January 20th Is Quite A Day

January 20, 2010

January 20th has become a special day to me over the past couple of years. Including this year, this date has shaped part of who I am and who I have become. So, for your reading pleasure, here is a little rundown of the past four January 20ths:

January 20, 2007, Israel: If anyone asks me about my experience in Israel, I always start out with the words “life changing,” not only because of my religious connection to the country finally being realized, but for the memories of who I was before and after this trip. Before this trip, I was coming out of a long relationship, and I really had no focus on who my true friends were and what I wanted to get out of college (in fact, I was not even declared as a government major yet). Coming out of this trip, I had a newfound passion for Judaism and for Jews and a true focus of what I wanted to do in the near and far future. In my high school years, Judaism and being friends with Jewish people had been completely ruined for me (i.e. my high school friendships, USY, Bergen County High School of Jewish Studies). I had no interest whatsoever in being apart of that scene. Coming back from Israel, I was refocused on the fact that I was proud of my heritage and realized that there are some pretty cool Jews out there. From that point on, I got involved with the Jewish community and by the time I left college, I pretty much had only religious Jews as friends (go figure). If someone would have told me five years ago who my closest friends would be, I would have called their bluff, and this reformation changed when I entered and left the Holy Land.

January 20, 2008, Italy: Whereas Israel changed who I was as a person, Italy reaffirmed who I was as a person. I loved my experiences in Italy and I came into that situation, not with the mindset I had in Israel (which was to look for a life changing experience that would actually shape the person who I would eventually become), but rather to maximize my “fun time” and just look for classic experiences that would further the lore of Mike (yeah, I said that). In Italy, I continued being a good student, but for the first time in my educational career, I combined it was a brash, loud mouthed personality that resulted in new friends, classic times, and a new mentor. Had I not had that life changing experience in Israel, I probably would not have been so open to going on this trip and creating lasting relationships and memories. But now, I had a new outlook on life, which was to work hard, play hard and be myself around people. Furthermore, I reaffirmed my Jewishness by going out of way to attend synagogue in Rome and Florence (can you say “hot Italian Jewish girls?”).

January 20, 2009, Washington, D.C.: I feel like Robert Langdon in the those Dan Brown novels with the way I’ve traveled the world and had classic experiences (but not near death ones) with the third one coming in Washington, D.C. But here, unlike the newest Dan Brown novel, it did not end in disappointment. If you haven’t read my blog from last year about this experience, click here. Working for CBS for the inauguration of Barack Obama was one of the coolest experiences in my life, and the things I saw and got to do, and the people I got to meet (hellllllooooo Oprah) is something that very few people outside of Katie Couric can say they’ve done. Being about 75 feet from Barack Obama and overlooking the Clintons, the Fords and the elder Bushes is something no one can take away from me and one of the most unique experiences. This entire experience made me more passionate than I was (with working on the Hill and dominating the government school in college) about the government. It was what drove me to law school and what still drives me today. I still get chills thinking about how lucky I was and the long hours I worked over that winter break. I also remember long underwear and no sleep.

January 20, 2010, New York City: Okay, this one is a tad depressing. I go from Israel, to Italy, to the inauguration, to… law school. Bummer. But in actuality, it really isn’t that bad. All four of these experiences have impacted who I am. Law school is just another chapter in my life. Granted, the work sucks. So does the long hours. And so does missing out on the Real World and Jersey Shore. But in the bigger picture, I chose to be here because I want to become a lawyer. It’s what keeps me going through the long hours of reading and studying and finals (and the grades that follow). The fact of the matter is, in two and a half years from this current date, I will be a law school graduate, which is pretty cool (it also means I could potentially be making enough money to buy lots of Playstation 3 games, which is actually the sole reason I decided to come to law school). And worse comes to worst, hopefully by the time I graduate the technology for time machines will be available so I could go back and enjoy better January 20ths.

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Mike’s Preview of ABC’s “The Deep End”

January 15, 2010

In less than a week, ABC will be premiering a new drama called “The Deep End.” This show follows the lives of a couple new associates in a prestigious law firm in Los Angeles (thank you Wikipedia for this information). I’m sure it will be like Grey’s Anatomy, but instead of McDreamy, McSteamy (it is very pathetic that I know these names), and McHandicapped (he’s a new character), they will have funny law names like McTort (seriously, the creators of these shows are fixated on making everyone Irish). There, of course, will be the exaggerated sexual tension and love triangles, squares, pentagons, etc., etc. But if law school and talking to lawyers is telling of what the legal world is really like, this show will be a fantasized version of what real legal life is like. So, I offer you what the real “Deep End” would be like if they wanted to make a factually accurate show.

The first part of this show will be the rivalries. In law school, there is a small percentage of people (analogous to the small percentage of people of Islamic belief who are extremists) who are overly competitive. They think they are awesome, but in actuality everyone thinks they are giant douches. They raise their hand, and answer questions like this: “Well (student looks up into the sky as if getting his answer from god while taking off his glasses in a scholarly manner), if I remember correctly (clearly this student remembers correctly, or else the student would not have answered)…” The student probably does this three times per class and compliments these incredibly elitist and condescending comments with equally elitist and condescending questions.

Furthermore, there is the normal everyday student who, although you might be friendly with, or even consider a friend, clearly has ulterior motives. They say (I don’t know who “They” is. Even Wikipedia didn’t have the answer) law school brings out the worst in people. Some people are incapable of making friends. Some people are incapable of maintaining friendships. So, there really is no drama when it comes to the douchetard from the paragraph before. Nobody wants to hang out with that person (and when you do, you mock this person (or these people), but most likely this person does not pick up on social cues so it is kind of funny). The real drama is the constant questioning of if the people you hang out with are actually your friends or just friendly because they want your sweet outlines.

However, “The Deep End” should not focus on the drama of maintaining friendships or that nonsense because of the fact that most of the day is spent working. I’m sure in a big law firm, there is no time for hook ups in the bathroom, drinking during the week and that kind of nonsense. I’m sure, however, that there will be in-office hook ups in this show. I get it, though. Why would anyone want to watch a show about people working and living real lives? Seriously, the Real World goes against the actual name of its show and just shows the exciting drunken moments (yes, I’ve been watching the Real World over break). I couldn’t imagine why the reality show about law school couldn’t get off the ground. Actually, I could. Unless you’re Tucker Max, law school is boring.

I’m sure the focus of the show will be the in-office romances, just like Grey’s Anatomy does (what? I may or may not have seen a couple of those awful episodes. Seriously, how can a show survive when the main character is clinically depressed all the time. You’re a doctor. You should be happy. Get over yourself, Dr. Grey). But, unlike doctors, there is no room with beds at a law firm. I’m sure there will be partners sleeping with associates or secretaries (damn I should write for this show). This might even be accurate in real life, but when the lawyer’s wife finds out about it, the associate or secretary won’t break out into a long speech about what love is (I’m pretty sure Haddaway and Fat Joe answered this question already anyway). Accordingly, from my experience with law school, there is some sexual tension, but everyone is too involved in school work to even care about that.

So there it is. The real “Deep End.” Now I know what you are thinking: “Will Mike watch this show?” Okay, so you weren’t thinking that, but this is my blog so I make the rules. To answer your question, I am secretly hoping it becomes a sensation within law school and people get together and watch it. I swear. I just can’t wait for those uncomfortable viewing parties where you question if your soda is poisoned.