"If you want others to be happy, practice compassion. If you want to be happy, practice compassion."

-- The Dalai Lama

Monday, December 12, 2005

I've Moved!

Why Law is officially retired! Please visit me over at my new blog: Charismatic Megafauna

I think it's fitting, and really fun, that I'm retiring this blog at the same time I would've been taking my first final...

The eighteen months that Why Law represents were some of the most devastating, and most joyous, times of my life. I kind of wanted to just change the name and continue posting here but changing the URL doesn't change the links to individual posts, and I didn't want people to end up on that annoying Blogger 404 page. So I've decided to leave Why Law where it is and start fresh with a new blog. I hope you'll visit me from time to time.

Wednesday, November 23, 2005

That's It

So, I've left law school.

It was great going through this process, from the LSAT to first semester with all of you. I want to wish all of my blogger 1L buddies the best of luck on final exams.

As for this blog - I'm going to keep it up, after a brief hiatus, with a name change.

Sunday, November 06, 2005

War and the Environment

Today is the International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict. Such an important topic, and one that doesn't get nearly enough attention - at least until years after the "war or armed conflict" is over.

I was enrolled in a class called "War and the Environment" for one of my last semesters at undergrad. It was cancelled the first day of the term and I had to scramble around looking for another class that would satisfy my major requirement.

It turns out the teacher who was supposed to teach the class was being let go. This teacher was a favorite of many students and since we were living in the Ward Churchill era there were rumors flying about conspiracies. The most widely spread rumor (And who knows? Maybe it was true.) was the teacher was let go because she had done research on some large corporations' (read: major university benefactors) environmentally unsound business practices a little too well.

There were protests of course, but since there were just so many things to protest at the school at that time they were sort of lost in the crowd, I think. They did show up outside of my department's graduation ceremony with the prerequisite electrical tape covering their mouths and quarter page flyers demanding justice. I'm not sure what they thought the graduating parents were going to do with this information. Still - more power to 'em.

Anyway, had I actually taken the class I would probaby have a lot more specific things to say about the International Day for Preventing the Exploitation of the Environment in War and Armed Conflict. It's pretty obvious that the environment gets lost in the shuffle of the policies behind armed conflict - both those presented to the public and those that aren't. And since "the enemy" is usually so far away the environmental impacts of war are easy to overlook.

Wednesday, November 02, 2005

Fair and Balanced

I post a lot about what I don't like about law school, so in the interests of full disclosure, balanced Why Law reporting and making this blawg (are law students allowed to call them blawgs?) more positive I will tell you that I DO like the writing. I like the memo part of legal writing class, and I like writing out the answers to practice exam questions.

Speaking of, I got one of these practice exam questions returned this morning and it had some very nice things to say to me about my performance. This made me happy. Today I am glad I made it to November!

Tuesday, November 01, 2005

Since When Is This Okay?

In the past twelve hours or so I have heard (not read, but actually heard, in person) people make two sexist remarks, three racist remarks and one remark against homosexuals. The two sexist remarks were against women, the racist remarks were against Hispanics and Mexicans, and the homosexual remark was against gay men.

Since when is this behavior appropriate? Especially at school?


I have almost quit law school 1,715 times in the last 2 months. Each time I decided to stay I told myself if I could just make it to November everything would be okay. Well, here it is November 1 and I'm still here, so I guess everything is going to be okay.

I've made my appointment with Career Services and I've been looking over the internship/summer study abroad research I've done in my "spare time." Thinking about summer possibilities makes the idea of finishing 1L much more bearable.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

A Little IP Action

Lewis and Clark's own Joe Miller has joined madisonian.net, a "blog about law, society and technology."

I came to madisonian.net for its "Get ready for law school" series of posts and stayed for the IP action. If you like IP law you'll probably like it over there. Check it out.

Friday, October 28, 2005

Any Takers?

My blog is worth $16,371.66.
How much is your blog worth?

(Thanks LawMom!)

Monday, October 24, 2005


I got a visit from someone at lsac.org this morning. Can you imagine how freaked out you would have been if someone from LSAC had visited your blog during the admissions process?

On a related note, I've been getting a lot of traffic from "I hate the LSAT" and similar again. Were the October scores just released? I remember around this time last year someone told me that the "hardest part about law school is getting in." They were wrong! At least in my case. Far and away the hardest thing for me about law school is dealing with the socratic method. What if the LSAT was administered with the socratic method? Now that would be hard.

Thursday, October 20, 2005


My thoughts on my future first semester law school grades:

It's a win-win-win situation, really.

Scenario #1: I do well. Super! Pat me on the head, tell me I'm a "good student" and all is right in the world.

Scenario #2: My performance is mediocre. Fine. It won't kill me. It's an "opportunity to improve" next semester.

Scenario #3: Utter failure. Okay, so no more law school. Is that such a bad thing?

Monday, October 17, 2005

To Women In Law School:

To women in law school (or anyone who wishes to answer):

What would you say to a male classmate who said to you (seemingly out of the blue): "I don't know how girls make it through law school. They are so catty, and only want to talk about soap operas."?

Friday, October 14, 2005


To Self:

Repeat as needed, at least once per day:

I will not get swept up into the pre-finals frenzy of anxiety.

Monday, October 10, 2005

Happy Outer Space Treaty Day!

It was on this date in 1967 when the General Assembly adopted the "Treaty on Principles Governing the Activities of States in the Exploration and Use of Outer Space, Including the Moon and Other Celestial Bodies," otherwise known as the Outer Space Treaty.

Article I of the Treaty tells us:

The exploration and use of outer space, including the moon and other celestial bodies, shall be carried out for the benefit and in the interests of all countries, irrespective of their degree of economic or scientific development, and shall be the province of all mankind.

Outer space, including the moon and other celestial bodies, shall be free for exploration and use by all States without discrimination of any kind, on a basis of equality and in accordance with international law, and there shall be free access to all areas of celestial bodies.

There shall be freedom of scientific investigation in outer space, including the moon and other celestial bodies, and States shall facilitate and encourage international co-operation in such investigation.

And Article IX tell us in part:
States Parties to the Treaty shall pursue studies of outer space, including the moon and other celestial bodies, and conduct exploration of them so as to avoid their harmful contamination and also adverse changes in the environment of the Earth resulting from the introduction of extraterrestrial matter and, where necessary, shall adopt appropriate measures for this purpose.

As of January 1, 2005 98 countries, including the US, have ratified the Treaty and another 27 have signed.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

Happy Sputnik Day!

It was on this day in 1957 when the first artificial satellite, Sputnik-1, was launched.

Why the Hell Not?

A New Measure of Well-Being From a Happy Little Kingdom

"In 1972, concerned about the problems afflicting other developing countries that focused only on economic growth, Bhutan's newly crowned leader, King Jigme Singye Wangchuck, decided to make his nation's priority not its G.D.P. but its G.N.H., or gross national happiness."
"Around the world, a growing number of economists, social scientists, corporate leaders and bureaucrats are trying to develop measurements that take into account not just the flow of money but also access to health care, free time with family, conservation of natural resources and other noneconomic factors."
"Most of the important things in the world have been accomplished by people who have kept on trying when there seemed to be no hope at all."
-- Dale Carnegie

Monday, October 03, 2005

World Space Week

"The purpose of the week is to celebrate annually, at the international level, the contribution that space science and technology can make to the betterment of the human condition."

Friday, September 30, 2005

Yes, A Post About The Weather

I love this weather!

I've been a little disappointed by the lack of rain since we moved here. I've been starting to wonder where all these people who warned us against moving here because of "all the rain" got their faulty intel.

I really hope that this is representative of "Winter in Portland."

Do You Know What Day It Is?

It's Serenity Day! Finally!

Come on, SciFi channel - Don't you want to make new episodes? You know you want to...

Wednesday, September 21, 2005

A Most Excellent Public Interest Law Post

I encourage everyone to read ambimb's great post "Reality Testing Law School Debt and the Public Interest Career"

I can't tell you how many times I've been told that I'll "never find a job in Environmental Law", and "never be able to pay off my school debt in Environmental Law." Inevitably the advice giver will tell me about the "tons of people they know who wanted to do Environmental Law but are now unemployed or trash collectors." Okay, I exaggerated the last part but these comments are a very common occurrence. I'm not sure if the commenters expect me to thank them and immediately start looking into business law or what, but their Debbie Downer remarks haven't beat me yet.

Dare to dream, right?

