1 day ago
Tuesday, February 16, 2010
I had a pretty strange experience yesterday. As a favor to a friend I found myself in a conference room surrounded by a bunch of business guys eager to get legal advice on a number of corporate matters. My adrenaline started pumping as the trickle of legal concepts and strategies I presented became a torrent. I found myself excited, indeed intoxicated, by the magnificent edifice that is the law. And you know what? I enjoyed it.
Or did I? Maybe I've become so averse to opening any door that could let in the Jack of old that what I felt was not joy but relief. The bottom line is that, for the first time in a long time, I found myself enveloped in the exciting machinations of corporate law without all the baggage I felt back in the day. There are several reasons why this happened. It probably helped that the business guys in question run a company that isn't stuffy and that is ethically honest. It's also not lost on me that the progress I have made over the past several years has outfitted me with an impenetrable shield against all the BS I faced every day back at my old law firm.
But probably the most important reason is that I wasn't providing advice as a Big Law attorney. And I think that's why I might have felt relief during the meeting. I had always believed that my problem with Big Law was not Big Law itself but the tendendy of Big Law to encourage a lifestyle that was antithetical to my core beliefs. Suddenly, this belief was transformed into fact and I was free to love the law again, without having to reprise my role as an egocentric asshole lawyer.
Let me be very clear: I have ABSOLUTELY, POSITIVELY NO INTENTION of going back to corporate law. That being said, I consider yesterday's realization an unexpected gift.
Sunday, February 14, 2010
Friday, February 5, 2010
I don't think I'd be exaggerating if I were to admit that I was one of the biggest potheads in college. It's true. I had tried weed on and off back in high school but it wasn't until my crazy, sex/beer-filled freshman year that I fell in love with the pure, mellow joys of marijuana
My routine at the time was pretty simple: for each lecture/seminar I would only attend the very first class in order to pick up the syllabus and course schedule, and thereafter only show up for quizzes, midterms, and finals. Aside from a massive 2-week cramming session at the end of each semester, I had virtually the entire academic year to hang out with buddies, be with my girfriend(s?) and, or course, smoke some bud.
I only had one rule: I could smoke as much as I wanted so long as I got As in all my classes. (The irony is that the more I smoked, the easier it was to get those As. Go figure.)
And then came law school and the sudden realization that I was entering a profession with legit rules of ethics and professional responsibility. By that point, weed had lost its luster. Inhaling smoke, of any kind, seemed like an unbelievably stupid thing to do. The spiritual component that had originally drawn me to marijuana had long since been replaced by an urge to party. Suddenly, it made sense to hang up my bong.
Years later, bathed in the light of my trusty laptop, I take a long, smooth drag from a makeshift bong made from an aluminum can. The taste is still sweet. I just want to feel pure and mellow one last time.