Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Where did that come from?

Yesterday I was looking out the kitchen window at the park across the road, a care taker was removing tree limbs from the creek. He looked happy. I thought I could be happy doing that kind of work. fleeting thougths of throwing it all in and calling it a really long bad joke ran through my head.

Today while sitting in the libary it felt like it was all over, like I had failed and it was time to leave. I got really depressed (for about 5 minutes).

Not ready for this to be over.

Guess first year wasn't the only time is all feels too much - Obiter

Thursday, March 17, 2011

Running up hill

It’s week three and things look OK. This is a mirage, I know it, but I am still drinking that sand.

Lucifers Corner Office.


On my way out yesterday I was informed that currently there is not space in the office (two new solicitors starting) and I am not needed…until my uni holidays. That’s great news! I was freaking out about how I was going to maintain the insanity of working 45 hours a week on top of all my study. Now I don’t have to worry about it and I have a summer (winter really) clerkship lined up. On top of all that, the solicitor who has come from the Glass Tower was really sad to see me go, said all these really great things about my work and that is was a shame I am leaving for a while.
I have had such an interesting 4 months there. Learning so much, and actually doing legal work. I am already excited about going back!!


Subjects

Property Law A

I freaking love this class! Maybe it is because I used to be real estate agent (I was 18…why did people allow me to sell their homes!?) and a Mortgage Broker (21…I was good with people…not so much with the whole number thing) but am enjoying it all the same.

Equity

Also really lapping it up. I think I am getting more from my law subjects then I did last year for a few reasons. Firstly, the learning curve is not 90 degrees, I know how to find/read/note a case. Secondly, I have soo much more time with only 2 law subjects. So much more time.

Policing in context

My old man is a cop, I find this subject interesting if nothing else. I have no real interest in a career in the service but a policing major is a much better choice than a criminology major (for me anyway, I hated the psychology subjects).

Introduction into criminal research

I can see the utility of this subject. In fact it might be a great subject however the text book is a nightmare. I usually would not slam any book or text in this blog but this book makes me physically sick when I think about having to read it (for goodness sake, I read a contracts text book – cover to cover last year) “Research Methods for Criminal justice and Criminology” so poorly written. There is some really great content and examples however it is too hard to read, it is as if the author got all excited with all this stuff and just crammed it into a book without thinking about how to structure it. This one subject is going to ensure a very, very long semester (the unit co-ordinator and lecturers are fine, it’s just that freaking text).

No more 6am starts for this egg, I can drink on weekdays again!! Yay! – Obiter

Monday, March 7, 2011

Tell me about it

I want to read all about your law school experience. I really do. Blogging about your law school trials and tribulations has many benefits, so why not start one?

Maybe I am just a little late to the party (see bottles everywhere and nobody in sight), but I seem to be the only Australian law student keeping a blog. Why is this? I don’t have an answer for you but I will ask you to join me. Here is why.

It is Cathartic
We all experience stress, anxiety and the crushing pressure of studying the law while also doing all the other things we need to do (it sucks how sleeping takes up so many hours each week right!?). Sometimes just taking the time to sit down and express those worries is enough to bring back some perspective and create a bit of clarity.

Comradery, Amigo
When you share your experience and read those of others some of the isolation felt during the peak of the stress is lessened. Yes you could lean over the partition, talk to the person next to you and break the golden law library rule but then you would obviously not be reading those cases (naughty you).

Different writing styles

Writing in a different ‘voice’ is great training for the real world, as legal eagles in training we are also apprentice word smiths. Writing in as many different styles to develop your ability to work with the written word is like exercising different muscle groups, yes it would be nice to have great abs but it would be far better if the rest of the body was in shape. Your blogging/creative writing helps shape and mould your more formal work, practice, practice, practice. In any event, imagine how liberating writing a whole paragraph without referencing a single case is! Looking back at my own posts, the growth in my proofing, grammar and spelling is blaringly obvious (I think editing a post after posting is cheating – my writing is there for all to see, good, bad and blotto)

Creativity
The cases we read are full of imagination and flights of unbridled fancy… Clearly I am taking some artistic licence when describing the tedium that can be both legal reading and writing. Break it up a little, after hours salving away at that criminal law memo flowed by briefing notes on why Mabo changed the legal landscape in Australia, be crazy and produce a little bit of airy fairy fluff. Just writing outside of the topic might alleviate some writers block and allow fresh eyes, maybe even a different angle you did not see before.

A record (productive procrastination)
If that Equity text book looks a little too dense and cracking in open for the first time can be avoided for just a moment longer is that not reason enough? If you’re just starting law school this is the best time to write about it, because the learning curve is about 90 degrees and when exams are over you can see how far you have come.
Do you put your name to it?
In my case no. I like the anonymity of my pseudonym; there are both pros and cons to both sides. In any event always be careful about what you put out there. I follow a few golden rules

1. Never name anybody
2. Be general when talking about a person (yes the 5’3 Caucasian guy with brown eyes, tongue ring and Mohawk, I know you read my blog… and I am watching you, watching me).
3. Play nice with others.

When you start your blog, let me know and we can get a roundup happening.


See you in the blogosphere – Obiter Ovum
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