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  • Friday, April 28, 2006


    Folks just need to get over themselves.

    I think it's cool that the Star Spangled Banner has been recorded and is being sung in Spanish. It's not like Spanish hasn't been a part of this country since before it became "the United States". And we seem to be one of the only countries on the face of the earth that thinks that being bilingual is a very. bad. thing.


    Besides, isn't it sentiment and the desire to express that sentiment that's important?

    Blogs: Good or Evil?

    That's the title of Howard Kurtz's column today. Of course, he knew it would get blog attention. Nothing like flashy headlines to draw 'em in. And feeding the beast, he opens with:
    I write again today about blogging because I believe it has become the most vibrant, innovative and controversial form of information delivery in the media world today.

    Also, I was stuck for a column.
    So following his lead (being generally stuck for something new to say)... I'll leave it there. Here is what he had to say.

    (Lame of me, I know, but I've been grumpy of late and am venting my frustrations through other outlets. I hope to return to my regularly scheduled self soon.)

    Thursday, April 27, 2006

    From last week, but...

    Rolling Stone Magazine has profiled Dubya as The Worst President in History?
    Read for yourself. It's a fairly lengthy article analyzing his presidency in comparison to historical screw-ups as well as those who become footnotes in history.

    Interesting stuff, but I made up my mind on this a long time ago.

    Wednesday, April 26, 2006


    B+3. How the frick did that happen?

    Ugly Americans

    No, let me correct that... this is ugly and unAmerican -- and frankly, I think, dangerous.

    The folks who develop these games fail to realize that they are the minority (the narrow-minded minority), but because of the internet, the bile they spew can touch many -- like tech-savy kids who might happen upon these sites. What are they potentially teaching our children? What message are these websites sending to the world? What societal values are they promoting?

    I don't like the answers to any of those questions, and I don't want there to be any confusion that people who develop the sites are patriots. They aren't. They are ugly unAmericans.

    A new kewl tool

    Check this out. It's a free, anonymous site that allows you to plug in any address to get an estimate of the market value of the property.

    I entered my address, and I think the value it gave me is actually lower than market value (because DC is hyper-inflated right now) -- but certainly higher than my tax basis.

    Another tool to learn more about your neighbor. Interesting stuff for the would-be infovoyeur.

    Friday, April 21, 2006

    Happy Birthday Dad!

    He's celebrating his birthday by going golfing -- which is a great thing because it means he's mobile and energetic, something he hasn't been in the past several years due to a whole series of back, hip, heart, etc. surgeries he's had. Yay.

    Happy Birthday Pop!

    Thursday, April 20, 2006

    Off to the wilds of New Jersey tomorrow

    Yup, this is the weekend of my roommate-from-college's wedding. I am not looking forward to the drive.

    It's weird, but the DC-NY drive used to be nothing to me. When I lived in NYC, I'd do it after work on Friday -- no problem. Just come to DC for the weekend. And when I went to Rutgers (which is, granted, closer to DC than where I am going tomorrow), it was cake. In fact, I used to race myself and try and best my flight time each time I made the trip. I'd measure my time from exit to exit -- because we all know that those suburban streets slow you down -- and my best college driving time was 2 hours and 39 minutes from exit 9 on the turnpike to where my folks live. It's a straight shot up/down Interstate 95... going 75 MPH the entire way. Never mind that it's something more than 200 miles... I had my route down pat. Cake. Timing my personal best helped tick off the miles so the driving seemed less tedious. I also remember that I once told my father about my 2hr 39m commute -- and his reaction was: "You know your car is only 4 cylinders, don't you?" Yes, but it was a fiesty little car!

    But I digress...

    Anyway, no low-flying and artful dodging for me tomorrow. Not this time. I'm taking the road less travelled -- because I just don't want to deal with all the tolls and commuter traffic around DC, Baltimore, Philly and the entire NJ Turnpike. I must be getting old; I have no patience for the traffic -- and I'm blogging about it! (yawn) Instead, I'll be cutting through PA rather than going up NJ. It's about 30 miles longer, but I expect it to be faster because I'll be avoiding the big cities. I'm even taking off work early to avoid the congestion. And get this (a true sign of my ancientness), I scoured the internet for free, downloadable audiobooks to compensate for the dead tune zones I'm likely to encounter along the way. Once I started looking, I was surprised to find that there are a lot of free books out there, and I found some stuff that I thought might be interesting.

