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When you get your first acceptance to law school.

When you tell people you’re going to law school.

When people ask you how you’re going to withstand three more years of being a student.

Your family and friends once the semester gets going.

What people don’t tell you about law school.

When people talk about how great they were in undergrad.

When your friends call you and you’re in the library.

Talking to your family mid-semester.

When you console your friend about their law school reputation.

What you want to say about a case when you’re cold-called as a 1L.

When gunners keep going on and on in class.

When you settle in in the library.

When you finally reach your breaking point studying.

8 AMs.

When your last class of the week lets out.

When you bring your friends from home to a law school night out.

When people get a little too unprofessional.

Saturday morning in the library.

Once you understand the curve.

When the professor doesn’t even know what the gunner’s hypo is anymore.

When people invite you to parties during finals.

What you want to say to people when they ask how law school is.

When you try to get ahead with work and then get more.


The morning after your graded memo is due.

Once you’ve handed in your graded memo (and slept).

When people ask you how you’re going to get a job in this job market.

When people say “you’ll figure something out.”

When you see or hear any complaints about college.

When you act like you know what you’re talking about just because you’re in law school.

Getting food delivered to school during finals.

When people ask you if you want to go out during 1L.

Saturday morning.

When you learn about what happened at the bar on Friday night.

When you find your study group.

When someone shares a good outline.

Wait what’s personal jurisdiction again.

When you get sick during finals.

When people expect you to look like a real person during finals.

When people tell you it only gets worse.

When you survive your first semester.

When you get your 1L summer job.

When grades come if you don’t make top 10%.


When journal drafts are due.

When you no longer care about reading for class 2L.


What you want to say when called on as a 2L.

When people tell you anything about studying as 2L.

A new show to distract myself with on Netflix?!

When you somehow formulate a coherent sentence when called on 2L.

When you survive finals 2L.

When you realize everyone hates lawyers.

When you realize how far behind you are in reading.


When people ask you how you are during 3L.

When you get called on as a 3L.

When people ask you to answer their random legal questions.

Class as a 3L.

When professors try to scare you into doing work.

Socializing as a 3L.

When someone mentions negative stereotypes about lawyers and you no longer bother arguing.

When people actually volunteer in class.

Being a 3L in a class with mostly 2Ls.

3Ls in class.

3L as a whole.

When you hear about someone starting law school.

When people remind you you’re almost done.

When you realize how soon you have to take the Bar.

Studying for the Bar Exam.

The Bar Exam.

In sum. TC mark

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But friends don't do that to each other, do they?
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Look, it’s a stick figure running around in the dark with Mickey Mouse ears! How cute is this costume? I can watch this video on loop and not get tired of it! The beginning is especially adorable, when she runs towards the camera. I laughed so much because of how cute it is! TC mark

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We knew
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Like most 18-year-olds adapting to their first year of college, I relished in the freedom that was a lack of parental supervision, three-day weekends, bullshit ‘101’ classes, and the droves of women walking back and forth across campus beneath the San Diego sun, which helped me come to terms with my high school relationship that ended because ‘we were going to different colleges.’ In retrospect, it was my most meaningful relationship and it sucks that it ended that way. I wanted to find that again when I got to college, and for a brief three months of my freshman year, I thought I had, until my now ex-girlfriend said that having a boyfriend made it difficult to make new friends. Although I was crushed at the time and it sounds like she just wanted to sleep around, I’d come to agree that partying with a girl who has a boyfriend is kind of a buzzkill unless you’re already friends with her or the boyfriend.

“Enough of that,” I thought. If it’s casual, inconsequential sex everyone’s having in college, then who am I to offer or request anything more? So I didn’t, and the next three years were hookups and friends-with-benefits because I knew this might be the last time in my life that wearing flip-flops and gym shorts wouldn’t be deal-breaker, and because I thought the casual nature of it all would make my life less complicated, the latter proved to be quite the opposite.

Jealousy is inherent from both ends of this situation: my hearing that she was hooking up with someone else was always a ‘game over,’ and her seeing a tagged picture on my Facebook with another girl or comment on my wall led me to deactivate my account altogether.

Then there were the female booty-calls, a text that would sometimes arrive at midnight on Thursday or Friday saying something like “what are you doinggggg?” which was sketchy if I was already with another girl and way too dramatic if they were at the same party, (I was not in a fraternity, just to clarify). Because even if they didn’t know each other, girls have a freakish sixth sense about those things. There was also the danger that having casual sex within your own social circle could affect how she’s perceived, and the longer it goes on the less sure you are that this is all either of you want.

