IU Maurer

When I got to law school, I thought it would be “College II.” I was good at college. I had figured out how to drink the maximum amount while doing the least amount of work without hurting my transcript.

I don’t mean the sad, old-man drinking that you do in your basement while telling your wife you’re changing a light bulb to get five minutes of blessed peace. I mean the exciting, outside drinking. With friends, and games. In college, I engaged in drinking as a sport, instead of drinking as a medication.

In retrospect, that line between college drinking and adult drinking was crossed sometime during law school. I didn’t recognize it at the time. I played a lot of beer pong in law school and even as an associate. But really, the innocence of drinking “for fun” was lost in law school, and replaced by drinking “professionally.”

And so I look at this “challenge map” for a bar crawl at a respected law school — the bawdy, ridiculous, tempting-the-fates-of-alcohol-poisoning bar crawl challenge — and I think, “Don’t these kids know that they’re already dead?”

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Could a K-Mart manager run your law school?

The Association of American Law Schools’ annual conference starts today. I’ll be there tomorrow and I’ll be speaking there on Saturday about law school rankings.

AALS is a giant mixer for law school deans. I don’t like to go, because I don’t like being yelled at or assaulted, but it’s a great conference. You’ve got to remember, law deans are not afraid of the American Bar Association or the Department of Education. The so-called “regulators” of legal education don’t do much actual regulating of established programs. Instead, law deans are afraid of their faculties. Law deans are afraid of law faculties the way kings are afraid of their generals.

Deans are not afraid of their students. Student happiness has nothing to do with whether law deans get to keep their jobs. I don’t expect that a new law dean will care about an impolite greeting from one of his new students. But still, if I see this guy at AALS I’m going to give him a hug….

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