Tag Archives: USA

So I am 3L.

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Been a while.  I still think the law school is a ridiculous system but I still managed to survive 2 years.  It’s almost 3 am and I am still wide awake thanks to my PMS.

People usually tell 1L is the worst time, and it gets better in 2L.  Well, not for me.  I would say 1L and 2L years are busy and frightening to the same level.  1L year is tough because you are just trying to get used to the new surrounding, but then the school just doesn’t let you.  They keep throwing all this burdens you have to do, with very little direction.  I don’t know about others, but for me, 2L was a very busy year because I overloaded myself.  I took 5 courses in my 2nd semester of 2L year, two being writing credit courses, which is a graduation requirement for my school.  One of them was not regular writing – an intensive writing course.

Here the inefficient admin chimes in again.  Later in the semester, I found out my friend tried to take 2 writing courses in one semester.  Then the dean didn’t let her to do so, saying it would really increase her workload.  Well, I’m fairly sure the dean looked at my registration anyway but not a word was said to me.  Awesome…

One of those courses were called “transactional doc draft.”  2 credits, sound useful, right? WRONG.  Look, I haven’t really seen any of serious contract document until I come to the law school (to be fair, I saw a few, but it was for translation or to be used as manual for my reporting job).  So logically, the best way to teach this stuff would be
1) Explain a concept.  Or two.
2) Give an example and explain.
3) Make the students to write something similar and give feedback.

Well, I’m in a law school, where the common sense doesn’t work.  Instead, from day one, professor gives us 80+ pages long “model contract” with some “errors.”  That we have to spot and change.  Did I learn anything? No. But it squeezed so much my energy out for a 2 credit course.

But, on the other hand, the other writing course turned out to be so much better than I expected.  The professor was frigging awesome in a sense that he actually lives in a same planet with us, and talks about real shit and $, not some highly scholastic legal concept that exists somewhere far far away over the rainbow.  About half of the class were part time students, meaning they are actually older and have a work experience.   Plus, the prof lived in Korea and India for a while as a peace corp member so he was one of those few people who knows the linguistic challenge.

I could have done okay this semester, but this one other crazy professor totally screwed up my grade again.  I visited this professor before exam, and asked her whether the exam would be closed book or open book.  Easy question.  And a sane person would answer “yes, it’s an open book” or, “no, it’s a closed book exam.” Right? Wrong again.  Welcome to the law school.  Her answer was: “Well, it’s an open book but not really an open book, because the time is limited and you need to know the rules in your head.”

….So does that mean open book or closed book?  I have no fucking idea.  And I speak English well.  Then she never made it clear in class anyway: all I heard from the class was some classmates whispering, “I heard it was part open book and part closed book for last semester.”  Well, then, what should I do?  Prepare the worst.  So I prepared it as if I would do for a closed book exam: forget the rule #s in the exam prep note, and try to memorize the contents as much as I can.

….only to see that the exam instruction saying “it’s an open book test! cite rule #s for a full credit!”  Yeah, thanks so much.  The exam itself was crap.  All of sudden the “driver” in the facts disappeared and “Joe” appeared.  Who seems like the driver to begin with.  Then she nearly failed me (her words: “I could have failed you, but I decided to give a benefit of doubt.” yes thank you for your thoughtfulness, bitch).  Which shocked me, because I actually studied this shit.

Turns out, she simply didn’t give me full credits just because I didn’t cite the rule #s.  Which then shows, she is doing a very, very lazy way of grading: mark off the rule #s, rather than actually reading the answers.  If I remember correctly, she said something like “don’t worry about the rule #s” in the early semester.  And she really should have made what her exam would be like clear.  This was another moment where I seriously considered quitting, only until my tutor gave me an honest opinion: that although my answer isn’t the best exam answer, it really doesn’t deserve the grade I got, and this professor is fucking nuts (“I teach this stuff for living, but I would get confused in her questions, these are just bad, lousy questions.”).

