Wednesday, February 05, 2003

A day at the office......
I was sitting at my desk when the phone rang. It was John, a classmate.
“Hey, how’s it goin?”
Hey John, what’s up?” I was trying to book a journal entry; John’s timing wasn’t great right now.
“Hey, I’m on my way to Palos.”
John had emailed me that he was going to go to Palos, from there to Evanston, and from there to downtown, for class. I’d told him to wave hi to my parents, since they lived in Palos. If he hadn’t said that he was on a tight schedule, I would have told him to stop by and see if Mom had any food for me. I looked at the little clock on top of my computer. It was 3:30.
“ON YOUR WAY? You’re not there yet?”
“No. but I’m close. I’m on One-twenty-seven street.” He said it just like that. One. Twenty. Seven. Not ‘a hundred and twenty-seventh’, but one-twenty-seven. Strange. “Hey, so I called you because I’ll be driving in tonight, and I wanted to know the parking places. I figured you’d know them all.”
“Well, there’s 111 East Chestnut, it’s two blocks down the street from school, it’s heated and it’s eight bucks with validation.”
“Two blocks from school?”
“Yeah right down the street.”
“I thought Chestnut was East-West, like Pearson?”
“It is. The garage entrance is on Pearson, but the main entrance to the condos is on Chestnut, so they call it 111 East Chestnut, even though it’s on Pearson. Don’t ask.”
“Okay. Because I’m gonna be cutting it close. I’ve got to go from here to Evanston.”
“Evanston? You’re still going there?”
“Yeah. What’s the best way to get downtown?”
“Well, your best bet is to go west on McCarthy, and north on LaGrange to the Stevenson.”
“I was thinking of heading back to the Ryan.”
“No. Too long. Too many lights. LaGrange is faster, trust me.”
“I don’t know. Is it fast? I don’t want to go 35.”
“No, no. It’s forest preserve there. It’s 55.”
“Oh wait. I just crossed 294. I could take that, couldn’t I?”
“Yeah, you could. But the exit to the Stevenson is west of LaGrange.”
“Yeah but I’d be doing 65 a lot sooner.”
“You’re still going to Evanston?”
”Yeah, I need to be there by 4:30.”
”No way. Not a chance. It takes an hour on a good day from my parents to Evanston, and you’re on your way to a meeting. Where are you now?”
”Central.” It was pushing 3:45. By the time he got to the bank met the trust administrator, then drove to Evanston, he’d be lucky if it were 6.
“No way John… way.”
”Yeah.” A long pause. “You might be right.”

Tuesday, February 04, 2003

Well, it was fun while it lasted....

The heatwave is over. Not that it was much fun. Sure, the temps go up to the 40's but it was rainy, damp and foggy all day yesterday, and for a good chunk of Saturday and Sunday. So what good was it, anyway.

Now we're back into the deep freeze, with wind chills expected to hit 2 degrees tonight. I live for summer. It seems to go by way too fast, and days like these linger way too long. YUCK!


Tonight's a big night. The Legal Writing Research Memo is due, and, supposedly, we find out who is and isn't going to Rome and/or Oxford. I signed up for both, but wound up third on the waiting list for Oxford. Actually, the sign-up was on the first workday of the month, always a big day for us accountants, so I couldn't go. I lamented as such to my father, who's retired now, and to my surprise, he volunteered to go wait in line if necessary. Fortunately, my classmate Tim (who just walked by, for anyone who cares) works in the computer lab. So I gave him my number and told him to call me if there was a line. I told my dad not to worry - there probably wouldn't be a line before 3:00, or two hours before sign ups began. Boy, was I wrong. Tim called at 10:30, saying he was 40th in line. I called my dad, and he raced the 40 miles downtown. Not only did he wind up 62nd, but he somehow became a benchmark for everyone. If you talk to any evening student about going to Europe, they all seem to gauge their chances by where they were in relation to my dad. "I was three people behind Greg's dad, how about you?" I haven't told him yet. I'm sure he'll get a laugh.'s 6:45. Time to go to class. More later, if I don't join the others at the Wrightwood Tap.

Monday, February 03, 2003


You’re kidding, right?

In other news:

I see Barbie lost her law suit. Ken won’t be anatomically correct anytime soon as a result. Seems that Mattel, using the biblical defense, said that Immaculate Conception was working just fine. How else do you explain the girl Barbies? G.I. Joe? Forget it. All brawn. Those years of ‘roids shrank ‘em like raisins, kids.

Ok, so I’m a bit behind the times. I just saw Brobeck, Phleger & Harrison announced they’re folding. Who? Just read the article. It’s a good lesson on short-sightedness, and how money clouds people’s judgment, even those smart enough to know better. I guess Tower Snow (that’s his real name!) slept through bankruptcy class.

