Sunday, March 11, 2012

[Y]ou're a very nice tiny person and what am I saying . . . I've never taken drugs because I missed the sixties. I was an accountant.

Fairy wings. A song came up on my pandora today called Fairy Wings, and it made me think of being a kid. I remember fairy wings. I remember imaginary worlds. I remember heroes and battles won. And fairy wings.

Sort of a random way to start a post, but I promise its relevant. I know it's been a long time since I last posted on here. It has been a crazy semester. I've been trying to do seventeen million things simultaneously. It worked out ok. I'm still alive, I haven't been fired, and they haven't kicked me out of school yet, so I count it as a success. Most of my extracurricular stuff is done now, so all I have to worry about is school and work. You have no idea what a relief that is. Actually, you probably do. I've found there are few that have not experienced that level of stress. The world moves too fast sometimes.

Anyway, things are going well. I competed at the trial competition with my team, and we did ok. It was a great experience, and I learned a lot. Also, I'm a major law nerd, so I had a lot of fun. I hope to be able to do it again next year. My moot court board responsibilities have now come to an end. We did our last competition this last week, and that's a relief. So really, just school and work. That's do-able.

I accepted an internship with the NY State Department of Environmental Conservation for the summer. I think that will be a great experience. I also was offered an internship with the US Attorneys office for the fall and spring. I am really excited about that. I actually applied for that internship last year and didn't get it, so I am super excited to have the opportunity to do it this year. I think that's actually what I want to do when I graduate, so this'll be a great opportunity to see if that's really what I want to do. In any event, it'll be a great experience.

So, Fairy wings. As you can see, I've been kind of busy. Going to school full time, working two jobs, trial team practice, moot court board responsibilities, it all adds up. For a minute there, I felt like I was drowning. I wondered, what the hell am I doing here? I could be home with my family, but no, I had to move to the other side of the damn country so I could have seventeen million things to do and be miserable. Sometimes when life gets too crazy, it's easy to forget our purpose. And I did, for a minute. I just wanted to go home and play with my nieces and nephews, spend time with my parents and my brother and sisters. I felt like I was swimming upstream like salmon, who I might add, swim upstream and get eaten by bears. I don't want to get eaten by bears.

So I took a minute to think, had a conversation with God, tried to remember why I came out here in the first place. Then I remembered that I am an ideological fool, that I believe in justice and truth, that I believe there is good in this world, and it's worth fighting for. I remembered when I was a kid, and I would play pretend with my friends. There were the evil kings we had to overthrow to rescue our country. All was bleak, and then there were fairies. In my imaginary worlds, the fairies were there to remind us to be happy, to hope. They were probably my brain trying to impose some level of femininity upon me whilst I pretended to be a pirate/ninja hero. (Though I would like to note, the fairies were just as much the heroes my stories as any pirate/ninja. I'll leave the discussion on the strength of femininity for another day.) At any rate, in my stories there were always fairies to help the hero make it to the end, so the pirate/ninja could save the world.

I don't think that's so different from the real world. Metaphorically. I think there are "fairies" around us that remind us of our purpose, that give us a sprinkling of fairy dust to keep us going. You can call it 'tender mercies' or 'luck' or whatever you like, but they are there. And Thank God for that. I needed a good dose of fairy dust to get through these last few weeks. I needed a troupe of fairies to lift me up and clear my mind so I could remember my purpose.

And they did. I remembered, and accordingly, I survived. Now it is on to spring break. A good friend from College is coming out to visit, and I can't wait to see him. This is going to be a good week and it may or may not include fairies, pirates, ninjas, or bears.

Sunday, January 15, 2012

"You're supposed to be dead!" "Am I not?"

So school has begun again, as it must in the vicious cycle of academia. This semester my classes all seem to be exponentially harder than last semester. In almost all of them, I have seriously considered dropping them, thinking there was no way I could hack it in that class. Alas, I decided to go the route of masochism, and stay in all of my classes. Ultimately I decided that I should just step up to the damn plate. Maybe I'll surprise myself. I really hope so.

Anyway, my first class is federal jurisdiction. It's going to be a class about federalism (the different powers afforded to the states and the federal government and the relationship between the two) and about federal courts. That sort of thing. I think I'm going to enjoy it. It's a really small class. There are only like 15 people in that class. I think that'll be good though.

My next class is legal profession. It's a class about legal ethics. It'll be good. In order to be admitted to the bar, you have to take the MPRE which is a test about legal ethics and professional rules of responsibility. So this class will help with that. Plus, it's required, so you know, there's that.

My next class is criminal procedure: investigation. We'll be talking about things like search and seizure, interrogation, that sort of thing. It's a really big class, but I still think it'll be good. My professor is very passionate about criminal procedure, so that makes the class interesting.

My last class is legislative and statutory interpretation. This class, I fear, will be my hardest. It's going to be really interesting though. As implied by the title, it's a class that teaches different ways to read and interpret statutes. You'd think that would be a fairly straightforward endeavor, but I expect if you think that you've never read a statute. Also, we're lawyers. We need to know how to argue that a statute means the exact opposite of whatever our opponent says it means. (I hope you keep that in mind when you hear politicians squabbling about what a certain piece of legislation means. You're probably not getting the full picture from either one of them.) Anyway, I think it'll be a good class. Setting aside the cynicism, it's good to know how to read and interpret statutes. Sometimes (read almost always) they're hard to understand, so I think this class will give me the tools I need to understand legislation better, which is always good.

Anyway, those are my classes this semester. It's gonna be a crazy semester, but I think it'll be good. I'm also doing the moot court trial team. We get started on Monday. I'm pretty excited about that. I think it'll be a lot of fun, so I'll keep you posted on a the adventures I expect will be inherent with the athletic equivalent of law school. :) Hope you're all staying warm!