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Law school makes for a fascinating time in one’s life. The endless hours of reading for class and outlining for exams, the daily game of law school roulette (desperately hoping you don’t get cold-called in class while shopping for new shoes), and the stress of searching for a job in today’s shrinking legal market are all anything but boring. But the most interesting and exciting part of law school comes from the fact that each graduating class is smaller than your average high school graduating class. It’s like someone decided to put all the most neurotic, career-focused, and morally ambiguous people in a microcosm of stress and competition for the world’s worst social experiment — all the while making craploads of money off of them.
During my time in this magical land of cortisol and alcohol, I had the pleasure of having a front row seat to the absurd social dynamics that occur each academic year. While I can honestly say I have never dipped my pen into the law school ink, a fair amount of my colleagues have fallen prey to the seductive embrace of one another’s arms. Don’t get me wrong, I’m not knocking finding love (or some other emotion) within your section, class, or other social setting — the combination of proximity, stress, and copious amounts of booze make law school relationships all but inevitable. I will, however, provide you with an overview of the most common types of law school hookups in an attempt to give you, dear reader, a glimpse into the inner workings of higher education’s least revered institution.
Mike sits next to a cute girl, Rachel, during his 1L torts class. He quickly introduces himself and the two begin a Gchat to help them make it through the class period. After class, Mike makes a clever but unfunny joke (as law students often do) about one of the grisly deaths in the cases and Rachel laughs. Mike asks Rachel if she would like to go over the readings for each class together and Rachel, thinking Mike is cute, agrees. Eventually, after hours of reading about gruesome deaths and boring products liability cases, Mike and Rachel realize their attraction to each other and do the dirty deed.
Harvey looks forward to classes every day because he knows that Donna will be sitting near him in the back of the classroom. One boring Friday afternoon during class, Harvey is cold-called by the professor. He struggles to answer correctly, despite his friends’ attempts to send him the answer via iMessage, because he is on Deadspin reading the text message conversations between Richie Incognito and Jonathan Martin. Donna raises her hand to answer the question, saving Harvey from answering and allowing him a minute to look up the answer to the next question. After class, Harvey approaches Donna to thank her and they begin chatting. The next Saturday morning, Harvey and Donna wake up together. Unlike in class, Harvey was able to close the deal.
Jessica is on her second day of orientation for her new law school. During one of the more boring speeches, she manages to grab a seat next to a rather unconventionally handsome student named Louis. They chat for a while, ignoring the dean of the law school’s insistence that they maintain a certain level of professionalism, and make plans to drink heavily that evening at a nearby bar. In scenario A, Jessica and Louis go home together and remain attached at the hip for the rest of orientation and law school. In scenario B, Jessica and Louis go home together, wake up the next morning, and never speak to each other again.
Harvey walks out of his corporations exam, confident he successfully articulated the difference between 10b-5 and Section 11 liabilities. He meets his friends at the bar closest to the law school and immediately begins drinking heavily. Harvey and his buddies get post-exam drunk, the second weirdest type of drunk a law student may find him- or herself (the weirdest is post-bar exam). Harvey eyes a woman several years his senior, known to him as the hot British LLM student who talks too much during morning classes. Harvey approaches her and finds out her name is Scottie. Harvey and Scottie leave together shortly thereafter, presumably to engage in gland-to-gland combat. Afterwards, Scottie goes back to the U.K. and they never speak again.
Donna just finished up her sixth week of work as a summer associate for a top-ranked corporate law firm. She has been awfully busy working sixty to seventy hours a week on top of the frequent summer associate outings and happy hours, and she’s looking to blow off some steam. Donna has been working on a large M&A deal with another associate named Mike, and she finds him cuter every day (proximity will do that to you). During their next summer associate happy hour, Donna buys several rounds of shots for herself and Mike, punching their tickets to blackout city. Donna and Mike leave together, enjoy their wild night of passion, and arrive late to work the next day, two hours after the deal closing is scheduled to begin. Donna and Mike are summarily fired. They transfer law schools and are never heard from again..
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