Posted by: sawyerlaw | November 19, 2009


2010 National Rankings…but who cares?

University of Oregon School of Law
#77 – Overall Ranking
#6 – Legal Writing Program
#7 – Dispute Resolution Program
#10 – Environmental Law Program
#8 – Quality of Life


#24 – Overall Ranking
#2 – Public School Ranking
#9 – Philosophy Department (overall)
#3 – Philosophy Department (philosophy of law, worldwide)
Posted by: sawyerlaw | November 7, 2009

I’m blogging over there, too.

Last week the UO Law’s admission’s office asked me to contribute to their student life blog: Life at Law. I agreed and have two posts up already. Its primary readership includes prospective students, current students, and alumni – in roughly that order. Anyway, just thought I’d mention it here.

Posted by: sawyerlaw | November 3, 2009

Confession & Absolution

A Brief Order of Confession and Forgiveness from our church’s weekly liturgy (a good daily confession I might add)…this is from memory, so may not be perfectly accurate:

P In the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

C Amen

P Almighty God, to whom all hearts are open, all desires known, and from whom no secrets are hid: Cleanse the thoughts of our hearts by the inspiration of your Holy Spirit, that we may perfectly love you and worthily magnify your holy name, through Jesus Christ our Lord.

C Amen.

P If we say we have no sin, we deceive ourselves, and the truth is not in us. But if we confess our sins, God who is faithful and just will forgive our sins and cleanse us from all unrighteousness.

Silence for reflection and self-examination.

P Most merciful God,

C we confess that we are in bondage to sin and cannot free ourselves. We have sinned against you in thought, word, and deed, by what we have done and by what we have left undone. We have not loved you with our whole heart; we have not loved our neighbors as ourselves. We justly deserve your temporal and eternal punishment. For the sake of your Son, Jesus Christ, have mercy on us. Forgive us, renew us, and lead us, so that we may delight in your will and walk in your ways, to the glory of your holy name. Amen.

2P Almighty God, in his mercy, has given his Son to die for us and, for his sake, forgives us all our sins. As a called and ordained minister of the Church of Christ, and by his authority, I therefore declare to you the entire forgiveness of all your sins, in the name of the Father, and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit.

C Amen.

Posted by: sawyerlaw | November 1, 2009


Last month my high school was awarded the Governator’s Environmental & Economic Leadership Award! Bravo Midland. Read the press release.

Screen shot 2009-11-01 at 10.18.29 PM.jpg

Posted by: sawyerlaw | October 30, 2009

Restored 1991 Obama Article

[A scan of this 1991 article appears elsewhere online, but I wanted to transcribe it into searchable/Googleable text. There is virtually no analysis of it online. Referenced lecture delivered to an audience in Tarrytown, NY.]

Idealism and Action by Alysha Yagoda

Perhaps because the times are confusing and the future is unforeseeable, the students of the Upper School listened closely to Barack Obama. Mr. Obama, the fourth speaker in the Forbes Lecture Series, is a third-year student at Harvard Law and is the first African-American president of the prestigious Harvard Law Review. Mr. Obama grew up in Chicago and after completing undergraduate school, returned to take up what he called “organizational work”, which entailed working with the poor and attempting to create more low-income housing. After discovering that knowledge of America’s legal system would be an asset in this work, he matriculated at Harvard.

Drawing from his experiences as an organizer and as a student at Harvard, Mr. Obama suggested to his audience a plan to follow in the forthcoming years for facing the economic and social problems which challenge the country. He said the nineties generation should foster idealism, but should at the same time remember to bring responsibility to their fine aspirations, to back up words with deeds, “style” with “substance”.

To help his listeners understand the need for a new commitment to, and a new direction for, social change, Mr. Obama began his speech with a history of social movement in the sixties. He explained that the goals of that generation were focused on eliminating the social, political, and economic injustices (i.e., poverty, prejudice, the Vietnam War, etc., of the United States and the world); he explained that there were some successes, such as Head Start and the Peace Corps. He made the point, however, that the flower-children did not realize the difficulty of eradicating society’s ills. They expected the change to a better world to happen overnight. Mr. Obama felt that this mentality might have been the reason why the idealism and affirmative action of the sixties degenerated into a seventies full of the style of the sixties, but lacking the substance: a self-indulging decade.

