Tuesday, December 26, 2006

The Baby Jesus Wants to Rock (Rock!)

Thoughts upon hearing "Oh Come All Ye Faithful" on the radio this morning:

  • Damn it, I've been trying to avoid Christmas songs.
  • But this shower radio is so hard to tune, it's not really worth changing channels.
  • Oh well, it's Christmas day and I've done a pretty good job so far, I guess there's not much I can do.
  • Hey, this is actually rocking out pretty hard.
  • You know, I never noticed how much this song sounds like "We're Not Gonna Take It."
Thoughts upon getting out of the shower, looking up the two songs to compare them, and discovering that I had been listening to this:
  • . . .
  • Twisted Sister got back together to record a Christmas album?
  • . . .
  • . . .
  • Awesome.
  • Good to see Dee Snider still looks exactly like Sarah Jessica Parker.
  • With a little more make-up, he'd be a dead-ringer for Moulin Rouge-era Christina Aguilera.
  • Hey J.J. French, I'm not sure grinding up on the guy's wife is really in the Christmas spirit.
  • Although he seems to be taking it pretty well.
  • Yeah, let him play the drums, it'll make him feel better.
  • Oh good, a happy ending. You see, chubby newlywed guy, it is a wonderful life.
Now all we need is for Eddie Van Halen and David Lee Roth to put aside their differences (again) and crank out a 2-disc Hanukkah box set in time for next year.

Thursday, December 21, 2006


Well, exams are over, and I would just like to commend some of my fellow students on their incredible ability to go from typing an exam to fall-down drunk in mere minutes. Your rate of absorption is truly impressive.

Wednesday, December 20, 2006

Who Understands Those Lawyers?

Torts exam tomorrow? No time to make an outline? Got ya covered:
(with apologies to Sir Mix-A-Lot)

I like big torts and I can not lie.
You other lawyers can't deny,
That when a barge goes down in the middle of the bay
And the bargee is away,
You get stung, now your case is just junk.
'Cause you know when that boat was sunk,
Deep in the sea she's docked in,
Hand's gonna write a new doctrine.

Oh Byrne-ey, when the barrel hit'cha,
They wrote res ipsa.

MacDougald versus Perry:
Spare tire fell and (was so scary).

Ooh, Vosburg, thin-skin,
You say you got kicked in the shins?
Well, sue me sue me,
'Cause now you're an amp-u-tee.
So no more dancin',
But the court's advancin',
That intent, went,
With the cause of the event.

I'm tired of state Supremes,
Sayin' duty is the thing.
Take the average plaintiff and ask him that,
You want the judgment fat.
So, lawyers! (Yeah!) Lawyers! (Yeah!)
Has your client got a tort? (Hell yeah!)
Tell 'em to take it! (Take it!) Take it! (Take it!)
Take that case to court!
Cases on track!

(Now you face an affirmative duty)
Cases on track!
(Now you face an affirmative duty)

Cases on track!
Yeah, buddy ... when it comes to Galindo, duty ain't got nothin' to do with my protection. B is less than PL? Ha ha, only if it's my tree.

So Jenner rolls a Chevy, licensed by the state D-MV,
But the Chevy ain't s'posed to crash in the shop of Hammontree.
Judge Mildred Lillie won't, blame, him;
A seizure moved, his, limbs.

You can make cross-claims you cook up,
But we won't lose that suit.
Some judges wanna play that "hard" role,
And tell you that the case ain't gold.
So they demur it, N.O.V it,
And I pull up quick to appeal it.
So your argument fell flat,
Well I ain't down with that!
'Cause your case is strong and your name's McPherson,
And your wheel did worsen.
To the Buick guys in the factories:
You made it, this thing!

Just like Escola, glass in Cola
I'm hurt and want payola.

Some knucklehead tried to diss,
But his liability's strict.
Clients came but he chose to hurt 'em
And I pull up quick to alert 'em
So plaintiffs, if the case is sound,
And you want to make sure fault is found,
Dial 1-800-WINWIN1
And speak them nasty thoughts.
Cases on track!

(Mouse over case details for citations)

Friday, December 15, 2006

Playing the Odds

I recently became familiar with Credit Card Roulette, in which a group goes out to eat, then everyone drops a credit card in and the server picks one at random to pay for the whole bill. Everyone else gets a free lunch/dinner/alcoholic binge. Now I'm not much of a gambling man, but I like to make things a little interesting from time to time, and UVa Law's grading system is ripe for manipulation.

