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WOLFPACK WINS!!! Takes out FSU, 28-24

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Oct 28, 2010 in Wolfpack Athletics

We take a break from this regularly-scheduled law school blog to take you live to Raleigh, North Carolina:

THE N.C. STATE WOLFPACK BEATS THE #16 FLORIDA STATE SEMINOLES AT HOME!!!

28-24 NC State! :D

The game was full of huge plays, including N.C. State going for the winning TD on 4th and goal with 2 minutes left in the 4th quarter, instead of just kicking a field goal to tie.

Ever heard that old saying that “[l]ife isn’t for those who punt on 4th and 1”? Same applies to scoring ;)

N.C. State, FSU and Maryland are now all tied at 1-loss apiece in the Atlantic Division.

Aaaannnddd we’re now bowl-eligible @ 6-2 with 4 games remaining! :D

Check out this ESPN post-game entry for the details, or visit the good folks over at StateFans Nation :)

Law-related entries will resume tomorrow, I’m off to celebrate! ;) Have a great night y’all!!

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5

A sneak peek at 2L Spring

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Oct 27, 2010 in The 2L Life

Good evening y’all! :)

This morning was class registration day for the 2Ls at the N.C. Central University School of Law, meaning all of us were up at the crack-o’-dawn with fingers curled over the keyboard frantically refreshing a TWEN page around 8:00am.

Different from undergrad,1 where we got our PIN numbers weeks in advance and our custom-built registration system was inaccessible until a certain day/time, the Banner registration system at NCCU is up for everyone and instead the PIN numbers get automatically posted at 8am via the Registrar’s TWEN page. So folks have realized the most efficient way to snag classes involves a bit of computer know-how:

  • Look them up in Banner in one browser window
  • Click the “Register” button (which takes you to the PIN screen)
  • Then in another browser window open the Registrar’s TWEN page
  • Hit refresh until the PIN spreadsheet link appears
  • Open the attachment within TWEN as an HTML preview
  • Use Ctrl/Cmd+F to find your Banner ID
  • Highlight and then copy your PIN
  • Alt/Cmd+Tab to go to the other browser window with Banner in it
  • Then paste the PIN in the box and click “Register”.

The whole process from start to finish takes maybe 5 seconds at most.

And people have gotten very good at it…

Last time around that included me. It’s why my Fall 2010 schedule only included 1 elective, as I tried to knock out as many required courses as possible so I could spend 3L year learning interesting stuff.

But this morning I made a fatal mistake :beatup:

After opening the PIN window and clicking the spreadsheet attachment, I accidentally clicked the “Download spreadsheet” link instead of the “Open as HTML preview” option. In the less-than-3-seconds it took me to (i) realize wtf I had done, (ii) frantically click back to the browser, and (iii) open the HTML preview instead, I had given up priceless registration time.

By 8:00:xx, three of the classes I had planned on taking were filled :cry:

So now my 2L Spring schedule is an inverse of the 2L Fall schedule: only 1 required course this time around, with a boatload of electives to go with it.

< 3 seconds == near-total schedule change :cry:

Business Associations is the required course and will be taught by Professor Ks. After my poor showing in both semesters of Contracts last year I’m a little terrified of taking another class with him, but every 3L I’ve talked to has told me he’s better than our other BA professor so I’m gonna try again ::fingers crossed::

Trial Practice I isn’t required but just about everybody takes it, given NCCU Law’s reputation in North Carolina for producing top-rate trial attorneys. I haven’t had this professor before so I have no clue how that’s going to turn out. If I’m lucky enough to make it onto one of our trial teams I’ll be using the class to prep for competition.

Scientific Evidence is taught by Professor DVLaw, which is actually the only reason I’m taking it because I hate pre-9am classes :beatup:  It goes into deeper and more-practical detail on some of the CSI-esque forensics that lawyers see in a courtroom nowadays (DNA, emails, digital photos, etc) which should be cool to learn. But the main motivator is the professor: like MDG she’s tough on the workload and grading, but you leave her classes actually knowing stuff and how to apply it.

