Thursday, June 30, 2005

Boy Named Sue

How it's not done:
Anna and I were at our home-away-from-home, Amsterdam Falafel. I guarded the coveted table by the window, while Anna mirchified our fries. The shady characters moved in: black button-up clubbing shirts, unbuttoned, a miasma of cologne, and some pretty pathetic attempts at facial hair. This didn't look good. Anna came back to the table with the manna, and tagged me so I could wash my hands. I made sure all the seats at our table were occupied with backpacks and sweatshirts. Walking towards the shadesters, I considered saying "if you try to chat me or my friend up, I'll cut you." Not nice, but merited by the level of ogling. Back at the table, Anna told me that while she was saucin' up the frites, they had tried both of these gems: "So, you like it hot?" and "You like it SPICY?" Seriously, I can't make this shit up.

How it's done:
Two guys wandered in and sat between us and the shadesters - thanggod. Amsterdam plays an eclectic mix, to say the least. We were being serenaded by the soulful sounds of Golden Earring's "Radar Love." As usual, I needed a refill on the ketchup and garlic yumminess, and I noticed the guy at the next table was singing along. My college roomie always said that my secret superpower was knowing the words to every crap song ever written. (Muskrat Love, anyone?) I gave him some love for matching me in obscure lyrics skills. Three minutes later, the four of us were talking about our fantasty roadtrip: what car we'd choose, tuneage, etc.

The shadesters were rubbernecking like mad. Watch and learn, messieurs, watch and learn (while you're at it, button up the shirt - no one wants to see that!) Number one tip: don't treat women like walking twats (name of my next band.)

The crazy lyricist was named after his aunt (!!) by his incredibly hippy parents, and had quite the story. We all riffed about nomenclature (I call one of my dad's brothers, in translation, Uncle Baby-older- brother), SNL skits (Oswipe Johnson, of course), Las Vegas, and strip clubs (naturally.)

I left thinking that you never know when your next great conversation will be, and when you'll meet someone who makes worth talking to random people utterly worthwhile.


  • Splenda gives you cancer [girl smoking cig to friend sweetening up his tea.]
  • But I'm a horrendous dancer! [guy on cellphone during a break from BarBri]
  • Female, don't walk away from me [parking-obsessed guy in Adams Morgan]
  • Henry bequeaths all of his property to the couple's daughter, Dorkie [Community Property lecturer]
  • I think I'm getting "old man ass"....wait, was that TMI?[you know who you are]
  • Hm, I just touched your ass, I think. [coffeeshop, part I.]
  • I've seen better looking Japanese 95-year olds than this guy [coffeeshop, part II]

Wednesday, June 29, 2005

George Clooney *

Saj (previously mentioned in my LoMo post ) came to visit while I was still working (aka "BLS" - before law school.) I dropped her at the Metro and told her I'd meet her for dinner in Dupont.

In a weird coincidence, we ran into each other on the Red Line train that evening. She told me all about her day and her adventures, and then she said, "Yeah, at first I thought, 'Wow, George Clooney is really popular here. Maybe he was born in DC or something.'" I, of course, said "WTF are you talking about??" She said, "Well, at first, that's what I thought the Metro doors were saying: George Clooney, PING... PONG! "

I laugh about it every time I'm on the Metro.

* This story may not make sense if you've never been on the Metro in DC. The doors talk to you and say "Doors opening" and "doors closing." Each of these greetings/warnings is followed by two "musical" notes.

Tuesday, June 28, 2005


One of my favorite bloggers, Joe.My.God, covers a scene similar to my Eternal Sunshine post. But funnier, and more traumatic. And with drugs. And a bathhouse. And the Oscars.

What a Maroon.

I woke up Sunday morning with heart-in-the-throat panic: I forgot to pay the mortgage this month. I lay on the bed, fingers splayed, gripping the bed, heart pounding. I tried to think back over the month - did I pay it? I certainly didn't remember paying it. I ran downstairs to check the mortgage coupon book. If the chit was still there for this month, then I really hadn't paid it. Chit was still there, AND chit for homeowners' association fees was also in its book - I really hadn't paid it.

I went back upstairs and lay down, hoping the heart would stop racing and that the adrenaline would work itself out. Instead, I proceeded to freak out: I've never missed a payment before, now my credit is going to get all screwed up, and I really need my credit report to be all-clear because I'm going to have to rent an apartment, and oh yeah - buy a car, I can't BELIEVE I forgot, and it's already the 26th of July, what else have I been forgetting - have I paid the credit card bill, am I dropping other balls left, right and center?

