This is a common question for evening students who hold down full-time jobs while going to law school. Particularly in interviews. My friend (and sometime FTH commenter) Jorge suggested I share the real secret behind the ability of evening law students to balance all that they do. Pulling the curtain back on our secrets might be helpful to those looking for ways to cope with totally unreasonable demands made by bosses, school, friends, and family.
Of course, the public answer – the only answer we can typically give you non-evening law students – is a mix of:
- “aw shucks” gratitude for (what we think is) a rather flattering compliment (but may actually be genuine wonder over how we actually went insane);
- disbelief over the sheer absurdity that you think we’re balancing anything well;
- genuine eagerness to give your friends and family credit for their support and patience (which is real, invaluable and indispensable); and
- a sense of how you become a slave to your To Do list (everything else, including your concerns about “balance,” falls by the wayside).
But we all know that’s not it. Sure your significant other is a picture of patience and source of support. But what else could it really be? Here, for the first time, I reveal our secrets!
While there any number of factors that contribute to this miraculous feat, there are clearly a few that are most prevalent.
Frankly, many evening law students possess Super Powers. Yes, many evening law students do indeed have super powers that enable them to maintain an inhuman level of focus across their family, professional, and academic commitments. Even though that may sound like snoring on that conference call or coming from that study carrel, it’s actually the inescapable hum of superhero respiration at work – it’s impossible to mute. Much like that finely tuned sportscar sitting next to you at the stoplight.
Also, many evening law students are in fact Mutants. Some–many more than you’d think–are actually X-Men. When they are not working 8 hours per day, attending 11 credit hours of class, editing law journal articles, researching moot court arguments, helping with the Student Bar Association, and spending time with family they are actually keeping you safe from the dangers of Magneto and his vile henchmen who peddle a uniquely dangerous blend of violence and intolerance.
There was also a rumor that many evening law students were actually androids programmed by Richard Posner as a way to experiment with the comparative economic impact of droids and humans on the practice of law. His hypothesis is that while droids may master the daily grind and ingestion of multitudes of facts and rules, they cannot seem to incorporate relevant values and policy arguments to give real meaning to those facts and rules. If correct, his work could really change the future of the law and the long-term prospects for Artificial Intelligence. But that’s just crazy talk. That doesn’t sound like anything he’d do.
And despite the bi-annual sighting of unusual lights, sounds, and figures around law school libraries it has never been confirmed that evening law students are actually descended from a superior alien race of robots that accidentally landed at the North Pole more than century ago and are part of an intergalactic struggle between good and evil.
And, last but not least, we take drugs. Lots of them. Uppers during the semester. Downers over Christmas break. Weed during the summer at Phish and 311 concerts. Whatever we need to get us through. (Don’t tell anyone, but I think some evening law students don’t take drugs to get by in school, but actually because they just like drugs. Shhhh….)