For those not in the know, the only rule is that all classes must have an average grade between 3.27 and 3.33. In practice, this means that the grades tend to fall mostly at and around B+, with a few outliers on each end, like a standard bell curve. This distribution is not required, however, because the rule is based on the mean, not the median, of the grades.
This key fact allows for Exam Roulette.

Exam Roulette would be played as follows: Instead of distributing the grades evenly about the mean, professors would commit to giving the bottom 10% of each class a C. This would allow them to score the other 90% of exams at or above the mean. So in your standard 30-person single-section class, 3 people would each get a C, 15 would get a B+, and 12 would get an A-. The mean would come in at exactly 3.33. The best part? As long as every professor participates, even the people who lost once per semester would have at least a B- average, assuming four graded classes.

It's probably not too late to e-mail your professors. 90% of law students already think they're above average, so why not make it true?

Thursday, December 14, 2006

Georgetown Law Acceptance Letters

I do not attend the Georgetown University Law Center. For the main reason why I'm happy about that decision, see here. Thanks to that post, however, I have a special insight into the GULC admission committee's behavior this year, because in the last week, I've had visitors from such varied Google search strings as:

  • georgetown law acceptance letters
  • GULC envelope at end of admissions cycle
  • law school envelope georgetown early called
  • admission letter georgetown law why so long
I like that last one. You can almost smell the desperation right through the internet. Look 0Ls, this is a stressful time for everybody. Take a break from worrying about law school. You're bound to get in somewhere; then you should probably worry. For now, focus on your undergrad exams. Play in the sunshine. If you live in a godforsaken part of the country like the one I left, play in the snow. Better yet, try to be more like some of my other recent visitors, and search things like:
  • follow the finger
  • honda AND crave AND legs
  • instructions on how to make a fake leg for free
You'll be much happier. Plus, you might find out how to make a fake leg for free. And you can't put a price on that. Because it's free.

Tuesday, December 12, 2006

Virginia Does Not Need a Myspace Account

"We are certainly going to put public safety ahead of these civil liberties concerns."

There are too many ridiculous things wrong with this proposal and I don't have time to list them, so I link without much comment.

I will say, however, kudos to Laura Ahearn of Parents for Megan's Law for pointing out the obvious technical flaw in the program, then immediately making a nonsensical alternative suggestion.

Wednesday, December 06, 2006

Give Yourself a Hand

Apparently, when a professor finishes the last class of the semester here, we applaud. (Unless, of course, it's Professor CivPro and he keeps taking questions for 45 minutes after the end of class time until all but about 12 out of 60 people have trickled out the back.) I guess this is common practice at most law schools and has already been discussed at length by a better man than I, so I won't get into it here.

But I'm told that all students at Mr. Jefferson's University clap for their instructors, whether that instructor is "the Mark McGwire of political analysts" or a lowly TA leading an eight-person discussion section of Statistics 110. This is not considered weird.

But I've thought about it, and while it most certainly is weird, it's harmless enough. At least the professors are there to appreciate it. It's certainly better than when the teachers in elementary school showed movies because they didn't feel like teaching the day before a vacation. As soon as the credits hit, most of the kids would start clapping away, as if the late director of The Cat From Outer Space was going to crawl out of his grave, drag himself to the school, and pop out from behind the rolling TV/VCR stand to take a bow before hitting us with an encore.

The Economics of Highlighting

The bookstore should implement leveled pricing. It would work like this:
You buy a book new for $100. When you sell it back, they look through it for highlighting/markings. If there are none, you get $50, and they sell it for $65. If there are, you can't sell the book back until you get your grades, and they pay you in accordance with your grade in the class. An A gets you $60, an A- gets you $55, and so on. The store then sells these books for prices commensurate with the grades their highlighting earned.

This system would serve several purposes. The bookstore could make more money on used books by targeting different parts of the market and further exploiting law students' insecurities. Students would have one more incentive to do well in class, and one more way of slipping their grades into casual conversation. ("I'll buy lunch today, I've got this $60 in my pocket from my Torts book.").

Most important, I wouldn't have bought my Crim book if I had known in advance that the last user had highlighted entirely the wrong things throughout the reading. Memo to previous owner: highlighting entire pages is a waste of time, ink, and my retinas. Also, you may have noticed that the headings in chapters were already in bold. You didn't need to highlight them to make them stand out. Finally, and if you take only one thing away from this message let it be this, stop writing things like "I♥EB" in the margins in pink highlighter.

Thursday, November 30, 2006

Delaware Needs a Myspace Account

In September after flying home and back over the course of a weekend: "Wow, with all this time spent in airports and waiting on the tarmac, not to mention getting delayed by Air Force One, we could have driven and it would have been cheaper without being much longer."

