While pH is at camp this next week, my plan is to read/write/research/hang out at the law school rather than drive all the way home and then back again. (I’m pretty sure that “killing time at the law school while your child is at camp” is an alumni privilege along with library access.) Also, given the bar exam season, I like the idea of being in a place (air-conditioned, with access to food, coffee, diet sodas, and clean restrooms) with people who are more stressed than I am. It’s hard to find people who are more stressed than I am outside a locked ward. I want to bring them baked goods, give them hugs, and explain about benzodiazapenes. They never mentioned those in the work-life balance seminars, but they ought to.


An older attorney congratulated me after I passed the bar and said something like “and now you’ll face real challenges!” as if that were a prize–and I wanted to kill him because I couldn’t imagine anything worse than the bar exam.

Spoilers: he was right. It’s not the same stress, and there are different things on the line, but it’s more intense. You can handle more of it as you get more acclimated (exactly like the slow heat-to-boil used to cook live lawyers animals) so that when you look back at the bar you realize it was a miserable experience but by no means the most difficult thing you’ve ever done.

(By you, of course I mean me. I remember when pH was induced and I was on magnesium sulfate and oxygen and in miserable labor, and I turned to kH and said, “I would rather take a hundred bar exams than do this again” and he said, “There aren’t that many states,” and I wanted to kill him but the next contraction saved him.)

The good part is the wins in court will feel better than passing the bar exam. And you will earn money. (Actually passing the bar turns out to be a moment of euphoria followed by a protracted feeling of let down, like after-gifts Christmas Day  x1000.)


If it were not an ethics violation, I would lie to the graduates studying for the bar. I’d tell them the future is bright and they will all find jobs, because why should they think otherwise now? Give them that until they walk out of the MBE. Well, no. I couldn’t do it–the lie, I mean. I’m a terrible liar, and besides, it’s not fair.

Instead, I’d tell them it will be okay. If they pass it will be okay and if they fail it will be okay, too. If they work as lawyers or they don’t, it will work out eventually, and time will pass and life and lovers and jobs and clients and judges will drop bombs on them and they will still be okay. It works out eventually. In the end, the important things are not the multiple choice questions or the motion for summary judgment.

(Although this is where I point out I never lost a MSJ.)

It will all be okay. I promise.


The upshot is if you are in the vicinity and want to gawk and/or get coffee, drop me a line. qh [at] thequeenofhats [dot] com. (I will probably not be there every day this week, plans depending.) I’ll the one in a hat with the book of Rammstein essays.