Random musings to close the weekend…

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Apr 18, 2010 in Randomness

This week is going to be all sorts of ridiculous, so rather than try to put together a cogent entry today I’ve opted for the bullet-point approach:

  • I hate being around NCCU Law this time of year. I’m convinced the only people that study at a law school are the super-Type A personalities about to have brain aneurysms over the possibility they’ll get an A- instead of an A. The stress in the air is palpable… and for reasons unknown it cripples my ability to focus and get things done.
  • It’s even more odd considering I have colleagues who head over to UNCCH Law or Duke Law for “a more relaxing study environment”… but also know several students at both of those institutions who come to NCCU for the same thing :crack: Bizarre…
  • Unfortunately my apartment isn’t much better for the whole exam-week study marathon — it’s structured to be a laid-back reading atmosphere, not one for outlining, reviewing outlining, memo drafting, and handling the other non-law-related business coming up this week.
  • Added apartment distraction? Wii Sports Resort. I’m a much better golfer on it than I am in real life :beatup:
  • And I literally just found out the legal research memo I thought was due at 8am Wednesday is actually due at 8am Tuesday… #fml
  • In blog-related news, I’ve finally started using tags (only took me 9 months!) so at some point in the weeks ahead I’ll go back through the old entries and tag them appropriately.
  • Possible Gravatar pic?

    I’m also contemplating a change to my Gravatar pic, from the current “colonial eagle” to the one at the right. Is that not one of the most badass eagle pics you’ve ever seen? :lovestruck: I’m kinda partial to the current one though, so still debating…
  • I also added a number of bloggers to the blogroll, discovered through the ClearAdmit B.o.B. nominations I mentioned yesterday along with a handful of others linked off those sites. Make sure you check them out! :D
  • Speaking of new bloggers, Madame Prosecutor decided to join the law student blogging craze yesterday — I’ve got no clue what she’s going to end up writing about, but you can follow along here.
  • And with Madame Prosecutor now entering the arena, that makes 3 Legal Eagles I’m aware of in the blogosphere (the other has his blog here)… and we’re all 1Ls in the same section :surprised: So the self-proclaimed “honors kids” are in §102. The class’s political leaders have been in §101. But only §103 is running the law school to the point where we’re willing to open the window for y’all to see what goes down ;)
  • Speaking of §103, I liked CivPro a lot more last semester…
  • I’m going sufficiently insane that for the life of me I couldn’t find the printed version of QuietStorm’s beef tips recipe anywhere in the kitchen… so I logged on to the blog from my phone :beatup:
  • No matter how things turn out and no matter how stressed I get, I know 2 weeks from now it will all be over. It’s a great feeling :)

I hope all of you had an amazing weekend, enjoy the rest of your Sunday, and have a terrific week ahead! :D

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“…We now return you to your regularly scheduled programming, already in progress.”

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Mar 22, 2010 in The 1L Life

April can’t get here fast enough :beatup:

I’m currently sitting in an auto repair shop, getting even more work done on my only-8-years-old Ford Focus,1 so I figured I’d use the unexpected downtime to finally catch y’all up on some of the events that precipitated my recent absence.

