Law Students, You Are Asking For Trouble, And I Am Now Forced To Bring It.
Law school? People, what the hell? Do you...I mean, seriously? You want to know about law school? Hee. OKAY!
Law school sucked! The end.
No, not really. I mean, yeah, it DID suck, but that's not the end. I will go into detail
momentarily IN NINETEEN PARAGRAPHS. First, however, I will note that apparently, you all have a burning, itching desire to read about the following. This is how the votes went down:
1st place: How I Met Dukay
2nd Place: Dog stories/dog photo essay
3rd Place: Law school stories
4th Place: Ziz Stories
Honorable Mention: Stories about the Amish; stories about accidentally showing my boobs; stories about getting drunk and falling down; stories about falling down; stories about throwing poop; photo entries of my art; stories about high school dramas; stories about my need to obsessively purchase bohemian skirts whenever I visit the city of Charleston, South Carolina; stories about interesting New Years' Eve experiences; stories about shoes; stories about the trouble I got into as a child (NONE, NONE at ALL, as I was an angel princess. I am offended, madam.); stories that involve conversations; and, finally, romantic love stories about Bo falling passionately in love with someone while they sat together on my couch and drank pink tequila.
Plus, Sarah B would like for us all to fuck democracy. Heh. Dude, y'all are funny.
OKAY. So, anyway, that's the tally, with an overwhelming number of requests for the Story of How Dukay and Doxie met. And you guys, it is a super good story. It spans years. People who know this story request it at dinner parties! It is THAT good! Really! Which is why...I am not going to write about it.
But guess who is! Dukay. Internet, hold on to your collective hats. My boyfriend is coming for you. And probably your daughters. Lock them up immediately.
Seriously, is this not a perfect idea? Thank you. It was mine. At some point last night, I officially announced my intention not to rest until Dukay has provided me with his version of our "how we met" story. And Dukay has agreed. Because it is safer to just agree with me when I get Like That.
But here is the thing about Dukay: Dukay tells lies. Dukay is a procrastinator, plus he has an actual job, so he's all, "Oh, my joooooob, so important, I have to woooork," and I'm like, "Pssh. Whatever. Write me a story now, slacker!" and as a result of this difference of opinion, we will probably end up coming to blows. So, I was thinking, that if you would like to help me...uh, "gently encourage" Dukay along in his writing efforts, please send me an email with "Dukay" mentioned somewhere in the subject line, and I will forward them all to him. At work.
Hee. Oh, he is going to LOVE that. Seriously! Dukay LOVES nagging! Nagging is like sweet, sweet music to his darling, nibble-able ears.
But, ANYWAY. So, the second place request was a dog/dog photo entry, which I will post once I take some new pictures of the dogs. I am charging my little friendly camera right now, for that express purpose. I may even bathe the little bastards! So expect that shortly. And at that point, I will either tell the story of How We Found Out That Gimmme Is Not Gay, or the story of The Cat Food Incident. Or maybe both. I am just kicky that way.
Coming in third is the law school thing. And, that is really funny to me, because I don't think I've ever written about law school. Are y'all just sitting there, all sad, waiting for an entry that never comes? Are you like starving kittens? I kind of imagine y'all being sad, like starving kittens. I am sorry! I did not know! I will address your starving kitten needs first, because I can't do the dog entry until I have pictures, and Dukay's tackling the meeting story, and...uh, I guess fuck democracy, indeed, because I'm doing this all the heck out of order.
Lastly, before I [fucking finally] get into the story, thank everyone for the ideas; I may end up writing about all of them, because...y'all are clever! And I was sitting there, all, "Hmm. I have nothing to say," and now I have all KINDS of ideas, and it is kind of like a whole bunch of little assignments, and did I mention that I have always been kind of a nerd? With the assignments? Love them.
AND ANYWAY. HERE WE GO. After NINETEEN PARAGRAPHS of idle chitchat:
Doxie Goes To Law School
A Cautionary Tale!
People always ask me if I hated law school. And I never know what to say to this question. Honestly, I am not really sure how I felt about law school. I did have a good time, and I met a lot of great people; I also worked my ass the hell off of my body, and often went without sleeping for literally days at a time. I ended and began some of the most important relationships of my life during law school. I also clocked over seven million hours perfecting my game of Minesweeper, and consumed enough wine to fund the college educations of every man, woman and child in all of Napa Valley.
"Law school is fucked up," I usually say. And that is certainly true.
