One For The Money. Literally.

13 05 2010

My first year of law school has come and gone. You’d think that after four years of high school and four years of college, I’d get used to how fast a school year can move. In some ways, that first walk into Boyd Law last fall seems like it could have been last month. On the other, so much has happened in the last 9 months that Orientation Week seems like a lifetime ago. A year of law school feels like two years of undergraduate thanks to all the work that goes into it. I’ve read more this year than my last two years combined. (And Dad, if you’re reading this, that’s because I wasn’t assigned as much in the last two years, NOT because I wasn’t doing the work.).

A lot has happened this year. Hawks Nest going into full-swing, Hawkapalooza, the amazing football season, the Orange Bowl, getting to know all my fellow law school students. And that’s just a start. It was definitely a hell of a school year.

So what have I learned? Adverse possession, standards of negligence, affirmative defenses, Miranda rights, Rule 12(b)(6)? They’re all great and will undoubtedly be useful in my professional career. What did I really learn? I learned that I could do it.

Less than 200 people were accepted to Iowa Law. The fact that I was one of the lucky 200 should’ve instilled confidence in me. But somewhere along the line, I lost it. Law school started to scare me, started to intimidate me. I’m not the type to back down from a challenge, and law school getting to me definitely rattled my cage. Of course, a slew of personal life issues played into too. But after the first semester, I needed to find my swagger again.

Luckily, I did. Second semester put me right back on my feet. I enjoyed the classes more, got to know my classmates better, and enjoyed success in extracurriculars. Second semester helped me understand that I will be alright. I can handle law school. My grades may not always be in the top of my class, but I know I’ve got the skill-set, personality and intangibles to succeed outside the classroom. The field of law is born in the classroom, but it is not lived there. I applaud my classmates that stick their nose in a casebook 10 hours a day, they have a deity-like work ethic that will carry them places. But if it comes down to me being able to get straight A’s or me being able to sway a room full of people to think how I want them to, I’ll take the courtroom skills before the good-looking transcripts. I’d love to have both, and will try my hardest to succeed on both sides, but I know where my strengths are.

This appreciation of where I am makes me very excited for my 2L year. I’m enrolled in classes I am actually excited about, and am hoping to be involved in a legal journal to brush up my skills. Coupling that with the great places Hawks Nest will be going this year, and an exciting athletic scene at Iowa, next year is looking to be one of the best yet.


I really don’t like justNorthwestern

1 05 2010

The following are football-related links you should peruse. For an accurate depiction of my hate for justNorthwestern University (the annoying little brother of the Big Ten), read the first two links and laugh your ass off.

Big Ten-ageddon! Expansion Imminent?

21 04 2010

First, some Iowa news! The Cedar Rapids Gazette takes a look at Iowa’s O-line following the Spring Scrimmage, and gives a position-by-position summary of the team.

Now, on to BIG TEN EXPANSION! There is a BCS meeting this week in Scottsdale, AZ. Everyone is keeping a close eye on proceedings, as Big Ten Comish Jim Delaney is expected to talk to the press about expansion for the first time in awhile. I’m not expecting any actual Big Ten expansion announcements, but we may get some more info. Here are some links to get you up to speed!

Big Willie Style

21 04 2010

There are a couple casting notes about Will Smith in the news day. First, he has apparently indicated to Martin Lawrence and Michael Bay that he is all aboard if they push to make Bad Boys III. Second, as the photo above suggests, Smith has signed on for Men in Black III, or MIIIB.

Personally, I am all for Smith returning to these two franchises. Bad Boys was a break-out hit for Smith and Lawrence. It definitely opened the door for Smith’s transition from the Fresh Prince of Bel Air to a certified heart-throb action hero. Men In Black added to this status and showed he could chew up comedic turns, even when sharing the screen with big names like Tommy Lee Jones.

Bad Boys II was all sorts of ridiculous, and I loved every second of it. Reportedly, Smith and Lawrence had so much fun making the over-the-top sequel that they called up the studio and told them they wanted to do another. Of course, the price issue is a little different nowadays. Michael Bay is no longer the guy who used to shoot Victoria Secret commercials. Now, Bay’s pumping out films that rack up hundreds of millions of dollars at the box office (see Transformers 1 & 2). Likewise, Smith is certified box-office gold. He’s had blockbuster after blockbuster, and has fleshed out his serious acting chops with films like Ali, Pursuit of Happyness and Seven Pounds. He is easily the most bankable star in Hollywood right now.

I’m guessing producer Jerry Bruckheimer will be able to wrangle the stars, director and studio funding to get a third installment rolling. The traction MIIIB is getting will likely play a role in this process.

Speaking of MIIIB. I’m quite surprised to learn that the movie already has a director and the principal actors on board. A few weeks back, it came up that Smith was at a fork in the road. He could come on board for MIIB three with director Barry Sonnenfeld (director of both MIB and MIIB), or he could star in The City That Sailed, a film set up at his own production company. The summary for The City That Sailed is as follows: “A girl, who moves to London, finds magic candles that make her wishes comes true, with unintended consequences: The island of Manhattan separates from the continent and floats toward England, bringing her dad ever closer.”

Personally, I’m more interested in MIIIB. Here’s hoping he’s to do both that and Bad Boys 3 in the near future.

