“Typers”

Typers. How I hate typers. Typers are a breed of law student (almost everyone now) who have decided to forgo the traditional pen and paper in favor of small computers.  Maybe it was a product of my undergrad (the wonderful University of Vermont), but sitting in a classroom full of laptops has been unique to graduate school and an experience I enjoy about as much as seeing a Jets’ fan smile.

I remember coming to orientation over a year ago and sitting through classes designed to prepare us for the “main performance” of law school. Most students sat with their book, pen, and binder eager to learn about the splendor of law. Little did I know that this was a misrepresentation of the natural classroom dynamic.

When the curtain finally lifted[1] and classes began, hundreds of laptops appeared. Computers made everything more difficult.  Sitting down required one to navigate an array of cords and chargers entangled between people and their seats.  God help the poor soul who accidently bumped into a screen, or slightly moved a cable as he attempted to sit down (the glares received from such action would make even Chuck Norris crumble). But, the ordeal isn’t over yet; typers often require about twice the space as a normal, sane law student. They need a spot for their mouse, a spot for their charger, a spot for their book, a spot for their water bottle, a spot for their computer case, and a spot for their demonic alter so they can conduct sacrifices during class. Not only do they encroach on the unsuspecting law student’s space, but typers often have you aid in their daily setup. They require you to plug in their charger, assist them in locating the USB port for their mouse, make sure their screen isn’t visible to the professor, and most of them have the audacity to request back massages. These tasks are hard enough to complete without having to ignore all the beeps, whirls, and hums associated with old laptops that are beaten and abused in backpacks.

Once class starts the fun really begins. Typers derive their name from the horribly annoying sounds that are produced by having 50 students write down the same phrase simultaneously on their computers. Sitting in class observing this phenomenon is like being next to the Grinch atop Mount Crumpit during Christmas: all the noise, noise, noise!!  It is quite impressive.  I challenge you next time you’re in class and the professor states an important fact, instead of writing or typing a sentence, just pause for 20 seconds and listen to all the tapping that occurs. If you don’t have the desire to smash small children’s presents, well then, you’re a better person than I.

There’s an additional version of the typer I have yet to mention. This horrible sub-species includes those who feel it isn’t annoying enough to type normally.  Instead, they have to type with their fingernails. The sound produced from such an action rivals fingernails on a chalkboard or listening to a Jets’ fan talk about football. Even other typers are flustered by such action!

Now, I know why you typers do what you do. I know it’s easier to Wikipedia a case rather than reading or briefing. I know class gets dull and sometimes Heliboarding is an easy escape. I’ll even buy the argument that it might be an easier way to store all of the information we collect in law school (just don’t destroy that computer). But I’m here to challenge you. Why take the easy way out?  Why not just tell the professor you couldn’t do the reading because you had to watch the Red Sox crush the Yankees? Why not slack off the old fashion way, with doodles of planes and tic-tack-toe. I dream of a class with no computers, where the loudest tap is someone dropping a pencil. I’m here challenging you to help make this a reality.


[1] See Prof. Mushlin.



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