Jeremy's Weblog

I recently graduated from Harvard Law School. This is my weblog. It tries to be funny. E-mail me if you like it. For an index of what's lurking in the archives, sorted by category, click here.

Saturday, October 29, 2005

There's a piece in this past week's New Yorker by Jeffrey Goldberg about Brent Scrowcroft, the first President Bush's National Security Adviser, that's probably the best piece about the Iraq War that I've read. Period. Worth buying a copy of the magazine just for that. And you'd get the article on Stephen Breyer (online here) that's also worth a read. The Scrowcroft article is magnificent, and has come up in conversation three times since I read it, and it's only been four days. There's a Q&A with Goldberg online about the article. I haven't read it yet but it looks like it's worth a read too. I'll read it tomorrow, I expect.
Paul Collins, who has a piece in this week's New York Times magazine about his son, is a terrific writer. His book about his son's autism, Not Even Wrong, traces the history of autism, intercut with poignant scenes from his experiences with his son, in such a delicate, engrossing, wonderfully written way that I was almost stunned that the book could be as good as it was. His other books, Banvard's Folly, about a dozen or so people in history who almost became famous -- the guy who almost invented grape jelly, for example, if I recall, and Sixpence House, about his search for old books in a town in England, are also wonderful, rewarding, exceptional books. His piece in this week's paper is terrific. This is why I haven't written anything about his new book, "The Trouble With Tom: The Strange Afterlife and Times of Thomas Paine." I bought the book on Amazon as soon as it came out. There are very few writers whose books I will spend money on anyway, and even fewer I will spend money on without seeing the book in a store, flipping some pages, making sure it's something I really want to have, that I'm really interested in. But I didn't really think twice about this one. And I took it with me to Toronto, one of three books I brought with me, and, for some reason, it's like I'm allergic to it. I'm fifty pages in. It hasn't grabbed me yet. I know it will. I trust it will. I will pick it back up. Soon. But I haven't yet. Read his piece. Read his book Not Even Wrong. I'll report back when I finish this one.

Just to catch up on a few more books... I just finished reading two books by Anne Lamott, who wrote the terrific book about writing, Bird by Bird. These two are about her discovery of faith and spirituality, but that's mostly just the packaging for what are really memoirs about events in her life. Traveling Mercies, from a decade ago, and Plan B, which just came out earlier this year. I thought Bird by Bird was great. These two are good, Plan B moreso than Traveling Mercies, but I think that's my own biases influencing my opinion.

I think I've written about this before, but I have a real bias with most of the stuff I read or watch. I like to feel like I'm getting to know the writer, through the work, and I need to like the writer I'm getting to know. Anne Lamott comes through as a person to a great extent in all of her books. It's one of her biggest strengths. The person in Traveling Mercies is the Anne Lamott when she was young, and addicted to drink and drugs, and suffering through life, and I'm fairly certain that if I met the Anne Lamott of twenty years ago, I'd probably be frightened -- her world was darker than any worlds I've lived in -- and wouldn't want to live in her world. The Anne Lamott since she got sober seems like a person I'd like better. And so I like when she's writing about that person more than about the other person. I guess they go hand in hand and I ought not be so judgmental about it. But, anyway, that's my take on the books. She's a wonderful writer and her books are wonderfully written and engaging and good to read.

I also read Martin Kihn's "House of Lies: How Management Consultants Steal Your Watch And Then Tell You The Time." The author is a former consultant, and a former comedy writer. The book is a whole bunch of management consulting shtick, in the process describing that world pretty comprehensively and giving the reader a sense of the lifestyle. It's not terribly dissimilar from the law firm world, in a broad sense, if you forget about the 4-days-a-week on the road. I liked the book, but he gets stuck in shtick more than he should, and it misses the chance to make some more serious points about the industry and the lifestyle and the waste of talented people who go down that path... I don't know, I may just be holding it to the same unfair standard I find myself frustratingly holding my Anonymous Lawyer stuff to, but it's a fine book, it's an entertaining read, you should read it if you've ever thought about being a consultant, or if you want to remember why you quit.

Friday, October 28, 2005

I saw the movie "Prime" this evening, the one with Meryl Streep and Uma Thurman, where Streep plays a therapist and Uma Thurman is her patient, and dating her son. That's all given away in the television commercials, so I'm not really spoiling it for anyone. If you've seen the commercials, you know what the movie's about, and there won't be any surprises. The movie's awfully contrived. Characters are always finding themselves in the same place as other characters, just to move the plot along. People say irrational things like, "No, I refuse to meet her," just to keep the ball hidden a little longer. You can see what's coming a mile away. That said, I really enjoyed it. Despite the predictable arc, it's well-crafted. It's not sloppy at all. There are more laughs than I expected. It's a nicely done script. It's well-acted. It's a pretty film. It's not groundbreaking, but it's entertaining. So I give it a thumbs-up. Also, the guy behind me, despite talking throughout the movie, was actually a positive addition to the moviegoing experience. Even though he couldn't be quiet, he kind of made the movie more fun.
A friend pointed me to a website that parodies Broadway musicals, called "Broadway Abridged." It's very funny. Probably only if you've seen the shows it's being snarky about. But funny if you have. My link is to their version of "In My Life," the musical I saw last week that got terrible reviews.

Thursday, October 27, 2005

Tomorrow's news today

October 28 -- Washington

President Bush this morning brought forth his new nominee to serve on the Supreme Court. In a prepared statement, he said:

"Today I nominate an outstanding individual to serve on the Supreme Court of the United States. Over her lifetime, she has built a stellar record of accomplishment. She's been a model of service to our country and to our citizens. I've known her for almost 30 years. I know her character; she's a woman of principle and deep conviction. She shares my philosophy that judges should strictly interpret the laws and the Constitution of the United States, and not legislate from the bench.

"First, I've worked with this woman. She's a woman of principle and character. She's highly intelligent. She has been a pioneer. She's an enormously accomplished person who's incredibly bright.

"Secondly, she knows the kind of judge I'm looking for -- she was a part of the process that selected John Roberts.

"Thirdly, I know her well enough to be able to say that she's not going to change, that 20 years from now she'll be the same person with the same philosophy that she is today. She'll have more experience, she'll have been a judge, but, nevertheless, her philosophy won't change. And that's important to me. It was important to me when I picked Chief Justice Roberts; it's important for me in picking this woman.

