Amy and I have been married for four years as of today. About five years ago I developed a crush on this girl. We fell in love and then got married. Between us we've been in three school programs. We've had babies and totally fallen for those babies. We've moved back and forth across the country. Been to Hawaii and Aruba and even to Woburn!

Amy taught me to sew and I made her a handbag. I tried to teach her HTML and she was a good sport. We've learned to bicker and then get over it. We've had four or five gray hairs (all Amy's but I'm getting the ear hair).

We've both realized that we are a better match than we ever thought when we were dating. That sleep deprivation makes us cranky. That Macs are more fun than PCs. That it's nice to have a clean house but sometimes it's nicer to watch HGTV.

The great thing is that I still have a crush on that girl.

I love you Amy B. And I promise that in four years I won't still be in school.

I decided in order to be a "better" student that I would take on an extra 10 pm to midnight study shift after the kids went to bed. I should have listened to Amy's warnings as I made it about two weeks until I burned out (I hit snooze repeatedly for a solid hour yesterday morning, without a single complaint from Amy--bless her heart) and got sick (the kids had it, my classmates had it, so maybe I was doomed regardless, but adding sleep deprivation to the mix certainly didn't help).

I just can't play fast and loose with sleep the way I used to (let's be honest I lost that ability probably 5 years ago). So here I am back to being sick and tired and triaging my work to get as many of the essentials done as I can and letting the rest go. Which is a fine place to be and maybe I'd feel better about it if I got a bit more respect from my son. As I left to go to school today he said, "Why don't you go to a real school da-da?"

After having to struggle taking Ollie's "sorta Legos" apart for the fifth time last night we decided to splurge a bit and get the real thing. There are two things to note about real Legos. First, they cost more than you would expect and second, they're worth it. There's a surprising satisfaction in putting two blocks together. There's a slight chatter as the pegs align, then they slide smoothly together with just the right tension...beautiful.

Apparently, Legos are made (28,500 per minute) with such precision that only 18 out of a million are defective and todays blocks still connect with the original sets made in 1958.

My mom had been compiling a list of things that are worth spending extra on (she's a recent convert to first class flying). Mom, you can add Legos to your list.

One L

The classic memoir about law school is Scott Turow's One L, first published in 1977. The basic structure of schooling is the same but the feel is much different (less dramatic) than Turow describes. Before his first exam he describes drinking wine, taking sleeping pills, and taking valium all in an effort to cool his nerves and get to sleep. He finally flails at his mattress before passing out. I did none of those things, though who can't use a good mattress flail every now and then.

I think there are two basic reasons for the difference in drama. First, the professors have lost their hard edge. Rather than humiliate you for missing an answer to a question they will say, "that's one way to interpret it." And the Socratic method is nothing more than a class discussion, except rather than seeking volunteers the teacher will refer to his giant poster board with each of our pictures pasted over our assigned seat (I couldn't make this up) and call on someone at random. Second, to write an entire book about law school you have to be a bit of a dramatic person. Law school is hard work but it is a kind of sustained steady drudgery that doesn't readily produce a great plot.

But in looking over the book recently there was one excerpt that rang true and it was his description of how he felt after his first round of tests. I looked forward to the end of finals but when that time finally arrived I just felt a bit sick and robbed. I worked too hard all semester for it to just end in a flash. Here's how Turow described his feelings:

In the aftermath of exams, I felt bitter and cheated...I felt insulted by them--there's no other way to put it. Finals were regarded with an institutional earnestness which had left my classmates and me believing for months that the tests would offer some consummate evaluation, not simply of how well we'd learned, but--almost mystically--of the depths of our capacity in the law. Exams were something to point to, a proving ground for all the hard and sincere labor. And instead they had been intellectual quick-draw contests, frantic exercises that seemed to place no premium on sustained insight and imagination which I most admired in others, and when they occurred, felt proudest of in myself.

Maybe (probably) he is overstating himself but not by too much.

One of my classmates recently sent this link to me. It's pretty sweet (ahh sweet not schweet! sweet).

I'm just finishing watching the Democratic debates on DVR; I have to say it's quite refreshing. It's nice to see the candidates being cordial and respectful of each other's talents and positions.

It's especially nice after watching the Republican debate and its endless bickering about who can kick out the most immigrants and extend the war in Iraq the longest (and of course Paul's call for a return to the gold standard--it'll get us back to those roaring 20s). Really, how long could they debate the exact wording of Romney's hiding in the weeds quote?