In November after spending 19.4% of the 125-hour Thanksgiving break in my car: "Oh. I guess not, then."

Although, to be fair, it would have been fine if Delaware hadn't picked last week to self-destructively seek attention. Someone should really talk to that state. Closing three out of four lanes of traffic immediately after a toll booth on I-95 the day before Thanksgiving so four guys can do some spot-welding at 3am is pretty much the state DOT equivalent of cutting yourself "just to feel alive."

Sunday, November 19, 2006

What Did One Dillard Fellow Say to the Other?

(overheard in Scott Commons between two Dillards on Major Memo Day and paraphrased badly, telephone-style.)

D1: I just want to tell them, "I know exactly how long you spent on this. Don't insult me."
D2: Yeah, it's too bad they know we don't decide whether they pass or not.
D1: I wish we did.

Consider them told, Dillard #1. Consider them told.

Thursday, November 16, 2006


A small sample of statements made by Professor Crim during class in the presence of visiting undergrads and their parents:

  • "Ah, see I didn't know that's how you made methamphetamines. I just know when I'm experiencing really good methamphetamines."
  • "You know wives never listen to their husbands."
  • "When I got back from Amsterdam, if I had anything left over from my trip, I wouldn't have made it through Dulles."
  • "So, let's say they catch the Charlottesville serial rapist. Not the local police, they're never going to catch that guy."*

*Note to prospective students: To the best of my knowledge, said rapist has not appeared since 2003, which is a long time in rapist-years. He has probably moved on. Charlottesville is still very safe. Please do not make the male-to-female ratio worse than it already is.

Monday, November 13, 2006

What is Embarrassment?

Note to RSS subscribers and cvilleblogs.com readers: This post relies on embedded and linked pictures. Blogspot blocks viewing images based on referrers, so you won't see the pictures unless you click to view the post itself.

I know it's a cliché to make fun of Celebrity Jeopardy, but if the Jeopardy writers themselves aren't letting that stop them, then neither will I.

Neil Patrick Harris got more of the Broadway musical questions right than Tony winner Bebe Neuwirth, yet it was somehow still news when he came out of the closet a few weeks ago. Third "celebrity" contestant: some guy who plays a coma patient on Desperate Housewives.

Second, this was an actual category:

The $1000 response was "What is a jab?"

In spite of the producers' fears that he might not be able to remember his own name, Doogie Howser actually did quite well. Coma guy? Not so much.

Wednesday, November 08, 2006

Revised Slogan

Virginia is for Lovers. Heterosexuals in Religiously-Sanctioned Long Term Monogamous Relationships.

I'm sure it will be just as popular with the tourism board.

Now be honest: Which one of you cast a write-in vote for Professor Harrison?

Tuesday, November 07, 2006

You Know What To Do

It's the first Tuesday after the first Monday of the eleventh month of an even-numbered year that's not evenly divisible by four. That's right, it's the midterms. So if you haven't checked a box, filled in a circle, flipped a lever, or touched a screen, get out there and do so before it's too late.

Because America without democracy is like law school without wireless internet access: scary and out of your control.

Friday, November 03, 2006

Background Check

Everyone knows that any potential employer even remotely interested in your resume will Google your name before they call. If they didn't, I probably wouldn't maintain this ridiculous quasi-anonymity thing I've got going on. But lawyers don't use Google, because you can't bill Google time to a client. Lawyers use Lexis-Nexis/Westlaw (hereafter "Lexlaw"). So before you other 1Ls send out your NALP-approved December 1st mass-mailing, you should Lexlaw yourself to see what they're going to find.

Unlike some of my fellow students, I've stayed out of the news for the most part, so I'm pretty safe in this area. I do, however, look forward to some interviewer mentioning that I won 3rd place in a fire prevention poster contest in 1995 or that I was once flatteringly described in print as "not a buffoon." If only Lexlaw carried pictures, so they could see why.

Sidenote: Thumbs up to the Law Weekly for the headline, "SBA President Adam Wolk tries to be funny." It's a full news article in just one sentence.

