerequisites which must be satisfied before she can even be admitted to the Radiography program, which is not surprising but still a bummer. So she's thinking about taking a class or two in the spring semester and maybe over the summer, to get back into the swing of it and get some pre-reqs outta the way. Basic math, writing, english, computer skills, things like that I presume. There's an information fair next week on Tuesday evening, so we might head over that way and check it out.

In the meantime, all is a-flutter over the Imminent Arrival of the Matriarch. She's flying in on Wednesday. Tonight, however, is Monday Night Football which shall not be missed, yea though I have law school exams looming on the horizon. Tonight it's the Rams, man, so I'm not missing the game.

This morning on the way to the PCC, the clouds cleared briefly in an Easterly direction and there revealed was Mt. Hood, in all its snow-covered splendor. It looks fantastically beautiful after an entire week of snow. If you hadn't pointed it out, said Sister, I would have just assumed it was more clouds and not even noticed. The winter has definitely arrived here in the Pacific Northwest, but I can't complain. At least I'm not living in the other Portland.

Sunday, November 17, 2002


And here I am, in the library. Studying. Yesterday I spent five hours on Contracts, read my ConLaw for the week and decided I couldn't take any more. I went home and cleaned the house, made cookies and watched Star Wars. Today I got a later start; didn't get here until after 11:30. So I'm doomed to be here all afternoon. Today it's Torts: Trying to work my way through my first Torts practice exam. Hopefully I'm going to get Professor Torts to take a look at it when I'm done.

In the meantime, I'm listening to Jessie's Girl. *sniffle*.

But the good news is, I finally got KaZaA to work on my laptop, and I'm happily downloading!

Saturday, November 16, 2002


"Take a look at this film of Taliban whipping women in the street: this your idea of the good guys? I’d get an argument about US support of the Afghan rebels, how we caused this. But if we hadn’t supported the rebels, we would have been criticized for leaving Afghans to the fate of the Soviets, because they weren’t white like the Slavs. Make no mistake: the Soviets were brutal SOBs who targeted children as a means of spreading terror; why wouldn’t we aid the resistance? If we had stayed in Afghanistan afterwards,the cynics would have called us colonizers. If we had invaded the Taliban for no particular reason before 9/11, the cynics would have called us imperialists. Nothing satisfies these people, because now they cannot abide clarity in anyone but themselves. They think they see things clearer than anyone else, but they’re blind men in a dark room full of mud, congradulating themselves for identifying the substance in their hands as dirt." A not-very-timely but still just a potent post from the Lileks archive.

Friday, November 15, 2002


A terrible thing has happened: I have developed the most unseemly school-girl crush on one of my classmates. Fortunately, I don’t see him very often – although there is a twice-a-week minimum, since that’s how many classes I have with him. But when we do chance to pass, I can feel myself blushing. Especially if he says anything to me. It’s my penance for all the dirty thoughts I’ve been having about him. He’s just so cute. And charming. And witty. And smart.
It’s hard to take, since it’s clear he is Absolutely Not Interested in me.
And he has such a strong, manly jaw!


Here's an excerpt from my diary when I was working earlier in the year (March) and didn't really believe I would ever be in law school. It was one of my first days as a temp:

"I went out to lunch and skipped over to Famous Barr to peruse their clearance racks. I found some things I loved, but even 50% off a hundred dollar suit is just too much for me to pay right now. It makes me stand in awe of the women I see around here, in their $50 shoes and their $200 suits, with their $70 haircuts and $30 manicures. What’s that about??? You add in the $50 worth of cosmetics and styling products, the $10 hosiery, the $100 bag, the $50 of lingerie from Victoria’s Secret and the three cups of $4 Starbucks coffee a day, (not to mention the $40K Suburbans they drive and the $400 palm pilots and $80/month cell phones) and these women are poster girls for Conspicuous Consumption. Am I going to be like that someday?? Or will I be the renegade hippy woman with the long flowing hair and the last year’s styles from Goodwill (new with tags or not, outdated is outdated) driving the Geo Metro or, even better, biking to work each day with my organic-cucumber-and-sprouts-with-free-range-turkey-on-freshly-baked-by-local-artisans-whole-wheat-bread-sandwich stuffed into a brown paper sack made of 100% recycled materials??"