  • We got midterm grades back last week. I’ll have a thorough review of everything some time this week, but until then I’ll just say the results turned out well… except in Contracts… again :cry:
  • Late Wednesday night was spent working on a “pathfinder” for our Legal Research memos — basically a 15ish page document listing possible citation sources among case law, statutes, law journals, etc. Pretty total waste of time but at least it got done.
  • After Thursday classes, I used the evening to piece together my initial closing argument for NCCU Law‘s annual Mary Wright 1L Closing Argument competition, which is basically the big-time end-of-the-year mirror image to November’s Opening Statement competition that was used to pick the highly successful 1L Trial Team.
  • Friday was devoted to stressing out over that aforementioned closing. The competition starts at 6pm, I leave my apartment around 5:00pm to make sure I’ve got plenty of time to make the 20min drive, and what happens? I get a flat tire :beatup: And even though I’m pretty adept at changing tires and making car repairs in general2 I couldn’t get the doggone thing taken off the car — I bought new tires back in the frigidity of December, they were installed by the shop, and with the warm weather basically the rim got stuck to the brake drum. So I had to frantically get in touch with one of the folks from the trial team and hitch a ride to campus.
  • Luckily I made it to the law school in time to still check in and participate, and did well enough to advance to the final round on Sunday. Then worked for another hour or so after to finally get the dead tire off my car and put the donut on :beatup:
  • On Friday I also filed to run for Treasurer of our Student Bar Association.  Clearly I didn’t learn my lesson from last time. Elections are this Thursday so we’ll see how it goes.
  • Saturday was Wii Day — I cleaned up the house, got the tire patched, talked with Madame Prosecutor about law school miscellany, then spent the entire evening/night playing Wii. Probably should have been studying, but damn it felt good to relax.
  • Then yesterday was spent stressing out about the Closing Argument finals,3 then afterwards heading home and starting to study for Monday classes…
  • …at which point I realized I hadn’t figured out my schedule for Fall 2010 :)
  • Then this morning I woke up bright early, successfully registered for 8am classes (I’ll post the schedule later), went to CivPro, talked to Professor Ks about my dismal Contracts midterm, and then went to the auto shop… where I’ve been sitting ever since :beatup:

So yeah, that catches y’all up on the craziness that has been my life for the past few days :) Hope all of you have a great afternoon! :D

  1. “Define ‘even more,’ you ask? I’ll put it to you like this — I’m never buying another Ford unless I’m given a really sweet deal. []
  2. Because, if you couldn’t tell from the opening sentence, my Ford is a piece of mechanical @#$%. []
  3. Made sure to leave 2 hours early this time, just in case I got another flat :beatup: []

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This whole law school “competition” thing…

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Feb 19, 2010 in Drama

…is a complete and total farce. jsyk.

Let me preface this entry by saying I’ve had a downright blissful experience at the N.C. Central University School of Law so far. For all the internet talk about gunners and Socratic nightmares and everything else that supposedly makes law school such a horrible experience, I haven’t really encountered it.

My less-than-stellar moments of Socratic hazing (notably in Contracts and in Torts) receded from my memory almost as quickly as they happened; I actually can’t remember either day at all except what I wrote here on the blog :beatup:

Even the personal drama that crops up at every school has been minimal. There were some childish inquiries about Madame Prosecutor a few weeks in, some unrelated ASG issues that same month, and only a pair of bona fide law-related gripes before and after midterms — both by the same people, all of whom have been notably silent since finals.

The general lack of drama can be seen by the category counts: in 154 posts over the past 6 months,1 only 4 of them went in the “Drama” listing.

So it’s a little grating when it seems like someone is going out of their way to be ridiculous.

Those of you who are regular readers here at law:/dev/null2 know I’m pretty much completely open about my grades, posting a class-by-class list of both the Fall ’09 midterm results along with my final exam grades and current GPA. My rationale for doing so is a blend of principle and pragmatism.

On the principle side, I just don’t see why grade secrecy is that big a deal so I feel no compulsion to invest energy in keeping mine secret.

On the pragmatism side, it’s a combination of 3 things:  (i) because grade info is an artificially constrained supply (by virtue of folks keeping grades secret), demand for grade info/gossip is high; (ii) I have a horrible poker face,3 so the first person to ask me for my grades would inevitably get either the truth or a poorly-concealed lie; and (iii) since someone could get the info in person without any trouble, putting it online for everyone to get without any trouble theoretically levels the playing field and destroys its social value as gossip, consequently reducing/eliminating the number of people talking about my grades (which ideally is the objective anyway).

Besides, if it bothers any of you that much you can always stop reading :)

Bearing that background in mind, I also don’t mind talking about grades when folks ask me. I had a candid conversation with Rico during our run on Tuesday. Co-Counsel4 hit me up on Gchat to ask about yesterday’s LRP quiz. And as I was leaving CrimLaw today I chatted with Rockstar about how crazy people can act sometimes in this environment.

It turned out to be a prophetic conversation.