Tuesday, October 31, 2006

Possibly the Least-Enforced Law of All Time

From my absentee ballot instructions (emphasis in original):

If you have returned your absentee ballot, but find that you are able to vote in person, the law requires that you do so. You must go to the office of the Municipal Clerk no later than 10:00 a.m. on Election, Primary or Referendum Day before going to your polling place to vote in person.
"What's that honey? You don't think you're going to have the baby today? Okay, well I'd better head down to the municipal clerk's office to cancel my absentee ballot and let them know that I can stand in line all morning at the middle school instead. No, I can't just rely on the one I sent in. You remember when Henderson up the street got caught mowing his lawn before the polls closed a few years back. Nice fellow, that Henderson . . . I should put in a good word for him with the parole board. Anyway, I'll be back in a few hours, you need me to pick up anything?"

Wednesday, October 25, 2006

More Powerful than Locomotion

Some awesome ideas for Halloween costumes if your kid is in a wheelchair: Biker, Bulldozer, 1934 Bugatti Type 46.

Some pretty good ideas for Halloween costumes if your kid is in a wheelchair: Drummer w/drumset, Chef w/oven, King w/throne.

Kind of awkward ideas for Halloween costumes if your kid is in a wheelchair: Guy Losing His Leg in a Shark Attack, anything where the instructions say, "[t]o make the legs, stuff sweat pants with fiberfill."

Really, really, really awkward idea for a Halloween costume if your kid is in a wheelchair: Superman.

I cannot stress this last point enough: Superman + Wheelchair = Bad Taste. Always. The only way to make this any worse would be to add fake legs in the back at an awkward angle so it looks like Superman's spine has been severed.

[Goes to look at that picture again.]


Tuesday, October 24, 2006

Law School Makes My E-Mail Weird

A sample of contextual ads that I've gotten in Gmail in the last week:

  • "Kegspediter System - A controlled process for the return of empty kegs to the brewery."
  • All kinds of first aid and emergency equipment. These are only funny once I realized they were triggered by the hypothetical fact pattern in my Torts midterm.
  • "Crave Frat Brotherhood? - crave.honda.com - We feel your crave. Other people do too. Check out more craves."
  • "Insanity Testing - Search for Testing Resources and Info. Find What You Want Now."
  • "Daddy by 2 chix - cool daddy-to-be tees for the man behind the belly!"
  • Several dozen sites advertising admissions information and pre-written personal statements.
  • "Miss Your Grandkids? - New laws guarantee grandparents rights in every state - learn more!"
  • "Free Insanity - Get a Free Insanity. Offer Expires Today!"

Saturday, October 21, 2006

Impossible is Something

The story of Aleksey Vayner (né Garber) reminds me of my roommate from freshman year of college. I will call him "Mike," because (a) it's a common name and (b) his name is Mike.

Mike was a compulsive liar. Over the course of my first semester with him, I wrote down most of the ridiculous things he told me or my friends. The list was quite long, so I'll reproduce only the highlights here.

Mike is very athletic. He benches 310, and is a 5th degree black belt. When he was 15, he placed second in a national competition. (The sort of competition that would get him mentioned somewhere on the Internet, one would imagine.) Because his body is a lethal weapon, he is registered with the state and has an indicator to that effect on his license. (No he doesn't.) He also used to swim. When he was 14, he swam the 50-meter freestyle in 22 seconds. (This is especially impressive, given the world record.) He achieved these accomplishments in spite of the anorexia caused by his verbally abusive swim coach, wherein his body fat fell to 2%. Mike joined his fraternity's intramural volleyball team after they found out that he was All-State volleyball in high school. (Mike's high school shows no record of having a boy's volleyball team.)

During breaks, Mike worked as an assistant pro at a golf course, allowing him to meet a number of people. One is in the mafia, and offered to whack anybody Mike needs whacked. Mike once had to write a 500 page paper. He waited until the last minute, of course, and wrote the last 200 of them in around 6 hours. He also speaks Japanese and German fluently. He (or his 6'10" uncle, depending on which time he told me) drives a red Ferrari F50.

Obviously, such a life makes one irresistible to the ladies. Mike lost his virginity at age 13. At 18, he had never . . . helped himself because whenever he "had a need," he always had a willing partner. In addition to having had sex in several locations (including a movie theater and two libraries), Mike also owns a pair of underwear in which he has never failed to get laid.
I just looked him up, and he is apparently now employed at a Big Five Four accounting firm, no doubt ready and willing to contribute to whatever upcoming scandal/indictment turns that illustrious group into the Big Three.

Friday, October 20, 2006

I Was Tense, I Was Nervous

This is probably not going to be a favorite memory for player #3:

After 60 questions, poor Sharon managed to buzz in just enough to get one $800 question wrong and one $400 question right. And we all know what happens when Round III rolls along:

But in the scheme of things she'll be okay, because our bowtied friend went on to lose to this guy anyway.