Finally, I decided, even a "drain on society" like me needs to hit the shower and start the day. While in the shower, soaping up my hair, I realised:
  1. It's June 26th
  2. I have, in fact, paid the mortgage for June
  3. On July 26th, I'll be taking the Bar! (i.e. if I'm in my shower on July 26th, I have bigger problems than having forgotten to pay the mortgage.)
  4. I'm a freakshow.

Monday, June 27, 2005

NB: Chartreuseacre

maisnon17: I'm starting to look forward to working
maisnon17: I was on The Firm’s website
maisnon17: and I clicked on some of my fave attorneys
maisnon17: and I realized I want to start working
DTG78: no you don't
DTG78: work is hard
maisnon17: I know this for sure:
maisnon17: I never, ever, ever want to hear about Blackacre
maisnon17: ever fucking again

Sunday, June 26, 2005

To my favorite good ole boy/hip hop head: Happy Birthday

Happy Birthday, Matthew!

Matthew is one of the all-time BEST things to come out of my law school experience. I could never have dreamed that one of my closest friends would be a conservative Christian Republican from Appomattox, VA. We are so diametrically opposed, yet we're incredibly close. He's the person I call for a reality check, commiseration, and pure laughs.

How we met: Priya (not her real name), an Indian woman at my law school, had been gunning to get me married off, or at least "thinking in the right way." I only wish I were kidding. My usual tactic had been to just walk away, also known as the "cut and run." She was on to that maneuver, so I had added the "misunderstanding" to my game. Example: she told me about a "nice guy" she worked with, and I commented on how important it is to get along with co-workers, and then took off (combo move- extra points!)

This fateful day, I was seated at a table in the atrium taking sign-ups for Lexis (r) classes (i.e. a sitting duck.) I had just introduced Priya to Sapna. Priya turned to me and said in the sing-song voice that heralds impending doom, "Sapna is a nice married lady." HORRIFYING! As it turns out, Sapna was also scarred by the experience, but in war - sometimes it's every soldier for herself. I pretended to not understand what Priya was getting at. I hadn't even noticed the guy signing up for some class because my vision had narrowed to the problem at hand.

"I think she's saying that you should get married" said Unhelpful Guy. How I could have killed him.

Such great friendship from such inauspicious beginnings.

When I was in California last summer, I'd save his phone messages for days and replay them, just to hear his accent. It's like listening to a smile. And have you ever heard French with a Southern accent? You're missing out.

I enjoy people for their contradictions, so I love that his heart is in bluegrass, but he always knows the latest Luda. (I've often said that Matthew and I could have a cable-access show called "Matthew and D decrypt the hip hop lyrics.") Matthew has a horrendous fear of giving speeches, but is the most natural, affable, engaging and charming speaker I know. (And despite this fear, he was our SBA president.) Matthew is incredibly humble and bombastic to humorous effect. Like most of my male friends, he's a bit of a chick (in the "what did he mean when he said that??" way), but every inch the Southern gentleman.

And the dimples, could he be any more adorable? I think not.

Friday, June 24, 2005

NB: Build me Up, Buttercup

Ramblings about Bar stuff:
  • Sakai and Honigsberg are the Good Cop/Bad Cop of Cal BarBri. "You will fail if you don't write an essay everyday" v. "FABULOUS!! PASS! PASS! PASS!"
  • I'm starting to cut my losses on the MBE. For the remaining subjects, I will attend the lecture, and make flashcards. I will only consult CMR if there is a section of a subject that I am TOTALLY unclear on. It's taking too long, and I think my time is better spent on working on the essay, and PT section
  • Starting the 11th, I will be writing an essay a day. The more practice I do, the more comfortable I feel (and hopefully, sooner rather than later, comfortable will become confident.)
  • I'm also hoping to write a performance test every weekend. This is how I've prepared for every standardized test since the PSATs (yes, I did practice tests for them - welcome to having Indian parents! ;) )
  • A huge part of the PT seems to be getting over perfectionism, identifying the issue, writing something (even if it is wrong), and moving the HELL on. Point taken, Honigsberg, stop freakin' yelling at me.
  • You know what would make HUGE money? Designing a network cable that would enable a student to upload all of their flashcards into memory! I have about 300 at this point, and we haven't touched the Cal topics yet. My goal is to flip through the cards for 1-2 topics a day. After the lectures end, I will settle down to the business of "powering up" on all the rules.

Some good news: my attention span has increased (and thanggod!) When BarBri started, I could only focus for about 5 minutes at a time (and I'm not exaggerating.) Now ,I can go about 45 min at a time. Our class has FINALLY done a little on each part of the exam, and I'm feeling a wee bit more confident now - and I'm nurturing that. A huge part of this exam is mental - I know that by showtime I'll have the resources I need. It's not about being perfect, or knowing everything - it's about keeping your head, being smart, and just plugging away.

