Saturday, September 30, 2006
For a decent list of Woody films Ana suggests (in the following order):
1. Crimes and Misdemeanors
2. Interiors (Yeah, I know everyone hated it, but I loved it.)
3. Annie Hall
4. Stardust Memories
Thursday, September 28, 2006
Hey, so [guy friend is seeing] said they have a graduate student mixer at some bar tomorrow night at 9. He and I are going to go, as are some of his MD/PhD friends. Presumably there will be scads of doctors-to-be there. You should come. If you don't agree, I might drag you, hehehe.
Oh, I see where this is going. You’re going to find me a little med student, and then we can go out on ‘couple dates’ and be all cutesy. Next thing you know, you and I will have matching handbags and I’ll start drinking white wine. We’ll sit around talking about what a drag it is that our guys want to look at everything from a purely organic standpoint and think we’re so smart with our commentary on literature and philosophy. Suddenly I’ll be all happy and stuff and find a new a joy in shopping and things like that.
I suppose I could go – but maybe we should find me someone who wants to specialize in psychiatry since I’m obviously nuts.
HA i love it!! if you ever find a new joy in shopping, i promise i will smack you. hard. assuming you are absolutely nuts, i am aiding/abetting the cause bc i brought you breakfast of champions!
That's right ladies and gentlemen. I just got bribed into going to a med school mixer in exchange for a Vonnegut book. My friend knows her audience and is sneaky!
Tuesday, September 26, 2006
Laid in bed and pondered whether or not I wanted to get up or just sleep in until right before class. The night before I planned to get up early and swing by the career center. My plan of attack was to go to class in a suit and drop my resume off for a firm that was interviewing today.
Sleep or get up and put on suit? Putting on a suit did not sound very appealing. I’d be walking around all day feeling uncomfortable for the slim chance that the firm might interview me. Plus, what were the odds that my suit still fit? And wearing a suit meant doing my make-up and styling my hair. Phooey.
If you don’t try, Ana, then you’ve got no shot at all.
Got out of bed and began to put suit on.
What’s this? Not only did the suit fit, but the pants were noticeably looser in the back thigh area.
I came to school and dropped my resume off. A friend of mine was in the commons and barely recognized me.
“Wow, you look good,” she said. “Wow, you look really good. I love your new haircut. I’m tempted to take you with me next time I get mine done so that the person can just copy it.”
“Hey Ana!” someone called out. “Looking good!”
I have to sit around all day in case I ‘get the call’. My hopes are not high. When I gave my resume to the career counselor I noticed a stack of about 20 resumes from other kids who had the same bright idea.
However, this is the best day I’ve had in a long time…and all because of my discovery that my suit was looser than usual. Every time I walk past a mirror or a window I’m just like, “Whoo! Hoo!”
“I love your pants!” a girl told me after class today.
This is awesome. The outfit looks good. The hair looks good. I think I might wear a suit tomorrow just for the ego boost.
Thursday, September 21, 2006
I'm not participating in OCI. You didn't interview with me, and my resume isn't in your pile.
Wednesday, September 20, 2006
BABYSIS: He wouldn't know we were weird if you didn't keep mentioning it to him.
ME: You do realize that you just told him a twenty minute story about alpacas, right?
"You mean Thanksgiving?" I asked.
No, apparently a ton of law schools get a week off sometime in the fall just like spring break.
My biggest beef is the lack of reading days. For the Fall semester, classes end on Dec. 1st and exams start on Dec. 5th. The reason we have such a long space of time between the two is because 12/1 is a Friday so we get a weekend. For the Spring class end on April 30th (a Monday!) and exams start on May 2nd. One day to read. Excuse me while I twirl my finger in the air.
Who knows what the theory is behind this. Maybe it costs less; maybe someone assumes that if you stay caught up during the semester you don't need time to review for the FIVE exams you're taking. I have no idea, but I will say this: I think it stinks.
Tuesday, September 19, 2006
BostonJohn: and law review can blow me
BostonJohn: so much work, so little pay off
BostonJohn: seriously, I've got 400 pages of shit I would rather wipe my ass with in front of me
BostonJohn: reading to see if any of it sparks my attention, so I can research that specific part and write about it
BostonJohn: but, the good news is
BostonJohn: I got a job offer with [mega-firm] in NYC
BostonJohn: sign my paycheck for BigLaw
BostonJohn: haha, I'm knee deep in it
Sunday, September 17, 2006
|You Should Weigh 171|
If you weigh less than this, you either have a fast metabolism or are about to gain weight.