Thursday, October 19, 2006

Meaningful Dialogue

Student: But what if...[proceeds into long and quite unlikely hypothetical involving banana peels, a set of stairs and some poor fellow who just won't look where he's going.] It's not a very good analogy, but--

Professor: No. It's not.

Saturday, October 14, 2006

These Guys Are Neat Guys

There's a lot of talk about how law school is just like high school, and in a lot of ways that's true. Still, I say it's an exaggerated stereotype, so here are some positive ways in which UVa Law differs from my high school:

  • Students allowed to leave school for lunch.
  • No football player making out with his cheerleader girlfriend on my locker between every class.
  • None of my high school teachers drove one of these.
  • Speaking of lockers, cherry wood > cherry red.
  • There's no band, the jocks have passed their glory days, and the goths sold out long ago, so pretty much everyone is part of the same "Nerd/Prep" clique.
  • Students allowed to cut across the courtyard.
  • No Less smoking in the bathrooms.
  • The Mormons have kids and the skanky girls don't.
  • Much less animosity between rival schools (that is, no one has driven down here and spray-painted "Penn Law" on the side of the building).
  • My girlfriend who lives 100 miles away actually exists.

Wednesday, October 11, 2006

Loki Works for the TSA

This article about a geologist's troubles with airport security has gotten a bit of buzz lately and I finally got around to reading the whole thing today, so I was quite amused to discover that the geologist in question is none other than one Robert M. Thorson, Ph.D. I had the opportunity to listen to Professor Thorson speak a few years ago about why a liberal arts education is important. By this I mean ol' Thor wasted a half hour of the audience's time telling us what it's like to write a weekly column and how clever some of his titles have been. Titles like "Canst Thou Hear Me Now?" and "Kerry Ignored the Frog Vote."

I'm actually surprised Thor's story didn't have him saying something like "Don't you know who I am? My column appears every Thursday on page A15 of the newspaper with the 54th-highest circulation in the country! Sometimes I get letters about it! I'm clever, damn it!"

I'm not going to get into how easy it would have been to go back and check the bag. Bradley International Airport is one of the smallest I've ever been to, and the baggage check is a mineral specimen's throw away from the security checkpoint.

I once had my own encounter with a carry-on bag, a stone, and excitable airport security officers, although with a few differences of circumstance. First, I was flying out of Milan, Italy. Second, the stone in question was actually a piece of Pompeii that I should not have been allowed to take out of the country. Third, the security officer apparently thought the x-ray image of the stone looked a lot like the x-ray image of a luger pistol. Fourth, I was eight years old. Fifth, and perhaps most important, I kept my eight-year-old American mouth firmly shut and they let me keep the damn rock.

Friday, October 06, 2006

Things I Learned This Week

  • From my sectionmates, I learned it's possible to freak out over an hour-long, ungraded midterm.
  • From the Canadian Broadcasting Corporation, I learned that most people still don't understand what "Every Breath You Take" by the Police is about.
  • From Federal Circuit Judge Randall R. Rader, I learned that his Irish Foxhound will eat just about anything you throw at it.
  • From my Legal Research and Writing Professor, I learned you should never plan to spend your breaks any place where you can't access Westlaw.
  • From Dahlia Lithwick, I learned that she's a writer instead of a speaker because she can't put four words together without sticking "uhh" between them twice.
  • From Virginia Delegate Robert G. Marshall, I learned that gay people can't maintain committed relationships and that they support pedophilia.
  • From two Virginia undergrads, I learned how to stage a very small-scale and ineffective protest.
  • From the Cavalier Daily, I learned how to use careful camera angles and irresponsible reporting to misrepresent a small-scale and ineffective protest as neither of those things.
  • From a British Columbian visitor who found this site by searching, I learned that my second post ever is the ninth result for the Google query "sex with unicorns."

Monday, October 02, 2006


From: Fletcher Reede
To: Professor CivPro
Date: Oct 2, 2006 12:56 PM
Subject: Incoherence

Dear Professor CivPro,

In spite of fasting in observance of Yom Kippur, I will be attending Civil Procedure this afternoon, because today's reading is incomprehensible. Given that, I would love to be called on to explain to the class the meaning of a sentence like "Moreover, contrary to plaintiff's belief, a third-party defendant need not be 'necessarily liable over' to the third-party plaintiff in the event the third-party plaintiff is found liable toward the plaintiff." I'm sure my semi-delirious, hunger-induced ramblings about impleaders, interpleaders, and pineapple eaters will be very enlightening. Please make sure I'm on the cold-call list so as not to miss this fantastic opportunity.

