Saturday, July 31, 2004

Thursday, July 29, 2004


The day started off well enough. I was in a pretty good mood, got a respectable amount of work done in the morning hours, and even spread some cheer to others not having a good day. Well, I tried anyway - we'll see if it worked.

Then I realized that I have just enough money to cover my mandatory bills but not nearly enough money to actually LIVE until I get my refund check when the school year starts. Then I started stressing about the "check engine" light again. Then I started stressing about Mr. Too Good To Be True, then I started picking apart all of my flaws, and started gearing up for the inevitable demise and crushing of hopes. It's going to end eventually (soon), so why even start, but why won't he call, and I'd really love to spend as much time with him as I can before I leave, but that would just suck too. And I'm a freak. Who wants to hang out with a broke, insecure, bug-eyed, ugly-footed freak?

So you can see why the day didn't end so well.

Now I'm going to try to finish up this darned project so I can get back to my kids tomorrow.

Wednesday, July 28, 2004

Best. Night. Ever.

Spent the day at work staring at the computer screen.

Evening plans rained out.

Return of the "check engine" light on a dark and stormy stretch of highway.

Bad day? Not at all.

Evening plans turned into even better plans, despite being drenched to the bone and shivering. Met wonderful person, met wonderful person's wonderful friends, then met semi-famous person. Have been avoiding meeting wonderful person out of fear and insecurity. Was friendly with him and his friends, at the end of the night, unsure of what next. I like him very much. I msged him a "thanks for a great night" on my ride home. He msged back twice - once with a "I can't wait to see you again" and next with "and you look good wet too."

Oh dearest Lord in Heaven. Really?

Sunday, July 25, 2004

Walk of shame.

And it wasn't even MY walk of shame.

But nevertheless, I am the one walking /subwaying home on a cool, quiet Sunday morning, dressed like a hooker, smudged eyeliner, reeking of beer and cigarettes. I think people have taken note of the fact that I'm not dressed for church.

Time for a shower, sweatpants, coffee, and the Sunday paper.

Saturday, July 24, 2004

And it all falls down.

I've had a wonderfully exciting day that has entailed sitting in front of my desk at home, in my sweatpants and a scraggly oversized t-shirt, scouring the internet for information on who makes decisions regarding medication for confined juveniles. This hasn't been pleasant at all. This isn't how I wanted to spend my last few weekends in the city.

I was pleasantly interrupted by a brief phone call from a friend from law school. I haven't spoken to him at all this summer, and I hardly hung out with him at all last year, but I love him dearly and he and I were quite close our first year. We chatted briefly and then he had to catch his train. I wasn't particularly chatty or enthusiastic, since I'm a little overwhelmed by this research, so I felt bad and emailed him an apology, promising to catch up better in person.

I found myself folding my laundry later, wondering how I would describe to him what kind of summer I've had. I started thinking about each individual client, and thinking about the system as a whole, and thinking about what the view from my office window looks like. I started sniffling, then a few tears rolled down my cheeks, and then I started a full-scale cry. It's difficult to explain why I'm crying, even. There are no words for this overwhelming wave of emotion I get when I think about my job and thinking about leaving it.

When the summer began, I was motivated by my horror. Horror at seeing children in shackles, in cold cement cells, sleeping alone every night so far away from their home and their family. Then I was motivated by anger. Anger that no one else cared, everyone else wanted these kids locked up more and more, and no one was trying to help them change. But suddenly, I was motivated by how deeply I adore each and every one of the residents in this facility. I used to see them walk across the yard, hands behind their back, single file, and was horrified that they looked handcuffed. It was like a kick in the gut. Then I was angry that someone came up with such a rule - why not hands in the front of them? Now, when I look out and see the lines as they walk across the yard, I am overcome with pride and affection for what wonderful young men they are, and how amazing and incredible each of them are, and I am filled with hope that they will leave this place someday, if not sooner than later, and will lead happy and productive lives.