In addition, I didn’t have any summer.  I overloaded my summer semester limit by taking two courses, and at the same time preparing for MPRE.

So it sounds like I still have an awful life.  Which is true, but this post ends with a happy note.

1) I take less courses than before, thanks to the summer overloading and clinic. 
2) I fucking passed MPRE – good enough to sit for bar exam in any state.  So I don’t have to worry about this for next 2-3 years. 

 

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Things I would do differently before coming to law school (or, tips for studying smart in law school)

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I bombed by 1st year in law school.  After agonizing whether I made the right decision and whether I should stay in school or not, I got to do a bit of reflection, and here’s what I realized.

Before coming to law school, I got all the right advices. Don’t pay too much attention in classes, what your professor says, or readings. Get the outlines, commercial study aids, old exams with answers as early as you can and practice writing exam answers with it.  So I did so.  I even took a pre-law school course.  And I massively failed. So how come I bombed my first year after following all the right advice?  I didn’t have anyone who could check whether I am on a right track and give me necessary feedback. Yes I was doing everything I was supposed to do, but there was no way to tell whether I am doing it correctly or not.  I was learning to play a sports on my own – which can easily lead to incorrect way of playing or posture.

When people ask me “so, how bad is the law school?” I usually give this hypo:

You want to be a tennis player, so you signed up for a tennis school.  You would expect learning by actually playing it with an instructor, with the instructor giving you corrections and feedback.  Well, instead, all they do in class is learning the nature of tennis tools, watch videos of old games and learn about famous tennis players and coaches.  And one day, the instructor hands you a tennis racket and ball, and say, “go out and play, I’ll grade how well do you play in comparison of others.”

In terms of efficient learning, this is wrong in so many ways, right? There will be people who somehow learn how to play tennis in this way but the number will be very, very small.  This is how things are “taught” in law school.

If I could go back in time, I would definitely to the following:

1) Get a good idea of rules and how to do legal writing BEFORE you get into law school. 

The point of law school legal writing, including exam, is how to apply the rules to facts and explain it to the reader.  And of course law school doesn’t teach this.  There is no need to give an absolute, clear conclusion.  At least for me, it took a while to realize this because I was in habit of writing “academic English writing” (and English isn’t my first language!).  Get a tutor, or someone who knows legal writing and can spend time with you, doing questions together, explain the rules even generally and give constant feedbacks on how to write.  Trust me, it will make your life so much easier.

When I was still unsure whether I should go back to school or not, I happened to meet a very personal and kind law school professor (not from my school) to talk about this matter.  Here’s her answer. “Law school doesn’t teach what you need to know upright.  Some people just do it well in their 1st year, probably without realizing what they are doing.  Some people get it in their 2nd year. Or 3rd year.  And unfortunately, some people just don’t get it until they graduate.  Based on your email I read, you have it but you either just didn’t realized it yet, or how to apply it to the legal writing.  What you need is someone who can sit down and spend time and do problems and give you a constant feedback.  Ask your school whether they can provide this.”

“Okay, what if they can’t?”

“Well, then get a bar tutor.  That’s what they do.”

So I did after I came back to school, and I’m kicking myself for not doing it early on, instead of spending $ on some not very helpful pre-law program.  Before getting a tutor, just do your research and talk with them. I did a test-drive with two tutors on separate subjects.  One was awful.  As time goes by, I was under the impression that tutoring just isn’t really high on her priority and she’s not taking it seriously.  Another one was so much professional and timely in communication and scheduling.  Of course I dumped the former one after the test drive is over. One of the person I called called ridiculously high price.  Some tutors can offer a discount if you do multiple subjects or stick with them for a long time.  So get a tutor, do your research with their professionalism and pricing.

2)  Use commercial aids!

Most cases, many professors describe commercial outlines as evil stuff that you should avoid at all cost.  They say “do the readings, go to classes every day and you’ll be fine.”  WRONG unless you are one of the small number of lucky ones, as I described in the above-mentioned tennis hypo.  Here’s what I would do if I go back to my 1st year.