"Finally, I got some interesting suggestions. I actually listen to the senators when they bring forth ideas. And they brought forth some really interesting ideas during the course of our conversations, some told me directly, many brought to me by people on my staff. And one of the most interesting ideas I heard was, why don't you pick somebody who hasn't been a judge? Why don't you reach outside the -- I think one senator said, the 'judicial monastery.' I thought it was an interesting idea. And I thought long and hard about it. I obviously looked at whether or not other Presidents had done -- made that decision; they had. And so, recognizing that this woman will bring not only expertise, but a fresh approach, I nominated her. And she'll be a really good judge.

"As only the second First Lady in history to hold a post-graduate degree, this nominee has broken barriers. She has been a credit to her country. As a former librarian, we have proof that she not only knows how to read, but she enjoys it, important characteristics in a Supreme Court justice.

"I am honored to nominate Laura Bush to the Supreme Court.

"And in response to my critics, let me assure you. I picked the best person I could find. And when it's all said and done, the American people are going to know what I know. This woman deserves to be on the bench, and she'll bring credit to the bench and to the law.

"People know we're close. But you got to understand, because of our closeness, I know the character of the person. It's one thing to say a person can read the law, and that's important -- and she can, since we know she was a librarian, please keep that in mind. But what also matters are the intangibles. To me, a person's strength of character counts a lot. And as a result of my relationship with Laura, I know her strength of character. And after spending a lot of time thinking about this nomination, there's no doubt in my mind that Laura Bush is the right choice.

"Thank you, and I look forward to a speedy confirmation for our new Supreme Court justice, Laura Bush."
Exciting news this morning: Harriet Miers withdraws her nomination. I guess the studying wasn't going so well.

Wednesday, October 26, 2005

I just saw a commercial for Nicolas Cage's new movie, "The Weatherman," calling it "the first must-see film of the year." Uh, it's practically NOVEMBER. If this is the "first" must-see film of the year, and we're 10 months in, is there really any expectation that there'll be another one? Did this reviewer just forget what month it is? Did he think the film wasn't coming out until January? "First must-see film of the year" is a fine thing to say in January, February, maybe March. But on October 26th???

I stayed up to watch last night's 14-inning Astros-White Sox game, which ended at about 2:20 in the morning. The days I can use watching baseball games as an excuse not to be doing anything productive are rapidly ticking down.

The 6-hour baseball game capped an extraordinarily unproductive day for me... I spent a couple of hours in the morning taking advantage, for the first time, of my new health insurance. There's a wooden dumpster in front of my building where we throw our trash away, and it has a heavy wooden cover. On Monday afternoon I was balancing a couple bags of trash and my laundry, and wasn't being careful enough, and the wooden dumpster cover, wet from the rain, slipped from my hand and slammed down and caught the little finger on my left hand before I could pull it away. So I went to the doctor yesterday because it was kind of swollen and hard to bend, and it turns out there's a small fracture in it. Not a big deal at all, he just gave me a little splint to wear on the finger for the next two weeks or so, so it heals okay. He said if I hadn't come to him it probably would have healed fine anyway as long as I didn't slam it into anything again, but this way it's protected (and probably he gets more insurance payment). I'm realizing there's very little I do that requires the little finger on my left hand, actually. I type with about two fingers, so it doesn't even get in the way there. But, honestly, this dumpster story is pretty ridiculous. I want a better story to tell people, but I can't come up with one. Here's where I need your help. E-mail me cooler explanations for how I could have fractured my finger, so I actually have a good story to tell people that doesn't just sound stupid. Thanks.

Tuesday, October 25, 2005

My fantasy football team won this week!

Monday, October 24, 2005

Flight back to New York was good. But one observation: I noticed as we were taxiing before takeoff that Air Canada seems to have a discount airline called Jazz. The name is plastered in big letters on the side of its planes. I think Jazz is actually a pretty terrible name for an airline. Jazz is everything I want my airline experience not to be. Jazz is improvised, loose, unpredictable, driven by virtuoso performances... great for music, bad for air travel. I want my flight to be more like a boy band song: predictable, perhaps generated by a computer algorithm, inoffensive, safe for children, and three-and-a-half minutes long. Not jazz. Definitely not jazz.

Sunday, October 23, 2005

Poor Brad Lidge. But that was an amazing last few innings of the world series game.

Still in Toronto, heading back to NY on an early afternoon flight tomorrow. Today we had some more peameal bacon as part of Eggs Benedict at brunch, watched "Hitch" on video to avoid the rain (not terrible... I liked it), and then had an awesome dinner. Toronto shares with London the virtue of having neat flavors of potato chips (roast chicken, dill pickle) in stores. I checked out a sports store hoping to find a really cheap Blue Jays shirt, but no such luck. Had a really fun weekend. I'll write a post tomorrow about the book I started on the plane coming and finished the other day, and the one I'll hopefully finish tomorrow on the flight.
On a cold, wet, and windy day in Toronto...

1. Yesterday morning we went to St. Lawrence Market and had peameal bacon sandwiches for brunch. St. Lawrence Market was cool. It's a collection of specialty food stalls and greengrocers all under one roof, basically. I looked for something unique to Toronto to bring back for my mom as a souvenir, but I came up empty. A bunch of vendors seemed to be pushing the maple syrup as a uniquely Torontonian (?) foodstuff, but we've got that. New York, Vermont, all over the place. So that wasn't really that exciting. And I didn't think the smoked elk would (a) make it past customs, or (b) ever get eaten. Peameal bacon is basically what we call Canadian Bacon, but with a cornmeal-like crust around the edge and cut thicker than the Canadian Bacon we usually see here. It was really good. Like a ham sandwich, but really tasty. I liked. Then we went across the street and walked around the farmer's market, and then we went to Rogers Video to rent a movie, since it was really quite dismal outside. Rogers, whoever he is, seems to own Toronto. He's the cable guy, the guy whose name is on the former Skydome, he has a TV station, he has the video stores... [warning: terribly bad attempt to be funny coming up] so Toronto, in effect, truly is Mr. Rogers' neighborhood.