When I think back at the horrible stories I've heard, and the small tragedies I've witnessed, it's not those things that stand out in my mind. When I look back on my summer, what stands out most is that DESPITE this things, a resident will still come into the office with a bright smile, might even laugh; that despite the rampant injustice, they can still have wonderfully insightful conversation about the law in street law class; that they still, despite all of these things, are holding out with the hope that this will all be over soon. I'll never forget the one resident, the most caring and selfless one I've met, the one who is more insightful about people than any social worker I've ever met, the one who makes it his job to laugh and joke and cheer up the staff around the facility - one day, he came in and chatted pleasantly with me. Then, for a brief moment, for the first time I've ever seen, a shadow passed over his face, he frowned briefly, and said softly, "I sure would like to be out of here soon. Man, I've been here too long. Too long."

The next day, I was walking into the building and saw a resident that I had worked with several times shackling up. He was always pleasant, smiling, and calm, just wonderful to be around, and one day he thanked me because I called him by his name and he told me that I was the only one in the place that remembered his name. I said to him, "Hey! It looks like you're getting out of here! Where are you headed?" He had a huge grin on his face and said, "Hey, I beat XX charge, I'm going to another placement now." I congratulated him and wished him the best, with instructions to call the office to let us know how he was doing and where he was. A few days later, his attorney came to the office and talked about how upset she was that she won one trial, lost another the previous week. I said, "Hey, didn't you have John Doe last week?" and she said sadly, "Yeah, that's the trial that I lost. It was so upsetting because he was actually innocent." I told her that I had seen him, and that he had raved about how wonderful she was, and he was so excited about how she practically laughed the government's main witness out of the courtroom. I told her that he felt like he was truly well-represented and was so pleased to be leaving the facility, even if it was just to go to another (better) one. She was so happy that she cried, because she was so appalled at the outcome of the case. I was shocked to learn the outcome because he was just so happy and pleased with how things went - and despite the fact that he was innocent, that the eyewitness stated that he was not the perpetrator, that there was absolutely no physical evidence at all, and the judge convicted him anyway - he was still smiling.

Despite the abuse by the courts and law enforcement and society at large, despite the fact that he was locked up in the midst of all this, one afternoon a resident wandered alone across the yard and stopped in the middle of the sidewalk, did a small little dance for about 30 seconds, thinking that no one was watching - and then proceeded along his way.

And that's why I cry.

Friday, July 23, 2004


I have a thing for Karim Garcia.

I've tried to quit. I've tried to go cold turkey, I've tried to replace him with Red Sox crushes, I've tried mustering up the hate that I felt when he and Pedro got into it in the ALCS last year. But I have a crush on him.

And while the Red Sox were playing the Yankees I instead chose to watch, of all things, the Orioles. Why? Karim Garcia.

But hey, Kevin Millar! You were my boyfriend last year. You really pulled through tonight. Good job. And by the way, Red Sox, if you could field balls as well as the Orioles did when you played them this past week, you wouldn't be 9.5 games behind the Yankees. Sooooo, how's about we stop trying to buy pitchers and hitters and start trying to teach y'all how to run to catch a ball?

Tuesday, July 20, 2004

At least they came back.

Inmates leave jail, return with beer.
Come on now, are you really going to charge these guys for that?

The joys of working with juveniles.

Oh my, is it ever a journey. I had a "first" yesterday - I was honestly hit on by one of my clients. That leads me to believe that I may be conducting myself in a manner that does not appropriately demonstrate the professional distinction between myself and my clients. Hey, I'm glad he's comfortable in my presence and all, but whoa. At first I thought he was much older but when I verified his birthdate today, it made me feel better. If he had been as old as I thought he was, it would have been much more worrisome. I'm trying to be really careful with my words and actions now.

In the NY Times today, there is an article about a young man who was charged as an adult at he age of 17 for the murder of his parents. Apparently he gave a confession that was manipulated out of him. I adamantly believe that juvenile confessions should be presumptively invalid because they cannot knowingly waive their rights, and it looks like this case is just another example.

Monday, July 19, 2004

Do it... do it...

Supreme Court asked to end juvenile death penalty.

