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The Rogue Stitch

Words of wisdom, wit, and whatever else you need.

Tuesday, March 10, 2009

From the Appellate Division Courthouse:

The Stitch lives, ladies and gentlemen--or should I say lives on as a bona fide esquire instead of a would-be counselor at law.

It took 4 months to find out that I passed the bar. It took 4 more to be formally admitted in New York's 1st Department. A pox on the bureaucracy! Utterly ridiculous. I've heard conflicting numbers, but there are anywhere between 60,000 and 80,000 attorneys in Manhattan. That's like what? 1 out of every 20 people on the street? Your mom didn't go to college; apparently she went to law school. (She was a gunner too.)

It's amusing to see that my last post came right before the test. How things have changed since then. Gone are the proverbial dark clouds that had be blind. New job, new home, new outlook. You can bet your sweet asses, though, that I miss having Fridays off in the winter like no other. 30 days last year at mountain, and I'm still looking for my first tracks of the season. My knees thank me, but I've opened myself up to general taunts on par with those spewed forth by certain Frenchmen looking to fetchez la vache. At least I have an East Coast spring to which I can look forward. Tuckerman's anyone?

Btw, it was Chuck Norris' 69th birthday today. Friends tried to throw him a party, but decided against it--knowing full well that Chuck always has the element of surprise on his side.

Monday, July 28, 2008

From the end of the road:

So tomorrow is the first day of the bar exam. Suffice it to say, I'm tired, gaunt, paler than usual (if that's possible) , sick of sitting in the same chair--reading the same notes--for twelve hours a day, and I can't get "Everybody Hurts" by REM out of my head. Yes, 'tis true what the Upstart Crow said of misery while bombasting out his blank verse: it acquaints a man with strange bed-fellows.

At least I can say that there is no longer a point to studying. I am as prepared as I'll ever be (notwithstanding the likelihood that I'll be taking this thing again in February).

Unfortunately, it only recently came to my attention that the bar review racket....um, I mean course, left the one question I had unanswered.

Where the f*&% is Blackacre?

Wish me luck, people. And if you're the praying type, well throw one of those in there too. I appreciate it.

Friday, July 25, 2008

From Carnegie-Mellon:

If you've been following the headlines today, you might already know that Prof. Randy Pausch has passed away at the age of 47 from pancreatic cancer.

Without saying much more, I hope you all can take an hour out of your day to watch his last lecture (provided below).

It's about achieving your childhood dreams.

Monday, July 21, 2008

From a testing center near you:

Eight days and counting 'til the bar exam, and I for one must say that this state of concurrent dread and excitement is wholly repugnant. The headaches are constant, I haven't had a drink in weeks, sleeping has all of a sudden become an arduous task, and it's f*&%ing hot on the east coast. But soon it will be all over.


At least failing would put me in the good company of JFK, Jr. and HRC, aka the Hill-dogs, aka Not-President, aka the Junior Senator from New York, Hillary Clinton. Yup, she failed the D.C. Bar, but passed in Arkansas. Who would have thought the latter to be an easier ordeal, hmmm?

But enough about failing and stereotypes about the south. I'm over it for the moment.

Some of you may remember I post I did a while back about Snakes McGee and Lacey Boa, a couple of regular jet-setting reptiles who took a Parisian vacation during the whole Snakes on a Plane brouhaha. Their exploits accounted for the highest traffic that the Rogue Stitch has ever seen, thanks to a strategic link placed on the New Line Cinema webpage for the film.

Well, to get to the point, I came across this practice torts question in what seems like a never-ending preparation process for the bar. Hope you enjoy.
Philips, a law enforcement official, was transporting a prisoner on a plane from Hawaii to California to testify in a criminal case. Unknown to those on the plane, an assassin hired to kill the prisoner had bribed an airport baggage handler to sneak a timed-release crate of poisonous snakes into the cargo hold of the plane. Once the crate was triggered to open, the snakes were able to slither into the passener compartment through gaps in the conduits between the crago hold and the passenger compartment. In the ensuing panic caused by the snakes, Philips was struck in the head by a fire extinguisher that another passenger threw at a snake, and suffered a severe concussion.
Philips filed suit against numerous parties, including Jackson, who designed the conduit system on that type of plane. At trial, evidence established that the design for the conduit system that Jackson used has been rejected in the industry because of the danger of pressure loss between the cargo hold and the passenger compartment. An industry-approved design that Jackson could have used would have kept the snakes from getting into the passenger compartment of the plane.
As between Philips and Jackson, which party is likely to prevail?
(A) Philips, because Jackson is strictly liable for designing the conduit system of the plane.
(B) Philips, because of the high degree of care owed to passengers of a common carrier.
(C) Jackson, because the assassin's actions were an unforeseeable intervening force.
(D) Jackson, because Philip was injured by another passenger rather than the snake.

Saturday, July 12, 2008

From the Great Depression:

When I hear the words "bank run," I tend to think of scene quite similar to the one shown above--or at very least the ending to Mary Poppins (which then reminds me of a man with a wooden leg named Smith, but that's neither here nor there). I usually don't associate the phenomenon with this modern age or time.

As it turns out, however, bank runs are still within the realm of possibility in the 21st century. Just take a look at poor IndyMac. The Feds sezied control of the bank this week, citing a massive run on deposits resulting in the second-largest bank failure in U.S. history.

Oh shit.