2. Last night we went to see a reading by author John Irving at the Harbourfront Centre (note both words have special non-American spellings!) as part of IFOA, the International Festival of Authors. It was a big deal thing -- a big theater (uh, theatre), maybe 500 people there. I haven't read any John Irving, but he new one (Until I Find You) keeps coming up on my Amazon wish list, and his old ones, A Prayer For Owen Meany, The World According To Garp, The Cider House Rules (didn't read but saw the movie, which I really liked) are really famous. It started out with a reading from a book he hasn't finished yet, called Last Night In Twisted River. I'm never going to listen to books on tape. I just don't process information as well that way. It took me about ten minutes before I could really focus enough to follow what was going on -- it didn't grab me, read out loud. I like books on paper. I like reading. Listening is less cool to me. Anyway, it was fine and he had a nice reading voice, but the more interesting part was the interview that followed. He was interviewed by an infuriating Canadian broadcaster who kept using the word "extraordinary" to describe everything, and who didn't actually listen to any of his answers, it seemed. She had a sheet of questions, and kept interrupting him when he said something interesting just so she could move along her list. I was hoping someone in the audience would run up on stage and strangle her, because she was very frustrating. But John Irving was terrific. He had all sorts of interesting things to say about this book I haven't read, but even more to say about his writing process and writing in general and it was very very interesting and he was very articulate about all of it. He starts with the last line of his books and works backwards, and it often takes him up to seven years to complete a novel. He's driven to write dark and appalling things, and doesn't really get off on writing happy. He doesn't use a computer, and can write anywhere. His offices at home don't have doors on them. He talked about the differences between working on a screenplay for one of his books versus writing his novels, and about the alone-ness of novel-writing, and the way that, for him, the film stuff is fun but not necessary -- he does it to the extent he enjoys it, but his "day job" is the novels, and even if that's less fun, he has to do it, and that's what he's driven to produce. All very interesting stuff. I've not seen enough talks by authors, I don't think.

Saturday, October 22, 2005

Notes on Toronto:

1. Along a main thoroughfare, the sound of ambulances and police cars rang through the air at one point while my friend and I were walking to lunch. A storefront right along the busy, noisy street, "The Toronto Pain and Headache Clinic." Perhaps not quite the right location.

2. We took a ferry out to Ward's Island, where Babe Ruth hit his first professional home run. It's a couple of miles off the mainland, in Lake Ontario. While we were waiting for the ferry, we had about a half hour to kill and milled around in the lobby of the Sheraton hotel right on the waterfront. I noticed their calendar of events and thought it would be fun to see what was going on at the National Convention of Urologists. I thought maybe there'd be some fun giveaways, like stress balls... shaped like... stress balls? Anyway, I tried to look like I wasn't crashing their convention, but the exhibitors were basically done for the day and packing up, and no such luck. All I got were a couple of brochures for procedures I hope no one I know ever need, and a Hershey's Kiss.

3. The ferry ride was nice, even though it's a little chilly this weekend, and then we walked down the boardwalk on the island, past some charming cottages, and onto a set of swings near a farm filled with geese. Then we made our way back to the dock, and it turned out they were filming a newscast on the island, for a channel called Global. Susan, Jim, the weather guy, and the sports guy, were standing on the shore, the lake and the city skyline behind them, and they went through their script a few times until they got it right. They did a bunch of takes where they fake-laughed at the same joke about how Susan got to pilot the ferry. Never saw a local newscast taped before, so it was kind of neat. Big crew. Makeup people, guys holding screens to deflect light, etc.

Friday, October 21, 2005

I'm spending the weekend visiting some friends in Toronto. Toronto's nice. It could pass for a cleaner version of New York, which it does in lots of movies and TV shows. I ate in a restaurant here last night that also serves horse, although I didn't eat horse.

On Wednesday night, I saw the new Broadway musical, "In My Life," which is getting pretty awful reviews. I thought Dracula, which came out about a year ago, was a lot worse. Not to say I thought this was good, but I didn't hate it as much as I think I was supposed to. The reviews are pretty awful though.

Wednesday, October 19, 2005

Questions and Answers about Finding the Perfect Halloween Costume

Q. I'm hoping to go as John Roberts, but I'm not sure how to do that. Any thoughts?

A. Just wear a normal business suit. When someone asks, "Trick or Treat?" simply respond, "I'm sorry, I can't answer that. The issue may come before the Court one day." Playing John Roberts is also fun at the supermarket ("Paper or Plastic?"), gas station ("Cash or Credit?"), and airline check-in counter ("Window or Aisle?").

Q. I'm hoping to go as Harriet Miers, but I'm really not sure how to do that. Any thoughts?

A. Buy an inflatable George Bush doll, and tape it to yourself. That should work. Or you can just re-use the blue dress you wore as Monica Lewinsky five years ago.

Q. The theme of my Halloween party is Mardi Gras. How can I put a damper on the festivities in my own uniquely personal way?

A. Get a wheelchair, wrap yourself in a white bedsheet, and you can show up as that guy they kept showing outside the Superdome on all the news shows.

Q. How about something slightly less offensive than that?

A. Oh. Sorry. Put a paper bag over your head and go as Michael Brown.

Q. Any other ideas?

A. Well, if you're looking for costume ideas for two, Tom Cruise and Katie Holmes are sure to be a popular one.

Q. How about costume ideas for three?

A. Tom Cruise, Katie Holmes, and the publicist that brought them together. A modern day love story.

Q. Is that really funny enough to end on? I don't think it is.

A. I don't think so either, but that's all I've got.

Q. Really? That's kind of weak.

A. I know, but I've been distracted by the baseball playoffs. And the bird flu.

Q. Oh! The bird flu! I want to dress up for Halloween as the Bird Flu!

A. That's easy! Put on a beak, start coughing, maybe carry around some fake phlegm and throw it at people -- perfect! Best costume idea of the year.

Q. Well, next to the "Saddam on Trial" costume, of course.

A. Of course.

Q. Of course.
My fantasy football team is 0-5-1 so far. Deuce McAllister was my star. He's out for the rest of the year. Cadillac Williams is my backup. He's been injured. Can't really blame it on the injuries, though. More than the injuries, I think it's my complete lack of knowledge about these players, and the failure to recognize that drafting a bunch of New Orleans Saints -- not by design, but it just happened to come out that way -- when they're really quite an awful team -- may not have been the best idea. It seems that football fantasy points depend a lot more on team performance than baseball ones do -- that is, you can have some awesome baseball stats on some terrible teams, but if your football team sucks, it seems that probably your quarterback isn't going to have the best stats in the league. I may be wrong about this, it's just a theory based on no knowledge at all.

Tuesday, October 18, 2005

Neat article about Mayor Bloomberg and how he operates City Hall. Nice in-depth piece.

And Newsday quotes Senator Chuck Schumer's reaction to his meeting with Harriet Miers:

"I didn't learn answers to so many important questions," the Brooklyn Democrat said. "On many, she wouldn't give answers. On many others, she deferred, saying 'I need to sort of bone up on this a little more, I need to come to conclusions.'"