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Thursday, June 23, 2005

Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind

Why I’ll Never Be Able To Take Myself Too Seriously, even if I’m Rich, Famous, and Utterly Cool.

Last year, as a treat after exams, I took myself to see "Eternal Sunshine of the Spotless Mind." I’d wanted to see it for a long, long time, but classes and exams had conspired to keep me away. When I finally saw the movie, it had been relegated to the purgatory of those tiny, oddly shaped, side theaters at the multiplex.

I’m picky about seats, but I was practically the only person at the show, so I was able to get a seat in what I consider to a theater’s sweet spot (essentially, the middle of the theater – right distance from the screen, and from the speakers, etc.) I could feel the tension from the last few weeks slipping off my shoulder as the preview started rolling.

If you haven’t seen "Eternal Sunshine," I’d recommend it. Overall, I’d say it leans more towards the drama side of the spectrum, but it definitely has its funny moments. I have a fairly loud laugh, sometimes embarrassingly so. During the movie, I noticed that someone else also had a loud laugh. "Good on ya!" I thought. As the movie continued, I realised Ms. Loud Laughter and I had very similar senses of humor. Three quarters through the movie, I had decided that she was my new best friend, my long-lost soulsister. Then, there was a scene where I let out a sharp bark of laughter…and so did my new best friend. And that’s when I realized that I’d been falling in like with an echo.

I was mortified -- so, so embarrassed. I blushed to the roots of my hair and slunk down in my seat. Of course, no one knew what I’d been thinking, but I knew, and that was enough.

And that’s why, no matter how cool, rich, famous, hip (okay, that last one is impossible) I ever become, I’ll always know exactly what a dork I am.

How happy is the blameless vestal's lot!
The world forgetting, by the world forgot.
Eternal sunshine of the spotless mind!
Each pray'r accepted, and each wish resign'd;

- Alexander Pope

Wednesday, June 22, 2005

La vie en rose

Quand il me prend dans ses bras

I will drive to my favorite beach on Rt. 1, set up a beach chair, and watch dogs romp. Maybe write in my journal.

Il me parle tout bas,

Road trip!! I don’t care where I go – but there will be a 2 hour road trip, complete (compleat) with ragingly good tunes.

Je vois la vie en rose.

Spend an entire day watching some reality TV-show marathon – my brains will be mush, and this will complete the process. I watched a Project Runway marathon when I had a cold, and I think it's the only way to do reality TV. Pure mental junk food, and I loved it. In the alternative, get season 2 of "24" and watch it obsessively. (I did this with season 1 – thanks Jerry!)

Il me dit des mots d'amour,

Movies. I have at least a movie a week in me for AT least a year, if not more. I have this crazy fantasy of sprinting down the aisle of not-Blockbuster, and just sweeping movies into a shopping cart, and cackling. More realistically, I’ll probably get NetFlix and put so many movies in my queue that I can never die.

Des mots de tous les jours,

I will take my long-suffering best friend Pat to lunch at Café Niebaum-Coppola, and then wander down to the Borders.

Et ca me fait quelque chose.

I will take my mom shopping and not look at my watch once. In one of those weird mother-daughter ironies, my mother swears by my taste in clothes and will not wear ANYTHING that I haven’t approved, yet hates the things I put together for myself. I’ve told her that I hate hate hate shopping with her, but I will take her on a veritable shopping spree – she deserves it.

Il est entre dans mon coeur

On my list of things to do before I leave DC: visit the National Arboretum. I’ve been rediscovering my inner botanist, and exploring photographing plants. I’ll say this much for them, they never move and ruin the shot!

Une part de bonheur

Prevail upon all of my friends to send me their top 5 books from the last 3 years (oh what the hell, let’s make it 5 years.) Because I’m a big geek, I will compile a HUGE list – priority determined by number of "hits" for each title. And then, I will go to TOWN. Even after 3 years of reading multiple hundreds of pages every day, I love love love to read, and miss fiction like my favorite aunt. I can’t wait for the family reunion.

Dont je connais la cause.

Visit one of my oldest friends (it doesn’t hurt that she lives in NYC and has a guest bedroom!) Her house is a sanctuary. We’ve known each other for so so long, and we put no pressure on each other. If we don’t want to leave the house, we don’t. If we want to go the diner on the corner in our PJs, we will. She’s a great hostess. I can’t wait to recharge my batteries.

C'est lui pour moi. Moi pour lui

Make peace with selling the very first house I ever owned. Get through moving with a minimum of angst and anxiety. I know that it will be yet another emotional rollercoaster for me, and that I accept. But, I do want to keep extraneous bullshit to a minimum.

