Thursday, January 29, 2009

Lapse in Fashion

Sorry for the lack of posting this week--it's been very cold and icy, and I didn't even leave the apartment on Wednesday (which, frankly, was glorious).

In addition, our legal writing professors are assigning, once again, papers that aren't for a grade but that still take an annoying amount of effort, and I've been trying to knock them out early so I can watch 12 hours of America's Next Top Model on Sunday.

But I did...suspense a two-week tour of Paris, Rome, and London, with my best friend, leaving in June! That's really not long enough in each city I suppose, but my finances allow me only a taste and I can go back and explore them further another time.

I'm kind of delirious since booking it, thinking of all the things I'll see...Notre Dame, Versailles, the Sistine Chapel, Pompeii, Westminster Abbey...and I'm also (perhaps overly) excited that I will finally see a John Williams Waterhouse painting. He's my favorite painter, and so I can't wait to get to the Tate and finally see one of his works!

Of course I could stay forever in England, as they have "Victorian Literature" tours where you can travel the country and see Jane Austen's houses and haunts, and the Haworth parsonage, etc., but I think that might be something I do on my own one day.

The Soul of the Rose, 1908

Sunday, January 25, 2009

Dean's List

Yay, I made Dean's List! Here is a re-enactment of my reaction.

That being said, here are the lessons I have learned thus far from law school.
1. Law school is like high school. People told me this, and I didn't want to believe them. But it's true. Gossip is rampant. There's actually a group of girls who talk about who does and doesn't wash their hands after they pee. The law is obviously pretty boring if people can't find anything more interesting than that to discuss. Also, if you drive to class with someone of the opposite sex, you are sleeping with them. OMG.
2. Writing your exams in the style and format the professor wants can be just as important as having a true grasp of the material. For finals, I primarily studied old tests and how students who got As worded their arguments and made their points. I didn't fall much below my friend who studied 24/7 and has a truly daunting understanding of everything we covered.
3. Don't sit by the same person in every class. For one thing, you can meet more people by varying your seat. For another, the person you sit by might start to annoy you mid-semester...and you are stuck. All. Year.
4. Take the word "mandatory" in front of "meeting" with a grain of salt. The career counselors say all the meetings are required. They don't take attendance. They won't know if you're there or not, and for the most part you don't need to be.
5. Most importantly, if you're lost and don't know what to do with your life, don't go. Several of my friends (and myself) came to law school because our undergrad degrees were useless and we didn't know what else to do. However, unless you have true dedication and drive to be a lawyer, the willpower needed to make yourself study and deal with all the pessimism they feed you is immense (the profs talk about malpractice and how we are not going to find jobs almost every day. Very uplifting). Your peers are arrogant, your professors are disparaging, and the reward for getting through it are endless 80-hour work weeks. I enjoy learning for its own sake, and I've made some good friends, but if I had it to do over again I probably would choose a different path.
(The above list does not imply I'm miserable. And of course I might like being a lawyer. Mistakes can always work out if you try to move them in a positive direction, and luckily I have great parents and friends, as well as my ridiculously cute chihuahua, to make it through. But if you have Googled "should I go to law school" and stumbled upon this--the answer is NO.)
Outfit: Does this dress look familiar? Ha, I bought it in two colors. Express. Tights: Francesca's. Shoes: Liz Claiborne. Necklace: Francesca's. Cami: Express.

Saturday, January 24, 2009

Helping Hands

Me: "Oh, come on. When we lived together you never helped me clean."

Zach: "Well, I always rinsed my plate before I put it in the sink."

Luckily for him, I was in a mood where this exchange made me laugh.

Outfit: Dress: United Colors of Benetton; Tights: Target; Boots: Rocket Dog; Belt: Nordstrom BP; Bracelet: Forever 21 (and there's my star dress on the floor...that would make my mother so sad. Hang up your clothes! she says)

Friday, January 23, 2009

That's How I Knew This Story Would Break My Heart

(The title is from an Aimee Mann song. I love her.)

Tonight, as part of our Oscar Extravaganza, we went and saw The Wrestler. When it started, I wasn't sure I could care about the main character, Randy--wrestling is hokey, and Mickey Rourke frankly looks a mess, and how many times do I need to see a stripper/hooker with a heart of gold?
But when it was over, I sat in the car and cried--the woman behind me didn't wait. She was sobbing quietly as the screen went black. Randy was so human--and so broken and fragile and stubbornly strong, just as absurd in his sequined spandex leggings as he was hulking behind the meat counter at the grocery store, serving up potato salad.