Monday, October 17, 2005

There's an article on about how the White House "hope[s] to relaunch the nomination of Harriet Miers for the Supreme Court by moving from what they call a 'biographical phase' to an 'accomplishment phase.'"

The language -- "relaunch" -- strikes me as kind of bizarre. Like she's a product they're trying to sell. Which, I suppose, she is. Harriet Miers, version 2.0, now with less fat and fewer calories. Harriet Miers, version 2.0, one month free, no credit card number required. Harriet Miers, version 2.0, new packaging, same great taste. The Harriet Miers you've grown to love, now with Calcium. Harriet Miers Gold Edition, including a free six-month trial subscription to Newsweek. Harriet Miers for Kids, now in three great-tasting flavors and without the chalky aftertaste. Harriet Miers now not only gives your mirrors a streak-free shine, but also cleans your leather and upholstery. The new version of Harriet Miers no longer requires refrigeration, and has an easy-to-use pop-top opening, so you don't need the can opener. Harriet Miers is now packaged in resealable plastic, for your convenience. The great taste of Harriet Miers, without the artificial additives. Harriet Miers 2: Harriet Goes to Camp. Harriet Miers: European Gigolo. Harriet Miers' Big Top. Harriet! Now with fifty levels and a bonus reward at the end. Everything you know about Harriet, minus the church attendance. Now you can find Harriet Miers not only at the restaurants you love but also in your grocer's freezer. For a limited time only, Harriet Miers now comes with a free sample of Michael McConnell, in a convenient take-it-with-you plastic case. Dandruff Control Harriet Miers: No more flakes. Special Edition boxes of Harriet Miers now come with a coupon for $5 off your next turkey, just in time for the holidays. Snack size Harriet Miers is perfect for Halloween. Harriet Miers, version 2.0, now with real fruit. The Best of Harriet Miers now available at your local video store, for sale or for rent. Harriet Miers is coming to a city near you. Harriet Miers on Ice. Harriet Miers, with special guest Hayley Duff. Harriet Miers revised paperback edition, with a new afterword by the author. Harriet Miers: Return of the Sith. Harriet 2.0: great taste, less filling. Harriet Miers, now with fewer side effects and a lower probability of dry mouth, dizziness, and chronic fatigue. Buy one Harriet Miers, get the second half-off.

Sunday, October 16, 2005

I saw a neat movie today called Little Manhattan, about an 11-year-old boy in New York whose parents are getting divorced and he falls in love with a girl in his karate class and they have a 2-week "romance" that ends with his first kiss, and, in a contrived ending that thankfully doesn't take away from the coolness of the rest of the film, inspires his parents to get back together. It's better than that description makes it sound.

That link is to The Cranky Critic's review, where he calls it the best movie of the year. I'm not sure I'd quite go that far, but it's a really satisfying 90 minutes, very cute, but done well.

And it's probably the most well-filmed "New York" movie I've ever seen -- that is, it makes New York look terrific, and like a super place to live and it makes Central Park look amazing and, just -- it's a very light, happy, feel-good kind of movie, and makes me happy to live here. That may be because it limits its focus mostly to the upper West side, where rich people live and no one litters and it never rains. But I liked it. Worth seeing.

Saturday, October 15, 2005

I just read New York Times reporter Linda Greenhouse's book, "Becoming Justice Blackmun," about Harry Blackmun's time on the Supreme Court, based mostly on the archive of notes and memos he left behind after he died. It's a terrific book. Really quite terrific. It focuses a great deal on Blackmun's lifelong friendship with Warren Burger -- they knew each other from grade school, became friends, stayed in close touch as their careers headed on different tracks, and were then reunited on the Supreme Court. But as their judicial rulings started to diverge, the friendship dissipated. There are three main themes to the book -- the Burger friendship, Roe v. Wade, and Blackmun's struggle with the death penalty. All three themes are treated so well in the book -- I really couldn't put it down. Gives a portrait of life inside the Supreme Court -- the relationships between justices, the role of the clerks, the loneliness of the job -- that few other books I've seen do. Definitely worth reading, especially in light of all the recent Supreme Court stuff.

Tonight I went to see some sketch comedy. I saw a group perform called Olde English, made up of students and recent graduates from Bard College. They were solid. The website has a whole bunch of video clips. "The Fridgedom" is a funny one.

Friday, October 14, 2005

Apologies for no posts the past few days. I just sent my editor a bunch of new book pages. That's not an excuse, just an explanation. And not even a good one, because of course I had time to post, I just didn't have much to say. Angels were robbed the other night with that dropped third strike call, but I didn't have anything interesting to say about that. I have a list of news-relevant Halloween costumes I'm working on, but I've only thought of 2 so far, and want to have a list of ten. But that'll come to me with some thinking this weekend I think. And then yesterday was Yom Kippur, and so I was busy atoning.

There's a bizarre story in The NY Daily News about the mTV show, "Date My Mom" --

A Russian mother-daughter team is suing the Viacom subsidiary for "emotional distress" allegedly caused by a case of miscommunication on the popular reality show "Date My Mom" - in which a male contestant chooses a daughter to date, based on her mother's sales pitch.

Fortysomething movie producer Irina Stemer and her 19-year-old daughter, Anastasia Camras, appeared on the June 23 episode. Speaking Russian, their lawsuit alleges, Stemer told potential suitor Jorgen Sampson: "My daughter has a very big heart."

But according to court documents obtained by the Daily News' Michelle Caruso, MTV's English subtitles translated: "Jorgen, there is no better piece of a- than my princess Anastasia."

Reality TV. Wow.

Tuesday, October 11, 2005

OK, the "Con Law Study Guides For Miers" project is has its own website that isn't a blog! Seriously. Here's the plan. In the spirit of eliminating needless bureaucracy, I'm cutting out the middle man. The site will consist of photos people send in of themselves (or their friends) mailing packages of study guides to Harriet Miers. I think it's equally funny whether or not anything actually gets mailed or not. A photo of you with a package addressed to Ms. Miers, at:

Harriet Miers
Counsel to the President
c/o The White House
1600 Pennsylvania Avenue NW
Washington, DC 20500

Send it here with your name (or fake name) and city, and I'll post the photo. And can easily blur out your face if you want. Big boxes, little envelopes, at a mailbox, not at a mailbox, big pile of books, small stack of books, I'm sure there are ways to make this creative and funny, and if it catches on, there'll be a whole website filled with photos of people mailing study guides to Harriet Miers in preparation for her confirmation hearings. That's sort of funny, no?