Dans la vie,

Music. I have a lot of catching up to do here too. With the last of my Lexis points, I finally purchased a Stevie Wonder collection. My.God.So.Good. I shed actual tears. This was a bit embarassing, since I was practically shoulder-to-shoulder with other people studying for the Bar. I had to do the "oh there’s something in my eye causing me to tear up, oh wait – now it’s the other eye too" napkin-dabbing thing.

Il me l'a dit, l'a jure pour la vie.

Journée de beauté! Give me an S! Give me a P! Give me an A!

Et des que je l'apercois

Go to Lavandou and have a glass of ridiculously good Chilean red - and use my two phrases of Dutch on the bartender (or my four phrases of Spanish if it's the Chilean guy.)

Alors je sens en moi

Shower Gia with love, attention, and cat treats. In all honesty, law school has probably been hardest on her.

Mon coeur qui bat

I will spend time by myself just being. No agenda, no deadline, no schedule, nothing tickling the back of my mind, no guilt. Just a glass of iced tea and the sound of my own breathing.


anna and the madness

Last night, Anna and I met our LA-based blogging friend, Abhi. (I have to admit, saying that I've met an "online friend" makes me feel like some kind of MUSH/MUD-type geek. I feel like I should have piercing eyes and a cape. That's not to say that I don't HAVE piercing eyes and a cape.) We made our now-daily pilgrimage to Tryst and Amsterdam Falafel on 18th St.

Not that there was really any doubt, but I'm now officially an auntie. Once I decided that Abhi is sweetness personified, I immediately thought " I know any nice girls?"

Soon, I'll be shouting into cellphones, and trying to talk my friends into going to the 7 pm movie.

Monday, June 20, 2005

NB: "This is the goddamn [insert veggie you hate] of Bar preparation"

I think all Bar-prep types are in the doldrums. This is really the tea-time of the soul. Neither the excitement and "newness" of the beginning of Bar study (yes - once and for all, we've established that I am a geek extraordinaire), nor the crunch-time of having the end in sight.

I've taken it upon myself to tell you that WE'RE EXACTLY WHERE WE NEED TO BE. I know that it's very, very hard right now. I'm sick of finding YET ANOTHER area that "needs work." But, you know what, this is the time that counts. It's where you put aside the urge to weep (yes, I've considered crying over Property. I didn't because I realised that it just wouldn't help. Trust me, if it would - even a little bit - I'd cry hot tears over it.)

So, what to do? (In)congruously, I remember my marathon training. Specifically, I remember my coach telling me that when it is the very hardest to continue, pick up the pace. It's counterintuitive - but it really works. It shakes up your little system, it takes you a little further, and you can find a second (or third, or fourth) wind. Having a productive study session will motivate you SO MUCH. Promise a productive hour and be proud of yourself when you make it.

Be good to yourself - take some time off. That probably sounds crazy, especially considering the ever-lengthening list of things to "review" (is it still review when, apparently, you never learned it in the first place?) Trust me, taking an evening off and truly enjoying yourself, indulging yourself even, will put you in a much better headspace to get your ish done.

Have faith in yourself. You've come really, really far and done SO MUCH to be here. In the words of Papa Smurf, not much further my little smurfs!

Finally, don't be afraid. I think that's the root of procrastination, at least for me. (If I don't do it, then I didn't fail at it, and there's still a chance that I'll do it and maybe even do it well.) Face your fear and write the damn essay (clearly, a note to self), read the long outline on Future Interests. Don't be scared, you really do have the time. Take it one little step, one little issue at a time. It's much, much better to address your weak points NOW, rather than having that sick feeling in your stomach hoping and praying that they won't be on the exam.

Take heart, it's hard now, but everyone is in the same place with you. Take a moment to breathe, and then get in there and KICK SOME ASS!

Sunday, June 19, 2005

Quote. Unquote.

There are two types of people - those who make fun of people, and those who make fun of people


Saturday, June 18, 2005

I'm famous, part 3?

DCblogs noted my rant about street hustlahs/romeos. But, how? Why?

I've had a blog for....3 weeks, and apparently I've had over 1300 hits. I just kind of assumed that 999 of them or so were me. Other people, besides my BarBlawg faithful, actually read my blog?



That whole phrase "the truth is stranger than fiction"? TRUE

Actual Google search that deposited someone here:
"drills for jamaican accent only"

Just so that we're clear, Jamaican accent drills ONLY. No Bajan, Bahamian, or Trini accents need apply. Don't get it twisted! I can't even imagine what they were actually hoping to find. I can only be sure that they did NOT find it here.

A bonus point to anyone who knows where the title is from :)

NB: View from Week 3

A jug of wine, a loaf of bread, a BarBri outline, and thou...

(1) My first essay came back with these comments:


Wow. Absolutely no advice on how I could improve my score. I guess I should be happy (?)

