When I tell people I’m majoring in government (which I almost always immediately follow up with “political science”), the next question is almost invariably whether I plan to attend law school. It was never something I had thought about growing up. The only reason I’ve ever considered it since starting college was when someone tried to tell me I ought to try it — my mom, my husband, my co-workers, my uncles, my professors, my in-laws, even my classmates who have seen me in law-related courses.
I’ve taken civil liberties, law and sex, New Mexico law, and I was the graduate assistant for the LSAT prep course, judicial process, and the Supreme Court. I have had heavy exposure to basic legal studies, and to be honest… I have hated all of them.
It is not because I don’t think law is interesting or that it has some abhorrent quality. It’s because I genuinely struggle with it. Whereas my classmates have a passion for the law, and while law is a huge part of government, the study of legalities and their minute details genuinely has never clicked in my head.
Some people can’t spell. Others will never understand a second language. Many people genuinely do not understand fractions, and others simply cannot remember the basic rules of chemistry. Me? It’s law.
I wish I could tell you what it is I don’t get about law. For all my exposure to it, for all those terms I memorized, I still couldn’t say the concepts that are hanging me up. If I knew what they were, then I wouldn’t have this problem.
The hardest part of it all is that my classmates in the only class I have all eat this stuff right up. And my favorite (and only, currently) professor does, too. In a graduate class about the presidency, conversation has devolved on a regular basis to cases I’ve never heard of, the rolling of eyes on concepts I don’t understand, and assumptions that we all get it. It’s been extremely frustrating for me, and I feel like I only have myself to blame for it. I’m inclined to get angry at everyone else about it, but it’s not their fault I don’t get it… it’s just that the class isn’t necessarily about law. It’s about the presidency.
I just wish I could keep up… but there’s something not clicking. I’ve never felt more idiotic than I do now, in my 19th consecutive year of school. They say the older you get, the less you know. I feel like I am finally understanding, and it is frustrating to all hell.
“Essentially we’re saying, ‘Thank you very much for the glass ceiling, we’ve cracked it, but there’s not enough air out there, so I don’t want to go.’”—France’s Minister of Finance Christine Lagarde, the highest ranking woman in France’s government, on the fact that women have little incentive to leave the home after starting a family. I think we see this in the U.S. and many other developed nations, as well. Thank you, New York Times.
A little over a week ago, I made a list of all the things we’d been doing. Well, here are the continuing adventures.
Thursday afternoon/evening: class with Dr. Baker. It was about law and I had little to say. Then two meetings- Pi Sigma Alpha and Lobbying Committee.
Friday morning: Hike at Aguirre Springs with a bottle of wine in a wine skin. A beautiful hike that resulted in a great set of photos.
Friday afternoon: A bit of shopping!
Friday evening: Kathy arrives in Las Cruces and we drink one of four bottles of wine she brought. Then the four of us, plus Katie, go to St. Clair’s Winery and Bistro and share two bottles.
Friday night: We return back home and polish off three more bottles of wine. Bottle count for the day: seven! After Joe and Katie go to bed, Kathy, Zack, and I went on a walk around the neighborhood. Of note, we laid down in the street, and I somehow ended up with a splinter in my foot.
Saturday morning: hangover. Retracing steps from our walk the night before with Kathy.
Saturday afternoon: work at Starbucks.
Saturday evening: still hungover! Stopped by Caliche’s, played pinochle, and Joe got the splinter out of my foot.
Sunday mid-day: lunch at Si Senor’s (so that we could redeem it in Zack’s eyes) and feeding ducks at the NMSU duck pond.
Sunday afternoon: corn maze! Zack wandered off and so was proclaimed the golden snitch. Four of us split into two teams and the losers had to buy the winners Starbucks. Joe and I won. Then we hopped on a hay ride and went into a pumpkin patch, where we found some huge gourds.
Sunday evening: drive to Alamogordo and then up to Cloudcroft to stargaze. Unbelievably beautiful.