If you weigh more than this, you may be losing a few pounds soon!
I'm thinking maybe they missed a few key questions like "how tall are you?" and "do you eat three meals a day?" I said I eat dessert after every meal, but I often eat dessert in leiu of a meal.
|You Are 79% Passionate, 21% Compassionate|
You are very passionate, especially when it comes to love.
In fact, it's sometimes difficult for you to tell between love and lust.
You jump in head first, and figure things out later... usually when it's all over!
I'm actually impressed that I managed to get 21% on this one.
|American Cities That Best Fit You:|
|60% Washington, DC|
|50% Los Angeles|
|50% New York City|
Most entertaining part, the quiz asked me which area I liked the best: South, Northeast, Midwest, or West, and I said West. Do these cities look West to you? I also specified Sunny and Mild weather, no big winters. Uh, NYC, Chicago, DC, & Boston? Are you kidding me?
Wednesday, September 13, 2006
Downside: Yesterday I went through the drive-thru and ordered the two-taco meal from Cabana. When I got home, there was only one taco in the bag.
Upside: That’s 300 and something less calories I ate yesterday.
Downside: Saturday I locked myself out of my house – without my purse or cell phone. Walked to the nearby park, got a nice stranger to let me borrow their phone. Frantically called a friend and left a voice mail. Next called information and found my landlord. Landlord called me a locksmith company.
Upside: Unbeknownst to me, my friend, whose mother works for my landlord, got the message and her parents drove down immediately to let me in the house.
Downside: Through some sort of mistake, my landlord didn’t get the message and when the locksmith showed up an hour later, I had to pay them $60 for travel time.
Upside: I still got in my house faster and paid less than I otherwise would have if the locksmith needed to unlock my door.
Downside: My football team lost on Saturday.
Upside: I will not be freaking out every Saturday until January hoping that my team doesn’t lose.
Downside: After one year of law school and several thousand dollars, I am uncertain that I will be happy with the conventional legal route.
Upside: I did not pay for three years of school and then practice for several years before I figured this out. I still have time to strategize and make this work.
Downside: I have zero love interests right now and about zero interest in finding a love interest.
Upside: I don’t have to worry about accidentally becoming pregnant anytime soon.
Downside: I got a gas bill for over $100 on Saturday. I checked the meter and sent the company an email telling them ‘I think you read it wrong.’
Upside: Twenty-four hours later they sent back a response with the three glorious words, ‘You were right.’
Downside: My A/C broke and I spent 24 hours in 98 degree heat. The A/C guy came out and it looked like the air filter had not been changed in about three years. The unit was covered in gunk.
Upside: I have been trying to find the air filter since I moved in a year ago. Since the cleaning, it blows out air like never before. I can finally cool my house to a temperature below 80 degrees and I might actually have an electric bill less than $200 now that the thing the unit is operating efficiently.
Downside: I forgot to turn my phone on after class yesterday and missed calls.
Upside: My friend left a message that I can now listen to over and over again which says: “I’m sitting here doing citation checks and I thought of you because let me tell you, this piece I’m reading sucks. This journal could really use your writing skills.”
Tuesday, September 12, 2006
Then the grades came in. I scored just above average. I was mildly devastated. My ranking fell. I was bumped out of the percentage eligible for on-campus interviewing. I missed being able to take part in the Law Review’s write-on competition by .02 of a point in my GPA. I knew I wasn’t dumb, but I was still deflated. What was I doing wrong?
When I left for Paris this summer I was still in my funk. I enjoyed my summer classes, but I didn’t put any effort into them. I mean, why bother? I was going to do badly anyway. Why waste a good time in Paris studying? Why not help out the kids who really cared as far as the curve was concerned? In my first final in Paris I wrote four pages in my bluebook, not because I didn’t know the material despite my best efforts, but because I had lost all confidence and completely froze. Two of those pages consisted of a personal apology to my professor. I wrote that I attended his class regularly, enjoyed it greatly, and to please not consider my performance to be indicative of his teaching ability.
This semester has been a pretty half-hearted experience thus far. I have lapsed into a state of apathy. Even my writing is boring. I start most of my sentences with ‘I’ and I don’t even bother to avoid the passive tense. The interviewing panel from the BigLaw firms didn’t exactly spur me on either.