Before I’m crucified, none of these girls would be considered ‘sluts,’ none of them had boyfriends, I never offered empty promises and they never said, “Wait, before we do this, I need to know that you want something serious to come of it.” I didn’t go home pissed off if a night of drinking with friends didn’t end with sex, I didn’t wait for them to walk-of-shame out of earshot and run through a soccer-tunnel of high-fives because I didn’t associate hook-ups with my identity; I had other things in my life that brought me a less fleeting sense of fulfillment. One-night-stands were the organic end result of connecting with someone on an intimate level, no pun intended.

I spent the last three weeks of my senior year with a classmate who was moving across the country for a job, presenting a clearly established ‘this hookup will end soon’ scenario we both understood. Getting to know her was something else, her strong-willed, ‘no filter’ personality was masking the unease she felt about leaving California, about stepping into the unknown, and I loved making her crack a resistant smile and break into a ‘fuck you for making me laugh at this’-laugh. We went to the beach on the cloudy day before she left so she could run into the freezing Pacific Ocean one last time. And as we said goodbye, I felt my stomach twist in knots for the first time since I said goodbye to my ex. It was a self-reflecting break from reality, like an alcoholic staring at a pile of empty bottles and wondering what they’ve missed out on.

What was it all for? Was the thrill of the chase more satisfying than the potential pain of the demise? Had I reduced the human experience and blunted the emotional ties between love and sex and was it irreparable?

Because that’s not how a man should think, those shame-tinted questions were for women, men — we’re made to believe — aren’t wired for such complexity, especially not in an environment so saturated with potential mates. ‘Potential mates’ and those other evolutionary words we use to rationalize our actions seem to simultaneously debase our humanity, a self-affirmation used to silence a competitive and presumably unwarranted feeling, but for how long?

There’s something strange about being 24 and seeing those friends-with-benefits’ engagement notifications on Facebook; seeing the women whose company I enjoyed for the tangible and intangible now in a committed relationship, wondering if that could’ve been me and why it wasn’t.

College might be the only fraction of our timeline when both men and women can or should engage in that sort of Dionysian debauchery, but the idea of continuing that behavior today isn’t met with the same ambition. I’m not making a moral argument against anyone who continues to do so, nor am I pandering to redeem a guilty conscience, but it felt like a phase. A necessary step in maturity even, and — in a way — I’m lucky. If I hadn’t experienced that adolescent love and happiness that resides in the harmony of companionship, I might’ve never thought to look for it again. TC mark

featured image – Jenny Kristina Nilsson

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1. LOL

This was funny. I laughed, even if it was under my breath or completely inaudible. I laughed. You got a laugh, out loud.

2. lmao

I may not think what you said was literal laugh out loud worthy, but I appreciate and respect you as a human being, my friend. lmao always.


This was LOL worthy, but the volume of my laughter surprised me. As my little fingers tapped my screen to respond to you, I felt compelled to share my spontaneous joy with you, friend. LMAO indeed.

4. lollllll

Am I high right now? Answer y/n.

5. lolz

That would be worthy of a real laugh if I weren’t totally void of all emotion from staring at my computer screen for the past seven hours.

6. lol.

Whatever you said is a big no. Things between us are tenuous. I didn’t include this punctuation for my health. Take note. Something evil this way comes.

7. Lol

I found what you said to be mildly amusing, but irl I did not even smile.

8. ha

Yeah, that would be funny, but it is not the time right now. Did you even listen to what I just said about my life? No, you just said “damn” and then sent me a Buzzfeed post about cats or Twin Peaks or something. Ha. Tight.

9. haha

In real life, I would smile and kind of exhale at you, as if to say, “oh, you!”

10. HAHA


11. hahahahahaha

I smiled, at best. But it was a gracious, appreciative smile, not some jerk-off smirk. I was like, yeah, I feel you, I like you, and I want you to know as demonstrated by my putting two letters together in succession.

12. bahahaahah

We are great friends and you just hit the best of our inside jokes and now I am practically rolling on the floor laughing, but not ROFL, because ROFL doesn’t mean I’m laughing.

13. ha.

Fuck you. Fuck you and fuck what you just said. Lose my number, asshole.

14. HA

Love you. Love what you just said. God, you are such an asshole. I love that we are both total dicks.

15. DEAD

Whatever you just said was so on point and perfect that I may as well been shot dead right this fucking second because nothing is better than what you said and I should die happy.

16. lol’ing


17. aaayyyyy lmao

If before 12PM: damn, what you said was real as hell and I’m planning on laughing and sharing this funny thing you said with others. Anytime after 12PM: I am definitely high/tipsy right now, y/n? Wait, nvm. Not a question. I am def high aaayy lmao!


I am not crying but I would if this were an in-person interaction.