Tuesday, September 20, 2005

Polite Rant

When person A smiles politely at person B it is good manners for person B to smile back. It is not polite for person B to just sort of glare and look away. It makes person A feel bad.

Monday, September 19, 2005


While I am so not a "joiner" I've found that just getting a little bit involved at law school has helped me to keep what little perspective I had left. There are lots of choices here at L&C - it seems like there is a group for everything. So I went to a few meetings and this is what I ended up going with:

Northwest Environmental Defense Center - From what I can tell this is an extremely active group. Lots of people involved in lots of projects - and even a lot for the 1Ls to do. The group is so active, in fact, that it is broken down into two subgroups: Air & Water and Land & Wildlife. I ended up getting a little project from the Air & Water side. So far getting involved with NEDC has been the best decision I've made since arriving here at L&C.

Lewis & Clark Docent - I signed up for a regular shift taking prospective students around the school. I love talking about the admissions process and about L&C so I guess it's a good gig for me.

Animal Law Review Source Checker - I'm not exactly sure what a "source checker" does, but I'm in anyway. I think I'll learn a lot and will probably get to meet people that I have interests in common with.

So that is what I'm doing when I'm not doing things related to class. I know you were wondering!

Wednesday, September 14, 2005

& Haiku

I used to hate the
ampersand. It seemed too short.
Now I think it's fine.


I have received this advice from many different sources, including some very wonderful people. But I didn't really get it until now, since I am of course a seasoned 1L at this point (HA!)

The advice? Don't talk to anyone about anything related to class.

That includes: how much reading you've done, how you're reading it, how you're briefing it, how long it takes you to read a case, how long it takes you to read a page, how long it takes you to read a paragraph, how many words you look up in Black's, what supplements you've purchased, what supplements you think are awesome, what supplements you think suck, how many hours a day you study, how many weekend hours you don't spend studying, how worried you are about exams, how much you "get it", and how much you don't "get it"

This list is in no way complete. I'm guilty of most of them, but I recognize the wrongness of my ways and pledge to be better.

Back to...something or other. Maybe I'm studying, maybe I'm not. You don't know.

Desire For "Fine"

Some days I come home thinking, "I love law school! This is super!" then the next day I will end up sobbing on the couch for no reason other than the anxiety of dealing with the Socratic Method Fear for even one more day.

I can't wait until my answer to "How was your day?" is just: "Fine."

Tuesday, September 13, 2005

Better Late Than Never...

Happy Birthday Kristine!

Saturday, September 10, 2005

Craftier Everyday

Reading over at Craftier Everyday brings back the good old 0L days. My only advice to you, CE: Stay away from the boards. You know what I'm talking about. Oh, and also, on the LSAT: Pick the correct letter as often as you can.

Good luck!

Friday, September 09, 2005

Little Week

Even though this was just a little three day week for me it felt much longer than 72 hours . But ultimately it was a good 72 hours. I've shaken most of the fear that has gripped me since day 1 of orientation and yep, I still like law school. My surprise out of the gate favorite class is Contracts. Who knew? My professor said on the first day of class that she "guaranteed we would love Contracts." And so far she has been right, at least in my case.

So now it's the weekend and where am I? In the law library. Last weekend I made the mistake of taking most of Friday off and I lived to regret it, so my plan this weekend is to do the bulk of my work today leaving Saturday and Sunday afternoons off for other things. And I actually do have other things planned!

Saturday I'm playing the joiner by going to a potluck picnic thing held by a student group I've decided wholeheartedly to join. And on Sunday J and I are picking up our new roommate! One of the visiting law students who has been displaced by the hurricane is going to stay with us for awhile, and J and I are excited to have her as our guest.

Okay, back to Marbury v Madison...

Thursday, September 01, 2005


Like Kristine I'm happy that my school is opening its doors to students from Tulane and Loyola.

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

Get Me, I'm a Law Student

So this post isn't going to be anything resembling polished or possibly even coherent, but I wanted to post something about how law school is going.

I had this crazy fever for about 12 days, and it continued through orientation, the intense weekend of reading and the first day or so of class. I was frustrated, exhausted and just not wanting to "do this." I was seriously questioning my decision to go to law school, my ability to balance my health and law school, and my desire to be at law school at all.

I did finish all the reading though, and stayed caught up and did the briefing and even volunteered some information in that first Contracts class. I spent quite a bit of time paralyzed with fear at the thought of being called on, and although I still haven't been called on I do feel more confident and think I'll muddle through somehow when the time comes.

I'm sure someday, probably soon, I will look back at the sentence I'm about to write and I'll do something like laugh or cringe but: I like law school.

That's all I have time for right now. Oh, except for I'll mention that I don't have class on Fridays and that is frakking awesome. (That one was for the Battlestar Galactica fans among us.)

Tuesday, August 23, 2005

Oh, Man!

I can't believe I forgot to post about the great CD I got from T Sinister! I don't have time right now, as I need to go to school and get my computer all set up on their internets. But! I will right this oversight asap. Promise.

Monday, August 22, 2005

Blawg Review Map - Update

Please read about the Blawg Review map here.

Now It Just Needs A Name...

Ah, the joy of having things that work. My new computer - which arrived early - is a pleasure. It's fast and can do the whole wireless thing which I've never had before. Also it matches my new phone, and we all know how important that is.

I have been having a great time hanging out in Oregon. We've been to many touristy places in and around Portland, and took a day trip up to Seattle via the train. Flowers are beautiful and super cheap here which is such a nice change, and the Farmer's Markets are incredible. We went to the big one in Portland (the Saturday Market) and the fantastic smaller one here in Lake Oswego. (I know I'm going a little heavy with the glowing adjectives, but they really are accurate.)

Orientation starts Thursday. I was really, really nervous but now I'm just more anxious to just get started than anything else. Having a nice computer helps.

Thursday, August 18, 2005

Houseguests coupled with a slowly dying computer have made luxuries like blogging difficult. The house is slowly returning to its pre-guest state, however, and my shiny new computer is arriving on the 24th. Of course orientation starts on the 25th and life as I know it ends - but at least I'll be tethered to the new laptop and blogging will be terribly convenient.

It's been fun hearing about others' first days of law school experiences. I'll be sure to add to the fray when it's my turn.

Friday, August 05, 2005

Safe and Sound

We're finally, finally here in beautiful Oregon. I don't know what everyone was talking about when they said we would experience a dreary, grey existence here in the Pacific Northwest - we have seen nothing but sunshine since we've arrived.

We absolutely love our apartment and our complex. Everything is nicer than I even expected - and I came in with high expectations. Our neighbors are wonderful, we have a beautiful view from our balcony and the property managers did all they said they would with the place (new carpet, appliances, etc.) We couldn't be more pleased with how things have turned out here.

Of course getting here came with its share of bumps and bruises. We blew a tire on the trailer in Wyoming. Interestingly we have had car problems both coming and going through this small town before. J commented that it's like our own little automotive Bermuda triangle. Anyway, that took four hours to straighten out. So J, me, the little dog and the fish spent one sixth of a day sitting in the cab of a Penske truck in the middle of Wyoming. I did get some of my summer assigned reading done, so at least there was a tiny bit of productivity happening during the ordeal.

This left us way behind schedule. We didn't even make it out of Utah before we had to stop and sleep a little bit. We ended up not in the nice reserved camping spot in Caldwell, Idaho but the party central location of Ogden, Utah: the park and ride off of I-84. Kids were coming and going, presumably with 40s, at all hours of the night. We stayed there from about 10pm to 3am and then pressed on.

Miraculously, and to the credit of J's seemingly superhuman moving abilities, we made it to our new town before the end of business day on Monday the first. We picked up our keys, stashed the truck and slept on the living room floor. We set the alarm for four, but that didn't happen. We were up by five, though, and again because of J's incredible moving stamina we had everything we own in the apartment by about 5pm and had the Penske truck out of our possession forever by 6:30.

And then we got lost for two hours trying to get back to our new house. Portland highways are very different than what we are used to. We found that it is very hard to just get off at an exit and get back on going the opposite direction. We did finally make it home that Tuesday evening and soon fell asleep crammed in between the moving boxes.

Ever since, we've been putting stuff away, putting stuff back together and getting used to the new town. I know I've already said it, but we absolutely love it here. It's so green, quiet, and just plain pleasant. This was the best decision we've ever made - other than getting married, of course!