I wanted so badly for Pam to love him, and for his daughter to love him, and for him to love himself, and I think something broke inside me, a little, when it was over. I haven't been affected (effected? some English major I am) by a movie like that in a long time. When I saw Revolutionary Road last week, I felt like Leonardo DeCaprio was acting his suspenders off, and that the center of the movie was hollow and hopeless, and yes, Kate Winslet, I know; you are quite good at screaming and crying. Slumdog Millionaire I liked much better, but still--a little slick, not characters I felt for. I was moved by the depiction of crushing poverty and casual cruelty, but the leads and their fate--meh.

But Randy just seemed so real, so aching yet hopeful, so degraded while holding onto his dignity, and the point of this is that it's definitely worth seeing, and I hope Mickey Rourke wins his Oscar.

(Although be forewarned and prepared to flinch--there's some heavy casual wrestling violence in this, involving staple guns and barbed wire.)

Outfit: Dress: Ebay; Tights: Target; Shoes: Naturalizer; Vest: Macy's.

Wednesday, January 21, 2009

Dear Legal Writing Professor

You are crushing my soul. Why do we have an assignment due every single class, none of which are for a grade--yet if we don't turn one in, we fail the class? This is not logical.

Perhaps you noticed that on the last assignment I made up answers and cited random statutes and cases instead of doing new research. In the real world I believe this is called "malpractice," so thanks for getting me off to such an ethical start.

However, as I have five other classes that are more interesting, useful, and relevant to my GPA and thus my career prospects, I am sure you understand.
Also, I heard eyebrows are really coming back in this year. Please take note.

Best regards,
Outfit: Dress: NY & Co; Shirt: NY & Co; Patterned tights: Target; Boots: Bandolino

Monday, January 19, 2009

Winter Waiting

I guess the wait-game is I'm waiting to hear what class percentile I'm in! I'll be pleased, however, to go class tomorrow and see who's happy and who's grim about their grades. Is it wrong to hope that the smug, boastful people have frowns on their faces? That the quiet and friendly have prevailed? That doesn't really seem in accord with my New Year's "work in progress" resolution, but one can't expect miracles, I suppose.

In other news, it's warm here again, which is good, as using the heater and the dryer at the same time flips my breaker and leaves me in the dark. I needed to wash some towels, so the front came in at just the right time.

Oh, and I saw Slumdog Millionaire and Revolutionary Road this weekend...both good, but neither were movies I would see again with any enthusiasm. Revolutionary Road especially was deeply depressing and soulless. Watching two hours of desperately unhappy people realizing how trapped they are in suburban mediocrity, and how they turn on each other, made me rethink and envision a Ms. Havisham-type future without shuddering.

Outfit: Dress: Spain; Cami: JCPenney; Tights: Target; Boots: Rocket Dog; Earrings: Express. Please, someone scold me into accessorizing!

Friday, January 16, 2009

Hahahaa Victory

I'll post my outfit later...right now I am frantically refreshing the grades page while I wait for CrimLaw...BUT...

I made an A, an A-, two B+s, and a B!! While the Bs are a little disheartening and previously foreign to my overachieving little self, it's still good enough to be in at least the top 1/4 of the class, if the numbers from past years are anything to go by. So...wooooo!

Hopefully this last grade will be good and bump me on up...fingers crossed.

(But to point out that law grades are completely arbitrary: I made the A in the class I skipped all the time, and a B in a class I never missed in and thought my paper was very good. Go figure.)

UPDATE: I made an A- in criminal law! The last year's top ten percent at the end of the year at at least a if it is the same I could be in it! Which would mean so much...there's the possibility of not only a job this summer, but perhaps one that pays. Out to a fabulous dinner!

Thursday, January 15, 2009

Cruel, Cruel

Oh, oh, our professors told us we would have our grades by the end of the day and...they are vile liars.

You might wonder, "Why is that so important? Who cares if you have to wait?" Well, law exams are a whole different game than undergrad exams. You only have one grade--the final--which determines your rank in class, which determines which jobs you can interview for, which determines whether you will get out and pay your loans off in a few years while still enjoying a fairly high quality of life or whether you will get out and have to eat Ramen and sell your eggs to even pay the rent.