Criminal Procedure is a prerequisite for both our Criminal Prosecution and Criminal Defense clinics that folks can take their 3rd year, so I signed up for it now instead of taking Taxation like the vast majority of 2Ls. The downside is that I’ll be stuck taking both Tax and Sales & Secured Transactions during 3L Fall — too many #s in one semester for my taste — but it should give me a leg up in snagging an ADA-ship after graduation. It’s taught by Professor CrimLaw so at the very least it should be entertaining :)

And then Appellate Advocacy I is my throwaway class. The Professor teaching it is the same guy who runs the Criminal Prosecution Clinic during 3L, and it’s a required course if for some reason I decide to try Moot Court in my 3rd year despite my total lack of current interest. Most of the 3Ls have told me taking App Ad and Trial Practice in the same semester is suicidal, so I’m fully prepared to drop it and take it next year if it gets too burdensome.

So that’s what next semester is going to look like :) I’m excited! :D

And the crazy part? I only register for classes 2 more times before becoming an attorney… :surprised:

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From the schedule-related archives:

  1. Not sure about other law schools — how do your schools handle registration? []

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2

Quitting sucks…

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Oct 26, 2010 in Randomness

Good morning y’all :)

Today is Day 5 of going without my law school staple (Diet Mountain Dew) or caffeinated beverages of any kind. For whatever reason I agreed to join Madame Prosecutor for a series of pre-class gym routines at the local YMCA… and have been getting comprehensively run into the ground (thanks to slacking off these past 4 months). Soooo I’ve been monitoring my diet more closely in addition to the exercise.

Meaning nothing but water / milk / orange juice for me on the drink front.

And it sucks :beatup:

In blog-related news, I’ve fallen back into my recent habit of lining up a week’s worth of entries that are in various stages of not-finished-ness. I’ll hopefully get them up over the next couple days. Thanks for still checking in every now and then, I appreciate y’all :*

Have a great day!

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11

(Non-)Friday Drive-by: Surveying the blawgpocalypse…

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Oct 17, 2010 in Friday Drive-by

I’m a huge fan of the other blawgers out there on the internet, and particularly enjoy them when I need to avoid doing pointless classwork ;)

Even though I don’t comment as often as I should on those folks’ entries, I still talk with several of them frequently on Facebook and Twitter — and even became “real world” friends with a couple :)

So as I stumble across blawgs I haven’t read yet, they get thrown onto the blogroll for y’all to enjoy. And since I try to read all of them regularly I update the link list with one or more tildes (“~”) if something hasn’t been updated in awhile: ~ means a blog has been inactive for at least a month, ~~ for blogs that haven’t been updated in 3+ months, and ~~~ for the ones that are pretty much totally deactivated (no post in 6+ months, or password-protected, or shut down).

But given my sporadic and lengthy disappearances over the past two months, it’s been awhile since I had a chance to catch up on the blawgosphere…

…and an awful lot of them have disappeared since then :(

About 15% of my blogroll now falls into “~~~” territory. The most high-profile is probably i don’t wear skinny jeans, a now-2L at NYU who blended his law school life experience with a truly impeccable wit.1

Together with Jansen and the Hoomster, idwsj rounded out my “Big 3” — the first law blogs I ever read, and the ones I still check almost compulsively. I saw one of his last posts speculating about the future of his blog, but I didn’t realize he had gone through with deleting it until my Top Sites screen in Safari showed a blank WordPress page :beatup:

idwsj isn’t the only one. Take a look at the September 2009 Top 10 law student blogs from Bitter Lawyer and a similar May 2010 Top 10 blog list from ClearAdmit:

And then there’s the other 40%ish of the 149 entries in the blogroll who are in the ~ and ~~ range. Some of the folks who still write regularly have also pondered throwing in the towel, or scaled back due to drama.