Friday, July 29, 2005

The "I'm Almost Done Packing" Post

Our big yellow Penske truck and trailer are in the parking lot. There are boxes stacked to the ceiling everywhere I look, and somehow there's still stuff lying around. Unboxed. Mocking me and my now-obvious lack of packing skills.

There's also trash. Almost as much trash as non-trash. Some of it is stuff that I simply can't bear to move again. Stuff that I've moved from back of apartment closet to back of another apartment closet to back of a closet in a house to back of yet another apartment...You get the idea. Stuff that lives in the back of a closet is stuff I don't need.

I'm going to take a break - I think I'll take a walk, get some iced tea and send off my mix CD.

Tomorrow: Load the truck
Sunday, 5am: Buh-bye Colorado!

Wednesday, July 27, 2005

But WHY?...

I have just completed the final element of the mating ritual that is the law school application process: returning the letters from the jilted schools that ask "But Why? Why Not Me?" While it's flattering that they care why I've decided against attending it's still a little awkward.

I went with a mixture of "It's not you, it's me" and the truth. I even added an anecdote from an admitted students' day in which a current student who had aspirations of public interest law felt she "had no choice" but to enter corporate law. I asked whether her classmates felt the same way. She said yes. I had to wonder where this attitude was coming from. Career Services? 2Ls and 3Ls? Professors? From all of the literature, and my own conversations with their Career Services people, I had to believe that this idea of having "no choice" but to enter corporate law was not accurate. But what if it was? I decided not to stick around to find out. Of course this conversation was not actually the reason for deciding against this particular school, but it certainly didn't help.

Tuesday, July 26, 2005

CD Exchange!

CM has graciously offered to host a CD exchange. Check out the details over at Magic Cookie and sign up today!

I just finished my contribution. It's pretty random, but I think it is fun. I hope my mystery receiver enjoys it!


Thank goodness for a smooth launch.

Best wishes to the crew for a successful mission and a safe return.

Friday, July 22, 2005

Single Digits!

It's finally single digit days until moving day!

Thursday, July 21, 2005

Dare To Dream

I have always wanted to be on some kind of rowing team. CU has one, but my bus never ran early enough for me to make practice. So when I found out that Lewis & Clark Law has a dragon boat team - the "Scales of Justice" that races during the Portland Rose Festival - I added the rowing machine to my (severely diminished) gym time with the intention of trying to make the team come spring semester. I've never really used the rowing machine before, but as it turns out I really enjoy it. And as an added bonus I'm now sporting some bitchin' blisters.

Sunday, July 17, 2005

It's A Small World After All

While whitewater rafting down the Arkansas river today I discovered that our raft guide is applying to Lewis & Clark Law for Fall '06. What are the odds?

I gave him my contact information and an offer to answer "How to apply to law school" questions. He enthusiastically accepted and offered to take us rafting and climbing in Oregon.

Life is pretty fun sometimes.

Thursday, July 14, 2005

Gainfully Employed!

And the last piece of the relocation puzzle falls into place: J was offered his first choice job! Hooray!

I'm In Love!

My mobile phone has been slowly dying for some time. I've had it since the last millennium. I'm not kidding you. The volume button broke long ago and it only holds a charge for about an hour, tops. I'm embarrassed to use it in public.

This is why I'm so excited to have a new one. It's cute, it's a camera, and it's blue! J and I got twin phones and a "family plan" from T-Mobile. I may have to put an owl sticker or something on mine so we don't mix them up. That situation would be sure to turn into a Three's Company fiasco.


...but fun busy. We're so ready to move, I can't tell you. I've ordered or transferred all of the things that needed to be ordered or transferred. The packing is underway and the truck is rented, ready and waiting.

While I was packing on Monday I came across a gift certificate to this fancy spa my mom bought me for my birthday - 5 years ago! Five years ago I had no interest in going to a fancy spa. Now I have every interest in going to a fancy spa, and so I called them up figuring there is no way this certificate had not expired long ago. Much to my surprise - it was still good!

The obvious end to this story is that I spent all day yesterday at a fancy spa and it was very, very nice. I had eight inches taken off my hair and I love it! This is the haircut I've been wanting for years, but being so not inclined to read those magazines where people talk about hair I had no idea how to communicate this desire - then my obviously magical hairdresser somehow figured it out through my ramblings. Amazing.

After various other forms of pampering I was able to tip exorbitantly due to the wonder that was that gift certificate. All in all, a fantastic day!

In law school news: The orientation coordinators at Lewis & Clark have started setting up some pre-orientation events in and around Portland. I've RSVP'd J and I for tango lessons, a "mystery movie night" at the Bagdad Theater and Pub and of course the obligatory "welcome to school" picnic. See, we can be social! I've also signed up for an invasive species eradication project (in Tryon Creek State Park, for those interested) organized by the pro bono coordinator. I figure it will be nice to do something familiar the day before all of the unfamiliar begins.

Thursday, July 07, 2005

A Promise

I'm making a sincere promise to myself concerning law school.

I'm making a commitment to not let myself get swept up in the tide of anxiety-filled advice. I'm going to stay as healthy and sane as possible. I'm going to do my best work and then try very hard to not worry excessively about grades.

I'm going to take part in activities that I feel will help me achieve my goals, but I'm not going to try and do everything. I'm not going to worry about what other people are doing.

I'm going to try and make law school fun.

Tuesday, July 05, 2005


After convincing the corporate types that we will actually pay our rent every month the apartment we had on an "unofficial hold" is now "officially held." Less than a month and we'll be signing a lease and picking up keys. It seems weird to me that they don't want us to sign something right away, but they say that we'll do all the legal stuff on August 1st, the day we arrive. I did ask them to send a letter that says something to the effect of: You won't be out on the street when you get here.

So this is where I'm going to tell details about the new apartment. So, get off here if square footage and amenity info bores you...

This is our floorplan. The total space is about 1250 sq. ft. - Much more space than what we've been living in for the past 3 years! The bedroom floor is the downstairs. We'll be using the two extra bedrooms as studies. J has insisted that I take first pick of study spaces, and I'm fairly certain that I'll be choosing the one that's set up like a TV room in the floorplan above. I like the non-square shape of it.

There are two decks, which is nice. Also a fireplace, and a washer and dryer in the kitchen area. We're super excited to not have to deal with quarters and neighbors' laundry schedules. Also, 2.5 bathrooms to decorate!

As for the complex, the best part is an on-site workout facility, pool, hot tub, sauna situation as well as free access to a real gym across the street. Initially we had wanted to end up in a house but these amenities are a decent trade-off.

So, that's the basic story of our new housing situation. We can't wait to get out there already!

Thanks go out once more to Shelley for looking at apartments for us and just generally being our Pacific Northwest connection.

Saturday, July 02, 2005


Last night I dreamt that I was the Pope. I tried to interpret this with an online dream dictionary, but they were only helpful with seeing the Pope, not being the Pope.

In the dream everyone had to call me The Why Law the Third, with the emphasis on the The. But other than that, and people kind of treating me weird, I just lived my normal life. Some benefits to being Pope were: I never had to wait on hold and people would put out their very nicest towels when I came over.

Friday, July 01, 2005

Mekong Giant Catfish

Isn't it incredible when a member of a critically endangered species is found?

Doesn't it make it that much more amazing when it is the finest example of the species ever encountered?

And isn't it awesome when people then kill it and eat it?

People suck.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005

But I Haven't Even Been To Orientation Yet!

I'm currently a front page Google result for "bad law school grades"

This can't be a good sign.

Oh, That's SO Boulder!

There are many reasons why I'm excited to move to Portland, not the least of which is not having to hear, "Oh, that's so Boulder!" or the even more cringe-worthy: "Well, you have to think that - you are from Boulder after all!"

I realize that this may be quickly replaced with "Oh, that's so Portland!" but at least it will be something new. And besides, maybe some of these will actually be true. Half the time with the Boulder remarks I'm wondering if the quipper has ever even been to Boulder. It's not all flowers-in-your-hair, peace-man, people. Sometimes you even get hit in the head with rocks for no reason.

Tuesday, June 21, 2005


Happy Summer Day!

According to Blogline's weather service the high here today is 96 and in Portland the high is 78.

I hope everyone has a good long day!

Saturday, June 18, 2005

I Know I Look Young, But Come On...

This afternoon I went to see Madagascar with my mother-in-law. While purchasing tickets the ticket seller asks, referring to me: "How old is she?" She asked because she was wondering whether or not to charge me the child price. Yes, she thought I might be 12 or under.

