01 September 2008

I'm dramatic and pessimistic but that's why this is a semi-interesting read

Posted by Shake sense into me

I realize that my posts haven't really been too light hearted and happy like posts of my peers, but law school really isn't all fun and games for me.  It's serious work.

I'm in law school to learn, and I am.  The people aren't my favorite, but I guess they aren't that bad.  It's not as if there are people actually razoring out pages in books, or anything.  They are just outwardly competitive on every level right now, probably because they are scared shitless of what their grades are going to end up like - just like me.  I choose to keep my study hours to myself, but some people feel better when they let everyone know how sad their life is by the number of hours they study.
I think a lot of my problem with 1Ls comes down to how I am processing everything.  Everyone is looking for some type of competitive advantage - hornbooks, E&Es, CALI lessons, study groups, study hours, lack of social life.  Mine is really a combination of all of those, but I wouldn't really call it a competitive advantage because I am doing all of those things so that I understand what the heck is happening, not because I want to know more than somebody else.  I have this fear that I'm going to get my exam and not know what is happening.  I also fear being at the bottom of my class.  And I have talked to some other students about this and I have gotten some support, which is nice.  But I've also been condescended to no end by people who I thought were a little more friendly.  

What I need to do is keep my chin up and just press on as though none of that is getting to me.  I think remaining human, and even wearing my heart on my sleeve, is my true competitive advantage because no one is going to hire an awkward law nerd who can't communicate with other humans. 


Kel said...

I'll readily admit that I'm lost in class already. I've spent a lot of time trying to figure out what is going on and I finally think I'm getting somewhere.

When I try to talk about briefs, or studying with some of my classmates I get the feeling that the subject (of studying or briefing) is so beneath them. You would think talking to others would help you learn new techniques, but they feel like it's some secret process.

I know how you feel right now.

I'd tell you a joke to lift your spirits but I'm in need of a good one myself!

The Legal Optimist said...

I'm sorry it seems that it is a really stressful and competitive atmosphere! Keep your head up and try your best to ignore the negative stuff.

Are there any people in your section who seem positive/happy with law school?

Lawful Lady said...


Silly Little Law Student said...

There's no shame in being in the bottom of the class so long as you graduate.

Don't worry you'll be fine. Sticking to your "stay human" plan sounds like a good one.

Shake sense into me said...

kel: i'm glad somebody understands me.
optimist: i'm a pessimist, and i honestly have yet to meet someone that's completely positive about law school. it probably isn't all that bad, i'm pretty sensitive/dramatic, so you should probably take everything i say with a grain of salt. but ya...positive law students? oxymoron.
lawful lady: hallelujah!
silly: the thought of underperforming freaks me out still.

Silly Little Law Student said...

I understand that the thought of underperforming freaks you out... but it scares all of us.

After your first job, rankings mean nothing (I know it feels like they mean a lot for that first job... but it's really about who you make connections with).

But rather my point (which perhaps didn't come across properly in my previous comment) is that even if you end up in the bottom half of the class, it doesn't mean you aren't going to be as good of a lawyer as those golden children in the top 10. Hell half the time the top part of the class is full of people who can take tests well, and are
a.) devoid of personality;
b.) can't relate to clients;
c.) will get stuck as "backroom" of a firm and not allowed to see the light of day;
d.) lack common sense; and
e.) probably are worse at practical skills than those of us who chose not to spend our time in the "academic" endeavors of law review and such.

Regardless of where you end up in the class, just know that it's just a number.

Stay human and keep your personality. You'll end up better off than you think.