So I met with my prof who had pulled my exam earlier and looked it over. (I got a flat B on the exam – solidly average.)
“Oh Ana,” she sighed as I sat down. “First off, let me tell you that you are very intelligent.”
Uh, okay, sure, whatever.
“You did really well on the multiple choice section,” she continued, “one of the better scores.”
“You argued the issues very effectively. I’m convinced that you understand the material and know it well.”
Too bad half the class apparently did a better job.
She looked over the exam. “And your writing,” she added, “your writing is just…really great.”
Lot of good it did me.
“The only thing separating you from the people who got the A,” she said skipping over B+ and A-, “Ana, you didn’t write down the rule on your issues.”
Are you kidding me? I didn’t write down the rule! On an essay exam, the answer is made up of four parts: the issue, the rule, and the arguments for and against. Some people miss the issue. Most people don’t go into enough depth on the argument. The rule is the definition, the gimme. Everyone knows the rules by exam time. It’s like the 400 points you get just for filling in the bubbles of your name on the SAT scan-tron. The rule also comprises about 25% of the points on an issue.
I looked over the prof’s grading sheet. She’d outlined each of the issues and assigned them a point value. For additional ideas and issues, she’d allotted five points…I’d received ten.
I was oddly relieved. I wasn’t stupid. I did know the material better than most. I was just a complete flake.
“Ohhh,” I moaned. “There’s three-tenths of a point separating me from the top of the class.”
“You can probably make that up by next semester,” she said.
“But this was the semester that counted!” I said as I beat my head on her desk. “Excuse me,” I said. “I’m going through a small crisis of faith right now, and questioning whether or not I should even practice law.”
“Ana,” she said. “You’ll be fine. You’ll have a great GPA by the time you graduate. You’ll find a job, and trust me, you know your stuff. I predict that headhunters will start calling you after only a year of practice.”
Didn’t write the rule…that’s hilarious. What is it with me and rules?
Monday, September 11, 2006
Sunday, September 10, 2006
On the one hand, you’re excited that about a 100 new people will stop by and visit your blog. Out of that 100, maybe 3-5 will find your musings entertaining and continue to read the blog as a means of procrastination. The other 95-97 will read the piece, wonder 'Who is the self-absorbed jerk writing this drivel?' and move on.
But to those 3-5 of you, please accept my profound thanks – and let me say that I do this for you.
…In a conversation with my mother the other day…
MOM: I’m sending you some books on writing. I really think you could be good at it.
ME: Leave it to me to love a vocation where most people don't receive praise or financial stability until after they’re dead.
Saturday, September 09, 2006
Tuesday, September 05, 2006
[If any of you guys around campus are using the rollies because of some kind of medical condition, I profoundly apologize.]
Rolling backpacks! Really!
Take a look around...
Prof: Well you just need to the tell the judge that class comes first. He’s a judge and he will think that works come first, but he’s wrong. You just have to tell him. This will be good practice for you.
Today I attended an interviewing skills panel that consisted of lawyers from around the state. I thought the piece might be helpful.
The third panelist from the mid-size firm started, “Well, first off, for reasons unknown to you that I won’t go into here, we go through the resumes and divide them to the stacks. First we take out everyone below the top 20% and then from that group we start to look at the applicants.”
Um, okay – any time the career center would like to put on a presentation that applies to the overwhelming majority of the school’s students, that would be awesome. No really. We’d love you. Because well, the top 20% are probably going to be able to find a job through this on-campus interviewing thing. The rest of us have no idea what to do and there hasn’t been a single brown bag geared towards ‘our kind’. I thought this was going to be a ‘general’ interviewing techniques presentation.
No-no, my friends. This was interviewing skills for the big-law from hell firms. I stayed – partially in case anything was said that I might be able to use, partially for entertainment, and partially because I’m just sadistic.
The first panelist told a story of interviewing a woman with fantastic social skills and amazing grades. In her own words the panelist described the interviewee as ‘brilliant’.
“Unfortunately,” she said, “she wore her hair up in a clip and with the hair flopped over the clip. I mean, why couldn’t she just ‘do’ her hair.”