I replied: "28."

It was awkward.

I Heart Huckabees

Have you seen i heart huckabees? We watched it last night and I did, indeed, heart it. I plan on mentioning this movie in the future whenever I'm required to explain why I never want to be involved in a "grassroots" organization ever again.

So I've joined the ranks of official apartment hunters. A big THANK YOU goes out to the always charming Shelley for her help in this process.

I think maybe I've started a little early as some of the places are likely to go before we're ready, but I have a few good leads. We've decided on some things that we must have - namely 3 bedrooms and a washer/dryer in unit. And obviously it needs to be in a location with a reasonable bus scenario to get to and from school.

We found a really, really great place a few days ago but it would require 3 buses and I think that may be a bit overwhelming for an everyday commute. I've since found some one or two bus locations that would work a little better.

Man, talking about apartment hunting is bo-ring! I'm sure reading about it is even more so. I promise: no more apartment posts until a lease is signed...

UPDATE: I put an "unofficial hold" on an apartment which is perfect. I just had to share.

Saturday, June 11, 2005

I Think You Meant 2005

This morning I sent an email to Lewis & Clark to take care of some administrative errands - requesting confirmation of my final tuition deposit, informing them of my new name, etc. and in return I received an auto-reply letting me know that they received the email, that they would get back to me in a timely manner, and if I was writing to be placed on their mailing list they would be sending out 2006 admissions information soon.

No, no, that must be a typo or other such mistake...I'm writing about 2005 admissions information. I'm still a law school applicant. "Law School" is an abstract concept that will be encountered sometime in the distant future. And surely I will feel confident, prepared and sufficiently lawschoolified once my application cycle is over and you begin sending out information for those applying for admission in 2006.


Thursday, June 09, 2005

Cheer Up, It's Over!

Not a few visitors have arrived here via the search term "I hate the LSAT." Or, more often than not: "I HATE THE LSAT!!!"

While it is unfortunate that perky Why Law (the blog, not the me) is the resulting destination of such a negative google, it makes me laugh every time - especially since that particular post is about how I didn't, in fact, hate the LSAT.

Smile, June LSATers, and remember: You are not your LSAT score!

Just Some Pictures I Thought You Might Like...

Monday, June 06, 2005

Final Count: Why Law 4, Coma 0

Okay, so I know I said this particular topic was over and done with, but I just got the news: I not only got an A on my Dante final (the last from the coma semester) - but I got an A in the course! Yeah, baby, you know what that means - Coma semester final GPA: 4.0!

I'm giddy with joy!

Saturday, June 04, 2005

Summit Push, Indeed

Oh, man! Why didn't we think of this first?

It would be a pricey location, but the pictures would be fabulous!

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Monday, May 30, 2005

Just Married

We're home and married! The wedding was perfect, the honeymoon was fantastic. We couldn't be happier. More pictures to come...

Friday, May 20, 2005

See You On The Flip Side

Tonight all the relatives come into town and the wedding craziness begins - and won't end until we finally take off for the honeymoon. It's nice to finally have all the planning over and done with. All that's left is the final summit push to the big event on Sunday!

Tuesday, May 17, 2005

The Right To Vote

This news is nothing less than awesome. I heard first thing this morning from my friend in Kuwait who is just ecstatic. I'm so happy that she and every woman in her country now have this voice in their political system. Here's hoping that this is just one step of many.

I Hardly Knew Thee

Finally, finally...This is my last post talking about my "old finals from the coma semester" because - I just took my last one! I never have to read another word written by Dante ever, ever again!

Goodbye Fall Semester of 2004!

Friday, May 13, 2005

Catching Up

Well, final grades are finally in and for those of you playing along at home I did indeed pass all of my classes. So that graduation thing wasn't a scam after all. I do have some things to finish up over the summer but it's all under control.

I've been loving the new iPod. I'm not much of a "music person" but I really like what I like. I got iPodder but have yet to find any great podcasts (other than Evan's, of course) Does anyone have any favorite podcasts to suggest?

In law school news, the school put up some orientation information on the website. There is, apparently, required summer reading to come and our first legal writing assignment will be given on the first day of orientation and due on the second. Also our schedules and book lists will be given on that day, and we are to purchase our books at that same time. Of course, they note, financial aid will not be available until the following Monday so we are to be prepared with that spare cash we will have after our moves. How much do law school books cost? I'm guessing it's going to be $400-$500 for the first semester. For those of you in the know - Am I close?

Sunday, May 08, 2005


Two weeks from today I'll be married. How weird is that?

I'm 28 today. Is that old? I can't tell.

I'm using my brand new iPod for the first time today! It was a graduation present. And it's pink!

Today I'm still waiting on my final grades. Did I really graduate? I'm not good at the waiting.

Thursday, May 05, 2005


I don't know what it means, but graduating on 05-05-05 is pretty cool, I think!

Yay, graduation! Bring it!

Wednesday, May 04, 2005


What can I say that won't sound completely cheesey?

I'm getting really excited about graduation tomorrow. Up until now I've really just been tired. This has been a very trying semester. Learning how to deal with my exciting new diabetes, studying for and taking my finals from fall semester, taking my regular classes, getting law school decisions and picking one to attend, planning a wedding and dealing with the surprising amount of drama that has gone along with it - All in one neat four month package.

I've learned a lot in college. I've enjoyed my major and as much as I complain about it I'm glad I attended CU, if only for the opportunity to major in exactly what I wanted to. During these last four months I've learned a lot about myself and how much I can handle. I've had to question my priorities, and even my commitment to this whole law school thing.

I questioned whether I can (or even want to) handle the stress of law school with my new set of circumstances. My ultimate answer is yes, I think so. Maybe I'll approach the whole thing differently than I would have, but I believe that I can "do law school" - and, perhaps more importantly, that I still want to and there's nothing else I would rather do next.

Can't Talk...Studying...

Interested in the debate regarding the teaching of evolution in schools? Check out this great post by Kelly over at A Pondering of Fools.

Tuesday, May 03, 2005

Me 3, Coma 0

I just received my final grade for Physics from last semester after taking the final a couple of weeks ago.

I got an A! Ha ha coma - Foiled again!

Monday, May 02, 2005

Something Old, Something New

Last night J and I watched the old BBC Hitchhiker's Guide mini-series and then immediately went to the new movie. Good times! I would watch the new version again just for the dolphin song.

Wednesday, April 27, 2005

It's Funny Because It's True

During a recent study break this made me laugh out loud.

Tuesday, April 26, 2005

No More Games, I'ma Change What You Call Rage

Today at school I overheard two students prepping for the LSAT discovering that they both listen to Eminem's "Lose Yourself" before each practice test.

I wonder what Eminem's reaction would be if he was told that overachievers preparing for the Law School Admission Test chose his song to get all pumped up to fill in one of five bubbles depending on the answer arrived at through the application of logical and analytical reasoning.

Never Let Them See You Sweat

Student presentations suck. Watching them sucks. Giving them especially sucks.

Part of today - the part where I'm boring my classmates to tears - is going to suck.

I'm not ashamed to admit that I'm going to need a little retail therapy later.

The good news is that after this fiasco the semester is more than less over.


UPDATE: My Presentation Is Over. A Haiku:

Great relief. Free from
the shackles of Powerpoint.
Ended with applause.

Sunday, April 24, 2005

Turn Down the World...

I really, really want some noise canceling headphones. Browsing on Amazon, these seem to be the favorite, but I'm wondering if anyone has any other recommendations.

In other news, the word of the day is stress. Finishing school and the wedding plans have whipped themselves into a relentless screeching frenzy and there's no real end in sight. But I refuse to whine about it any more than I absolutely have to.

The more positive news is that I have finally finished my huge Powerpoint presentation for my talk on Tuesday, and my term paper for the same class is nearing the home stretch.

For the wedding, the last vendor - the officiant - has been booked. (A very nice judge. We found her on the city's website. We were both relieved to have found someone with no religious ties.) The hair and makeup have been practiced, the food has been tasted, the cake has been chosen (We went with one larger cake with a bunch of smaller versions around it - so cute!). Next week is final dress fitting (Of course between now and Thursday I need to lose about 4 pounds...), tux renting and marriage license getting. (Is it too late to elope?)

Wednesday, April 20, 2005

Stress Relief Tip #1

Take pictures of baby geese.