20. haaaaaaaaaaaaaa

The irony or deep twisted sadness or totally expected bummer is real in whatever you said. I am literally hanging my head right now, exhaling through my nose, like “psh, haaaaaaa. Bet.”

21. hehe

Funny, but in such a way that I wouldn’t reblog or retweet or repeat what you said.

22. heh


23. omg

Mildly funny, amusing, shocking, etc. I don’t know. I am typing a response. Stop typing. I am figuring out exactly how funny it is. I don’t know what to do. Stop typing. Omg.

24. omfg

Very shocking, pretty amusing, etc. I AM SHOCKED BUT I LUH U. That, or I am v annoyed with whatever you told me because it is about someone else who is really grrrrrrinding my gears this week, omfg what a stupid expression I hate everything. Lol, tho.

25. omgggggggg

What you said is probably the most offensive or disgusting thing that was also funny and now I’m rethinking my friendship with you, but also kind of not, because you’re my crazy hilarious Chelsea Handler type friend.

26. alol

I just made this up as a way to actually signify, among all these acronyms, the one time I am ACTUALLY laughing out loud FOR REAL I swear I REALLY AM.

27. almao

Eh, I’m still not laughing out loud even though I made this acronym up to signify I am laughing out loud. I suck.

28. rofl

This joke has been done before. Just stop trying. This is a clear sign that this rapport is over. Check, please.

29. lulz

Did I get high AGAIN? Is this a comment thread? Where tf am I?

30. STOP!


31. lmfao

I am bemused. I giggled. I smiled with my face. I might think about this later, as I drift to sleep, and smile to myself like, “damn, lmfao, still.”

32. OMG

YES. What you just said is so much YES. I agree and I am about to throw you a laugh, IRL and possibly with a follow-up acronym.

33. lawwwwl

I’m rotating between tabs and emails and texts and what you just said was related to something I watched two days ago, but I appreciate you and the way you understand my humor.

34. lololololol

This is new information; this video, this idea, this take on something from our past, this piece of amusement that you have shared with me. I am like Jack Skellington, singing “what’s this?!” to our shared comedy.

35. I’m actually laughing

You made me laugh and I did not expect you to do so. No other acronym could convey my joy, my unadulterated laughter. Did we just become best friends? I think I’m in love with you. TC mark

featured image — LOL

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Lust is one of the seven deadly sins or capital sins, whichever you prefer. But I don’t think too many of us in secular or religious spaces really pay attention to lust. We talk about sex and we talk about sexual attraction; we talk about desire and we talk about constraint. But we do not talk about lust even when we have entire industries built around this human weakness; we ignore that there are deep individual struggles that many face that are a matter of not biological or psychological weakness but rather a spiritual one – lust.

But what is lust? Before defining it, it is worth it to know what it isn’t. Lust isn’t sexuality or the acceptance of humans as sexual beings. And lust isn’t the sexual attraction we experience when we desire someone. There is a certain stance among particular (religious) groups that the acceptance of sexuality in humans or the willingness to embrace that sexuality is somehow an offense against God and people. I differ as someone who tries to love both God and people, in all my weakness. Even the lay definition of lust describes it as a “very strong sexual desire” or the like. I disagree. Lust is an overwhelming desire for a human being such that the human is transformed from a subject to an object that is solely meant to give one pleasure.

We all lust. And that is the tragic truth. So much of our sexual desires – which are in and of themselves not bad – get transformed into an unhealthy craving for another’s individual body. So much so that sometimes we begin to see that human being as only their body. And not only do we begin to see the person as only their body, we see that body as something that is meant to satisfy our desire. Even when we may care for the person, our desire takes precedence over their being. But perhaps most dangerously in our lust for other people, we fail to see them as beings without a soul, a heart, a mind. We fail to see them for all they are.

Of the many issues I have with the porn industry as a whole which is so casual in its treatment of people as subjects, in the gaze and in the state in which many people view porn, they fail to see the person as a person. The viewer watches for the purpose of personal satisfaction and in so doing the person becomes the object by which they get their personal satisfaction. What that person is outside of that, whether that person feels and what they feel outside of that instance ceases to matter. Indeed I have lots of theories about how porn affects sexuality including one that proposes it actually diminishes sex between people in real life. Still, the one that makes me saddest is the negation of the entire humanity of persons being gazed at.

Of course the way the individual lusts and seeks pleasure when viewing something exterior is very different from a real, live human being in front of them. Or perhaps not in front of them but a person that exists in their world, and oftentimes in their imagination. They may or may not interact with the person; they may even be in a relationship with the person – romantic or otherwise. And they may even seek to love them; they may even actually love them. But lust is not love, which is of course stating the obvious but it is an obvious truth that needs to be stated.

