Posts Tagged ‘Los Angeles’

ChicagoI will soon be in Los Angeles and Chicago for these Supreme Ambitions events, to which you are enthusiastically invited:

1. Los Angeles (Pasadena) — Sunday, April 19, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m. — Ninth Circuit Open House

Previously discussed here. RSVP here. The event is free and open to the public. Refreshments and inexpensive CLE credits will be offered.

2. Los Angeles (Mid-Wilshire) — Tuesday, April 21, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. — HLSA Event

The Harvard Law School Association of Los Angeles is hosting an event with me at Southwestern Law School (but you don’t need to be connected to either law school to attend; it’s open to all). To get details and RSVP, please go to Eventbrite. (You can say you’re coming through Facebook, but registration must be done through Eventbrite.)

3. Chicago (Downtown) — Wednesday, April 22, 6 p.m. to 8 p.m. — YLSA event

The Yale Law School Association of Illinois is hosting an event with me at the offices of Skadden, to which law alumni of Harvard, Northwestern, the University of Chicago and Yale are invited. I’ll be chatting with Professor Will Baude of the University of Chicago Law School (who wrote one of my favorite reviews of Supreme Ambitions). Books will be available for sale. Details here; RSVP here.

4. Chicago (South Side) — Saturday, April 25, 3 p.m. — Book Chat At Sem Co-Op

I’ll be at the Seminary Co-Op Bookstore, a beloved Chicago institution, to chat with Professor William Birdthistle of Chicago-Kent Law School, my co-clerk from my Ninth Circuit days. The event is free and open to the public, and books will of course be available for sale. Details here; RSVP here (but RSVPs are not required; feel free to just stop by).

Please help spread the word. If you have any questions, feel free to email me. I look forward to seeing you at one or more of these events!

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Ed. note: Apologies for the delay between this installment and the last one. As you can see, I’ve moved from a Wednesday/Sunday posting schedule to something more… sporadic.

I spent Tuesday morning reading the briefs and doing some research for Hamadani, an immigration case involving a Pakistani man seeking political asylum in the United States. The immigrant, who overstayed illegally years ago but went on to start a successful small business (a grocery store), as well as to raise two kids here, seemed sympathetic. But the legal standard for granting asylum struck me as stringent.

So immersed in my reading, I didn’t realize it was half past noon until James’s tall, slender figure materialized in the doorway of my windowless office.



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I spent the rest of my first day in chambers with Janet Lee, the outgoing clerk that I would be replacing. Janet, whom I had briefly met when I interviewed with the judge, was also originally from New York, although she had gone to law school out here in California, at Stanford. She was now moving back to New York to work at Wachtell Lipton.

After reviewing the general workings of the Ninth Circuit with me, Janet described my specific duties as a clerk. They could be divided up into three broad areas.


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As I arrived at the Ninth Circuit courthouse for my first day at work, I knew I was nervous. My grey Theory skirt suit, a pricey splurge from my summer at Cravath, wasn’t giving me the usual jolt of confidence. I don’t tend to sweat very much, but by the time I arrived at work, I was sweating — and it wasn’t from the seven-minute walk from my apartment to the courthouse, in a still-cool California morning.

This Monday marked the start of my Legal Career. And because I went straight though to law school from college, this was also the first day of my first Real Job. This was a Big Deal….


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Intrigued by my new neighbor, I didn’t notice how much I was leaning into the white gate — which swung open with a loud creaking noise. I fell forward for a second before regaining my footing. The young woman looked up, and our eyes met.

“Girl, what you looking at?”

Her aggressive tone caught me off guard. I was momentarily speechless.

“What,” she said, “are your ears as small as your tiny white ass?”


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