The Academy

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Friday, May 30, 2003
I demand an explanation for this. Have awesome weekends - I want full reports, thoughts and comments by midweek next week.

Making up for lost time

I am distressed that Mindy's mom thinks our little blog looks "funny." In an effort to keep Mindy's mom happy, I am going to publish TWO posts today.

My brother was going to get married last December in Chile, but at the last minute, he and his Chilean bride got cold feet. Their feet were pretty warm right up until lots of relatives had flown to Chile and checked into their hotels. My father was among those relatives who arrived in Chile in time to receive the news that the wedding was called off. He wasn't pleased.

But don't be sad because the story for my brother and his Chilean bride does not end there. They cuddled up to some sort of space heater and warmed their footsies again. They are getting married tomorrow. Hooray!

Here's where the humor sets in. This wedding will be in my parents' backyard. That's right. The same father who was displeased in Chile is now hosting Wedding #2 in his very own, carefully mown backyard. He rented a tent and everything. I think my parents figure that by having the wedding on their own land, there is a better chance of a marriage actually occurring. We'll see about that.

Because my brother and his bride were somewhat chagrined by the cancellation of Wedding #1, they said they wanted to have a very small Wedding #2. Oh, you know, 20 people or so. Just family. Real small. We could throw some meat on the grill and get a keg. That was two months ago. At last count, my parents are expecting 45 guests. My mother has had to call the equipment rental company about 5 times to add tables and chairs. Oh, and to request a bigger tent.

As the guest list expanded in the past few weeks, my mother grew concerned about the strain this would put on the ONE toilet in their house. I think her concern was rational. Their house is about 250 years old and the plumbing ain't a whole lot newer. So a 45 to 1 person to toilet ratio did sound pretty bad. My mother wisely called Al, the local port-a-potty specialist, and he concurred in her judgment that some extra potties were needed.

Now, while my mother has been making arrangements of the port-a-potty sort for the past few weeks, my father has been busily grooming lawns and shrubs and trees and flowers and such. They have divided their chores along inside-outside lines. The inside-outside chore distinction was blurred, however, on Wednesday.

Good ole Al, the port-a-potty man, arrived to deliver the potties as scheduled. He and my mother hadn't really factored in several weeks of rain and the huge weight of his delivery truck. So, when Al arrived and looked DOWN the hill that precedes by parents' backyard, he was a little nervous. But the mighty and fearless Al just barreled on DOWN the hill into the backyard and unloaded the two potties. And then Al looked back UP the hill. "Don't worry," he said to my mother, "I'll get this here truck outa here, no problem!" He was partly correct. He got the truck out of the yard eventually. But he left an enormous mess behind -- huge ruts in the lawn, mud strewn everywhere, carefully seeded and mown lawn torn to shreds.

My mother stood in the rain (which, according to the latest forecast, will continue through the weekend) and called my father, a/k/a Lawnmower Man. He was displeased about the the cancellation of Wedding #1 in Chile. But he was REALLY displeased about the rape of his lawn by the Port-a-Potty Man.

Wedding #2 has started to feel a lot like 'Meet the Parents.' Come to think of it, my brother does have some Ben Stiller-ian qualities . . .

Those were the days . . .

I enjoyed Robert's stroll down memory lane back to the Summer of 2000. Man, that was good. He sure did capture the flavor of being a summer associate back in the day. Except for the part about actually getting an assignment. That really wasn't part of my experience. Or maybe they did give me "work" to do, but I was too hungover to recognize that it was meant to be an "assignment." I did find that making up things for my timesheet was an arduous task. Does that count as an "assignment"?

It took a little time for me to adopt the entitlement 'tude that summer. I went in thinking that I should make every effort to "get some experience" and "see what firm life is like." Heck, I probably even wanted to learn something. I abandoned all of those crazy notions by the end of the first cocktail party. After that, I was basically a fattened calf for the rest of the summer. I just kept following the herd to the next feeding. At some point, though, the boredom set in, and I began to expect more . . . and more . . . And that is how I joined the Class of Entitlement from the Summer of 2000.

So, just to be clear. Y'all are saying that being an actual lawyer at the firm is NOT going to be like that? You're sure about that?

Thursday, May 29, 2003
I am deeply ashamed. Do you mean to tell me that Mindy's mother reads this? I am going to stop using dirty words AND not be so explicit about sodomy. Of course, Mindy did share with her family a certain birthday video which featured a rather foul-mouthed, slightly psychotic manly female friend of mine, so maybe I shouldn't feel so insecure.

Wednesday, May 28, 2003
Your Blog Looks Funny

Its kind of a sad comment when your mother sends you an email complaining about your failure to post to your blog recently. She also announced that it "looks funny." I don't think it looks funnier than usual, though, so I'm going to ignore her.

Ah, to be a summer associate again! What would I do differently? Well, for one, if I had had any idea that three years later I still would not be rid of the 16 pounds I gained on four star lunches I might have.....who am I kidding? I would've stuffed myself at Jean Georges and Le Bernardin just the same.

I recently had to confront my failure to do anything of consequence in the summer of 2000. The law firm that I'm going to work for in August was conducting a thorough reference check. During one awkward telephone call with a partner, I was asked for the names of partners at my summer firm for whom I did substantive legal writing. What to say? "Um, can I count a lengthy email comparing the valrhona chocolate cake at various local eateries with my childhood memories of the slightly undercooked brownie in Hungry Man tv-dinners? It was kinda Proustian, if that matters....." OK, I didn't say that. What I did say was: "Do you remember the summer of 2000? It was quite a summer." After a pause, he said, "So there aren't any partners for whom you did substantive legal writing? How about associates?" Awkward silence. Quite a summer, indeed.

My recommendation to Robert and my other associate friends who are entertaining the youngun's this season: opt for sushi. Its hard to do too much damage to your body with raw fish and rice.