When I got home I cut on a Law & Order rerun and started catching up on emails and Facebook messages. While I was working on the latter one of my classmates, clearly in a petulant mood, starts ranting at me over FBchat about my inquisitiveness during CrimLaw. Apparently I’m annoying… even though Professor CrimLaw has made it clear on numerous occasions that if the class doesn’t start speaking up he’ll forgo Q&A-style teaching in favor of the less-preferred lecturing from the podium. That and I plan on doing this professionally so I’d like an answer while the question and material are both fresh in my brain ;)

In general I didn’t respond to her diatribe beyond the occasional “gotcha” and “ok,” which apparently only pissed this chick off more. She closes with “if u spent half as much effort studying as u do asking questions maybe u’d have grades like mine.”

::cue scratching record sound effect::

Honestly I couldn’t even be mad about the remark, that’s how derisible it was. I just replied with a “lmao k” and that was the end of the conversation.

I noted all the way back in September that there’s far more to a lawyer than a GPA.5 We’ve all got different interests, we’ve all got different objectives, and in general we’re all going to end up at different places in life — professionally, temporally or geographically. As long as I’ve got my 2.5 required for most extracurricular orgs, I’m satisfied. You should be too.

I’ll put it another way:  I have no interest in law journal or becoming a corporate attorney. You have no interest in trial team or throwing criminals in prison. Almost by definition, we’re not in competition with each other. So do us both a favor and spare me your sanctimony :heart:

And if my questions are that irksome, convince your classmates that a lecture is less boring than a Q&A :*

To the rest of you, please forgive my ranting :oops:  I hope you all have a great night! :D

  1. Can you believe we’ve been in law school that long?! []
  2. THANK YOU!! :) []
  3. See my losses at poker night if you need an example :beatup: []
  4. Co-Counsel’s new to law:/dev/null, a 1L in a different section. You’ll probably read more about her later. []
  5. Though if this girl’s an example, tact apparently isn’t included. []

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TDot’s Tips: Final Exam Edition

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Dec 16, 2009 in TDot's Tips

Sorry for the extended break, I was enjoying the whole “class is over and I don’t have anything to do”-ness of winter break.  But today was mostly spent at the law school, meaning it was time to finally get around to resuming the blog posts here at law:/dev/null :)

Today itself was… interesting.  I was fortunate enough to make the 1L trial advocacy team for a competition next month, but the preliminary interview for the Client Counseling Competition was an unmitigated disaster. I’m lucky Madame Prosecutor didn’t wring my neck in the middle of the interview room because I clearly don’t know the first thing about interviewing potential clients :beatup:

Fortunately I’m getting the experience now so I’ll be in better shape a few weeks from now.

Speaking of getting experience: exams! Wow. That was an experience.

My classmates and I had a little heads up on how everything was going to happen since the N.C. Central University School of Law is one of apparently few law schools that provide midterm exams. But in the words of MDG: “The difference between midterms and finals is like the difference between a chihuahua and a great dane.”

He wasn’t lying.

The multiple choice questions in all of the classes were almost absurdly nitpicky (hat tip to Jansen for the word choice ;)). It was one of those situations where I could tell what specific topic the professor was trying to test, but the particulars were sufficiently complex that I couldn’t say with any degree of certainty whether or not I chose the right answer. And of course nearly every question had “D. All of the above. E. None of the above.” as the last two answer choices.

I’m taking solace in the fact I finished all of the essays, which was a switch from midterms.

Anyhow, now that exams are over I figured I’d share some of my own tips on exam prep. I stipulate that some of this reiterates advice other blawgers have already given — see FTS and FO and idswj — but I figured I’d tell you what worked for me so you have another perspective to add when considering different techniques ;)

