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seeking advice

November 30, 2006 3 comments

OK, kiddos, I rarely ask for advice here, but I’m really stumped right now.

I am in need of a good pair of winter boots. I have these, which I bought to take with me on ski trips, but they are pretty much worthless. The sole is too stiff, so it doesn’t flex when I walk, which means I pretty much don’t walk in them, I stomp. Also, every time I take a step, my heel comes up out of the shoe and my ankle presses against the front of the hi-top (which I have to lace super-tight so my foot doesn’t come OUT of the shoe), leaving me at the end of it all with a sore ankle and sore legs and knees from walking with an unfamiliar motion.

So, OK. Those boots are crap. But I need boots! I’ve been wearing my good knee-high leather boots, with the low heel and the neoprene-like lining instead, but they’re getting ruined from the weather. I’d like to keep them for nice, since they’re “nice” boots, and not “inclement weather” boots.

What I’m seeking, then, are recommendations. I want something that’s not leather, at least not entirely leather, or that, if it is leather, is designed to take a beating from the elements. I want something relatively light so I don’t feel like I’m wearing cinder blocks on my feet, and I want something that isn’t too bulky to go under my jeans or pants.

I want a lot, I think.

I’ve considered traditional Bean boots, with the GoreTex for warmth and waterproofness, but they are spendy and, since I can’t try them on, I worry about their fit on my feet. This, after all, is how I got stuck with the other boots. So, if you have Bean boots, can you endorse the fit? The lightness on your feet? The flex of the sole, enabling you to walk like a human being and not stomp around like a Yeti?

Alternatively, recommend other winter boots you love, that are warm, dry-feet-promoting, and not so bulky as to, again, cause the Yeti Walk.

Any and all comments are welcomed and appreciated!

Categories: requests

All Request Weekend: The End of the Road

October 3, 2006 3 comments

C’s last question was whether my professors know I blog. The answer is short: I don’t know. No idea. And I don’t really want to know. I’ve said before that I’m not really anonymous, just “googlenonymous,” so it’s entirely possible that some of my profs know I blog. Of course, they’d also have to know who I am in real life, and I think I fly under the radar. Maybe?

Andrea also asked a question about food, and it was so hard I left it for last, and now I don’t think I can answer it. Because it would make me too hungry. I mean, I did eat dinner already, but it would still make me too hungry. And it would make me sad, because Andrea wanted me to list the three meals I would eat every day for the rest of my life, if I couldn’t eat any other meals but those three, and I love food too much to even contemplate being gustatorily restricted like that. I think I’ll cop out, then, by saying that for breakfast, I’d eat eggs of some variety with some variety of potato and a bread of some kind. For lunch, I’d have some lean protein and some green leafy vegetables. And for dinner, I’d have steak. If I could eat steak every night without dying young of a heart attack. And with the steak, a starch and a vegetable and a dessert. Or fruit. And maybe some red wine. Just one glass.

And that’s the end of the All Request Weekend. Until the next one!

Categories: food, requests

All Request Weekend: what are trees for but printing my resume?

October 2, 2006 Comments off

C also asked about how my job search is going. (C had LOTS of questions in this All Request Weekend thing, but that’s OK, because the four questions C asked are all good ones.)

Some of you may have guessed that the very reason I asked for requests was because I could not (or would not) blog about my job search. Those of you who guessed that way are very smart because, indeed, I have MANY things I could be writing about in relation to my job search, but I am unwilling to actually write–and post–them.

But I will say a few things, generic things, about OCI and job searching.

First, one of the most important things I did was spend some time on my resume and get some good feedback. I ended up getting great feedback first from Mr. Angst and later from a great Career Services advisor. If you don’t have a spouse or a great Career Services advisor, find someone else–a professor, maybe, or someone you trust who isn’t a law student. Law students don’t have enough distance to give each other good advice.

Second, another important thing I did was prepare for interviews. Which isn’t to say I necessarily did oodles of research before my interviews. Instead, I did whatever I needed to on a given day to be ready to, essentially, schmooze for 20 to 30 minutes. And I attribute whatever success I had from OCI to this, because my ability to talk comfortably to any number of people about any number of things apparently went over well. Interviewing well means people will want to think about working with you. And this is a good thing, if you’re talking to that person because you want a job with them.

Finally, neither of the above things means anything in the grand scheme of things. Because in large part, I believe law firms (who are the only employers I have experience with) are looking for certain metrics and if they don’t see them in your transcript, having a well-prepared resume and being a good interviewee really won’t matter. And that, frankly, sucks. Because law students, in general, have all worked hard to get where they are and being cut off from showing their worth on the basis of some numbers/letters is really stupid. I wish there were solutions to that, too, and there may be, but I am not smart enough to come up with them.

And that’s all I’m going to say about OCI. I did not have a bad OCI experience, and I feel very lucky to be in the position I am right now. I know a lot of my friends are still interviewing and I am not, and I feel lucky in that respect, too–interviewing takes a lot of time and energy. By the same token, I do wonder how much of my current situation is related to my unwillingness to have too many choices and therefore cutting many opportunities off early so I wouldn’t have to possibly have them as options.

