Monday, August 18, 2014

Youthful Indiscretions...they catch up

I grew up with a fair amount of physical pain and suffering, and knowledge that my body is fragile and perishable.  So, when “adults” talked about how “kids these days” think they’re invincible or that they’re immortal, I sided with the “adults.”  I knew that I was weak and that I may succumb to ill health or any other physical vulnerabilities.  I had developed TMJ early on, probably starting with the major head injury brought upon myself at age 7, and lived with migraines, locked jaws and other incredible pain.  I knew I shouldn't rest the weight of my head on my chin in my would exacerbate the problems.  I knew I could break.
I scoffed at the silly indiscretions of my youthful peers, those who engaged in risky behaviors, putting their physical and emotional and mental health on the line.  I knew that acting without forethought would only hurt them in the long run and they’ll regret not making better choices and taking better care of themselves.  I thought I was being responsible and had sufficient perspective, and was lauded for making relatively wise choices as a young person. 
That was then.  Now, nearly two months into my 32nd year of life, I realize that I too have had some youthful indiscretions, as cautious as I had been, though the level of caution taken fluctuated and lessened with increasing age.  Either way, I’m guilty of not eating regular meals, of partaking in some alcoholic beverages, partaking in “risky” activities (sky diving, ATV/four-wheeling in a desert without a helmet or safety gear, etc), eating food that’s probably past its prime and/or was prepared in an unsanitary environment, and the list goes on…oh, especially not sleeping.  I used to hold on to the thought, “I’ll sleep when I’m dead,” and wished for a sweet moment of death so that I may sleep.  All were unhealthy and silly indiscretions of a mind clouded by youthful optimism. 
I now have screwed with my body enough that I get low-blood sugar headaches if I forget to eat regularly, I have scoliosis, chronic post-tibular tendonitis and bursitis that flares up once in a while.  I am non-athletic and a cloudy mind from the lack of a regular sleep schedule.  I chose a career that robs me of rest and peace of mind, which I find to be emotionally draining and physically exhausting.  I can no longer look at young people and scoff at their indiscretions, because, even though I thought I knew and appreciated my mortality and my physical fragility, I knew far less and appreciated far less than I thought I had.  I now know that I am intricately connected to my family and my social groups, I cannot healthfully function in a vacuum, as I once thought myself capable of doing should the need arise.  I am even more fragile and subject to the physical and mental challenges of this world.  I realize youth is, indeed, fleeting.

Wow I feel old.

[On the disappointments of the job front: It looks like I won't be able to go on the family vacation to Jeju Island that was planned and plane tickets purchased over 4 months ago.  I will spend another traditional family vacation alone and depressed.  And now they're wavering on the home leave the partner had suggested I take in October after the hearing.  There's no winning here, there's no life, there's no consideration of your humanity or need for rest, there's no upholding of their words.  It's all functions of their changing whims.]

Wednesday, April 2, 2014

April showers...blah blah blah...spring flowers

April showers are supposed to be indicative of the coming of spring and the life that seems to spring up all around, usually.  In Seoul, it means that the toxins in the atmosphere get carried down to the earth and your head, potentially causing hair loss/hair folicle damage/baldness.  I don't know if any of it's true, but the Koreans really are afraid of the rain making them bald, which, I must add, was NOT something I was warned about as a 4 yr old when I lived here before.  You know what?  Their paranoia is getting to me.  I already noticed that I have a bit of hair loss at the top of my head, which may not be noticeable to most since I was like a lion with a full mane of slippery (fine?) hair.  I attribute my hair loss to stress but I am starting to fear the environmental factors too...what if the rumors are true?  Another foreigner of Korean descent warned me, better safe than go bald at 40.

So I feel like in Korea, instead of every cloud having a silver lining, it's the other way around.  Each silver lining has a large, grey cloud of toxic rain looming behind it.  Such a weird thought.