Fletcher Reede

Friday, September 29, 2006

Your Secret Society Has an E-Mail Address

The University of Virginia has a lot of secret societies. Some seem to take themselves very seriously, while others not so much. (Witness the guy at a party last night loudly telling strangers about his society and the position he held in it, putting air quotes around the name of the position.)

One easy way to not be taken seriously is, apparently, to be the 21 Society. Today, a beige plastic box appeared in the law school courtyard. On it are the mailbox numbers 21 and a laminated piece of paper, which states,

Friendship is precious, not only in the shade, but in the sunshine of life.
--Thomas Jefferson
The items in this box are for the free use of anyone who wishes to enjoy this space in the company of others. All items are for use in this Quad only, and each person who borrows from this box is on His or Her Honor to return the items immediately after use.

We Remain, |||| |||| |||| |||| |
The 21 Society

This box and the items inside are maintained by The 21 Society. Report any missing or damaged items to The21Society@virginia.edu.
The box contains two frisbees, a soccer ball, and a football, which you are on your capital-H Honor to return. The box itself is padlocked to a lamppost with a heavy chain.

Monday, September 25, 2006

My Humps, My Humps

My deadly viral mumps.

What is going on with this school? Two weeks ago, it was meningitis, now this. Did I move to the South in America, or did I move to South America? Keep an eye on the news in October, because I'm starting a pool on which highly infectious third-world disease crops up here next. My money's on Ebola.
Winner gets a free trip to Atlanta, courtesy of the federal government.

Friday, September 22, 2006

Headline Spotted on Google News

China's official news agency seems to be a bit confused between Neil Armstrong's "one giant leap for mankind" and Mao Zedong's "Great Leap Forward."
I guess it's an easy mistake, although as far as I know Armstrong wasn't responsible for the famine deaths of 20 to 40 million people.

Thursday, September 21, 2006

How to Get Cold-Called, Part II

Advanced Method:

  1. Show up to class at the last second before it starts, so you're setting up your laptop while the professor has already begun talking.
  2. Spend several minutes trying to figure out why your wireless connection is flaking out.
  3. While restarting computer to finish fixing the wireless, notice dust buildup around the touchpad's mouse buttons.
  4. Reach down to slide the tag on your laptop power cable up high enough so you can use it to get the dust out.
  5. Get the dust out.
Around this point, the professor should say something along the lines of, "So once the court says this, Fletcher, what would you want to do if you were the plaintiff's lawyer, based on what I just said?"

Having an answer is optional.

Monday, September 18, 2006

I can't stands no more

Attention hack reporters: We know Popeye eats spinach. Mentioning Popeye in your articles about spinach tainted with E. coli is not clever. You are not clever. Stop it.

Saturday, September 16, 2006

The Novelist

Questions I had for John Grisham on Thursday after he spoke about The Innocent Man :

  • Why did Mitch get away with cheating on his wife?
  • What was the deal with The Brethren?
  • Do you know Rachel Weisz?
  • Did anyone at Doubleday read The Brethren before agreeing to publish it?
  • Do they start writing the scripts after you finish the books, or before?
  • Speaking of scripts, please defend Christmas with the Kranks. We'll wait.
  • Are you aware of the existence of The Brethren, a nomadic cult also known as "The Garbage Eaters?" If so, was that your inspiration?
  • I understand you've given this law school a lot of money. I've recently begun a similar practice, and before I continue I'm wondering if you've found it to be worthwhile.
  • Did you know it's okay for authors to skip a year?
  • Were you heavily medicated for the majority of 2000?
  • No, seriously. You wrote a book about three judges who orchestrate a mail fraud extortion scheme from prison until they accidentally catch the secretly gay senator who happens to be running a rigged campaign for President under the guidance of a puppet-master director of the CIA who is concerned about a fringe element of the Russian military in which they all get away with it at the end and no one called you out on it?
  • Have you had any substantial opposition on the new book from death penalty proponents?

Thursday, September 14, 2006

Cars fell on Virginia

This state has an obscene number of custom license plates. I don't mean vanity plates (although it has far more than its fair share of those); I mean actual types of plates. As in, over 180 of them.
Some highlights, if you don't feel like going through the whole list:

Monday, September 11, 2006

Ma nishtana ha-lawschool ha-zeh

Why is this law school different from all other law schools?

It's not the cherry wood lockers or the 51% alumni giving rate. It's not even the top law school newspaper in the country (really?).

No, it's one thing and one thing only that makes this place feel so right: two-ply toilet paper. You won't find that in New Haven.

