Saturday, August 30, 2003

Weekend Daze…

I’ve kind of been in a funk all week. I think it’s the whole back-to-school thing, and all the pressure of the week. To top things off, my granduncle died this week; his second wife was such a bitch, she didn’t want to tell any of his four children by his first marriage (my aunts and uncles) that he’d died. She told her own daughter that she’d called the family and let them know. Fortunately, the daughter decided to keep asking, eventually learning of her intent, and persuaded her to tell her stepchildren. But it was the daughter who called, and not until Monday night (he died Sunday morning), to tell her half-siblings that their father was dead and the wake would be the following morning and the funeral on Wednesday morning, and, oh, if you could please not talk to the second wife, that would be grand. Actually, I don’t think wifey #2 used the word please. And at least one half-sibling found out via message on the answering machine.

Of course, this meant that my cousins would be interrogating me once I walked into the funeral Wednesday morning, after finding out Tuesday night at dinner. I had half-expected this, since I knew that things were strained to begin with, and since Wednesday, I’ve learned that many an interesting thing has happened. And that it will only get more bloody. Fortunately, my involvement will be limited to merely referring the attorney we work with at the small tax office where I do part-time work.

Apartment Hunting – Fini

I found a place, as I said before. But Thursday brought the official news that I was approved, and that I was the official new tenant. Scott posted a comment welcoming me to the neighborhood (thanks, Scott – I move in October, so we’ll have to do beers at Yak-zee’s sometime after that to celebrate), and warning me about dumb Wrigley-area tourists, a breed I’ve been familiar with since my days at Ace Hardware’s HQ, when my co-worker Joel lived at Grace and Kenmore. He, too, told tales of people wandering around, asking silly questions. His bad luck was to live down the street from the left-field wall, where an occasional Sammy Sosa home run would come bounding down, chased by hopefuls intent on snatching a souvenir.

So now I need to start packing. And tell the current landlord that I’ll be moving out.


With the stress of starting classes, deadlines anew, finding an apartment, the funeral, and God knows what else (including spending today feeling like crap because I think the salad I made wasn’t properly cleaned – damn), I needed a good laugh. Thank God for Jeremy. I laughed so damn hard, I cried. Especially the post about law school resumes (room 750, closet #2? Holy crap those rooms at Harvard are small).

Here’s my take on a few things:

Buying books:

Jeremy, you lucky bastard. Only two hundred bucks? Wow. I dropped $500, and that was without supplements. Toss those in, and I’m over $600 easy. Your review of the crim law book was dead on, though. The only book more fun than that (so far)? Civil Procedure, of course. No, wait. Contracts. Definitely Con (yawn) tracts…

Things I could have bought with the money wasted on textbooks that will conveniently not be taken back next year:

Two tickets to a Cubs game (bleacher seats), including Ticketmaster fees
A small jet
Seats on the NYSE
Any minor league professional sports team
Season tickets (first base side) to the Chicago White Sox for the next 30 years
One Bears PSL, or two tickets to any Bears game (end zone), not including Ticketmaster fees

On Campus Interviewing (a/k/a OCI):

Unlike Jeremy, who was a full-time student last year, I was a full-time employee of a major corporation. Occasionally the boss came rolling around (ala Lumbergh of Office Space) at 4:15. Now, my normal work hours were 7:30 to 4:15, but you’d be hard pressed to find anyone who actually worked those hours. And more often than not, I’d get the late-afternoon surprise. It usually started out with, “Greg, you got a minute?”

Of course, in the world of my former employer, “a minute” was 30 minutes in normal, human time. “A couple of minutes” was basically the afternoon, and “what are you working on?” translated to “tell me what you’re doing, because I plan on taking you away from it for about six months”. “Special Project” translated to either “forget about seeing your six-year-old’s high school graduation,” or “get your resume ready, because if this thing tanks, you’re the scapegoat.” All this would be couched, of course, to appear as if it were an “opportunity,” though the only opportunity you’d get is the opportunity to be paid next week. Maybe.

All this meant that school took a back seat to work, and since it was tax season as well, school often came in third place. I wanted an ‘A’ in Legal Writing badly, so I put in a lot of effort in that class, but failed miserably in doing the same in Contracts and Civil Procedure. As a result, the grades last semester weren’t the greatest (but I did get that ‘A’). So…..for me OCI stands for One Chance In... [hell], which is about what chance I’ve got of getting a job next summer through OCI. Helllooo NALP guidelines!

Meet the Employers Night (MTEN):

This annual right in self-humiliation should be outlawed. My classmate and friend Gretchen summed it up best; when I told her that Anita, Tina and I compared interviewing to dating, Gretch opined that if that were true, then MTEN was the equivalent of three-minute dating, with the students playing the part of the desperate, loveless boys, hoping to attract one of the lovely ladies (employers) they’re sitting across from, and trying hard not to fuck it up. I had no hope of being interviewed by any of these firms; they all wanted people in the top 15% or better of the class, and I’m barely (for now) in the top half. Of course, my resume doesn’t say that. Nor does it mention my GPA. It does, however, mention the fact that I made the Dean’s list in the fall (a true fact). I’m a firm believer in don’t ask, don’t tell. It was fun telling all the employers my background (CPA, MBA with emphasis in finance and international business, ten years of tax work) and watching them drool with anticipation, especially the SEC guy. (I couldn’t keep up the charade with the SEC guy, thought, because he was actually very nice, and, like me, he’d changed careers in his thirties.)

Moot Court/Law Journal:

I think my school has these, but since I wasn’t invited to participate (as a part-time 1L, I wasn’t eligible for LJ), I can neither confirm nor deny their existence. I can however guess that they do exist, because Heather (who always gets what she wants) is on all of them (for her, that’s CLJ, PILJ, and Moot court). I believe the term justifiable homicide was invented for what should happen to bubbly, pert, former flight attendants who get all the breaks, then proceed to tell you about how hard they worked to get them (because, of course, they were not working a full-time job, or any job for that matter, but for some reason decided that they needed the part-time schedule anyway). I am so not bitter. Really.

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