  1. DON’T STRESS! If you ignore every other bullet point in this entry, remember this. One of the awkward moments of final exams was spent trying to console a friend who was having a mental breakdown, even though she’s one of maybe 4 people in our section who I’d bet actual cash on knowing the material backwards and forwards. Yes, grades are important — but they’re not the end of the world. Stressing out to the point of melting down just makes you less competitive when you take the actual test.
  2. Rehearse if it helps. No matter how many times folks read that earlier bullet, some of them are still going to freak out over exams. One way to help deal with that nervousness is to practice under as-close-to-real-life conditions as you can get. Find practice exams and force yourself to take them under strict time conditions; use a stopwatch to time you if necessary. If you can only find 1 or 2 practice exams, re-take them until you’re comfortable. Remember the objective with these practice exams isn’t necessarily to get the material down cold, but instead to help you stay calm in the actual test.
  3. Study however works best for you. It may sound strange, but I’ve become a firm believer in Dr. Psych’s comments on learning styles. I’m overwhelmingly a kinesthetic/”tactile” learner — I learn by doing. For me that means writing out index cards (CivPro) or taking practice exams (Property). If you’re a visual learner, you’ll probably benefit from reading and re-reading your outline several times. And if you’re an aural learner, try saying your outline aloud so you hear it. Matching your study habits with your study style helps burn the information deep into your mind for finals :)
  4. Sleep. Adequate rest is important to remembering the information you absorbed studying, and it will help you stay focused on the exam itself. Trying to go off 2-3 hours of sleep because you pulled an all-nighter is counterproductive. You should have learned that in undergrad :P
  5. Do the multiple choice questions first. Unless you’re *very* disciplined with your test-taking skills, knock out the multiple choice questions before moving to the essays. A handful of my colleagues tried to reverse what they tackled first since several folks ran out of time on the midterms, and a few never made it to the multiples at all on the final as a result. Essays are free-form, so we naturally spend more time writing, tweaking, editing, adding, etc. They’re a huge time sink, and if you don’t grab the easy points first (the multiples) you risk missing them entirely.
  6. Remember the Rules of Fight Club. Mariel said it best, so I’ll defer to her ;)
  7. Smile (when it’s over). You’ve survived. Pat yourself on the back for a semester’s worth of hard work, and know you’re that much closer to the end of the road and the J.D. waiting there for you :D
  8. For those of you who are finally done with your final exams, congratulations! :) And to those of you still slogging through the trenches on the way to the end of the semester — GOOD LUCK! :D

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Law school: 6.82% finished!

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Dec 2, 2009 in The 1L Life

The Property I final exam is in the bag :D

I left the law school feeling like I did yesterday — not sure how to feel about it. There were about a dozen questions (out of 60) that I highlighted to re-review since I wasn’t certain on the answers. Then the essay question was on adverse possession… of chattel. Also known as the one @#$%ing topic I didn’t study thoroughly because I figured (foolishly) there was no conceivable way The Traveling Professor1 could find enough issues to raise to justify picking that particular topic for an essay worth 40% of the final exam, especially when we covered adverse possession (of property) on the midterm.2

And of course after the exam everyone started chattering about the questions and the essay while we’re all waiting for the ExamSoft printouts, which made me question my answers even more, which made me do a mini-freakout in my mind since this was likely my easiest exam :beatup:

For the record, I agree with Mariel on Fight Club :P

The upside is that TTP follows the “self-curving exam” model mentioned at Fearfully Optimistic, and I knew enough of the easy and average questions that I already know I passed with at least a C. Add that in with the midterm performance and I’m looking at a minimum B- for the course — which is far better than my undergraduate GPA and, therefore, good enough for me ;)

Between Property I now being done and Legal Reasoning & Analysis behind me, that means 6 of 88 credit hours are knocked out… so I’m officially 6.82% done with law school :D

Celebrating tonight by catching up on Facebook activity and watching Law & Order reruns (Jack McCoy is my hero), then starting the Civil Procedure cramming process tomorrow.

Have a great night everybody! :)

  1. TTP for short. The nickname comes from the fact she lives in California, so she flies in Monday morning for MTW classes, then flies out Wednesday afternoon for the weekend. She’s an amazing professor but one of those folks where their soft-spoken nature makes them intimidating. If that makes sense. []
  2. Madame Prosecutor, by contrast, insisted adverse possession of chattel was going to be the essay topic. It agitates the @#$% out of me when she’s right… :mad: []

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Happy Thanksgiving everybody!!

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Nov 26, 2009 in Randomness

Second only to Independence Day, I have to confess Thanksgiving is my other favorite holiday of the year :D

It’s not about the food (though that’s definitely a perk for someone on the “impoverished law student” diet). Thanksgiving is a useful holiday for benchmarking how much things have changed over the years and reminds me how truly fortunate I’ve been.