It's difficult for me to imagine why people are so focused on punishing juveniles. In today's Washington Post, there was an article about DC declaring a crime emergency, in response to the underage driver 'epidemic' in the city. It's so much easier to denounce juveniles when you read about their crimes. But what I've learned from working with juvenile delinquents this summer is that when you meet them as individuals, it's so much more difficult. You see their childhood, you meet the ones that have grown up in the system, the ones that have children that they truly want to raise well, but they're only kids themselves. I can't stand that there are people who don't know kids and don't care to know them, but wouldn't hesitate to send them away to prison in the blink of an eye. And to think that someone would want to EXECUTE children... it's just horrendous.

An eye for an eye leaves Mitt Romney blind.

ABA website on the juvenile death penalty. I didn't know that there really were juveniles on death row in this country.

Saturday, July 17, 2004

And it feels like... home...

I managed to make it here, despite the fact that my "Check Engine" light came on twice during the trip.  Generally this means that my car is overheating; however, the first time it came on I pulled over, popped the hood, didn't see anything amiss, then started the car again and it was fine.  The second time, I pulled over across 2 lanes of traffic again and as soon as I was slowing down in the breakdown lane, the light went off.  I tried calling my mechanic today but they were closed.  I guess I'm going to try to make the 6 hr drive back tomorrow, but given my excellent luck with my car during summer trips, there's a chance that I'll be stuck in the middle of nowhere, in the rain, with no cell phone reception, waiting for someone to help me out and tow me to a garage that might be open on a Sunday. 
It's been such a wonderful day so far that I wish my "check engine" light would come on TODAY so I could call in to work on Monday and just bring my car to the garage here.  I got to sleep in my own bed last night and it was great to be back in my house.  Mysteriously, despite the fact that we continue to pay for it, the cable and internet are down.  While it is tragic, it also makes the weekend feel more away.  I went to my very favorite grocery store this morning to grab a muffin, coffee, and cleaning supplies, and I ran into a friend from law school who is studying for the bar.  I am tickled pink when I run into people I know out in the community.  Then I cleaned the house until it sparkled.  Which it does.  Then I showered and headed over to the state park so I could lay a blanket near a waterfall, bask in sunlight, and jump into the foot of the waterfall.  Well I did bask in some sun, but the water was SO COLD that I was in there less than a minute.  Then it got gray and rainy, so I left less than 2 hours after I got there.  Went home, fired up the grill.  Sun came back out.  Grill fizzled out and has been smoldering all afternoon.  It won't light enough to cook a damned burger but it also refuses to go out.  So I fired up the George Foreman, cooked the burgers inside and ate them outside.  I'm in the law school library right now printing out a form and seeing people in here studying for the bar makes it feel like the school year never ended.
I've missed this place so much.  My favorite grocery store, coffee shops, clothing store, people.  I can't believe I'm going to spend another semester away.  I want another day to bask in the feeling of home and community but alas, I have to leave early enough to allow my car time to break down in a timely fashion.
Tonight, a friend from law school is coming into town and we're doing our usual routine of dinner and movie.  I'm delighted.

Thursday, July 15, 2004

Tuesday, July 13, 2004

Your worst nightmare.

It's like checking for the Boogeyman under your bed, or turning on the lights to make sure the shadows are just from the trees outside. It's something that you know doesn't happen or doesn't exist, but your fears overcome logic and you can't help but to succumb, you just have to verify that indeed, this is just a figment of your imagination.

Except today, imagination became reality.

I walked to the mailbox to drop in my rent check and when I opened the blue lid, I saw...SOMEONE ELSE'S MAIL. You know how you always open the lid again to make SURE that your mail dropped? Well there ya go. Someone got sloppy and forgot to do the check-again lift. I used to just think that I was silly and just being obsessive. I've been validated.

Today was a long, long day at work. I didn't open the door to my house until 9:05 pm, at which point I turned on the All-Star game and was delighted to discover that Roger Clemens gave up 6 runs. Boo-yeah. Check out this article on Slate, very funny.

