Well, I apologize for the lack of blogging.
I can happily report that this has been a crazy-productive week for me. I don't think I'm 100% caught up on sleep, but *so* many things have fallen into place. And just in time - I start in county court next week.
Mostly, I'm getting caught up on small nagging domestic things - hem the pants, fix the bike, get kitchen plates, deep clean the bathroom, buy vacuum that can deal with my place, get the air mattress, get the car tags changed over, update every address-holder, update all my bar exam info, buy the plane tickets for the wedding, so on so on so on. There's still a list, but it's full of less crucial stuff. I think I've done pretty well on going through the big moving list I had, and didn't surrender to the "fuck it, I'll just go with the easiest/first option" mentality. Which is good, because although I have a (small) discretionary income for the first time in, well, awhile, I don't have enough money not to search for good deals on things.
Due to the move, I currently have a weirdly complete sense of my stuff. I think I've touched almost every object that I own in the past two week or so, what with the unpacking and sorting and the mending and discarding.
I have far more pens than I though I had, once I consolidated them into one place. On the other hand, I'd find part of one thing or another, and wonder what has become of the odd associated bits. Many of these fragments come from my pre-law-school life (yes, I had one, and no, it wasn't 'college'). I know that a number of those missing items, records, objects, what have you. were deliberately discarded by me at one point or another. Some for good reasons (unburdening) and some for not so good reasons - or, at least, reasons that proved to be silly in retrospect. On the other hand, while the canvass is never really blank, it's easy to have too many anchors in your life - ties that prevent you from going forward. And, to complete the waffle, it's not that I like change for change's sake - it's that I (like many, I presume) have a dangerous tendency to rely on the comforts of memory (nostalgia, really) as embodied in physical things, and hence, can shy from acknowledging that, to many situations, there is simply no going back.
Identity is a many-splendored thing, and, let's face it, if you've led any kind of a life at all you can't hold all of it in your head at once. Sometimes it's truly wonderful to find some small things and think - "Shit, now that I see this, I actually remember this great time I had, talking to some naturalists in California." On the other hand, it's dangerous to be a "recent-something" - there's a kind of gravitational force to it. Recent law-student-dom is something I'm trying to shed, not hold on to. And my clients might even thank me for it one day, if they knew.
And speaking of moving forward, as far as the job goes, I've been observing, drinking in as much as I can, which is the whole goal for the initial orientation period I'm in. My mentor/training attorney has been simply fantastic. Perhaps we're just a good match but she's allowed me the freedom to get a lot of exposure to different aspects of the system without getting bogged down in minutiae. Of course, there is minutiae, and plenty of it, but I get to dip into what seems to be the most helpful things to know. One of the other high points in the month was an Acting-for-Lawyers workshop, that focused on voice and conveying passion. Pretty cool stuff really. I feel I've been lucky enough to be spending my time with people who (rightly) actually want you to do well - they hand you weapons and tips at every opportunity and encourage you to get better at what you do. It's sort of the opposite of law school.
During my time in the courthouse, I've watched quite a number of defense attorneys and prosecutors, and am constantly surprised at how differently people approach issues and handle situations. I'm still figuring out what/how I'll go about different things, but I know what I'd *like* to do, and I know, ultimately, that I will find my own level and style (for lack of a better word).
I've been thinking a lot about how "attorney demeanor" interacts with the strategic decisions attorneys make. This may be the legal equivalent of the sympathetic fallacy, but there really does seem to be a correlation between *what* an attorney goes about pursuing and *how* the thing is actually pursued. For example, I'm thinking of things like issues in a trial (as prioritized in a closing), approaches to deposing witnesses, basic client interaction/case investigation. I've seen quiet/loud attorneys, bulldogish/sociable attorneys, write-it-down/wing-it attorneys, hyper-attentive/seemingly-distracted attorneys, etc. And I've seen all of them capture things I'd never have thought of, and let pass by things I'd have pursued.
There's really an incredible range of viable approaches out there.
The most difficult part of this month has been remembering everyones names given that I bounce around a lot and often meet people in bunches of 5-10. I've spent most of my time in court (next most in depositions). In fact, during the past 3 weeks, I've spent probably about 5 hours in my office (soon to be former office). Tomorrow I'll take the duffel bag of stuff over to my new office, which is a block away from the main building.
In some ways I've been in stealth/isolation mode - at least one person thought I was a summer intern, not a new hire. I'm not sure what that says. Also, nearly every cop, when I'm sitting in on a deposition, asks if I'm a State Attorney. Weird. Perhaps I should have kept the handlebars after all (although they'd kill me in this heat).
All in all things seem well, and I'm excited for the move over to county court. I'm also excited that I can theoretically explore Miami (soon) and start to find those things that I love in every city. I need a good used bookstore.
It's also Labor Day. Who knew? I've been so busy it's crept up on me. There's been some labor in there, but mostly it's been a pleasure.