I definitely need to keep re-reading my old diaries. It will keep me from being smug about How Smart I Am, now that I'm a Law Student.

Thursday, November 14, 2002


And I don't mean pink as in "In Support of Breast Cancer Research" or pink as in "Gay Friendly", although I actually am both. I mean pink as in "I look like I just ran a three-day marathon in the baking hot sun" pink. I jog on a regular basis now, and every time I do I turn pink. Not pink as in, "Whew! That was a refreshing workout! Now by the time I shower and change back into my jeans and t-shirt (as opposed to the running pants and t-shirt I'm wearing now) I'll feel cool and refreshed." No, I'm pink as in, people stop to ask me if I'm having a heart attack, a hot flash, or some other medical emergency. "You're glowing," commented Nikki. Yes, thank you. That's my "healthy glow".

This pink-ness has been the scourge of my life for some time now. In gym class back in the day, it was incredibly embarassing to run two steps and look exhausted. "No, no, I'm fine!" I had to keep protesting, just so I could finish running from home plate to first base. In college, the embarrassment factor ratcheted up a notch: Those secret lunchtime quickies with my boyfriend in the dorm room? Yeah, "secret" my ass. Jennifer emerges smiling innocently to go to afternoon class -- pink -- and everyone in the hallway sniggers. And comments.

At length.

And now law school. I like to run in the middle of the day. One thing I've found out about myself, if I know I have a particular time for something, I'd better do it right then or I won't do it. If I say I'm going to run in the morning, I'll sleep in. If I say I'll run after class so I can go home and change afterwards, I'll just catch the next shuttle and watch t.v. for an hour instead. I have to run at lunchtime, it's the only time of the day I feel capable of physical exertion. (Similarly, I have to do homework early in the morning or late in the evening -- the hours between 3 and 7 are the least productive of my day.) So I run. I shower. I emerge from the locker room (pink) and head for the library. Everyone I pass, and everyone who sees me in the library, has to comment on my shade.

It's almost enough to make me stop running.

Wednesday, November 13, 2002


Have the strangest sense of humor. In one Contracts decision: "The lawyer's function is to serve, but serve he must with fidelity, devotion and erudition in the highest traditions of his noble profession." This is a decision not to enforce a noncompete agreement when a law partnership is dissolved. Nice touch, "his noble profession". A highly biased opinion, considering the source.

And in the next opinion, from the New York Court of Appeals about a dentistry practice in Ithaca, a note from the editors: "Located on scenic Cayuga Lake in beautiful central New York, Ithaca is one of the world's centers of learning. It is the home of Cornell University, with over 600 students at a great law school." That's an odd note to find in a case. A quick flip to the title page, check on the authors -- aha, both are professors of law at Cornell. Cute. Very cute.


Actually, just my back has been bothering me since the beginning of last week. It felt like I had twisted the wrong way and maybe strained it a bit, and it wasn't getting any better. I mean, during the day it would go away but the next day it would be back. I finally figured it out this morning.

My big bookshelf is next to my bed in my bedroom, and my alarm clock is on top of it. I had been reaching up and over to hit the snooze button or reset my alarm clock for the past two weeks -- I've just been exhausted every morning and finding it hard to get out of bed -- and apparently was twisting my back in a weird way to reach up that high. I wasn't noticing because I was mostly asleep. So when I would wake up, my back would hurt and I couldn't think of how I'd hurt it. This morning I was awake enough when I hit the alarm to notice. Solution: Either get out of bed when the alarm goes off, or move the clock to one of the lower shelves. Duh, Jennifer.