I like working late because then I have the office all to myself, and I can meet with the kids one on one, on my own terms. I ended up speaking with two clients for an hour each. I've developed a great working relationship with both of them and I got the highest compliment I could wish for - one young man who is generally unhappy and moody when I see him said to me so very kindly with a big old smile, "I wish you were my lawyer on the outside." I was so flattered. That's an indication that I've earned his respect and his trust and with this client population, that can be quite difficult. I actually represented an individual in a hearing today, the third one I've done with him in 2 days, and he wanted to speak to one of my coworkers today about something instead of me. He explicitly stated so. I understand, and I kindly deferred to my coworker, but that still stung. I've worked with him on 3 cases but I think his actions indicated to me that even though we got a favorable finding for him, we still didn't connect in a way that he truly felt like I was a good advocate for him. So it was nice to hear at the end of the day that there are some individuals that feel as though I might be doing a good job.

Monday, July 12, 2004

Divine intervention

I can't imagine doing any job other than the one I'm doing right now.

In my first week of training, one attorney advised us that doing criminal defense work is not a job; it's a calling, an avocation. Thinking back to last fall, and all of my unsuccessful interviewing, I can't help but think that this was truly divine intervention. Even when I got the job offer from this agency, I tried to fight to do adult work instead of juvenile because I already have experience with juveniles. I fought tooth and nail to do anything but what I'm doing right now. And yet, what I'm doing right now is the only thing I could ever want to do.

Sunday, July 11, 2004

and furthermore,

it is clear that I need to write shorter entries about more interesting things.

Saturday, July 10, 2004

Are the men just pluckier here?

Unfortunately, right after I finished my weekly Saturday morning brunch indulgence and was on my second cup of coffee, a large package was dropped outside my apartment door around 1 pm today. Alas, it was the writing competition crap that was due last week and never made it to me the three times it was attempted to be sent. It made it now. My roommate and I sat around today in our sweatpants and T-shirts watching TV, lounging, chatting, yawning, stretching. It looked like a beautiful day outside today, but I wouldn't know. After sitting on the couch all day, grading writing competition packets, M and I fell asleep on our respective couches. I woke up around 7 pm. We resumed TV watching, I resumed writing competition grading, and M had the brilliant suggestion that we crack open one of the bottles of red wine. M received a phone call from a friend of hers around 11 to go out to a club in an up-and-coming hip area of town. She tried to drag me out, but I decidedly refused. Deep down inside I wanted to go out, but I think it takes me time to work up the right energy to go out, and since I'd spent all day working on the "I'm going to sit around in my sweatpants until tomorrow morning" energy, it was far too late for me to change my mind.

What I realized, however, is that this bizarre need for me to prep myself mentally for going out is rooted in some deep insecurities. [note: this is getting far more personal than I ever intended for this blog, but I'll share for now. perhaps will delete later.] I was even having a wonderful hair day and a wonderful skin day - these things cannot be artificially induced and rarely can be artificially created. Nevertheless, I had volunteered to drive M to the subway stop because I wanted to stop and buy dishwashing detergent and wouldn't rest until the dishes were washed, and secretly I was happy to have the house to myself so I could engage in some therapeutic housecleaning. At 11 pm on a Saturday night. While we were walking out, two men were walking into the lobby. A not particularly attractive guy dressed in a ratty T-shirt and gym shorts turned and watched us walk by - me in my grey sweatpants and T-shirt with lime green flip flops, and M dressed to go out. He whistled and said, "Where are you ladies headed tonight?" I whipped around, looked him square in the eye, gestured to my clothing, and asked, "Does it look like I'm going anywhere special?" He replied, "Well girl, I'm not going anywhere tonight either." I shook my head and walked out of the building. I giggled when we got outside and said to M, "Did that guy really think it was ok to be leering at two girls with that line and dressed in those clothes?"

After dropping M off at the subway around 11:45, I lime-green-plastic-flip-flopped my way to the 24 hr drugstore to buy, with much delight, dishwasher detergent. On my way out of the store, a young man turned to his friend and said, "i wouldn't mind going home with her" or something along those lines. In the reflection of the glass doors, I could see that they were both looking in my direction.

