Sunday, November 28, 2010

Finally Finals

First off, fuckitall.

That's not a conglomerate word, but the name of the medication that I am taking to deal with finals.

Fuck this shit.

To hell with eloquence, irony, and humor. I just flat out hate finals. I hate finals almost as much as I hate the people who made the decision to cancel Firefly. And I really hate those people.

The only picture of a firefly on the internet.

I might offer some tips as finals come along, but I really one have one: Figure out your drink of choice and drink a lot of it after your exams. My drink is whiskey on the rocks, so none of you can take that.

A picture of me, whiskey, and the artful seduction of a sexy lady.
There is no way of getting around finals. Well, not unless you are sleeping with the teacher, then there is a way to get around finals. I am not sleeping with any of my profs, so I will not be getting out of finals this semester.

However, finals time is not all bad. There's a certain holiday that follows the end of finals that is guaranteed to raise everyone's spirits: Christmas

Santa drinks whiskey cokes. Why do you think he's so merry?
It's finally the Christmas season anyhow. It really has nothing to do with thanksgiving having gone by. It has everything to do with hearing Feliz Navidad and Last Christmas. Once you hear those, it is officially Christmas time.

Try not to sing the song after you hear it. I dare you.
It's also almost Hanuka, or Hanukka, or Hanukkah, or Chanuka, or Chanuckah, which is equally fun because I love throwing/attending Hanuka parties! I don't care if it's not a high holiday or a holiday which I observe- it's a reason to party. I threw a Chanuka party in undergrad and it was probably the greatest party ever thrown.

Not a dreidel.
Bottom line: don't let finals get you down. You probably have a reason to party after all of this finals nonsense is concluded, so just chill out and don't let finals get you down.

Thursday, November 25, 2010

The First Thanksgiving

Holycraparoni! It's Thanksgiving!

It's time to roast a Detroit Lion and root for the Turkeys to win!

Thanksgiving means more than football and eating, despite what everyone wants you to believe. It means that Grads and Undergrads alike have final exams coming up. That being the case, why the hell are you reading my blog? Get back to studying, football watching, or eating.

But since I love you, I will continue on, and tell you the story of the The First Thanksgiving.

Thanksgiving started in 1934 when the Detroit Lions played the World Champion Chicago Bears. The 1934 Lions had not allowed a touchdown until their eighth game and entered the game with the Bears with a 10-1 record. Chicago had an even better record, however, having won 11 strait. 

An epic battle ensued. The Bears ended up edging out the Lions 19-16 in the classic holiday struggle and then prevailed 10-7 three days later to clinch the NFL Western Division.

But the story does not end there. Legend has it that a very young John Madden was in attendance of that game, and that when he saw how well the Bears played, he offered them the very first Thankgiving Day Turducken*, which to this day is the official food of Thanksgiving. Da Bears and John Madden then shared the feast, and the tradition of Thanksgiving was thus established.

*Turducken is an abomination unto God. It consists of a 6 legged Turkey stuffed with a Duck stuffed with a Chicken stuffed with the pain and suffering of all viciously displaced indigenous peoples. Its decadent taste can only be ascribed to the hedonism that Satan promises to all of those who tread his unholy path. To taste the flesh of the Godless anathema is to submit ones sole to eternal damnation and engorgement.

Monday, November 15, 2010

TV Lawyers who are not Ally McBeal or Jack McCoy

I love TV lawyers.

Smart, dashing, witty, attractive; those are just words that describe me. TV lawyers are like that also.

They are everything that real lawyers aspire to be, but it's more than that. While TV lawyers are role models for lawyer and layman alike, they also serve to show that real lawyers are just like real people in many respects. Indeed, TV lawyers humanize real lawyers for everyone.

Like all things, however, a few TV lawyers stand above the rest. These select few either show us what we want to be, show us what we can be, or show us what we are, and do it better than any other lawyers on television.

The following is my (very) short list of my top TV lawyers who are not Ally McBeal or Jack McCoy.

Barney Stinson
There are few TV lawyers that epitomize the lawyer ideal, and even fewer who can do it better than Barney Stinson of TV's "How I Met Your Mother" (hereinafter "HIMYM"). Barney is a hard working, hard drinking, hard womanizing suit wearing man -He's like the James Bond of law. I am personally considering taking this fictional character on as my personal role model, as he is everything that a young man practicing law should want to be.

Andy Griffith went from small town cop to big city criminal defense attorney.