Monday the financial aid lady has hours on the law campus, to make it more convenient for us. I find that incredibly nice of them; she sits up there in the Dean's conference room from 3-6 and almost never has anyone in there to see her. So after my class ended Monday at 4, I dropped by to see her and spent an hour talking about my plans. She was really helpful. I now understand how a Consortium Agreement works, what I need to do assuming I'm admitted to Tulsa's program, and how I can get the most money possible for this trip to London. First of all, she's worried that at the very beginning of the semester I'm going to be at a financial disadvantage. That's because the financial aid won't be released until the first day of classes here, regardless of when the London program starts. That means the first couple of days will be taken up with distributing money to students here on campus; then they have to send the money to the University of Tulsa, then Tulsa sends me whatever is left over for living expenses. Yuck. The good news is that the housing is offered through the school, so I assume the housing will be paid for when the tuition is paid for, so I won't have to worry about down payments and first month's rent in advance, etc. (I assume that, but it might not be true.) The bad news is that I'll have just paid for a really expensive plane ticket, and I'll have to buy books and food without help until help arrives, maybe a week or three into the term.

So what to do? I decided to go ahead and put in for reimbursement for my computer. That money is gone already, out of this semester's aid, so when I get the reimbusement I can set that money aside in my savings account and designate that as London money. The other thing I can do is take two summer classes, get the maximum amount of aid available for the year, and because of the way the disbursement system works when the summer money comes in, I'll also get part of the fall disbursement. So I can put that money aside (something like $6000, based on guessing figures) knowing that part of it will have to go back to Tulsa for tuition but that part of it is my living expenses for the semester. That will help.

But that means I need to take two classes this summer, which means I may have trouble with a full-time summer job. During summer term, I can get $1000 for living expenses for each term, so that means $2000 financial aid to live on between May and August. Not a whole lot; just enough to cover rent. That's a relief, but not enough. So I'll have to find a job flexible enough that it works with my class schedule but that pays enough that I can buy food, pay my phone bill and maybe have a little fun. Ugh.

I HATE this being so poor bullshit! I'm so sick of having to watch every penny. It's one thing to be frugal, I think more people would benefit from being frugal. It's another thing entirely to walk the fine line between being ok -- barely -- and being homeless. I cannot wait to get out of school and get a real job, one that allows me to shop without comparing the price of iceberg lettuce (which I hate) to romaine and deciding that I have to get the iceberg lettuce because it's 50 cents cheaper even though it tastes like nothing at all. Damn.
But this is supposed to be an assessment of how the London thing is going, so enough bitching. Aside from the financing issues, it does look doable (assuming I can get all of the private loan money I'm elligible for -- always a question). I have filled out and sent in the applicaiton to the program; I will have to submit the $200 application fee as soon as I have it but that's no problem according to the program director. I've filled out the Consortium enrollment information, and the registrar says all of the classes would transfer except the Evidence Workshop, which is taken care of since I'm taking Evidence this summer. I need to find out where I can get health insurance, because it is required to participate in the program yet I don't qualify for either Tulsa's or L&C's program. But I can probably get it through the fraternity, thank goodness.

Right now as far as the academic portion, I have to take 12 hours while I'm there to satisfy my registrar. I'm looking at English Legal System, International Environmental Law, English Advocacy, Law of the European Union, Comparative Media Law, Comparative Corporate Law, and one more...can't decide. It's either going to be Comparative Family Law, International Trade & Shipping, or English and Comparative Alternative Dispute Resolution. There's a comparative immigration class offered that sounds dull, dull, dull and Criminal Procedure, which I would gladly take if I weren't already taking that next semester here.
Then there's the question of which other class to take here next summer, and I have to start thinking about signing up for classes for next spring (this spring I'm supposed to sign up for the whole year, and if I get admitted to Tulsa then I'll just drop the fall half). And all this while studying for finals and entertaining my mother and keeping up on my regular courseload.

Weeeeee. No wonder I had a breakdown.

