Monday, February 2, 2009

Treatise on Why Law School Formals Should Be Illegal

Warning: This article has very little to do with Jews.

So if you read my previous post, you’ll know that Saturday night was Barrister’s Ball at the zoo. While “Barrister’s Ball” is a pretty lame name, at least it wasn’t “Preponderance of the EviDANCE” or “A Twist With Rehnquist” or “PROMisorry Estoppel.” Still, I awoke Sunday morning with a realization on the idiocy of law school dances…and a hangover.

Before the dance even began there was unnecessary drama. A bunch of people wanted to take photos at an apartment building and then cab it over to the zoo. Of course the kid who ordered the cabs miscalculated the number that we needed and proceeded to hop into the first one that arrived. Eight guys and I stood outside the building for a second flock of cabs that would never come. It was like waiting for Godot, but not as existentially meaningful.

So let me ask you, how many future lawyers does it take to order a cab? Apparently one, as long as she’s female. After a few minutes of waiting, I turned to my neighbors. “Are you guys sure there are more cabs coming?” They looked at me as if I had asked them to explain the origin of viral meningitis. One of them even had a phone in his hand, which he stared at like a compact mirror. I made the call and ordered more cabs. As soon as I hung up the phone, one of the guys suggested walking to the zoo. I reminded him that transportation was imminently arriving. Then another guy proposed racing the first guy to the zoo. I obviously go to school with geniuses/wannabe cheetahs.

Law school prom was made even better by the chaperones. They didn’t call themselves “chaperones.” Rather, they called themselves misleading things like “professors of law” or “dean.” They were effectively worse than chaperones because instead of correcting the behavior they saw (enabled by the five-hour open bar), they stood around holding mental Sharpies and taking mental notes. You might not know them, but they sure as heck know you. In fact, I think I saw the head of the career services office there. His mental Sharpie is non-erasable, the kind you realize is permanent as soon as you swipe it across a whiteboard. He can blacklist you out of any firm job in St. Louis.

Along with the “chaperones,” you are surrounded by your classmates. From a professional standpoint, these are your future colleagues who you will refer cases to and who you will get referrals from. After Saturday night, though, whenever I think of Clara Lennox, Esq., I’ll remember her grinding against some dude’s leg. Actually, I think it was Emily’s date. Maybe I’ll refer Clara my divorce cases…

Then there was tuxedo guy. He’s only 23, but he has two other tuxedos at home. They’re leftovers from whatever formals his Ivy League eating club held. I told him he looked like James Bond with a comb-over. I’d be lucky to be referred divorce cases from him.
And then there was “really drunk 3L.” You see, first, second, and third year law students rarely ever fraternize. And it should really stay that way. If they must meet, though, it shouldn’t be when they are thrown in the zoo together with endless bottles of Bacardi. It’s only slightly better treatment than the monkeys get.

I ended up befriending a 3L who gave me somewhat unsolicited advice on how to find a job. We exchanged phone numbers, but I don’t know if she remembered me even twelve hours later. What do I do if I pass her in the hall? Saying “Hi” is out of the question…I’m debating between the “smile and nod” or the old “look down and pretend to remove an eye booger.” You don’t know how many eye boogers I’ve actually discovered and evicted with that trick.

The final fatal flaw to the theory and practice of a law school formal is not as obvious— it’s the tension that arises between the wait staff and the inebriated future lawyers. Law students, more than any other group I can name, like to argue. They especially like to parse words over stupid shit because it’s the only time they get to apply the skills they are supposedly learning in the classroom. E.g. Saturday night a scene arose between a certain law student and her server who attempted to pick up her salad plate while she was still eating. She quashed that motion real fast. However, she wasn’t as quick on the objection when the server came by later. He lifted the salad plate, with fork and knife still on it, and also the side plate, which harbored a patch of butter and a quarter-eaten roll. It was attempted larceny.

Law Student: “Wait! Can’t I keep my bread?”
Server: “But I already touched it.”
Law Student: “I don’t remember you touching it.”
Server: “My hand touched it.”
Law Student: “But I don’t care.”
Server: “I can’t give it back.”
Law Student: “What is ‘touching’ anyway? Was it your fingers? How many fingers?”
Server: “I’ll bring you another roll.”

He never did. I…I mean, the law student…never got another knife, either. And I motion to amend the record— it was actual larceny.


Zuz said...

legallybrunette, welcome to the blog! It's good to have someone who clearly has her priorities in the right place when it comes to law school!

Keep the wit coming, don't let it be crushed in Contracts class!

!JustDance said...

so you hate law parties, the people that go to them, and the fact that you have no time to read other things because law school takes away your ability to be human.

Why are you in law school again? This is quite the downer :(