Tuesday, July 29, 2008

A Trend?

Dude, what's up with the police thinking they don't have to follow the same rules and laws as the rest of us? Like not parking in a no-parking zone to go get take-out and paying for Starbucks?

Monday, July 28, 2008

This Is It.

I take the first portion of the bar exam today. There is a queasy feeling in my stomach that I have not felt before a test since my junior year and college. There was always one class that could put me in a mild panic before an exam, mostly because I knew that it was always entirely possible that I would not know how to do anything on the test.

Ah, the memories of Organic Chemistry.

I passed that class with two As and a B+. Hopefully that bodes well for the bar exam...

Thursday, July 24, 2008

Mmm, Ethics

I wonder if it says something about me that the one bar subject I loathe the most, the one bar subject that I most avoid studying, the one subject I skipped the lecture for is...

...Professional Responsibility, i.e., legal ethics.

My dislike for studying this subject is no doubt due to the fact that I already took a standardized test that was completely and exclusively about the Model Rules for Professional Responsibility and I'm not too excited about being tested again. (Haven't I already proved to you people that I know the rules? That I'm ethical? Damn you!)

But there's another reason I dislike the subject—the language of the rules. Seriously, whoever wrote them was intentionally being obtuse, I swear. I always find myself rewriting the rules so that I can actually understand them. For instance, I give you Rule 1.18, the duties a lawyer owes to prospective clients:

(c) A lawyer subject to paragraph (b) shall not represent a client with interests materially adverse to those of a prospective client in the same or a substantially related matter if the lawyer received information from the prospective client that could be significantly harmful to that person in the matter, except as provided in paragraph (d). If a lawyer is disqualified from representation under this paragraph, no lawyer in a firm with which that lawyer is associated may knowingly undertake or continue representation in such a matter, except as provided in paragraph (d).

d) When the lawyer has received disqualifying information as defined in paragraph (c), representation is permissible if:
(1) both the affected client and the prospective client have given informed consent, confirmed in writing, or:
(2) the lawyer who received the information took reasonable measures to avoid exposure to more disqualifying information than was reasonably necessary to determine whether to represent the prospective client; and
(i) the disqualified lawyer is timely screened from any participation in the matter and is apportioned no part of the fee therefrom; and
(ii) written notice is promptly given to the prospective client.


Ugh. Gross. I chose to rewrite it as such:

If a prospective client told you something juicy, you can’t later represent someone in the same or substantially related matter if the juicy info would hurt the prospective client. Your firm associates can represent the new client if you’re screened.

See how much better that is? And how much shorter? I did it with Rule 1.10, too.

Real rule:
(a) While lawyers are associated in a firm, none of them shall knowingly represent a client when any one of them practicing alone would be prohibited from doing so by Rules 1.7 or 1.9, unless the prohibition is based on a personal interest of the prohibited lawyer and does not present a significant risk of materially limiting the representation of the client by the remaining lawyers in the firm.

(b) When a lawyer has terminated an association with a firm, the firm is not prohibited from thereafter representing a person with interests materially adverse to those of a client represented by the formerly associated lawyer and not currently represented by the firm, unless:
(1) the matter is the same or substantially related to that in which the formerly associated lawyer represented the client; and
(2) any lawyer remaining in the firm has information protected by Rules 1.6 and 1.9(c) that is material to the matter.


My rewrite:
If you can’t represent someone under Rules 1.7 or 1.9, then no on in your firm can represent them either, unless the conflict was personal and there’s no significant risk of limited representation.

If you leave a firm and take your client with you, your old firm can represent a new client with materially adverse interests, unless the clients are involved in the same or substantially related matter and there are lawyers still at the firm who have protected information.


They really should pay me for this. Better yet, this should count towards my pro bono hours. (See Rule 6.1.)

Wednesday, July 23, 2008

Anticipation

I don't know if I've ever looked forward to something as much as I'm looking forward the two and a half weeks after the bar exam and before I start work. In my mind they are going to be so jam-packed with fun it's insane. I have these grand fantasies of how wonderful all the things I want to do will turn out.

Something tells me it will all end up to be disappointing (all except Jen's wedding of course).

Finito

I. Can't. Study. Anymore.

(But of course I will. It's just so darned hard...)

Monday, July 21, 2008

Distractions

I found something in my room today. Hidden under the bed. Something that belongs to my sister that I didn't know she had.



Damn it. I thought she only had books one through four and I was going to stop after book five (which I borrowed from a friend) because I really should be studying for the bar instead of reading novels.

Sunday, July 20, 2008

Ewwwwww—The Pursuit of Teen Girl Purity

I'm sorry, but I'm going to have to agree with the critics. This is creepy. And very disturbing to me on a deeper level.

I know the whole father-daughter purity thing is probably coming from a good place, but haven't we moved beyond the point in history where daughters are viewed, not as individuals, but property of their fathers until they get married and become the property of their husbands?

