You are a Lawyer. But Who Made You Holier-Than-Thou?


Are the words “Earn Me” such a difficult concept to grasp? We are not entitled to anything. The universe does not owe us anything. Society however, finds it hard to catch up to this. And for some people, if not a lot, it’s an idea that is hard to grasp with.

See, just because you’re a lawyer doesn’t mean people ought to kneel before you to worship your intelligence and your lawyer-iness. You are not a ‘Your Grace’ or ‘Your Highness’, your IBP identification card is not a magic card of outright life privileges, the title before your name does not mean no one is to cross you as you go about your routine and the mere fact that you’re a lawyer does not mean that you are Holier-Than-Thou-Who-Is-Not-A-Lawyer. 

Not that I am dissing lawyers. I am a lawyer too. And it gives me all sorts of pride that I am. I am proud that I graduated from one of the best law schools in the country; that I am part of the batch of Bar passers with the second lowest passing rate in history (as of now); and that despite how passive I can be with my readings (and believe me I am) I not only passed the Bar Examinations the first time I took it, I made it to the original six percent of the passers without any grade falling below 50%.  (I still wonder how that came to be. But I think my indifference greatly helped me during the exam.)

But there’s a fine line between being proud and being a braggart. There is also a world of sameness between being a braggart and being an elitist. One thing leads to another and often, the words blur together. And I hate elitism and elitists. The fact that I am partly surrounded by such people since I was sixteen makes me frown at them more.

I cringe at the elitist bragging. Maybe it was meant as a joke, but the fact that it was thought about and words did come out says a lot. It’s still frown-worthy. If I’d get a hundred Pesos for everytime I have to not-say to someone ‘So what if you’re a lawyer?’, I’d be binge shopping every now and then.

The law profession is an exclusive social circle. Does it sound so hypoctrical if I say that I like the fact that it is? Perhaps. But then I would defend myself by saying there’s a wall the size of the Great Wall of China between being proud of the exclusive membership and shoving it to people’s throats expecting to be treated oh-so-very-well simply because you are a member of that exclusive social circle.

Television shows glamorize the law profession too much. (I’m looking at you Suits.) So do we. It is a source of hypocritical, conflicting pride. I do realize that there are innate privileges to being in the law profession such as people being in mild awe at your accomplishment and (quickly) getting things others can’t.

It’s not that I’m being ideal. I am far from being an idealistic person (anyone who says otherwise do not know me at all).

What happened to humility? In Bisaya, hilas ra ka kaayo. I just hate elitism.




25 out of 100 ain’t bad

oh darling, let's be adventurers

The Big Read reckons that the average adult has only read 6 of the top 100 books they’ve printed.

a) Look at the list and bolden those you have read.
b) Underline those you intend to read.