6TH ANNIVERSARY, Residual Swelling
I also noticed that today might be the 6th anniversary of my orthognathic surgery (Lefort 1 and BSSO).  Despite the pain, and the octogenarian diet I kept up with for a year, if I had to go back 8 yrs, I'd make the same decision to go through with the painstaking process.  I had teeth removed and braces put in to arrange my remaining teeth just so for about 2 yrs before I went under the bone saw.  Then I sat in the ICU looking like an angry blowfish and half dead and suctioning globs of blood from my mouth/throat and continuously jabbing my morphine pump.
I still get swelling on the lower left side of my face/jaw daily, but at least I can take a bit of a sandwich and actually cut the food into bite-sized pieces.  Actually, if I get adequate rest, live a balanced life, and kinda deal with the normal amounts of stress, then the swelling doesn't happen as much or goes away completely.
It's just that I made romanticized? stupid?...decision to go to law school, take the bar, and be a lawyer.  When I was a prosecutor things weren't that terrible; I mean, I wanted to win the trials and keep the streets a little safer, dole out punishment for crimes, etc.  Then I made a really dumb, overly-ambitious decision to take a job abroad, in a large firm with big egos and lots of annoying, constant stress and inhumane work hours.  And it appears I am permanently swollen on the lower left side of my face.  Most ppl don't notice it much w/out careful examination, just that things aren't 100% symmetrical.  I used to think it had something to do with which side I slept on, but I now think it's fully just the lack of sleep, overdose of stress and a poorly scheduled life.

One of my best friends from law school married an orthognathic surgeon (resident, still), and he told me that I had my operation in the nick of time, essentially.  You see, I had lost feeling in the lower left quadrant of my maxillo-facial system after the operation, and about 6 months later, the feeling started to slowly return, at first like just a numbness, but now I think I have regenerated nerves.  I might have just gotten used to it and learned how to cope and pretend I have full feeling, who knows.  I just touched the left side of my chin and the right side of my chin and they def. feel different, so maybe I've been fantastic at fooling myself.  But then again, some mornings/days, I am numb in that swollen side and the feeling returns or I get used to it as the day progresses.
Anyhow, my friend's new husband (not that she had an old husband and traded him in or anything, it's the only husband she's had, as far as I know) told me that once nerve damage happens during maxillofacial surgery after the age of 25, the nerves generally don't grow back.  But since I had mine before I turned 25, I had nerve regeneration.  So, if you're considering having a doctor chop up your jaw and realign your bite, do it btwn the ages of 18-25.  Just plan your life accordingly, knowing that it might be, say, 4 years after locating a great surgeon, or being referred to one and having your initial consultation before your actual surgery.

