Breakin Ankles

Wednesday, August 31, 2005

High School High

My International Law escapade - Nerd on the Run: This time it's personal.

So I had this one class where every week a certain group of students were required to write a short 1 page response paper regarding the weeks reading. Now, first things first, let me say that the class was a 2 hour a week waste of time. Actually, I enjoyed it as I spent a full 2 hours writing notes back and forth between me and the 2 people that sat beside me, one of which was the infamous Gold Nugget. In any event, I had a busy weekend prior to when my response paper was due. Also, I did not remember that my week was coming up until a day before my paper was due. I guess I'll blame that one on the fact that I had yet to print out the syllabus from the class -- im such a rebel.

So the day of the class rolls around and I figure it's not such a big deal. Right before the break in the class (it's 2 hours so we get a break in the middle) the Professor calls me out and says he'd like to speak to me during the break. A fellow student a few seats down yells out 'busted!', while some students to my right, seemingly in unison and well rehearsed and choreographed chanted "someone's in trouble, someone's in trouble". Just some friendly jeers I thought, still assuming that I was in the clear.

So I go and speak to the professor, he is clearly irritated and seems to be taking it as an insult that I didn't write the paper. I mention to him that I was under the impression that my week was the next weeks readings (looks like im learning to lie like lawyers do already, eh?) He is surprised and pulls out the syllabus which clearly states in bold big font everyone's assigned dates for the papers. "How could it have been any more clearer?" I mention something along the lines of "I'm sorry, I was going by another system." 'Another System'??!!!! What the hell does that mean? Ha ha, not I, but I said it.. I think it actually threw him off and confused him. Back to the story. He then goes "Alright, u can do the paper for next weeks readings" (I'm in the clear!!... or am i?)

He then asks me "But you did do the readings, right?" "Sure! I did, I just didn't realize it was my week to write a response paper" (sounds of impending doom and danger are now playing in the background) "Great, I'll call on you then" (eeeep).

So we have 5 mins left before the break is over and I'm contemplating what to do! Do I try to do the reading before class? Lemme investigate. Again, I have no syllabus (lord have mercy!) so I ask someone real quick to check theirs out - 30 some pages of reading assigned. I try to tell myself that I will put my hyped up reading skills to the test and see if I can skim the hell out of this mofo of an assignment in 5-15 mins. (we had a guest lecturer the first half who was running behind.. so she still had a few more points to make before my professor would take over) Hmm.. 2 seconds into the first sentence and I'm like "screw this." There was no way I was even gonna attempt to read this stuff... Too much pressure, too much reading, too risky, and of course, I'm too lazy :-)

I ask some classmates for some advice. No one has any ideas. Do you? Let's see if you can figure out my maneuver, I thought it was pretty clever, and very High School - esque (Hence the name of the post). So I come up with a plan, and the plan is this: I stick around for the second part of the break, but only for a bit before I conveniently have to go to the bathroom. I leave all my stuff in my seat, my book wide open, notebook out, pens out etc. To the naked eye, I'm out for a quick break. To the keen observer, I am now guilty of fleeing the scene of a crime. Prior to the end of the break, I tell G. Nugget I am just going to leave and never come back. I'll leave my stuff and ask him to just pick it up for me when class is over and meet me somewhere in the lawschool after class is done. He agrees. It's on. 15 minutes into the second half of the class, I make a break for it. I look straight ahead, think of a warm beach and the pacific ocean where I hope to work on a boat (Oh wait, that was Shawshank Redemption). In reality, I walk out quickly and quietly, nervous as hell. I'm out the door! "Celebrate good times come on!" I go down and see some friends, tell them my ordeal, seems to be a good story all around. So I just hang out and enjoy life for the next 45 minutes or so, though I must mention that I still had some lingering feelings of worry and stress for some reason. So class eventually ends and my friends hands me my bag. Turns out the professor calls on me and mentioned "oh it looks that 'so and so' hasn't returned yet'. I survived. Afterwards, a few people approached me and were like "bold move." Sometimes you gotta do what you gotta do. I guess, in hindsight, what I gotta do is print out the damn syllabus and do my work! Oh well, I have no regrets.. was a fun experience and makes for a story.

