And then I awoke…

Just this and one more week and I’ll be finished my first year of law school. Never really thought I’d write that. But, then I never much thought I’d write a lot of things.

The hardest part has been the fact that I’m surrounded by twenty -something year old rich kids. That is who goes to law school. Rich kids in their twenties.

Me? Not so rich. Almost 40.

What do I hate about them? Where do I start… It’s the sneering sense of entitlement. The fancy cars that cost far more than my wife’s far and mine combined. And far more than a 23 year old could hope to afford. It was purchased for him (or, as the case often is, her). Audi, BMW, Mercedes, Lexis. Me? Ten year old Oldsmobile with 120 thousand on it.

American, baby. I’ve got nothing to prove.

They have a collective world view that I do not pretend to understand. Four grand to golf is reasonable? Dad flying into Phoenix on his private jet to take you do dinner? Flying to L.A. on a “day trip to shop for shoes”?

Another things that is slowly killing me is the incessant homophobia. There is a clear negative view by at least half my “peers” regarding denying rights to homosexuals. Marginalized because they deserve it? They brought this on themselves? Gay is a choice? Not around your children? Do you even have any children?

Enough. Back to studying. Kill me.

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About big jonny

The man, the legend. The guy who started it all back in the Year of Our Lord Beer, 2000, with a couple of pages worth of idiotic ranting hardcoded on some random porn site that would host anything you uploaded, a book called HTML for Dummies (which was completely appropriate), a bad attitude (which hasn’t much changed), and a Dell desktop running Win95 with 64 mgs of ram and a six gig hard drive. Those were the days. Then he went to law school. Go figure. Flagstaff, Arizona, USA

33 thoughts on “And then I awoke…

  1. bj – what i would like to know is where are the professors coming from? who do they coddle? what are their positions on these social issues?

    and please tell me you don’t hold back on these silver spoon nitwits. i’d be happy to attend the next class happy hour w/ you.

  2. I am also fining myself back in school in my 30s. I’m not really amongst the privileged but I can’t believe how dumb the kids are today, and how narrow their world view. I’ll be a miracle if I don’t kill myself by this time next year.

  3. BJ- I read a quote from somewhere earlier today that read “99 percent of liars/lawyers give the rest a bad name.” Keep fighting the good fight and stay in the 1%er club when the duckets start rollin in…

    I’ve considered getting back in to the academic groove as well but my ol’ lady still needs convincing. We’ll see…

  4. Try working next door to Harvard. Entitled pricks wander the streets aimlessly looking for their next over-priced latte.

    I feel for ya.

  5. You can still stop, lest you become an actual lawyer (like I did).

    Congratulations. Its a struggle to stay human once you pass the bar, but it can be done.

  6. hey, congrats on nearly finishing your first year. that’s where i was in, um, in 1981. what’s THAT about!?!?
    listen, man, the good thing–no, make that GREAT thing–is that those entitlement asshole classmates of yours will never give you grief again once you get out.

    unless the little fucks become judges. and, eh, what are the odds, right?

    but once you DO get out, it’s all worth it. seriously. even if you NEVER practice. folks will know you’re a lawyer, and they DO give you some space. i shit you not. it’s amazing.
    but it’s because we ARE smarter, and we DO know more than they do.
    if you want me to share stories, here’s just two from friday:
    1–a client, classmate of my daughter, both in nursing school, had HIV-tainted bloody feces splashed in her eye from a dying hospice patient. her employer, a fucking HOSPITAL, denied her critical treatment.
    i got it taken care of in just one phone call. might have saved her life. probably not, but no thanks to the fucking MEDICAL profession.
    2–client broke up with her fiance. he threatened to sue. shit drags out. on and on. HIS lawyer is one of those just-out-of-law school shitheads you now despise. after three or four weeks, i get him to absolutely drop the entire thing. [long, long story made VERY short.]
    3–then, later that evening [i really AM a minister, too], i officiate at my first legal same-sex wedding.
    i LOVE it. so good for you, jonny. don’t let those entitled jerks get to you. life ain’t fair, but soon, you’ll be holding a better hand.
    clean living, man.
    one last tip: get a job that allows you to do what you REALLY enjoy. if you don’t like what you do, QUIT RIGHT AWAY!!
    end of sermonette.