(2) I think that I'm getting a lot out of Stragedy, version 2.0. I've actually started adding flashcards from the CMR, and I think it's worth it. (After the "you don't need to know malicious prosection/abuse of process" Torts essay debacle, I decided I better start going through the CMR.) For the devotees of StudySmart, it's on there! Just select textbook, and it has the CMR for all of the MBE subjects.

(3) I'm not sure how many of you took the BarBri first year semester reviews. I did, and much as I love Dick, and Paula, etc. etc. - it's pretty hard to listen to the SAME LECTURE again. It's not so much even the lecture, as the jokes, the songs, the examples that start to annoy.

(4) I'm getting over my essay procrastination. I make it a 2 hour thing. First hour - outline essays 1,2, and 3. Second hour, write the essay and turn that sucker in! By doing that, I find that I have a good idea of the strategy/organization I'm going to use for that topic. I'm hoping that soon, I'll get it together and assign myself an essay a day.

(5) Performance Test. I'm a *little* anxious that we haven't touched this area yet, and won't until next Thursday (6/23), but it's not like I don't have enough to keep me busy until then! ;)

The pic: me studying Property by candlelight in a coffeeshop. If only Paula Franzese had been there she could have lit up the night with her awesome display of bling. During the lecture, when she would "give us the pope" (i.e. show us the back of her hand) - or heaven forfend, give us the pope with both hands -my mouth would drop open, and I'd totally lose track of what she was saying.

Thursday, June 16, 2005

I. Am. Batman.

Many years ago, I went to Lilith Fair on the spur-of-the-moment (a friend of a friend had an extra ticket.) As usual, I had not prepared for the weather and it started raining. I wore friend-of-a-friend's extra flannel shirt (hey, it was the grunge era!) It was super ginormously huge on me - and for some reason, I stood on one leg (think tree pose in yoga) and kept saying, "I am Batman." while holding out my flannel "wings." (Frighteningly, I was stone cold sober - there's a reason I don't drink much - I'm weird enough without it, thanks.)

I ended up chatting with the peeps on the next blanket over, and I emailed one of the girls the next week. The email said "Hi, it's me - you know, Batman."

I still think that's the funniest email I've ever sent.

P.S. - Go see "Batman Begins" - it's decent! [High praise, coming from me.]

Monday, June 13, 2005

LoMo, PN

My friend and travel buddy extraordinaire Saj once had a dream where she walked around yelling:


in a Jamaican accent. (NB: at the time, she worked with a Jamaican guy.)

We adopted this as our rallying cry whenever one of us was hard core procrastinating.

Later on, I declared the capital of Procrastination Nation to be LoMo (for low motivation.)

Violently happy

If I were a Little Miss book, I'd be Little Miss Crankypants (amazingly, NOT one of the titles in that series.)

Nothing major, but I've had a series of mini-disappointments, that have accumulated into the feeling that a dark star is trailing me. So much so, in fact, that my luck infected my entire BarBri class today - our tape was defective, so we had to do an emergency switch to CD.

A friend informed me today that I'm being self-centred thinking that the dark star belongs to just me - apparently everyone (even non-BarBri types) is having a hard time of it right now. She said something about the moon being in the wrong house, or something. (Yeah, neither of us know anything about astrology.)

For some reason, I thought back to first year: I felt like the luckiest girl in the world - in fact, I signed a series of emails with that title. And I still am. I went back and read those emails, full of how freakin' incredible I was finding law school, and how lucky I felt to be there. I still feel that way at times (these moments are few and far between, but still.) I had a moment in today's class where I just looked around and realized how close I am to the end of the long water slide (twists and turns, and some more twists and turns) that has been law school.

Just as noting a few mini-disappointments can lead to the funk, reminding myself how lucky I am to be in my position, and noting the good things in life should get me out.