Matlock is great not because he is a fictional law-dispensing God, but because he is based off of a real life (that's right, the "RL") law-dispensing God, Bobby Lee Cook (hereinafter "RL Matlock"). RL Matlock lived in a small town outside of Atlanta, GA, and rose to fame by defending the worst of the worst south of the Mason-Dixon line. RL Matlock's first major criminal defense involved very unpopular client (presumably a murdering pedophile muckraking yankee). During his first defense, the local townspeople would ask RL Matlock why he was defending this SOB, and he would expound on the constitution, the right to a fair trial, innocent until proven guilty. You and I don't buy that, and neither did the townspeople. During his second  major criminal defense (presumably defending a damn Sherman loving pedophile murderer), the local townspeople asked RL Matlock why he was defending this particular SOB. He explained that it was because this SOB was paying him an obscene sum of money to defend him. The local townspeople found that to be just fine, as should you and I.

Harvey T. Birdman
"I'll take the case!"
Harvey Birdman is both a lawyer and a superhero, not unlike Dare Devil. Unlike Dare Devil, Harvey Bridman has full use of all of his senses, which makes him a preferable superhero/lawyer role model for vision-loving Americans. Not unlike Matlock, Birdman fills the role of criminal defense attorney. Unlike Matlock, he also serves as a civil defense attorney. Not unlike Barney Stinson, Birdman wears a suit. Unlike Stinson, Birdman is a cartoon. Harvey T. Birdman also shows the more human side of lawyers; he has real problems and has triumphs and disappointments. He falls in and out of love and suffers real heartbreak as a result. He does not win them all, but he always does as best as he can for all of his clients.

In many respects, Birdman is the most real of all TV lawyers.

Sunday, November 7, 2010

Why God Hates Us: Part I

Nothing renews ones faith in God quite like hearing an atheist scream, “Oh God! Yes!”

So it was with renewed faith, vim, and vigor that I rekindled my passing love of theology. When it comes to theology, I like to avoid the obvious question of Why Are We Here and approach the far more practical question of Why Does God Hates Us?

Now, there are a lot of reasons that God can hate us. There may be classical reasons, such as eating forbidden fruit, worshiping false idols, or dining on shellfish. See The Bible. There may also be more modern reasons for drawing the Almighty’s ire, such as gays in the military, immigrants, or being Haitian. See Generally Pat Robertson.

It was with the aforementioned in mind that I approached my spiritual guide, who is cryptically named Padre, with my query of why Jehovah was no longer jovial. After reminding me that in Latin, Jehovah starts with an “I”, Padre went on to explain to my why He-Who-Is-Called-I-Am is currently hating us.

But perhaps some prologue is in order. After all, just saying God hates us is pretty ambiguous unless one knows how the hate manifests itself.

So first, let me assure you that no one was turned into a pillar of salt. I seriously doubt that God would ever do this again as it would be particularly gauche, especially considering our nation’s collectively high blood pressure.

Let me also say that the manifestation of God’s divine prissiness did not involve any pains associated with child birth. Contrary to popular dogmatic belief, birth pains are not God’s punishment upon women for Eve taking a bite of the forbidden fruit. God’s punishment is actually that women will forever make 75 cents to every $1 a man makes.

Men actually refer to these as glass floors.
The particular manifestation of God’s wrath which I write about is perhaps the most insidious manifestation one can imagine: A Law School Course That Shall Go Unnamed. I will not name the course on the *very* off chance that the professor that teaches the course will somehow hear of my silly blorg and take offense to me calling their course an insidious form of divine punishment.

I hesitate to say that “words cannot describe how boring this course is,” because it is the job of words to describe things, even if the descriptions are not very good. So, if I may proffer a poor description of how boring this course is: the course is like Star Trek Voyager before it got Seven-of-Nine; boring as fuck.

Of couse, after Voyager got 7 of 9 it was still boring as fuck, but at least viewers got to stare at her massive weapons of assimilation.
With this level of boredom at the forefront of my mind, the only conclusion to be drawn was that God hated us. The following conversation in that boring as hell class took place, in which the story of why God hates us was handed down from the Padre:

Spee Ipsa:  there is no God
Spee Ipsa:  I lied, there is a God, and he hates us
Padre:  He is teaching us a lesson
Spee Ipsa: what lesson would that be?
Padre: It was don't dress up and go out for Halloween just to look at drunk young women wearing no clothes
Spee Ipsa: Damnit!
Spee Ipsa: IF god didn't want me to look at scantily clad hot women, then why did god invent hot scantily clad women?
Padre:  he didn't... see he messed up. Let me elaborate
Spee Ipsa:  continue, please
Padre:  See, God made women but he forgot to give them a brain.... they were innocent and na├»ve, still perfect, however. They were like blank slates...
Spee Ipsa:  I like these women
Padre: …Or kind of like silly puddy
Spee Ipsa: …maybe not as silly puddy. But what happened, Padre?
Padre:  then God made man... this lead to the creation of the sports car.
Spee Ipsa: …go on…
Padre: See women loved the sports car because it was pretty just like them. They wanted these sports cars but they clearly had no way to obtain them...
Spee Ipsa: Why couldn’t they obtain them
Padre: They had no jobs because they had no real skills of any kind… remember how they have no brains?
Spee Ipsa: I had forgotten
Padre:  Plus they wore turtle necks at that time so men had no interest.
…Eventually women realized that if they took off their clothes, exposing themselves and painted their faces, highlighting there positive feature, they could gain man's interest.
Spee Ipsa: and this helped how?
Padre:  If they had man's interest they could ride in the sports car.
After generations of sports car hungry breading it became a way of life
eventually sports car were not even needed.... women just wanted attention at that point.
Spee Ipsa: So we have had sports cars since the inception of man?
Padre:  yes we have had sports cars for around 4000 years
Spee Ipsa:  This is fascinating
Padre:  and now you have today....
Spee Ipsa:  but what has drawn God’s ire?
Padre:  God is still pissed off that he forgot to put in women's brains.
Spee Ipsa: …Ok…
Padre:  But he is God.  He is a proud man, and he doesn't want to admit it’s his fault.
Padre:  So every Halloween when he sees man take advantage of women he gets pissed off
Padre: ... sadly for his own mistake.
Spee Ipsa: and this is why God is making us go to this boring as hell class?
Padre: exactly.

So there you have it. Like the initial fall of man, it is woman’s fault that God hates us and makes us take boring law courses. Way to go, ladies.

Way. To. Go.

Wednesday, November 3, 2010

Election Reactions, Blood on the Ballot

GARY, IN – Over 30,000 young people across the nation were slain after they cast their ballots for various government seats yesterday when activist group Citizen Change’s “Vote and Die” campaign of persuading young people to vote reached its goal of murdering a full 1/100 of American voters.

Citizen Change leader, Percival Diddy, applauded the massacre. “This was unequivocally a success for all of us. Our democracy cannot function without an educated citizenry who actively participate in the electoral process.” Mr. Diddy added with regard to the young adult voters, “These youths, nay, these youthful adults who matriculated in and voted and died for their political right to vote are what make American government work, and not the crooks they elect.”

Not everyone was pleased with the high voter turn-out/murder rate.

“Oh God, so many voters, so much blood,” said a local election official who asked not to be named. “All of those poor people. If only- if they had just stayed home- oh God, why would anybody do this? Why would anybody ever vote? None of the candidates were even worth the shit you wipe off your shoe before you come into elementary school/voting center.”

Across Indiana and the rest of the nation, local election officials have reported a record turnout of voters.
“We had people lined up and being shot from the opening of our boots at 6 a.m. until the closing of polls at 6 p.m.” said a Mary J. Blige, a Cairo, Illinois volunteer helper at the Cairo Elementary School voting center. “To see all of these people –especially the youths –here and voting, it really makes me proud to be an American.”
Ms. Blige then proceeded to clean off the blood from her machete, stepped into her Porsche, and drove back to Los Angeles.

Monday, November 1, 2010

Finals Preparation

Happy day after Halloween!

The day after Halloween, or November 1st as it is colloquially called, is the most important day of the year. It is the day that it becomes officially unacceptable to start playing Christmas music in Walmart.

But the acceptability of Christmas, or X-mas as it is colloquially called, music before Thanksgiving is a rant for another day.

I have a much more interesting topic on which I plan on typing. As the title of this post may have betrayed, I will be typing on finals preparation.

Preparing for final exams is a multi-step process that is as important as it is painful; that is to say, very. The preparatory process is really the only way to ensure that you have a shot of not failing out of school. Don't plan on excelling, just plan on surviving.

If you were a "diligent student", you have been OUTLINING all semester long. If you're not this fictitious "diligent student", you don't even look at your notes after you take them. Well, you are in luck, because the onset of November gives you a reason to look at them: the reason is you don't want to fail out of school. So you need to outline your notes. You can do this by looking at all the stupid shit you wrote and digging out the few nuggets of worthwhile information (Rules of law, hypotheticals, fact patterns) and putting them into a well-organized document. This document should be a cliche road-map of the course.

Now that you've spent probably 12 hours outlining, you will need to SYNTHESIZE your outline, also known as Outlining 2.0. Synthesizing is pretty much taking your monstrosity that is an outline and making it so that it is understandable. THIS STEP IS ACTUALLY ESSENTIAL. Not only will your Synthesized outline, or Synthline, help you study when it is complete, but the process of creation will help you learn the law that you haven't learned all semester.

After you have this synthesis for each course, you should strongly consider studying a lot. I can expound on study habits at a later date.

But before I end this post, I'm going to toss an idea out there to add another step to the process that will hopefully ensure that passing grade. Personally, I like to CREATE FLASHCARDS to help me study. These pocket sized treasure troves of law should probably be done in Question Front/Answer Back format and Rule of Law Front / Rule Elements Back format. If you do this, and you drill them, you will learn the law and you will go confidently into your exams.