Legal Quandary

Tuesday, February 28, 2006

A Little Weather Whining

Is Winter over yet?

I'm tired of being cold all the time. I hate having to wear 2 hooded sweatshirts around the house to stay warm keep from freezing. And having to wear flannel pajamas and socks as I huddle beneath my flannel sheets and down comforter. And that I STILL have cold feet.

I'm a little tired of the electrical shock I get every time I get out of my car or kiss my children. And I could truly do without the skin on my face getting all cracked and flaky.


Monday, February 27, 2006

Just Call Me Auntie Q

So a big congrats to my SiL and BiL on their happy news! Lil Q is already excited about a cousin, even though I'm pretty sure that she has no idea what one is. Though she's also taken up asking for a baby sister lately, so maybe she knows more than she lets on.

I've never really been an aunt. I'm an only child, and although technically, Roundboy's sister and brother both had kids while we were still married, I'm pretty sure we were mostly estranged (or at least strained) by that point. I seem to recall going to at least one baby shower. Anyway, I've never actually gotten to BE an aunt before. Wild. I foresee a purchase of one of these in the semi-near future.

It's kinda nice to have some happy news to report again.

Sunday, February 26, 2006

Hooray for Spring Break!

Hooray for office "just because" barbeques. And for people who are cool enough to go out of their way to invite you even though your husband is out of town. Double hooray for spousal co-workers who are so cool that they invite you to German beer call on Thursday too!

Hooray for girlfriends! Double hooray for girlfriends who come over and bring wine. And let me cook for them. You know - I've never understood why I'm not more popular...all it really takes to be my friend is to bring me wine and let me cook. Who wouldn't want a friend like me??? (On the menu tonight for those who are interested...roasted chicken with cherry orange sauce, brown and wild rice with cranberries and almonds, and green bean casserole (b/c I was craving it). For dessert - chocolate cherry cake with vanilla ice cream.)

It was so nice to spend the evening chatting with someone I was stationed with as a lieutenant! It made me remember how much I liked having military friends, and how small the Air Force really is. Also - number of glasses of wine it took for me to shout out "effing whorebag" at the mention of a particular person's name and the fact that she is now sporting silver oak leaves? Approximately 1.5. Who knew?

Seriously though, I've been kind of mopey all weekend between all the dying that's gone on around here lately, and Mr. Q being out of town. Turns out all I needed to cheer me up was an old friend to talk to, some good food, and half a bottle of wine.

Friday, February 24, 2006

G'Day Mate!*

Mr. Q has arrived safely in Australia. He called from Sydney earlier tonight.

Since I have Spring Break next week, we had debated whether I should go along on this trip. A short notice trip to Germany in January more or less put an end to that debate. I guess it turned out for the best, in light of yesterday.

I didn't want to hang around the house last night and figured that we could all do with a little cheering up, so I took the kids to see Curious George. I'm not sure how I feel about them portraying the Man in the Yellow Hat as a complete idiot. (I always thought of him as the rugged, adventurous type and figured the yellow suit just went along with the bright yellow cover of the book.) I also didn't realize Will Ferrell, Drew Barrymore, Dick Van Dyke, and Eugene Levy provided some of the voices. At any rate, we enjoyed the movie. Especially Lil Q, who was often the only one giggling loudly in the theater.

* apologies to THL for using that particular phrase.

In other Curious George related news, this woman is a complete moron.

Friday Night Videos

Tonight's selection is an amusing little ditty about domestic violence, which results in a conspiracy to commit murder. Had the police and prosecution decided to dig a little deeper, a Battered Spouse Syndrome defense may have been available to Wanda. Mary Anne would likely be screwed though.

Dixie Chicks - Goodbye Earl

Get the video code here.

Please note that this in no way means that I find Domestic Violence amusing. But you have to admit the Dixie Chicks sound downright chipper about it.

Thursday, February 23, 2006

May Heaven be Filled with Fields of Catnip and Sunny Places to Nap

My cat Merlin died this morning. He was pretty healthy up until just a couple of days ago. Then all of a sudden, he just seemed really tired. All he wanted to do was hang out near a heating vent. And then his rear legs didn't seem to want to work right. By last night, he really wasn't moving at all - he'd fallen asleep in the litter box. When I picked him up (and cleaned the litter off him), he just seemed happy to sit on my lap and be petted. EC and I went down this morning, and he was barely breathing. He died about 2 hours later. I had a vet appointment scheduled for later today. :(

I can't wait for law school to be done. I don't think my family can take the mortality rate that seems to have come along with school much longer.