I don’t know what’s brought on the mass extinction, but if any of you happen to read this entry: your blawgs are among the highlights of my day, so I’d really appreciate if you didn’t disappear on me :*

Off to dinner with some of my NCCU Law colleagues, then back to study Evidence for the night. Have a great night y’all! :D

  1. To this day idwsj’s blog was/is the only law blog I’ve read where I literally LOL’d in the middle of class :beatup: []

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4

Twitch

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Oct 15, 2010 in Randomness

I’ve been blessed with good eyesight since I was a kid, and when I visited 雅雅 in Memphis the future-optometrist even determined I’m part of a relatively small number of people in the country who would be classified as a “true emmetrope.”1

After successfully making it through years of computer science and 1L year of law school without any problems, I guess I’ve been taking things for granted: between a research memo for DVLaw, a research memo for Legal Letters, and a midterm for ConLaw, this week I’ve developed this insanely annoying twitch at the outer edge of my left eye :cry:

Not sure if it’s plain ol’ eye fatigue or something serious, but I’m officially not a fan…

  1. Basically means both of my eyes are normal-shaped, compared to folks who have one or both eyes that are slightly misshapen but still see 20/20 due to the brain compensating for vision problems. []

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TDot: 1, ConLaw: 0

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Oct 14, 2010 in NotFail

Despite going to bed early, I never made it to the 8am ConLaw review :beatup:

My BlackBerry doubles as my alarm clock, and I’ve got this habit of taking it after it goes off and then resetting the alarm for 10-15 minutes later.1 The problem Wednesday morning was that I apparently grabbed the phone, opened the app, started to change the time…

… and fell asleep with the phone in my hand before I actually finished setting the alarm :(

I rolled over and noticed the time at 7:45am, faced with the dilemma of either (i) jumping out of bed, skipping breakfast and a shower, throwing on sweats and racing to a review session I would sit through while half-asleep, or (ii) getting up at my leisure, enjoying a hot shower followed by a hot breakfast, dressing like something other than a ragamuffin, and just make up the missed review by studying my butt off for the ensuing 24ish hours.

So I picked Option #2 ;)

The tradeoff for frenetically studying yesterday and today is that my already-late research memo for Legal Letters will be getting turned in even further after deadline, giving me a -0- on that assignment and all but ensuring the best I can do in that class is now a C+. But given how thoroughly I (hopefully) dominated this midterm, I figure doing well in 4-credit ConLaw is slightly more important than 2-credit Legal Letters.

The 80-minute exam was comprised of 40 multiple choice questions, basically covering the first 3 chapters of Chemerinsky’s Constitutional Law textbook. Questions ranged from gimmes2 to real puzzlers,3 along with a few esoteric ones that folks either studied or didn’t.4

After the extensive study marathon, I blazed through the exam in about 30 minutes — earning a raised eyebrow from Madame Prosecutor and at least one 1L-worthy glare from another. But I knew what I knew and knew what I didn’t, so there wasn’t much point in overanalyzing :beatup:

We’ll see how it shakes out, and hope I can keep it up through finals :)

Hoping for: A

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From the grade-related archives:

  1. Since if I just press the snooze button, I’m inclined to do so repeatedly for over an hour :beatup: []
  2. “How many amendments were in effect when the Constitution was enacted?” (Zero) []
  3. Four similar hypothetical lawsuits and figuring out which one wasn’t deficient with respect to SCOTUS standing requirements. []
  4. “What was Justice Black’s opinion on the Executive’s inherent authority in the [7-opinion] Youngstown Sheet & Tube Co. v. Sawyer decision?” (There is none.) []

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So tomorrow’s exam day…

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Oct 13, 2010 in The 2L Life

… and the weather forecast calls for thunderstorms (for the first time in weeks) :beatup:

Coincidence?

