Tuesday, October 24, 2006

When should one offer advice to a 1L?

Coming into the city on the El this morning I was surrounded by law students. My train in the morning usually consists of professionals in their morning commute into the city and it is a rare thing for me to see another shark in body armor sporting an uzi lawyer-in-training heading downtown.

The train, like most at 8:30 in the morning, was packed. There is no place to sit, little room to stand and we were all up in each other's business. I was flanked by two female law students with about 5 or 6 more students in the surrounding seats on either side of the doorway in which I was standing. They had their bulging backpacks, with casebooks in arm and laptop cases near their feet. Each of them must have had 30-40 extra pounds of worthless crap [definition of worthless: when the Bookstore sells a book for $110 and then offers you $3 for it at the end of the semester] making their trek to their school even more enjoyable.

The student to my right was attempting to be as diligent as the El allows and she caught my attention because of it (namely because I thought she was about to do a faceplant when the train hit a bump). She continually read and reread this one Contracts case. There was an underline under every single word in this 5 page opinion. The case name was highlighted. There was writing in the margins. And she was still going at it like a Adderall-infused gunner Hyena as the train continued Loop-ward.

I remember trying to study caselaw on the train; I learned nothing and I usually started to get dizzy. I wanted to say something pithy to her like 'the procedural history of a 200 year old case does not matter' or 'you won't remember this 2 minutes after your final' or 'save your soul' but I decided against offering up my two cents worth. To be studying First Semester Contract law in the Urine Smelling CTA is bad enough...