But I'll be going home in just over a month. Just over a month, just over a month. It's a mantra I use both to scare myself into studying intensely and to placate myself when I feel as though one more hour staring at these books or this screen and I'm going to chuck my laptop through the library window.

Tuesday, November 12, 2002


I told you I would be beating this theme to death. I’m sitting here in Contracts and all of the sudden the rain is pouring down, beating on the roof. Of course, I have Contracts in “the bunker”, which is what they call the long, low row of classrooms overlooking the amphitheater, so there are no windows. All we have are our ears: The rise and fall of Professor Contract’s lulling voice, the tappity-tappity-click-click-clackety of one hundred law students desperately struggling to take notes and stay awake, and the pounding of the rain on the roof.
Zzzzzz….zzzzzz…. Wha? No consideration! Preexisting duty! Breach!

UPDATE: Walking from Contracts to Civil Procedure (via a stop at the coffee cart for a 25 cent chocolate chip cookie), I looked up and saw…SKY! Blue sky! In Civil Procedure, there are windows around the top of the room so I can see a pine tree or two and little snatches of blue sky in between the puffy rolling clouds. It’s hard to look out the windows, though, because I sit in the very front row in this class (not by choice, by seating chart – and can you believe we have stinking seating charts for every class?? At this level you’d think they’d let you sit where you want to sit!!) and the prof stands right in front of me – like, less than five feet in front of me – to lecture. The windows are high up enough that if I look out them, I’m craning my neck back in a very obvious way. That’s just begging to be called on by Professor CivPro and I’m not going to play that game.



All I can say is Wow about this week’s episode of the Sopranos. Last week Tony gets himself a new mistress behind Ralphie’s back, then discards her when he’s finished; and gets involved in a deal ripping off the public via HUD. Par for the course this season; not much action, a little plot development, more “Day in the Life of a Sensitive New-Age Mobster” stuff.

This week, his horse dies in stable fire and Tony contradicts his own order by beating the shit out of – and strangling to death – Ralphie. It was brutal, gruesome, unexpected and surprising. Then Christopher shows up for the dismembering scenes, which were also graphic and bizarre.

That’s where the anti-drug thing comes in. You know all those commercials with young teenagers arguing with their parents about where they’re going, but telling the camera What I Need Is Discipline; A Parent, Not a Friend. They always end with “Parents: The anti-drug.”

I wouldn’t be surprised to find out this week’s episode received a grant from the federal government for promoting a positive anti-drug message. Christopher shows up high on heroin, and as they dismember the body and clean up the blood Tony spend the rest of the episode bitching about drugs messing you up. Look kids, Christopher can barely chop of the corpse’s hands without risk of chopping off his own!

The surreal capper for me came when Tony ordered Christopher off the backhoe he was trying to operate, saying “See? That shit messes up your hand-eye coordination” because Christopher couldn’t figure out how to pick up the bucket to move the darned thing. Tony then climbs aboard, fires it up and succeeds in burying Ralphie’s head and hands (snug in the bowling bag) with minimal effort while at the same time bonding with Christopher over a reminiscence about Tony’s dad. Ah, the good old days!

This sort of episode is gross, repellant and yet also the very reason we fans love The Sopranos. You just really have no idea where they’re going to go next. No idea what is going to happen next week: Will it be more ho-hum financial planning and troubles with a spoiled daughter? Or will Tony get sprayed in the eyes with a can of Raid while strangling someone over barbecuing his beloved horse? You just never know.

------ Contracts update: As I type this during class, a girl in front of me is surfing the Epicurious website. I’m not the only one easily distracted these days. -----


King Kaufman, who has relocated from San Francisco to St. Louis and writes about Sports for Salon, has written an interesting article about the current conundrum in the Best Sports City in the US: Warner, or Bulger?

See, Kurt Warner is the superhero of all quaterbacks. Everyone knows the story: Warner came from the arena leagues; the starting quaterback was injured and all of the sudden the Rams exploded all over the NFL, mostly due to Warner's skill and Marshall Faulk. Now it's the same story, same team, with different names. Bulger was cut from two teams before the Rams picked him up and never expected to start. Now he's won four games in a row for the Rams (and Warner lost four before being injured)...should he continue to play?

