Tuesday, September 17, 2013

§2. 28 (Okay, 23) Days Later

There are a number of similarities between the the first few weeks of law school and eking out existence in a post-apocalyptic Hellscape. Among them:

1. Food
Now that I am truly, madly, deeply in debt, the need to find and secure sources of free food has become more pressing. This is a skill I honed to a lethal degree in Kyrgyzstan, frantically jamming Otis Spunkmeyer muffins and boxes of soy milk into a backpack; one never knew where one's next (non-ovine) meal might come from. In law school, clubs and informational sessions provide the most bounteous harvests. The other night I learned about judicial clerkship, and how it can better my practice of the law and job prospects. I also learned that you can only eat about ten chicken wontons with Chinese pesto sauce before people start to stare. As in any good dystopia, I know this windfall cannot last. Once the call-outs are over, I'll have to scavenge ever farther afield for free food, or else resign myself to crying into my ramen for flavor.

2. Trust
When civilization breaks down we return to our natural, selfish states, and it takes time to rebuild the edifice on which our highest social aspirations were founded. So too in law school, where behind toothy grins and budding friendships lies the understanding that we are competing with each other, and whoever does best determines the curve for the rest. As much as we are all going through this experience together, we can't all finish in the top 10% of the class (in fact I've heard it can be as few as 10%), or go on to the types of careers people mean when they make lawyer jokes.

3. Sleep
Law students don't count sheep to fall asleep; we consider the rights of a true owner to replevy such chattels as against an adverse possessor. Or something. I mean, not really, but there is a lot of reading. This is an easy one.

If you'd like to extend this metaphor further, please do so in the comments below. I've run out of both steam and time to avoid Constitutional Law.

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