I think I met w/ my surgeon for the first time my junior year in college (b/c I refused to get braces in college!), and he removed my wisdom teeth the November after I graduated from undergrad, removed my premolars a few months after that and made me wait until the bone healed fully before sending me off to the orthodontist.  The orthodontist slapped on my metal grills in April the year after I graduated from undergrad...and my teeth did a very slow waltz into their assigned spots for a year and a half, during which time crowding in my lower bite was relieved, and I guess my upper teeth were lined up to eventually match my lower teeth.
I was finally cleared for surgery in the fall of 2007, scheduled for the operation in November of 2007, and insurance played the passive-aggressive biatch game on me.  Then more rescheduling, lots of tears and consultations about possibly doing the operation at the county hospital instead of at the university/teaching hospital where my surgeon was the head of the department, and visits to the head honcho in charge of insurance at my job, some threatening calls to the insurance company to move to a different insurance provider (thanks to the head honcho lady's compassion for my state) ensued.  On top of that, letters from my doctor indicating how this is a necessary procedure to elevate my quality of life to the basic level (ability to eat in public, chew my food instead of swallowing bits and letting my innards deal with under-masticated food, thus increasing stress to my internal organs and reducing nutrient consumption, the pain of the debilitating migraines and tension headaches caused by this misalignment, the progression of damage to my temporomandibular joint, etc,) were sent, and I cried and felt like I wasted the past 3 years of my life preparing for this and it wouldn't happen b/c I couldn't afford it out of pocket, and paid the higher cost of PPO plan for nothing, etc.
Then finally, I was approved for insurance coverage and scheduled into the operating room, did all my blood work, got an in-depth physical to make sure I would survive the surgery, signed all the release forms, then they needed the operating room for something more emergent, like a heart transplant or some other life-saving surgery, so I got rescheduled.  The 30 days passed after my check up and blood work, I got rescheduled and had to get another physical and more blood work to verify that I am still healthy enough to likely survive the operation.
Then it happened.  I was told a few days before the surgery that it'll take btwn 7 and 8 hours, my doctor had practiced a couple times on the plaster casts they took of my teeth/jaws.  The morning of the surgery, I was told they're not doing the genioplasty anymore b/c they didn't think it was absolutely necessary to remedy the migraines/tension headaches caused by stress on the facial muscles, so the surgery would be 6 hours.  I woke up 10 hours later, at around 4 pm or 5 pm in the afternoon, and looked at the clock in the operating room and decided I lost my ability to add/subtract/count, b/c no matter how much counting I did, it had been more than 6 hours since I was conscious that morning (assuming I hadn't been under for over 24 hours).  Then I passed out again.  When I came to, apparently about 40 minutes later, I was wheeled to my ICU bed...and was so proud of myself for remembering the word "nauseous."  I felt like throwing up and it's very, very bad to throw up when your whole head and upper torso is swollen from the trauma of bone-breaking surgery...thankfully, I was so swollen they couldn't wire my jaw shut like they had planned.  So I uttered the only word I could manage, "nauseous," and the orderlies told me they'll get the nurse to get me something for the nausea as soon as I got to my ICU bed.
At the ICU, it was bad.  They hooked me up to a morphine pump which I needed to deal w/ the pain as the anesthesia wore off, I was immobile.  My jaw, my head and upper torso was so swollen I couldn't physically shut my jaw for a month.  It was awful.  I had a morphine pump in my left hand that reset every 10 minutes and delivered 1 mg of morphine per pump...I pumped it endlessly b/c I couldn't figure out if 10 minutes had passed and I was in so much pain.  I had a suction wand in my right hand to suction the blood clumps out of my mouth/throat so I don't choke on my own blood.  My right hip hurt for some reason.  I had a catheter.  I found both my inner forearms bruised a dark blue...had an artery line in the left wrist that hurt.  I had monitors taped to my chest and the heart monitor clipped to my left index finger.  The heart monitor hurt and pinched so I unclipped it...and a nurse came running over to scold me about keeping it on.  I guess they thought I had flat-lined. They didn't let me even have a sip of water.  I wasn't allowed to eat or drink anything in case they needed to reoperate on me.
Turned out that I wasn't insane and stupid when I woke up, my surgery was 10 hours, not 6 hours as planned.  My surgeon explained to me the next day that when they had finished, I was bleeding so profusely from one side that he made the decision in the operating room to reoperate immediately instead of waking me up, and observing me to see if the bleeding would stop.  I was so grateful he did that.  So it took longer than anticipated.  He never told me which side they needed to open back up to take care of the bleeding, but I suspect it's the lower left.  And that's why I lost feeling/had nerve damage there, why I needed to have the plate removed from there a year after the operation and the residual swelling 6 years later.
And if I could go back 10 yrs to decide whether I'd go through it all, I'd make the same decision, knowing the pain, the heartache and the expense of it all.  Totally worth it to be able to eat my food like a human being.

Now...this moving to Korea to work in a large law firm in the Korean corporate culture...if I knew a year ago, I'm sure I'd have made a different decision.

Thursday, March 6, 2014

doubting my sanity

..I'm not in a good place.  Today, I had the blood drain from my head, from my arms and down my legs and soak away out of my body, leaving me shaking with shock and feeling betrayed.  Betrayed by this machine called the computer, that I trust to keep all of my documents, my work product, the things that happen to define in an undeniably significant portion who I am a member of society.
I thought I had lost a document I've been working on for the past week, a draft of a submission due next Friday, mere 8 days from now.  I couldn't find it anywhere.  I had distinct memories of when I had worked on it, last, I mean early this morning, before I switched gears to draft a document that needs to be turned in tomorrow.  I felt insane, like I had fallen completely off my rocker and rolled a mile away before I realized that I wasn't right in my head.  I had distinct memories of changing the title of the document from "...OUTLINE..." to "...draft."  I even remembered working on it before I attended a call with an expert on the other side of the planet, at 11:30 pm, and then coming back to it after the call.  If it weren't for the tale-tell signs that the call occurred and I hadn't imagined or dreamed it all, in the form of my hand-written notes during the call, I would have just accepted it as fact that I hadn't actually done any work but somehow imagined about 10 hours worth of drafting work, and perhaps another 10 hours of client meetings and 10 hours of reviewing documents in 3 different languages (1 which I'm fluent in, 1 which I can read with some difficulty and 1 which I have no clue how to decipher).  Thank God for hand-written notes, visible evidence to keep me grounded...even as my head floats away into the clouds of self doubt and utter confusion.

