Friday, March 13, 2009

Introduction to Josh and Incipient Weekending

About two months ago, an old friend of mine asked me to go this weekend with him and another two guys to Atlantic City. Now, at the time, I was wrapping up (without my knowledge that it was ending) a temporary gig doing document review. To those who don't know me, I suppose I should at least introduce myself to the point of saying that I am, technically, a lawyer. I got sworn in to the Bar in December of 2007 and was hired for a real gig a month-ish ago, with my new job starting in 10 more days. The economy is horrible for new lawyers, and there are many, many new lawyers. Something like 10,000 per year are pumped out by law schools. Usually, they are people like myself who did not know that they wanted to be a lawyer long before graduating college. Personally, I thought that I would attempt to make a living in art, first, and then tried (substitute) teaching. So I guess those who can, do, those who can't, teach, and those who can't teach go to law school. Actually, I could teach pretty well, but I didn't have the patience for administrators and parents as much as I did for the kids, who were usually pretty great (with the exceptions of the poorest and richest demographics of Montgomery County, Maryland)...I also didn't enjoy the whole teaching-to-the-test thing that's been going on for the last while, due to No Child Left Behind. I also had some talent for the art stuff but never had the necessary passion/craziness/addiction. So I became a lawyer.

If you read my posts, you'll find that I tend to think in tangents, digressing, ebbing and flowing back to the same point. I have ADD. Actually, I've got a few other learning disabilities, too. This has meant, over time, that I learned how to think in different channels from other people. Often, I'll arrive at a correct/insightful/surprising conclusion because of this. More often, I'll get distracted by something shiny. Law school was very, very difficult for me, but I got through. Passing the Bar wasn't anywhere near as hard as getting through three years of drudgery and forced formulaic thinking.

Anyways, there are new law schools opening up all the time, because a university can charge as much for each year of a law degree as any other graduate program, but with considerably less overhead. All you need are lecturers and lecture halls and a law library, as compared with, say, a steady stream of cadavers. I happened to go to a pretty good law school, William & Mary, ranked somewhere around 30th in the country. It should be getting a bit higher, actually, because they recently renovated/upgraded the law library. By recently, I mean during the 3 years of my time at the school. I had gone there largely because of how quiet and peaceful it was, and lived right next to the school, in graduate housing, and they went and started construction when I was about a semester in to my higher, higher education. Ah well. I should've gone to George Washington University, but I didn't like their campus and, you know, hindsight is 20/20, etc.

So yes, I have a new job and I'm looking forward to starting it. First, though, I'll be going with a few guys I know from back in the day (circa 1995) to Atlantic City. Is this a good idea when I had to ask my folks for a bridge loan? Simply put, no. I don't intend to put down more than $25, in terms of gambling, and will be sharing a room with three other guys who are also all in serious relationships. If I win, I'll play with my winnings, but I am not counting on winning. Never risk more than you're willing to lose. This is more about me spending some quality time with a best friend of the past, the one who invited me, than anything else. All the same, I feel guilty about doing anything without a steady paycheck, and I don't like that I'll be leaving my girl at home alone, even if it is just for a day.

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