Today I enjoyed a delicious meal with a half-dozen or so classmates who stayed in town to study for finals, prepping for the end of my first semester in professional school.

1 year ago I was in Virginia Beach visiting my grandparents, still a semester away from finishing my undergraduate degree, but enjoying the insane schedule that came with being a first-term President of the UNC Association of Student Governments and a second-term Student Senate President at N.C. State — highlighted by the Raleigh-to-Elizabeth City-to-Virginia Beach-to-Greenville-to-Raleigh itinerary for the break :)

Myself and QuietStorm back in 2004

Myself and QuietStorm back in 2004

5 years ago I had an equally insane schedule but it wasn’t quite as fun. I was a college dropout working 2 jobs, enjoying a small-but-delicious Thanksgiving meal at the country club apartment I shared with QuietStorm, thankful for having a full-time job after the 2004 election season ended but also relishing the day off before I headed back on Friday to work overtime on some pleadings. It was at that point I decided BigLaw was probably not my cup of tea :beatup:

And 10 years ago I didn’t have much of a Thanksgiving meal at all, with QuietStorm and I sharing some EasyMac and leftover Pokey Stix from Gumby’s while we surreptitiously stayed in my dorm room (despite the residence halls being closed) because I didn’t have the money to travel and she took pity on me wanting to make sure I enjoyed my Thanksgiving (it worked :heart: ).

Some people ask why my ego is so outrageously oversized.  In all candidness I’ve even wondered myself every now and then (ok really just once). Yet when I go back through the old photos and old emails from holidays past, when I reflect on going from a high school scholar to a college dropout, from being homeless to living in a ridiculously swank apartment, from having to work 2 jobs just to make ends meet to studying law full-time while being a student advocate on the side — it’s hard to be humble.

But it’s harder not to be humbled.

For all the experiences, I owe most of it to circumstances and people beyond my control. So with Thanksgiving 2009 winding to a close, here’s a brief (non-exhaustive) list of some of the things I’m thankful for this year:

Can you guess which one is the college degree? :)

Can you guess which one is the college degree?

  • My degree — After I dropped out back in 2000, I thought I’d never graduate from college. By the time I made it to my senior year in Computer Science, I really thought I’d never graduate from college :beatup: But for whatever reason my teachers took pity on me, and the Bachelors of Science degree they gave me this past June is proudly framed and hanging on my wall.
  • The NCCU School of Law — Out of my 3 options for law school, NCCU was really the only one I could afford. It turned out to be an excellent fit, plus I met some pretty awesome people in the process :D
  • Madame Prosecutor — Speaking of those classmates, no one has challenged me quite like this lady. She drives me absolutely bonkers at times but I’ve got no doubt my grades and overall 1L experience have been better because of her.
  • My SG colleagues — This is such a diverse group of people I can’t really single anyone out, but working with these folks has been the highlight of my life for the past 4 years. I appreciate and respect all of you, and look forward to the great things you’ll be doing in the years ahead!
  • Q.T. — One of those aforementioned colleagues, she’s not only helped me get things done in UNCASG but has been a great friend as well. She even helped me study for the CivPro midterm :)
  • é›…é›… — Dealing with me on a daily basis is bad enough in a normal year; it’s even worse when I’m active in 2 separate Student Government groups, interning downtown at the N.C. General Assembly, and trying to graduate in Computer Science. é›…é›… supported me the whole time even when more rational people would have bailed, and some of the best times in my life have been spent with her :)
  • Nan and Pops — I love my family, but my grandparents deserve more recognition than I could ever give them here. They helped raise me, helped me get back on my feet as a dropout, helped me stay in school when I made it back, the list goes on. When I was at N.C. State the 2nd time through I was terrified one of them would pass away before I got my degree, and more so than anyone else on this earth they’re responsible for me graduating and making it to law school.
  • God — I’m not a particularly religious guy, and I’m generally averse to publicly displaying my faith (not sure why, I’ve just been that way my whole life). Even so, I’ve had so many great experiences and been surrounded by so many amazing people that I can’t ascribe it to mere coincidence. I just hope I can live my life in a way that reflects my appreciation for all the blessings I’ve been given.