Wednesday, February 22, 2006

Laches Key Kid

Even the most mind-numbing case books occasionally throw in a semi-interesting celebrity case. In honor of our study of Stone v. Williams, 873 F.2d 620 (2nd Cir. 1989) this morning, here's a really short clip of Family Tradition.

Judging by the nature of this case, the lyrics might not be exactly false. (Hank Williams Jr's half sister, born out of wedlock 5 days after Hank Williams, Sr. died, is suing over her share of copyright renewal rights.)

Even so, this song brings back some good memories of one of my Air Force training classes, and always makes me smile.

Country music singers have been a real close family,
but lately some of my kinfolks have disowned a few others and me.
I guess its because I kind of changed my direction.
Lord I guess I went and broke their family tradition.

They get on me and want to know Hank why do you drink?
(To get drunk.)
Why do you roll smoke?
(To get high.)
Why must you live out the songs that you wrote?
(To get laid.)
Over and over everybody makes my predictions.
So if I get stoned, I'm just carrying on
an old family tradition.

I am very proud of my daddy's name
all though his kind of music and mine ain't exactly the same.
Stop and think it over. Put yourself in my position.
If I get stoned and sing all night long its a family tradition.

Saturday, February 18, 2006

Brain Drain

I took EC and one of her friends to the mall today.

4 hours at Aeropostale, Delia's, Old Navy, Brookstone, Gap, Body Shop, and Bath and Body Works.

I'm pretty sure I lost IQ points today.

Friday, February 17, 2006

Friday Night Videos

From one of my all-time favorite bands:

A little tune about a hold-up and the related illegal, and therefore unenforceable, contract.

The Refreshments - Banditos.

Tuesday, February 14, 2006

Happy Valentine's Day!

"Hallmark Holiday" or no, wishing you a happy day in the spirit of love, peace, and friendship.



Monday, February 13, 2006


I'm a little surprised by the result. I would have figured myself as more of a Devil's Food with Chocolate Glaze...and coconut.

You Are a Glazed Donut

Okay, you know that you're plain - and you're cool with that.
You prefer not to let anything distract from your sweetness.
Your appeal is understated yet universal. Everyone digs you.
And in a pinch, you'll probably get eaten.
What Donut Are You?

As seen over at Frequent Citations

Sunday, February 12, 2006

Confection Perplexion*

I baked sugar cookies tonight. The plan was to make enough heart-shaped confections for EC & Lil Q to take some to school, and for Mr. Q to be able to take some to work on Valentine's Day.

I used the same recipe as I did at Christmas. The Christmas cookies were AWESOME. EC and I had a great time decorating them, and they were super yummy. I've always been a little hestitant to make sugar cookies because they always stick to whatever surface I'm cutting them out on, but I solved that problem by using lots of flour. OR SO I THOUGHT.

I didn't have many problems getting them off the Silpat tonight, but I had real issues getting them off the baking trays after I pulled them out of the oven. They stuck to my baking stones. Unusual, but not completely unheard of. They stuck to my "nothing ever sticks to this cookie sheet" cookie sheet. They even stuck to parchment paper! You know there's something wrong when cookies will stick to parchment.

I'm totally bewildered, flummoxed, and nonplussed. I guess it's possible that I was using too MUCH flour tonight - which would explain why some of the cookies had an almost bread-like crust. But I had really good results last time and didn't change anything. The only other thing I can think of is that it snowed yesterday, so maybe the change in humidity is making the difference. Any thoughts?

The only good news to come out of this is that there are lots of broken cookies, which means more for me to eat.

* I know it's not a word. But it should be.

Friday, February 10, 2006

Friday Night Videos

I give you...the theme song for Agency Law:

Depeche Mode: Master and Servant.

* I had to take the code down - you can get it at

I'm thinking there must be appropriate "theme songs" for lots of other law school courses as well. I'm counting on people more clever than myself to help me figure some of them out. (You all know who you are.) The only thing I can think of is "I Shot the Sheriff" for Crim - because it includes both the crime and an affirmative defense or two.