When Kylie was 13, her parents took her on a hike in Lake Tahoe, Calif. "We discussed what it means to be a teenager in today's world," she says. They gave her a charm for her bracelet--a lock in the shape of a heart. Her father has the key. "On my wedding day, he'll give it to my husband," she explains. "It's a symbol of my father giving up the covering of my heart, protecting me, since it means my husband is now the protector. He becomes like the shield to my heart, to love me as I'm supposed to be loved."

"My husband is now the protector?" Gross. Gag me. You're not a rag doll, Kylie, protect your own heart for godssake.

How about instead of treating daughters like chattel that have to be guarded because they can't be trusted to think for themselves, you teach them how to do it themselves? This entire concept is premised on the idea that girls have to be protected.

And where are the boys? Are we just going to shame these girls into thinking that any sexual experience outside of marriage is dirty and wrong, but give the boys a free pass? It reminds me of the old Dolly Parton song Just Because I'm A Woman:

Yes, I've made my mistakes
But listen and understand
My mistakes are no worse than yours
Just because I'm a woman
.

Dolly was trying to make the point that it's ridiculous and unfair to paint sexually active girls as dirty whores but to say nothing about the boys they're getting busy with. I think there's an element of that in this purity concept thing, too. It takes two to tango, people. And it's offensive to assume that women are the servient gender in terms of will and desire. Newsflash, gentlemen—sometimes girls genuinely want to have sex. And that doesn't make them bad.

Call me a radical feminist, but this article is hella disturbing to me. (And all these people agree.)

Wednesday, July 16, 2008

Oh The Pain

My best friend told me the other day that she feels about Rihanna the way I feel about Carrie Underwood. It hurt. It really hurt.

(I have a girl crush on Rihanna. And before you start saying "Girl crush? What are you, a lesbian?" you should be advised that it is a well-documented phenomena and there's nothing weird about it. Jerks.)

(Who doesn't like Rihanna, anyway?!?!?!?)

Ah, Television

I did my bar exam studying in front of the television today, and before you all start saying "Whoa, Litigious Mind, that doesn't sound like a good idea," I suggest you hold your tongues. Why? Because it was Law and Order I watched and it just so happens that I got a lot of great studying in.

First, I reviewed some Criminal Law by deciding whether all members of a suburban militia group were guilty of conspiracy when three members held up an armored car. And I got to hear Jack McCoy talk about an "overt act." Awesome. In that same episode I also got to consider whether a jury can infer guilty from silence when a defendant takes the stand, is asked if he committed a crime, and invokes the Fifth Amendment. I'm pretty sure the answer is hells yes!

Next, I reviewed common law murder by deciding whether doctors who let a sales rep operate a laser electrolyte machine (I don't know what it was, I went to law school, not med school, damn it) on a patient during surgery were guilty of murder when the lady died. (Depraved indifference! Conscious disregard!) I leaned towards no, and so did the TV judge. But helllloooo criminally negligent homicide! And then one of the doctors killed himself and the DA got his attorney to testify about a quid pro quo relationship between the other doctor and the sales rep. There was lots of evidence stuff there! Waiver of attorney-client privilege and Confrontation Clause were raised by the TV writers, but I got hung up on hearsay. Where's the hearsay exception there? Statement against interest? Statement by a co-conspirator? Who knows!

Finally, there was the Criminal Intent episode where a lawyer supposedly wrote a will for a client that was very beneficial to the lawyer. Wait a second! They can't do that! Professional Responsibility and undue influence and all that. But then it was revealed that all he did was suggest a trust where he was a trustee that got 10% annual paycheck for services as a trustee. The character implied that was "perfectly legal." I'm still nulling it over.

So you see, there is plenty of bar exam review that can occur while watching TV. Thank God for Law and Order marathons!

Monday, July 14, 2008

Small World

I met a nice lady at the pool today while I was swimming. I originally took the lane second from the wall and she took the one third from the wall. I had to move towards her a bit because apparently there were two people on the other side of the pool who were going to use the lanes next to the wall. No biggie, I could share. But then a THIRD person decided to join them (a friend, I think) so I had to be even more careful not to run head into them. So I asked the lady next to me if I was crowding her too much. Then she started talking about the swimsuits the Olympic athletes wear and we started talking Olympics and such and such. Eventually she said were she works and I asked her if she knew a close family friend who works there and she did! Maybe we all really are separated by only six degrees...

(This is a pretty good gist of how I look when I swim—the women that is.)

Sunday, July 13, 2008

Brilliant

Sometimes I make poor choices. Something tells me starting the Harry Potter series (seven books!) two weeks before my bar exam was one of those poor choices.

Oops.

Thursday, July 10, 2008

Phew

Well, we took our simulated MBE today and this made me feel a lot better. My raw score wasn't too bad, and I finished about thirty minutes early on both sections. That's a relief considering MY ESSAY KNOWLEDGE IS TERRIBLE. For the first time in my legal life I'm doing better at multiple choice than essays!

Thursday, July 3, 2008

Photo Montage: The Stressful Life of a Spoiled Labradoodle








When things get this bad, there's only one place to turn...