Wednesday, May 10, 2006


I knew last week was going to be hell even before it began. I had too much to do, and of course left most of it until the last minute. They decided, [they being the ICLE gods] for whatever reason, to make both of our first two CLE assignments due on the same day. I, of course, didn’t do either of them early and left both of them until last week. I did get the brilliant idea to start them while sitting in class on Monday night. Imagine my dismay when I walked into class on Monday night and found that all the tables had been removed. As if the classes are not slow torture as it is, they took away all the tables. This meant no leaning, no place to put a drink, no laptop and definitely no typing my assignment. I had to fight to stay awake, even with my back aching and my closest neighbor mere inches from my face. I wrote an interesting note on the back of my evaluation that night. [Those people are going to hate me, I actually write what I think on things every week, and my name is on it!] It made no sense to expect us to take notes and absorb anything in those conditions. I have wondered many times how people who took the live BarBri lecture in Manhattan managed to learn anything without tables or desks. Again, the lecturers were knowledgeable, and even prepared with Powerpoint slides; but without a laptop or even a flat surface, notes were out of the question.

In the middle of this, while we were all silently hoping and praying to be let out early, someone comes in and interrupts the lecture to tell us that an anonymous phone call has been received. I immediately thought of a bomb scare, only to listen further and find out that someone made an anonymous phone call and reported the facility to the fire marshal! In walked a portly man in an ill fitting uniform intent on looking important. He surveyed the situation and walked the aisles, making people who he felt were blocking the path of egress move to new locations. It would all have been very comical had I not been so uncomfortable and dying to go home.

Luckily, when I walked in on Tuesday night the tables were back and we were split between two rooms, with one room having a live lecturer and another having a closed circuit TV. I never appreciated a table so much in my life! I gleefully spent the next three hours typing out my family law homework while listening to the lecture on estate planning.

I typed my heart out. The assignments are insane. I worked on family law for three hours in class and then at least another three at home to finish it. [Yes, I was listening to the lecture as well.] A lot of it was just typing and typing and typing and [well you get the idea]. Which is completely unrealistic. Some attorneys have secretaries do all their typing, but a divorce complaint is pretty boiler plate. Sure you have to change the facts and the causes of actions to suit your client, but no practicing attorney is retyping all the “stuff” from scratch when they do them. Also, since I am not currently working in the legal field I don’t have a lot of people I can ask for advice or help. I also don’t have access to the groovy computerized forms used to calculate child support and the like. All in all, it was not a barrel of monkeys.

Wednesday was my interview. I don’t think it went well. I hope I am wrong. The guy who interviewed me was nice and seemed very down to Earth. He didn’t seem to have a lot of questions for me, in fact I gathered that he had not even read my resume before I sat down in front of him. He asked if I had a writing sample. D’oh! I mentioned in my cover letter that I would be happy to provide one if asked. I also asked the secretary who I made the appointment with if I should bring one. Apparently no means yes. I felt like an idiot. Then he asked me about cases I had worked on in the past – a year and a half ago. I was a little fuzzy on the specifics. Then he told me the salary and it was a lot less than I had expected. Perhaps he wanted to start low and negotiate. Perhaps I’m just not worth what I thought I was. All I know is that I could not move out on that salary and start my “real” life. I also know that the office seemed a congenial environment and practicing law at a decent, if not “move out of the parentals house”, salary is certainly preferable to temping. I did email two writing samples. I hope I get the chance to consider this situation more closely and don’t get rejected outright.

Thursday night I stayed up until 2:30am to finish my assignments. I am out of practice on the “all nighter” circuit. [I used to stay up all night doing work in law school, even before law school I could go out dancing until 2am, and then get up for work at 5:30am. Eeeps! Am I getting old?!] Which brings us to Friday. Friday was a blur due to my general lack of sleep. I managed to get my work done, but it was a challenge. Indeed, I intended to take a nap before the one and only show I try to watch every week, Conviction. However, my “nap” turned into an all night sleep and I slumbered pretty much from 8:30 until the next morning.

Before my sleeping beauty routine I managed to go grab dinner. I discovered this place called Surf Taco: Coastal Cuisine. Apparently I am the last to know about this little Mexican gem that is both delicious and cheap. It’s a bit of a ride to any of the beach locations, but well worth it. I had their signature dish called (go figure), a Surf Taco. It’s very simply a piece of fried cod, shredded cabbage, tomatoes and a cilantro cream sauce in a soft flour shell. Add a tasty salsa bar and some chips and you have a scrumptious [did I mention cheap?!] feast. I plan to go back before the place is overtaken by bennies shoobies tourists.

The weekend was spent cleaning and cooking. Saturday night was some family poker and Sunday I put on my chef’s hat and made some specialties by one of the Goddesses of the Food Network, Ina Garten. I made orzo with roasted vegetables. It has, as you might guess, orzo and roasted veggies, but it also has the odd [yet delicious] combo of lemon juice, olive oil, scallions, pine nuts and crumbled feta cheese. I also added some additional veggies, garlic and roasted chicken. Dessert was homemade key lime pie. I bought the ingredients for mojitos, but those got nixed as we were stuffed from dinner.

Well this has become a pretty long post, and perhaps very uninteresting for some of you, so I’ll end it here. This week promises to be almost as busy, but let’s hope there are more interesting things on the horizon.


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