    Of course, to be free, the books had to be in the public domain, and in order to be in the public domain, well, they pretty much had to be at least a hundred or so years old. So I'll be catching up on the classics... and if that doesn't work out so well, I'll have my iPod loaded with my drivin' tunes... Which I'll probably need because I haven't done a road trip since before law school. And while I generally consider myself a very strong driver, I'm a bit outta practice for the upcoming 5 hour journey, especially since it's supposed to rain. Bleck.

    But I'm definitely looking forward to seeing both former college roommies. I'll be staying with one and going to the wedding of the other. The who is getting married -- I haven't seen her in years. And while I just saw the other one in December, I haven't seen her hubby (who is also of college vintage) and her two kids for years.

    It's gonna be a good visit. I'm looking forward to seeing them and exclaiming how none of us has aged a bit since we graduated...

    Check it out Scooter...

    My latest addition...

    This looks really interesting

    Bloggership: How Blogs are Transforming Legal Scholarship

    I am especially interested in the 2:00 - 3:30 p.m. panel: Law Blogs and the First Amendment
    Glenn Reynolds (Tennessee; InstaPundit) (via video conference): Libel, the First Amendment and Bloggers
    Eugene Volokh (UCLA; The Volokh Conspiracy): Cheap Speech and What It Has Done
    Eric Goldman (Marquette; Technology & Marketing Law Blog): Joint and Guest Blogger Arrangements

    Betsy Malloy (Cincinnati; Health Law Prof Blog)
    Dan Solove (George Washington; Concurring Opinions)
    Given the subject matter of the symposium, I would expect that the various panels will be uploaded online...? Along with the papers presented? I hope so.

    Wednesday, April 19, 2006

    Battle of the B: week 2

    So I exercised a bit more this week but I also ate more. And cheated, but not too bad. But still, for some reason, I wasn't looking forward to facing the scale this morning. My body didn't feel different. I didn't feel progress, but I was hopeful that maybe I'd shed one pound this past week.


    In fact, I gained weight -- two pounds, which is places me above my original B level. I'm B+1. Grrrr.

    I can make guesses as to why, but there's no point. No excuses. Just gotta do more exercise this week.

    Maybe this will motivate me?

    Monday, April 17, 2006

    How is it possible that I didn't learn about this until just now?

    "The District will observe Emancipation Day Monday April 17th to mark Abraham Lincoln's signing of the Compensated Emancipation Act on April 16, 1862. The act freed about 3,100 slaves in the District."
    Of course, I knew about emancipation, but I didn't know that the DC government celebrated it with a holiday and a parade.

    Tsk, tsk, tsk on me.


    Errant Elders Find Amenities in Japan's Jails: Demographics, Depression Spur a Surge of Crime by Seniors

    Sunday, April 16, 2006

    Finally, a weekend I used rather than snoozed

    Finally, a weekend of fun productivity rather than banal bleah stuff or sleeping, sleeping, sleeping because I was exhausted.

    The weather was fabulous. On Saturday, a friend and I walked around Georgetown, shopped a bit and ate a yummy seafood lunch down on the Washington Harbor. We also people-watched along the "boardwalk" (in quotes because it really isn't a true boardwalk, more like a dock quay) -- both terrestial and aquatic folk as well as their four-legged friends. It was such a glorious day that lots of people were out with their boats, and the Potomac was full of rental canoes, cayaks, motorboats and what can only be described as yachts. It was wonderful to just putter around and window-shop despite my constant sneezing & itching from the pollen and even though we got a serious preview of how hot the summer can get here -- and then come home and catch up on the TV that I missed during the week.

    Then today, I made it to my first dance class. It was fun and quite the workout. I was -- no kidding -- the elephant in the back of the room, stomping around among the graceful elks. Seriously. Absolute beginner. Absolutely obvious. Definitely humbling, but I'm definitely going back too. It was fun. It was hard work. It was good to move my body and sweat (even if the others weren't!).