I’ll end the list there, since this entry is already pretty long ;)

I hope all of you had an amazing Thanksgiving with friends and loved ones! And remember: it gets even better from here :D

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From O to A for life…

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Nov 25, 2009 in The 1L Life

Skipping the usual blog entry today folks. I’m currently studying Property with Madame Prosecutor in preparation for final exams that start… wait for it… next Wednesday :eek:

We’ve been going over defeasible estates to the point that my eyes are bleeding.

(ok not really, but I can imagine bleeding eyes feel roughly the same :P )

Have a great day folks! And I’ll hopefully stop slacking on the entries once I’m more comfortable with finals :)

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“Just because everyone else is doing it…”

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Nov 23, 2009 in The 1L Life

Peer pressure was never really a problem for me growing up. I think. If it was, I’ve successfully repressed the bad memories ;)

From left: me, the SBP of UNCSA, the SBVP of ECSU, and the SBP of UNCW

From left: me, the SBVP of ECSU, the SBP of UNCSA,  and the SBP of UNCW

But now that I’m older, mentioning the word “competition” coupled with a friend’s name is like waving a bloody slab of meat in shark-infested water.

Case in point: deciding to compete with some of my UNCASG folks in a rock wall climbing competition before Saturday’s football game, even though I’d never climbed a rock wall in my life (I came in 4th of 4 :( ).

Law school is no different.

Madame Prosecutor and I are already teaming up for the American Bar Association‘s Client Counseling Competition even though it’s entirely dominated by 2Ls and 3Ls. Then earlier today I got an email announcing that it’s the last day to sign up for a 1L oral argument competition sponsored by Kilpatrick Stockton… and nearly half of my section is already signed up.

So naturally I did the same :beatup:

It looks like it’s part of a larger mock trial competition and the 1Ls are only doing the opening statements, so the volume of work is far less than having to do actual research on securities fraud (my prep topic for the CCC). I’m just wondering if this competitive zeal is going to continue into my legal career, or if I’ll end up getting burned out from it… :)

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I quit!

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Nov 16, 2009 in Technology

Just kidding :)

It does seem to be that time of year though. From new blogs I just discovered this week to that guy who unknowingly got me blogging, it seems to be a post-summer of discontent for law students. My own fingers are firmly crossed that I don’t get hit with the Reality Stick until after the J.D. is mounted on my wall… :beatup:

The thought of getting out of law school did cross my mind earlier today, but it had nothing to do with exams.

Madame Prosecutor wanted to start a new web-based venture (I’ll let her furnish the details at a later date/time) and mentioned it to me a couple days ago. She asked for my help. And since I graduated with a degree in Computer Science, used to build websites professionally1), and already run law:/dev/null, I figured I’d walk her through buying a domain name and set her up with a WordPress installation on one of my own servers since I could do it all at next-to-no cost.

And from the minute she sat down next to me, there was a steady stream of back-and-forth commentary between us over legalese. From figuring out who was going to register the URL (my GoDaddy account, her billing information, and whenever she sets up her own account I’ll transfer the domain to her) to the details over the WordPress installation (I keep root access for emergencies and leave 100% of all daily operations to her) to ownership of the content (she keeps it) to liability for illegal activities taking place (she keeps that too) and more, we hammered out the rudiments of a full-blown contract.

It made me wish I was back in politics.

My travails in the WakeGOP notwithstanding, the political arena largely operates on trust.  Now you can differentiate between what I call “positive” trust and “negative” trust:  the former is where you actively trust someone because you know them / have worked with them / think they’re a good person / etc, and the latter is passive / the basis of economic game theory / “rational people respond predictably to incentives” / you know what someone will do without even meeting them / etc.

But trust is ultimately at the root of the system. It’s the implied foundation of one of my rules of politics: loyalty is more important than competence (in politics at least).

So when I used to build websites for politicians, there were no extensive formal contracts. Somebody told me they needed a website, I’d quote a price, they’d counter-offer if it was too high, we’d settle on an amount, I’d get the site specifics and go to work.  Out of the dozen or so sites I put together there was never a dispute over me getting paid or over the customer being satisfied with the finished product. No one needed or contemplated reducing everything to writing, much less having a choice of venue clause.