So, why did I react so viscerally, shaking, crying and confused and lost and exasperated and devastated by the loss of a document that wasn't even close to completion and even further from perfection?  B/c I'm not in a good place.  I lost my cool, my hold on reality, the assurance that I am not imagining things, in reaction to something that happens every once in a while to everyone who relies on technology.  Why?  Perhaps b/c I'm weak-minded; b/c I'm actually teetering on the edge of sanity and I am vaguely aware of my instability; b/c I haven't eaten a meal all day for fear of upsetting my sensitive stomach; b/c I've been consuming more caffeinated liquids than water or any other fluids in the past weeks; maybe b/c I haven't had a single day away from work in the past few weeks; b/c I haven't been feeling well but was "too busy" to actually rest, diagnose what's wrong or recover; b/c I haven't been able to sleep from stress, nervousness, physical discomforts; perhaps b/c I haven't exercised or moved or stretched my body for months; or b/c my "bosses" keep increasing in ranks and numbers, pushing down piles and mountains of insurmountable work but no one seems to want to do the grunt work.
Or maybe all those are just excuses for a disorganized, uncontrolled, directionless life.  Do I have work-life balance?  Don't even know what that means anymore.  I feel like any other job would be a paid vacation to me at this point.

But the bottom line is that something is not well.  I'm not being fed and nurtured as a whole human being, and the imbalance is breaking my poor body and threatening my addling mind.  The author of Ecclesiastes, the famed King Solomon of ancient Israel, notes that it's "meaningless!  meaningless!"  that it's all a "chasing after the wind."  That imagery holds a crazy person whose last few screws have twisted out of their grooves and have long ago fallen out as the person endeavored to catch the wind.  Is that person me?  Why am I here?  What am I doing?  What keeps me here and what am I supposed to learn from this phase of my life?  That life, indeed, is meaningless?  That everything I do is a chasing after the winds?  Wisdom is meaningless, fame is meaningless, prestige is meaningless, the acceptance and approval of others is meaningless, a great work product is meaningless?  Perhaps, maybe so...I just don't know.  But I know one thing.  "all is not well...something is rotten in the state of Denmark."  (Hamlet, Act I, Scenes 2 and 4)

Sunday, December 1, 2013

Not interested in dating. TYVM.