Monday, September 04, 2006

The Non-Transitive Property of Crocodile Hunting

Rock, Paper, Scissors is archaic. I'm settling my next dispute with a best-of-three match of Crocodile, Steve Irwin, Stingray. The hand motions are easy, it makes more sense than "paper beats rock," and best of all, it's topical.
Remember, kids, crocodile beats stingray!

Saturday, September 02, 2006

How to Get Cold-Called

A simple, three-step guide:

  1. Begin doodling in your notes. Be careful to use simple, repetitive pen motions that look nothing like writing, even from a distance.
  2. Wait for the person in front of you to ask a question.
  3. Continue doodling while the professor answers the question.
For best results, maintain just the right balance between showing weakness and knowing what you're talking about. Properly executed, this can keep the professor's attention for up to twenty minutes.

Tuesday, August 29, 2006


Tonight's "Tournament of Champions" episode of Jeopardy had the following categories during Single Jeopardy:

  • Star Trek, Star Wars, or Lord of the Rings
  • Action Figures
  • Dinner for One
  • In Need of a Date
  • Still living with "Mom" and "Dad"
  • You Have No Life
Ordinarily, these might have been kind of amusing, but I feel like they probably struck a little close to home for these three contestants.

Sunday, August 27, 2006

Week 1

Things that have happened in the first week of law school:

  1. I missed my section's library orientation because I was reading for contracts / playing N.
  2. During a peer advisor's don't-feel-bad-if-you-lose speech before section elections, I cheerfully pointed out that "four of these [five] people running are going to lose."
  3. My bike was stolen the day before I planned to go out and buy a better lock for it.
  4. I missed my research group's first meeting in the library because I missed when we planned on having it. On the bright side, I would have been of little use, having missed the orientation.
  5. I successfully paid so little attention in contracts that I didn't even get the relevant jokes being IMed to me.
  6. I had a full 250GB hard drive die with absolutely no warning.
  7. I waited a very long time for a sandwich.
I also, however, got a card for a free sandwich because that one took so long. So all in all, law school is pretty sweet.

As a side note, Texas finally sent me a survey asking why I chose not to accept admission, the first conclusive proof that they are actually aware that I will not be attending. Now if only they hadn't already sold my contact information to every provider of student services in the greater Austin area.

Friday, August 18, 2006

Cops in a Theater

Sign you're in a pretty safe town: when the manager of the four-screen theater you're watching Snakes on a Plane in calls the police to handle rowdy patrons, they send five or more officers.

That's correct, at the 7:30PM showing this evening at the Regal Seminole, the manager stopped the movie right as Kenan "Good Burger" Thompson took the stick so he could yell at the audience for helping to make a mockery of the movie even Samuel L. Jackson isn't taking seriously. I guess he was worried about a riot, because he brought five cops with him to ask a few people to leave.

So we sat and watched ads for about 10 minutes as the manager and the one guy who felt like speaking up bickered back and forth, then stared each other down until the guy and all his friends got up and left.

At that point the manager reminded the rest of audience that "All you college kids need to remember there are other people in here and they want to see the movie too." Then he left, feeling quite proud of himself and apparently pretending that the six people who were removed had been responsible for a full theater's worth of clapping, cheering, and yelling.

The rest of the movie finished without incident, although there was a marked change in the atmosphere after that. Until, of course, the final scene. No amount of police presence could take away the power of that scene. The Tank Man would have remained in place to witness that scene in all its glory.

Sunday, July 23, 2006

Miss Universe

The silliest part of the Miss Universe pageant is the National Costume section at the very beginning. They always have the girls in these hyper-exaggerated versions of their sterotypical cultural garb, but for outright silliness, there's no competing with the American version this year. I understand these aren't supposed to be representative of how people actually dress, but come on now. Is this country really best exemplified by a pseudo-dominatrix equestrian in violation of the US Flag Code, 4 U.S.C. §8(d)?

Even if it is, the pom-pom takes it too far.

Tuesday, July 11, 2006

Methods of contact undertaken by the other two schools that accepted me

Immediately upon acceptance
Georgetown University Law Center: Envelope containing standard congratulatory letter, small handwritten note at bottom.
University of Texas School of Law: Envelope containing standard congratulatory letter, postmark on outside stating "State of Texas, Official Business, Penalty for Private Use, WE'RE TEXAS." Leaves me unsure if last part is pride or a threat.

Winner: GULC, personal note is a nice touch and I don't need to be threatened by envelopes.

