Friday, December 08, 2006

Adventures in Exam-Taking

For those readers not at my law school, a fire alarm went off at the school yesterday--during my 1L Contracts final exam, no less. As if law school is not stressful enough. Fortunately it was a false alarm, and was not a prank, either. Once the alarm passed, everybody got extra time to get back in the groove of answering the exam.

Law school can be so all-consuming that your priorities get a bit skewed. When an alarm goes off, you are concerned about losing your work, not losing your skin. Or perhaps you begin to wonder whether a felony or a tort has been committed. How's that for "thinking like a lawyer"?

From my days in the practice of law, I can say that such skewing occurs there too, especially when you are billing by the hour. "That fire alarm took 0.4 hours of my day," people would say. And I have known attorneys to not evacuate a building because they were too busy. In fact, I believe I did that once or twice myself. Skewing indeed.

Even on 9/11 in DC, some people stayed in the office well after it became clear what was going on. That time, though, I did not.


Anonymous said...

The fire alarm was quite distracting as was the police chase that occured after the bank robbery nearby. And sadly, due to the importance of that one exam,it was merely nothing more than a distraction. We all disregarded the potential danger and kept working on our exam until someone came in and cleared us out of the room. For some of us, the flames would've probably been less painful than finals. As for the torts, I think we may have a case for IIED. But in all seriousness, I think I can speak on the behalf of all of my classmates when I say thank you for the way that you and the MC staff handled the situation.

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