What part of "I don't want to date" don't they understand?  Sheesh.  WTF? 
I heard my aunt talking to my mom this morning in the living room as I was getting ready for work, and she was saying how she wants to set me up with one of her friends' sons.  I'm not interested.  I don't care how rich the family is, it's not what I want to do.  In fact, that guy my friend introduced me to, who's been in Korea an even shorter time than me, seems to be thinking that this is some sort of a set-up intro, not the "friends of mine, you're both Korean-Americans who are new to Seoul, meet up and rant about your frustrations" intro that I thought my college friend meant.  I'm kinda weirded out.  I don't want to be rude, or to rebuff a friendship, but I really am not interested in dating.  Sorry.  Not in Korea, this is not permanent and I'm not looking to settle down. 
Back to my aunt.  She brought my mom a couple things to take back to the US, she's my dad's younger sister, immediately below him in age-order, and I believe the same age as my mom.  The store she owns is across the street from where my brother and I live, and she parks in our building.  My mom was asking her where a good dentist is, and where to find a few things my mom is looking for.  But she just had to start talking about me and my cousins that she's interested in setting up and marrying off.  WHY? 
Here's why I really don't want to go along with this.  My aunt's a little peeved that one of my male cousins rejected such a set-up by the parents/parents' friends and connections (called "suhn" or 선 in Korean), on the account that the girl was a little chubby.  My aunt attended that same girl's wedding this past April and she was so upset that my male cousin rejected the girl after 1 meeting on account of her being a little chubby, because apparently the family is a great family that controls the fruits and vegetables that are distributed to all the markets around Korea, are great Christians and give generously to charitable causes (indicating good hearts), and the girl lost all her extra weight and was gorgeous on her wedding day.  To be perfectly honest, I think my cousin should have given the girl a chance, met up with her a few more times, b/c to say he's not interested in her just b/c she was a little chubby at the time is very shallow of him.  I'm kinda disappointed in him about that point, especially since her family seemed like such great people, not even counting the wealth b/c money is just money.  My counsin is engaged to another girl now, and they're to marry in January or February of next year.  She's nice enough, but she seems a little oblivious to the workings of the world, but her mom kinda stuck her nose in where she shouldn't have with my aunt, and now my aunt isn't happy with the way things turned out.  I DON'T WANT SOMETHING LIKE THAT HAPPENING TO ME!
So, I want them to understand that I'm not interested in dating, and especially not interested in being set up.  Frankly, my aunt will have another belly ache and complain some more a year or so later when that guy she set me up with marries some other girl and she thinks I've lost out on a great husband material.  I actually don't think she even knows the guy in person, she knows his parents.  So better not to even start.  But now my mom wants me to just go meet him once, and to say no after that meeting, so my aunt doesn't go on about how I won't even listen to her and see this son of her friends.  Nope.  Sorry.  I didn't come to Korea to be set up or to date around.  I'm just not interested.  I will pull out all my hair and act insane if they force me to go on these ridiculous set-ups by grown ups.  F.that.

Friday, October 18, 2013

Shitty things, shockingly unethical

I knew that the "great people" we applaud and award prizes and awards and recognition to all stand on the shoulders of those who have come before them, either in public or behind the scenes.  It's inevitable, eventually someone will get the recognition that they may not fully deserve.  But it's shocking to the sense of ethics and justice to witness people take complete and full recognition for the works of others (especially for someone who listed "justice" as a passion in her high school senior graduation survey, among other things, that was quoted by the guidance counsellor's speach).

Plagarism is the worst evil in academics and, as someone who is a member of a very "academic" and "intellectual" profession such as law, I see plagarism to be the most offensive and cowardly act of anyone who has gone through the rigors of a formal legal education.  One example of plagarism that one of my undergraduate professors have relayed to me is when a daughter and a current student submitted a paper that her mother had written.  This act would have gone unnoticed except that the paper was submitted to the very same professor who read it the first time it was submitted.  Yes, crazy idea, but it's happened in real life and that was described to me as plagarism.  Both the mother and daughter were shamed, the dauther for plagarising, and the mother for permitting it and being a poor example to her daughter.
Now, you say that would never happen, right?  Think again.  It's happened.  To me this very week.  And it's demoralizing and I have lost respect for the partners I work for.  Yes.  I said it.  If they happen upon this post and decide to fire me for defaming them, then 1) I have not named them so it'll be their guilt that turns them in, and 2) it's not defamation if it's true.  Check the defition, assholes.

The legal profession, however different from the American legal education (here, I should correct myself and say the United State of America's Juris Doctorate program of study), is highly collaborative.  Yes, there are solo lawyers and solo practicioners, but even they help each other out and cover for each other in court.  I've seen it happen.  But in a larger firm structure, to make sure there is no mistake uncaught, there are several pairs of eyes and several sets of brains all working on court filings and cases and deals.  It's a wonder why JD students are prevented from collaboration in our first year legal writing memos and briefs, but that's a different discussion for a different day.  So yes, there is plagarism to a degree in that the same stock motions and complaints and requests for arbitration and whatnot gets recycled with the new facts and perhaps the new case law (if someone does the additional research).  That's firm property and part of the collaborative effort.  Okay, fine.  I've even drafted simple legal documents and power of attorneys using great examples of those that saved their work to the document management system, when I was a paralegal and was widely praised for my abilities to merge several great examples into one that is appropriate for our purposes.