I think that part of the reason that I stayed home tonight is that when I go out, I am laboring under the implicit assumption that I'm not particularly beautiful and thus, I'm not going to be the one that people approach in bars. Since that has not been the case in the past two weeks, I attribute this to pure luck and assume that there is just no way my streak of luck could continue this evening. Thus, it's better than I just stay at home instead of going out and being disappointed. Furthermore, I'm looking forward to scrubbing the bathroom. But tonight I thought, if I can get people to talk to me while I'm wearing sweatpants, a t-shirt, and flip flops, and buying dishwashing detergent at midnight on a Saturday night, then surely if I were dressed decently and at a bar I could find someone to talk to.

Maybe, then, it's not just luck.

I said I wouldn't blog.

But I lied.

Last night, I reluctantly dragged myself out of the house to join my roommate and other interns in the nightlife hotspot of the city (which is not all that close to where I live). I was so tired from the past two weeks but I've only been out once in this area of town and really wanted to spend more time there.

I only knew one other intern besides my roommate so I met a few new people. They had been drinking for a few hours longer than me, so the party was in full swing when I arrived. We sat around the only table in front of the large, opened windows and watched people walking by on the streets below. It was a beautiful night last night, it was just breezy and warm enough to be comfortable. Several people had not eaten, so the group relocated up the street in front of a pizza place.

The moment I'll remember most from last night is when we were all huddled on the street under the bright neon lights of the pizza place and the bars next door, our pizza placed precariously on a stack of large bread crates located next to a trash can, eating very hot slices of cheese pizza while swarms of people walked by us on their way to their evenings.

We then moved on to a dive bar ($2 Yuengling pints!) that none of us had been to before, but had been recommended to us. I was expecting a dirty biker bar, but there was some great rap and hip-hop booming from the speakers, and the patrons were quite diverse. We went upstairs and discovered the couches but the room was incredibly well-lit, which is not a good characteristic for a bar to possess. It hurt my eyes. I saw the girl that works at my gym and lets me in every morning playing pool. I had pleasant, funny, and insightful conversations with my fellow interns but bid them good night around 1 a.m. because I was just far too exhausted.

Finally, I'm beginning to feel like I belong here. I'm running into people from my gym at the bars, I'm beginning to learn where the good bars and restaurants are, who has the best happy hours, where the cheap beer is, where the rooftop decks are. The greatest thing about the nightlife in this city is that you can always go out and make friends. Almost anyone will happily engage in a conversation with a stranger. Then you start talking, introduce yourselves, conversation rolls on, and then maybe a few hours later you exchange phone numbers. I give out my phone number freely because I'm starting to discover that there is no danger in anyone actually calling. But even if they did, I'd meet up for a drink again with any of the people I've met out at the bars. It energizes me to meet new people and make new connections, and this city seems to be ideal for embracing those opportunities.

I'm really starting to love it here.

Friday, July 09, 2004

Bye now.

Broke another dish of my roommate's, my weekend plans to head home were cancelled, and I'm exhausted. I'm going on a mental vacation this weekend (with frantic writing competition grading included). I won't blog. I won't answer my phone. I'm not checking email. I just need to relax.

Thursday, July 08, 2004


I've been neglecting Slate in the madness of this week. Such a shame, I do love Slate so.

Death Means Never Having to Say I'm Sorry

Dialogue re: Bush and his ties to Saudi Arabia

Terror, terror, everywhere.

Terror Threat for Elections.

I wish I had been documenting every time there was a "terror threat." There was a terror threat every Christmas since and including Xmas '01; every national holiday; every once in a while there are concerns about truckers, crop dusters, whatever. Don't use bridges, they are also terrorist targets. I can't tell if this is a political election-year ploy, or if the government just decided that they'd just go ahead and cry, "Terrorist attack threat!" every so often just so no one can later say, the government didn't do/say/know anything that they should have.

I'm going to rant...

You've been duly notified.