Hopefully, if you're not worried right now about the economy, you're studying for the bar and completely preoccupied. (And from today's date you should infer that I'm procrastinating by way of this post.) Otherwise, you might want to take a hard look at what's going on around us.

Of course, the irony here is that bank runs sort of operate on drawing attention to precarious financial situations, and the snowball effect that such alarm brings.

Just ask good ol' Chuck Schumer (D-NY) about how this works. He was the one who complained to the FDIC & the OTS about IndyMac's troubles two weeks ago. Since then, depositors have withdrawn $1.3 billion from the bank. Smooth, Chuck, smooth. You gotta love his response, though, to the situation. He blamed the failure on "poor and loose lending practices," as well as insufficient regulation, and told the OTS chairman that he should be "spending less time playing politics and more time doing his job." Snap.

Well, I'm sure Chuck didn't help with the matter. Now I'm just waiting for him to challenge the 21st Amendment and really send us back 90 years. You can bet your sweet ass that I'd turn bootlegger in a heartbeat if Prohibition were to rear its ugly, puritanical head once again.

How much fun would that be?

Postscript. The John Nemeth Bank was organized in 1917. In 1920, it changed its name to the American Union Bank (pictured above). The Superintendent of Banks closed it down on August 5th, 1931.

Friday, July 04, 2008

From the frozen shores of Lake Placid:

I was a mere two months old when Herb Brooks' collegiate squad defeated the mighty Soviets, but I remember it like it was only yesterday....

The year was 1980, and it was a great year in which to be born. (Or maybe not, depending on how you look at things, particularly the impending eight-year reign of Ronald Reagan and the twenty-eight year reign of Robert Mugabe.) MCMLXXX to all you Roman folk out there. Mount Saint Helens blew up. The Empire Strikes Back came out. The Islanders won their first Stanley Cup. And little Azaria Chamberlain disappeared. Who? Um, you remember the catchphrase, "The dingoes ate my baby!" She was the baby--eaten long before Fat Bastard took a liking to the other, other white meat.

So, I bring up the Miracle on Ice because on this day--the Fourth of July--the day on which the Continental Congress dared to adopt the Declaration of Indpendence and challenge the tyranny of the English crown, we should take a moment to reflect on some of our nation's finer moments.
And also because our good friends over at Gorilla vs. Bear have a grat idea: List your favorite record from every year you've been alive.

I admit, it's not an easy task. I'd even say that it's rather imperfect, based on standards of changing tastes, past & present inclinations, and personal experiences. Plus, there were so many good tracks along the way that simply did not have a solid album to really back them up. They, of course, lose out to records I like pretty much the entire way through. This chart should help, btw. Feel free to leave you own list in the comments. Here we go:

1980: Zenyatta Mondatta, The Police
1981: Dirty Deeds Done Dirt Cheap, AC/DC
1982: Thriller, Michael Jackson
1983: Speaking in Tongues, Talking Heads
1984: Stop Making Sense, Talking Heads
1985: Brothers in Arms, Dire Straits
1986: Graceland, Paul Simon
1987: Appetite for Destruction, Guns n' Roses
1988: ... And Justice for All, Metallica
1989: Stone Cold Rhymin', Young MC
1990: People's Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm, A Tribe Called Quest
1991: Nevermind, Nirvana
1992: Blind Melon, Blind Melon
1993: Vs., Pearl Jam
1994: [The Blue Album], Weezer
1995: Frogstomp, Silverchair
1996: No Doy, moe.
1997: Homework, Daft Punk
1998: Bring It On, Gomez
1999: Black on Both Sides, Mos Def
2000: The Mirror Conspiracy, Thievery Corporation
2001: Vocal Studies + Uprock Narratives, Prefuse 73
2002: Quality, Talib Kweli
2003: Evolver, 311
2004: Let it Beast, dj BC
2005: In Case We Die, Architecture in Helsinki
2006: Broken Boy Soldiers, The Raconteurs
2007: Graduation, Kanye West
2008: [Still Undecided] Notables include: Devotion, Beach House; Santogold, Santogold; Rock Ferry, Duffy; Vampire Weekend, Vampire Weekend; Youth Novels, Lykke Li; Attack & Release, The Black Keys

Look, I know the list has its problems. But for brevity's sake, I can't recite a dozen albums for each year. Sacrifices must be made to the vengeful gods of runners-up everywhere. Blood Sugar Sex Magik lost out. So did 40 oz. to Freedom, Ill Communication, Doggystyle, The Chronic, Smash, Good News for People Who Love Bad News, Ready to Die, Hello Nasty, Hard to Earn, The Blueprint. Hell, 1994 could have taken up much of the list on its own. Of course, I'm not happy about the whole situation but that's the way it's gonna be. So chill.

Oh, and I only put Kanye in there because I didn't want him to lose his shit when he finds out that I didn't given College Dropout a nod in '04. Sorry, but it played bridesmaid to Let it Beast.

Tuesday, April 29, 2008

From the back of a Black Cab:

Just thought I'd make a rare update of the Stitch to promote a great site I stumbled upon called The Black Cab Sessions. So far I think there are about 37 chapters to the project, which takes musicians, puts them in the back of a London cab, and records thereafter whatever track they decide to lay down while touring the city.

Credit goes to Gorilla vs. Bear (another site worth checking out) for introducing me to the Sessions and my new favorite Swedish singer Lykke Li (not that I necessarily had an old one). You get "I'm Good, I'm Gone" from her below, as well as Spoon's "I Summon You." Enjoy. I'm out.


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