Socratic Method

As Labor Day approaches, thousands of students will enter a funny high-school-esque world otherwise known as "Law School". As an incoming 1L, one of the biggest fears is being called on in class and getting grilled in front of your classmates, confidant's, and lovers. My experiences with respect to getting called are quite charmed; so without further adieu, here is a rundown of ALL of the times I got called on in class during my 3 year law school career and got fucked. Some will make you laugh, others will make you cry. Others will make you feel as if you just lost your puppy. Enjoy.

1L Year
Contracts: Here we go. Finally, a story to tell. It was during the first month of law school when this story takes place. I had contracts from 3:30-4:30 everyday. On the day in question, I hadn't done the assigned reading, and moreover, I got to school a tad late since I had to wait for the cable guy to finish setting my shit up. I get to school at 3:35 and see Gold Nugget, who I happened to sit next to for that class. I tell him that we should just skip since I didn't do the reading and didn't want to get called on. He's like "whatever dude, he won't call on you'. I say "I don't know if I want to risk it, I haven't done the reading at all so I can't even B.S my way out of it" The Gold Nugget says "Just go to class, you won't get called on, trust me".

Word to the wise: Whenever the Gold Nugget says "Trust me", don't. So anywhoo, per the Nugget's suggestion, I decide to go to class. 5 minutes in I hear the professor go "Homer....". Eeep. What the fuck do I say?! I mention that I'm not prepared to answer any questions about the assigned
case, so the Prof. goes on to someone else. Turns out it was no big deal. He asked a question, I couldn't answer it, life goes on, and my cable got hooked up. I got called on again later in the semester, and was able to answer it. Holla back.

2L Year
Con Law 2: Oddly enough, the Gold Nugget re-appears as a villain in this little story. Long story short, during a class about freedom of speech, the teacher goes into some really long hypothetical. I stop paying attention and start writing notes to the 2 peeps next to me. The hypothetical was pretty long and drawn out as I was able to write a few notes while the Prof. kept talking. Right as I was finishing up a note to Gold Nugget (something about a video game, or vids as some like to call it), she calls on me. "Homer, how would you handle a question like that?"

My brain is thinking "A hypothetical like what? Oh great, gotta think of an excuse, I don't even know what this Prof. has been talking about for the last 5 mins!" Since the hypothetical was so long, it's not like I could have asked her to repeat it. I had to bite the bullet. I tell her "Oh, I was busy reading the assignment for today's class so I didn't hear the question, sorry." How dumb is that?! It was as if I was trying to act all noble and the only reason I didn't hear the question was because I was busy reading some con law material. Heaven forbid it was because I was goofing off. Now that is rich! On to the next story.

International Law: This baby deserves a post of its own!! Read the previous post below to get the scoop.

Tax 1: I get called on and I'm not even in class to come up with an excuse. I either slept in or was hung over. Probably both. Farger.

Trusts and Estates: This class had a seating chart, but somehow I ended up sitting in a seat that wasn't mine. One day the Professor decides to call on someone. He looks at the seating chart and goes "Mr. Palal, do you think this is a will or a trust?" I go "Oh, I'm not Mr. Palal, I'm actually in the wrong seat today". The professor, being a charming fellow, goes "haha, no problem, so let me ask you anyways, is this a will or a trust?" You can't get an easier question than this in TNE. It's akin to asking someone "Is this math problem an addition or subtraction problem". But, there's a problem. I was busy chatting with the person next to me and didn't hear the question. I mention that I'm not sure and off he went to call on someone else. Str8 Pimpin.

3L Year
Taxation of Real Estate Transactions: The Rican guest stars in this story. I do the reading for class and am all ready to answer the assigned questions. There were a few, though, that I just couldn't figure out. The Prof. calls on me. Some questions I answer fine,
but then he gets to the ones I had trouble with and asks me what I think. I'm blanking, so the Rican whispers an answer to me. I tell the teacher what the Rican just whispered to me and the Prof goes "No, that's incorrect, turns out that this question doesn't really have an answer". Blast! I was tricked by a trick question! What are the odds?!

A class that shall remain nameless: In this story I wasn't so much called on as I was called out. The Gold Nugget guest star's, once more, as a villain. I think I'm starting to notice a pattern? Aywhoo, I sat next to Gold Nugget for this class and we spent a lot of time goofing off and laughing in class. Not a smart move since we sat right in front of the teacher, a few rows back.

One day, the prof. decided that she had had enough of our antics and she goes,'What's so funny back there guys? I see you 2 laughing, so if something is so funny, maybe you'd like to share it with the class??"