That doesn't mean that anyone is off the hook for giving credit where it's due.  Yes, the whole world jokes (only half jokingly) that lawyers are a dishonest, scumbag bunch.  But I take the 2 oaths to be an ethical officer of the courts of Illinois and Georgia quite seriously.  When I was a prosecutor and took that oath, I reminded myself of it as I made decisions on cases and even looked up the Brady case to make sure what I was doing wasn't violating someone else's rights.  Ethics matter to me, and call me naive, but it should matter to everyone.  If it didn't, why the charades?  Everyone pretends to be ethical and upstanding and only those who play that facade well get to be respected.

Sharing of ideas, formats of court filings and boilerplate contract provisions, etc is undeniably distinct from a collection of information and research written for publication.  The reason why professors at research universities are pressured to publish is because it is a way of showing that they are trustworthy sources of academic theories and they have done the work.  It's a way of showing the work, to put it in math class terms.  So it shows the world and the school administrators that the professor is good enough to teach the students that enroll at the school, and that the professor is deserving of the tenure track position, the office space and the honor they are receiving.  BUT, if those ideas are all stolen, aka, plagarized, then it's all a sham, no?  That professor is not only undeserving of the honor, the tenured position, the salary and the right to teach young minds as a member of that institution, but also is a thief and undesrving of respect from the academic community and their students and society in general. 
In simpler words, you not only lose the recognition you unjustly and unethically held, but you also are debased even lower than if you had never had that recognition, because of your despicable actions.

So recap, we've established that 1) Plagarism is lowly, dispicable and unethical, 2) one form of plagarism is ursurping credit unfairly, 3) ethics is important, and 4) members of the legal community should be upstanding and ethical or at least those qualities are seen as a necessary component to gain respect.
With those 4 things in mind, consider what has happened.  Two associates work tirelessly to complete the very difficult task of researching, gathering, digesting and regurgitating an area of legal practice that is still mostly unexplored.  Essentially, to become experts on the topic for a moment and give fresh insight in the form of an article to be published by a publication that covers such topics across the world.  Not easy, but the two associates give up their weekends with their families, to rest up from the week before and recharge their batteries and juggled their practice and participation in the religion of their choice, working into the wee hours of the night.  Then two partners, one of whom put literally zero work or effort into the completed publication, and the other who gave suggestions and demanded extra research on unmentioned points, take full credit, as the only authors.
Now, they may think that the associates are paid a handsome salary.  True, but compared to the hours spent on work the hourly or per diem rate is fairly low, and not even the relevant point here.  If the partners believe that a simple payment of a salary is fair compesation for usurping credit from the proper parties, then that is the very definition of plagarism.

Recall that anecdote (true story, actually) I mentioned in the second paragraph, supra.  The mother gave her daughter a paper she wrote for college and the duo were caught in the act of plagarism.  Now, if instead of the mother giving it to her daughter, what if the mother paid someone to write the paper for her daughter?  Or, to remove the mother entirely from this scenario, what if the daughter paid a "smart nerd" who she found on line, to write that paper for her.  Is the daughter in any of these variations less guilty of plagarism?  No.  Plagarism is taking what you did not write and pretending that it your original work.  That is plagarism of the whole. 
The more common forms of plagarism is when a student intentionally or unintentionally copies an idea, a theory or a sentence from another source, published or unpublished, and fails to cite the proper source, and thus fails to give credit where it's due.  I have a very, very intelligent friend who made this mistake, and it was an honest mistake.  She missed a cite in a final paper in college.  She went before the school ethics board and was suspended for a semester.  She had dreams of going to medical school that she had to give up.  She spent the next seven years in limbo, not able to attend medical school, working as research assistant at various medical school programs and for doctors, until she rebuilt her history and her credibility.  An honest mistake that led to unintentional plagarism had such far-reaching negative impact on a young, well-meaning scholar.  I can honestly say that she is one of the most billiant minds I have ever met in my life and it pained me to move on with my life as I saw her struggle, all for a simple mistake and a cold-hearted, stickler professor.  Another professor we both knew and admired even went to her ethics board hearing to speak on her behalf, to testify that my friend is an upstanding student who she knew well to be honest and ethical.  Thankfully, my friend's hard work paid off and she is now a medical student and despite the delay I see an amazing, passionate surgeon emerging in a few years.  I am incredibly proud of her and very happy that she didn't let that misstep trip her up for life, and I admire the fighting spirit in her.