And here I was helping out a friend with comparatively miniscule project, and both of us are trying to make sure we formally protect ourselves from getting screwed by the other’s activities :crack:

shootmenowplzkthxu :beatup:


In other technology-related news, I went ahead and installed a FeedBurner plugin for law:/dev/null. I’m still not sure what it does, but I was told by a fellow blawger I needed to have it — and since Fight the Hypo and No634 used it, I figured it was legit. You can access the “Subscribe” page up at the top of the blog.

And at some point I’ll fix the little “Subscribe” links that show up on each post to actually go where they’re supposed to go… just as soon as I figure out why I can only see them on some posts and not on others :beatup:

Finally, I stumbled upon a blog by one of my fellow Legal Eagles earlier today. It’s not solely law-focused and the updates have been sporadic, but it’s worth checking out. The guy’s got one of the sharpest wits in the class — his Facebook status routinely keeps people rolling, and I’ve jotted down a snippet or two on occasion. Enjoy: http://realgoesright.blogspot.com/

That’s it for tonight folks, I’m off to enjoy the Parol Evidence Rule and more defeasible estate festivities :)  Don’t forget to go watch the Leonid meteor shower around 2am EST! :D

  1. The backend coding at least. I manifestly fail at graphic design, as evidenced by the fact I had to use someone else’s theme for this site ; []

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Lowering the standards of “gunner”

Posted by T. Greg Doucette on Nov 9, 2009 in Drama

As the semester has progressed, I’ve turned into something of a recluse when it comes to my fellow Legal Eagles. It’s not intentional of course — like I mentioned last week, it’s a combination of trying to avoid drama and utilizing an apartment that’s catered to my learning style. Madame Prosecutor and I occasionally talk outside of class to study, and DMoff mentions ASG business every now and then. But since the whole study group thing didn’t really pan out and I’m hardly ever at the law school aside from class, I don’t have many non-class friendships among the 1Ls :(

I’ve got one exception, a young lady who I haven’t actually come up with a nickname for yet. We’ve got one of those friendships where we’d probably be perfect for each other romantically, but we also both have pre-existing interests so instead you end up with the bona fide respect and admiration of two competitive people going through a common struggle. She basically keeps me in check when my exasperation gets out of line and has occasionally been my conscience vis-à-vis law school.

That backstory is the preface to a conversation over the weekend, where she informed me that several folks (and by “several” I mean 3; any guesses on who?) have started referring to me as one of the class “gunners” because I posted my midterm grades here at law:/dev/null.  Professor Torts inadvertently helped that narrative on Friday when no one volunteered to brief the only case we had (an easy one, Palsgraf v. Long Island R.R. Co. (248 N.Y. 339)), so in the interests of getting out of class I offered — and got referred to as “one of our favorite volunteers” in that not-quite-sarcastic-but-not-quite-not-sarcastic tone that makes someone think they’ve volunteered one time too often :beatup:

For the sake of brevity, we’ll ignore the general silliness that goes with the secrecy around law school grades. As much as people claim school is all about competition, markets grow over time and everyone is better off collaborating than competing.  Basic economic principles.

The point that really threw me is that my grades were decisively unimpressive. I’m in 5 classes — I did really well in 2 (CivPro and Property), really bad in 2 (Torts and LRA), and I’m firmly in the middle for the 5th (Contracts). And while we all know gunners don’t necessarily have good grades, the logician in me thinks good grades would need to be a prerequisite if posting them is going to be treated as a criteria for gunner-hood.

So my grades are essentially average. I don’t volunteer unless it helps us get out of class sooner. I’ve crashed and burned on numerous occasions when I am called on. I’m rarely at the law school, not involved in school-related activities, and stopped over-dressing after orientation.

If that makes me a gunner, y’all have really lowered the standards. jsyk. :P

Anyhow, I’m off to bed.  Marine Corps’ birthday is tomorrow, meaning an extra-grueling PT session in the morning. Night everybody! :D

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