GASP! Um, yeah. God forbid this girl might have an amazing personality and the mental dexterity to be an attorney, but flop her hair! Quite a few people in this city ‘do’ their hair in that fashion and about the only setting I can think of where it might look odd is at a black-tie wedding. ...well except at large firm interviews, apparently. Now I know.
Ok, here’s the deal. I come from a decent background and both of my parents have gone to graduate school. My point is, I didn't grow up in an environment that wasn't exposed to the professional world. However, my parents always taught me to look at others in relation to their words and actions. I was never supposed to judge a person on physical appearance. My mother knows more about social etiquette than any other person I’ve ever met and is a Phi Beta Kappa. She also doesn’t worry about whether or not her socks match.
As a child, I can remember her making a point of taking me to the department store when she wasn't dressed nice or in make-up so I could see how the store attendants treated her. I always found the experience embarrassing, but the reason my mother did this was to show that you should never judge a book by its cover.
"Be nice to everyone," she told me, "because you never know who they are...and frankly, it shouldn't matter anyway."
“Also,” another panelist told us, “we have quite a few people at our firm with tattoos and piercings. However, we’ve never extended a second interview to someone who’s shown either at their first interview.”
Um, thanks for making us aware of the hypocrisy up front.
Both of my siblings have art-related degrees. Both are, to borrow the term, brilliant – not just in their crafts, but also on an intellectual and cultural level. Also, both have always had an income higher than my own. Neither own a suit. My brother showed up to my high school graduation in a Black Crowes concert t-shirt and jeans. I wore flip flops and corduroy to my sister’s college graduation.
“I think a close-toed Birkenstock would have been a better choice…a flip-flop might be a bit too casual,” my mother said. This was for the nighttime honors college ceremony. For the larger day ceremony, I wore a suit and my mother made fun of me for it.
“Oh and ladies, if you’re comfortable in a pantsuit and it looks nice, you can wear one,” the first panelist added.
The second panelist jumped in, “Not if you’re in Dallas! Austin is a little more casual. If you interview in Dallas, you better wear a skirt and you better wear hose!”
What kind of sick and twisted profession have I gotten myself into where only the men get to wear the pants? Holy Sexist Throwback, Batman! I think the overriding point here is that what constitutes appropriate interview attire depends on the individual interviewer and you'll never know what that is. I suggest you do whatever works for you and that way, you have a better shot of ending up at a firm well-suited to your own personality - that is, if you still have a personality by the end of law school.
“Oh, and don’t cleanse your resume of any items that might make apparent your race, religion, or politics,” said the first panelist.
Oops, already did that – took out all of the artsy-fartsy stuff that might make me look like I had any individuality.
“We want you to be distinctive and stand out among the fifteen interviews we do that day,” she said.
Hmm, maybe you should let us come to the interview in something other than the dark suit, skirt, short hair, and pearls uniform. That might help you out.
My family has never been into appearances. We don’t buy brand name clothes and we don’t drive flashy cars. My mother always taught me that to do so was gauche. Oh, and that dark suit they keep telling us all to wear? Um, does anyone remember the email from my mother where she said that if I kept using my Thinkpad I would end up looking like Dilbert?
That’s not to say that my mother didn’t think presentation was important. When I size someone up, I look at their table manners or how they interact in different social situations. How well spoken they are. How varied their knowledge is. How they treat the guy behind the counter at the 7-11. Behavior, mannerisms, diction – those were the biggies in my parents' house.
I don’t look at someone’s hair color…and by color I mean whether it’s green or purple – which makes me wonder, why is it okay for every woman in this state to bleach their hair white blonde, but not okay for them to dye it bright red when neither are remotely close to their natural color? Coincidentally, a friend mentioned to me a few weeks ago that she planned to remove her nose ring for interviews, and I, for the first time noticed that she had one.
“Guys,” the first panelist said, “just go to Men’s Wear*house. They can find you a suit and they do alterations for free.”
Okay, my mother, though not a fan of the suit, knows that there are times when one is required. She would tell me this is one of those times. She would also say that if you’re going to get a suit, you need to get a really well-made suit. When hell freezes over would she ever suggest Men’s Wear*house.
The panelists went through a litany of other items.
...Earrings larger than stud size.
...Legs crossed at the knee instead of the ankle – apparently a no-no. (women only)
...Guys who crossed their leg where you could see leg in addition to sock. (Just showing sock was okay, by the way…as was guys crossing their legs.)