1. I'm working for a prosecutor in the fall and all I've heard about is how much that is going to hurt me when interviewing for public defender positions. I'll concede that I didn't emerge from the womb wanting to do defense work. I wanted to do prosecution. I wanted to do good work, I wanted to do justice. I wanted to give treatment to people who were struggling with addiction; I wanted to give mental health services to people who were struggling with mental illness; I wanted to rehabilitate people who had grown up in unfortunate circumstances; I wanted to be able to choose NOT to prosecute people for ridiculous crimes. I wanted to be the prosecutor that has an open-file discovery policy, a prosecutor who only uses good and honest information. My experience, so far this summer, has demonstrated that prosecutors rarely do this. Whether they don't have the discretion to do so or just choose not to, I don't know. But I don't like it. I'm at my best when I'm working with individuals and advocating for individuals - I hate representing some nebulous, intangible government interest. I did a death penalty clinic, I'm working for a public defender this summer, and then next spring I'm doing more death penalty work. But one semester of prosecution nullifies three semesters of defense work? I've committed to this internship and I'd feel bad backing out at this point. In January and February I honestly wasn't sure where I'd feel most comfortable working. Knowing that I'd have plenty of defender experience, since that's where I was leaning at the time, I explored the possibility of doing prosecution. And I can't help but think that I'm going to be unemployed for years because of that. And it really seems that anyone who did corporate law or real estate law or waitressing their second summer would have a better shot than me at doing defender work. can this be possible?!?!

2. Hot coffee + ice DOES NOT EQUAL iced coffee, ok? It equals lukewarm and watery crud in a cup. That's $2 I can't get back, thankyouverymuch.

3. [DELETED rant about coworker.]

4. Thus far, every important memo that has been sent to us 3 interns in regards to how we're supposed to do something has been a direct response to something that I've done wrong. I'm upset because I don't make a decision without getting approval from the attorney I work with - but then I get these memos from the supervisor. Listen, I'm trying here... my work is my life. This isn't just a job to me, this is my passion, my reason for waking up every morning. It's very personal to me. I'm having a very difficult time with this reactionary feedback. It also makes it look like I've just been making decisions willy-nilly, a renegade law intern, when that's not the case at all. I'm not NEARLY that confident. I'm incredibly distressed about this.

It's clear that I'll be known as "Homeless Woman of the Law" because there is no way that anyone will ever hire me. I look like an idiot, my coworker is going to climb right over me for every position I apply to, and I can't even work in a coffeeshop to pay off my loans because of my stringent iced coffee standards.

Tuesday, July 06, 2004

Like whoa.

I am just now arriving home from my day. I left my house 14 hours ago. What a day, indeed.

I had several friends in town for the weekend. One of my dearest friends from high school and her boyfriend came to visit and stayed at my apartment. Two of my friends from law school came to visit and stayed at a hostel and at a friend's house, respectively. I had to juggle my time, so I got to spend a respectable amount of time with all of them but a good amount of time with none of them. Friday night, I went out on the town with my roommate. Saturday, I stayed in bed until noon (oh, how luxurious, I haven't done that in months) while I recovered and returned about two weeks worth of phone calls. I kept telling my friend from law school that I'd be getting out of bed and heading his way. I told him that at noon. I told him that again at one. At around two, I finally dragged my rear end out of bed and showered. I managed to get into the area by 3, but quickly chatted with another friend first. Then met up with him at 3:30, finally. It was so great to see him! He just kept giving me hugs. I didn't realize what I was missing until it came to visit.

I visited with him until about 6, and then I went to Borders to get myself a new notebook for work and lists (I love lists!) and then read part of a new baseball book while drinking a cafe mocha. Then I went home, made dinner, sat on the couch until my friend from high school arrived with her boyfriend, which wasn't until 11 or so.

Sunday, my female friend from law school, C, came into town and we met up with her. We went to a museum and got caught in a monsoon. There was so much rain that you couldn't see more than three feet in front of you. We got back to the apartment around 230, soaking wet, and deciding to change into dry comfy clothes, drink red wine, and lounge around until our clothes dried and until it was time for dinner. Then the four of us went out for Thai food and after dinner, C departed and S, G, and I went to play pool.

