Monday, January 29, 2007

Motorcycle Drive By

A few days ago, I discovered the wonder that is It's beautiful, if you have a college email address and your college subscribes it.

I've not had a lot of long-time friends in my life. My oldest friend I've had since I was 5 (pretty impressive, eh?), but past that, my oldest friend I keep much contact with is my wife, who's been my friend now since I was 18. I still count a good friend of mine, though we don't communicate much anymore. In high school we both went through rough break-ups at about the same time. We rocked out for several months to Third Eye Blind's self-titled album. Next time you go through a break-up (which I hope is never), listen to that album. I hate it when people say things like "It got me through some rough times," but this CD really did. Hehe, and I never really owned it.

I downloaded the whole album (minus "Jumper") from a few days ago, and I've been listening to it. I've also been thinking while I'm taking my finals (a dangerous thing to think about anything other than your next final, eh?), and I've gotten some new insights in life, I think, some peace about some choices I've made in life. About halfway through high school, I abandoned my group of friends and joined a new group. I've always felt kinda bad about it, but I realized tonight: Where were they when I went through the rough patch of life that is the second half of high school? The abandonment, I think, was mutual. I'd be lying if I said I didn't think about them, but I'd also be lying if I didn't say my life is a little bit better because I escaped.

Is that horrible?

The answer--no. Now I'm married to the most beautiful woman in the world, I'm doing something with my life via law school, and I've got plans. I've never before had plans, but now I do. Back then, I wanted to be a rock star. I think I always knew, though, that that would never work out. Now, though, I've got it all or I'm working on it. Although I'm not as close as I was to the guy who picked me up when I left my old friends, I remember our friendship fondly and want to catch up with him. Like Kenneth, Sean, and most supremely, mi esposa, Marcus has taught me that I'm a selfish prick.

Anybody need a best friend?

Wednesday, January 24, 2007

The Logicomastedon

I paused in my criminal law studying last night to go to sleep, and as I lay in bed waiting for the caffeine to disintegrate and let me sleep, I got to thinking. My caffeinated mind ran back to seventh grade and my first series of finals, and I realized: I love finals. I know, I know; estoy loco. But let me explain. I think the feeling is kinda like athletes feel before games. Not having any sports talent whatsoever, I have to take my athletics where I can get them: in the classroom.

I had a professor in college (who had been a Green Beret) who said that mastering logic was like learning how to kill somebody with your hands. Killing somebody with your hands means that you don't need any weapons and that your opponent's weapons don't matter. Mastering logic, similarly, lets you fight an opponent without having any prior knowledge of the subject matter.

I've been trying to master logic since I was 7 years old and watching my dad play logic puzzles. I haven't mastered it yet, and each day in law school is another lesson in how little I know, but the exams--o que bella! You learn all the rules so that you have your major premises. Then you take the facts (which are minor premises) and you get it on. What's that? You intended to cut his arm off and he died from blood loss from the big hole in his shoulder? (Whirs and squeaks as the Logicomastedon does its work.) Ding--§19.02(b)(2) murder.

See? I just killed you with my hands. (Ding--§19.02(b)(1) murder.)

Did I really just write that?

Sunday, January 21, 2007

Why Contracts Rocks

1. The irony that the most capitalistic field of law is abbreviated "K," the letter that for some reason always conjures images of Karl Marx, his komrades, and kommunism. (Maybe it's Das Kapital.)

2. Williston v. Corbin.

3. The U.C.C.

4. Making money rocks.

5. In re Baby M.

6. Prof. K = foosball master

7. Lastly, contract law punishes hypocrisy. Do what you said you'd do, and nobody gets hurt. Gotta love it.

Saturday, January 20, 2007

Here we go again . . .