  1. Pride and Prejudice – Jane Austen
  2. The Lord of the Rings – JRR Tolkien
  3. Jane Eyre – Charlotte Bronte
  4. Harry Potter series – JK Rowling
  5. To Kill a Mockingbird – Harper Lee 
  6. The Bible
  7. Wuthering Heights- Emily Bronte
  8. 1984 – George Orwell
  9. His Dark Materials – Philip Pullman
  10. Great Expectations – Charles Dickens
  11. Little Women – Louisa M Alcott
  12. Tess of the D’Urbervilles – Thomas Hardy
  13. Catch 22 – Joseph Heller
  14. Complete Works of Shakespeare
  15. Rebecca – Daphne Du Maurier
  16. The Hobbit – JRR Tolkien
  17. Birdsong – Sebastian Faulks
  18. Catcher in the Rye – JD Salinger
  19. The Time Traveller’s Wife – Audrey Niffenegger
  20. Middlemarch – George Eliot
  21. Gone With The Wind – Margaret Mitchell
  22. The Great Gatsby – F Scott Fitzgerald
  23. Bleak House – Charles Dickens
  24. War and Peace – Leo Tolstoy
  25. The Hitch Hiker’s Guide to the Galaxy – Douglas Adams
  26. Brideshead Revisited – Evelyn Waugh
  27. Crime and Punishment – Fyodor Dostoyevsky
  28. Grapes of Wrath – John Steinbeck
  29. Alice in Wonderland – Lewis Carroll
  30. The Wind in the Willows – Kenneth Grahame
  31. Anna Karenina – Leo Tolstoy
  32. David Copperfield – Charles Dickens
  33. Chronicles of Narnia – CS Lewis
  34. Emma – Jane Austen
  35. Persuasion – Jane Austen 
  36. The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe – CS Lewis
  37. The Kite Runner – Khaled Hosseini
  38. Captain Corelli’s Mandolin – Louis De Bernieres
  39. Memoirs of a Geisha – Arthur Golden
  40. Winnie the Pooh – AA Milne
  41. Animal Farm – George Orwell
  42. The Da Vinci Code – Dan Brown
  43. One Hundred Years of Solitude – Gabriel Garcia Marquez 
  44. A Prayer for Owen Meaney – John Irving
  45. The Woman in White – Wilkie Collins
  46. Anne of Green Gables – LM Montgomery
  47. Far From The Madding Crowd – Thomas Hardy
  48. The Handmaid’s Tale – Margaret Atwood
  49. Lord of the Flies – William Golding
  50. Atonement – Ian McEwan 
  51. Life of Pi – Yann Martel
  52. Dune – Frank Herbert
  53. Cold Comfort Farm – Stella Gibbons
  54. Sense and Sensibility – Jane Austen
  55. A Suitable Boy – Vikram Seth
  56. The Shadow of the Wind – Carlos Ruiz Zafon
  57. A Tale Of Two Cities – Charles Dickens
  58. Brave New World – Aldous Huxley
  59. The Curious Incident of the Dog in the Night-time – Mark Haddon
  60. Love In The Time Of Cholera – Gabriel Garcia Marquez
  61. Of Mice and Men – John Steinbeck
  62. Lolita – Vladimir Nabokov
  63. The Secret History – Donna Tartt
  64. The Lovely Bones – Alice Sebold
  65. Count of Monte Cristo – Alexandre Dumas
  66. On The Road – Jack Kerouac
  67. Jude the Obscure – Thomas Hardy
  68. Bridget Jones’s Diary – Helen Fielding
  69. Midnight’s Children – Salman Rushdie
  70. Moby Dick – Herman Melville
  71. Oliver Twist – Charles Dickens
  72. Dracula – Bram Stoker
  73. The Secret Garden – Frances Hodgson Burnett
  74. Notes From ASmallIsland- Bill Bryson
  75. Ulysses – James Joyce
  76. The Bell Jar – Sylvia Plath
  77. Swallows and Amazons – Arthur Ransome
  78. Germinal – Emile Zola
  79. Vanity Fair – William Makepeace Thackeray
  80. Possession – AS Byatt
  81. A Christmas Carol – Charles Dickens
  82. Cloud Atlas – David Mitchell
  83. The Color Purple – Alice Walker
  84. The Remains of the Day – Kazuo Ishiguro
  85. Madame Bovary – Gustave Flaubert
  86. A Fine Balance – Rohinton Mistry
  87. Charlotte’s Web – EB White
  88. The Five People You Meet In Heaven – Mitch Albom
  89. Adventures of Sherlock Holmes – Sir Arthur Conan Doyle
  90. The Faraway Tree Collection – Enid Blyton
  91. Heart of Darkness – Joseph Conrad
  92. The Little Prince – Antoine De Saint-Exupery
  93. The Wasp Factory – Iain Banks
  94. Watership Down – Richard Adams
  95. A Confederacy of Dunces – John Kennedy Toole
  96. A Town Like Alice – Nevil Shute
  97. The Three Musketeers – Alexandre Dumas
  98. Hamlet – William Shakespeare 
  99. Charlie and the Chocolate Factory by R. Dahl
  100. Les Miserables – Victor Hugo