August 2003 Archives

Welcome to Berkeley


This week's henna obscenity is brought to you by the Boalt Hall Office of Career Services, who told me to take off my resume. Now that I needn't fear potential employers checking out my online wares, I can finally start pushing all those envelopes that have been cluttering up my desk. Next week, the oral sex.

I've made several attempts at following that last paragraph with something amusing, or at least interesting, and failed each time. So rather than fake it I think I'll just roll over and go to sleep. 'Night, sweetie.

Next Stop the Federal Judiciary

My first legal publishing has happened here, at the home of UCLA's Journal of Law and Technology. Check it out if you're interested in the musings of an underinformed first-year law student. I wrote the article before taking Con Law, which is unfortunate since looking back over it now I see that I could do a lot more with the right to privacy and Equal Protection stuff. But them's the breaks.

In the Spring of my freshman year I took a Nuclear Engineering survey course taught by a cast of quirky professors. We heard about a lot of things without actually learning them, on account of the time. I got to hold a uranium pellet.

Due to the disjointed nature of the course the midterm and assignments were under the control of a mysterious and generally unpredictable graduate student. The questions on the weekly problem sets bore little or no relation to the reading, and even less to the lectures. Accordingly when the midterm came around I was prepared for some thorough flabbergasting. The exams were distributed face-down, and during the jittery pre-test undertakings I noticed that the last page was almost completely blank, with just a few words at the top. When the signal was given I flipped the thing over and, for some reason, looked at the last page first. It looked like this:

"Extra credit: Why?"

The background to this story is that I had recently begun my love affair with urban legends, mainly through the aid of The Urban Legends Reference Pages, a site that was introduced to me by my friend Jon who ICQ'd me a link about hidden messages in Disney films. During a long, lonely freshman year weekend I had read every single page in the ULRP, a feat which has rendered me very unpopular at parties and in e-mail loops. Accordingly when I saw the one-word question I immediately thought of this delightful tale of the professor who gives "Why?" as a final exam question and awards the highest grade to the student who writes "Because."

Convinced that the grad student had struck again, and elated that I was living my very own urban legend, I went through the exam, giddy with delight, waiting until I got to the extra credit question so I could write "Because" and be all clever. Of course, I waited until I finished the exam proper before I wrote the cheeky extra credit response, and I even erased and re-wrote it a few times to make sure it looked as cool and confident as possible. Yes, I know that's self contradictory.

The exam ended, I handed it in, and headed home, very pleased with my bad self. When I was about two thirds of the way home I literally stopped in my tracks, overcome with a wave of pure shame. I realized that, while the test had been almost entirely multiple choice, the last two questions were short answer. In fact, the very last question was extremely short answer. It was something like:

"Is the fusion that happens in the JET and Tokamak reactors the same reaction that happens in the sun?"

The answer was No, and I had said so. Only a half hour later did I realize that the extra credit question, "Why?", referred to the fusion question, and provided an opportunity to explain the Yes or the No, and it wasn't an invitation to explore the deeper philosophical meanings of the human experience after all.

I headed back to the dorm and posted my sad tale on the Urban Legends Message Board. A few weeks later I got my test back, complete with a "Good one +0" scrawled on the back page by the grad student.

Life is boringer than fiction.





I drew a comic strip last night. Really, I did. It's very pretty, and has words and red and green and a guy with curly hair, and some ham-fisted use of perspective. I'd be happy to show it to you if only I could get it out of my computer and onto the greater Internet. I've tried several roads to upload city, including IE, FTP Explorer, Smart FTP, and even Telnet, but all roads are currently blocked with big orange signs that say something about the server failing to respond. CalTrans has been alerted.

Speaking of things not working, our freezer has proven invaluable in the area of turning ice cream into flavoured milk. The dryers downstairs, for their part, will gladly take two dollars in quarters from you and produce a shapeless pile of damp clothing two hours later. And the only thing keeping me from using my Palm Pilot for lecture notes is its helpful habit of self-destructing immediately after alerting me to the fact that I should replace the batteries "soon." The machines, they are not our friends.

Finally, give this a click if you'd like some relief from that nagging feeling that life is passing you by.

A Change of Venue


Happy Anniversary, I Fought the Law! You compleat me.

I toyed with the idea of replacing the non-Kasarov characters with bizarro analogues, but in the end decided that an incongruous mass transfer would be less jarring for my delicate readers. You're welcome.