The worst part of law school (besides the Socratic method, which...I hate you, Socrates. I truly do) is the lack of sleep. I missed out on an enormous amount of sleep while I was in law school, though a lot of that was my own fault, because unfortunately I am just one of those obnoxious people who has to get her grubby little hands all over everything. That is how I ended up competing on our moot court team while also writing my law review note in my second year. It is also how, in my third year, I ended up working 20 hours a week at a pro bono law clinic, while also finishing classes, while ALSO being on the managing board of both my law journal AND the moot court board, AND serving as a student/faculty liaison for international law, PLUS this is when I started dating Dukay and ALSO had four dogs, and THAT was a fun time.
(Note to people not in law school: seriously, you guys. That is a lot of shit. Everyone who is/has been in law school just let out a little shriek and backed away from their computers in horror. They are scared of me now. They fear my spooky ability to multitask.)
Let me tell you what I learned about all of my extracurricular law school activities: they will not help you get a job. No, wait, I'm lying: okay, they help some, but they are not determinative. Don't kill yourself doing everything. Do not do what I have done, gentle readers. For I was an idiot.
Still, oddly enough, what I remember about law school is not suffering from paralyzing exhaustion, or miserably studying for civil procedure (which, wait, civil procedure is actually the worst part of all of law school, even worse than future interests and the rule against perpetuities), or trying to finish my note the same fucking night I had the rest of my moot court team over to finish our competition brief, which just happened to be due on the same exact day. All of these things have been blocked from my memory, probably due to an unhealthy combination of alcohol and delusion, and for this, I am absolutely not sorry.
What I do remember about law school is kind of a collage of things. I remember that I started law school fresh out of college in a desperate attempt to prolong the student experience by not becoming employed. I remember that back then, I was dating the boy I planned to marry, until law school so skewed my view of all things that I kicked him out of the house one morning at dawn, before then attending all of my classes for the day. I remember sitting at a bar downtown, holding the hands of a classmate I had never before spoken to, taking tandem tequila shots and crying to each other that law school is the FUCKING STUPIDEST THING WE HAVE EVER DONE, OH MY GOD, I AM TOTALLY CALLING MY MOTHER.
Because, see, law school makes you insane. There are no exceptions. Soon you will be nuts.
And it comes on slowly at first; you'll be at a party with other first years (note: in my experience, "partying with other first years" will only occur immediately after you turn in your first major memo, because prior to that, you are all too terrified to Funk). Someone will fall over during a keg stand, or fall down a flight of stairs, or SOME accident will occur, and instead of calling the party foul, as would be appropriate in such an instance, one of your classmates will instead turn to the group and say, "That is a tort."
And you will AGREE. And you will LAUGH. Because it is TRUE.
Now. You have just passed an important milestone! At this point, your soul is dead. Sorry.
I mean, don't feel bad; it happens to everyone! I myself have stood in a party and announced that the unlocked liquor cabinet is an attractive nuisance. YOU WILL DO THIS. It is going to be okay.
But seriously. Your soul is gone. Hope you weren't using it. Oh, and also, all your non-law school friends? They hate you now. "Please do not talk about the law anymore," they are thinking. "Do you not see my looks of desperation? Have you no shame? HAVE YOU NO SOUL?"
Nope! You don't. But it's kind of a good thing, because the loss of your soul is the first step toward the Not Caring. The Not Caring is awesome. It has a tendency to manifest in the second year, but fail to take full effect until some time in third year, when you will proceed to sign up for all survey classes and something taught by a guy in a cowboy hat, and you stop (a) giving a shit, and (b) attending, and yet somehow you pull off the highest GPA of your legal career. You loooove the Not Caring.
In the first year, however, You Care. Oh, You Care Deeply. You live in terror of hearing your name called. You find yourself slouching low in your seat, praying for invisibility. You lie awake at night, wondering if you should really be sleeping when you still don't have your future interests straight.
"Oh, God in heaven," you will think, staring at the dark ceiling. "I have forgotten what a fee simple determinative is. Surely I do not deserve to live."
The Caring of the first year will make you crazy and unhappy. Which is why, at some point, you will have to just loosen the hell up. And in our case, we accomplished this through a series of games.
For example, I have very fond memories of playing Asshole Bingo. Current law students! Do you play Asshole Bingo? I bet y'all do, because there is some variation of this game everywhere, but here is our own recipe:
During the first year at many law schools, you have all of the same classes with all of the same people. So you spend all day going tromping from class to class in an annoying, sixty-person-wide clump. (Psst. Y'all is...."tromp" a word? I feel like it is. Whatever, it is now.)
You get to know all the other people in your section very, very quickly. There are things about those people that you learn extremely quickly. In our section, before the end of the first day, we already knew whose hand would shoot into the air whenever a professor asked a question. By the end of the first day, we already knew that there was a girl in the back who would forever condition her every response with, "Well, as a former CFO of a COMpany..." REGARDLESS of what was being asked. We recognized these people early. Our hatred was both immediate and all-consuming.
