Friday, April 30, 2010

So I've been running all day on 4 1/2 hours of sleep, it's 4 in the afternoon and I haven't eaten since 6 this morning. I've got the nasty case behind me, now I'm in search of a snack and a bed. I'll be round to visit you all on Sunday.

Monday, April 26, 2010

Busy, busy, busy

I had a big case last week and a big case this week, so no posting or visiting really going on this week. Don't worry though,

Saturday is May Day and I can assure you the May Day Fairies will be hard at work planting lollipops in the yards of children and I will have a post on it on Sunday, May 2nd, the Spring gods be willing!

Thursday, April 22, 2010

Bless his hard of hearing parents...

Thanks to Marilyn for sending me this video. It made my day. Watch toward the end as the kid recognizes someone. I don't know whether they were dancing off screen or cheering him on, but he really got into it.

Monday, April 19, 2010

Environmental Law Class

I don't usually talk about my law school experiences because it's akin to discussing boot camp. You really just want to forget the trauma of it. Well, I just found out one of my favorite law professors has part of one of his environmental law classes on-line, and when I watched the video clip, I wasn't traumatized and realized, there were some parts of law school that I actually enjoyed - Firestone's Contracts class, his Environmental Law class, and Reed Loder's Estates class. As for Firestone - I LOVED this guy. He was short, sweet, too the point, get in, get out, learn the essentials, done. His classes were fast paced, you can tell by how quickly he speaks, but he never rattled on about things that didn't matter. He would strip cases down to their elements and it was so much easier learning this way for me.

Just listen to the first minute when he starts talking about the negligence case and the difference between "cause in fact" and "proximate cause." He says, "your tort teachers would kill me because they spend weeks on this, right, but we're gonna do it in one word. What's proximate cause?" Foreseeability. "End of story." This is Professor Firestone in a nutshell. He teaches the essentials and drills them home. It's like teaching proper grammar before you can write a great novel. You need to know the essentials before you can make sense of the complexities. That was SOOOOO helpful in law school.

Here's a sample of one other thing we all went through in law school, appellate advocacy. Apellate Advocacy was when we were assigned appellate cases to research, write arguments on, then argue them in a mock court setting. I was such a nervous wreck going into the oral arguments and kept practicing with other students. Then when that component of class was over, I and some other classmates entered the moot court competitions. That we had fun with, because even though it was supposed to be competitive for a student position on a board, there was no grade being assigned and we just had fun with it and argued our hearts out. We argued over two consecutive nights before panels of 3 judges each time. Our team did well, and afterward one of the judges came up to me and told me I should be a litigator. No Thanks! Too much stress, but it was a great experience and something I needed to do before getting out in the "real world" and actually arguing for clients in court. Okay, enough reminiscing, back to work.

Friday, April 16, 2010

Sue Sylvester's Vogue

Okay, so M and I just watched the season premiere of Glee (we taped it). At the end of the show, the arch-villain - Sue Sylvester, played by Jane Lynch, did this take off on Madonna's Vogue. It's really funny if you are familiar with the personality of the character. Also, they changed just a few of the lyrics to include Glee references. Apparently next Tuesday's episode is going to have a tribute to Madonna.

If the video won't play for you, go here: Vogue

Thursday, April 15, 2010

'Tis the Season.....again

...for remodeling!! *groan*

M wants a new kitchen. I'm not crazy about our kitchen, but I can live with it for a while longer. Obviously, we don't have $30,000++ to gut the kitchen and do it right. Who does? Right? So we are looking at a budget of maybe $4,000. We've been talking about doing the remodeling sometime this summer. I know M has been itching to get rid of our ugly, uncleanable linoleum floors for some time, and she had mentioned maybe getting started on the floor as early as Spring Break. So it was no surprise when M and friends began ripping up the floor last weekend. We have hardwood floors throughout our old house and were really hoping to salvage the wood floors we were certain were under the linoleum.

Unfortunately, between the hundreds of screw holes in the floor, the glue stuck all over it, and the multiple holes that were cut out at some time in the past for pipes and duct work to the basement, and then patched with plywood and cement, there isn't really anything to save. We're planning to get an estimate on how much it would cost to have new hardwood floors installed to match the old ones. If it's too much, we'll be tiling the floor ourselves. So the pictures you see here are not the photos of the destruction, those will be coming soon. No, these pictures I retrieved from Google image search to give you an idea of the look we will be aiming for.

Right now we have dark wood cabinets, PINK countertops and backsplash, watermelon and cherry wallpaper and we had a hideous linoleum floor. I've told you what we plan to do with the floor. We're planning to keep the cabinets, sand them down and paint them white and add new hardware. We're planning to have new black stone countertops and backsplash installed. We want a timeless, classic look to go with our 1930s house. We'll see how close we get. Stay tuned for pictures and wish us luck!