    Afterwards, I meandered my way home, slowly. I enjoyed seeing the women in their brilliantly colored Easter hats and clothes and the Jewish families walking to services. The city (I was in the downtown district) somehow felt less business-like institutional and more colorful and friendly, full of families. Then I saw a movie tonight -- the first time in AGES -- and I have to admit that I cheated on my self-imposed regime by having popcorn. Ooops! But I don't regret it a second. I might on Wednesday, but not today.

    So I had a very nice weekend. Happy Easter! Happy Passover! Happy sunny Sunday!

    Saturday, April 15, 2006

    Overheard over sushi last night

    The woman at the table next to me was telling her dinner companion this story... It seems that another friend was graduating, and their school had lined up Jon Stewart as their gala speaker/entertainment. The student body was generally really excited because they thought their school just wasn't that cool.

    And it turns out that they were right; the school wasn't. And they also neglected to do their research.

    Instead of booking Jon Stewart of The Daily Show fame, it turns out that they had booked Jon A. Stewart, a former motivational speaker, businessman and part-time professional wrestler from Chicago. (Who?)

    Oops. No wonder the school got Stewart so cheap.

    Read about it here and here and here and here and here. (And frankly too many other sites to list.)

    And you can betcha' that you'll hear all about it on Monday here.

    Happy Tax Day...

    Maybe that's an oxymoron... But hey, at least uber-procrastinators like me have a few days' reprieve.

    BTW, ever notice that the Internal Revenue Service = "THE IRS"?


    Friday, April 14, 2006

    Reminder to self...

    So on my walk to work the other day still vexed by the seeming impossibility of finding a permanent full-time law job ("PFTLJ") in this city, a few things crossed my mind:

    1. I was asked for directions by a British couple. This reminded me that I live in a fabulous city. People from all over the world come to my city to see it. Not everyone can say that. We have restaurants with cuisines from every corner of the globe, and it's generally a great place to live (current administration, notwithstanding).
    2. I do have a job that covers my bills (but not much else, sadly) and is resume-worthy. I am learning stuff, too. So I will not be out on the street or doing the barista thing if PFTLJ doesn't show up immediately.
    3. I can walk to work -- not only am I able to walk, but work is within a close enough proximity that I can get there on leather power alone. Plus, I can take the bus or the metro when suffering from inclement weather or pinchy shoes.
    4. There is lots of green space here -- and pink space too! The cherry blossoms are still (slightly) out, and they bring a grin to my face every time I see them. During my commute of about a mile and change, I walk past 3 4 parks (or "squares") and one circle. That is just a good, good thing.

    So, in the end I reminded myself that the lousy job market here in my field of interest (employment law) probably has more to do with my inability to find the ever-elusive PFTLJ than my skills and resume. The EEOC thing is evidence of that. Budget cutbacks, de-emphasis of certain programs, etc. Energy Spatula just got a job she's really happy about -- which further reminds me that things will work out just fine. They always do. My job in the meantime is to keep plugging away at it, not take anything for granted (or be lazy about the job search) and focus on the positive.

    That sounds awfully new-agey, but after the stern talking to that I gave myself, I am actually kinda upbeat.

    Oh FTPLJ... yoo-hoo... where are you?

    Thursday, April 13, 2006

    The Power of Three meme

    The Power of Three: See Spot run.

    1. Three things you'd like to SEE in your lifetime, whether or not you think it's likely.
    1. A female president (of the United States, that is).
    2. Same sex marriages recognized AND respected in all 50 states.
    3. George Clooney knocking on my door, flowers in hand and asking for a date.

    2. Three SPOTs that you have visited that are "must see".
    1. The inside of the White House. Whether you like the resident or not, it's really awe-inspiring to visit a place where such historic and monumental decisions were/are made. Plus, it's really just cool to see all the furniture, art, etc. that's there.
    2. New York City. Just because. If you haven't been there, you'll know why the second you get there.
    3. Jerusalem. Talk about history. Talk about breath-taking. Oh my. The ancient part of the city is so steeped in history... and politics. It's truly a beautiful and wonderous place.

    3. Three people you'd like to see RUN for public office and why.
    1. Al Franken. Because he's smart and funny and informed, and his campaign would illustrate the sheer ridiculousness of politicking.
    2. Ben Stein. For the same reasons. Also to have a "Franken-Stein" debate.
    3. Tom DeLay. So I could see him lose.

    Now tag three people.
    Okay, Scooter, Denise and (let's see if she'll do it) Lizbeth.


