Wednesday, December 23, 2009

Disdain for Poor Grammar Brings UA Student Success

Lovely article by Wayne Grayson in the Tuscaloosa News.
Sharon Eliza Nichols’ quiet, polite voice doesn’t sound like it belongs to the type of person who would author a book called “I Judge You When You Use Poor Grammar.”

But when Nichols begins to talk about the experience of writing a book, a more fun, even mischievous, side comes out.

favorites so far.

Wednesday, December 09, 2009

Death to Dead Law

Dead law is dead. Thank goodness. The exam was today, and I honestly feel like there was nothing else I could have done to prepare. My friend Bud and I pulled an all-nighter, which I think was his first, just to memorize as much as we could (the exam was closed-book). He also calmed me down when I was close to tears this morning because I felt so unprepared (and I've been studying this for weeks).

[SIDEBAR: I've mentioned tears several times in the last couple days. Something about exams and lack of sleep makes them happen; I'm usually not "that girl crying in the hallway."]

Do you ever get that feeling, though, that right when the proctor says "ok, pencils down and stop typing" that you missed something? I got that feeling and then remembered right away the third duty that a trustee has: loyalty, prudence, and impartiality. I couldn't remember impartiality! I remembered that it started with an "i" and was a fairly long word, but I couldn't deduce impartiality from that. Ugh. Hopefully that won't count too much against me.

The rest of the test was fairly straight forward, but it does no good to analyze my performance at this point. It's done; I can't change anything, and I'm stuck with whatever grade I got.

Monday, December 07, 2009

Tide Fans

My friend Barron at The New Republic pulled up this article by Howell Raines for me, about legendary Coach Bear Bryant (which goes nicely with this article by Jason Zengerle, addressing racial relations at the historic university).

I bring this up because I was reminded this weekend, the weekend of the SEC Championship game in which we beat the heck out of Florida, just how far Crimson Tide fans will go for their team. I know people planning road trips to Pasadena, CA, where the National Championship will be. That's somewhere around 29 hours of driving.

In the freshman class there seems to be a rush of both girls and guys named Bryant. So the crazy fans aren't just naming their pets after the team or a coach -- they named their kids after him. My favorite is an infant in the church nursery named Crimson. Crimson, the color, like Crimson Tide.

Talk about devotion to your team.

Friday, December 04, 2009

Shout Out

This is so flattering, and I'm so thankful to Aaron Latham and Jeb Richter for doing it. The law school put a little bio on the homepage with links to my blog and the Amazon page for the book. How nice is that?

(You should be able to click on the screenshot for a bigger view, or just go to the law school's homepage if you want to see it.)

"There was no reflection on this habit, no idea that God deserved better than cliches."

Quote of the day:
Now there was no antidote to the stock phrases I had been hearing over the years that had begun to pain me whenever they were uttered. 'The Lord has really laid a burden on my heart for you. How's your walk with the Lord? She has a heart for single mothers. Let's just lift these things up to Jesus. We just pray, Lord, for your wisdom and guidance.'

It all sounded like effeminate earnestness. It was lingo. People picked up the phrases and passed them around like a contagion, which meant they were perfectly happy to use what was lying about and say what everyone else was saying. There was no reflection on this habit, no idea that God deserved better than cliches. -- Not That Kind of Girl
I like this quote because it expresses my frustration with organized, especially evangelical, religion. God deserves better than our words, and He certainly deserves better than cliches.

Tuesday, December 01, 2009

Deep Fried Babies

A few weeks ago a girl in the newsroom said something so funny I almost fell out of my chair laughing. We were talking about how southern people will deep fry just about anything, and she said:
My grandmama would fry a BABY if she could. She'd then proceed to CAN that baby, because she cans everything in sight -- pears, apples, babies, if that were socially acceptable.
I think that adequately illustrates the southerner's love of fried food and canning food to preserve it.

We now have a quote sheet on the wall of the newsroom to keep track of quotable moments like this one.

Alabama Election Law

My biggest exam this semester is dead law -- technically titled Decedents' Estates -- and it's about wills and trusts. The other big exam I have is in Alabama Election Law.

I know this is a long shot, but if anyone has an outline for Alabama Election Law, it would be greatly appreciated and I'd return the favor in (almost) any way I could. Email me at Senichols [at]

Exams and Root Canals

Has anyone had a root canal? I had to have one a few weeks ago, and while it wasn't painful during the procedure (they gave me so much Novocaine my face was numb up to my eyes), it hurt very badly afterwards. Root canals are done in two stages, so I go back for the second part tomorrow.

To anyone who's had one: What should I expect? Will it hurt as badly afterwards as it did the first time?

This came at a particularly bad time, right before exams. Ugh. At least my biggest exam is nine days away.