As I was preparing to switch schools I also considered getting the other 2L transfers together and forming the Backdoor Club, an exercise which has proven to be unnecessary. All the transfers have been gravitating toward each other over the past two days and within a week or two I fear that integration into the greater 2L community will be a lost cause. But I take comfort in the fact that, had I not switched schools, I'd be clique-ing up with my former section mates anyway, so clique-ing up with my fellow transfers is just as well. We're a diverse bunch, having come from schools as far away as the South of California and as near as Hastings. We're all of us skilled at Bridge and few of our colleagues can approach us at darts and other ungentlemanly pastimes. We swarm bravely around the precious, precious outlets (two to six per room) and bemoan the lack of classroom Internet access. I took a bunch of them to the I-House on Monday and only one of them had her order lost. All in all, this transfer thing is looking pretty sweet.

Comic Strippers 18, 19 & Epilogue


And seven curses with it!

There are three there, you know, just so we're clear.

Last night I drove down to Santa Cruz for what may be the last time for quite a while for the world premiere of Trannies, a movie which has nothing whatsoever to do with gender identity disorder. The movie was great. Solid story, good characters, and very well executed, both dramatically and technically. My man JMV was the B camera operator and chief lighting (technician? engineer? guy?), and if Trannies is any indication his future is so bright he's gotta wear shades. The hardcore industrial kind that old people wear. Once the DVD is available I plan to do everything in my power to build a maniacal cult following before the distribution deal.

Yesterday was also Boalt orientation day. As the Guy who Went to Berkeley Undergrad I ended up being the person most knowledgeable regarding a variety of subjects, such as where things are, how to use Bearfacts, and how to choose an e-mail password. Uclink has a number of fun little rules when it comes to your password, and choosing a sequence of symbols that was 6-8 characters long, had no more than three letters or numbers in a row, and contained at least four unique characters proved to be a bit of a challenge for a few of the legal geniuses in the lab. My advice to the guy in front of me to "pick a word and replace all the e's with 3's" seemed much appreciated.

I've also had the opportunity to dork it up with a few transfers who have physicsy backgrounds: one materials science and engineering major from MIT and one girl from my BSC lab senior year. You have to have a compelling academic reason to transfer to Berkeley, so I'm guessing that I'll end up meeting quite a few members of the Backdoor Club who played the "I have a science background and want to study law and technology" card as successfully as I did.

In addition to my former lab mate (who had no memory of me), I also ran into a former ASUC political ally in the facebook line, and two people from my freshman year dorm were inexplicably at the Trannies premiere. So my return to the Bay has been met with haunting faces from my past, just not the faces I might have expected, and not the channels of my past that I might have, well, expected.

All right. Fuck this noise.

Comic Stripper 17: Deus Ex Vagina


And now, the violence.

Today I discovered a distinct advantage of living on an island. When you get lost, it's simply not possible to stray that far from where you're supposed to be. And since I, as my dad would say, could get lost in a phone booth, I'm digging this Alameda lifestyle.

Cable TV is also pretty cool. I think I'm currently watching the last episode of Coach.

Comic Strippers 15 & 16: I'm a Lazy Man


In my mad dash to put this nightmare behind me I've posted two new strips, this one and this other one. The former is funnier and more relevant to the underlying themes of the story, so it's kind of a shame it didn't get any face time on the front page. Poor planning on my part.

Anyway, I should be able to wrap this thing up in four more strips, which will take us into the weekend. Then on Tuesday IFTL celebrates its one-year anniversary, motherfuckers!!!

Also, I'm in Alameda now, well, not right now, but now in an official sense. While I was unpacking a small siamese cat came and rubbed its face all over the new apartment, which I took as a good omen.

Comic Stripper 14: The Trinity


Fourtfuckingeen, y'all.

I'm very proud of this week's offering. Not only have we brought the girl scouts back, but this week also marks the first appearance of a clown in IFTL. If you thought Mars' approach on August 27th was going to be historic, well, you were right.

Comic Stripper 13: Tiko Tiko


I got a lot of shit done today. Not least among them being Lucky 13. I also went to the post office. And bought some boxes. Not at the post office, though.

I realized that I should probably start getting emotional about leaving Los Angeles, so I'll work on that. Perhaps next weekend I'll drunk myself all up and post something to that effect, but for now there are enough logistical difficulties involved in the process of actually being able to leave to keep me safely distracted. For example, UCLA still insists that I owe them eight thousand dollars, and nobody's answering the phone. That troubles me. Just a leetle beet.

Other Blogs

Law-Type Blogs

Other Webcomics

Log Archives

eXTReMe Tracker

About this Archive

This page is an archive of entries from August 2003 listed from newest to oldest.

July 2003 is the previous archive.

September 2003 is the next archive.

Find recent content on the main index or look in the archives to find all content.

Powered by Movable Type 5.04