So: a photo. Here. And it'll end up here.

Sunday, October 09, 2005

A couple of bizarre Google searches that came up in my counter just now. People have reached this site in the past twenty minutes while searching for:

"parts of the cow"

"how to keep your ice rink from killing your grass"


"swallow mouthwash"

Usually I don't notice these things, but all three of them kind of stood out. Unfortunately, there's absolutely nothing relevant to any of them on here, and while I'm guessing the second one comes from discussion of the Harvard ice rink last year, and perhaps I've mentioned mouthwash in some context at some point, I have no idea when I've ever talked about "parts of the cow." I can really only name a couple of those. The head.... The udders.... And the part we eat. Is there more?
Orin Kerr over at Volokh posts this quote from a New York Times piece:

Several Republicans, including Mr. Specter, said they steered clear of asking Ms. Miers questions about constitutional law. Mr. Specter, who said the timing of the confirmation hearings would depend in part on when Ms. Miers feels ready, said he initiated a discussion of the shifting standards the Supreme Court has applied in interpreting the Commerce Clause of the Constitution, but only to illustrate to Ms. Miers the kinds of questions she would face during her hearings.

"I did not ask her about it because I don't think she's ready to face it at the moment," he said. "Look, the lady was White House counsel dealing with totally other subjects until Sunday night when the president offered her the job. And Monday she's sitting with me. I'm not going to ask her questions which she hasn't had a chance to study or reflect on."

One of the comments to the post:

Hmm, I think I might have a copy of a ConLaw commercial outline (Gilbert's or some such thing) left over from first year law school I could lend to Ms. Miers so she can "cram" for her exam before the Senate Judiciary Committee.

Which makes me think... that's a great idea... what if a bunch of law students all collected their Con Law study guides together and sent them in a big box to Ms. Miers? What if it became a national movement? I think only of the potential press opportunities, not of any real worthwhile value coming from such a stunt. But what a neat stunt it would be. Maybe. Or maybe it's 2:30 in the morning and I'm just thinking weird.

Maybe. Does this interest anyone? Anyone want to help me create a web site, something like, only better, and do this for real? Or am I just being stupid? Anyway, if anyone wants to do this with me, shoot me an e-mail. That'll help me gauge whether I'm being stupid or not. :)

Saturday, October 08, 2005

I just saw a commercial for Burger King's new "meat-normous" breakfast sandwich, which appears to be an omelet topped with sausage, bacon, and ham. Plus cheese. The website says "Have a meaty morning." I checked the nutritional information section of the website. They don't yet have this item listed, but they have an "enormous omelet sandwich," which appears to be the same but without the ham. The ham, as listed in some other breakfast sandwiches, merely adds 35 calories, 1 gram of fat, 15 milligrams of cholesterol, and 770 (!) milligrams of sodium. The ham is the least of the concerns. Adding the ham to the enormous omelet sandwich yields the following profile:

775 calories
47 grams of fat
345 milligrams of cholesterol
2720 milligrams of sodium

In fact, after I did this math, I clicked on "regional menu items," which is a pdf file that adds a whole bunch of things that aren't on the main site, and found the meat-normous sandwich there, and these numbers match up exactly.

This is the least healthy breakfast item available at Burger King, but a close second are the Biscuits Sausage and Gravy platter, a regional item that has 760 calories, 40 grams of fat, and 2290 milligrams of sodium.

No, wait, there's another winner. The scrambled egg platter with sausage. 920 calories, 62 grams of fat, 375 milligrams of cholesterol, and 1850 milligrams of sodium. Wow.

Burger King. Have it your way. With lots of fat. Wow.

Friday, October 07, 2005

This is going to interest about none of you, but there's a great column about the Royals' recent history of pitching coachesin the Kansas City Star. Really neat column, if you're a baseball fan. Trust me on this one, it's worth the click-through. Found the link by reading Rob & Rany on the Royals which is always awesome.
Wow. Link courtesy of How Appealing, I just read a New Republic article called "Welcome to the Hackocracy" --

The events of the past months have awakened the press to the true nature of the Bush administration. It is overrun with hacks--that is, government officials with waifish resumés padded like the Michelin man, whose political connections have won them important national responsibilities.


[W]hile cronies populate every presidency, no administration has etched the principles of hackocracy into its governing philosophy as deeply as this one. If there's an underappreciated corner of the bureaucracy to fill, it has found just the crony (or college roommate of a crony), party operative (or cousin of a party operative) to fill it. To honor this achievement, we've drawn up a list of the 15 biggest Bush administration hacks--from the highest levels of government to the civil servant rank and file. The tnr 15 is a diverse group--from the assistant secretary of commerce who started his career by supplying Bush with Altoids to the Republican National Committee chair-turned-Veterans Affairs secretary who forgot about wounded Iraq war vets--but they all share two things: responsibility and inexperience.

Worth checking out the rest of the article. (It's blocked behind a registration wall, but you can register for free.)

Thursday, October 06, 2005

Tuesday night, I went to my uncle's house for the Jewish New Year, and had a really delicious home-cooked meal (I've enjoyed the leftovers for lunch and dinner today, too). What happens at lots of holidays in my family is that my grandma will make some of the food and bring it, and my aunt's mother will make some of the food and bring it... I like to imagine there's this subtle undercurrent of competition over whose food is better, not so much between the two of them, but whenever I eat something my aunt's mother made, if I don't immediately retch, or god forbid I actually tell her it's good, I imagine my mom giving me a dirty look, as if I'm not being loyal to my grandma, and betraying my side of the family. Maybe it just makes the night more interesting to imagine that people are really keeping score of what gets eaten. I imagine this isn't unique to my family. I was telling my roommate this tonight, and he thought it sounded like a sketch idea. So... here's my sketch. I think it's kind of funny.


(Lights up on a holiday table. On one end of the table sits Grandma Bertha. At the other end of the table sits Grandma Ethel. Billy and Barbara, their grandchildren sit in the middle. Mom and Dad enter with trays of food.)

MOM (setting down her trays)
Dessert is going to be a treat tonight, kids. Grandma Bertha made these delicious brownies and this fantastic apple pudding. They look great, mom.

(Mom sits down next to Grandma Bertha.)

DAD (setting down his trays)
Yes, those look… okay. But Grandma Ethel made these unbelievable jelly cookies, and the best pound cake you can imagine. Mom, I had a piece in the kitchen and I had an orgasm.