Categories: 2L: job search, requests

hanging on by a thread, knowing it has to be worth it

October 1, 2006 Comments off

And it’s another All Request Weekend post.

C asks, “How do you manage with having (what I imagine to be because it is for my husband and I) such a different schedule from your husband’s? Do you try to treat law school like a job so you’re around when he’s home?”

So, for starters, Mr. Angst is also in school, which has it’s plusses and its minuses. The plusses are that both of us are more or less on the same academic calendar, at least in the fall, and so we tend to be very considerate of one another when things get busy or stressful. Also, because his classes are at night and mine are during the day, we can pretty much work it so the dog is only alone for about six hours a day, total. (That’s THIS semester’s schedule. No clue how next semester is going to work.)

The minuses are that he is in class at night, which means I don’t see him three nights a week. Other minuses include that he is on quarters, so the spring gets really funky when he’s got exams during my spring break, etc. The last big minus is that neither of us is working more than a few hours a week, so we are broke.

I had always intended to treat law school like a job–the 8-to-5 thing–and have more or less been able to do that. More or less. This year it’s more difficult. I am actually on campus from about 9:30 to 4 three days a week, but all of that time is packed full, so I don’t necessarily get a lot done in terms of reading, paper writing, etc. I have to rush around to the library to pick up printouts, check out books, do source-and-cite assignments, all within about a one hour window each day that I’m on campus. So that sort of sucks about this semester. And it’s basically that way because I’m just really oversubscribed with stuff. Thankfully, I’m done with my interviewing (but that’s another post), so the end of my week has really opened up since I don’t have callbacks to schedule. Of course, I do have hours to do for my judge, so it’s not like I have two free days a week or anything.

That’s a lot of detail to answer a pretty simple question, so I guess the pretty simple answer is that we manage the best we can. This semester–and I think year–are going to be much harder than last year. Mr. Angst’s classes are getting more difficult as he nears the end of his degree program, my schedule as a 2L is completely insane, and–oh, yes–we got a dog this summer. All of those things at once means we are stretched really thin. So we’re just trying to hold on and get through it, and not lose sight of the light at the end of the tunnel. Life has its ups and downs lately, more so than ever before, I think. But we’re coping.

Categories: 2L, requests

All Request Week: "Law School Rocks Because…"

September 30, 2006 Comments off

What’s my favorite part about law school?

There are two answers to this question: the “right” answer and the “real” answer. I’ll start with the “right” answer.

My favorite thing about law school is the intellectual process. It’s a different kind of process, and it’s one I really enjoy. It’s a process that encourages you to dig into the ambiguities, into the nuances, and really dig around. It’s not so much about finding the right answer as it is about exploring the possibilities. I like that. And, as a law student, you can start doing that pretty much right away, as soon as you’ve figured out how to “think like a lawyer.”

I heard someone say recently that the great thing about teaching in law school is that, once the students have gotten through the first year and have started thinking like lawyers, they are less “students” and more “junior colleagues.” I think there’s a lot of truth in that, and it’s really cool. I can participate just as fully in a legal conversation as my professor. I might not have read as much as she has, but I can analyze the legal issues and contribute my ideas just as successfully as she can. It’s empowering, actually.

So that’s the “right” answer for my favorite thing about law school: it’s an intellectually rigorous process that encourages you to swim in the ambiguities and recognizes that you can contribute almost immediately.

The “real” answer? Law school is about four hundred million times better than work, and I go to school with some really cool people. I am also lucky to be in school in a really beautiful campus in a really vibrant city. Because, face it, all that stuff about intellectual rigor pretty much becomes worthless if you can’t enjoy yourself because you hate your classmates or feel opressed by your physical surroundings.

That was fun! Look for more request answers coming up soon!

Categories: 2L, requests

boo

September 30, 2006 Comments off

Waaaa! I just spent thirty minutes composing a really good answer to one of the questions someone asked me. And it DISAPPEARED. Poof! Gone! (I did spill coffee on myself and I may have pushed a button, but I can’t figure out what button I might have pushed. And it went away.)

Boo. I’m sad now. It was a fun entry to write, and now I don’t have time to recompose it. Boo. Boo, boo, boo.

I guess I’ll try again later. Boo.

Categories: requests

i'll ask you ONE MORE TIME

September 29, 2006 4 comments

Apparently no one caught on to my ALL REQUEST WEEK thing I posted earlier this week. And now? THE WEEK IS OVER, BITCHES. No request-answering for YOU. Hah! (That’ll show you!)

Punchy, aren’t I? Maybe it’s because this week wasn’t really any better than last week, and I’ve been insanely busy and I don’t know what I’m doing with half the things I have to do, and I still don’t know where I’ll be working next summer, AND I’M HUNGRY.