Saturday, April 16, 2005

Why Law the Porn Star

You know how sometimes it's fun to google yourself and others you know? Well, after I'm married, when someone is bored and googles my new name, they will find miles of porn.

Yes, my new name also belongs to a porn star. That's just absolutely fantastic. I'm going to be in law school and that guy I'll sit next to in Con Law or whatever is going to think to himself, "Hmm, I'm bored. I'm going to google people in my row." He's going to know my name because, you know, we sit next to each other, and he's going to come across these thousands of links that have not-very-nice names. He's not going to be able to click on them because he doesn't want to get busted for looking at porn in class so instead he's going to IM his buddy who sits in the back of the class with, "Dude, check it out. That chick sitting next to me does porn! I'm serious!" Then he's going to show the IM to his new girlfriend that sits next to him, and she is going to laugh and point and send a mass IM to all of her friends because she is one of those popular girls who has lots of friends to tell gossip to, and it is going to spread like wildfire that I do porn.

Absolutely fantastic.


While walking home yesterday I was suddenly surrounded by 15,000 butterflies. I thought that maybe I was living in a Disney movie now, but it turns out that it was normal migratory behavior, but in record numbers.

Friday, April 15, 2005

My Turn!

The lovely and talented CM said I should, so here you go:

1. You're stuck inside Fahrenheit 451, which book do you want to be saved?

I had to skip this one and come back to it last. I guess I'm supposed to pick a book that positively influences people, not just something that I like. In which case, I will find a very thorough, accurate worldwide history book and save that.

2. Have you ever had a crush on a fictional character?

Tons of times. I think this is supposed to be all about books, so I will answer with the first book-crush I can remember: David from Run Softly, Go Fast by Barbara Wersba. I read this book in an English class during my last semester of high school. I actually stole a copy the day I dropped out. I can safely say this book changed my life. Anyway, to the crush part - Who wouldn't love a character that wakes up early and finds bottles to recycle so he can buy his new girlfriend a perfect orange? So sweet...

3. The last book you purchased?

Teach Yourself Japanese
by Helen Ballhatchet and Stefan Kaiser.

4. What are you currently reading?

Antarctica by Kim Stanley Robinson and Starting Off Right in Law School by Carolyn J. Nygren.

5. Five books you would take to a deserted island?

Being forced to read (or watch) the same thing over and over again is a fear of mine. So I guess I would find the five most comprehensive "Learn This Language" books and bring those. At least this way I would be doing something during the stranded time other than just reading and re-reading.

So now I need to pick three people that a) haven't done this already, b) are likely to read this and c) are supercool. I pick Janine, Shelley and SG.

Human Sovereignty! Part 2

This symposium was chock full of good, clean, nerdy fun. The lectures, especially those by Chris Chyba and Fred Adams, were amazing. I strongly encourage anyone attending the University of Michigan to go and see a talk by Dr. Adams if you have a chance. Or anyone, really, it's just that he teaches there and therefore those in attendance would probably have the most opportunity to do so.

Anyway, yes, the lectures were good, but it's the Q&A that I really want to talk about. You see, J and I ran into an old friend: Mr. Human Sovereignty Guy ! He asked his question right after the old man who just had to tell the panel about his experience of feeling at one with the universe in "every atom of his body" and he is sure we exist so the "universe can feel itself." I'm not kidding you.

Anyway, back to Human Sovereignty Guy. He directed his question to the Carl Sagan Chair for the Study of Life in the Universe at the SETI Institute, Dr. Chris Chyba: Do you believe, he asked, that aliens are visiting us and living among us? And if so, what do you think their intentions are? I'm pretty sure he's still concerned that we just aren't safe, and that it is his duty to seek out all presentations at the University of Colorado at Boulder campus to voice his concerns in order to save us all from the certain desovereignizing of humankind.

I was so stunned (and embarrassed) that I don't even remember what the response was, but I do remember that the moderator of the panel shut down his follow-up (How do you think we should treat the aliens when they get here?) with a curt, "Please check out any of the popular movies such as 'Independence Day' or 'Men In Black' for an answer to your question."

We also made a new friend, Mr. Planet X. His question was about this "new planet" he had "read about" and he was sure it was the "planet that all the pre-Judeo Christian religions believe the gods live on." The panel assured him that they had no information regarding such a planet. Mr. Planet X didn't seem convinced.

Thursday, April 14, 2005

Three Down, One To Go

My third of four finals from last semester - Physics - is in the bag.

This has been a challenging four months.

It's doubtful that I'll be able to get prepared for my Purgatory exam by finals time for the current semester, but my Dante professor assured me that taking it over the summer will be just fine. So long as I have a diploma to show the law school in August, I'm happy.

Wednesday, April 13, 2005

Classy... (Updated)

While I am sticking to my vow of not reading any of the law school boards I did check out the XOXO thread linked to from JD2B about Justice Scalia's NYU visit. After glancing over the conversation I wrote it off to just more talk until I read this article, specifically this portion:

In asking about Scalia's dissent in Lawrence v. Texas and his view
that privacy is not constitutionally protected, Eric Berndt, a law student, shocked the crowd by asking, "Do you sodomize your wife?"

Scalia refused to answer the question while the crowd gasped and the administrators promptly turned off Berndt's microphone.

Very classy. I have to agree that perhaps Mr. Berndt could have found a more productive (and mature) manner in which to phrase his question. One that Justice Scalia would have actually answered with a response that could have contributed to the discussion regarding privacy. Instead the result was simply an emotional response from the crowd and a line in the school paper.

Now, obviously I wasn't there and perhaps this article took the incident and twisted it to make Mr. Berndt's question appear obnoxious by taking that one line out of a longer quote, and the question "Do you sodomize your wife?" was actually appropriate in context.

This incident makes me think about the question of how to respect an office or other position (such as President of the United States, or Supreme Court Justice) when you strongly disagree with, and perhaps even personally dislike, the person holding the position. I think that the respect of the position doesn't mean that the individual shouldn't be criticized, but it can (and maybe should) change the way the criticism is expressed.

Update: Wonkette has an email response from Eric Berndt (linked to by JD2B) Some excerpts:

"It should be clear that I intended to be offensive, obnoxious, and inflammatory. There is a time to discuss and there are times when acts and opposition are necessary. Debate is useless when one participant denies the full dignity of the other."

"...I did have a legal point: Justice Kennedy's majority opinion in Lawrence asked whether criminalizing homosexual conduct advanced a state interest "which could justify the intrusion into the personal and private life of the individual." Scalia did not answer this question in his dissent because he believed the state need only assert a legitimate interest to defeat non-fundamental liberties. I basically asked him this question again - it is now the law of the land. He said he did not know whether the interest was significant enough. I then asked him if he sodomizes his wife to subject his intimate relations to the scrutiny he cavalierly would allow others - by force, if necessary"

"We protestors did not embarrass NYU, Scalia embarrassed NYU. We stood up to a bigot for the values that make NYU more than a great place to learn the law. I repeat my willingess to discuss this issue calmly with anyone who respects my identity as a gay man."

Tuesday, April 12, 2005

Sticks and Stones...

I consider myself to be a nice person. I smile, and say please, and thank you. I try to help out where I can. I try not to get in anyone's way, and try to always say excuse me when I do.

That said, I was waiting at the bus stop after class today, just reading the Daily and minding my own business. Suddenly, a screech of tires, and honking...and a sharp pain as a rock hits me on the side of my head. This immediately followed by a shout of, "Bitch!" and a vanful of jackass male laughter.

I didn't know them, they didn't know me. The worst part was - no one in the large crowd at the stop bothered to ask me if I was okay, and a few guys even laughed.

I'm having a hard time believing in humanity today.


The law school discussion boards are such an incredible waste of time. Enough is enough - I'm done with 'em.

Monday, April 11, 2005

Great News!

J was officially accepted into his Master's program at Portland State University!

Oh Boy!

Another early wedding present: A digital camera! Finally!

We have wanted a decent digital camera for, well, since digital cameras became decent. We have an old one from years ago that's just about the size of our dog. Our dog is small, but still way too big for a camera.

Sunday, April 10, 2005


Yes, I'm going to blog about the weather. I'm sorry.

Yesterday J and I walked the dog in light clothing. The day before I wore shorts to school.

Just now the news called the current conditions: "The Blizzard of 2005"

I'm sitting in my living room, procrastinating. I should be working on a paper - I'll get to it. Eventually.