  7. BJ, Keep up the good fight. I have seen some of what you are going through first hand, as the son of a lawyer that went through law school while helping to raise four kids. My Dad went to law school just out of the Marines, with four young kids. Those pricks have no idea what you go through when you get home, feeding, bathing, reading to and putting to bed children and then finding sometime to study. My friends that are lawyers have more respect for him and someone in your shoes. Good Job.

  8. Comfort yourself in the knowledge that some American states are getting it right (though not quite as right as, say South Africa), but let’s face it, most of the comments are right, I mean, I’ve nearly committed murder in tutorials (like you, I’m almost double the age of most of the other students). Comfort yourself with this, your bike is way cooler than theirs’, because theirs’ is a car…..Bring on the revolution, for it shall be on two wheels……

  9. I am now almost 11 years out of law school (UC-Hastings in San Francisco). I have worked, among other things, as a criminal defense attorney and a felony-level prosecutor while serving as a military JAG (in one memorable instance, I sent a serial child molester to prison for life) before separating from the service and moving into civil litigation.

    Based on my experience, law students are, as a whole, the lowest form of human life. I don’t know what I make of your decision to attend law school – I don’t generally recommend it to people because I think the cons outweigh the pros for most of us – but if you elect to complete school I can reassure you that practicing lawyers aren’t as evil as law students, and as a lawyer you have a far greater ability to avoid the assholes than you do as a student. In addition, second and third years aren’t nearly as awful as first year.

    Good luck, man!

  10. Ok. You run (straight) porn on your site and complain about people being homophobes. Huh. Not everyone in law school is like you describe – I understand being older than the rest of the “fresh out of undergrad” set, but really, you are one of them. It may not seem like it to you, but to people in the outside world, you are. Wherever you wind up, biglaw, nonprofit, or med mal – you come out with the same degree and school on your resume – never forget it. The trouble with law school is that everyone around you is smart (mostly), sense of entitlement or not. Ride your bike, bust your ASS in school (seriously – the market sucks), and make the OTHER guy work to catch up.

  11. I can’t speak for law school, but as someone BJ’s age, and in school again after many years (working on my Pimp’n ho Doctorate in biology), I don’t know that it is entirely the economic class of students (although I hated that group growing up and when I was an undergraduate. If you are driving daddy’s M-B you shouldn’t be going to a state school…) Student attitudes have changed. I have an extra credit question on some of my practicals, which is essentially whether you believe it is effort or command of the material that you should be graded on. 50%+ believe that it should be effort. (Do you want your MoneyDoctor passed on effort?!). 15 years ago I wouldn’t have dreamed of suggesting that my grade should be based on effort, and that because I “tried really hard” I should pass.

    Maybe I was just blind to this attitude at the time. As much as I believe courses can be taught better, I don’t understand the sense of entitlement. We’ve got a generation of post-Reaganites who believe that they are entitled to the good life of cell phones and iPods in class. As much as I don’t want a depression, it will be very good for us in the long run if people actually learn that they have to work their asses off to succeed, and that we aren’t entitled to shit (and I say that from about as liberal viewpoint as is possible. We need safety nets, for those who are willing to work at it.) We need to be willing to fail students, and tell them that there is no shame in the trades. Whatever you choose to do, be the best at it. Choosing a trade does not mean you have to stop learning.

    Bust your ass, be the best student in school, know your subject better than all the self-entitled pricks, and don’t let them up when they come at you with weak arguments. They’ll come around they see your professors agreeing with you. You are working for yourself. Period. The only people you need to impress are your professors. If they are worth anything, they will appreciate a (respectful) challenge. They should be training colleagues, not drones. Yeah, some of those pricks will get the same degree as you, but in the big picture, it doesn’t matter.