Tuesday, April 13, 2010

Why do some people feel so threatened?

This billboard, erected on Route 1 in St. Augustine, Florida, was the victim of vandalism. It appears that somebody tried to pull it down.

The message on it reads: "Don't believe in God? You are not alone."

Why is that message so scary to whomever tried to pull it down? It's okay for them to say they believe in God, but it's not okay for someone to say they don't believe in God? Where are we, the Dark Ages?

I believe in God, but I also understand the Atheist's point of view. I am not threatened by the Atheist perspective. Maybe I take the Agnostic's point of view on this one, "I don't know and neither do you," so we can both think and believe as we will.

I believe what I believe, facts or proof aside, because that's the nature of faith. That said, it doesn't mean I am correct. It doesn't mean I am wrong. It does mean, to me anyway, living in a free country where the freedom OF religion and freedom FROM religion is protected, that I have a right to what I believe and so does the Atheist. I don't have the right to threaten, intimidate or silence the free speech of, or exercise of religion, or freedom from religion of my fellow Americans. I don't have to agree with them, but I do have to tolerate their different point of view, just as I expect them to tolerate my point of view.

Back to the billboard, what was that person thinking? Why did they feel so strongly that the message should come down? Did they think God needed their help? Did they feel threatened by the message? Are they so insecure in their own faith, that the mere suggestion that there is no God, makes them re-think their faith? Should those who don't believe in God feel threatened by church signs and professions of faith? Should those messages be eliminated? I am really trying to reason out "why" this was done, but I fear, "reason" doesn't figure in to the mindset of this individual.

Monday, April 12, 2010

In Case of Suicide Call...

Sometimes I get deep into my business day and things are chugging along like normal, when something out of the blue makes me stop and wonder.

So I received this call from a counselor at the Veteran's Administration and she leaves a message for me to return her call in reference to a mutual client.

When I call I get her answering machine which says she is a suicide prevention counselor and is unavailable at this time. She's very nice, calm and clear on her message as she tells all potential callers, "if this is an emergency, hang up and call 911," "if you are thinking of harming yourself call the suicide prevention hot line at..."

And I can't help but wonder, if I were thinking of harming or killing myself and I got a recording, what would I do? Would I snap out of my darkness temporarily, look around for a pen and a piece of paper to write down the number, then patiently check that I wrote down the number correctly before hanging up?

The only times I got that depressed, I never thought to call a suicide prevention hot line. I didn't want to talk to anyone. I was very quiet inside myself about my intentions and was very comfortable with the thought of ending it all.

Now I'm sure not everybody's experience was the same as mine, but I couldn't help thinking, if I had been the type to call for help and got that recording, I think I would have hung up before the number was even recited and went about my business. It was an odd feeling listening to a message that so easily could have applied to me years ago.

Thursday, April 8, 2010

On the topic of music...IT'S COMING!!

So one of my new found favorite shows, Glee, is coming back from Hiatus to resume their season on Tuesday night, on Fox. For any of you secret shower singers or car rock stars, this show is a guilty little pleasure. Oh to be able to sing like these young people do and be showcased for it, instead of being picked on, which is basically the premise of the show. The show takes place in high school, that remembered bastion of "I want to fit in and be liked" teenaged angst. So these theatre type geeks are in glee club and they're _really_ talented. The only problem is there are too few of them to compete. They are pushed around and abused by their fellow high school students on a daily basis because they are different and don't fit in. The first season was about recruiting other students to join glee (no easy feat). Then throw in a particularly nasty cheerleading coach played phenomenally well by Jane Lych, whose sole purpose in life is to destroy the glee club, and you have some fun drama. She sends some of her cheerleaders to join the group to spy on them and help sabotage them. Soon, football players are joining and there's a struggle of "who are you going to be" a jock or a geek? They do musical performances each show and more often than not, they're amazing. I can't wait until Tuesday. Who else out there is a Gleek?

Taiwan Singing Contest

I've frequently been told I have bad taste in music, so watch at your own risk. I've always loved this song. I loved the original version when Dolly Parton did it. I love Whitney Houston's version of it, and I think this guy did a bang up job with it as well.

Tuesday, April 6, 2010

Gallows Humor

Okay, I know some jokes are in poor taste, but sometimes that's what makes them funny.

I received the following joke from Comedy Central's joke of the day e-mail list I belong to. I'm only sharing this because it made me laugh and groan all at once.


I bought a bunch of land in upstate New York, and I built a bunch of cabins and bunks and things on it. Figured, I'm going to start a summer program for kids with ADD. I don't know, no one showed up. I don't know what I did wrong. I was calling it: Concentration Camp.


Last full day in Europe

Ahh, all good things must come to an end.  Our European vacation is drawing to a close.  We leave Nice this morning to drive back to Barcelo...