The level of competition is high, and people are generally unwilling to admit they might have done poorly. Of COURSE they aced it, they declare smugly, twirling their mustaches and patting their contracts book with smug confidence.

Obviously, however, we cannot all make As--but I suppose aspiring lawyers never had to be good at statistics.

(Although I have been looking at positions with the FBI lately, and honestly that excites me a lot more than the hallowed halls of the law. Better watch out, cannibals! I'm coming for you.)

Hmm...those yellow tights are quite bright indeed. They look more mustardy in person.

Outfit: Shirt and dress: Anthro; Tights: Macys; Boots: Nine West

Tuesday, January 13, 2009

A Very Merry Unshop Day To Me

As a sign of my dedication to frugality, as well as my wish to avoid getting a job, I'm returning everything I can find with a tag on it. While this might seem excessive, I figure if I've had it since before Christmas and haven't worn it, I must not love it enough to keep it. I'm ashamed to say that so far I've returned over $400 worth of stuff and have a few more stores to hit.

In other news, I still don't have my grades for the first semester and it is very hard to work up the motivation to do anything without them. We're supposed to get them sometime before the first of this point I feel like I did horribly and should probably join the Peace Corps and move to Ukraine.

However, be prepared for a post in the near future that's either grim and cloudy or filled with birdsong and joy, depending on how I did.

Outfit: Turtleneck: Banana Republic Outlet; Dress: MNG; Tights: Target; Boots: Nine West; Necklace: Anthro

Thursday, January 8, 2009

Bad Choices

Starting this semester off right, I chose to have margaritas and enchiladas rather than packing for this weekend's wedding, doing my property reading, or studying for my test on Tuesday. Since I haven't had a drink in--oh--forever, they were a bit more potent than I expected and induced a stellar rendition of "Secret Agent Girl" in the car. (I was not driving, don't worry!)

Get excited for some rockin' bridesmaid pics....

Also, it is very hard to do Pilates with a chihuahua in your lap...I should have bought the "Mommy and Me Yoga" video. "You're on the floor? Why are you on the floor? I will bite you yeaarrghh!"

Outfit: Cardi: NY&Co; Dress: Anthro; Tights: Macys; Shoes: Liz Claiborne via Outlet

Tuesday, January 6, 2009

Fringe Benefits

Too bad Glamour said fringe was out, because I'm still loving it!

In other news, I'm back after having a good holiday! School starts Thursday, and while I still feel burned out, I'm sure things will be fine. I won't see my grades till February (after tuition is nonrefundable--law school is a cut-throat, money-grubbing business, not a bastion of academic thought and growth as they would have you believe), but by then I might not even care.

I didn't really make resolutions for New Year's--rather, these are, in the words of one of my friends, "works in progress" that I always struggle to do.
But, this year I want to...
1. Be healthier. Last semester I did well, but I want to exercise at least one more day a work and eat out only twice a week.

2. Love more people unconditionally. I tend to pick people apart in my head. There are very few people I just accept, as a whole, for who they are, without wishing they would change in some way. And that's sad. I should be nicer.

3. Spend less. After today, hitting both the Go International Thakoon line at Target and the 1/2 off Lucky sale, I am not buying anything until March 1 unless I have a gift card. I have enough debt already from law school, and I'm booking a trip to Europe at the end of the month. So, blog friends, please hold me accountable and scold when necessary.

4. Enjoying "now" more. This means being glad that school means I can keep a crazy schedule and have hours and hours of free time. Not feeling pressured to get married, or have a baby, or buy a house, or the things my friends who already graduated and got jobs are doing. And, most importantly, keeping away from my law school peers' toxic opinions about absolutely everything they know nothing about. "What, you use Dove to wash your dishes? God, you're going to fail. You need to use Palmolive to get an A."

We'll see how many of those I keep.

I hope everyone had a great holiday, and I'm looking forward to catching up on everyone's blogs over the next few days! You keep me awake in Civil Procedure. Ha!

Outfit: Boots: Gianni Bini; Jeans: 7 for all Mankind; Cami: Ann Taylor Factor; Sweater: Nordstrom BP