Get a used textbook with lots of notes and highlights.
Get a casebriefs matching your textbook – commercial study aids what provides you a summary of each cases in your textbook.

For preparing your class, read the casebrief first.  You are ready for in-class cold calls…unless your professor is a pervert who asks every single details.

3) Get help for your legal writing class…from outside. 

Granted, the legal writing class will take almost all of your 1L year time, although they carry a lot less credit then your other classes (which is BS but I will probably write this in a separate post).  You’ll be lost how to find relevant rules, how to organize them, etc.  Does professor help? Probably not.

Here’s what happened in my first year legal writing class.  We were supposed to write a thing called “brief.”  My professor never provided a sample we can refer to: to the request, she simply said “you can find it from internet.”  When someone asks about something with the issue or how to put stuff on the paper, she answered “it depends on you.”  When I say that English isn’t my 1st language and I would like to get an extra help, she said she will be glad to help and I can contact her TA.  So I had a few extra meetings with TA but later on TA intentionally started to ignore my e-mails and texts, probably thinking I’m trying to cheat or get unfair advantage.  Of course I shitbombed that class.

After that, I asked a friend of mine to provide me some relevant secondary sources for each of my writing assignments.  I didn’t even ask to review my paper – just provide me relevant readings.  Then my writing grade started to get so much better.  Again, I kicked myself for not doing so early on.

 

Law school is like South Korean public education in many ways.  In South Korea, students actually learn from tutors and private prep institutions and get tested in school.  With a very small exceptions, it’s a norm that to be successful in school, you have to grind with tutors and private prep institutions.  If I were a Korean who went through Korean education system, I probably knew this early on.  Ironically though, I’m the Korean who didn’t really go through the national education system: most of my education was done in American system where people don’t really rely on tutors except special occasions.

In summary, get out of your undergrad habit.  Get help from outside early on, and don’t really expect to learn a lot from school.

 

* Some other thoughts
– Many law students are people who aced in small, local colleges and did not experience much failures.  So it’s pretty natural that a lot of them think they are in the top of the world.  Also, given that a lot of them doesn’t really have real life experience (paying your own bills, arranging your insurance, living on a payroll and dealing with various clients and bosses) they think they are entitled to something…not sure I am doing a good job describing the law school world.  Basically it’s pretty elitist.
– If you talk to the students individually, a lot of them are nice and friendly.  If you group them together, they all go a bit nuts.
– Don’t expect to get a help from your classmates.  I had instances where people (even upperclassmen who are not in the same class with me) said they can help me with exam prep, can give me old books, can talk with me for future scheduling, etc., only to disappear, ignore my contacts or meet me but make it pretty clear that they are annoyed.  Was I the only one? No, my friend – the only person I can actually call friend and would like to keep touch even after graduation – said same thing.

American law school: the single most inefficient, arrogant educational system I’ve ever experienced.

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The title says it.  I finished my 1st semester.  It’s officially the lowest GPA I’ve ever received (and no, I’m not using the Asian standard here), and you all know I’ve been unhappy with the program from the mid semester.  Indeed if my grades were a bit better, I wouldn’t be this upset.  But now that most of my grade rolled out, it’s like throwing a gas bomb into a burning house, burning house being my complaints which started from mid 1st semester.  Here are my point-to-point complaint about the law school system as a bit older student than average.

1. Do they know this is 1st year and all of 1st year students have no idea what the law is?

With very few exceptions, law school doesn’t teach anything in 1st year, which is ridiculous. They just throw you bunch of cases with zero context explained.  Then, in class, most of the professors talk about whatever they think is relevant or important.  Are you being tested on it? Hell no.  The exam is about how to apply the rules (which is rarely talked about in class) to the given situation (again, rarely done in classes).