Those are the consequences of plagarism, even when it's unintended and as simple as a typo.  Now go back to the work of the two associates and the theft of recognition by two partners, who may justify it with the fact that the associates are paid a salary.  How is that different from the daughter paying someone else to write a paper on her behalf.  Plagarism of the whole.
I daresay that intentional, blatant plagarism of the whole is far worse than the unintended mistake of a sleep-deprived college student during finals season.  And the punishment should be proprotional to the severity of the bad act, here the unethical act.  My friend suffered a seven year delay in starting her dream and her career.  What do the partners deserve?  I'm not asking what I know they'll get, but what do they deserve?  It's not about how important this article is, how big or small of an impact it will have, but I'm talking about the principle and the ease with which they plagarized, and probably have done before. 
It disgusts me to know it happens.  It makes me sick that it's happened to me, and I have lost all respect for these two partners and it will make it difficult for me to put out the best work possible.  A demoralized spirit is difficult to revive and no amount of financial compensation (bribery) will be able to make up for it.  These people suck and I hope their fraud is discovered soon.

The longer I'm here, the more I experience this place, the less I like it.  My fondness for the rare hardworking and honorable people I find here grows yet my general feeling towards this work place is that it's hostile and teeming with greed, insecurities and cowards.  The sad part is that those cowards and insecure assholes are the ones in charge and I see no positive future here.
A veritable den of vipers, where sooner or later, you'll be bitten.

Friday, September 6, 2013

Friday/Saturday Midnight...

Still at the office on a Friday Saturday morning.  Eating the other half of my $35 meal...Squid Ink Risotto from Grove Lounge.  It's cold now.  And it's a little on the fishy side, but I figure the Koreans probably like it this way.

Korean women (maybe men too, but haven't been in their bathroom) brush their teeth after lunch every day, and keep a toothbrush at the office.  Actually, I was puzzled at first when I saw tubes of toothpaste at the bathroom sinks, and I thought someone must have left it there.  But I think it's actually provided by the company or the building and there are multiple tubes of the same toothpaste at both sink areas on either side of the women's room.  I see many of the secretaries keep their toothbrush in a cup in the cabinet under the bathroom sink.  I don't brush my teeth after lunch.  I feel like an uncivilized monster, only brushing my teeth twice a day, as recommended by the ADA.

Then, I wonder what Korean women (and possibly men) do after they go out to dinner?  Do they carry a toothbrush around?

Monday, September 2, 2013

Longest 2 Months of my Life

It's been the longest two months of my life.  Three if you count June.

I had other strange Korean things list, but I'll do that later.  It's 3:15 am here in Seoul, fyi.  I'm still at work, fyi.  And I wish with all my might that I was back in the US, whatever job I'd have at this point.  Probably the same ADA position in Savannah, trying to get back to Atl, maybe weaseling my way into a Solicitor General's Office in the Atl metro area.

I signed a 24 month contract, and I've completed 2 of those 24 months.  But I feel like it should be more than that.  I am so tired.  I am so lonely and often heartbroken.  And as he inches away, the chasm in my heart grows.  I kept telling myself that I need to wait it out, give it a fair chance, but I keep wondering, still, if I've made a prudent choice.  Did I allow myself to be wooed by the siren call of a biglaw job, the title of an "international" lawyer?  Perhaps.  Is 2 months long enough, fair enough for me to judge the situation?  Or need I wait a few more months before I make up my mind?

I've accepted long ago that I'll never have a true home on this earth.  Since then, more recently, I've longed for a home of a different kind, something, someone, to anchor me to a location, to give me a reason to stay instead of flitting away to the next destination.  I'm just so tired, and I think if my heart had a home, it won't be so bad that my body doesn't have a home.