    Okay, so when I am frustrated, sad, upset, stressed, or bored, I eat. That's the reason why I gained bar weight. That's the reason why I am on this diet. It's also the reason why I binged a bit last night after yesterday's fantabulous news from the EEOC.


    I know I was bad, but I figured that one binge wouldn't kill me after being good for so long. I don't know if it will or not, but it was a happy thing. I felt full and satisfied and slightly guilty. A good binge.

    What substance did I abuse? A green tea frappaccino and half a brownie from you-know-who.

    As binges go, I thought afterwards that it really was the perfect little binge -- it hit the spot well (didn't leave me wanting), and I didn't go too crazy or overboard. It was a controlled binge. And all in all, not too bad -- or so I thought until I looked up the nutrition facts online today.

    Holy mother of gxd. What did I do?

    Blackberry Green Tea Frappuccino® Blended Crème Tazo Green Tea Frappuccino®, premium Japanese green tea and blackberry syrup, topped with whipped cream and blackberry topping.

    Serving Size 16 fl. oz.
    Calories 560
    Fat Calories 130
    Total Fat (g) 15
    Saturated Fat (g) 9
    Cholesterol (mg) 60
    Sodium (mg) 330
    Total Carbohydrates (g) 91
    Fiber (g) 1
    Sugars (g) 78
    Protein (g) 13
    Vitamin A 8%
    Vitamin C 15%
    Calcium 40%
    Iron 4%

    Espresso Brownie
    Calories 370
    Calories from Fat 190
    Total Fat (g) 21
    Saturated Fat (g) 13
    Trans Fat (g) 0
    Cholesterol (mg) 85
    Sodium (mg) 115
    Total Carbohydrates (mg) 43
    Dietary Fiber (g) 2
    Sugars (g) 30
    Protein (g) 4
    Vitamin A 6%
    Vitamin C 0%
    Calcium 4%
    Iron 10%

    And the brownie was tiny! I had two bites! So, even divided by two, those numbers are truly scary. And more than cool and refreshing and yummy, those frappaccinos will pack on the pounds. I mean, one drink is the caloric equivalent of a small meal. Yikes. I had a meal through one drink and two bites of a brownie...

    Well, now I have even more incentive to work-out this weekend. And those numbers are scary enough to keep me from doing that again -- so they won't affect my B number.


    Wednesday, April 12, 2006

    For crying out loud...!

    Someone offer me a $@#%^@#$^*% job already!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

    I am so tired of this. I am so frustrated that I could scream, cry, shout and/or break something. Or all of the above, repeatedly. With vigor. And zest. And relish. And any other appropriate condiment or ingredient. Truly.

    I just got this wonderful news a few minutes ago. The EEOC has cancelled two of the FIVE positions (= 40% of the advertised slots) in their attorney honor program -- the two in their DC headquarters. The two I applied for.

    Sheesh. JFC. What does it take to get a job?!?!?!?!? It's not like I have a salary requirement or anything! It's not like I have any pride anymore or anything! I have a brain. I will work. HARD. Someone give me a chance at doing something I want to do! (mutters more under her breath)


    This is really demoralizing. Sorry for the rant, but I really wanted a shot at this program. I still have a few more lines out there, but the pickings are getting slimmer and slimmer and slimmer. And soon, I'll no longer be able to apply for the "fresh out of law school but no real legal experience" jobs. I'll be in no-man's land -- too long out of school to be eligible for the newbie grad jobs but not enough experience to qualify for anything else.

    This totally, totally bites the big one.
    Dear Applicant,

    Thank you for applying to the EEOC's 2006 Attorney Honor Program. I am writing to inform you that the Commission is no longer offering the positions with the Office of Federal Operations and the Office of Legal Counsel, located in its Headquarters in Washington, D.C. The Commission had decided to focus its efforts on field litigation and enforcement. Accordingly, the positions you indicated as your first preference will be canceled. You are receiving this e-mail as you chose one of those offices as your first preference.