If this is psychology or political science grad program, ok, I get it.  It’s legitimate to assume that 1st year students know a thing or two about the subject because they learned it from undergrad, and thus professors can throw materials and their ideas as much as they want.  Law? no.  There is no “law” undergrad major in America.  Many of us don’t know anything about the law.  Think it this way.  There is a group of people who have no idea about American football.  A chaperon takes a group to a game, without much pre-game explanation.  The game starts, and all the chaperon talks about is “that John Smith is an awesome quarterback,” “the linebacker is useless here” when people have no fucking idea about the general rules of football, let alone what is quarterback or linebacker.  After viewing one or two games without much explanation, all of sudden, the chaperon pushes the kids to the field and play the game, or makes them to write an analysis about a game strategy as a whole.  Then you are graded on that one thing.

I get, to some degree, why the law is taught in this way.  Lawyer’s job is to find a bunch of relevant cases and rules and draw a summary from it.  Oh, was this explained in my class? NO.

2. Ridiculous schedule

Yeah, okay, professionals are paid that much money to work under pressure in a tight schedule.  I get it.  But, I don’t know whether it’s efficient to work 1st year noobs under such a schedule.  Shouldn’t a school be a training institution, where you can practice and make a lot of mistakes and learn from it?  As I said before, because the nature of lawyer’s job, I think it’s essential to give the students some time to think about the material in various ways.  Then, as you get used to it, it will get faster.

Sadly, the law school doesn’t allow this.  From day 1, it’s assignment assignment assignment.  If you really follow what your professors say and their syllabus accordingly, you just do your reading assignment, go to class exhausted, and read for next class.  That’s it.  There’s no time to think.  And your grade depends on one-shot exam.  As the students got little bit more used to the law school system, the internship period rolls in, so you’ll have to send out your resume like crazy when the semester is still running.  And your first-ever grade in law school will affect that your first-ever internship.  In only 4-months timeframe of your 1st experience.

Look, I’ve had some BS, and I worked under pressure schedules.  Thing is, I was getting paid and actually worked on something, progressing toward a tangible result.  Here, you paid (a lot of $$) to learn and be a competent professional.  Do I think the system can achieve this goal? NO.

3. What’s most important carry the least weight. 

So far, the only practical and make-sense course is legal writing and research.  This is the class that is most closely related to the actual work of lawyer.  Yes, it’s a lot of work but I somewhat enjoyed it, because I really felt like I’m learning something practical.  I wanted to enjoy it more and put more time on it.  Well, you can’t.

So this single-most important class (and mostly taught by people with a lot of professional experience) gives far less credit than other courses.  In my school, all the other theory courses (which roughly falls under #1) are given 4 credits.  Legal writing? It’s a shit ton of work and 2 credits.  WTF. And, here’s the most ironic thing – because of the ridiculous workload and schedule, now I wish it was pass/fail course like some other schools, while not hating the course.  And most of these courses are taught by non-full time professors. WTF again.

4. It’s professional school but thing is sooooo geared to academics.

It’s professional school.  IMO, the professional school is a high-end trade school.  You are there to learn skill, and after learning, you should be able to use that skill to either earn your own $ or contribute something to the office.  When you sit in the class and listen to the lecture, you realize so much of the class is geared to the nerd academic side of the law.  I’m not downplaying the academic/philosophical side of a knowledge.  But, if more than 50% of the class is geared toward that way, in a school that doesn’t aim for purely academic career, there’s something wrong.

I see a young professors who actually practiced and new to the teaching trying to avoid this.  They try to throw in the stories of actual world and show a lot of real docs in use.  I thank them, and it’s a good change.  But still, it’s unsatisfactory.

If I can build a law school of my own, here’s what I would do.  I would make all 1st year students to take legal writing and research courses for a full year.  After they finish the course, then I would move on to the theory courses.  I would make each theory courses as 2 semesters long, so people can actually have time to think and discuss about the material.  I would definitely make more mandatory practical courses (with much more credit), like how to write formal documents, how you should behave when submitting the docs/face officials and what to do when bring the plaintiff/witness in, etc.  I would use commercial outlines and study aids as main textbooks, and then make the students read the case relative to that day’s class.