I say "Sorry" and think that the saga is over. Dead wrong.

She goes "No, what's on that laptop back there?" The Gold Nugget goes "Nothing, just my notes". The teacher goes "Is that right? Then what's so funny?"

Then, the Gold Nugget grew a pair of balls and goes to the teacher in a very confrontational tone "If you don't believe me, you can come back here and check". I can't convey the tone of the statement via text, but trust me, he might as well have said something like "Make your move bitch, let's see what you got". Naturally, the prof. responds with "Oh, that's okay, I believe you." Hmm... maybe we're homefree now. Wrong again!

Then the teacher starts ripping into us: "We're talking about serious stuff here, about prison, about peoples lives, and you 2 are in the back of the class everyday laughing like a bunch of idiots!!" Whoa!! This is insane. I didn't know how to react, so I just sat there with a smug grin on my face, which probably only made her more mad. She kept on going on and on about how the lawschool was looking into canceling wireless in the classrooms precisely because of people like us. Then she goes to me "Maybe if you can't control yourself from looking at your friend's computer, you should come up to the front of the class and have a seat right next to me. I mean, if you can't control yourself, then I can't control myself!!"

She goes on for a bit more then turns around and goes back to the blackboard. But the fire is burning to bright and she turns right back around and continues ".... and another thing...." THen she talks about how we're disrupting the other students etc. - which is funny in hindsight because a few people, including people that sat right next to me and the Nugget, came up and asked "What did you 2 even do?" It was def. a crazy experience. I felt like I was back in 5th grade or something. The scolding went on for at least a good FOUR minutes. No exaggeration.

I forgot to mention a funny tidbit. As the teacher was asking "WHat is on your computer?", Gold Nugget was deviously closing all the browser windows on his computer as he retorted "Nothing". Classic. Another little tidbit: Prior to getting called out, I was planning on skipping the next day of class, but after getting yelled at, I had to show up and make an appearance to show that I wasn't afraid or intimidated. HaHa. One last tidbit: During the next class, the Professor made a joke and the class started laughing. The Gold Nugget turned to me and said,"Are we allowed to laugh now?".

So there you have it my friends. A brief run down, sort of, of my experiences with the Socratic method. Don't think I'm all slacker though, as there were plenty of times where I was called on and handled my bizness, but those stories aren't too exciting.

So some unsolicited advice for all you 1L's out there: Don't sweat it. Not knowing an answer to a question is no big deal and no one will give a fuck if you say "I don't know". School is school, and law school shouldn't be any more intimidating than high school was. People get intimidated, though, because of all the hype surrounding law school and evil teachers who grill students to the max, yo. Just relax, and worst come to worst, if you don't know the answer to a question, you may have blog material to write about 3 years later :-) Good luck fargers.

P.S I always thought it was funny when someone was called on and they didn't know the answer and they go "Can I take a pass please?" hahahha 'can i take a pass?' - how formal and strange!! Peeps would be better off if they just took Chris Rock's advice and said "Sheeeiit, I don't know that shit... I'm keeping it reeeeall!!". Keeping it real indeed.

Friday, August 19, 2005

Long story short, there's shit on my face

I met some person in my apt. complex the other day, only to find out later that I had a huge blotch of mustard on my face from a sandwich I had eaten earlier. This blotch was so big that if I was walkin down the street, cars would slow down thinking a yellow light was up ahead.

A few weeks ago I was walking back to my apartment and the resident manager of my building happened to be walking out as I was walking in. I gave him a head nod, but instead of getting one back like usual, I could have sworn that he was straight up laughing at me. When I got into my apartment, I understood what was going on. I noticed that I had a significant blotch of tartar sauce on the side of my lip from a sandwich I had just eaten. Maybe I should just stop eating sandwiches. Or, if I may think outside of the box for a moment, maybe I should just start wiping my face after eating??

Ever notice that when people say "Long story short" it really means that they're going to keep talking for a long time? Whenever I say "long story short", I always end up talking for at least another 20 mins. I suppose that "long story short" really means "Hey, I have a long story to tell, I'll try to shorten it up a bit, but beware, it's still going to be a long ass story."

What's my name?

For the first time in 8 years, I find myself living outside of a college town. Since I have no college gym to go exercise at, I figured I might as well look into joining a gym. As a sidenote, I must say that when the dude at the gym was giving me a tour of the place, I felt like some chump ass yuppie -- perhaps a topic for another post.