Monday: Carlsbad Caverns! The drive back was eventful too: the accelerator in my mom’s car (which we were borrowing) stuck when I pressed down hard to pass someone. Joe had to reach over and pull it up. I did not drive home, Joe did. And yes, the car is a Toyota.
Monday evening: dinner with the Gomolaks, followed by Apples to Apples.
Tuesday: lunch at Zeffiro’s. Get called in to work earlier than planned; and so, I got to come home earlier than planned. The boys made steak and sangria for us!
Wednesday morning: walked around Old Mesilla with Zack.
Wednesday afternoon: Vicky Christina Barcelona and beer. Enjoyed an afternoon chat- it was like tea time, except with beer. Beer time.
Thursday morning: Take Joe to the airport for him to leave for Utah.
Thursday afternoon: Lunch with Katie and Zack. Then class, boo.
Thursday evening: De La Vega’s for beer and bourbon with Zack and Jacob. Much happiness. Katie came to pick us up and drive us home.
Friday morning: hangover. Walk to De La Vega’s from the apartment so that we can go to International Delights in my car.
Friday afternoon: International Delights in the sunlight! Watched The Social Network, which ultimately I didn’t like. It put me in a melancholic mood the rest of the day.
Friday evening: Jacob comes over, and Zack shows him how to make curry (alu gobi). We drink a couple beers each and watch The Darjeeling Limited, which was way better than the movie earlier that day but definitely not upbeat.
Saturday morning: breakfast at Break an Egg. Drove Zack to the airport early so I could be at work on time.
Sadly, my guests are gone now and it’s back to the real world. Poop. Also, as you may have noticed, we drank far too much, far too often over these two weeks. I ended up not feeling well yesterday.
That being said, I enjoyed myself immensely and I loved my little group of friends (Joe, Kathy, Katie, and Zack) for these two weeks!
In the past week I’ve done so much, I think it would be easy to forget some of it. So I’m going to make a list.
Saturday night: Split four pitchers of beer amongst 3.5 drinkers, including my husband, my brother, and my brother-in-law at High Desert Brewery.
Sunday morning: Had brunch at Double Eagle Restaurant with hubby, sister, brother-in-law, and two friends.
Sunday evening: The Albuquerque International Balloon Fiesta’s Balloon Glow with hubby, brother-in-law, and good friend Kathy.
Sunday night: Pseudo-mini-pub crawl with the same three previously mentioned in Nob Hill in Albuquerque.
Monday morning: Rio Grande Bio Park (Zoo, Botanic Gardens, and Aquarium) with husband and brother-in-law.
Monday afternoon: Santa Fe’s plaza and the Cathedral of St. Francis.
Monday evening: Mesa hike in Los Alamos.
Monday night: Dinner at Zia Diner in Santa Fe.
Tuesday morning: Very Large Array (telescopes from the movie “Contact”) with husband and brother-in-law.
Tuesday mid-day: Lunch with old friends in Socorro.
Tuesday evening: Work at Starbucks.
Wednesday: Sleep in; drive to Alamogordo and then Cloudcroft with brother-in-law. Then car broke down while in the touristy section of Cloudcroft. Grabbed a couple brewskies each while we waited on a car diagnosis. After no immediate problem found with car, it starts again, and we go on the Rim Trail hike. Then back home to Las Cruces.
Wednesday evening: Brother-in-law and husband make us flamenco eggs for dinner.
Wednesday night: Stargazing by “A” mountain.
Thursday morning: Work at Starbucks.
From here until Saturday night, I’m looking at at least one class period, our first Lobbying Committee meeting, having Kathy visit tomorrow, and working Saturday afternoon right before the NMSU/UNM rivalry game (which we’ll probably ditch and go to the corn maze for that evening). Ah, life. I love having guests in town… especially fun ones.
Anybody with a camera feels like this song describes them at some point. Sometimes I have to remind myself, as I did yesterday, “Today I finally overcame / trying to fit the world inside a picture frame”. Sometimes I forget I’m seeing something amazing happen with my own two eyes, but then I put a camera between me and it. Good luck to all you photographers and artists out there on that score.