Of course he should, my sister argued. Warner sucked this year. Bulger is doing a much better job, and the Rams need to win every game. And did you see the look on his face? I think Kurt Warner likes the kid fine, but I think Bulger has a problem with Warner.

Of course he should not, I retorted. Warner was MVP for two years. Warner is the best quaterback in the league. This kid is good, but he's just a kid. Warner is still the quaterback, he's still there on the sidelines with his headset, calling the plays. This kid is just acting as his arms.

Hmm. I was making the idiot knee-jerk reaction argument, it turns out, and I don't like that.

Should the kid be allowed to play? Maybe. Why not? Everyone has to start somewhere, and he certainly is looking better than Warner did in the first four games. And now King Kaufman says, Hey, maybe that just goes to show that Warner isn't all that after all. Maybe any good quaterback would look fantastic, when you add in Marshall Faulk and the Rams' excellent receivers: Bruce, Holt, etc. And it's an interesting argument. I can't decide what I think, so here's what I say: Do what you want to, Rams, but regardless of which quaterback you go with, if we don't make the playoffs this year I'm going to blame that fact and say you should have picked the other one.

Nothing like covering all your bases.


Is Highly Frowned Upon, especially by the professor, and especially when nothing remotely funny has been said. In fact, it's the Number One Dead Giveaway that the sniggering student is not in fact listening with fascination to the discussion about War Powers but rather surreptitiously reading something from the internet. For instance, a little guffaw was had in ConLaw this morning via Lileks and his Backfence column:
"Dogs and cats
How would the world be different if people had the attributes of dogs or cats? Meetings would take twice as long, of course -- if someone went past the meeting room, everyone would throw themselves against the window and shout HEY! HEY! SAY THERE! HEY! until the person passed, then take their seats as if nothing had happened."


Yes, it has arrived. Don't know if I mentioned it yet, but it bears repeating anyway since I'm sure that I'll be writing over and over again about the rain here. Last Monday rain was forecast for all of the Pacific Northwest. However, nothing; clear skies Monday and Tuesday. Wednesday morning there was the most beautiful sunrise I had seen yet: the clouds were gathering towards Mt. Hood but the peak was still clearly visible. Then Thursday: Rain. Friday: Rain. Saturday and Sunday and Monday: Rain. Cold, gentle rain. I can't complain; I much prefer rain to snow, to blistering cold and wind and slush and ice. This morning: Rain and lots of it. Right now I can see out the library window that the rain has let up for the time being; I can also see the most beautiful tree in the whole world, which is right here on our campus. Sorry about the abrupt topic change, but this tree is gorgeous. It is a Japanese Maple, and it is the most beautiful red and orange with feathery little leaves. It's unreal. I've snapped a picture so I'll be posting it just as soon as, yeah, whenever I get around to it. I have all these pictures I want to scan and post for the folks back home but law school just keeps getting in the way. I'll have to work on that.

And anyway, I only have a week left until my mom arrives for her Impending Two-Week Visit. (Hurrah!) The bad news, though, is that means three weeks until the end of the semester and the beginning of the Dreaded Legendary First Year of Law School Exams. Ugh. During exam time I will need much sympathy. Feel free to send chocolate and Starbucks cards. (And if you want to hire me a male escort, that would be okay too although of course I would never actually advocate prostitution of any kind.) Thanks, that will be all for now.


It occurred to me, walking to the shuttle in the pouring rain this morning clutching my newly-purchased umbrella, that relationships and umbrellas have a lot in common: Inconvenient -- you never seem to have them when & where you need them most (unless you spend your whole life dragging one around); cumbersome; they never quite do the job as well as you wished; and messy when you don't need them anymore. And you get all wet anyway despite your best efforts.
Something like that, anyway.