I met the new neighbors this past week. That was fun. It wasn’t intentional, mind you. I saw shoes outside of the apartment (I don’t know what it is, but EVERYONE in this building, save me, puts their shoes outside their doors. What? You people never heard of throw rugs? Remnants? Sure, the carpet’s white, but… oh, never mind). Anyway, I thought the shoe’s looked like Mike and Amy’s, the old neighbors who moved at the beginning of the year. But I was thrown, because, although I’ve seen him since, I thought he mentioned his lease expired the 24th. And this was the 27th, 28th – something like that. Curious, I knocked. And a woman answered. But not Amy. Someone else.

But hey, I’m a law student. Surely I’ll come up with something intelligent, right? Right?

“Oh. Hi. So you’ve moved in?

There’s a brilliant start. Turns out she’s a radiology student, and he’s from Lancaster, PA, which I know because my company has a HQ there, plus a huge chunk of my family hails from Pennsylvania. They seem nice. I doubt they’ll talk to me again. C’est la vie.

My Legal Writing instructor emailed me on Thursday and said my paper wouldn’t print. Asked if I could send a different format. Based on her email, I didn’t think it would work, because it sounded like the problem was at her end. So I told her to call me. This morning, she emailed me that it printed fine, and that I could pick up comments tonight, so I did. And boy did she comment. I thought it was a crappy paper, and her comments went in that direction. Fortunately, I spent yesterday trashing and rewriting. But I still have some work to do tomorrow at lunch. I’ll have to skip out early, too, and finish before class.

I think I’m getting a cold. Crap.

Moxie (link above) decided she’s no longer going to write about her relationships. I wish I had that problem.

I missed Joe Millionaire again. Went to contracts class instead. Gretchen skipped class to work on her paper. Wonder if she watched it? Hmm….

My weekend is fully booked, and it’s only Monday. And none of it is homework-related. This may be a problem.

Sunday, February 02, 2003

This morning came way too quickly. Weekends, precious as they are, go by so fast, I hardly notice them. Before I know it, it’s Monday, and I’m praying for the relief of the weekend.

Weekends are my time for sleep; during the week, my day usually begins around 5:00a.m. when I get up and head to the health club. Work starts at 7:30, which gives me time for a quick workout, shower, and (usually) breakfast. Since I only live a mile or so from work I usually come home for an hour at lunch. Then it’s back to work until 4:30, or on a good day 4:00. From work, I have the pleasure of an hour trip to downtown Chicago. If it’s a good day, I get time to relax and enjoy a meal. If it’s a bad day, I get whatever I can ‘to go’ (or ‘take away’ as the Brits would say). Class goes until 9, at which time I either hop in the car (if I drove), or on the shuttle bus (if I took the train). I finally drag myself back in the door sometime between 10 and 10:30. With some wind-down time, I usually crawl into bed sometime around 11 or 11:30.

This routine makes for both a long week, and a quick week. Long, because right now, Friday night (the only night I don’t have class) seems SO far away; quick, because it’ll be here before I realize, and I have to hope that I get everything done that I need to, because once Monday starts, the week seems like a blur.

This is what every CPA calls “Tax Season”, as if there was such a thing. The period between January 1 and April 15 is the most insane time of year if you’re an accountant. It’s the time of reckoning for people who’ve done everything you’ve told them not to. Tell them not to touch that IRA money, and they’ll take it out. Tell them not to buy or sell the same type of stock within 30 days (lest they violate the wash sale rule) and guess what? Hey, c’mon, it was bound to go up, right? I got a hot tip!

Usually, I spend two nights a week and Saturday at a small CPA firm. The other nights, I might go into the office, or I might head out to work on a friend’s tax return. The latter puts me into the class my boss at the firm derogatorily calls “kitchen table preparers.” Either way, it’s extra money that allows me to go on vacation, buy more CDs, a new VCR, or, in the Laura days, take her out for a night on the town, drinks in the Hancock included. Hey, what’s $130 when you spend the night looking into the eyes of someone you think is wonderful? A shitload when she dumps you a few months later, that’s what.

Anyway, law school has disrupted this lovely routine. I can’t go in the office two nights a week; I’m in school four. That leaves Friday night and Saturday. I can’t do Sunday as well – I need to do homework sometime. And laundry. And clean the apartment. And…..all those friends who are asking me to do their tax work.

Right now, I feel like I’m at the bottom of a mountain looking up. I spent all day today writing a research memo; I didn’t read a whit of Civil Procedure or Contracts. That’s ok to some extent – I’m ahead on the reading in both. But next Saturday is totally shot, and my sister called me and told me to be over her house on Sunday for my oldest nephews birthday dinner. I’m staring at about 10 shirts that need to be ironed, and a week’s worth of laundry will build up before I blink. Not to mention homework, and….yes, I promised my friend Cathi that I’d do their taxes next week.

Sigh. Only 74 more days until April 15th. Unless I start doing extensions.