Sunday, June 12, 2005

To the would-be Romeos

  • I am walking somewhere as a means of transportation, or to enjoy the day - NOT hoping to meet and/or talk to you. I will start out polite, but cold....and get colder.
  • In fact, I don't owe you a conversation, or anything else. Yelling won't help. Calling me a racist, a bitch, etc. might make me laugh (at you.) But, oh, I still won't owe you anything.
  • Don't hit on/leer at me while you're picking your nose. That's right, your finger has broken the close of your nostril - you're now picking your nose. That's hot.
  • Don't tell me about how "you knew this Indian girl once." Do you think I feel closer to you? I don't. There are a billion people in India, never mind the whole diaspora.
  • Similarly, any line that starts out "Yo, Indian girl"... Pat and I still laugh about it 5 years later - not the desired effect, I'm sure.
  • Shower, not shower in cologne. Enough said.
  • If you are 2.5 times what you THINK my age is - what are you thinking? We can't all be Tom Cruise, you know.
  • When the line "I see you in school 'cuz you got books, what time you get off school?" tripped off your tongue so easily, I wondered how many high school girls you've been trying to chat up. Seriously - gross.
  • This may be a DC thing: do not hiss/suck teeth/make kissy sounds at me. Trust me, this doesn't make me want to get any nearer your creepiness.
  • When I tell you to take a picture because it will last longer, don't look affronted - you're the one who's given me the elevator look 3 times.
  • Construction workers, et al. - wow, you must really think you're the Big Man. Don't be surprised if I channel my inner Miranda and talk to you/yell back. Kinda funny how the Big Man looks so creeped out when I yell, "I'm sorry, what did you say?"
  • Please don't chat me up while your girlfriend/wife is in the same aisle of the grocery store. It only makes me really sad for her.
  • I just find it funny when you try and hide your left hand. I know you're married, but don't worry - I wouldn't go out with you even if you weren't.
  • Do NOT hit on me when I'm with my mom. I'll be less harsh, it's true, but it still won't make a difference. I have an entire lexicon of "looks causing death." As my friend Rick once said, I can make your blood stop and reverse directions with a glance.

Saturday, June 11, 2005


DTG said, "I have to stop messing with you when you're studying for the Bar. You're like a caged animal."

So damn true. Also true (and equally, if not more, sad), I immediately thought "Strict liability for wild animals in Torts!"

Friday, June 10, 2005

Nota bene: Stragedy, version 2.0

Okay, so if you're going to be weirded out reading my new study theories, don't read further.

I think that we all found our way in law school by figuring out what works for us as individuals. For me, I know that I have to REPEAT things, and try and see it in different forms. From our scary-ass "Essay Workshop" today, I realize that I need to get on the ball with the essays PDQ.

SO, here is my plan:

  • Drills & Questions: When we have completed a topic, do all drills and questions. I'm moving over to StudySmart b/c (1) it keeps track of how you do in subtopics of each area, and (2) it pops up the answer for each Q as you finish it - which is how I make progress - seeing where I was off right away.
  • Notes/Outlines: I'm still typing in notes taken in class into the Word docs to review on a daily basis. I try to make my own condensed outline - helps me understand how the topics fit together, and will help on essays. Maybe work in some CMR here, or in the...
  • Flashcards: I'm not sure when, if ever, I'll look at these bad boys - but it REALLY helps me to write the material out. It's an active doing, as opposed to typing. And it's a 3rd run-through the material.
  • Essays: NO MORE PROCRASTINATING! I liked Sakai's idea about using MBE questions as jumping off points to practice writing a specific issue, no idea when this will happen - but I'll try it someday.
  • Review: Per Sakai's advice/lecture, I'm hoping to spend 1 hour a day reviewing material from earlier on. I am hoping to use the info from StudySmart to target areas that I don't get - hello CMR and detailed outline I've been assiduously avoiding!

That's not so much, is it?

Thursday, June 09, 2005


Most innovate study technique.....EVER!

So, I happen to share a suite of offices with a Nobel Prize winner. I'm always here late studying. I just went by his door and put my head on it, you know - to soak up any extra brain waves he might have left lying around. BRILLIANT !!

I know you're jealous.

Wednesday, June 08, 2005

Night and Day

delightful, delovely, delicious

Peeling Diana Krall a grape over cranberry juice and conversation. Long meanderings in search of the Metro. Finally beating Adams Morgan at its own game. My favorite frites joint pumping Ella. Feeling so boldly alive that I actually sing along. The ginkgo trees in their palmate splendor. Gossiping about the people around us in not one, not two, but THREE languages. And the fries, bliss on waxed paper.

Tuesday, June 07, 2005

Giving "Down Under" new meaning

Mad props to the Aussie that googled i touched a stripper and found MY blog.

I hope I didn't disappoint.

Nota bene In re: Perspective

Taking my internal temperature and talking to fellow Bar-toilers, I realize that we’re all freaking out. I am a big believer in energy, and opportunity cost. Energy used for one purpose can’t be used for another. Energy wasted on worrying about not passing the Bar can’t be spent on actually studying for the Bar.

Referring to the cliché that this is a marathon, and not a sprint – there is a strong mental element. I let myself flounder a bit to find my feet, but now, in conjunction with preparing myself for the substantive component, I’m developing my mental arsenal. Channeling my inner-Tony Robbins, I’m visualizing myself at the exam, I’m focusing my self-talk (i.e. pulling the plug on my daymares about not failing), I’m building my confidence by thinking about the challenges that I’ve already faced, and I’m trusting the process (well, I’m trying – this is the hardest thing in the world for me.)