And this is where the brilliant notion of Asshole Bingo came in. Let's say you are taking five classes: torts, contracts, property, criminal, and civ pro. And say there are five horrid classmates that always, ALWAYS have to pipe up at inappropriate moments, or who feel the need to make some sort of self-congratulatory pronouncement every time they speak, or basically just irritate the shit out of you. Say you've got five of those.
Well, you make yourself a little bingo card. And you put those names down the left side of the grid, and your classes across the top. Everyone else playing will have different cards; you can put people and classes in whatever order you choose. Plus, your friends might think that different people are more obnoxious than the ones you've chosen. Whatever! As long as you've got five names and five classes, though, you are golden, and you are ready to play.
Now, in Non-Asshole Bingo, someone stands at the front of the room with a metal cage filled with little balls and calls out the numbers to rooms filled with senior citizens. "B-12," the ball-caller might say. "D-6." This is not how Asshole Bingo works.
In Asshole Bingo, you get to mark off spots when one of those people listed on your card does something obnoxious in a class that is also listed on your card. For example, let's say "Bob" acts like an asshole in torts. Let's say "Bob" just can't wait for another student, who is struggling a little with her answer to the professor's question, to finish speaking, and so "Bob" lets out a pained sigh, raises his waving hand in front of the teacher's face, and announces, in an exasperated tone, "That is so OBviously gross negligence."
This means that you go to the spot on the grid where "Bob" and "Torts" come together, and now? You get to mark that spot. Good for you!
We had a group of ten people in our Asshole Bingo game, and every time someone would do something obnoxious in class, ten heads would immediately drop, as we scanned our cards to see whether we’d just made our bingo. I AM SURE WE WERE SO SUBTLE.
But we did not care. We were not fucking around with Asshole Bingo, in part because there was money involved. At the beginning of the week, everyone playing Asshole Bingo put five bucks into the pot. Whoever made their bingo first – and traditional rules apply, so you have to make a vertical, horizontal, or diagonal line on your card – won the pot. BUT WE DID NOT MAKE THIS PART EASY.
Because you are required to actually announce your bingo. In class. Out loud.
I made my first Bingo when our classmate informed us, once again, that as the former CFO of a COMpany, she believed the property we were discussing was subject to eminent domain. And as soon as the words were out of her mouth, ten heads shot down to look at their bingo cards, and that is when I saw that the space for “Jane” and “Property” was now filled, and I had myself a real, honest-to-God, Asshole Bingo.
Which I then had to announce. I raised my hand.
“Miss Doxie?” the professor asked.
“I was just trying to figure this out last night, this eminent domain stuff?” I began. “And it wasn’t coming to me? But then, what you just said? Man, that did it, the way you just explained it, and I was like, bingo! I’ve got it now!”
Three different people cursed under their breath and threw their cards to the floor. The professor stared at me.
“So I just…wanted to say thanks!” I told him.
“You’re welcome,” he said. “May I continue?”
Several minutes later, class ended, and we were walking out when the professor came up behind us. “Asshole bingo?” he asked quietly. When we nodded, he rolled his eyes. “Please tell me it was that damned ‘CFO of a COMpany’ remark that won the game,” he whispered.
This taught us that we were not smooth. Apparently, ALL of the professors were very aware of our little passtime, and were filled with delight every time someone managed to pull off a bingo in their class. Over the year, bingo was called in numerous ways, but my favorite came from my friend Dan, who plaintively informed our contracts teacher that he'd "bingo-ing to the library looking for books about the UCC, but they were all checked out."
We had other games, too, including Word Of The Day. This involved a mass email every morning; the email contained one word that section members were encouraged to use in the event that they were called on to speak in class. Using the word earned you street cred and the respect of your classmates; failure to use the word resulted in public shaming. Some of the words chosen for this experiment included:
This led to many fascinating answers.
"An interpleader action is like an STD," one brave classmate once offered, before losing the will to continue. Our ancient civ pro teacher just shook his head in disgust.
But as silly as they sound, the games served an important purpose. They reminded us that law school really isn't that bad. That you have to laugh at yourself, and that even the most terrifying contracts teacher cannot, in fact, kill you and grind your bones into a fine powder. It really is going to be okay. Really.
So...no. I didn't hate law school. It wasn't exactly a party in my pants every day, but we all survived. Everyone I knew graduated; everyone passed the bar, and is now doing what they want. It's not easy, but it's worth it, even if it costs you your soul. Sure, you'll be embarrassed at some point, but so will everyone else. You can't take it seriously, so you might as well embrace the embarrassment, announce that the contracts homework gave you a hemorrhoid, and call it a day.