(Dad sits down next to Grandma Ethel.)

Well, I’m having an orgasm just thinking about that apple pudding. Dig in, kids. Who wants some apple pudding?

(Neither kid says anything.)

(sternly) I said, who wants some of this delicious apple pudding? Eat the apple pudding, kids. It’s unbelievable.

(Mom puts some apple pudding on two plates and gives them to Billy and Barbara.)

I’ll just have a cookie, actually.

(Dad hands her a cookie.)

Excellent choice.

Honey, don’t influence the kids. They want to eat Grandma Bertha’s apple pudding. Don’t force Grandma Ethel’s cookies down their throat. It’s not Grandma Ethel’s fault she’s not as good a cook as Grandma Bertha here.

Sweetie, she asked for a cookie.

She didn’t mean it. Did you honey?

I just wanted a cookie, Mom. It’s just a cookie.

(Mom gives Barbara a dirty look.)

MOM (to Bertha)
I’m sure she loves you anyway, Grandma Bertha. Even if she’s doing a terrible job of showing it.

(very tentatively) Can I have a brownie…

(accusatory) How’d that math test go today…

… and a piece of pound cake?

(DAD nods approvingly. He gives Billy a piece of cake.)

Just a small piece, Dad.

(sternly) You mean a big piece.

Okay. Whatever you say.

This cookie is really good, Grandma Ethel.

She didn’t mean that, mom. She didn’t mean that.

Let her make up her own mind, honey. She likes the cookie. It’s not a surprise. (to Ethel, like she’s an infant) You’re the winner, mom. You’re the winner!

I like the pound cake… and the brownie….

Which one do you like more?

They’re both very good.

But which one do you like more?

I like them both.

Pick one, Billy. PICK ONE!

(Billy runs from the table in tears.)

See what you did. Why do you make them choose? It’s not a competition.

(Barbara spits out some apple pudding.)

She spit out the apple pudding! She spit it out!

(Dad gets up and does a victory dance around the table.)

What is wrong with you… Barbara? Put that apple pudding back in your mouth. It’s delicious. Put it back. Put it back in there.

(Mom reaches across the table, picks up the half-chewed pudding, and shoves it back in her daughter’s mouth.)

You’re torturing her, honey. My mom’s cookies? Completely pleasant experience. Your mom’s apple pudding? Torture.

Eat a brownie, honey.


I said, eat a brownie.

Never in a million years. But I’m going to eat twelve cookies.

(Dad takes twelve cookies and shoves them into his mouth.)

And this entire pound cake.

(Dad picks up the entire pound cake and tries to eat it.)

Yeah, well I can’t get enough of this apple pudding, mom. It’s so good.

(Mom sticks her face into the bowl of apple pudding and tries to devour it whole.)

Can I have another cookie please?

(Dad gets up and does another victory dance around the table. As he passes Mom, he shoves her head further into the bowl of apple pudding.)

(Billy re-enters, holding a fruit cake.)

Mom, Dad, what about this fruitcake that Uncle Tom sent?

(Mom and Dad both leap onto Billy and tear him apart, limb by limb.)


Wednesday, October 05, 2005

A great interview with Paul Collins, who's one of my favorite writers. He has a new book out about Thomas Paine that I just ordered from Amazon. I don't buy too many books, but I don't want to wait for this one to get to the library. Check out the interview.
The Rangers just hired a 28-year-old as their general manager. Link. He's Cornell class of '99. Man, I feel old. This news is probably enough to send a fair number of baseball fans into a tailspin. Not about this guy at all -- I'm sure he's awesome... to be hand-picked by John Hart, the guy he's replacing, I'm guessing he's got to have a lot on the ball -- but just about how old it makes the rest of us feel.

Actually, this promotion makes him over-qualified for the Supreme Court now. :)
An e-mail from a reader:

Dear Jeremy and Jeremy's readers,

I have just started 1L at U of Toronto, Canada's hardest to get into - and presumably "best" law school. I have my eye set on a NYC firm, mostly because Toronto big firms will probably work me as much, paying me $50 K less, I won't have to spend a year "articling" (yes, Cdn. law students spend a year working as lawyers-in-training, and often receive only training wages for it), and since I'm interested in commercial law work, NYC has more complex stuff going on, more interesting clients, basically a better place to start a career.

Now, what I know, or suspect I know: in terms of requirements to get - LSAT, grades, etc., U of T is equal to a top 10 school. That's why they charge the highest tuition in Canada. However, what is not clear is how U of T graduates - and other Cdn graduates - are perceived by firms in the US? Does my school work out to a top 10 school, a tier 2 school, a tier 4 school???

Would greatly appreciate it you or some of your readers could help clarify the situation as it now stands.

Tuesday, October 04, 2005

There's a New Yorker article by the always-excellent Malcolm Gladwell about Ivy League admissions and how it's as much about luxury branding as it is about actual academic accomplishment, and about how the name of the school means a lot less than we pretend it does. Or something like that. His thesis isn't crystal-clear. But it's an interesting piece anyway. The article mentions Hunter College Elementary School as an institution that accepts students entirely on test scores, instead of more complex formulations like selective colleges use. I went to Hunter College High School, which did the same thing. I don't think I ever really thought about the difference between something like that and what colleges do, but I guess it's different. Anyway, Gladwell's good, he writes interesting pieces, and this one's interesting.

Also, and I apologize for the recent political stuff, and for linking to George Will, but he has an interesting op-ed about the Miers stuff.
The first game of the baseball playoffs is about to start. As I think about the playoffs, and about the Harriet Miers nomination, I realize I'm actually glad that President Bush is in the White House instead of still the owner of a baseball team. If he owned, say, the St. Louis Cardinals, who open their playoff series against the Padres in about 20 minutes, I'd be worried about who'd be taking the field.

Perhaps we'd see this pre-game press conference, much like Bush's press conference this morning:

PRESIDENT BUSH: Yesterday, I nominated an outstanding individual to start the first game of the playoffs. Over the past three decades, Dick Cheney has built a stellar record of accomplishment. He's been a model of service to his country and to our citizens. I've known him for more than 10 years. I know his character. He's a man of principle and deep conviction. He shares my philosophy that the high fastball is a tough pitch for hitters to hit.

QUESTION: Mr. President, of all of the people in the United States you had to choose from, is Dick Cheney really the most qualified to pitch in the playoffs?

BUSH: Yes. Otherwise, I wouldn't have chosen him.