    It is the decision of the Commission to re-distrbute [sic] those applications whose first preference was one of the Washington D.C. positions to our field offices for consideration for their Honor Program Attorney positions. If you indicated a second preference for one of the Trial Attorney positions in either Atlanta, Miami, Los Angeles or New York, your application will be forwarded to that office for consideration. If you indicated a second preference for the Administrative Judge position in New York, your application will be considered for that position. If you did not indicate a second preference or your second preference was for a Washington D.C. position as well, then your application will be forwarded to the Office of Field Programs for consideration for the Administrative Judge position in New York. This is being done as their [sic] were substantially fewer applicants for the Administrative Judge position than the Trial Attorney position, and therefore will even out the applicant pools.

    The Commission apologizes for this change and any inconvenience it may cause. We will not be withdrawing applications for consideration. We will be unable to accept requests for a change in preference. If you are ranked highly enough at the new office to which your application was forwarded and are selected for an interview, you may decline the interview if you do not want to be considered for that position.

    Thank you for your understanding of these changes.
    Back to square one. AGAIN.

    There's no place like home...!

    Make sure you tell the school trip organizers -- the American History Museum to Close for Nearly Two Years. Ack! Dorothy's ruby red slippers will be going in the closet until 2008.

    But, but, but that's funnest place to go -- and had the bestest gift shop too! Rats. Now we'll have to look as science stuff and other educational crap instead...

    My vote for the best headline today

    It definitely caught my attention: Star wears red shirt, no pants to Walk of Fame ceremony.

    And got a smile.

    Battle of the B: week 1

    Week one after the official weigh-in. I have to say that this past week, I've been pretty good about my eating in my neverending battle of the B. I didn't, however, notice much change in the way my clothes fit nor did I exercise much. (And I'm sure the latter had everything to do with the former.)

    In fact, I exercised less -- opting for the bus instead of walking to work -- and slept more. Clearly, my metabolism is close to death. Clearly, I need to exercise to be successful to shed the bar weight.

    I do think that I've done a good job tackling my bad eating habits (not that this won't be an on-going, daily endeavor) -- they are at least, under control. But I have been giving only lip service to the other half of this deal. So yeah, I gotta get my butt in gear. I gotta exercise. But I can't stand exercising for the sake of exercising. It's gotta be fun.

    So what could be more fun than this? Hurray for Bollywood! This is what I'm gonna start doing, this Sunday. Yes, I know it's Easter (yes, I am a heathen) -- maybe that will mean there are fewer students there to witness my first less than graceful attempts at this. But I am actually looking forward to it. And that is saying a lot.

    And, for the record... my "B watch" is B-1. I was hoping for -2, so it's a bit of a disappointment. But this week should be better since I'm finally getting off my butt and shaking it a bit.

    Tuesday, April 11, 2006

    Pro-Life Nation

    Read the New York Times Magazine article. It's about life for women in El Salvador where abortion is completely illegal. It's important.

    Here is Bitch Ph.D's take on it; After School Snack's post, and a brief comment by Scooter.

    There's nothing I can add that hasn't already been said. Really, brace yourself and then read it.

    I'm not from UMich, but I say "GO BLUE!"

    Make that "Go Blue!" x 2 -- check this out. Even a law grad can figure out those numbers.


    Kaine is able...

    Sorta. The WaPo reports that Kaine Urges Voters to Reject Amendment that would constitutionally prohibit same sex marriages in VA.

    Right position, but his reasons are, well, less inclusive than what I'd like to see:
    Kaine said in a statement that he was concerned about "the broad wording of the proposed constitutional amendment," saying that it threatens "the constitutional rights of individuals to enter into private contracts, and also . . . the discretion of employers to extend certain benefits, such as health care coverage, to unmarried couples."
    So he opposes the amendment because of how it will affect everyone but gay couples? And believes that marriage = man + woman. Not the Feingold position I applaud, but then again, this is Virginia. Kaine is certainly entitled to his reasons why he opposes the amendment, just so long as this ugly discrimination stays out of the state constitution and statutes.

    But then again, this is Virginia, as in Loving v.

    Monday, April 10, 2006

    Urban population explosion

    In my apartment, to be exact.

    So I mentioned that I collect masks from all over the world. Most were bought in country by family, friends, me. One or two [cough, cough] I admit to having purchased online. But to be honest, the really, really cool ones were hand-carried across vast expanses back to my wall. North America, South America, Central America, Asia, Europe (yes, Europe), Africa, the South Pacific. None yet from Australia, but I have high hopes since my mother is there now!!!