...Don’t lean forward. Don’t lean back. Sit straight up….but not too straight where you look completely erect and awkward. - What exactly does that mean? Sit at 4 degree angle?
...Make sure you really scrutinize your resume. Details are important. We’ll notice if there’s an extra space between sentences.
...How to answer jerky questions like, “Why do you think you’re good enough to work here?”or “You’re older. Do you plan on having children soon?” – Um, wouldn’t the correct response to that be to get up and leave because as desperate as you may be for a job, you’re not desperate enough to want to work at that firm?
I can wear a suit, get a cute haircut and look presentable, but some of this stuff like skirts and ankle-crossing seems downright retarded. I mean really, an extra space between your sentences? Should I bring the name of a good psychiatrist who specializes in obsessive-compulsive behavior with me to my pretend interview?
I worry about what stud earrings and crossed ankles will lead to…
“Um, Ana, uh yeah, now that you’re an associate, we thought we’d let you know that we prefer for all of employees to drive BMWs. We just think it looks unprofessional when you show up at a client’s office in a domestic car…and um, yeah, your zip code? Well, we looked it up and found out that you live in Montrose. You may or may not realize this, but uh, well how do I say this? There’s a lot of homosexuals, Hispanics, and artists in your community. Sure, we do the politically correct thing and hire a token minority around here every year or so, well not artists because they're not a recognized minority, but we’re not the minority law firm and living in that area might give our clients the wrong idea about who we are. I mean, half of the people in your zip code don’t even have health care. We'd really like it if you could move to the suburbs and live in a master planned community. Maybe get a husband and kids to go with. We don't want anyone veering from the standard normal. Not professional - might look bad to our clients. Or, you could get a loft downtown if you insist on being single. That way you'll have a huge mortgage hanging over your head which is really good for us. On the plus side, you'll only be five minutes from work and can do a quick run home in the morning to take a shower and change clothes.”
Yes - I'm completely jumping to conclusions on that last part - I'm just paranoid because at one of my first jobs out of college I had a supervisor who heavily pressured me to reorganize revamp my image one piece at a time. (Hair/dress/demeanor/outside work involvements/type of friends/etc.) Each time it was something small and I thought it was easier to just make the changes, but after about two years I wasn't even sure who I was anymore. So yeah, I'm probably a little more hyper about these types of things than other people.
All this aside, the lawyers in the panel were friendly and helpful. They tried to give an honest and sincere view of what was expected in interviews. They took time out of the office to come visit and I appreciate their input. Their panel is one more piece of evidence to throw on the pile of 'Why Ana probably wouldn't be a good fit for BigLaw'. I know it's right for some people and more power to them.
“And one final note on summer internships,” they said, “You’re always going to look good if you’re among the first to get there in the morning and the last to leave.”
Sigh. Remember the good ol' days when being well-rounded and having outside interests was considered an asset? When a friend of mine was reviewing my resume recently, she actually had me take OFF some of my volunteer work. "You have too much," she said. "Firms are going to be suspicious of someone who does that much work for free."
I love law school. I think that I might actually like practicing law as well. I know that I could be good at it. I just hope that somewhere in this city is a place where I can do so without having to listen to an office mate talk about the summer associate’s clunky shoes and dangly earrings...or in a dream world, where the office mate is talking about how much she likes the summer associate's clunky shoes and dangly earrings - in addition to the associate's brilliance.
Saturday, September 02, 2006
“Trust me,” she said when I was whining about wanting to attend a small liberal arts college. “You’ll thank me for this later.”
I’m still uncertain as to her advice, but to this day I regularly take part in watching the games. The Texas games are almost always televised. What miffs me though is that three out of my five family members went to Pac-10 schools, and I love the Pac-10. After listening to my parents trash talk USC for the last 30 years I despise USC more than I dislike OU or A&M when it comes to college football. ...so much so that I cried at the end of the Rose Bowl last year when my Horns took the Trojans down.
Unfortunately, I do not live on the West Coast. Even when the PAC-10 games are televised, they usually don’t show up on my local stations. Right now Oregon is tromping Stanford and according to ESPN, ABC is televising the game. I wish I could watch. Instead, when I turn on ABC I get OSU and Northern Illinois. Like. I. Care.
Berkeley is playing Tennesee…on ESPN and tonight SC plays Arkansas…on ESPN.