Thursday, January 31, 2008

Snow day!

The university closed down today because of a snowstorm. This is my first snow day since 1999. Naturally, I went out and got some pictures.

Monday, January 28, 2008

Decisions, decisions

It's getting to the time where I have to decide the state in which I'm going to take the bar exam (and to which I will be chained for several years at least). I've narrowed things down to Idaho or Washington, and I think I know what I'm going to do, but I'm going to write it out here for my own benefit. Also, I'm looking to you, my audience, to holler at me if I'm making a decision which is obviously wrong, a la a contestant on "The Price is Right."

+ Two metropolitan areas in which I'm hireable - Boise and CdA (jobs in the Southeast have been sewn up already by the Elect)
+ Smaller state means less competition
- But also fewer jobs
+ Recommendations from professors carry greater weight here
- Day 2 of the bar exam is my birthday
- No place to stay while studying for the bar
+ Cost of living is lower
+ Greater chance of working with (or against) friends from law school
+ A guy I know from high school lives in Mountain Home

Total Score: +3

+ Seattle metro area alone is bigger than Boise and CdA put together
+ And then there's the Portland suburbs
+ And Spokane…
- a.k.a. "Spokompton"
+ Bigger cities known for quirky lifestyle means greater potential for meeting girls
- Competition from UW, Seattle U, and Gonzaga grads
- Not a lot of UI alum around to pay attention to me…
+ …except in Spokane…
- …which has a higher murder rate than Seattle
+ Might be able to sponge off Seattle-based cousin until I get a job…
- …but he's got a newborn
- Won't know anyone else in the state…
+ …except in Spokane…
- …but I won't recognize them after they're horribly disfigured by meth lab explosions
- Higher cost of living
+ But bar exam is forty bucks cheaper
- My adequate MPRE score won't help me: Washington has its own professional responsibility exam

Final Score: -1

Looks like I'll get to work on an Idaho application, unless my Johnny Resumeseed act pays off with a job elsewhere within the next month.

Remember: "The Price is Right." Yell at me if I'm wrong. I bid $27,500 on my showcase.

Saturday, January 26, 2008

Sound off like you got a pair

I have a couple of friends who used to teach English in Japan. If you guys are reading this... did you happen to come across this textbook?

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Judicial quote of the month

From FTC v. QT, Inc.:

Defendants might as well have said: "Beneficient creatures from the 17th Dimension use this bracelet as a beacon to locate people who need pain relief, and whisk them off to their homeworld every night to provide help in ways unknown to our science."

Tuesday, January 22, 2008

I agree, the "open letter" is a tired gag

To the people at Steak'Ums and your associated ad agency:

Let me recite the words to the jingle you use in your advertisements.

You can stick 'em in the north, you can stick 'em in the south
But the best part of all is when you stick 'em in your mouth

I understand that you intended this jingle to inspire me to eat Steak'Ums. And I suppose that your jingle could be interpreted that way.

But, stripped of its context, don't you think your jingle is a little... odd? Did no one among you hear the jingle for the first time and snicker? Did no one among you run the proposed jingle past your children? Was there no one who said, "Guys, guys, wait a minute. This ad sounds like we're selling dicks?"

Perhaps I should applaud you for contributing to civilized discourse by avoiding such profane interpretations of your advertisements. But seriously, guys, get your minds in the gutter for once.

Thursday, January 17, 2008

It's all so clear to me now

Now that I've watched this video, I'm pretty sure I have seen the light. Only Tom Cruise can help me when I am hurt. Tom Cruise cannot be criticized in public because his mind powers overwhelm the lesser men. All my illnesses are in my mind, and Tom Cruise holds the key to unlock its secrets. In fact, you could go so far as to say that the entire world is but a figment of Tom Cruise's imagination, and we exist solely at his whim.

The rest of the epic story of Mr. Cruise is available (for now) here. And remember, Tom Cruise will show his enemies no mercy.

Sunday, January 13, 2008

Helicopter 1 reporting heavy traffic

I've recently acquired SimCity 4, and so I'm going to be spending less time than usual blogging and more time than usual building cities. I seem to run out of steam once I hit around 25,000 people: that's when I hit the limits of my transportation infrastructure and I have to tear down pretty much the whole town to put in freeways and/or trains. Feh.

But at least I can take solace that there's a mayor worse than me: Frank Melton, of Jackson, Mississippi.

