Sunday, September 6, 2009

Where dreaming (and not paying attention in class) pays off

In college, there were very few students in each of my classes who brought their laptops to class. It wasn't necessary to type your notes. The lectures were repetitive/slow/unimportant enough that you could easily make do with jotting down the big issues on a notepad and then get back to your crossword puzzle in the Daily Evergreen (this is all hypothetical, understand).

But in law school, everyone brings their laptop to every class. This is because a) we are told to do so at orientation, and b) because the lectures are dizzyingly-paced and the casebooks basically useless at exam time. But what really drove me to schlep my computer to and from school on the bus each day was the fact that everyone else was doing it, and if I didn't, then I was probably doing something wrong. I find fear and intimidation to be excellent motivators.

The difficulty was never in having the laptop with me in class. It was in having internet access in class. And because I've always been a back-row kid, I could see that 99% of my peers were taking full advantage of that access. Everyone had a favorite site: Facebook; MSNBC; Youtube (on mute - what's the point?); Zappos.

Mine was Zillow.

Oh, how I loved house shopping. Years before I had any inkling that we would be able to even dream about thinking about being able to afford one of our own, I still shopped. I shopped my way from torts through professional responsibility and back again. And then I shopped some more.

I found no less than 10 this-is-the-one-and-no-other-will-ever-hold-a-candle-to-it dream houses. Big brick manors on the South Hill, cute bungelows in the Valley, rambling farmhouses on acreage in Otis Orchards, it didn't matter. I wanted one of each.

I'm pretty sure this obsession stems from that desire I have to create. I love to make things. And to have a house to make beautiful, to have space to work on my projects and then display them, oh, my heart still beats faster when I think back to the anticipation.

And then, by the end of our time in Seattle, we learned that:

working + saving + (scrimping - still having way too much fun in a very awesome city) =

Heck yeah.

Love, J

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