While we were playing pool, I leaned over to S and said, "So when is that ring coming?" She didn't know, was thinking that it would probably happen in the next few months or so, but they were both comfortable knowing that they wanted to spend the rest of their lives together. Then we went to the fireworks, and to a margarita place that didn't last long, and then we went to a club where I met a really sweet guy from N.C. He's adorable and possesses many of the characteristics that I keep on the list of artificially perfect men. It helped that I did truly enjoy his company. He was quite a character, and there were some memorable moments of the evening that, taken out of context, could be particularly frightening. He does have my phone number and wanted to come visit the area again at least once more before the summer was over. I hope he does. He wanted me to go visit him, but I was having none of that. I'm not trekking to NC to hang out with someone I met at bar. That would be bizarre, n'est-ce pas?

On Monday, we slept in. I went to the gym later than usual and then trekked downtown to meet law school friends for lunch before they headed out. It was a nice lunch and I miss them so much. We have a mini-reunion planned for next weekend back in our hometown and I can't wait! I don't miss the library but I sure miss my house, and my room, and the comforts of my grocery store, and my old gym, and my old bars. I've missed you, my babies. It'll be weird though, because I've been away since mid-May, and two days isn't enough to revel in the comforts of home. S and G went to visit some of their old haunts while i was lunching and shopping. I made it home around dinner time and made lists (wheee) and gathered dirty laundry and the like. S and G returned shortly thereafter and S cornered me in the kitchen while I was preparing some scallops and shrimp to snack on. She said, "Remember last night when you asked me when I was getting the ring?" and then showed me her ring finger. Upon said ring finger was a ring. I looked at the ring, I looked at her. I looked at the ring. I checked to make sure it was her left hand. They're engaged! I really can predict the future, I swear. I had a dream last night that Kerry chose Edwards as a running mate (what a sad life I lead, no?) and voila, this morning, it becomes truth. We hung out until my bedtime, and that was the end of the holiday weekend. They left this afternoon but I said my goodbyes at the early hour at which I departed for work.

Then I got to work and the whole place has gone to hell in a handbasket. There's another huge issue starting to erupt and it's not pretty. I was at work until 7:30 tonight, trying to make a dent in the list of clients that need to be seen. I left work feeling a little down, thinking that there's just no way I can change these problems, they're just so much bigger than I am. Sometimes I can't believes that my job entails confronting these problems head-on. These are issues that are the storylines for dramatic movies, for newspaper headlines. But, in the end, if it's just one person and one issue at a time, then I've had a good day. Tomorrow morning, I have to go back and stare at that list of clients that still need to be seen. Sigh.

Tomorrow, I had planned on returning to ESPN Zone in order to watch the Red Sox play the A's. And, secretly, I hoped that the gentleman I met last week would return as well. However, our first softball practice is tomorrow at 6:30-6:45, and there's no way I can make it from one end of town to the other after practice in order to get to watch the game in time. I'm having a difficult time letting go of this plan though, so the best I can hope for is rain. On the plus side, if I don't go to ESPN Zone, then I can't be disappointed that he didn't show up. Right?

Monday, July 05, 2004

The good, the bad, and...

Good: Friends from high school and law school descend upon the city for the weekend.
Bad: Trying to schedule quality time with all of them

Good: Going to the museum
Bad: Getting caught in a torrential downpour such that today, my sneakers are not any drier than they were yesterday

Good: Coming home from typhoon, getting into warm sweatpants, and drinking red wine with friends
Bad: Being verrrrry sleepy afterwards

Good: Thai food for dinner
Bad: Horrible service and being de facto kicked out of post-fireworks margarita place

Good: Going to a better bar.
Bad: Smoky and a cover charge; tired, cranky, wanted to go to bed.

Good: Got hit on by a really great guy, danced with him all night, kissed him, gave him my phone number, kissed him more.
Bad: Have given my phone number to 5 men this week (although this is the first time I've kissed or intended to kiss any of them).

I love this city. It's amazing what a week can do.

Saturday, July 03, 2004

In search of more employment.

