Log in

No account? Create an account
ONLY 75 MORE TO GO - Seanblog — LiveJournal

> Recent Entries
> Archive
> Friends
> Profile

September 28th, 2010

Previous Entry Share Next Entry
10:21 pm - ONLY 75 MORE TO GO
I've finished the first two days of actual, real, official law school classes. I have 75 left in the quarter. (And, yes, that number did freak me out because when I first wondered how many days I had left, the first voice I heard in my head was Peter Venkman's going, "Only 75 more to go." After I counted out the days remaining in autumn quarter, Dr. Venkman piped up again: "I was just going to say, 'Eight o'clock?'" And to answer your next question: no, my interior monologue does not solely consist of a set of rotating quotes from Ghostbusters. There are other movies in there, too.)

I only have three classes right now:

1) Contorts which is an integrated class that teaches both Torts and Contracts and is taught by a former mathematics professor turned Yale Law grad. He eschews the Socratic method for more traditional lectures that are an exhaustive blend of history, legal application, modern politics and mathematical formulas (not difficult math, mind you; I think he just wanted to show us that when you're a plaintiff's attorney you're going to have to know how to calculate the damages you'll be seeking). One of the many books assigned for this section is The Law of Torts - Examples and Explanations by Joseph Glannon, the primer I started reading this summer; the one that got me excited to start classes. Unfortunately, it also spoiled me. Glannon's book is so breezy and straight-forward that it makes me want to kick my other casebooks in the crotch.

2) Property which is closer to a traditional law class. We have a seating chart and the professor starts each class by randomly calling on people, but a) the UW has pretty much moved on from the Socratic method, most likely because b) so many of the students want to chime in. I actually got in on the act while we were discussing Moore v. The Regents of UCLA. This was a case about a Seattle man suffering from hairy-cell leukemia who was getting treatment at the UCLA Medical Center. His doctors realized that his cells had some rather unique properties and spent several years extracting all sorts of tissue from him including blood, bone marrow, sperm and his entire spleen (in the doctors' defense, they said the splenectomy was necessary to save Mr. Moore's life). The doctors used those samples -- including tissue from the aforementioned spleen -- to create a line of disease-fighting T-cells which were worth up to $3 billion. Moore sued for a portion of the profits claiming that the medical center stole his property, i.e. his body parts. The California Supreme Court said, "Uh, no. You cannot claim that your body is a piece of property." However, the court also said that the doctors should have told Moore what they were doing with his body parts. The parties settled out of court. Moore was so impressed by his lawyers that he became a legal assistant, but died about a year after the case was settled.

Anyway, the discussion in class brought up many hypotheticals, including one that entertained the idea of Moore trying to sell his spleen and other tissues on his own to the highest-bidding medical center. Should he be allowed to do that? "Of course," I said, "He's just exploiting his own body. It's the same thing that models do."

The entire class laughed. All right! I got a laugh!

"Well," the professor replied, "The model is certainly exploiting his or her likeness."

Oof. The whole "likeness" argument was actually what Moore used in his appellate briefing and the state Supreme Court shot it down. I must have sounded like a freshman women's studies major. Remember, this is law school, not writers' group. I'll think thrice about raising my hand again.

In my spare time, I'm reading The Happy Lawyer because apparently lawyers are chronically depressed and I want to nip that in the bud. One quote in the book, ironically, lifted my mood. "Lawyers, as a group, are more introverted, more doubt-ridden [and] less open about their feelings and less inclined to live in the present than most people." I think I might be built for this after all.

Current Music: Christopher Young - "Drag Me To Hell" - Drag Me To Hell Soundtrack (I swear it came up on random)

(Leave a comment)

> Go to Top