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theycancallyouhoju last won the day on November 14

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  1. theycancallyouhoju

    Work hours in big law

    Do you have a good read on whether the M&A associates were regularly above 1700? Ive never seen anyone else’s billing table, so I don’t know who is bullshitting me, but I have talked to people who describe years over 2500. Frankly, I don’t find my current pace so unsustainable. It would be a very different conversation if I had a child. Right now, all I have is some house plants and ferments going.
  2. theycancallyouhoju

    Workload in UK

    Law schools want to advertise that they’re teaching you ‘how to think’. The problem is that you’re 25 years old and you’re already about as good at generic ‘thinking’ as you’re going to be. There is no such thing as ‘thinking like a lawyer’ - that’s just a marketing slogan. Law requires generic analytic processing skills. It requires you to be a moderate-capacity stem cell. I’m on @pzabbythesecond‘s side in that the raw materials affect the output - indeed, to my mind, it’s the only factor at all. But I’m on @setto‘s side in that we can all at least agree that law school does nothing to make you more or less of a lawyer - it’s pure rent extraction by the Academy. Pay them their fine and move on.
  3. Yeah just for people reading this forum who aren’t practicing law yet, this is wrong. It is very rare that I have weeks where I can’t even watch TV - and it’s never the case that it lasts longer than weeks. I have friends who work in capital markets in grindhouses that churn out constant high-volume IPO work with horrible hours and they still watch tv.
  4. I think the Law School Stress Olympics is a real thing. Students get very little feedback and so they use a kind of echo-location among other students to try to sense out how they’re doing. They perform stress - and post on FB about it endlessly - as a way of assuring themselves that they’re working at least as hard as their competition.
  5. I spent less than 30% of my waking time on law school while I was in 1L, and less than 15% the other two years - I probably skipped half of all my classes in those years, though. Practice is obviously a lot busier and I have less time for my hobbies. But I still have multiple hobbies.
  6. theycancallyouhoju

    Workload in UK

    I’m still not convinced on this point. Hasn’t hurt me. I honestly think I’d have become the same quality of lawyer if I’d never attended law school - maybe that just says something about the quality of lawyer I am. Or maybe it’s purely limited to transactional lawyers. Or maybe a lawyer is just someone who learns new things quickly when required. But in any case, I practice NY law with a sizable chunk requiring an understanding of PRC law and it all seems to work out fine. But to @Diplock‘s point - I don’t think the quality of the law school curriculum matters even in the slightest way. Law schools are branding exercises. That’s why UT can keep charging higher and higher amounts - they aren’t selling the quality of the education, they’re selling a CV line item.
  7. theycancallyouhoju

    Work hours in big law

    And @setto / @diplosun Dude, and NY. Some of the time in a normal week is not billable. On weeks where it’s continuously top speed, you can bill anywhere from 70 - 100 hours (to be clear - very rare occurrence). Those are very bad weeks, obviously, but the conversion rate for lived hours to billed hours is extremely high. The rest of the time, there will be entire hours I’m sitting at the office waiting for someone’s comments - this is maybe a topic for a separate thread, but I strongly advise juniors to develop hobbies they can enjoy and/or work on during the downtime that inevitably arises. (Others prefer online shopping, which also works.) This year I’ll be on pace for over 2,300. I obviously can’t confirm anyone else’s numbers, but a few people tell me they’ll hit a fair bit higher than that. On the other hand, colleagues who went into the better quality of life small groups tell me they’ll be closer to 1900. Also - I don’t think we’re describing such significantly different hours. You go in at 7:30, I go in at 9:30.* So your 8pm is my 10pm. Seems like the real difference is that we have the odd all-nighter and some heavy 12pm/1am/2am weeks, which is probably just down to the different nature of our practices. *I do a lot of Asia-US work, so my days are sometimes extremely weird: call at 6am, call at 11pm, entire blocks of 3-4 hours immediately afterward with nothing really to do. It’s worse when I’m traveling. But that’s a fairly niche element.
  8. theycancallyouhoju

    Work hours in big law

    Even my answer is incomplete. Ive had about ten all-nighters, dozens of 3/4am nights, and too many 1ams to count. But insofar as any one week can be called ‘normal,’ I probably get out at 7:30 once a week, 8:30-9:30 for the rest unless something is jumping. Something is often jumping. And rare is the night I stop sending emails before 10pm. I’m getting better at not doing much on the weekends, but some clients don’t believe those exist.
  9. theycancallyouhoju