All that being said, I am starting to sort of settle into the semester and I am feeling competent again. Not terribly competent, of course, but much more so than I was feeling last week–and for that matter, Monday. I’m getting back into the swing of things–but it’s not a good sign that it’s taken me four weeks of class to get there.

Since that’s about all I can come up with today, I’ve decided to extend my ALL REQUEST WEEK into an ALL REQUEST WEEKEND! That’s right–ask your burning questions–serious, funny, even rhetorical, and I’ll attempt to answer them. Don’t bother worrying if I’ve written about it before, either. If you don’t know, chances are no one else does, either, and who’s going to take the time to dig through the archives to find out, right?

Categories: 2L, just me, requests

i know, i know, it's the easy way out

September 26, 2006 Comments off

I got nothin’.

I’d like to write something, I really would. It would help keep my page formatting from freaking out (stupid CSS), and it might actually be cathartic or enjoyable. But I don’t have anything to write about.

Or, rather, I have things I could write about but I’m not going to write about them. Despite my careful omission of Googleable details around here, I’m not stupid enough to think that I’m at all anoymous. So the things I’d write about are off the table. Ah well. I’m sure I’d drive off all of my readers if I were to wallow in all that self-indulgence.

So I guess I’ll do the lame thing–though I haven’t done it in a while–and make this a Milbarge-style All Request Week. Any questions you’re DYING to have me answer? Post ‘em in the comments and I’ll tackle them this week.

Categories: requests

Orientation? How about Indoctrination?

June 30, 2005 4 comments

WhyLaw asks about my upcoming ten days of Orientation.

Apparently I forgot to post about this—it might have been because I received it right before the four hour drive from hell—but I finally received my Orientation packet. And this is what I learned:

Orientation starts on a Friday but all we have to do on Friday is register at Law School, letting them know we’re in town. This is, apparently, MANDATORY. Even though no other mandatory events will occur until Monday, we HAVE to be there Friday. (This is fine by me, but I could see problems for someone else.) If one doesn’t show up on Friday to register/check-in/pick up one’s stuff, one forfeits one’s seat. Ouch! Friday we also take pictures for things—student ID cards, and maybe our facebook.

Saturday and Sunday are light and fun. (They’re trying to fool us into relaxing before the week starts.) We can participate in some community service activities and a kickball tournament! Oh, and there’s a breakfast with a panel called “Living with a Law Student.” I think Mr. Angst and I will go to that one. None of these events are mandatory, by the way.

So far it sounds kind of like camp, right? Hah. Monday morning, we report in for the official Welcome and…class. That’s right, we’ll be meeting all week with our Legal Writing sections. Sometime next month, we’ll be getting a reading assignment (and we’ll have to go BUY THE BOOK); during Orientation week, we’ll be assigned further reading. The sense I get is that there will be actual WRITING about this assignment, and certainly discussion of it. And lots of meeting with our section.

That week will be interspersed with other events—lunches, dinners with faculty, a mandatory reception with some law firm types, Bar Review, and even a baseball game. Those events, though, are a smokescreen. Because that whole thing about Orientation being kind of like camp? Yeah, not so much. Orientation being a lot like SCHOOL? Yeah, that sounds about right.

(Of course I am totally excited. Really!)

Categories: 0L, requests

things I'll miss when I don't have an income

June 29, 2005 3 comments

Stag asks what I’ll miss while on a student budget.

Um, so, I’m pretty cheap. And I’m one of those people who, in the grocery store, looks at the per-unit price that’s printed on the price tags on the shelves. And I rarely splurge on stuff for myself.

So realistically, there won’t be much I’ll miss. I’ll miss being able to go out to a nice dinner every couple of weeks—or going out to a nice dinner and being able to get the nice bottle of wine—but that’s a minor thing. I’ll miss being able to buy the clothes I need and afford them (I suspect that I’ll spend more on clothes before interview season than I do NOW, which is frightening). I’ll miss…um, yeah, those are probably the main things.

Because, honestly, I don’t spend a lot of money. I color my own hair. I have it cut rarely (once every six months or so). I don’t get facials and I have a friend who works a salon who does my eyebrows for cheap. I shop at Target and Ross and Payless. When I can’t find what I need there, I go to Steinmart. I buy the grocery store brand if I can and, if I can’t, I get the next cheapest option.

I’m cheap, OK? It’s actually something I’ve started to see as a sort of flaw—this reluctance to spend money on things I can afford because they seem sort of unnecessary. Things like nice dress shoes and a brake job for my car. (Yes, the latter is something I’ve waited to have done because I have been too cheap to spend the $70.)

So I think what I’ll miss being on the law school budget is, perhaps, the progress I have made towards doing nice things for myself. In the last year, I’ve gotten better about buying myself nice clothes or shoes and getting a more expensive haircut. I’ve found the joy in buying figs at $9/lb. when they’re available, just because I love them so much. And I won’t be able to make those splurges as much any more. I think I’ll miss knowing that I CAN splurge (even if I almost never do).

Categories: 0L, requests
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