  12. Just think…that haughty sense of entitlement + a law degree + influential parentage = the next generation of “representative” politicians.

    Question: Is it a choice, or are they “born that way?”

    I love that our little segment of the world believes that there really does need to be losers out there, and jefe’s idea that a depression will be character-building on a national level, but largely thanks to the liberal ideals so-recently embraced by just over half of this country (i.e. the “every-game-ends-in-a-tie set), these kids are just plain soft. I think all of us would stand by and have a good laugh at reality running roughshod over this mindset, but instead, society seems to be bending over and further accomodating/coddling this future…and it’s damn scary. My wife is a middle-school teacher in a mildly affluent neighborhood…she can’t even give a detention out of fear of parental reprisal (and often, the principal takes the parents’ side in the interest of placating). Instead of learning right from wrong, the kid learns how to “beat the system”. And probably gets a new Wii to help them deal with the emotional trauma of the situation. But hey…at least its exercise!

    As tough as law school sounds, it sounds even tougher to maintain your moral objectivity. Cudos to those of you that have managed to swing both.

  13. B: The degree on your resume is what us math geeks call a necessary but not sufficient condition. I once watched a PhD from MIT get absolutely bitch slapped at a public faculty interview (at a state university no less) because he thought he was too special to answer the questions he was being asked. Just because these kids graduate with sheets of paper that open the same doors doesn’t mean they have the insights to not get kicked right back out.

  14. Money, class, and entitlement. And yet they are as confused, lonely, self doubting, ultimately cut adrift as any other human walking the planet. The difference may be character. I think we all wait and watch to see if our Big J will be the one. “Senator BJ from Arizona has made a bold move today, banning automobile traffic in all ……….” And to think it all started with beer, bikes, and porn.

  15. Why the “f” do you do it? Just stay home, watch your kids grow up, ride your bike and let your wife do all the workin’. It’s a new century.

  16. I rise to applaud the decrepit old dude’s first year coming in for a landing.
    attaboy.
    Having NOT become decrepit in the same manor as going to law school, but but working for law firms and judges, I can say this.
    The various forms of asshatery can grow and blossom well beyond LS twerps to senior partner why-beacause-I-can twerps, and my personal favorite, the federal judge who-the-fuck-god-think-she-is-anyway twerps.
    Not each & everyone, but many + more.
    And here & there, a few knots in the otherwise smooth planks, that make it interesting.

  17. Do whatcha like! Don’t let the hater’s get you down. Those stupid kids don’t realize it now, but some day a few of those little pricks will look back, and realize how lucky they were to have you in their class to challenge them. Not all, just a few of them. One of those homophobes will probably end up working for the gay rights movement, after some eye opening experience. I don’t know if any of this makes you feel any better, but if you try, I bet you can use them to learn as well. May not be directly related to class topics. Could be something to help with parenting. Seeing where your kids could be 15+ years from now could help you decide on some things you really want to make sure they understand, when they arrive?…
    Just food for thought. You can learn something from everyone!

  18. Big Jonny…

    RE: entitled twenty-somethings driving spendy cars, “Youth is wasted on the young…”

    Good on ya for makin’ through your first year of Law School….just attempting Law School is a big feather in your cap knowing you have kids/wife/drinking habit/love of bikes/blog/etc, ad nauseum….

    Keep up the good work…

    M

  19. Youth is wasted on the young…

    Good on ya, especially knowin’ you have kids/wife/blog/love of bikes/drinking habit/etc., etc., etc…..

    Keep up the good work..
    M

  20. WOW…

    Hey The Mostly Reverend

    Just thought maybe I’d educated your narrow minded attorney ass- it is the fucking administrators in the medical field (many of who are either not doctors or sucked as doctors) that fuck things up.

    Don’t bust on the medical field as a whole, especially to those of us who ETHICALLY practice and do the most important thing- which is doing what is right for the patient, regardless of fee or favor.