In the meantime - enjoy a little video which I'm sure was never intended to have anything to do with law school.

Also, if anyone can find a working code for the *actual* video to Master and Servant, please let me know. I hear it's much cooler, but all I could get to work was the live version.

Thursday, February 09, 2006


If you stop and look around while getting off the train at, say, Metro Center, you're going to get stepped on. An unpleasant little fact, but a fact nonetheless. And a foreseeable one at that.

Don't look at me like I just ran over your dog.

You stopped. I stepped. I also apologized.

Now MOVE and get over it.

Wednesday, February 08, 2006

A Little Nitpicking

Probably the result of low blood sugar.

Point 1. Law schools - please do a better job of providing space for your students to be able to sit and EAT. It is cold and/or wet in the winter. It's no fun to have to wander around in search of someplace where I can 1) sit, 2) read (ok…read blogs, but it's still reading), and 3) eat. Law students are a notoriously cranky bunch in the best of circumstances - why exacerbate this charming defect?

Point 2. Law students - if you're in one of the few areas in which people can sit, read, and eat, please don't hog the space. At least not during high traffic hours. Laying down across a couch which could be used by 2 people is just bad manners. If you really need a nap - go back to the dorm. Or go to class. Honestly, I don't so much care where you go so long as you vacate that space.

Point 3. Law students - if there's a loose ring of chairs and you have a bag on one of them, this doesn't automatically mean you get to lay claim to all of them. Again, especially during high traffic hours. Also, saying "There's a big group of people sitting here" is technically inaccurate. Unless said group is physically occupying said seats at that very moment or - at a minimum - have backpacks or coats in the area to mark the seats, you would be more correct in saying "There's a big group of people coming." If you wanted to be polite, you could ask if I wouldn't mind moving. Adding the word "please" would be a nice touch.

I Love The Smell of Capitalism in the Morning

I just remembered that today is the annual Starbuck's Shareholders meeting.

Obviously, I won't be attending this year. I went last year, and thought they put on a great show. I had just taken Bus Orgs, so I thought it would be interesting to see what really goes on at a Shareholder's meeting. I was sure it couldn't possibly be as mindnumbing as Bus Orgs made it sound. Happily, I was right!

Turns out, it's kinda like a pep rally to make you feel good about investing your money, with about 15 minutes of actual business thrown in to make it count. Entertainment! All the free (well...we all know it's not actually free) coffee you can suck down! Treats! Goodie bags! And barristas handing out special Shareholder's edition Starbucks cards...something I'm sorry to say we didn't catch onto until the very end.

I don't know how other companies run their meetings, but it's worth investing in Starbucks just to go to the meeting. The stock split last year also didn't hurt...

So, here's to you, Starbucks. I'm drinking my Venti 3-pump extra hot skim (no whip) mocha in solidarity. Now, get out there and sell some coffee!

Sunday, February 05, 2006

Redefining Myself

My buddy Elaine had a quiz up on her site - "What is Your Darkest Secret?" Apparently, my darkest secret is that all my darkest secrets (for both my real name and my alter-ego) are totally lame, so I took this quiz instead.

Legal Quandary --


A dance involving little to no clothing

'How will you be defined in the dictionary?' at

Saturday, February 04, 2006

Captain Quandary Rides Again

Remember how excited I was about getting a job? But how I didn't really say much about where I would be working? Or really give any details about anything?

Well, now I'm ready to fess up.

I was selected for a direct appointment as an Air Force Judge Advocate.

I didn't want to say much more at the time, because the appointment is contingent on 3 things. 1) I have to graduate from law school, 2) I have to pass the bar, and 3) I have to be medically qualified. So those first two are pretty standard - no legal employer really wants someone who doesn't graduate or can't pass the bar, but not many (any?) civilian employers make their offers contingent on passing a physical.

The bottom line is that I took the physical back in November - and failed. Not because anything was really wrong at the time (in fact, if I can toot my own horn, I'd even say I'm in better shape than all but one of the 18 year olds parading around in their underwear with me that day), but because I required a waiver for something that had popped up years ago.

I got word on Friday that my waiver was approved! So, assuming I both graduate and pass the bar, this time next year, I should be attending the Judge Advocate Staff Officer Course. Whe-woo! I never thought I'd be so happy to visit Montgomery, Alabama.

