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Show-off law student litterer

BusinesslawA guy in his mid-20s steps on the Red Line north at about 7:45 p.m., lugging a bag of heavy books. He's good looking, with medium complexion, wearing faux ghetto clothing.

He makes a big scene about opening his over-stuffed bag of books, and show-offishly pulls out his Business Law book, then a different law book, then his notebook.

Just as quickly he puts everything away in his twitchy, ostentatious way.

He leaves behind on the floor an orange Trojan condom that fell out of his bag.


what a choad.

Ha! Classic.

Oh my! LOL

Sounds like a classy guy.

Glad he's not reproducing.

Why is this anecdote intereting?

How exactly did he cause this "big scene" and could you elaborate on "show offishly" ? Did he make lots of noise and try to draw attention to himself? Was she shuffling lots of papers? Did he look around trying to make eye contact??

Compared to the other face-off posts and such this one is rather weak

I am a lawyer and when I see law students doing that I have a certain sympathy for them. I mean, believe it or not, first year of law school is terrifying, mostly because EVERYONE did really well in college, and SOMEONE is going to be at the bottom of the law class. Also, the professors are working to make people think like lawyers instead of like people. It means law students start their careers insecure and confused. Helps me understand why they sometimes try to show people not in the know how important they are.

That or I think they are assholes.

Well Tom, life is like that. Some days are more interesting than others. And some of my posts are more interesting than others.

The guy made a "big scene" by being very "out-there" about dragging every book out of his bag, and then putting them back without even reading them. It was like he was trying to tell all the riders: "Hey! I'm a law school student! Ain't I cool!"

To David: I don't think any one person is more important than another. Particularly people who go out of their way to try to show you just how important they are.

Chicago Tom:

Are you a law student? Do you wear faux ghetto garb and show off your law school literature?

Anyway, the humor resides in the fact that this up and coming Johnny Cochran (RIP) seems to have no purpose in pulling out his law school books besides looking the part of a bad ass. This is not bad ass, but, in eyes of this Yo-Pro, a desperate cry for recognition.

Regarding your request to have the situation explained, well my friend, that is why the CTA Tattler "regulars" are faithful readers -- stories are posted and in turn the reader interprets. Do you have no imagination? I wasn't there, however I can see this douch-bag trying his hardest to make sure others on the train notice his big-time law schoold books.

Lastly, the piece about the rubber falling out of this soon to be big-shot attorney's bag? Nothing? That isn't at all funny in your opinion? Check your pulse.

Best regards.


Although I understand not all stories are at the same interest level, I still didn't see anything inherently funny about this particular post. (As opposed to many other posts I have read here that actually made me laugh out loud). Reading this post made me feel as if you were passing quite a bit of judgement for someone who simply re-arranged his books. It came off as downright mean (IMHO). I know I personally have re-arranged my books when I was a student riding the train for any number of reasons. In any case without the proper level of detail to show how we was showing off about being a lawyer it seems more like it is you who is going out of your way to judge rather than this person calling attention to himself and in a way asking for it. (I wasn't there to witness it, but based on the account it doesnt seem like he did anything to warrant some kind of mocking)

1. That's a lot of judgement to be passing on what seems like very little action on this law students part. Again, maybe in reality he did do something obnoxious, but this post doesn't give readers a sense of anything he did to warrant the scorn.

2. please dont assume I am not a "regular" reader just because I don't post often. I read tattler every day. And I do have imagination. But imagination is guided by prose. The text of this article didnt give a level of detail to allow me to visualize. I cant imagine myself there if there arent enought details. If the details werent important, then why would I need the blog post at all, I would just try to imagine my own made up funny scenarios on the train.

3. Ok, Ill admit leaving the condom behind was funny. But not funny enough to make the post interesting.

I liked this post. I saw a med. student doing something similar a few weeks ago. We were the an SB Red Line, and she was wearing her little med school jacket, she was picking lint off of it and fingering the embroidery on it.

While she was doing this, she kept looking around to see if anyone was looking at her in her little smock. I guess we were all supposed to be in awe of her med student status.

She got off at Chicago, presumably to walk to NW. I understand it's a big accomplishment to get into med school, but to expect strangers on the L to be impressed with you is a bit much.

Everyone who wasn't a little bit of an annoyingly pretentious goober when you were in college & grad school raise your hands...

....that's what I thought!

I normally let comments like ChicagoTom slide by but I just had to say something. Christine is right. How many times did you pull out a class book on the train strategically holding it so everybody could see the title of the book and be in "awe" that you're in school? Or a teacher grading papers on the train, or lawyer reading documents? The fact is how productive can you be studying/grading/reading on a train when people are bumping you left and right? That was the humor that I got out of that story.