    For instance, this colorful little one was brought by my friend from Sri Lanka. In fact, she left the remote village where this was made the day before the tsunami hit Christmas of 2004. She told me that she believes that the village, the shop, etc. were all destroyed. Truly devastating. We, however, were all grateful that she left the day before the big wave hit -- because she originally had planned on being there longer. And my friend also told me that visiting this little village to collect my mask (she ALWAYS brings a mask back from her journeys for me) was the highlight of her visit in Sri Lanka. How cool is that?

    And I also have one from New Orleans that I venture to say is a survivor where the shop may not have been. I have a number that were actually used in theater (Japan, Indonesia), as opposed to having been made for tourists. Some are cultural artifacts (legal, don't worry) such as the Cherokee Boogie man mask and the Pacific Northwest first nations' masks. Some are cheapie tourist items. Most are a bit of both. Many are one of a kind. They are made of ceramics (clay, bisque, plaster), wood, leather, metal, cloth, coconut shell, paper mache, and resin and are adorned with all sorts of natural and created decorations. Believe it or not, this is only a portion of my collection. I don't remember the exact count, but I have something like 50 masks representing some 30-odd countries. The true antiques are on another wall in my apartment.

    I don't know how much my friends/family paid for the ones they've brought me. However, I have paid between <$1 and several hundred $$ to acquire a mask, but they are priceless to me.

    And like I said, someone is gonna get rich someday selling these on eBay! But not anytime soon.

    Hot color for the spring

    Lime green sandals. Just watch, you'll see.

    Let's just hope the women who wear them have the good sense to wear them with black or white, not more lime green.

    Saturday, April 08, 2006

    My li'l sis and me

    I gave this pair of photos to my father one year for Christmas. It is my li'l sis and me. As adults now, we don't look all that much alike. When we were little and especially side by side like this, I think there is some resemblance. Of course, these photos were taken some 15 or so years apart.

    I bet everyone can guess which one is me (hint: check out the distinctly 70s palette!).

    My Goddess

    Today I finished my training to become a literacy tutor for adults and was matched with a student.

    Her name is "Goddess". I can't wait to meet her.

    Bigotry in Asia

    As a bi-racial woman, I am both a woman of color and a woman of pallor. But I tend to identify more as a woman of color. Others tend to see me more as a woman of pallor -- basic white with maybe a bit of a twist. In Japan, I was definitely not seen as Japanese, but I didn't fit their stereotype of what an American woman should look like either. I think Pamela Anderson probably exemplified that stereotype. They didn't know she's Canadian. Blonde, blue eyes, big boobs... ya' know. A media stereotype.

    Asians buy into media stereotypes a great deal. Blacks are bad -- after all, they're almost always drug dealers or pimps or criminals on TV. When people heard that I was from DC (this was back when it was widely known as the "murder capital" of the country), I got all sorts of questions about guns. Did I have one? Did I carry one? Bleh.

    Tiger Woods has done a lot to break down conventional assumptions about race and ethnicity for Americans. And apparently so has Super Bowl MVP Hines Ward in Korea.

    I didn't know this until just now, but Ward is half Korean, born in Korea. And his success has provided a role model for mixed race kids in Korea who are largely marginalized by this mostly homogenous country, according to this WaPo article, Steelers MVP Gives S. Korea a Most Valuable Perspective, which briefly discusses his journey to self-identity and appreciation of his Korean mother -- and then his journey to Korea with his mother. Mostly, however, it focuses on how his success has impacted Korean society, giving the country pause to examine their societal biases against mixed race kids.
    In a country that is 99.5 percent ethnic Korean, Ward's visit has sparked a broad reexamination of social prejudices against mixed-race Koreans, particularly those who, like Ward and Chang, are the children of Korean women and U.S. servicemen stationed here."
    From my own experience, I know that Asians can be terribly bigoted. Not out of malice, but more out of ignorance (and a bit of a sense of superiority). Hines Ward is opening a few minds and pushing Koreans to re-examine what it means to be Korean. In my book, that's more valuable than the number of touchdown passes he might catch. Pretty cool.

    UPDATE (4/11/06): Check out CNN's video coverage on it here.

    Friday, April 07, 2006

    Thumbs down

    But also up. One down, one up?