People did warn me about the ridiculousness of 1st year.  I thought I can just get over it, since I’ve taken some BS too.  It’s harder than I thought, because I paid a lot of money to be a competent professional, not an academic.  Yet I really don’t feel like I can acquire practical skills that can get me working from 1st month on the job.  The system is so flawed – on the top of the expensive tuition and useless classes, you have to buy bunch of study aids, and then you have to pay again for your bar exam (it’s well-known fact that schools are somewhat useless when it comes to bar exam preparation).

My 2nd semester stared, and I’m just not sure what to do.  If the market is good and my citizenship/visa isn’t an issue, I know what I do.  I’d fucking quit,or switch to part time program.

Drama Kings. Ugh.

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As a student who is slightly older than the average, the stress from law school isn’t only from the workload, psychotic professors and oh-so-breached system (which is a lot like Korean public education).  Social dynamic is one of them.  It’s not about me being a CCK or the only Asian person or the only international student in the lot.  So many people here don’t have any work experience, and their life and social interaction are limited to the school they are attending.

The school population is pretty small.  I see almost every one of them every single day.  There’s not much to talk about.  I don’t necessarily want to see them even in the weekends.  When asked, “hey, how was your weekend?” all they did was either work or drinking with yet another classmate.  I never enjoyed hardcore drinking even in college, and I don’t like drinking with people I don’t know well.  So, so far, I spent my weekends with my college alumni club, a friend living nearby with two kids, and another friend who is working nearby, happy with his partner for 10 years.  At week 4, people started to talk about who dressed trashy and who is sleeping with whom.  Not my thing since high school, especially so if you are well over mid 20.

Today, a great exemplary event has occurred.  Ken, a Korean-American classmate of mine, sits next to me.  He’s nice, but he is still pretty immature young – never serious, talks a lot, somewhat careless.  I never went out with him for a meal or drink, but I tried to keep things friendly.

So today, as I sit down, take books out and getting ready for the class, he started talking.

Ken: Yo, I went out with this Chinese kid, and he thinks you are Ajumma.  We were talking about you, and he was like “yeah I think she is Ajumma.  She looks like one.”

For those of you who doesn’t know what Ajumma means, here’s the link.  It’s not the most flattering word.  I can’t say I was in the best mood after hearing this, but honestly I really don’t care what these kids do or say.  I replied, “well, I’m older than most of you guys anyway.”

Then Ken said, “see, that’s why you have to come out and hang out with us more often.”

Oh wait…I think I’ve been in this situation.  Back in the college, a b*tch in Korean students community did pretty much same thing.  The difference is, she meant bad.  Ken just doesn’t know better. Oh lord, forgive this naiveté.  There’s a reason why you should not pass bad words, because it gets you in trouble, not the person who said it.

And, if you want to make someone to hang out with you, you should keep passing positive things, not “hey, so-and-so said you are like a pot dealer.  That’s why you should come out more.”  It should be more of trying to please the person – “hey, come on, it’s gonna be fun.  I know you like video games, we’ll play Wii.”  I wasn’t mad at Ken – but my frustration with these “young kids” was let loose.

Me: Well, why do you pass such words to me? They aren’t necessarily good words.  Why make troubles?

Ken: No, no, it was just that, nothing more than that.

And then he started to think I’m mad at him.  He messaged me how he is sorry.  Well, that’s not the point, is it? So I replied again:

You don’t have to be sorry because it’s not your fault. It’s just that if you expect someone to hang out with you, you guys should think twice and not pass the words, or talk things about people who are not present with you guys.

Then, like 10 hours later, he sent me an e-mail: details about how the conversation went, how they have better things to do than talk about me (then why pass the words to begin with?), how he was just throwing jokes and that’s what friends do, and how he’s going to keep things strictly ‘professional.’

First, I don’t care about what went on at their drinking table.
Two, I don’t think we are friends.
Three, even if you thought it as a joke, if the person hearing it isn’t very pleased, that’s not a joke.
Four, “professional?” since when we are “professionals?” Are we in the same workplace?  To my knowledge, we are full time students.
Five, if you want to apologize, drop all the bullsh*t and stick with your apology.  No background, no explanation, no sh*t.
Lastly, why sending me all these details 10 hours later?