    Work hours in big law

    It’s entirely possible Toronto offices are that different, I obviously don’t have first hand knowledge. But I remain Suspicious that those are normal hours for people in the larger practice groups. Since I assume lots of anxious students are reading this and wondering how much of their life they’re signing away, it would be good to hear from Toronto biglaw M&A associates a few years deep that did not choose wisely and follow Jaggers path.
  10. theycancallyouhoju

    Work hours in big law

    I don’t think 7:30pm is an average time to go home in biglaw. Maybe Toronto just is that different, but 7:30 is unusually early for me and 6:30 is so unusual that I feel a tinge of un-reality when it happens. Almost inevitably, leaving at 7:30 means I’ll still be answering emails till 10 or 11. It’s very rare that work is actually done before 9, and it’s not irregular that work is done at 1am.
  11. theycancallyouhoju

    Methods for dealing with stress and lack of focus (spliced)

    I’m not making a blanket argument that the medical industry is an enemy. I’m not an anti-vaxxer. But the acquiescence of the social reformist/revolutionary factions to the medical/pharmaceutical industry’s desired hegemony over things like ‘depression’ is, I think rather obviously, wrong. It’s also plainly motivated by a desire for greater resources. People feel that medicalizing whatever pains them grounds a better argument for socialized costs. Anyway. You’re right, it is harder and does take more effort to work on yourself. But that’s precisely what makes it more sustainable. This isn’t rocket science - giving someone a sleeping pill knocks them out for a night, while developing healthy sleep patterns takes a long time and produces lasting results; ditto dieting versus gradual change in eating lifestyle; ditto acquiring a language through crash courses or slow repetition. For tens of thousands of years human beings did tasks without pausing to check their phone. I don’t think we should view aborration from that as a problem to be treated with drugs first.
  12. theycancallyouhoju

    Methods for dealing with stress and lack of focus (spliced)

    Frankly, before going to a doctor, I’d suggest reading good poetry, practicing tai chi, and playing a game of chess. Do things that breed patient, slow and deliberate action, that require focus on small details for a sustained time, but that are fun. If you can learn to attend to your task in that mode of thought when it’s fun, you can apply the same thing to tasks that suck, too. Develop habits, not dependencies.
  13. theycancallyouhoju

    Methods for dealing with stress and lack of focus (spliced)

    I was surprised over the last 10 years as both the leftist and general social consensus moved toward an increasingly medicalized/pharmaceutical view of the human condition. When I first went into college (which I guess is now a chunk more than 10 years ago...), the Foucaultian line of attack against medical/pharmaceutical solutions to every variant of human tendencies was left-leaning dogma. It was self-evident that pumping kids who had attention problems full of drugs instead of addressing the mental/tv/internet habits that gave rise to those problems was an example of an industry creating a market dependent on its products, rather than a meaningful way to resolve the issue. We used to talk about things like ennui and discuss depression or lethargy or unease as borderline philosophical issues, spiritual issues of a sort, treated with reflection on how to live a better life. To say that the pharmaceutical view of depression and anxiety and attention (etc) has now won would be an enormous understatement. The great thing about a medical view of psychological well-being is that it forms the basis of calling for more resources to be given to you: if the solution to my problems is a product, and products cost money, and my problem should be solved by society, then society should give me money. The other great thing about it is that it means you never really claim ownership over your own well-being: people talk about “having depression” or “having anxiety” (instead of “being apathetic” or “being anxious”) and describe it as a thing that sits on them, an external thing pushing on them, a weight, rather than an internal system that can be rewired. We have accepted in total the medical industry’s manner of describing these issues, to the point that it’s now the self-described radical left that throws around phrases like “these are scientific facts” as if they had forgotten that “gay sex is a mental disease” was a “scientific fact” in recent memory and not just some partisan assumption for which sympathetic psychologists developed a medicalized vocabulary and a suite of pricey products to sell. This is a very long way for me to say that on this point I’m stuck in early aughts-leftism and I really don’t think people should assume the first best answer to ‘how do I develop new mental habits’ is ‘the pharmaceutical industry will help you with that one’.
  14. Meditate. Go take a tai chi class and learn how. If it works - and it helps lots of people with these issues - it’s a much better solution than drugs.
  15. theycancallyouhoju

    What was it like getting in? How did you celebrate?

    She definitely seemed offended, and it definitely left a bad impression of the school. I wanted to ask her if she showed up to dates saying “you must be so excited to be with me”.