    So, my friend won the vote for section speaker at graduation. And I have to admit I'm half thrilled that I don't have to do it (and that she was chosen) and half disappointed because I'm competitive enough to care.

    But, truly, I'm more than content that she won the vote. This may sound like a rationalization, but it isn't. As I told a friend: I ran for SBA year one because I didn't want someone who didn't really represent the interests of our section to be our delegate. Kind of a "default" reason to run. Same thing here. I think she's a perfect representative of our section, and I am really glad she got selected as graduation speaker. Under other circumstances I would have voted for her (I didn't this time because I had to get at least one vote).

    Thus ends my public speaking career for at least a little while. Last night was only 300 or so. Graduation -- whew. Hoardes and masses and hoardes... and relatives of those hoardes.

    I think my 7 minutes in the spotlight last night was enough for now.

    Thumbs up

    So, my much procrastinated speech went really well last night, or so I am told. Once I got going, I hit auto-pilot and frankly, didn't remember much about it afterwards other than the words I stumbled on. Oops. However, a number of people -- including strangers who just walked up to me later -- gave me very, very positive feedback and gracious compliments. So I guess the heart of my message was conveyed.

    So I'm pleased with it, for two reasons. First, it was a speech about the contributions of women, and the women the in audience -- my target audience -- seemed to be touched. My aim was to do justice to their contributions and sacrifices, and if they felt my appreciation, then all the work was worthwhile, and I feel like it was a success.

    Second, I got some very kind compliments from General Eric Shinseki. He complimented the content, cadence and emotion and told me that everyone was actually paying attention and listening to me rather than schmoozing. I was incredibly flattered by his praise -- especially because I have a huge crush on him (but only in the most innocent way). I just admire him incredibly. For what he has accomplished. For his grace and dignity. He is a soft-spoken man, a true gentleman. The way he handled himself in face of the Bush administration's mistreatment, well, what can I say? A four-star gentleman. And his wife is truly lovely -- in every sense of the word -- too.

    So, PHEW... I pulled it off! Done. Now I just gotta do my taxes.

    Wednesday, April 05, 2006

    Procrastinator, PhD

    So, tomorrow evening, I have to do a 6 minute presentation at a black tie gala dinner before an audience of several hundred, including members of Congress, senators, generals.... my FAMILY. I spent endless hours last week working on the accompanying slide presentation, but I am just now settling down to write the text of what I'll actually say.

    In fact, I haven't started yet, although I've put some thought into it.

    Somehow, I can never manage to find my focus until literally the 11th hour (okay, so it's only 10 o'clock here -- I'm an hour ahead of schedule).

    Yes, I am indeed a master procrastinator. Yes, this is indeed how I went through law school. Yes, indeed, I am an idiot for doing it this way.

    Setting himself apart... again

    Another reason to like Sen. Russell Feingold (D-WI): Feingold Backs Legalizing Same-Sex Marriages

    No, he didn't just take the position that anti-same-sex marriages are discriminatory and mean-spirited, he espoused legalizing same-sex marriages. Now that's the kinda Dem I like!

    Go Russ! And where do I send my campaign donation?

    Facing reality

    This is the second semaine-iversary of my starting that dasterdly diet. I continue to see a teeny, tiny bit of progress in terms of clothes being a bit looser, but I decided I needed more incentive.

    And I decided that incentive would take the form of public disclosure. Here.

    So I weighed myself this morning. And I am going to report the relative number every week on this blog. Today is B (= baseline). Hopefully, next week will be something in the neighborhood of B-2, but with my lack of exercise, holding my breath won't help.

    This morning's number was exactly the number I expected it to be. Which isn't to say that I'm happy about it; just that I wasn't shocked, nor pleasantly surprised. It's high -- certainly higher than I'm comfortable with -- but that's the reason I've got to change my habits and have some accountability.

    So there you have it. Now there's no faking it. I've got numbers. Tune in next week for the update on this battle against B.

    Tuesday, April 04, 2006

    My dirty little secret

    I watch America's Next Top Model.

    There. I said it. Out loud (sorta). This is not something I usually broadcast. But, it's the only reality television show that I watch. Really. No, really. The only one.

    I got into it when they sent the models to Japan (last season?). It was hysterical, and of course, I could totally relate to the experience that is Japan. Well, I've watched a coupla' shows this season, and I just have to comment on Gina.

