Bar Exams, Ohio State - Moritz College of Law

Bar Review Diaries: Tornadoes, Facebook Withdrawal, and Hibernation

We’ve reached July, and there is less than a month until the test. Does this qualify as the home stretch? How are our esteemed Bar Review Diarists doing?

Well, they are working hard and doing what they can to not lose their minds (as bar review studiers are perhaps wont to do). Let’s check in with Jeanette, Nathan, and Andrew as they continue stumbling through the bar exam desert….

First, let’s check in with Nathan, who seems to be running into some speed bumps keeping on top of his ideal course schedule:

I was a little ambitious last week when I aimed to finish 18% of the Themis course a week before my birthday. I ended up finishing about a third of that, which now puts me in the position of having to average 25% per week in order to finish the course in time for the bar. First, I think that can be done. Second, I am not sure it needs to be done.

I will be able to finish 25% of the course each week mostly because I took the dramatic step this morning of disabling my Facebook and Netflix accounts. I’ve dabbled in leaving Facebook from time to time but my suspension from Netflix will be particularly severe. I have been a loyal customer for seven consecutive years and these are now the first moments of my adult life that Netflix is not a part of. It doesn’t make me feel good or independent. I’m not any less attached to the computer screen. I’m just sitting here watching videos on a different and less fun part of the internet for the next few weeks.

That is actually pretty weird to think about. I lived with Facebook since I was 18. I’m not going to think about that anymore, because it gives me the howling fantods. But back to the ways in which Nathan is trying hard to keep that study train rolling….

My other major feeling this week is that I probably will have to break from the Themis schedule and start learning on my own at some point in the next few weeks. While it’s always great to see yourself making progress on the percentage bar, at some point, it’s not a perfect proxy for how much I’m actually learning. It’s really much too easy to open up an outline I’m assigned to read and click “Finished” before I even glance at it. In the next few weeks, I need to take more ownership of my own progress and find a better way to both accomplish and account for it.

Jeanette has been jet-setting around the country, but she’s back home now, and she’s ready to lock herself in the study cave until the end of the month:

I’m back home in Southern California and safely away from that crazy Chicago weather. Over the past two weeks, there has been extreme heat, thunderstorms, rain, a tornado and even hail. I told my mother about this, and she noted that Chicago is “experiencing the end times” and wondered if my sister was getting enough fresh foods in her diet (she was worried that my sister would not be able to walk across the street to the grocery store due to extreme weather). It was great seeing old friends, and I even managed to find time to help out at a summer camp. Also, the Supreme Court decided to uphold the Affordable Care Act while I was in Chicago, and having lively discussions about it was certainly an interesting way to review Constitutional Law.

Yep, there is nothing better to remind you of your mortality than regularly scheduled Armageddon weather in the Midwest.

But even during this time, I’ve made sure to take a few hours out of each day to watch the lectures and read through the outlines. My goal was to finish all of the substantive learning by July 4th so I can spend the remaining 20 days taking practice tests. Now that I’ve gotten the travelbug out of my system, it’s time to buckle down and start cramming.

This morning, I went to the grocery store earlier today to stock up on the essentials — protein bars, 2 pounds of ground coffee, 25 bags of sour patch kids, a gallon of milk and a giant bag of frosting-coated animal crackers. I told my mother to occasionally slip me some fruit, vegetables, and meat when I start to look pale. I’ve said my goodbyes to my friends, and I am ready to sit in a cave for the next few weeks. Can’t wait until July 26th…

Keep reading to see Andrew’s analysis of recent current events. I think his brain might be a little addled from studying for the bar too hard….

(hidden for your protection)

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