August 31st 2004

grade curves

Is it weird that grade curves are really odd to me?

My undergraduate institution did not use curves. If any particular professors did, they did not tell us. The grade you got was the grade you deserved. I’ve always felt that was fair.

The whole concept, in fact, of a teacher grading on a curve, seems sort of mean. In essence, no matter how well you do, if you aren’t in the highest percentile, you won’t get an A. I could do A-quality work, but if some predetermined slice of other students in my class do A+ quality work, I could very easily be assigned a B instead of an A.

This is something I am not going to like about law school.

New tack

The last few weeks have been unproductive. Once I had my wisdom teeth out, my schedule went to pot. I stopped studying as regularly and I stopped going to the gym in the morning. Consequently, my practice test scores have suffered and I have gained about five pounds. Both of these things are unacceptable.

I’m a firm believer in recognizing your weaknesses and countering them however you can. And here’s what I’ve noticed about me:

  • As much as I like the way I feel when I go to the gym early in the morning, I am not an early riser. It is far more likely that I’ll reset the alarm and stay in bed at 6 am than actually get up and venture out to the gym. I know this because I have done it several times in the last three weeks.
  • When I am at home, almost anything else I can do will be more attractive than studying. And when at home, there are lots of other things for me to do—not just the unproductive ones, like watching TV and reading novels, but also the homeowner things, like cleaning and drywall repair.

So. These shortcomings firmly in mind, I’m making some “New [School] Year Resolutions.” Nevermind that I’m not in school; I work for an educational institution, so I feel the academic cycle as much as any other student or teacher. These resolutions are:

  • I will go to the gym after work. This will be more inconvenient for me, as the gym is much more crowded at 5:30 pm than at 6:15 am, but the morning thing just isn’t happening. My punishment for being so lazy in the morning, then, is that I will fight rush hour traffic, scavenge for a parking space, and actually get some exercise.
  • I will follow up my trip to the gym with a trip to one of my favorite coffeehouses, where I will be without my computer and wireless access—and therefore without distractions. I will study for the LSAT. I will take practice tests. If I begin to feel confident in my performance on said practice tests, I may work on my personal statement—again, though, sans computer. I will work in longhand. This will probably be more productive anyway, since I won’t get caught up on a single turn of phrase and attempt to edit it to perfection as I am writing. This is the problem with word processing.

The beautiful thing is that husband is in class late two nights a week. So my gym/coffeehouse schedule will work beautifully on those nights. The nights he’s in class but not late, I can still go to the gym after work and beat him home. And finally, he has agreed to come with me to a coffeehouse or some location that is not our home on the weekends so we can BOTH get some studying done.

This, I think, is good practice for the future.

August 30th 2004

divine angst

This article makes me feel better about being the oldest woman in my family without a child.

blogroll update

Bloglines has added a feature that makes it easy to keep your blogroll up-to-date. Insert a line of code into your template, and all of your public subscriptions appear, neatly listed. Consequently, you’ll notice some new folks on my list that I’ve been subscribing to but hadn’t added to the roll yet. Welcome!

August 29th 2004

atticus finch

Watching To Kill a Mockingbird. God, I love this movie. The book is good (I haven’t read it in years—probably since middle school) but the movie is phenomenal. I just love Atticus Finch.

a taste of the future

Mr. Angst is taking some classes this semester (and next, for that matter) at the local community college—primarily math and programming classes to fulfill prerequisites for the masters programs he’s looking at.

He’s only been in class a week, and I hate it. Not that he’s in class, and not even that he’s in class relatively late most nights of the week. We’re pretty good at squeezing in what time we can, when we can.

No, I’m hating the disruption. Suddenly my schedule is all out of whack. Usually, we eat dinner together almost every night of the week; now, he’s eating out three nights a week, and I’m left to either cook for one (blech) or scavenge what leftovers there may be. Or eat a sandwich (double blech). When he gets home, he has homework to do—which is also fine, as watching him work encourages me to study for the LSAT and work on my personal statement—but the added tasks mean we go to bed later and more tired, and that makes getting up early enough to do productive things before work even harder.

I know that, next year, we’ll be dealing with the same kind of upheaval and I’m not looking forward to it.

The things I am looking forward to: having something more to do in the evenings and on the weekends than household chores (I much prefer studying to housework). Reasons to actually get research done in preparation for writing. Lots of extra reasons not to watch TV more than I should (I often put it on just for the white noise, and find myself sucked into shows I have no real interest in). Using my brain. Being in school.

August 28th 2004

urgh

Just when I start thinking positive…today’s practice LSAT was not good. I backtracked by 4 whole points. I’m a little hungover, not really motivated, and have probably done too much thinking about things lately. Oddly, my games performance remained the same — about 16 correct. It was the other sections that I lost points on.

Good experience, though, good experience. After all, I could feel bad or be mentally fuzzy on the actual day, just like this morning. Just have to get over that. And over the feeling that the practice tests don’t really have any meaning. That hurts my motivation to sit through the damn thing and keep my focus up.

I had a very bizarre

I had a very bizarre dream last night. I don’t entirely remember the whole thing, but the main gist of it was that I had, somehow, committed a crime—or had been present during the commission of a crime—and then, in self-defense, I had to shoot someone.

[This, in itself, is weird, because I despise guns.]

Then I was having to get ready to go to jail, and cleaning out my father’s Cadillac, which he hasn’t owned in five years and which, apparently, I had been using as an escape vehicle. And everyone was being very nice to me, helping me clean out the car so they could then take me away to jail. Then, in my dream, it finally hit me: Oh no! I’m going to jail! And, then, I thought, Now I’ll never get to go to law school! THAT made me cry. And I cried for a while.

So everyone tried to comfort me, saying things like, Oh, you’ll just have to explain things to the bar, but you can still be a lawyer, it’ll be OK, it really will… And I thought, Oh yes, I’m still going to go to law school. Oh my gosh, I can write the BEST personal statement about this!

“I stood, gun in hand, not knowing what I had done, but sure that I could never be a lawyer now, not after I’d killed a man…

Oh yeah. Law school, here I come.

August 27th 2004

too busy, too busy

I have three parties to attend this weekend.

This, to my mind, is too many, particularly considering that two of them are short-notice parties. And of the short notice parties is a one-year old’s birthday party! Gah! Now I have to buy a gift. Thankfully, the other two are gift-free. Not having to buy a gift makes a short-notice party much more palatable, but it’s still inconvenient: It wrecks my weekend plans.

This weekend, I hoped to do some writing, take a full-length practice LSAT, fix the

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