Fashion, Fashion Is Fun, Law Schools

How Long Does It Take A Law Student To Buy A Suit?

Tell me again how the third year of law school is anything other than a gigantic waste of time? The 3Ls got back to campus just a few days ago, but already their thoughts have turned to getting out and moving on with their lives. And they’re right to do so; 3L year is a giant holding pattern between now and taking the bar exam.

At one top school, 3Ls are already using their listserv to talk — well, bitch — about graduation. They’re annoyed by their school’s ticket policy for commencement. I’d say they were counting their chickens before they hatched, but I don’t even know what kind of awesome, ATL-worthy story could get a 3L kicked out before graduation.

One kid is even trying to plan his wardrobe for the big day. He’s not a “clothes horse,” though. Apparently, he’s just a guy who can’t figure out how to get to a Men’s Wearhouse between now and May…

In fairness, the school we’re talking about is Cornell Law School, in Ithaca, New York. There is no Men’s Wearhouse in Ithaca. For all I know, all Cornell law students have their suits made by Ol’ Ma Hatcher, who lives in a little shack near the Finger Lakes and has a sewing machine that never stops.

I’m just kidding, Cornell students. Please don’t jump off of anything. But you have to admit this email from one of your guys is a little funny:

Looking for a suit for graduation. I’ll need it from May 3rd until May 13th, but I’ll only be using it for one day. Willing to pay $150 plus cost of dry cleaning as well as normal wear and tear. Any color is fine.

Thanks, guys.

First let me do my knee-jerk liberal check: is this guy so poor that he can’t afford a suit and is asking for a little help? NO. CLEARLY NOT. He’s willing to pay $150 plus dry cleaning. You can get a suit for that. Especially an “any color” suit.

So instead we’re dealing with a grown-ass man who is about to graduate from law school who doesn’t own a suit and doesn’t intend to purchase one before graduation, eight months from now. I agree with the Cornell student who responded on the listserv: “Grow up, dude.” Honestly, if you are going to be the dude who doesn’t own a suit, go balls out and don’t wear a suit to graduation. Do you. But if you are going to go the conformist route, you gotta own it, you can’t rent it for a day.

Moving on, Cornell is apparently against its students engaging in free-market enterprise. From a tipster:

Students are limited to 4 guests [for convocation], and after announcing this today (this is not a new policy, it’s always been 4 guests), people started offering to buy and sell tickets on our listserv. This prompted the school to send out an e-mail stating tickets cannot be sold or transferred. In sum, our 54k a year gets us 4 use em or lose em tickets to our own convocation. No selling, no giving away, nothing.

What the hell is Cornell worried about? Do they think students are going to scalp their tickets to people trying to “crash” the Cornell Law convocation? I promise you, nobody has ever done that, ever.

What happens with these things is that some people graduating from law school will represent the last, best hope of a huge family who has barely sent anybody to college, while some graduating students will be the disappointment of a small family filled with doctors.

I’m not overly concerned with Cornell preventing the kids who want to sell from making an extra buck. I am concerned with Cornell not giving students with big families the ability to let them come see whatever event they want to see. All joking aside, for some people and their families, graduating from law school — to say nothing of an Ivy League law school — is a big deal. And nobody does it alone. Graduation isn’t just about the student, it’s all about the families who have sacrificed and supported and put that student in a position to succeed.

If you’ve got five people who want to come and celebrate their achievement of getting your ass through law school, and somebody is willing to sell you their spare ticket, Cornell should allow that transaction to take place, even if it means that the kid who can’t be bothered to buy a suit ends up being able to borrow one from the kid who really needs extra tickets.

UPDATE (9/9/2013): It seems that the graduation suit email was a parody, although based on an actual email seeking a suit. Here’s a representative message from a tipster:

In fairness, the suit e-mail was a parody in response to the following (actual) message from a 2L:

“I need to borrow a black suit from about October 10 – October 14. If there is any tall, thin person who could hook me up, that would be awesome. I’d only be wearing it one day. Willing to pay $50 + cost of dry cleaning.”

Pretty sure you could buy a suit for $50 plus dry cleaning as well….

(hidden for your protection)

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