Thursday, July 5, 2012

The irony of the 4th of July

The Fourth of July a day to celebrate our nation's freedom and independence. 

The irony in the Fourth for me is that it marked the "turning" point in my bar exam studying where I lose my freedom and independence. Many a mention has been made of the fact that after the Fourth of July is when we should start to really kick it into gear. That means that now? It's crunch time. Tomorrow is our last in-class lecture. Tomorrow is also my last day of work until July 31st. I've taken the next few weeks off to dedicate 8-10 hours a day to studying. Yes, it's going to be as fun as it sounds. On one hand, I really just want the whole stupid thing to be over, on the other hand, I feel like I need 10 more weeks instead of 2 and a half, to study everything they expect us to know. 

There are 13 subject areas on the bar exam. We've had a lecture for each of those, every one of which had a 15-40 page outline (one was 70 pages). On one hand, when I consider the fact that a 64% is "passing" in MN, I'm able to remain fairly calm. On the other hand, when I remember what happened with the LSAT (the law school admissions test) I find myself on the verge of a total panic attack. 

I "studied" for the LSAT, I took a brief prep course, I THOUGHT I was prepared... wrong. I don't recall what my exact score was, but I do recall it was 2-3 points below the low median for the law school I wanted to go to- WMCL. I hadn't taken enough practice tests, and I did not devote anywhere near the amount of time I should have. I crossed my fingers and applied to a few schools anyway. When wait list, and rejection letters began rolling in, I had a quarter life crisis. Do I take the LSAT again? Do I consider grad school? Then, late January 2009, I got the letter from WMCL: I was accepted. Lord knows how it happened, but it happened. I got admitted on a special program for people with low GPA's or LSATS, and spent the first few months of law school wondering if I really belonged there. If I could cut it. I ended up graduating with a good GPA, 2 Moot Court's on my resume, and a lot more confidence.

Bottom line: I never want to look back on a test and realize too late I could've done more. Are the next few weeks going to suck? Yes. But it's a few weeks versus having to take this damn test again....the thought alone makes me want to vomit. 

Moving on. M and I went to my uncle Mike's for the Fourth, and like the absent minded blogger that I am, I forgot my camera. We sat around on the patio, chatted, ate, and drank... per usual. 

M and I went home around 4:30 for a few hours before heading to my office to watch fireworks. Every year a bunch of people from the office sit on the rooftop balcony that overlooks the Mississippi for the fireworks show over St. Anthony Main. This year? NOBODY showed up, except M and myself, and my uncle Tom and aunt Pam. Tommy is a partner at the firm. Here's the view from the 25th floor: 
 We picked up some wine, raspberries, and cheese spread and crackers before heading up. Pam made crack cookies, as I called them. I think they were butterscotch chip cookies. I think I ate 10.
 We dragged conference room chairs out onto the deck (huge leather chairs) and the 4 of us sat and watched the fireworks. The best part? The fireworks we went for started at 10:00, but from 9:30-10:00 as you scanned the horizon, you could see the fireworks of every east suburban city for at least 20 miles in a 180 degree radius. It was incredible. Finally our show got underway.
 I could think of no better way to watch fireworks: free parking in my work ramp, sitting in a leather chairs, with a nice breeze (as you're bound to have 25 stories up), no bugs, and most importantly: no crowds. Call me a surly old curmudgeon, but crowds and parking give me such a headache.

I had the day off work, which meant instead of an 8 hour day followed by 4 hours of lecture, I just had 4 hours of lecture this morning. I got home and started to work on flashcards. It was then that I realized how nice it would be to be a cat: 
Rough life. TJ got need and bored and promptly stomped over to put a stop to my studying for a brief period:
Kitteh sez, "pay attenshun to meh."
In the same vein-TJ has mastered the face of indifference, exhibits 2:

 and 3:
 I feel like this post is the jankiest thing I've ever written. I seriously have re-read it 4 times and hate the way it flows, hate the words I chose, and feel like a high schooler could've come up with something wittier... but my brain is sleepy. I'm not feeling creative. I'm going to have to find something to write about between now and August otherwise all my "weekend update" or "what I've been up to lately" posts would look the same: me, cracked out on coffee, buried behind a stack of flashcards.




  1. you're on the home stretch, girlie!! I say we enjoy some post-bar exam wine on your deck, with our boys (the ones with hands, not paws) :)

  2. what a fabulous view of the fireworks! so beautiful!

  3. Came across your blog on MN bloggers - just wanted to say hi! Good luck studying for the bar! I have some friends doing the same right now.

    Have a great weekend!

  4. Don't mind me...catching up on blogs over here! Love your 4th on the rooftop. My office is actually in the North Loop, so a bunch of my co-workers did the same thing on our rooftop deck! Unfortunately I couldn't go, but it looked really fun!