QUESTION: But last year, you chose Roger Clemens, who came to the field with a stellar record of accomplishment, years of experience, and the unparalleled qualifications to be sure the team had the best possible chance to win the game. And this time, you're going with your Vice President, a man we have no evidence can actually throw a major-league-quality fastball.

BUSH: Look -- please, please. I've known Dick Cheney for over a decade. I've worked with him. He's a man of principle and character. He's highly intelligent. He's been a pioneer. He's an enormously accomplished person who's incredibly bright.

QUESTION: But he's not a major league pitcher. Think of all the other choices you had. Chris Carpenter. Jason Marquis. Jeff Suppan. All key parts of the Cardinals rotation.

BUSH: Please let me finish. Dick Cheney knows the kind of pitcher I'm looking for. After all, he was a part of the process that selected Roger Clemens last time. He knows what I'm interested in. He's a fine choice. He shares my philosophy.

QUESTION: Mr. President, you've also selected to replace Albert Pujols at first base with Karen Hughes. Can you explain that decision?

BUSH: I know Karen Hughes well enough to be able to say that she's not going to change; that in the ninth inning she'll be the same person, with the same philosophy about holding the runner, and fielding ground balls, that she is today. She'll have more experience, she'll have been a ballplayer, but nevertheless, her philosophy won't change. And that's important to me. That was important to me when I picked Roger Clemens. It's important for me in picking Karen Hughes.

QUESTION: But there are hundreds and hundreds of well-qualified baseball players out there. Isn't it odd that you'd find the most qualified pitchers and hitters in the world to be the people in the office down the hall from you?

BUSH: One of the most interesting ideas I heard was, "Why don't you pick somebody who doesn't know how to play baseball? Why don't you reach outside the -- I think one advisor said -- the playing field? And I thought it was an interesting idea. And I thought long and hard about it. And so recognizing that Dick Cheney at pitcher, and Karen Hughes at first base, and my mother, Barbara Bush, at catcher, would bring not only their own unique expertise but a fresh approach, I chose them. And they'll be a really good team.

QUESTION: Some baseball fans have said you did not pick players like Pujols and Jim Edmonds and Larry Walker to start because you shied away from a battle with the Padres. Is there any truth to that?

BUSH: Well, I just described to you why I picked them. I'll be glad to go over it again if you like. They share my baseball philosophy. They are extraordinary people. Paul Wolfowitz at second base is an excellent choice. The decision as to whether or not there'll be a fight is up to the Padres. They get to decide whether or not the quality of play will decide the result of the game.

QUESTION: What about charges of cronyism?

BUSH: I just answered. I picked the best people I could find. People know we're close. But you've got to understand, because of our closeness, I know the character of these people. It's one thing to say a person can hit a baseball -- and that may be seen by some as important. But what also matters are the intangibles. To me, a person's strength of character counts a lot. I know their hearts. I know the heart of my new shortstop, Margaret Spellings. As a result of my friendship with Dick Cheney, I know his heart. That's more important than "talent" and "experience."

QUESTION: Have you ever discussed with Dick Cheney his view on the slider? Or have you gleaned from his comments his views on that subject?

BUSH: I have no litmus test. It's also something I've consistently said. There is no litmus test. What matters to me is his general baseball philosophy. What does he believe the proper role of the pitcher is relative to the other people on the field. And so there's no litmus test.

QUESTION: You said a few minutes ago that you're proud of your choices, but there was a lot of hand-wringing when you made the annoucement yesterday about Dick Cheney. Peter Gammons said he was depressed and demoralized, and Jayson Stark said it was a pick out of weakness. What do you say to these critics specifically? And how can you convince them that Cheney is as talented as closer Jason Isringhausen?

BUSH: I guess I'll start over. I hope they're listening. First, he's a man of enormous accomplishment. He will not legislate from the mound. I also remind them that I think it's important to bring somebody from outside the playing field, somebody that hasn't been on the mound. And, therefore, there's not a lot of statistics for people to look at. I know his character, I know his strength, I know his talent, and I know he's going to be a fine pitcher.

Thank you, and I look forward to the game.
An interesting Wall Street Journal piece about the Miers nomination, written by Randy Barnett, who wrote the contracts casebook I used 1L year, which, as casebooks go, was pretty un-terrible.

And a New York Post piece that says pretty much what I tried to say yesterday.
L'Shana Tova, or, Happy New Year. I like the Jewish holidays. The food is good.

Monday, October 03, 2005

This is a funny idea I wish I'd thought of first. Oh well. Next time.
I've done a bit of reading the past couple of hours about the President's new pick for the Supreme Court, Harriet Miers, the current White House Counsel, and the President's former personal attorney. I feel like my opinions about political issues are often naive, and of course there are lots of people who've done a lot more smart thinking about these things than I have. But this seems like a terrible civics lesson the President has been teaching the country lately. We grow up believing that the Supreme Court is this tremendous institution, and the justices who serve on the Court are somehow special. That they're the best this country has to offer. Regardless of which side of the political aisle they come from, there's a hope and an expectation that they're brilliant legal minds, supremely accomplished people, distinguished, exceptional jurists. Maybe part of that image was eroded by the Clarence Thomas hearings. Which I remember, even though I guess I was like 12 at the time, as being pretty absurd. Not that being a Supreme Court justice should necessarily be a reward for being a brilliant legal scholar, but, yeah, in a way, sort of, maybe, a little. The Roberts pick seemed to reinforce that. His credentials are pretty impeccable. He's clearly someone who's at the highest level of his profession, who's spent years intellectually engaged with the law and the issues he'll have to deal with on the court.

And now the President's personal lawyer is nominated? She ran the Texas Lottery Commission, which sounds a lot like the Arabian Horse Show, or whatever it is that Michael Brown ran. Was Michael Brown's demonstrated incompetence not enough to prove that maybe, just maybe, the President's friends are not the best people to be in top positions in this country? See, actually, it's interesting to me that while it bothers me that the President keeps putting his friends into positions they're not qualified for, it bothers me more that the President doesn't have brilliantly qualified friends. I mean, disregarding this particular President, just speaking generally, shouldn't we expect that someone who has risen to the highest position of the power in the country has spent his life surrounding himself with smart and talented people? Shouldn't we expect that if anyone should be able to identify and cultivate a network of smart and competent people, it's the person this country is saying is the most competent we have to lead it? Again, just generally, not thinking about any President in particular -- these are the people we're saying are the best we have; I would think the company they keep ought to be pretty neat too.

