Adam Avitable's mundane moments

My ten-year law school reunion OR holy shit I’m old.

When I got the email a few months ago from Washington University in Saint Louis, where I attended law school, informing me that my 10-year law school reunion is this weekend, I was floored. How the hell has it been 10 years already?

Washington University School of Law - Anheuser Busch Hall
Where I honed my elitism and pomposity to a razor edge

2001 – It doesn’t seem that long ago, but it really is. Who was I ten years ago?

Ten years ago, I was the nerd who taught myself how to use Flash and set up a Flash intro for my website. Click here to view it – make sure your sound is turned down low. I also created this *fantastic* Flash photo album, replete with *witty* captions. You can substitute “fucking terrible” for “fantastic” and “witty”.

I was 24 years old and had never had a full-time, permanent job. I’d worked since I was old enough to count money, but they were always jobs while I attended school. I had earned money by being a babysitter, a window washer, a telemarketer, a bag boy, a movie theater manager, a security officer, a webmaster, a graphic designer, a salesman, a researcher, an author, a camp counselor, a video rental clerk, a retail employee, an ebayer, and a thief. I didn’t drink, had never had a cigarette, and had dated less than ten people in my entire life.

In May of 2001, Amy and I moved to Los Angeles, moving into an apartment that I had never seen. In fact, I’d never stepped foot in the city until that May. It was a tough job market, and I was applying for any job I could find. In July, as I was about to take a job managing a local Blockbuster, I got a call from an attorney who I had met who had his own business. He wanted to start something new, and he put the entire responsibility of it in my hands. Two months later, I launched a brand new business as the sole employee, and over three years, learned the ins and outs of starting and building a business, branding, marketing, hiring, managing, and everything else you can imagine. It was a trial by fire, but I was hungry for it.

In October, I got married. Our guest list was cut by a third after 9/11, and there was an anthrax scare at the hotel where all the guests were staying, essentially keeping everyone confined while the Health Department investigated for an hour. It was still a fantastic time. We left the next day for a cruise to the Bahamas, which was miserable, and it’s barely over ten years later that I will be going on my second cruise ever, hoping for a better experience.

It was in 2001 that I created the image that graced my header of my blog for 6 years:

Adam and Hitler eat ice cream

Along with several other less successfully Photoshopped images:

Adam Avitable as Homer Simpson

JFK and Amy

Adam Avitable as Yoda

I didn’t blog, per se, but I owned and maintained a website that I would update with photos, information about my life, and links that I found interesting. I wrote everything in HTML by hand, and would email my friends and family whenever I updated it. Even though I consider my blog anniversary to start counting from June 2004, in reality, I’ve been doing it since 1998.

I even wrote fanfic, which I talked about years ago.

There was no Twitter or Facebook. Yahoo, Livejournal, and Altavista’s image search had relevance. I had slowly started getting rid of the hundreds of VHS tapes I had in lieu of DVDs. My only cell phone was an emergency phone with 100 prepaid minutes on it.

And now, in a blink, it’s ten years later. This weekend, I’ll be revisiting the place where I got my degree, where I met the woman who would become my wife, and then my ex-wife, where my adult life really, truly started. I will be on a panel talking to law students about alternative careers for lawyers, and not alternative like dressing in drag, although having painted toenails is probably pretty close. Am I going to fit in with my peers, most of whom have been practicing law for the last ten years? Eh, it doesn’t matter. I’m used to being that guy – the one who’s a bit different, who doesn’t really do things like everyone else. I’m the clown, the prankster, the geek, the jeans and Hawaiian shirt amidst a sea of suits and blazers. I’m the one who took my exams so quickly that there was a betting pool on how fast it would take me. I’m that guy who played Monopoly in the library the night before a paper was due because my priorities are out of whack. And finally, since it’s going to be a high of 40 degrees there, I’m the guy who’s going to be really fucking cold.

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22 Replies to “My ten-year law school reunion OR holy shit I’m old.”

  1. Sheila

    That school must assume that you lawyer types have a lot of money and a lot of free time if they only gave you a one week notice.

    On another note, in 2001 I didn’t have my driver’s license or a high school diploma.

  2. Becky

    I’m all kinds of disappointed that you will be here in St. Louis this weekend and I’m busy with the girls and won’t have time to meet you for a drink somewhere, you know, if you were interested, not saying that you would be, but I guess it doesn’t really matter. I’d bring the girls but at 12 and 14 they are still really sloppy drunks.

    So, welcome back to The Lou, you’re just going to miss all the World Series hype.

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