The difference between the love and lust is what counts so much in expressing authentic sexuality and emotions between persons. Lust seeks the pleasure of self, while love puts the pleasure of the other ahead of one’s self. Lust views the human in the moment as an object; in love, the human is always a subject and is always more than what they are in that moment. Lust ultimately is selfish, while love is selfless. There is no fine line between the two, but rather a bold one. And the soul, the heart, and the mind always know the difference.

When we lust after someone we simply cannot love them the way we often want to; the way they deserve to be loved. And it is already hard enough to love human beings in our human weakness. Lust, I believe, like most deadly sins, also chips away at our own humanity. How can it not? The ways in which we view others become the measurement we use for ourselves – we can and do objectify ourselves.

I propose then that we be more mindful of lust; that we keep ourselves more aware of making that leap from desire, from sexual attraction, to this deadly thing we call lust – this thing that reduces our humanness. At any and all times, but most especially when it is love that we are ultimately trying to cultivate. TC mark

Featured image – Shutterstock

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Fionandshrek's | via Tumblr
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Ladies, you might be surprised to learn that bachelor parties are not always fun. In fact, they can be rather grim. Your fiancé might actually prefer the comforts of your delicate embrace over a wild night of mindless drinking and poorly thought out choices.

I’m sure that seems counterintuitive to most. The point of a bachelor party is to run amok one last time before emotional dependence, moral imperatives, and legal requirements force you to rein it in. No more late nights or “unread” text messages. More importantly, no more secrets. I assume that’s why this noble tradition started, to give men a chance to get every last moronic impulse out of their system before the end times.

In the mind of the average engaged straight male, a bachelor party is supposed to be a lot like The Hangover, except without the omnipresent gunplay (or maybe with, depending how far deep in the American South you are.) It has to be, right? In order to do what society demands of you (i.e., ceasing to do dumb shit after 7:00 PM) you have to engage in a variety of self-indulgent, self-destructive acts and cram it all into one night.

Invariably, disappointment will set in when the threshold of enjoyment is so high. If it’s not the “most insane night of your life,” then it’s a massive failure that can only be corrected if you are unlucky enough to have to get married more than once.

My bachelor party was spent inside a smoke-filled casino on the California/Nevada border. If you’ve never had the pleasure of experiencing a porous, tourist-trap state border, I highly recommend it. Each state puts their best foot forward to express their unique cultural advantages. The California side of the border emphasizes ski resorts, cabin-themed hotels (not actual cabins), and reasonably priced restaurants. The Nevada side is just there to cater to your every lascivious whim. There’s a smattering of casinos, a few ostentatious sports bars, a hookah lounge — which seemed to have a strict policy that required patrons to be wearing backwards visors and cargo shorts at all times — and convenience stores that sells aspirin, large bottles of water, and flip-flops, i.e. everything you need to have a great time in Tahoe.

The casino in question, a delightfully casual spot called Harveys (such a rebellious establishment that they don’t use apostrophes), had a litany of drinking options — bars, in-hotel convenience stores that sold loosies, the deceptive “free drinks” on the casino floor, and my personal favorite: the celebrity-themed nightclub experience. Harveys sports a little joint called Sammy Hagar’s Cabo Wabo Cantina. Spend a few hours with your pals in Cabo Wabo Cantina, and you might get the impression that the human race is going to do just fine because true love is real and everyone is hooking up all the time. Tongues were doing things to other tongues that tongues physically should not be able to do. Some of these make-out sessions I observed looked like they might devolve into a competitive headbutting contest, they were so violent.

The question for the groom-to-be in these situations is, “What am I doing here?” Gymnastic make-outs are not in the cards. Drinking until I black out isn’t as appealing as used to be. The cover band playing 80s metal hits rendered talking impossible. I ended up standing at the bar, sipping a tepid Bud Light from a fucking plastic cup until I decided enough was enough. Sure, that’s probably not what Van Halen frontman Sammy Hagar had in mind when he designed his chain of Cabo Wabo Cantinas. He probably wanted people like me to take off their shirts and hump everything in sight while pausing occasionally to do body shots off a barely legal waitress. Sorry, Sammy. I blew it, brah.

My bachelor party just made me feel lonely. Watching all those drunk maniacs sucking face like they were trying to find a contact lens in someone else’s mouth simply highlights the fact that most people who don’t have to hunt for their food use most of their free time trying to mate. We’re constantly grasping for affection in any way we can get it. It doesn’t matter if it’s in a shitty casino bar, in the back of a mini-van, or in the bathroom of a Cheesecake Factory, as long as the other person is breathing. I guess my bachelor party reminded me why I’m getting married in the first place. Maybe that’s the point. TC mark

Buy Dave Schilling’s ebook, Letters from My Therapist, which he wrote while still single.

featured image – The Hangover

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