    Do I charge a patient for a 15 minute phone call when they call because they want clarification on something or have an additional small question answered? NO. Why? Because I’m there to HELP

    I’ve got plenty of invoices from attorneys for bullshit like that. I’ve also grown accustomed to realizing when the attorney or paralegal starts rambling or repeating just to get past the 7.5 minute mark so they can bill for a 15 minute phone conversation.

  21. Hey bikescag,
    Weren’t you paying attention?
    Lawyers “ARE smarter, and we DO know more than” everyone else! I mean come on, how hard can the MCAT test be? The next four years are just a walk in the park, from what I hear. Anyone can do a bone marrow transplant. Try passing the BAR exam, DUDE! I’m sure he saved that chicks life, after the hospital failed to do so!!!! What an arrogant prick!

  22. uhm, flanders,
    wouldn’t that be a,..uhm…
    a ‘butt opening’ experience, instead?

    I mean, just guessin here.

    eye opening didn’t sound quite right.

  23. Good point! Although it could be refered to as a brown eye, I suppose…

  24. The good thing about a lot of the super entitled, from my experience at least, is that they have had it too easy and don’t have the drive.
    A lot will be content to become partners in one of daddy’s friend’s firms and waddle around getting fat, playing golf, and being a pain in the ass for someone else. A fair portion won’t see the need in working harder than is necessary for a solid six figure check and the scripted lifestyle.

    The ones that do strive to become judges and politicos are the scary ones since they probably have good connections etc.
    Sometimes I think our country on average has gotten a little too fat and lazy due to the efforts of our parents and grandparents. We don’t understand truly hard work. And why would you if things were generally handed to you.

    The homophobes are probably just angry because they get keep getting excited by the pics of shirtless young men on the abercrombie and fitch store walls.

  25. No amount of privelege can buy the satisfaction
    of standing on your own two feet and carriying
    your own weight. We know what it’s like to stand
    at the top of a mountain having gotten there under our
    own power. That’s a felling you can’t buy or give. You’ll have that
    on graduation day no matter what you decide to do the next morning.
    Good luck my man.

  26. Know your enemy and hold them close, however repulsive they may be.
    Ignorance and arrogance combined in one human being (as it often is) is one of the most offensive characteristics of human beings everywhere.
    My wish for you is that one day you are granted the opportunity to rub their faces in their own shit, graciously.
    You go, man.

  27. Hey Flanders

    I know people who have both an M.D. and J.D. degree. You forgot one thing a-hole- this little thing called Board Certification. I can tell you that the people I know who have both degrees have told me the BAR is like a high school 10 question quiz compared to Board Certification exams. I can also tell you these same people have clearly stated that the MCAT is DEFINITELY more difficult than the LSAT.

    You obviously weren’t paying attention either- it was the HOSPITAL ADMINISTRATION (and I REPEAT, many in the administrative roles aren’t even physicians) that didn’t want to take care of her, not the physicians at the hospital.

  28. Correct me if I’m wrong but I do believe Flanders was using a little bit of the ol’ sarcasm…

  29. always glad to help the discussion along, folks.
    as long as the docs allow the hmos to control their professions, they ARE part of the medical profession.
    by the way, i DON’T charge for phone calls, i do thousands of dollars worth of FREE legal service every year, and so forth.
    lighten up, bikescag. i KNOW most docs and nurses and so forth ARE ethical, but just as with the few money-grubbing slimeballs who give lawyers a bad name, don’t think you guys go blameless, either. okay?
    “one bad apple don’t spoil the whole bunch, girl…”
    but it DOES make the whole refrigerator stink.

  30. Up here in Pugetropolis, the legal profession is dominated by homosexuals. It’s actually a little scary when any special interest dominates a market like that. A fellow I know ran for a minor judge position and The Stranger (Seattle’s gay-friendly gossip newspaper) printed an op-ed article saying he was homophobic NEVER HAVING INTERVIEWED HIM. Then the Bar Association, with openly gay leadership, rated him ‘unfit’ or some such. Guess what? The gay candidate won. So maybe it depends on where you live. Keep the rubber side down.