I guess this is what guys feel when a girl they dated once or twice send them some long, mad letter with all these details and BS.  But hey, I gotta thank that he figured we are not BFF and how to leave me alone.  If I were a few years younger, I would send some long reply.  But as I age more, one of the life wisdom I realized is that it’s just not worth it.  Some people just don’t understand no matter how hard you try to explain.  If you see the sign, just walk away and leave it there.  As the Beatles said, let it be.

Drama Kings are no better than Drama Queens.  Boy I just can’t wait until the first year ends.

I’ll Be Good Catholic Again

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I am baptized Catholic, but I wasn’t all that religious.  I believe in spirituality, though.  I don’t necessarily agree with all Catholic teachings (such as, women still not allowed to be priest, contraception, not accepting LGBT, etc) but I never had any bad feelings on Catholicism itself.   In fact, I admire what sisters and fathers are doing in some of the poorest and most dangerous places of this world.

But I stopped going mass.  I am not a morning person at all.  And, even if I went to Catholic college, I didn’t go to mass.  I was busy doing my works and papers.  I didn’t feel it was all that necessary.

Today, I went to the local community service organized by my college alum club here.  The church is located in one of the poorest neighborhood, and it is run by a Franciscan father, who is also an alum.  We started off with a mass.

As I mumble prayers (CCK’s catch: in addition to not really remembering prayers, I get mixed up with Korean and English prayer), out of blue, I thought: this is home.  This is where I belong.  The thought grew stronger as people finish the mass with my school’s alma mater song (which, obviously, is almost like hymn and about praising Mother Mary).

When I was living in Japan, my wonderful host family – without them, my Japan experience would not have been this great – were Christian.

My best friend, whom I met in high school in Michigan, was also Catholic.  We didn’t ask “hey, are you Catholic?” right away.  After we got close, we found out that we are all Catholic.

When I first moved to Indiana, a great local family who made my life in college so much easier was also Catholic.

As I entered the Church today, everything was so familiar.  Fathers, Eucharist, big sculpture of Jesus and Mary – all that.  Then I thought, maybe, it is something I can’t escape.  Something I must accept.

After I came back from the church, a neighbor down the hallway knocked at my door.  Red, a cheerful retired man, was at my door.  He has been very friendly ever since I moved to South Jersey.  He took my package and wrote me a card.  He came to check whether I’m doing alright, and got all the furniture I need.

“Oh, yeah, mostly.  I got them from Ikea.”
“Ikea!” Red replied, “No, you shouldn’t by that cheap stuff!  Come on, I’ll show you my furniture and pictures, and let me give you some furniture shop address.”

As we walk down the hallway, he asked what I did today.  I said I bid farewell to my mom and aunt, and went to the local church for community service.

“Oh, you Catholic?”  said Red, “I’m too.  I go to St. Andrews, you should come along for a mass there.”

I felt like crying.  This entity/system/religion/spirit/God/whatever has been watching me and following me for my entire journey up to now, helping out whenever it can. Yet I never really paid attention.  I’ve been taking it for granted.

I can’t escape this.  And I’ll be happy to accept it.  I felt destiny.

Why Mitt Romney is So Personal To Me

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One trademark of TCK/CCKs is that they feel very vivid, 4D worldview.  Unlike many people whose international experience is limited to indirect experiences, TCK/CCKs can actually recall every sensory images related to the foreign place they have lived vividly.  So, for instance, a TCK/CCK reaction to watching the bombing of Baghdad would be: “How the heck can they do that? They can’t do that, my nanny is still living there!  The marketplace where I used to buy locum after school would disappear now!”

 

Well, who would have known that Mitt Romney would bring such an experience to me.  I went to the high school where Romney graduated.