Spring Football Makes Me Happy

20 04 2010

It was a beautiful day in Iowa City this last Saturday. The sky was blue and the sun was shining down on Kinnick Stadium as fans flooded in to watch the annual Spring Practice/Scrimmage. It was great to be back in Kinnick again after a 5 month drought, and even better to see Hawkeye Football taking the field! To sate your appetite for Hawkeye Football, here are some links:

  • Here are some quick hits from Big Ten Blogger Adam Rittenburg’s visit to Iowa this spring
  • Here is a recap of the Spring Practice/Scrimmage, courtesy of the Iowa City Press-Citizen
  • The Cedar Rapids Gazette has a good look at senior OLB Jeff Tarpinian, heir apparent to the Iowa Linebacker throne
  • Also on ESPN’s Big Ten Blog is an interview with Iowa QB Ricky “The Warrior Patriot” Stanzi. America’s #1, Love it or leave it. An interview with Coach Kirk Ferentz can be found here
  • More love to ESPN and Rittenburg, here is a great article looking back on the roller coaster 2009 season, and looking forward to 2010
  • Hawkeye fans better get ready to hear a lot about DE Adrian Clayborn this year. His star is on the rise, but he says he’s up for the challenge

Weird, more football news

14 03 2010

I know, I know, I post a lot of football news. Sorry, but it’s a huge interest of mine. I’m going to focus on getting more substantive posts up on here soon. But until then, here’s a round-up!

  • This article suggests that if Notre Dame wants into the Big Ten, they are going to have to do the romancing. The Big Ten will be wary of tendering an offer to ND after the sour way things have gone in the past.
  • This fairly indepth article breaks down what each current Big Ten team is worth to the conference. It’s lengthy and technical, but very informative.
  • This article gives an update on Iowa’s WR and TE position situation for next fall. I apologize for the horrible sentence structure in the article, but it is the Cedar Rapids Gazette.

Training Update: Pain and Frustration

7 03 2010

Those of you have check out the Marathon tab on the SoapBox know that I have been training these past few months to get back in shape and attempt a marathon in the fall. I figured I’d give updates on the main page every once in awhile to give a little insight beyond the information I provide elsewhere.

Training was going pretty good up until about two weeks ago. Up until then, I was running 3-5 times a week, usually 3 miles at a time with a few longer runs. I did my running at the university’s tennis complex, which is a short drive from my house. The complex was built for the tennis team, and to have an indoor turf area, but they also have a gym area with cardio machines and free weights, which students can use if they have a recreation pass. I bought a pass after coming back from christmas break, because I knew I wouldn’t be too motivated to go running in the sub-zero weather of Iowa in January.

Everything was going fine until about two weeks ago, when the constant running on a treadmill started to have an adverse affect on my body. Previously, I had always been an outdoor runner. I felt like I pushed myself more when I ran outdoors, and it wasn’t as easy to become bored. The weeks upon weeks of the flat, unforgiving treadmill didn’t help my knees or my shins. I started to get shin splints every time I ran. For those of you who haven’t experienced shin splints, they are excruciating. After a run, it feels like someone is squeezing both sides of your shin bone and attempting to pull it off your leg. It makes it painful to put any weight on your legs, even to walk.

For the first week of my shin splints nightmare, I just kept running. It would be painful for the first half-mile or so, and then my legs would kind of numb out until I was done with my run. But then, as soon as I hopped off the treadmill, the splints would come back and I’d limp out to my car so I could drive home and pop some ibuprofen. I thought that I could just run through the pain, that it would eventually go away. And, I knew that soon it’d be warm enough for me to take my training outdoors, where the splints would hopefully disappear.

Finally, this past Thursday, the temperature was nearly 40 degrees, and I got ready for my first outdoor run of 2010. I started out on a 3 mile route, a simple loop that would take me down Benton Street to Mormon Trek, then down Mormon to Melrose, where I could loop back to Benton on Sunset and be right back home. I’d run the route several times in the fall of 2009, and knew it had a good mix of hills, which I thought would be a pleasant change from the flat monotony of a treadmill.

I had some brief pain in my legs as I started out, but it quickly subsided, and I thought I was in luck. However, about a mile and a half into the run (right near the top of the Mormon Treak hill), my legs started to cramp up and hurt. I stopped at the top of the hill to stretch out my legs. I don’t ever normally stop in the middle of the run, I usually just convince myself to run through it. But the pain was pretty bad, so I thought stretching could ease it enough to get me through the 3 miles. After stretching I started down the hill toward Melrose and realized my mistake. My brief stop had been enough for my body to think I was done running, and the shin splints hit. They were worse than ever, and I had to stop moving after only about 50 feet. I kept walking, but the pain gripped my legs so hard that I couldn’t walk very quickly at all. I shuffled down to the bottom of the hill, knowing that I was already halfway through the loop and had to keep moving forward to get home. I tried a few strides at a slow jog, but it was too much and I winced to halt. Swallowing my pride, I knew that all I could do was limp the last mile home.

It was insanely painful and incredibly embarrassing, but I limped my way up Melrose to Sunset, then back down to Benton. It took me a good 45 minutes to go that 1 mile, mostly because the sidewalks on Melrose were completely covered in leftover snow and ice. The last thing I wanted to do was slip and fall on my already unsteady legs, so it was slow-going through those areas.

I haven’t been running since then. Friday was my scheduled day off from the gym, so I rested my legs. Saturday, I was supposed to do a 5 mile run, but I couldn’t talk myself into, and had a packed schedule to boot. I’ve decided to go back to the gym on Monday, and to do my cardio work on an elliptical instead of a treadmill. The elliptical machines are easier on your legs, so I’m hoping using them will allow me to rest my legs a bit before trying to run outdoors again. Next week, I travel to Mexico for Spring Break with my family. I’m hoping that after a week of lighter workouts, I’ll be able to get back to running in Mexico, but I might take that week to shift my workout focus towards some light lifting and swimming. It’s kind of touch-and-go right now, but I’m hoping that when I get back from spring break, I can get over these shin splints and get back into a steady running routine.