Poor J is at the airport, trying to get to a conference for work in Ohio. His original flight was supposed to take off at 10:30am, but that flight was cancelled late last night so he was rebooked on one that should've taken off at 6am. Poor guy, he got up at 3am, made it to the airport, sat on the runway for several hours and then was unboarded.

His parents are in Utah and were supposed to drive back tomorrow morning. Driving back means taking mountain passes with a big old truck and trailer. I highly doubt that's happening.

My sister is also supposed to fly home from San Francisco tomorrow morning. They are saying 6"-15" additional snow at Denver International by tomorrow at 10am, so that's not looking promising.

I've lost power in the apartment about 6 times since I started this post. My TiVo isn't happy.

Friday, April 08, 2005

Comment Notification?

This is lame, but I have to ask here because Blogger's support form is broken (!) -

Is anyone else having problems with not being notified of new comments via email?

Update: Never mind, it seems to be working again.

Thursday, April 07, 2005


One of the most jaw-clenching aggravations about going to a school with 30,000 other students is the way one is reduced to being just a number in the system. Especially when it comes to departments such as Financial Aid.

All during my undergraduate experience, I think there have been only 2 semesters when financial aid has gone smoothly and I didn't have to go in and straighten something out. Sometimes the people are nice (especially when dealing with those people higher up in the pecking order) and other times people have been so incredibly rude I've been dumbstruck.

I bring this up now because I just received tangible confirmation of my choice to not attend CU Law, from none other than the Financial Aid Office. You see, I have lived in Colorado my entire life. Even while studying in Arizona for that one semester I still paid rent here and therefore retained permanent residency.

I just received my financial aid award from CU Law. Yes, you guessed it - I was packaged as a Non-Resident. Am I happy that I don't have to deal with straightening out yet another CU Financial Aid mistake? Especially one that had me paying an additional $16,000 in tuition for 1L? Hell yeah!

Wednesday, April 06, 2005

Soup Is Good Food...

From the NY Times "Food Companies Test Flavorings That Can Mimic Sugar, Salt or MSG":
But Senomyx maintains that its new products are safe because they will be used in tiny quantities.

Yes, because a small amount of something has never hurt anybody...Right? But, seriously, don't worry:
Since Senomyx's flavor compounds will be used in small proportions (less than one part per million), the company is able to bypass the lengthy F.D.A. approval process required to get food additives on the market.

Always remember: What is good for Kraft's bottom line is good for you!

Tuesday, April 05, 2005

Moving Advice Request

Update: Edited for the more literal among us...

As you know, we're moving across the country 1247 miles (or 968 as the crow flies) from Colorado to Oregon. I want to shoot for mid/late July while J is leaning more toward early August.

I've never moved out of state before, and am unsure about some things. For example, we will not be able to take a trip out beforehand to look at houses. Do we just lease a place over the phone? That kind of freaks me out, not being able to see the house, the neighborhood, etc. firsthand. We're planning on just renting a U-Haul truck and pulling the car behind. Has anyone done this, and if so do you have any advice, warnings, etc. for us?

I'm really very excited about the move, and surprisingly not at all anxiety-filled. I also don't know what I'm doing. Seriously. No clue. So any and all advice is welcome.


Monday, April 04, 2005

Playtime's Over

As CM mentioned in comments, I'm busy.

March was a time of self-indulgent thoughts and flitting back and forth between the coasts. There was still two months before graduation, and three before the wedding. No problem.

April, on the other hand, is a time of putting the head down and getting it done. There's one month until graduation, and two before the wedding. These are scarier numbers.

Aside from normal classwork, I still have that term paper to write, plus still two finals from last semester. One of these (Physics) will be taken on Thursday, and then I start preparing for the big Dante mess. Then, of course, the finals for this semester, the last of which will actually be taken the morning of my graduation. Thanks, CU!

In wedding news, I've gotten my shoes (which I love!), we've gotten the rings, and we've booked the caterer, the cakemaker, a hair and makeup person, the photographer, the DJ for the reception, a classical guitarist for the ceremony and I'm working on finding a (completely secular) officiant. Things regarding the wedding were so stressful there for awhile, but it's all working itself out now. I think.

I'll miss you, March. April - Do your worst.

Friday, April 01, 2005

Portland, Baby!

Dear Lewis & Clark,

You had me at hello.



P.S. The check's in the mail!

It's Over...Again...Almost

I just got home from my third and final law school admitted students' day, this time at CU.

I'm taking a couple of hours to really think things over, and then a deposit check is going in the mail. I have lots of strong feelings, and a few - but very few - ambiguous ones.

It's a big decision, though, so I'm going to respect it and really think about the pros and cons for a little while.

The next time I post - It will be done. Oh, the drama!

Monday, March 28, 2005

What Else Did You Expect?

What did you have for breakfast today?

Was it 730 calories and 47 grams of fat in the form of a sausage patty, two eggs, two American cheese slices and three strips of bacon? No? I didn't think so.

Who is going to buy this?

Saturday, March 26, 2005

Home Again, Home Again

After many delays in what seems to have been fifteen thousand airports I am finally home from my trip to Vermont.

Using the word 'nightmare' to describe my New England adventure would be unfair. Still, the words 'fun' or 'nice' would be going too far the other way. Let's just leave it at 'over'.

I can't remember what I was high on when I purchased my plane tickets, but I sure wish I had had some more when I boarded my flight at 1am Thursday morning. I managed to sleep a little bit, even with the kid next to me watching cartoons at full volume all night long. A 3 hour layover at JFK and a 3 minute plane ride later I landed in Vermont only to find that they wouldn't take my card. Hertz has very high standards that I, apparently, do not meet. So the law school actually had to fax over their credit card in order for me to proceed onto the final leg of my arduous journey: the drive from Burlington to South Royalton.

Almost delirious at this point, I get into the car and it takes me somewhere around 30 minutes to remember how to drive. I blame the coma. After finally recalling the thing about using the same foot for both the gas and the brake I was on the mean streets of Vermont. I think I saw a total of 12 others cars on the hour drive on I-89. The radio in the car did work (I had heard an ugly rumor that FM was non-attainable on this drive) but every time I turned it on either the music would start to lull me to sleep or I would become incredibly irritated with the talking or the ads. Instead I did a thing where I would alternate the windows I would roll down to get some fresh air. It was really amusing at the time.

Anyway, I'm not going to bore you with the details of the meetings and things I had. If anyone reading this is considering VLS or would just like to know more, let me know. My list of appointments: Admissions Director, Financial Aid, Tour with a 3L, Administrative Law class, Career Services, meeting with Environmental Law Center director, meeting with a professor specializing in International law.

Some random observations:

There were many comments sort of apologizing for the school, both subtle and overt. For example: We're no Georgetown. and But those positions are very competitive and pretty much only top students obtain them. There are other paths for VLS grads to get the same jobs, it just takes more work and more time.

There was a lot of talk about judicial clerkships. They seem to really push students into going for these positions.

From the 3L tour guide: The school strongly recommends taking as many classes that will directly help you on the bar exam. Wow. For me, personally, this is definitely not the approach I want to take with law school, and if I was still strongly considering VLS this would have been a big old red flag regarding the overall philosophy of the school.

Okay, so it's over. I'm glad I took the trip because I still had some overly romanticized thoughts about small town living. Those are gone now. There's no pharmacy in the town, and the nearest hospital is 20 minutes away. You have to drive 20 minutes to go to a grocery store. The amount of planning and coordinating it would take to live in South Royalton would be extraordinary, I think. Plus, there's no way you could live there without a car, and I really don't ever want to own a car again. So, that's that.

To be fair, I think that VLS has some great offerings and some unique opportunities. And I know that a lot of people really enjoy living in the town. Plus the faculty and staff were very nice.

It's good to be home.

Wednesday, March 23, 2005

Portland Trip Day 2

By 8:10 I was packed up and herded into a big shuttle bus that took all of the admitted students (plus parents, significant others, and other random guests) to the Law School.

L&C Early Spring
Lewis and Clark Law campus. Boley Library entrance is on the left.

I would estimate that about 200 students attended, and maybe half had at least one guest. So there were quite a few people to keep organized. In all, I think they did a great job keeping everyone moving along and getting us where we needed to be.

The first event of the day was a mock class. The large group was split in two, one half with Professor Newell and the other with Professor Brunet. I was in the latter group, listening to a talk about the various legal troubles of Microsoft. It was pretty interesting. The professor accepted questions from the students, and I was relieved when no one student dominated the class. I'm always a little embarassed (and, truthfully, a little annoyed) when this happens. I know that they say that if you don't know who that guy/girl is then it is you, but I swear it wasn't me. I didn't raise my hand once.