 

“Well, he was the son of then-governor of Michigan, and his family was affluent. Obviously he would go to either Cranbrook Kingswood, or Detroit Country Day. (two most popular and well-known private schools in Detroit area)”– was my thought.  Just that.

 

But later, the news spread how Romney bullied a kid (and possibly more than one) back in school.  In the school that I attended.  In the town I “lived.”  Reading that news, I just couldn’t see Romney like I used to.  Romney went to Cranbrook back in 60’s: I went to the same school decades later.  However, I doubt there has been much change in the school, the town and people in it.   I’m pretty sure I mentioned it before, but the town – Bloomfield Hills – is just not a friendly town.  Sure, I know a few people who were incredibly kind.  And if you meet the people individually, I bet they are nice.  But overall, the town is not kind to stranger.  It’s a password locked glass sphere.  You are just not part of the town unless you lived in the area for good +10 years.  The school’s dean (white woman) and another teacher (black man) were married for more than 10 years, but I really don’t recall seeing them holding their hands together or doing anything that is commonly done by a married couple in public.  A lot of residents send their kids to either Cranbrook or DCD from kindergarten to 12th grade, thus the locked sphere continues.  When Tiffany & Co. released the famous silver chain necklace and bracelet, 80% of the girls were wearing it (note: not me).  When Puma released casual snikers line, every single guys in school were wearing it.  When Tory Burch released the famous flats for women, every single girls started to wear it within a week (note: again, not me).  Think of the Desperate Housewives, J-Crew and Ralph Lauren.  That’s the town.

 

As you’ve probably assumed, a lot of kids (Korean-Korean kids too) there are spoiled.  A guy somehow brought his dad’s Jaguar convertible and managed to crash it into the woods.  A senior kid was caught of plagiarism.  He was kicked out from school, but somehow managed got the diploma.  I still don’t understand.  Another senior kid and sophomore kid were caught when smoking pots.  I don’t know the details, but the senior kid was not kicked out; the sophomore kid was kicked out.  The Korean kids, too, would just casually go to the local Armani Exchange Store and Gucci to spend good $300.

 

The school administration was so not helping.  If someone gets into the trouble, some scholarship kid who doesn’t have rich parents or can’t make donation would get punished; a kid whose parents make a lot of donation would get by, even if they bring drugs or weapons to school (I’m serious, I heard this from then-teaching faculties.  I maintain a good relationship with some of the teachers.  They were great.).

 

So that’s the sum of the town and school shared by me and Romney.  Then he has been on the “elite” track pretty much all the time. The bullying itself might not be a big deal, but knowing the whole town’s air and what the school was like, I have to admit I don’t hold a favorable opinion on Romney.  Because, based on my experience and knowledge of that place, I doubt Romney has any good understanding of the world outside of his glass sphere, he actually represents American public at large. And people rarely change.

Don’t Be So Wry, Sir.

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http://samurai01.egloos.com/tb/2802138

The above link is a blog post written in Korean.  I would look at his blog from time to time, since he is studying Japanese history, which is closely related to my 2nd major (And also a topic that continuously interests me).  Usually, I don’t really comment everything on someone’s blog.  Everyone is bound to think differently.  If I don’t like it, I don’t have to pick a fight.  Just leave it and do your stuff.
But this post really bothered me.  Mainly:

– That these parents of Korean students in prestigious American university have no reason to “spend frigging +$50,000” other than placing their kids to some financial firm at Manhattan.

– That the Korean students at his prestigious American university are well-behaved and nice, more than he used to think.  Because their parents “brainwashed” them to behave so being pretty wealthy family, and some thinks it’s the way to keep their reputation as “pretty wealthy family.”

First point.

What kind of crooked view is this?

Sure, maybe some Korean parents have such strange desire to place their kinds in some well-known financial firm in Manhattan.  But why make such a big leap of generalization, based on one school in one specific region?  Same can be said for many white American parents of my high school.  I know a plenty of them said to their kids’ college advisor, “I am not going to let my kid apply non-Ivy schools.”  I also know a ROTC guy (not Korean) who was terrified when he got his camp assignment – everyone in his family went ROTC and served in a same camp, and this guy didn’t get in.

