In D.C., law firms that hire summer associates typically pack their summer calenders with a slew of social events. You'll always have a couple of standard dinners at a Partner's house as well as some obligatory happy hours. Beyond that, anything's fair game. My firm also took us on a dinner cruise, to a couple baseball and soccer games, as well as to a few plays, movies, and comedy clubs. All in all a pretty good summer... except that I'm still feeling a bit unfulfilled. Why might you ask? Because I never got to segway.
Segways, in case you're unclear, are two-wheeled, self-balancing, scooter-like contraptions that bury the needle at a zippy 12.5 miles an hour. Everyday in D.C., mobs of tourists sporting "F.B.I. Agent" T-shirts purchased for 2 bucks from some street corner vendor cruise around the city on these speed demons as part of any of a number of organized tour groups.
For one reason or another my firm thought it would be a knee-slapper to make public spectacles of us summers' by setting us up to segway around the city like tourists. The thing is, I was all about it. With a tour group named "Segs in the City" tapped to herd us about, is it really any wonder?
Unfortunately, we got rained out on the night of the big tour. And it didn't just rain, it poured. The IRS building is closed until 2007 because of leakage from the rain that night. So alas, we were forced to reschedule... and what do you know? It rained again. I swear it rained for two damn weeks straight. We could have been in the Pacific Northwest for all we knew. We tried to set another tour up one last time, but the summer was more than half over and there just wasn't another workable tour night.
Why am I so bummed about it? Well... because I don't think I'll ever do a segway tour on my own. Having the firm plan the tour for me gave me an out. I'm not sure I could bring myself to pay for one. That said, I'm now a little fixated on these two-wheeled little gizmos. What's behind this fascination? I'm not quite sure other than to say that I seem to relish being the geek at times. Back in high school I used to show up to disco-skating on Saturday nights in a graduation gown and a Slash wig. The idea of strapping on a bike helmet and dodging sidewalk traffic while running in a pack of segways just sounds like a smashing good time. Apparently, however, this allure isn't universal. A couple of summers' at the firm swore they wouldn't be caught dead on one of these suckers... said they were "morally" opposed. Perhaps they aren't aware of how cool segways have become... from bad-ass Jackie Chan to Elvis-loving Junichiro Koizumi to also-ran John Kerry to the Chicago P.D., everyone seems to be riding these things of late. In fact, George W. even gave one a whirl not too long ago, although for purposes of full disclosure, I should note that he did encounter a bit of trouble (see below).
Which brings me back to my discontent. It's lasted long enough now that I'm wondering if I'm destined to crack at some point and cough up the money for a tour. Or maybe I could just rent one and hit the D.C. streets (and beyond) on my own. I've seen people take these things into office buildings, restaurants, and even the a Senate office building. I'm certain I could handle a segway better than Bush. I'd be a regular old Homer Simpson on the thing..."Fly, Segway, Fly!" (My only problem would be coercing someone into joining me).
Thursday, July 20, 2006
I like to read. Actually, I love to read. This love has instilled in me a corresponding love for books and most things book related. For example, the first pieces of furniture that the wife and I bought after getting married were bookshelves. I can literally wander around a Barnes & Noble or a Borders for hours without losing interest. Get me into a Costco and it's trouble... I usually leave with three or four books I hadn't gone in intending to buy. This compulsion has lead to a rather sizeable book collection. The problem is that while in law school I can't read much of anything not school-related without feeling guilty for all the school-related things I should be reading (...unfortunately for me, surfing the internet isn't as guilt-ridden). This has naturally led to stacks of newly purchased books that sit gathering dust. For instance, this past year I thought it would be interesting to read books by both (Conservative) Justice Antonin Scalia and (Liberal) Justice Stephen Breyer and compare their jurisprudence (I know... I'm a geek). I haven't cracked the spine of either. Last fall, I also purchased, among other books, Joseph Smith: Rough Stone Rolling. While I did flip through a couple of pages during the semester, I didn't start reading it until after finals. Over the Christmas break, I managed to burn through about 200 pages of the hefty, but fascinating biography... and then, once again, school hit. Despite my best efforts, over the next four months I failed to read more than 20-or-so pages. Every time I'd set aside time to sit down and plow through it, I'd have to read back a dozen pages to re-orient myself. Come summer, however, I got back on my game. I finished the Rough Stone by mid-June. My hope was to put a dent into my dust covered stacks this summer, but alas, I've gotten lazy and dug myself a pretty big hole. It's mid-July and I still haven't finished my next book. I'm beginning to doubt that I'll make much headway on those stacks. To motivate myself, I've added a book section to my blog sidebar. I figure this way I might possibly read a little faster in order to avoid the embarrassment of having the world know that I'm currently reading the teenage-girl-coming-of-age bestseller, The Secret Life of Bees. My wife is making me read it... I promise.
Wednesday, July 19, 2006
Friday, July 14, 2006
There is a massive censorship campaign afoot that you should know about. From a McDonald's near Amsterdam to New York's very own John F. Kennedy Airport, certain works of art called "Kisses" are systematically being supressed from public view. Those Kisses already on display are being removed from public view and future plans to install Kisses elsewhere are being canceled. What could be stirring such brazen acts of censorship you ask? Open wide.
Tuesday, July 11, 2006
Monday, July 10, 2006
Our old friend Screech (a.k.a. Dustin Diamond) is in trouble. You see, he had trouble finding work as an actor after his days on Saved By The Bell (surprising?!)... and not wanting to give up the dream, he tried his luck as a stand-up comic. Apparently it hasn't gone so well though. A bank is preparing to foreclose on Diamond's Wisconsin home and, in a last ditch effort to avoid losing the house, he has turned to the internet to try to raise a quick buck. He's hawking "I Paid $15.00 To Save Screeech's House" T-shirts via a website he threw together last month. To drum up a little support for this venture, Diamond made an appearance Howard Stern and was also interviewed by the AP for an article that ran countrywide. His "official" story blames bad credit, rising property tax assessments, and some guy named Arthur Giraldo for his recent run of bad luck. Diamond supposedly had 30 days to pay the $250,000 owed and, by my calculations, his time is short. So the question is... just how big of Saved By The Bell fan are you?
Friday, July 07, 2006
Wednesday, July 05, 2006
Earlier this year, a good friend of mine lamented the demise of MTV over the last 10 years, going from a "cool" place to "watch the latest and greatest music videos" to "the proverbial crap hole of cable television." I say he might feel differently if he lived in
Monday, July 03, 2006
The Washington Post is offering its first annual "Most-Overhyped Celebrity" vote. Polls are open until midnight tonight (July 3rd). Personally, I think K-Fed has it in the bag. Make your voice heard.
Update: The polls are techincally closed with Paris Hilton eeking out a 43% to 37% win over K-Fed.