Throughout his speech, Mr. Obama emphasized the fact that change is possible, even outlining plans he had formulated which could be used in defeating the poverty and crime of inner-city slums, in addition to other ideas about resolving racial tensions. The core of his ideas was that, as the nation comes out of the conservative, money-hungry, and cynical atmosphere of a socially conscious generation coupled with actions to fulfill idealistic goals, in order to succeed where the sixties did not.
Posted by: sawyerlaw | October 27, 2009

To Be Friends

I’m looking forward to “To Be Friends“. That’s all that I’ll say about it here.

Posted by: sawyerlaw | October 26, 2009

What’s the word for….?

Translation fun! I am using the latest version of Apple’s Safari browser. To the right of the address bar is a Google search bar. As I begin to type my search query, a drop down menu appears with recommended words and phrases based on my partially completed word or phrase. These are ranked according to the most popular search terms (I assume). Often they are useful, and sometimes produce funny or insightful results. I wanted to find the French word for melon, but after typing only “the french word for”, I became distracted by the word selections:

Screen shot 2009-10-26 at 7.46.48 PM.jpg

I decided to run the query for other languages. There’s a lot to discuss here, but I’ll wait to hear what you find interesting as you form your own opinions. Also, I know that “Mexican” and “Jewish” aren’t languages, but that just makes them all the more clever finds. Here are the results:

Read More…

Posted by: sawyerlaw | October 26, 2009

Caption Contest

Exam Printers @ UO Law: Blackmun, Breyer, Ginsburg, Warren…(there was another printer, too…but I can’t recall the name).

exam printers.jpg

Posted by: sawyerlaw | October 22, 2009

Camera Recommendations

**I am directing all future inquiries about my camera equipment/gear to this post for efficiency sake. I’ll try to keep this post current, so check back when you’re ready to buy something. [Updated 01/21/2010]

First of all, I’m flattered that you found one or more of my fantabulous photos to be so cool that you want to make the same kind of photos. You can! I know about the Nikon, Canon and Sony product lines…and that Costco has a great return policy, etc. I agree with the notion that “one’s camera is irrelevant” and just about any camera kit out there will be good enough to put you on your way to making great photos, but I do care about saving money without sacrificing quality.

You’re welcome to check out my gear, but here’s what I recommend for the beginner who wants room to grow and stuff that will last:

  • Nikon D40 Kit: ($400-425) includes the excellent 18-55mm kit lens and accessories. don’t be tempted by the inferior, but newer D40x, D60, D3000, or D5000.  Although this camera is sold as a kit, and not body-only, you can often find a refurbished model with or without the kit lens for $275-300
  • Nikon 35mm f/1.8 lens: ($199) this could be the only lens you need, it’s just that the D40 is sold as a kit only. Great for portraits and shooting indoor without a flash.
  • Nikon ML-L3 wireless remote control: ($15) Nikon should include this with basic accessories, but they don’t. Magically takes photos on timer mode or instant mode.
  • 2 Tiffen 52mm UV filters: ($5 each) one for each lens. never touch the lens glass and keep a filter on from day one.
  • 4GB SD memory card: ($12) Personally, I use a 4GB card. For $5, the 2GB is probably fine, too. If you plan to travel without your computer, you can buy a 16GB ($35) OR 32GB ($80) card before your trip.

So, for about $650, you’ll have a real quality setup. Heck, you’d be fine without the 35mm lens, too, but it’s really that good. If you have a bigger budget and/or want to make ultra-wide images, then take a look at Ken Rockwell’s DX Dream Team suggestions. Lenses hold their value and will depreciate about 10-20% over 10 years. Camera bodies depreciate much faster, at about 10-25% per year. Additionally, Ken’s camera recommendations page is worth reviewing before you buy.

Read More…

Posted by: sawyerlaw | October 21, 2009

Blogging Software

I am using Ecto for Mac to update this blog. I bought it ($20) a few years ago, and now that I’m (apparently) blogging again, I’ll suggest it to my masses of readers out there. They’ve upgraded it to version 3.0 since I’ve last used it and it’s easier to use than the older version that I liked.

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