Among our mayor’s greatest hits:

• He once stopped a school bus on a busy interstate because he “needed a hug” from the kids inside.

• He’s been known to strap weapons to his chest and leg that he has no authority to carry or conceal, then wear them in public.

• He regularly suits up and leads SWAT-style “raids” on homes, businesses, and even roadblocks in busy traffic—without cause or a warrant.

• He has tried to close down the city’s strip clubs for moral reasons, despite no authority to do so.

• He once bulldozed an elderly woman’s house, promising to build her a better one. He then forgot to build it.

• He recruited a team of kids to torch a row of dilapidated shotgun houses, without clearance or first turning off the utilities.

• He keeps a house full of young men, including minors and/or felons, without having the proper foster-parent credentials.

• He once hid two of those young men wanted for armed robbery from the district attorney and county sheriff, driving away with one of them in his car after deputies stopped them and tried to serve a warrant on the young man (who later assisted with the duplex demolition).

Wednesday, January 9, 2008

My-Bis face prosecution

Return with me to the halcyon days of November and the Megan Meier affair. In summary, Meier and Tina Drew feud, Tina's mom Lori pretends to be a cute guy on Myspace and leads Megan on, only to taunt her viciously, Megan kills self, Meier family goes nut.

A Los Angeles grand jury is now looking into the Drews. What for? Why, defrauding Myspace, of course. And why Los Angeles, when the Drews and the Meiers live in Missouri? Why, because Myspace is headquartered in California, of course.

In summary, the prosecution is proceeding on the theory that lying on your Myspace is a form of criminal fraud. Will our jails soon be filled with people who describe themselves as "average" when they're really "More to love!"? Stay tuned.

Tuesday, January 8, 2008

I am become Death, destroyer of supermarkets

When I was a kid, our family always did our grocery shopping at the Eagle supermarket, usually on Sundays after church. A year or so after I moved to Iowa City to start college, the chain went bankrupt.

When in Iowa City, I usually shopped for groceries at Cub Foods, which was close to where I lived and was also dirt-cheap. On my most recent drive through town, I've discovered that it, too, has closed.

What does this mean? It means that if you work for WinCo in Moscow, you should start updating your resume.

Saturday, January 5, 2008

An unceasing parade of frustrations

Imagine, if you will, that you're holding a conversation with an eminent 19th century person, and the eminent 19th century person is asking you questions about the future.

So, how does man travel in the year twenty-aught-eight?
Well, first, you've got to stop using "man" generically like that or people will think you're sexist. But regarding your question, most local transit occurs via horseless carriages.
Fascinating. And what of long-distance travel?
We have mastered the secret of heavier-than-air flight. Shining metal aircraft criss-cross our skies, carrying people to and fro at speeds of hundreds of miles per hour. Tickets are priced so that even the lower classes can afford to travel from coast to coast in a matter of hours.
Capital! It must be a delightful experience!
Actually, we're so technologically advanced in the 21st century that we have managed to take all the excitement and wonder that accompanies flight and suck it right down the tubes. Flying is totally miserable and everybody hates it.

No points for guessing where I've been stuck for the last eight hours.

Wednesday, January 2, 2008

Roundup of Thoughts

-I won't be participating in the Iowa Caucus. I'm technically an Iowa resident at the moment, but I won't be when the election rolls around, so it wouldn't feel right.
-From a radio ad: "The caucuses are only days away, and now, new attacks on Barack Obama's health plan." I think you're missing a verb in the last clause of that sentence.
-Ron Paul says he's a superpatriot, but he uses an announcer in one of his radio ads who has a Canadian accent. I haven't heard much else from Republicans: Dubuque is so strongly Democratic that they don't even bother.
-Joe Biden, you seem proud of having talked to Musharraf before Bush did. If you become President, how would you feel about senators running behind your back to conduct diplomacy? (At least Biden makes me feel better about my law school grades - he was last in his class.)
-I'm ready to leave. As much fun as it is to play Nintendo DuckTales, you can only play it so many times in a row.
-You think Judge Maria Lopez enjoys the occasional cigarette?
-I think every social networking site on the web should have a filter that removes the words "I'm quiet at first but open up once you get to know me."
-Last of the Dubuque photos, and a few of Iowa City, here.
-Vault really does taste just like Surge.