The other big part of this is perspective: every lawyer I know (and I know a lot – I live in the DC area) has passed a Bar exam. Hard, but not impossible. Sometimes you can eliminate anxiety by thinking about what you fear the most: if I don’t pass, I’ll take the exam again. It won’t be fatal.

Don’t get me wrong, I understand how difficult the exam is, and the pass percentage, etc. My most immediate goal is to PASS THAT SUCKAH - I’m just cleaning my mental house (the better to refill it with 1L class material, my dear.)

Comment dit-on?

My parents' friends are always skeptical that I understand Malayalam (understandably, since I won't speak it.) They always test my understanding with one of the following two questions:

(1) Do you understand?

(2) Would you like some tea?

And that explains Malayalees to a T, I think.

Monday, June 06, 2005

Bon Mots

Favorite quotes, etc. from today:

  • "She seems really hostile, or maybe that's just how God made her face."

  • Are You Meant to Be Sexually? [In my email inbox. I pondered and pondered what it meant. I was sure that there was a word missing. Are you meant to be sexually...what? Then I took it as some veiled message about my dating life (or lack thereof.) And they'd know, of course, I mean - they ARE, after all!]

  • "She sits down hard and breaks a bone in her ass. And she’s not happy" - Prof. Schecter, summing up Garrett v. Daily in Bar prep Torts class today.

  • Baby Saved by a Jury of Peers : more from my favorite Pun-jabi, Manish.

Sunday, June 05, 2005


Nota bene: do NOT read this if you aren't studying for a Bar exam. It'll be hella boring and .... really, that's reason enough

I haven't found my BarBri groove yet. I'm trying to figure out what mix of strategies works for me. Right now, this is what I do:
  • Go to class and take notes on the BarBri outline provided. (I'm planning to bring my laptop to the Torts lectures, since there is no handout thingo.)
  • Review that evening by typing in the info I took down into the Word version of the outline. I find this helpful b/c I basically go over each of the "teaching hypotheticals" again and reason it out.
  • After the topic is over, condense into my own outline. (For example, K went from 71 pages to 10.)
  • When I take the multiple-choice questions, I check my answers after each group associated with a particular fact pattern. (I tried doing it at the end, but I have often forgotten WHY I went with a certain wrong answer.)
  • I note what I got wrong, and the rule or trick in the question that I missed
  • Flashcards from my condensed outline and what I got wrong.

How am I doing? What are you doing that's working for you? I am taking the 3-day PMBR course at the end, but haven't touched those books. I have some of the CDs as well, but realised that I need my (very short) commute to class to NOT be about Bar prep.

Update: I outlined my first essay, and I realize that having an approach for each topic is going to be a REALLY good idea. I know BarBri gives us checklists, and I'll definitely use them, but there's something to be said for coming up with your own system. Kind of like an "issue spotter" list - I used these in law school and found them very helpful. SO - when the lectures on a topic are over, in addition to the condensed outline - I will write an issue spotter checksheet.

Saturday, June 04, 2005

I'm a bad way, part II

During exams, procrastination becomes high art. This last go-round, one night I told DTG that I have been quoted in just about every newspaper EVER. To prove the point to him, I googled myself (an unsavory, and slightly embarassing business.)

I was truly shocked when, in addition to the news links I expected, a hit on a blog that I had just started reading that week came up. His coverage of me being quoted partout:

This quote is from a story about cancelled flights: ''I am irritated,'' said maisnon, a law student from Washington who was supposed to be on a canceled British Airways flight. ''I am sure there are reasons but I do wish we had known what was going on earlier.''Those pesky terrorists! Why won't they give us more of a heads up?I love that quote, "I am sure there are reasons..." Did she just wake up from a three-year coma?

Wow. So, yet again, I surf the web and, but in expected places. And yet again, I'm FAMOUS, but in a "people-think-I'm-an-idiot" way.

This is what happened: I was on a flight between Heathrow and Dulles that was cancelled. They'd cancelled the same flight the day before, so I had called British airways ALL day. I booked it across London, only to have the flight cancelled while I unloaded my bag. I broke my own little rule and talked to the press. AP, Reuters, BBC, ABC, et al interviewed me as one of the passengers on the cancelled flight. I said I was annoyed that they hadn't cancelled the flight earlier, which was spun in the stories as "maisnon is annoyed, but other passengers are glad the airline is looking out for safety." I wanted to get back to school come HELL or HIGHWATER.

And let's have a look at the above quote: the "I am irritated" is PURE me, as any of my friends will attest to, but the rest of I channeling Mary Poppins? Did I suddenly become British after 2 days in Merry Olde England? Shouldn't I have said "I am cross"?

Friday, June 03, 2005

I'm a bad way, part I

This is such a weird series of events, I'm not even sure where to start. Deep breadth.