Reagan and Clinton both bore out the idea that anyone can grow up to be President. Whatever anyone's opinion about either of them is, they didn't grow up in families where this kind of thing was expected, but they somehow rose to the top. I grew up thinking this was one of the things that made this country special. That no matter where you start, you can rise to the top on your own merits. And now we have a President who -- again, regardless of anyone's political beliefs, I hope -- if his father hadn't been President, it's awfully hard to envision the scenario where he becomes President. And to compound it, he fills his administration with his trusted advisors, loyal to him, but with questionable qualifications. There's an article on Slate from last week about how Karen Hughes is a bizarre choice to be trying to make Muslim women like us, and that there surely must be qualified women with more understanding of and experience with the Arab culture to be undersecretary of state for whatever it is she is. And now, nothing against Harriet Miers, but everything I'm reading says that she's a fine lawyer, and there are a hundred other lawyers equally fine, and at least a few dozen more people who are actual intellectual superstars, actual examples of the best this country has, and they're being passed over for the President's personal lawyer. On the Supreme Court.

Happening to be friends with the President shouldn't be what gets someone appointed to the Supreme Court. Or head of FEMA. Or undersecretary of state. Or anything. I thought we knocked this out a hundred years ago with Civil Service Reform. I guess we didn't. It would be nice to think we live in a country where the cream can actually rise to the top, and it doesn't completely depend on who you know. I guess that's naive. Thanks, Mr. President.

Unless I'm wrong. Unless this is part of a greater strategy, to waste the Democrats' energy on a nominee he knows will never get confirmed, and then once she's voted down, he nominates a "real" choice, and the Democrats' political capital has already been spent and the real choice gets in, and the President thinks that this is the only plan by which that ends up happening. In which case, better than the alternative, but in itself a sad commentary on the partisan nature of the process... but still, better than the alternative, a sad commentary about what it takes to rise in this country.

I'm sure there's a great counter-argument to everything I've said. I'll post it if you send it to me.

Sunday, October 02, 2005

I have a bizarre request. I'm looking for an articulate and angry lawyer to let me buy you lunch and listen to you vent a little bit. I'm looking for someone at a law firm, and frustrated, who doesn't know if it's really the life he or she wants to be living.

I can't think of a better way to do this than to just try putting this post out there and seeing if anyone e-mails me. Obviously this is book-related. I'm just trying to get a feel for some real anger that may or may not be out there. It's hard, in a way, because a lot of the emotions I felt last summer aren't at the forefront anymore. I'm not at a law firm. I know people who enjoy their law firm jobs. It's not for everyone, but I think there a lot of places that aren't evil, and people who aren't evil, and that it's a perfectly reasonable choice for a lot of law students. My recent posts filled with e-mails I didn't write are evidence of that. People feel all sorts of ways.

Okay, so if you're in New York and angry and willing to let me buy you lunch, send me an e-mail... and you can do it through an anonymous account if you want, and not tell me any details about where you work, if that'll make you feel better... that's not a problem at all.
I've seen some musicals this week that were part of the New York Musical Theater Festival, which closed today. has reviews of three that I saw:

Monica The Musical

The Tutor

The View From Here

I basically agree with the reviews, and don't have a ton more to add, except that I do want to say that "The View From Here," which I saw this afternoon, was really quite good. It's an 80-minute song cycle, where one actor just gets up there and sings for a while, but there's a real story, and there's forward motion, and it was very compelling, very well done. And a lot of it's online. Well, the songs at least. You can listen to the songs here, sung by the composer, not the actor who did it on stage. I hope they put out a CD of the actor doing it, because he was exceptionally good. Most theater stuff I've seen recently is okay but doesn't make me want to come home and write about it, so I figured having seen something that does, I would.

I also saw a neat show earlier this week called "Listen, Kid," which was a musical that presented off-kilter life lessons to children, through song -- like, it's good that your parents are getting divorced because you get two sets of presents. Cute stuff, nicely written and performed.

Of course, neither of these shows are playing anywhere anymore, so, until their next incarnations, all you've got are my reviews. Oh well.

Saturday, October 01, 2005

It's hard to be a Mets fan when the Yankees make the playoffs every year. I was really hoping the Yankees would be left on the sidelines, but, oh well, life goes on. :)

Another interesting e-mail on the thread from last week:

I am a 2L going through the job applications and interview process at a top 20-25 school.

I was recently motivated by some of the law focused posts to add my two cents.

I did this because I managed a business for a while, did more grunt work for a while, and worked on a Ph.D. at a top 3 school before deciding on law school. I carefully analyzed the drawbacks and concluded that law school was a good deal because basically, every job has the same payoffs & drawbacks. They are that you can work really hard for more money or another compelling outcome, or you can do less and feel unappreciated and underpaid, but have a better life.

So why was law school a good choice?

Because it gives you all of these choices after only 3 years of graduate school. And it allows you to achieve high levels of one thing (money, compelling outcome) if you really want to, without a long start up time. Also, at lots of these medium income positions, you wind up working a lot of hours anyway.

Of course, debt can restrict these choices. At the time, I didn’t know which choice I wanted, so I hedged on my law school choice.

(I turned down a few top 10 schools for a scholarship & a program more friendly to non-firm careers.)

Basically, if you truly don’t care about money or prestige, you can be very happy as a small school prof., a public interest lawyer, a family doctor, or some other lower income position, but if you really care about these positions, you may work a ton at them too. If you want to work 9-5 make some money & have plenty of time, be a carpenter or a union laborer. If you want mad dough, but have no time, be a big firm lawyer, ambitious MBA, or surgeon. If you want to make a difference, be a public interest lawyer, a non-profit manager, or a small town doctor. Many careers don’t give you the choice of big bucks or doing something you like.

My realization was that I worked hard and a lot at whatever I wound up doing and that law gave me the option of choosing three options: Work very hard for lots of money, work very hard to make a discernable difference, or work not so hard for decent money. These are really all of the options there are, unless you have an extremely privileged and wealthy situation, in which case you may even get to be President and take several 5 week vacations a year. Many careers don’t offer that many choices. Rarely can you have it all, so you have to choose which option you like the best. Because the truth is, there are enough people out there who will give up their lives and hours for the money so that if you want the money, you have to work for it. So people who decide what they really want out of life, choose it, go with it, and stop regretting the benefits they chose to forego are probably happier than those who want it all and worry about how to get it.

Of course, I still haven’t completely figured this out yet for myself.