Anywhoo, this dude is showing me around the gym and he keeps mispronouncing my name. No big deal, though, as my name isn't exactly one you hear everyday and people have been saying it wrong ever since I was a wee lad. After getting my name wrong for the billionth time, the dude says to me "Hey, I'm really sorry about getting your name wrong. I'm really bad with names and I feel awful because I always hate when people mispronounce my name." I looked at his name tag expecting to see something weird like "Zimbabwe" or "Shii`ncey~goo". But no - his name was as simple as they come. His nametag read "Jeff". Hmm... how the hell would anyone ever pronounce that name wrong?!

That reminds me: In high school, I always used to dread the first day of class when they took attendance for the first time as the teachers would inevitably mess up my name. The class would then laugh and throw darts at me.

Wednesday, August 10, 2005

Conversation #2

This post is dedicated to the Rican and Gold Nugget, you'll soon see why! While talking to a friend today, the following exchange took place:

Friend: did you know albinos really exist?
Me: of course fool
Friend: I thought they were made up
Me: hahhaha
Friend: like unicorns
Me: hahahhahahah

Conversation #1

While talking to my sister online today, the following exchange took place:

Me: Hey, did you hear that Peter Jennings died?
Her: Yeah, that happened a few days ago.
Me: Wow, I'm really out of the loop
Her: Loop? What loop, there's no loop. It's not like there was some big secret where people purposefully tried to hide something from you.

Touche` sister, touche`.

How does that song go?

Have any of you out there ever thought you knew the lyrics to a song you like, only to find out later that you're way off base. This happened to me the other day, so I thought I'd give a quick run down of some songs where I thought I knew what the lyrics were, but it turned out that I didn't.

Song 1: "White men in black suits" by Everclear
Initially, I thought there was a verse that went like this

"All I want to do is lose myself in your room
All I want is just to smoke up in the afternoon"

The song really goes like this, however:

"All I want to do is lose myself in your room
All you want is just a slowfuck in the afternoon"

I thought the song was talking about smoking some weed in the afternoon, when it really was talking about a "slow fuck" in the afternoon. Hmm... both are legitimate gentlemanly pursuits I suppose. On to the next song.

Song 2: "Fake palindromes" by Andrew Baird
I really like this song and listened to it a lot this summer. I thought there was a verse that went like so:

"Sooner or now we can get together
and we'll talk about the weather"

The song really goes like this:

"Some lonely night we can get together
and I�m gonna tie your wrists with leather "

Whoa. I was way off here! Tying wrists up with leather?? Hmm... not my thing really. I'm a tad more innocent than the Rican and Gold Nugget after all.

The last song I'll mention is called "Diamonds and Guns" by a sweet ass band called "The Transplants"
I thought there was a verse that said "Im shootin up on illin out". I thought that that sounded pretty cool. The song really says "Im shootin up, I'm illin out" The first implies that one is high on life -- sort of like "Hey, im shooting up... but dont worry, I'm not shooting up on drugs.. but rather, on "illin out" The real verse, however, is not so innocent.

Do any of my loyal readers have any songs they like but were way off on what the lyrics were? Hit me up and comment away bitches.

Tuesday, August 02, 2005

Guess who's back? You're favorite nerd, that's who

Back in High School I was really shy and quite the big nerd. Did I talk to girls? Sure, when I didn't catch what the math homework was. I never went to a school dance or to a party, or did anything "cool" for that matter. I was a geek. I knew it, and so did our family friends. But no worries, I actually think it's best to go through high school as a nerd, for reasons I may share in a later post. But for now, that is the background you need for this upcoming post.

I was home this past weekend and some family friends happened to come over. I hadn't seen these people in at least 5 years or so, probably more. In their eyes, I'm still the shy little nerd they knew back when I was in High School. So anyways, we're all chatting and I tell them I'm going to Chicago next year, and that I'm trying to find a place to live in Chitown this week. The dad asks, "Do you know Chicago well?" I say that I don't. He then asks me how I'm gonna be able to find a place in Chicago if I don't know the city. I say "Oh, I'm meeting a friend from undergrad there, and she's gonna show me around and help me out." He replies "Oohhhh!!! Whoa whoa whoa!!! Did you hear that? A GIRRRRRRLllll is gonna help show him around?!!! Nice!" I couldn't help but laugh to myself and think "Jeez, I'm 25 now, not 16!!" Too funny.

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