Okay, backstory - I read A Girl Walks into a Bar (Exam) written by a fellow-toiler who will take the CA Bar in July. A chiquita named Heather has commented a few times on that blog, and I thought that she might be taking the CA Bar review in the same location as me.

Recently, Chai commented on my blog. I decided to peruse her blog, since she is yet ANOTHER fellow toiler. (By the way, she picked a FABULOUS template ;) ) On her BlogList, I see someone named Heather...could it be? What are the chances? Hmmm...THIS Heather is also taking the CA Bar....also reads Girl Walks into a Bar. I think we have a winner. Who woulda thought, right? What a crazy small world!

Yeah, no, it's just getting good.

I scroll through Heather's posts and find this one :

The girl in front of me today had with her on the first substantive day of bar/bri: a stack of no less than 75 hand-made contracts flash cards made with two types of pens, two-hole punched and stacked neatly inside a plastic index-card sized 'binder'; and a separate note-pad to take notes that she couldn't fit on the outline she was filling in and highlighting with multiple colors.

  • I brought a stack of flashcards (and filled out the first 10 with the reading we did that morning),
  • I just bought an index card binder,
  • I had a little notepad in addition to my outline,
  • I highlight the BarBri outline with two colors.

That's right, folks - I managed to paddle myself through the Interwebs to a post ABOUT ME, and more importantly ABOUT HOW GEEKY I AM.

Thank you, thank you - you've been a great audience. I'm here all week.

P.S. - I went through some denial where I thought it could be some other school supply-obsessed person, but no - in a quick volley of comments, Heather and I established that I was, in fact, the object of her geek scorn.

P.P.S - I met Heather today - this could be the start of a beautiful friendship. Isn't this the most hilarious "how we met" story?


Oooh La La La
It's the way that we rock when we're doing our thang

Do you remember when you first heard the Fugees? I do. It was one of Jesse's hip hop nights at Stages (the beginning of my "I'm with the DJ" years.) The place had cleared out (not that there's much more clearing necessary when it's a Tuesday night.) Rick was doing the typical male hip hop dance move (hunch-y shoulders, left foot goes forward, left foot goes back, right foot goes forward, right foot goes back, head bob, head bob. Repeat.) The music started, then the beat, then Lauryn's voice.

"Ready or Not" came on the radio as I was driving to school this morning. I hummed along with Lauryn, and hit the first words at exactly the right moment. Why do I know all the lyrics to a song from 10 years ago, but can't remember what I just read? If someone explained the statute of frauds to me with a smooth flow over some tight beats... Lauryn, give me a call - I have a real career opportunity for you.

Thursday, June 02, 2005


i never promised you a rose garden

There is a wee little rose garden next to the law school where I am taking my Bar prep class. Thankfully, the powers that be at BarBri know exactly how long my attention span is - we get breaks every 50 minutes. I always find myself here. Two strips of roses separated by concrete and grates, an odd combination of urban grit and delicacy. It's my little connection with the world - I won't always have a schedule that involves 12 hours of studying, there will come a day where I'm not up to my hairline in the parol evidence rule, bona fide purchasers, and strict liability.

(yeah, okay, so I'm not doing 12 hours of studying - I should be.)

Wednesday, June 01, 2005

Why an evening with DTG adds years to your life and life to your years

Previous episode:

After I identified the aria* playing in the cheesy Italian chain restaurant we were in, DTG called me refined. Hilarious because (1) I called him not 15 minutes earlier and opened with, "Yo, b!tch ass...", and (2) because we were having a late dinner in order to catch Revenge of the Sith(the night it came out, thank you very much.) Neither of these things says "refined" to me. I did, however, write the word "raffiné(e)" (French) for him on the paper cloth with the provided crayons. (Yes - that kind of restaurant.)

Actual conversation last night:

Me: So are you having dinner with me?
DTG: Uh, no.
DTG: Blah blah blah (I think he was talking about his new job, but who knows?)
Me: Seriously, are we having dinner or what?
DTG: Blah blah blah. Oh, I got my first paycheck today!
Me: Oh good, so dinner is on you!
DTG: Wow, way to strong arm me! And we're not even dating!
Me: Well, according to us, at least.

Shortly thereafter, walking to dinner (I won), DTG was a little concerned because the back pocket of his pants ripped a teeny hole in his pants.

DTG: Does it look okay??
Me: It's not noticeable.
DTG: Are you sure?
Me: Yeah, looks fine.
DTG: Seriously?
Me: I don't want to look at your butt anymore!
DTG: But you kinda do.

Ah, good times...good times.

* "La Donna é Mobile" from Verdi's "The Rigoletto." Nearly everyone knows this tune - it was in a Pillsbury commercial, for crying out loud. (I think Doughboy sang about dinner rolls, or some such.)