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1

I love ConLaw. I do…

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Oct 12, 2010 in The 2L Life

but even I could happily do without a midterm exam review session at…

wait for it…

wait…

…8:00am :beatup:

The earliest 2L class this semester starts at 8:30am. The Durham County court system doesn’t even do anything before 9:00am. And Wednesdays are usually my days to sleep in :cry:

I’m irked having to not only be awake, but having to be bathed, clothed, at the law school and coherent enough to understand what I’m reviewing :mad:

Heading to bed early so I can get up on time. Good night y’all! :)

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TDot’s Tips: 1L Midterms “Quick Hits” Edition

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Oct 11, 2010 in TDot's Tips

This entry is devoted primarily to my 1L colleagues at the N.C. Central University School of Law, so if you’re not a Legal Eagle you can probably skip it :)

And if you’re not a 1L you can definitely skip it ;)

I also planned on making this a longer and more-detailed entry, but I didn’t realize the midterm schedule got switched up this year: instead of 2 days of regular class followed by double-stacked exams on Wednesday and Thursday, 1Ls this year get one midterm a day at 8:00am :surprised:

So with CivPro behind y’all and most of you asleep already heading into Ks tomorrow, here’s a few quick points to keep in mind:

  1. Get the 1L Stuff. If you haven’t already, make sure to download the 1L Stuff ZIP archive I put online for y’all. This is basically a collection of every 1L outline and brief I could get my hands on last year; it includes everything from the 1L folder folks pass around, along with stuff other folks gave me. There are probably quite a few duplicate files, but there’s also a wide breadth of outlines to study from1 :)
  2. Focus on the multiple choice. We use a strict-C curve at NCCU Law, which means (i) the median grade has to be a C2 and (ii) professors usually have to use some kind of subjective criteria to ensure that distribution. That subjective component is unavoidably your essay, since multiple choice answers are either right or wrong. And because it’s subjective it means a stellar essay may not net you as many points (comparatively speaking) if everyone else in the class does well on the essay too. So if you can ace the multiple choice, you’ll have a significant advantage before your professor even grabs your essay for grading.
  3. Watch the clock. Hopefully you’ve read the Final Exam tips and you’re knocking out the multiple choice questions first. If you’re not — or if the multiples seem to be taking longer than you think they should — make sure to keep checking the clock sporadically so you know how much time you have left. Otherwise you’ll end up like me on my CivPro II final :beatup:
  4. Sleep! For some unknown reason, 1Ls seem to think law school is like college and all-nighters are an effective way to do test prep. Don’t do it! You need to be able to decipher complex hypos on the multiple choice, spot the issues in an even longer hypo for the essay(s), and write coherently about it as well. You’re only going to be able to do that on a decent night’s sleep, and ideally a good breakfast before you head to the test.
  5. Read the Final Exam tips too. The same stuff I mentioned then applies to midterms too ;)

Oh, and be prepared to not get your grades until the end of the month :beatup:

That’s it from me y’all — GOOD LUCK on your exams!! :D

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Past TDot’s Tips entries:

  1. And if you happen to be a Mac user like me, having this folder indexed by Spotlight makes it easy to pull up case briefs on the fly later in the semester ;) []
  2. See the bar graphs in some of the older grade-related entries for distributions from my 1L year. []

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2

It’s that time of year again

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Oct 10, 2010 in The 2L Life

Good evening folks! :)

Don’t have time to write anything substantive tonight because I spent longer than expected trying to get caught up in the reading for ConLaw. It’s midterms time again at the N.C. Central University School of Law, meaning any 2Ls enrolled in ConLaw or Business Associations are frantically trying to get caught up on readings and refining outlines and such.

Myself included :beatup:

Personally I’m just glad I’m not a 1L anymore, having to go through the gauntlet they’ve got coming up. At some point this week I’ll hopefully post some midterm-related info for those 1L colleagues, along with a general rundown of my semester so far in the classes where I don’t have midterms.

Given the recent proliferation of the “In Case You Missed It” posts though, consider yourself forewarned now that I have no clue when those entries will actually get posted ;)

Until then, have a great night!

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