    Gina, Gina, Gina. She's the only Asian American contestant on the show (she's Korean American). Correction, she was the only Asian American contestant on the show. She got booted this past week, and all I can say is "Thank Gawd."

    Usually, I root for my peeps because I think it's important that APAs (Asian Pacific Americans) develop a higher profile in front of the camera, in politics, in leadership positions, as role models. I really wanted Gina to do well. She's really cute and tall and seemingly good model material...

    But then I actually saw how she carried herself. It made me cringe for her -- how she is completely inarticulate, has no self-esteem, is clingly, lets others walk all over her and basically acts like an airhead. Not a model and certainly not a role model. And definitely not the image of an Asian American woman that I want to see all over UPN. So I was actually yelling at the TV for the judges to send her on her way. Because she didn't deserve to stay. Because I don't believe in supporting someone just because of their ethnic background or some other affinity when they don't got the goods. Because I, anonymously at home, was embarrassed by her behavior. There are already too many stereotypes about APA women. We don't need any reinforced, thankyouverymuch.

    So there. That's my dirty little secret -- that I watch the show, that I rooted against my peeps.

    Now, if only Jade would get the kick in the ass that she deserves. B-I-T-C-H.

    In that exclusive 8% club of GULC grads!

    Yeah, the 7.9% who don't have jobs at graduation. I'd prefer not to pull a two-fer by joining the 7% club of those who fail the bar on their first try.

    Wahoo. Go me!

    No, it starts with a "BL"... B-L-O-O-K-E-R

    The Blooker. The "book" award for bloggers... and this year's winner just happens to be about a cooker, beating out a hooker and a looker.

    Julie Powell's tales of French cooking beat the intimate diary of a prostitute and a guide to the UK's best "greasy spoon" cafes to take the Blooker Prize.

    But couldn't they have come up with a better name for the award?

    Is that sound I hear Hell freezing over?

    Rep. Tom DeLay will drop out of his re-election race -- wow.

    That tells me either that DeLay did the stuff that he's been accused of and is about to get caught -- or else that his negatives are so high that he can see the writing on the wall, that his new district won't re-elect him. Either way, he screwed himself.

    And I am amused by the fact that DeLay's own redistricting plan political gerrymandering will be part of his undoing. His new district has very little of his former district in it and is much less R than the former one. These folks neither know him nor have real loyalties to him... and so it seems likely that DeLay is dropping out to avoid the embarrassment of losing the election to someone he ousted as a result of his redistricting.

    Oh, wouldn't that be just sweet? Sugar sweet. Sugarland sweet.

    The hammer gets nailed!

    UPDATE: Not just not seeking re-election, but actually resigning from Congress. Wow. Wow. He must be in deep, deep trouble.

    Monday, April 03, 2006


    For the past month and a bit, I've successfully put the horrors of the bar out of my head. I figured, there's nothing I can do about it now, so why dwell on it? Right? Right. It's worked. I haven't given that silly exam much thought in the interim. I long ago resigned myself to the fact that I may have to take it again in July.

    Particularly because of the essays. There was one essay which really stumped me. And that especially bugged me because I usually can write something. In fact, I'm very good at writing essays. Well, I did write something, but I was sure it wasn't what they wanted.

    And I was right. I didn't know what I was talking about. Today, on the bus ride across town, it came to me.

    It was the missing torts question. One of the things which left me uneasy me about the essay section was that I couldn't find the torts question. I thought it was really odd that there wasn't one. Well, there was; I just didn't recognize it.

    And here's the rub: it wasn't a tort that was taught either in class or through the Bar/Bri lectures. It was a fraud tort, which I sorta guessed at but didn't know well enough to walk through the elements. Oh well.

    Lesson: review the Bar/Bri handouts completely. I did, but not enough so that it stuck in my head to recognize immediately and jump off the page.

    But ya' know what? It feels so much better to know what the heck that question was rather than just being confused by it, even if I pretty much blew it. And, from what I understand, the MD bar does this every year -- deeply disguises a question. For February it was torts in a contracts-skin. In July it was the other way around, contracts masquerading as torts.

    And that's why I think I may not pass the bar. But then again, it's only one question. And I don't have to think about it for another month.

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