I'm (still) getting Newsweek, even though my subscription ended at the end of October. This week's issue has a little article on curricular reform at Harvard. It seems Harvard's Task Force on General Education has decided to require students to take classes on religion. One science professor's response: "There is an enormous constituency of people who would hold that faith and reason are two routes to knowledge. It is a mistake to affirm that. It's like having a requirement of 'Astronomy & Astrology'. They're not comparable topics." If you didn't know already, this is one of my pet peeves.

Faith, at its essence, is believing something (anything) even though you have to make certain assumptions for which you have no basis. The classic example is religion. An equally good example is science. Scientists will be the first to recognize that they make assumptions they can't prove and that they base these assumptions on reason or experience. But how do we really know either of those is worth anything? I'm not trying to say science is worthless; I'm trying to say that I'm sick and tired of arrogant scientists thinking they know everything. Every reasonable person knows or should know that lawyers have the monopoly on knowledge. Duh.

Am I a nihilist?

Friday, January 19, 2007

Silence is Golden

I feel bad that it's been so long since I posted on here. My readership of 3 probably dropped to 1. (And he's got to keep checking--he's Milwaukee. That's what he does.) Speaking of Milwaukee . . . I was just reading about how Reagan and Ford considered a Reagan-Ford ticket in 1980. One of the great partnerships that never was. Well, Milwaukee and I were almost moot court partners. Someone had a prior claim on me, but it would have been the greatest ever--ChiWaco. Oh well, I guess T-Square and I will have to stomp Milwaukee and his new partner, leaving him like the fire of 1871. Bam.

In other news--the Bravest Bear commented on my last post something to the effect that liberals get more and more closed-minded as conservatives argue less and less on facts. It's an interesting theory and largely true (sadly). I thought it was worth airing next to my favorite defense when I argue with my dad about Republicans: "A conservative under 30 has no heart, but a liberal over 30 has no brain."*

Anybody know who? I'll give you a hint . . .

*Note--Remember the source and the fact that I am under 30. The quote does not apply to any professors at Baylor Law School, especially those who grace me with grades.

Friday, January 05, 2007

An Evolutionist Evolves

I usually stay away from metablogging*, but I read a very interesting article in Newsweek. The article talks about an evolutionist marrying a creationist and how it changed her stereotype of creationists. I fall somewhere between an evolutionist and a creationist, because I don't think they're mutually exclusive. (In fact, I find some evidence of evolution even in the Bible, but that's for a different day.) The real reason I posted a link to the article is because it offers me hope. Our nation has fallen into this rut of closed-mindedness, both among liberals and among conservatives. The problem has fallen more heavily on liberals because many don't even recognize their own closed-mindedness. We can't all marry people with diametrically opposite beliefs, but we can at least try to be friends with them and refuse to condemn their beliefs, even if we don't think they deserve merit.

* Metablogging is blogging is about blogs or other internet media.

Thursday, January 04, 2007

You Can't Always Get What You Want

So last night, I finished my third book of Christmas Break: John Grisham's The Partner. I've grown a little tired of the hypertech thrillers à la Dan Brown (especially Deception Point)*, and while this book wasn't so bad about the hypertech, it wasn't free of it either. The story, however, is an interesting story. A junior partner at a law firm in Mississippi steals $90 million (fraudulently obtained in a lawsuit against the federal government) and deposits himself in Brazil. He's found and tortured, but he still comes back to the win the day. (I hope that's not too big a spoiler . . .)

The best parts about the book were two major ones: the last chapter (adds a whole new level of depth to an otherwise characteristically Grisham book) and the inner struggle in the reader to decide whether you like the protagonist or not. Toward the end, Grisham seems to test you: Did you give up and condemn Mr. Lanigan? It's an enjoyable book, but I'd only give it a 3 out of 5.

Other than that, the book indulges Grisham's old escapist dreams, much like The Firm (I highly recommend that one) and The Street Lawyer.

* Note--I really like Dan Brown's novels, I admit it. And the second his new novel hits the shelves, I'm on it. If it ever hits the shelves . . .