Week or so after acceptance
GULC: Letter encouraging me to attend. Packet with information about enrollment. Huge three-ring binder with approximately one sentence per page, addressing housing, student groups, and professors. Also contains keychain, CD, and about 50 sheets of notebook paper reading "Georgetown Law" down the side, apparently so the kid who sits behind me and to the left in class can know how important I am. Combined postage cost: over $9.00
UT Law: Letter granting me a substantial reduction in cost.

Winner: UT, money for school > money on postage.

Days before deposit deadline
GULC: Several e-mails reminding me of the upcoming deadline, including one giving 24 hours warning. Politely informs me there's no need to reply if I do not plan to attend.
UT Law: None.

Winner: UT, for trusting that I know what day it is.

Days after deposit deadline
GULC: Panicky e-mail that I should call immediately if I forgot to mail in deposit. Polite "farewell" to those of us who voluntarily chose not to mail in said deposit.
UT Law: Brusque e-mail that "confirms that our offer of admission has been rescinded and your place in the entering class cancelled." Signed "Respectully," the assistant dean of admissions.

Winner: GULC, for giving me a chance in case I didn't know what day it was.

Weeks later
GULC: Single follow-up e-mail with link to survey asking what it would have taken for me to choose GULC. Provided a chance for me to point out that an estimated $57,600/year total cost necessitates the offering of some scholarship money.
UT Law: Over a dozen (at last count) mailings to my home address completely ignoring the cancellation of my admission, informing this "future Longhorn" about all kinds of options for housing, meal plans, loans, and healthcare. At this point, I expect them to mail me a J.D. in three years in spite of no further contact on my behalf.

Winner: Tie, for reminding me in their own ways why I chose otherwise.

Monday, June 19, 2006

Items for sale in the impulse-buy section next to the register in the Walgreen's near my house

  • Sugarless Gum

  • Regular Gum

  • Several magazines about Britney Spears

  • Nicorette Gum

  • Breath Mints

  • Soap Opera Digest

  • First Response Pregnancy Test

Saturday, June 10, 2006

Follow the Finger

The new Butterfinger ad campaign is a little too prostate exam-y for me. Completely ignoring the overt innuendo in the "play with our monkey" game, I just think the whole thing adds a weird overtone to "Nobody better lay a finger on my Butterfinger."

I can never watch Homer chase Bart around again.

Saturday, June 03, 2006

The Unicorns Next Door

Just watched The Girl Next Door. It was decent, but I think I liked it better when it was called Risky Business. A lot more nudity this time around. So I got to wondering, maybe this movie could start a trend of remaking old Tom Cruise movies with added nudity and a new, "hip" soundtrack.

Just think of the possibilities: They could redo The Color of Money with that Paul Newman sex scene everyone wanted to see the first time around. Old Paul's still kicking; I'm sure he'd love to take a break from making salad dressing to nail some girl in a high school library. Then there's Legend. You've got sex with elves, you've got sex with unicorns, you've got sex with elves, the unicorns, and the princess, and through it all, Kanye West's "Gold Digger" so you know how cool everyone is. Finally, my personal favorite, Born on the Fourth of July, because Hollywood just hasn't filmed enough wheelchair sex.

If Tom Cruise isn't going to make good movies anymore, I think this is the only option. And if they run out of older Cruise movies, I get enough e-mails about "Hot Young Asians" in a week to recast The Last Samurai.

Tuesday, May 30, 2006


I think I'll skip the standard "I'm starting a blog" post and jump right in. If you can't tell this is the start of a blog, then I don't want you reading my blog.

I'll be starting law school in the fall, and I've been thinking about how that's going to work out, so I went back to the early days of Buffalo Wings & Vodka to see how he went about it. At about this point in his law school career he said

When I was in high school there was this guy in my English class that I would have sworn was retarded but then I was working on some calculus in there one day and he looked over my shoulder and reexplained the chain rule to me and I realized that the whole retarded thing was just a facade that helped him get chicks and avoid being called on. I would very much like to be the law school version of that guy.
That sounds like a decent philosophy to me, so I'm going to stick with something along those lines. He did a pretty good job, from what I can tell, and I think I can do it too.

I realize, of course, that this opens me up to all kinds of people coming here and saying "I served with Buffalo Wings & Vodka, I knew Buffalo Wings & Vodka, Buffalo Wings & Vodka was a friend of mine. You're no Buffalo Wings & Vodka." Well to you I say, "That was really uncalled for, Senator." Then you can say, "You're the one who was making the comparison," then go on to lose the election and die 18 years later. So I win and get off my case about it.