L&C Bunker Classroom
One of four bunker style classrooms at L&C.

Our next stop was a panel discussion on curriculum options, and how to decide what classes to take during 2L and 3L years. One thing I really like about Lewis and Clark is the flexibility in this area, as well as the very low number of graduation requirement hoops one has to jump through. This is a huge difference from my undergraduate academic career where I only was able to take one elective. Yes, one.

They talked about the various certificate programs they offer, their publications, and quite a bit about clinics, externships, and other practical skills-type offerings. The people on the panel seemed really down to earth - a common phenomenon at this particular law school, one that I really appreciate - and honest.

flip flops
I just thought this was funny.

Next up, the campus tour. Three students, 2 1Ls and a 2L, led us around the buildings and answered questions. Lots of questions about how to prepare for 1L, how many hours per day spent studying, etc. One of the 1Ls seemed quite adamant about handwriting notes being superior to typing notes. I've never known anyone to get defensive about their notetaking technique. Maybe people make fun of her or something.

Lunch came next. I was pleasantly surprised that there were plenty of vegan options. So they had one faculty member at each table, just ready and waiting for informal discussion. I sat at Professor Neuman's table. She spoke about really enjoying the open door policy that professors at L&C have adopted, and how this experience was in stark contrast to her own experience at law school. She was very good about including everyone at the table in the conversation and politely answering everyone's questions. There seems to be a lot of interest in Water Law. Several people at this event, and also other LS applicant students I know at CU, mentioned wanting to specialize in this area.

We had an opportunity during dessert to switch tables, so I sought out Professor Wold. I did finally find him, but he was so popular that his table was standing room only. He talked about working on endangered species projects during law school, and having the opportunity to attend an international conference (or similar, I missed the beginning of the story) during his 3L year. He was introduced as a "Legal Advisor" to avoid being dismissed as "just a law student." He also talked about the relative merit of judicial clerking, and the importance of finding ways to make yourself stand out from the crowd when it comes to job applications. He stressed getting published, mentioning that he was published during his time at Lewis & Clark, although not in a Law Review. I never thought about students publishing in other publications than Law Review or Journals from their schools, so this was very interesting.

Sky Bridge Bunkers from Bridge
Views of and from the Sky Bridge.

The remaining events were short talks by Career Services, Financial Aid, and then a student group tabling extravaganza. By the end of the Financial Aid talk I wasn't in the mood for any more information so I just wandered around a bit more and then headed back to the hotel.

Exhausted, a new friend and I took the light rail to the airport, hung out and drank coffee, then flew home, all the while talking and talking and talking about the law school application process. I feel sorry for those sitting near us on the little plane (which needed last minute repairs - eek!)

Tonight I'm off to the land of all that is cute: Vermont! I'll be back on Saturday.

L&C Flowers
A parting shot - Lewis & Clark Law flowers blooming in March.

Tuesday, March 22, 2005

Portland Trip Day 1

My trip to Portland was better than I had anticipated, which is kind of saying a lot as I had pretty high hopes going in.

The early morning flight (up at 3:30am, takeoff at 6am) was fine, and I was able to find the train into Portland after getting lost only once in the airport. I was pleased to find that the hotel was able to grant my early check-in request, and after a quick stop in my room to unpack I was off to wander around Portland.

My first stop was J's new school, Portland State University.

Portland State University - I think this is the library.

Then I just wandered around the city until it was time for the highlight of the day - meeting Shelley! We met at a fantastic Szechwan restaurant called Sungari. I am thrilled to be moving to a city with so many great restaurants including 102 Thai restaurants alone! Wow!

Anyway, hanging out with Shelley was so much fun! Meeting new people is normally an incredibly awkward experience for me. I don't chat well. But Shelley and I hads lots to talk about, like law school in general and Lewis & Clark specifically.

After lunch we headed out and ended up at the Chinese Garden.

Shelley outside of the Portland Chinese Garden

Inside the Portland Chinese Garden

Our next stop was the amazing Powell's bookstore. Being in Powell's is what I imagine being inside amazon.com would be like. It was here that I found J a Wagner action figure who currently lives on his desk at work with his Freud action figure. Sometimes they fight.

Unfortunately the afternoon eventually had to come to an end. Shelley had class, and I had to go and get ready for the law school reception. Because I had gotten up at 3:30 that morning and trekked around the city all day I was exhausted and not really looking forward to trying to chat all evening. But I had bought a new outfit that I couldn't afford specifically for this event, and flown halfway across the country, so I felt obligated.

And I'm so glad that I did. It really wasn't awkward at all, and there were standard questions to ask and answer: Are you still deciding, or are you definitely coming here? Where are you from? Where else did you apply? What kind of law do you want to study? And of course the Dean spoke briefly before passing around a wireless microphone to all of the alumni and faculty so they could talk up the school. It was all very nice - they did a good job at making us feel special and welcome.

While walking the 8 or so blocks back to my hotel I passed many little bars celebrating Saint Patrick's Day. As it wasn't too late I didn't think people would be out of control crazy yet, but I was wrong. Walking past a group of older men in suits smoking outside of a little Irish pub, I was safely a half block away before I was spotted. "There's one!" I hear from behind me, "A redhead, and you let her get away! Go get her!" Oh my. I picked it up a bit and hung out in the hotel for the rest of the night. It's an odd thing being a redhead on Saint Patrick's Day.

Later: Day 2 of the Portland Trip: Admitted Students' Events on the Lewis & Clark campus.

Photo Note: Click on any of the above photos to access my new Flickr account and see larger, clearer images.

Wednesday, March 16, 2005


Today's my Friday - at 2pm today I start an 11 day weekend.

In the plans are trips to Oregon and Vermont, lots and lots of wedding appointments, and significant progress on my Conservation Trends seminar term paper.

Tomorrow morning I fly to Portland for the Lewis & Clark Preview events. I think lots of people are going to preview events over the next few days. I can't wait to see pictures and hear about everybody's experiences at the law schools of their choosing.

I'll try to take some good pictures, although generally I am not a taking pictures kind of person. Mostly because of the hassles of getting film, developing film, etc. Also, once I had a really great little Elph camera that I won for selling a lot of telephony crap at the big telecom I used to work for and I took it to these sand dunes in Mexico and it never worked again.

Happily J won the same camera so now I just use his. Hopefully someday we'll join the rest of the civilized world and get ourselves a nice digital camera.

Tuesday, March 15, 2005

Just Stop Talking! (Updated)

Today, while returning a phone call to a professor at Lewis & Clark, it happened. I got the rambles. I just talked and talked on and on. My brain said, "Just stop talking! Now! End it! Say Goodbye!" And yet my mouth did not heed this advice.

And so, right now, somewhere in Portland, this message from yours truly is just waiting for this unsuspecting professor, its agonizing length taunting me from a thousand miles away.

Give me email anyday - Voicemail is apparently too much for me to handle.

Update: I sent the L&C professor a follow-up email with my questions - mostly because I didn't want to keep taking up his time with the phone tag. Mostly I asked about opportunities for students related to International Environmental Law, and also about some of the more unique programs L&C offers.

Anyway, I just received the most amazing email back! I was excited before but now I can't wait!

Sunday, March 13, 2005

For Janine: Tales from the Biosphere

Janine says:
I can't believe nobody has asked this yet: I want to hear Biosphere stories!
For those of you who aren't familiar with the Biosphere (and there's no real reason why you should be), here it is, in all of its glory:

I lived in a 4 bedroom house, located just to the left of this picture, with 7 other people. At 25 I was considered "old," and was never allowed to forget it! Although I had a great time during the semester, I never really "fit in" and was often desperate to get away from the very close quarters of the small village.

To that end, I decided it would be a good idea to set up camp in the middle of the desert and live out there. And so I did. To the right of the picture above there is a fairly good sized ridge and beyond that pure desert for a good ways. I set up my tent, a headlamp hanging from the ceiling for light, and it was there that I did my homework and slept. It was paradise. At night there was a big, bright moon, stars, and a velvet black sky. And perfect silence, aside from the occasional owl or coyote. Never before and never since have I felt such perfect peace.