To all: Each of us interprets things in different ways. And none of us is wrong. Chicago Tom didn't find this post very interesting, and asked me to explain it more. I did, and he still doesn't find it all that interesting. So be it.

Admittedly, not all my posts are "award-winners." But I do try to post something new at least Monday through Thursday, leaving Friday and Saturday as a day I usually share the best of your own stories. (On Sunday I rest.)

On this particular post, this guy was on the train for such a short period of time that I didn't get much chance to see much more than I reported. I did omit one detail: For part of the ride, he was holding a Blackberry up to his ear, listening to what I think was music, because we were in the tunnel, so he couldn't be talking to someone. More boorish behavior at any rate, to go with the condom dropping.

Finally, I have to say I love you and all your comments and perspectives. Keep reading. I'll keep posting what I see, and some days will be mroe interesting than others. So be it.

I thought it was a funny post...and a humbling one. It reminded me of when I was a music student many years ago. What a fashion-victim little Goth Girl was I. I used to sit on the Boston's T with a full book of manuscript paper, scribbling down notes for my masterpieces, certain of my coolness. Now I realize I was an obnoxious, pretentious goober.

Sometimes when I see modern versions of my youthful self on the el being cool, I want to tap them on the shoulder & quietly whisper to them, "Take a good look, sweetie. In twenty years, this is you!" That would scare the bejezzus out of them!

ce n'est pas une pipe

it's perspective.

Ha! Maybe he's never used either the books or the condom!

Don't feel bad about these kinds of posts - this site is great and it has tons of readers regardless of what a few people think. Personally I find posts like this refreshing every once and a while, because otherwise it would all just be about people acting crazy on the train. This story just analyzed a rider whose "showmanship" was a little more subtle than most. I appreciate that.

posts don't have to be funny or interesting. these are just your observations of what you see on CTA, right? okay, so, you saw this. and you wrote about it. that's cool. i don't think there's a real need to analyze the motives so much - it is what it is. i appreciate that you posted it. thanks!

As a law student who just finished the last exam of my first year, I find this post hilarious! I know just the type of person you describe in the post because I spend tons of time with them in class every week.

Please have a little empathy for us though, at least during this time of year. I know that I have been a zombie for the past couple weeks and have probably done strange things as well!


The med student you saw probably just got her lab coat. They get them in a ceremony when they're about to start doing rotations through the hospitals. They wear them everywhere for a while, but it wears off after a few months.

Like Cosby said about train systems, "there's a nut in every car"; similarly, as ChicagoTom shows us, "there's a pedant on every discussion group."

I personally was not an annoyingly pretentious goober when I was in University and Grad school! To assume that everybody had that attitude is just a way for you to accept your own behavior. When I was there I showed up on time, mopped and waxed the floors, and kept to myself until quitting time -- Sometimes I did sneak a cigar if I was lucky enough to er um find one. I acted that way all the way up to the time I got laid off - damn budget cuts.
One question though: How did they know the condom was orange flavored?

I used to be in grad school and lugged around bags stuffed full of books. I hated it. Worse, I lived at one end of Chicago and commuted for school and teaching to the other end, every day, on the train. When I read this description, I wondered if the guy was simply redistributing all the stuff in his backpack so it would fit better. I've done that occasionally and always felt like a bag lady rearranging all her earthly possessions while the movers and shakers breezed by me unencumbered.

Yeah, it's possible that maybe he was trying to project the message, "I am in law school! Bow down before me NOOOOWWWWW!" Most likely, though, he was probably just fantasizing about dropping those heavy books on the tracks and walking away without a care in the world.

As for the reading on the bus/train...while my reading material is probably more literate than this week's issue of People, I generally don't flaunt it, because I just kind of value my privacy. In fact, once I was reading Portnoy's Complaint and inexplicably felt embarrassed by certain passages simply because I was afraid a random seatmate might glance down at the page completely out of context and wonder what kind of obscene, anti-Semitic profanity young girls in their early twenties were consuming.

I am a 3-L at a Midwestern law school. Why, why, oh, why does everyone feel the need to mock and judge everyone else in law school?

Law school is the most hostile snake pit of an experience I have ever had.

Every one is posturing. The professors act like they are God (newsflash - they are not God, nor even Kingsfield in the Paper Chase) the law review people start taking themselves way too seriously (just because you landed on the top of the heap in the first year at answering hypothetical questions written by God-wannabes who you have been sucking up to all year does not place you in a special elite class of human beings) the bottom 2/3rds gets demoralized and nastier than they were when they got there.

Yuck, is what I have to say, 3 years into it, yuck, yuck, and yuck.

I think I see a certain debased depravity in our school that is permeating the country. Are there too many law schools graduating too many nasty, snotty, people full of themselves because they won a race?

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