Captain Quandary*

Image Hosted by

Coming to an Unsuspecting Air Force Base Near You ~ 2007.

* Yeah, that's me. Defending justice with my law degree and a cup of coffee in hand. The law degree as proof that I've got it. The coffee because I need it to function.

Friday, February 03, 2006

Did I Miss Something?

Did the popped collar polo shirt come back into style in my short foray out of the country?

I saw someone at school wearing one the other day and figured he 1) was a 1L who just didn't know any better, 2) didn't realize his collar was popped, or 3) was attempting to make an ill-advised fashion statement. Bottom line - I thought it was some kind of mistake.

Then today, I ran to Target and saw that they were advertising their polo shirts with the collar popped.

The urban dictionary suggests that this trend is not likely to be widespread.

One can only hope.

Thursday, February 02, 2006

Some Random Notes to Myself

For future reference and in no particular order.

1. The black suit that was a little on the warm side for a funeral in Indiana in June is NOT appropriate for a funeral in Germany in January. It is COLD in Germany in the winter. For the love of Pete, wear the navy blue suit with pants. Sure, it's not black, but at least you won't be freezing your tushie off. Alternately, buy a new black suit - with pants.

2. Similarly, as cute as those black interview shoes are - also not German winter friendly. Nor are they intended for walking long distances, or for long periods of time. For example, on days when you'll be out and about DC and then staying at school until 9 P.M. Buy some freaking boots to go with the pants suit, and something less about form and more about function for those days you'll be trekking around the city.*

3. Get your bangs trimmed. Not only will it look nicer, but it'll prevent pieces of hair from actually spearing you in the eye(s) whenever the wind blows.

4. Stop schlepping books back in forth when you KNOW you have no actual intent to read them. It only makes your back hurt. Plus, the 80 pound backpack totally doesn't go with your suit.

* A note to shoe makers everywhere - if you could somehow morph my Adidas tennis shoes into a smoking hot pair of black pumps, I would totally buy those. Please also consider making them in a size 10 1/2. Because, despite your salesman's claims to the contrary, the 1/8 inch difference between a 10 1/2 and an 11 really DOES matter. To me, it is the difference between wearing a shoe that fits and wearing one that will 1) give me blisters and 2) go flying if I happen to, say, slip down the stairs of a bus while disembarking, requiring a quick-reflexed gentleman in mess dress to reach out and catch my shoe before it buries itself into a nearby snow bank. Not that anything like that has ever happened to me.

Wednesday, February 01, 2006

So Beautiful

I've found myself wondering lately about whether I really want to keep doing this blogging thing. There are times I enjoy it. Other times it feels like yet one more activity I do badly.

Over the last week or so I've even considered just doing more blog reading and [even] less writing. The last couple of months have been a bit rough, and I find that my sense of humor has dwindling in response. And I guess that's part of the reason I started this in the first place - as an outlet for my quirky and (obviously) funny observations about the world. So, it bothers me when I read my archives and find that some of my posts are not really funny or quirky at all, but tend more toward the mean, snarky, whiny, or downright bitchy. Not that all of those things don't have their place - I just don't think they should dominate.

Then I come across something like this, which totally brought tears to my eyes. And it reminds me of the other reason I started blogging - as a way to interact with smart, funny, and talented people. As a way of expanding my little circle of acquaintance and in hopes that every once in awhile, something I wrote would strike a chord with someone else.

I will keep writing. Who knows - maybe in a week or two I'll emerge out of this little funk. (It'll take me at least that long to catch up on all my reading assignments.) But it might also take me a little longer. In an email to Mr. Q earlier today, I said that I was so tired that I was starting to wonder if there was something wrong with me. And then I remembered...Oh wait...I've traveled 8000 miles in the last 10 days, buried my grandmother, met a Supreme Court justice, gone shopping with my daughter for her first bra, and gone to school.* Maybe I SHOULD be tired.

In the meantime, thank you to people like Shell, Denise, E. Spat, E. McPan, and all the others who have left comments, written posts, or sent emails. I hope you'll bear with me as I get back up to speed.

* I should follow up on at least 2 of these at some point. I'd also love any other suggestions for topics...