“Back to school… back to school…”

[quote]”…to prove to Dad, that I’m not a fool”[/quote]

By Chris H.

Points if you recognize the above movie quote correctly.

Well, internet readers, here we are at the end of summer 2010. Leaves are turning, they finally managed to get rid of the last of the summer students still hanging around until the “bitter end”. I put quotes around it because I have literally had this conversation about twenty times in the last few weeks:

“Hey, when are you working until?”

“August 27th.”

“oooh… the bitter end!”

Why do we think of the end as being “bitter”? I don’t feel bitter in the slightest. If anything I would say it feels bittersweet. As I look back on the summer, I’m thankful for having had the experience, and a little sad to be leaving. But I’m also very excited to get back to the student lifestyle, especially since I am leaving on Monday for an exchange term in the Netherlands. Having had a taste of work life, I’m sure all of us will appreciate student life a heck of a lot more and really get the most out of third year. Both academically speaking and in terms of my grand plans to sleep in more and grow a beard.

I wanted to leave the blog with a few reflections on my time as a summer student. I choose to present them in the form of me being interviewed by Barbara Walters.

Hello, we’re here tonight with Chris, up until recently a summer student at Toronto law firm Cassels Brock and Blackwell.

Good to be here, Babs.

Tell me, what was the hardest part of being a summer student?

The constant fear that you have no idea what you’re doing. After a while, though, I started to get more comfortable. I realized we’re not supposed to know anything about what practice is actually like and that’s why we’re here: to learn. There’s a reason our job title includes “student”.

Also the exhaustion. I found the transition from my usual student sleep schedule to work life was very jarring. I drank a lot of coffee. It’s definitely an adjustment.

What were the highlights of your summer?

Oh my gosh, so many to choose from. Work-wise here’s three:

  • Going to small claims court to watch a litigator with 40+ years experience, appearances at the SCC and a QC designation argue and win on motions that I helped draft.
  • Attending two full days of an examination for discovery in a franchise litigation file I had done some work on.
  • Putting together an application to appeal a recent CRTC decision, which involved lots of direct client contact.

And of course extra-curricularly, there were highlights as well. The bbq/pool-party we had about halfway through the summer when Keri and Carolyn switched, our magical mystery wine tour to Niagara and our wildly successful firm talent show in support of Holland Bloorview Kids Rehab are the ones I will remember for a long time.

Can I get in touch with you and ask any questions about OCIs or generally how to be awesome?

Why, that’s strange that you’d be interested in that Barbara, but of course. Drop me a line anytime at 3ch27@queensu.ca

Final question, and it’s a toughie: what was the “song of the summer”?

Wow. That is a tough question. This was not like last summer, where if you thought the song of the summer was anything other than “I Gotta Feeling” I would’ve said you lived under a rock and instantly lost all faith in your ability to appreciate music. It was kind of a weak year, there wasn’t really a stand out candidate. My favourite album was probably Arcade Fire’s “The Suburbs” but I’m a firm believer that the song of the summer has to have gotten play on top-40 radio. Drake was big, the Bieb was doin’ his thing, Taio Cruz came out of nowhere to be all over the radio. I would almost give to “California Gurls” by Katy Perry… but I hate that song.

If for no other reason than they played it every time Jose Bautista stepped to the plate, the song of the summer of 2010 was “OMG” by Usher. Congratulations, Mr. Raymond. You can add this to your resume.

That’s all the time we have for tonight, thanks for joining us.

The pleasure was all mine.

(end scene)

That’s all folks. Good luck to all the aspiring summer students (and aspiring summer student bloggers) with your applications, and thanks to my many, many fans and readers, especially Zach, Leigh-Ann, John Gillies and my Mom, all of whom read every single post.

And I’m gone…

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