I have to start getting my materials together to get myself a job that pays money after I graduate from law school. I decided not to do a clerkship. I don't think I'm particularly interested in the usual fellowship programs because most of them prohibit working in criminal law, but there are a few fellowships (two that I know of) that are explicitly for the practice of capital defense work. I might end up wanting to do prosecution (although at this point I can't fathom it.) I'm trying to figure out where I should be applying. I'll definitely apply to some organizations that are in this area, and I'll apply to organizations in the area that I'll be living/working in come the fall. But what about, say, Seattle or New Mexico? Colorado? Montana? Canada? Ok, not Canada. Not yet. But I have been considering moving to areas in which I have no connections. That's scary. I bet I'd hate it. Maybe.

I'm sure it's not that hard to hate me, and these results were definitely different last night when I did this (perhaps the word "sober" was missing.)

You are an SECL--Sober Emotional Constructive Leader. This makes you a politician. You cut deals, you change minds, you make things happen. You would prefer to be liked than respected, but generally people react to you with both. You are very sensitive to criticism, since your entire business is making people happy.

At times your commitment to the happiness of other people can cut into the happiness of you and your loved ones. This is very demanding on those close to you, who may feel neglected. Slowly, you will learn to set your own agenda--including time to yourself.

You are gregarious, friendly, charming and charismatic. You like animals, sports, and beautiful cars. You wear understated gold jewelry and have secret bad habits, like chewing your fingers and fidgeting.

You are very difficult to dislike.

Good times.

Going to bed. First very fun night. Met Manuel, Luis, Carlos, John, and James. if don't hear from Manuel, will be upset. [Consultant at Accenture. Another one!] Laughed at John b/c mom is supermodel from Holland and Dad is in advertising from France. He's gorgeous. James's dad is a diplomat, formerly of the Army. James grew up with John in Argentina. Most went to high school together. All are now in college in the U.S. [Oh my. They were young, weren't they?] Danced to Latino music all night. Gave three of them my phone number. Time for bed. Is this real?

Thursday, July 01, 2004

Can't shake it off.

I'm still carrying yesterday around on my shoulders. It's like having a rain cloud that only rains on me and follows me around.

For years, I've had dreams that later come true - weeks or months down the road. It's bizarre but because I've always had them, I've never thought much about it. Yesterday, one of the residents here was leaving. And just like a scene in my dream, I turned my chair around to see him walking down the hall towards the office, hands and feet shackled, with a big smile on his face because he was leaving. Just like in the dream I had when I first started here.

Last night, i had a dream about one of the residents that I don't know really well. He's been absolutely despondent and refusing to participate in life at all, as he's
about to be transferred from the juvenile system to the adult system. He just lies in bed, not moving, refusing to speak to anyone, and he's done this for weeks. Well last night, i had a dream that I ran into him in a hallway, and he was with a social worker or a lawyer, and he was smiling, bright and happy. He said that he was going to be heading to [insert specific city in specific state] for a day to just hang out, that they
were going to give him a day off before his transfer. He was happy, and relieved, and felt ready to handle the rest of his burdens. He said he was going to be ok. I came in to work this morning and was notified that he was transferred to the adult system last night and made a suicide attempt.

I hope that my dream comes true for him.

I think that I carry myself in a very friendly, warm, positive, vibrant manner. I try to demonstrate that I'm passionate, empathetic, and capable. Last night I wasn't even trying to throw down game with this guy that I met at ESPN Zone - I was just being 100% me, as though I were speaking to anyone that I knew from law school or work. I'm feeling like I'm down for the count right now. TKO. The news about the capital trial,
my personal rejection, work being less than positive - I'm losing my fight, my fire. I'm tired. I don't want to struggle anymore. I'm taking this all very personally right now. I must not be a good worker or a good advocate. I must not really be as fun, exciting, or smart as I think I am. I must not have gotten along with ESPN-Zone boy as much as I thought. (Although, he was potentially married - there were some suspicious hints towards that - but I'll discuss those later). Anyway, I'm tired and I just need to get away for a while. Escape this little rainy cloud under which I seem to be firmly entrenched.