I know a lot of Korean international students’ parents who sent their kids to America for a lot of different reasons.  Some just couldn’t handle the intensity of Korean high school students (which also greatly affects parents too).  Some didn’t want their kids to be order-following test-grinding machine (my parents, I guess).  And some had family crisis, such as divorce, so they sent their kids abroad.  Some had kids that really, really wanted to go abroad and study.

So don’t you fucking make such generalization, based only on a small portion of population, limited to a certain area.
Second point:

Again, what the heck is wrong with him?  He just can’t even appreciate someone’s good behavior?  And the reason behind their good behavior is only because they are from wealthy family?

Maybe, unlike myself, he had a plenty of well-behaved people around him so started to take them for granted.  All of the well-behaved, gentle people I’ve ever met were not limited to a certain social class.  The cleaning man and guests at the local homeless center were some of the best gentlemen.  Some of the most impolite, good-for-nothing kids I’ve ever met were from everywhere, from very wealthy family to just average.

At least based on my experience, someone’s manner and behavior have nothing to do with their family’s earning and social class.  If there is one standard that can tell anything about someone’s behavior and manner, that’s their parents’ value and personality.

Honestly, if you had a chance to meet someone who is nice and well-mannered, you are lucky just fucking appreciate it.  Don’t add things in and twist your view, like “oh, of course, it’s just another dirty trick to satisfy their vanity.”

Look, blog writer.  Few years ago, you wrote, as watching 20-something lady so surprised after crashing her Nissan Infinity, you didn’t really feel any sympathy, thinking “well, she’s got rich family, I bet.” Then you found yourself getting greatly worried over your friend’s phone call, saying he was involved in a car accident.  And that you were embarrassed to hold such double standard.

How do you know that Nissan Infinity is from her parents? Maybe it was her dream car, so she worked really hard or got a loan or was on a really good deal lease.

You, apparently, finished your Ph.D in one of the most prestigious universities over 6-7 years.

Shouldn’t you know better?  Generalization is no-no in the States, for most of people.  And, when you are writing things in open blog, you really should be careful of what you are writing.

See, this is why I don’t like many Koreans in America, especially those who came over much later in their life.  They generalize everything.  Everything is either black of white.  They only see a very small part of life.  They can’t just accept things as they are.  And, it’s not uncommon for them to bash on younger people who have international experience, saying “oh, those kids must be so spoiled, rude, just lucky kids with rich parents, blah blah blah” without ever considering the fears and stress they have (and consider them “nothing” compared to their own worries.  Now who’s impolite?).

People like you make us wanting to further distance ourselves from Korea.

Few years ago, a good friend of mine, Susie, shared one of her worries.  Back then, in her early 20s, Susie was going to one of the best schools for biology, so she was working at on-campus bio lab.  Susie is pretty hard-working student, who hates getting involved in politics and arguments.  So she just do her job, say bye, go back to her place and work on her assignments.

There was one Korean MA student (mid 30) in the same lab.  He finished his BA in Korea, and never lived abroad.  For no reason, he started to spread bad gossip on Susie.  He would approach Susie’s lab mate, and say stuff like “Susie’s so rude, she doesn’t greet me properly, it’s pretty selfish to just finish her job and go, blah blah.”  Susie was so stressed out, because 1) she didn’t have nerve to spare on this, and 2) she really could not figure out what she did wrong to him.  She said greetings to him properly, and they weren’t that close.

The only answer we could think of was…that he was just jealous.   He was jealous, because, being 30 something, he was struggling to swim in this brave new world he had never been, let alone language.  Then there was Susie, who was far younger than himself, yet speaks far better language and seems to handle stuff far better than himself.

Honestly, if I were him, I would just ask for help or focus on my damn business.  I don’t really understand him.  But now reading the above linked blog post, I think I know why.  Even if they go abroad and spend long years, they are still very Korean.