Until one night, as I was heading out from the house toward my tent, around midnight. Pack on my back, Nalgene water bottle swinging from the side. Good sturdy boots on, with a Petzl headlamp lighting the way, I made my way along the top of the ridge to the little trail leading down into the desert, glancing down every few yards to not miss the turn. It was during one of these glances that I saw them. Two huge, green, glowing eyes calmly staring at me from just above the tips of the tall grass.

I froze. Time stood still as I thought the following thoughts, faster than I had ever thought thoughts before: "Is it a raccoon? No, too big for a raccoon. A deer? Eyes are in front of the head. Deer's eyes are on the sides of the head." Then the realization: It was a mountain lion. An honest to goodness mountain lion. Another quick series of thoughts: "Are mountain lions the ones you play dead with, or back away slowly? I'm pretty sure they are the back away slowly ones. If they come at you, are you supposed to run or fight back? I think the fight back ones are bears. Grizzly bears or black bears? Wait. That doesn't matter right now. You know, it's still looking at me. Maybe I should turn off the light."

And so, quick-witted me turns off the light so the human (me) in the situation cannot see while the feline (the mountain lion) still can. Good. The brilliant strategy continues with my reaching for my Nalgene bottle - because, yes, this is an excellent weapon for defending oneself against a giant cat.

Slowly, slowly, I backed away. No moon to help me out tonight, I'm engulfed in almost pitch dark, and now have no clear idea where the lion or the edge of the ridge are. About ten paces later I turn and walk very, very carefully in roughly the direction I came from. However, as I walked on, I become kind of agitated. I don't want to go back to the house in the village. I want to go to the peace of my tent. Am I some sort of scaredy-person (note the avoidance of the term "scaredy-cat")? No! I am indeed not some sort of scaredy person!

With defiance, I do a 180, turn the Petzl back on, and walk the slowest and most carefully I have ever walked, my eyes glues to the tops of the grasses. Finally, I make it to the turn, not spying the eyes and hoping against hope that the eyes have not spied me. I book it down the trail to the tent and hop inside, zipping that zipper as fast as it would zip.

Needless to say, I didn't sleep great that night. But I believe I would have slept worse had I tucked my tail and slinked back to the village, letting a little old mountain lion keep me from my desert.

Saturday, March 12, 2005

L'Enfant et les Sortilèges

Last night J and I went to see a one-act opera by Ravel called L'Enfant et les Sortilèges. It was by far the strangest opera I have ever witnessed. It was also the rudest opera audience ever.

For example, people brought their children and didn't immediately take them to the lobby when they started acting up. Grown people whispered to each other constantly. The young couple next to me must have had ADD or something - the guy put his head in his arms on the back of the (luckily empty) chair in front of him, and she relentlessly flipped through her program and at one point held it up in an attempt to read the ads. A-nnoy-ing.

The music was very nice. The story, though, was simply odd. It's about a young boy who apparently has psychotic tendencies as he enjoys cutting off squirrel's tails, pinning dragonflies to things, killing bats, locking up small animals, destroying property, etc.

The best part about the production was the animal costumes. There were frogs and bats and bugs - pretty interesting parts to see played at an opera.

Spoiler Alert: In the end the little boy learns his lesson. The End.

Thursday, March 10, 2005

International and International Environmental Law

Yesterday I attended a talk at CU Law on "Careers & Prospects in International and International Envronmental Law."

The first speaker was Vail T. Thorne, Senior Environmental Health & Safety Counsel for Coca-Cola. Luckily the person who was in charge of refreshments purchased Coke products. He not only used an empty bottle from the beverages table throughout his entire lecture, but he also commented three or four times how glad he was that they "bought his product." It was a little awkward.

He spoke some about Coca-Cola products, and stressed that they were not an "American company" but rather an "American icon." His job is all about making sure that Coke complies with environmental laws, regulations, etc. at all of their plant sites - of which there are about 1000 worldwide. I was pretty surprised how evenly distributed the plants were, globally, with about 160 in North America. I wonder how many of those are in the US.

A quick Google search helps me find out that Coca-Cola claims to employ 9,800 people in the US. The same search also reveals that many, many people seem to hate the company.

The second speaker was William L. Thomas of Pillsbury Winthrop, LLP. I wish he had had more time, as he was a very entertaining, informative speaker. He spoke generally about International, and International Environmental, Law and what it takes to practice in these fields. Specifically he stressed that it was important to want to continue learning, and these areas were not for those who wanted to simply "put the kids in college and be done."

Two books he strongly recommended were Something New Under the Sun: An Environmental History of the Twentieth-Century World by J.R. McNeill and Collapse: How Societies Choose to Fail or Succeed by Jared Diamond.

During the Question and Answer period a student asked about the importance of taking business law classes during law school if you wanted to end up doing public work (or something similar, I couldn't really hear) and Mr. Thomas commented that it is important to create a good foundation while in school, mentioning Corporate Law and Tax Law specifically.

All in all it was a good presentation and I'm glad I attended. CU does a good job putting these talks together.

Tuesday, March 08, 2005

For SG: Summer Plans

Sui Generis asks:
Are you planning to do anything crazy before law school starts, to celebrate the end of your pre-law life?
I don't think I need any big last hurrah or anything before law school starts. I'm incredibly ready for it to start, actually. However, there are big plans in the works for this summer: Wedding, honeymoon, big cross country move (Probably! No official commitments until April 1! Unofficially, that's just big talk. We all know where I'm going.)

I'm so excited for all of these things to happen, and yet day after day it's just more of the same. I thought February would never end! I have high hopes for March, though, with its spring break, and trips to Portland (next week) and Vermont (the week after).

So, no, no bungee jumping or sky diving or other craziness for me. I'm curious if other people are planning big "Goodbye pre-law existence!" extravaganzas, though.

Monday, March 07, 2005

Life of HSN

A new-ish addition to my blogroll that makes me laugh out loud: Life of HSN

A recent post has the best use of the phrase "Throw some ketchup on that bitch" I have read in quite some time.

Thanks, HSN, that's some funny shit.

For E. McPan: Regarding The Future Mr. WhyLaw

E. McPan asks:
how did you meet the future Mr. Why Law and when did you know he was The One?
Soon-to-be Mr. Why Law and I met about 5 and a half years ago, through a mutual friend. Our first conversation ever was about license plates. Seriously.

I knew right away that J was a great guy, but I didn't think I would ever have a chance. He was out of my league, for sure. :) I got lucky, I guess! J is the sweetest, smartest, most caring, funniest, and sexiest guy. He is also extremely patient - I suppose he would have to be, to put up with me!

He's been so great through the whole LS application process. I swear he must have listened to hundreds of hours of LSAT talk. Then application talk. Then mail talk! He was also the exclusive proofreader of my personal statements. Now he's going to let me drag him halfway across the country and change schools so I can attend my preferred LS. He's amazing, and I am extremely lucky.

Update: More about license plates: In Colorado there are these license plates that say PIONEERS and have a picture of a covered wagon. Well, the aforementioned "mutual friend" and I had been coming up with ideas about what these special license plates could possibly be about all day. We were still discussing it while hanging out at this little neighborhood bar.

J was supposed to meet up with us for a drink. Mutual Friend was dying for me to meet him, as she had a huge crush on him. So, he arrives and sits down and before he even has a chance to say hello, I ask him, "So, do you know what's up with those pioneer license plates?" He didn't.

A short five years later, we're engaged!

Sunday, March 06, 2005

Law School Visits

Preview time is here! Some great, informative posts:

Law School Chick visits Albany.

Chicken Magazine spends two days at Columbia, and another at NYU.

Also, be sure to check over at Aspiring Lawyer's as he promises some new reviews and pics soon.

Saturday, March 05, 2005

Wedding Blogging

I got my wedding dress today. It's freaking beautiful.

I can't post pics because J reads here sometimes, but I will post wedding pics for sure. My mom found a really great artsy photographer so we should end up with some really fun shots. I requested a mix of color and black & white, candid and posed.

Financial Aid Package

I received my first financial aid package in the mail yesterday. It was from Lewis & Clark, and the letter was dated March 1st. I love when "sometime in March" means "March 3" and not "March 29." Anyway, it's a good package, and pretty much what I expected.

I'm really pleased with the scholarship amount - it's going to make everything a lot easier, both during school and after graduation. Plus, you know, the love factor. You gotta heart the love.

It's going to be weird sitting on financial aid stuff. I usually like to have a one-day turnaround on forms like this. But I've decided not to move on anything until after all of my admitted students' events. It's only fair.

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