Sunday, November 11, 2007


Is the BLF Auction really happening this year? I looked at the list of auctions and it seems really short and unimpressive. Didn't we have three times as many auctions last year and the year before? Or is there normally a last minute crush of donations in the hours leading up to the event?

Although the faculty auctions totally outnumber the student ones, I notice that no professor I've ever taken a class with is donating anything. Lester, Moran, Peterson, Talley, Rakowski, & Caron - I'm talking to you! Since the rest are at Harvard this year, I suppose they get a pass.

I also notice there's no link on the webpage to donate products and services for auctions- is there any way to donate besides signing up in person in the lobby? The only way I even found out about this website was from a friend who got it from the c/o 2009 email list.

Are people going to BLF?

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Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's a very generous gesture, but the Groth 2003 Napa Valley Cab Sauv really should have been drunk 2 years ago.

11/11/2007 4:51 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, people are going. LOTS of people are going.

11/11/2007 5:02 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The website is less than a day old right now (unfortunately).

I'll see about getting a link up for easier donations ASAP- that would certainly be helpful!

Also, the auction page should be updated significantly over the next couple of days... I don't think this represents the entirety... still getting lists in over email.

Other suggestions are definitely welcome!

-The Tardy BLF Webmaster

11/11/2007 6:35 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Also, if I remember correctly from last year, a lot of donations (at least student ones) came in at the last minute. And I don't even remember BLF having an auction website last year (which may just mean I didn't know about it), so it seems like things are fine.

11/11/2007 6:49 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Student auctions just got a bump... looks like more than faculty now.

Hopefully they keep coming in.

11/11/2007 6:54 PM  
Blogger McWho said...

Considering that we are lucky to even have a BLF this year, I think we owe the BLF team a big thanks. Everyone make sure to buy your tickets, donate and attend! Best party of the year in my opinion.

11/11/2007 9:07 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Agreed about the wine. Napa cabs can't age more than a year and a half tops. NO ONE ELSE BID ON THE WINE. I'll bid on it though, you know, for the cause and all.

11/12/2007 12:22 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Yes, the Groth wine is certainly not one that anyone should be bidding on. And don't be fooled by what you find when you google the quality and value of a Groth 2003 cab. The interwebs are full of bad information. So, just leave that one alone. Please.

11/12/2007 6:02 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Unfortunately, the wine in question got a sub-par rating by Wine Spectator ("...with a hint of sour fruit on the finish").

Don't judge a wine by it's pricetag.

11/12/2007 11:37 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Even if you don't go (as I will not, and did not last year either), I encourage you to buy a ticket. I went to the Phoenix Fellowship reception two years ago, and it was very inspriring - it's a good cause.

11/12/2007 6:52 PM  
Anonymous Colleen said...

I say hats of to Tatyana for single handedly organizing this. She's secured a pretty impressive array of faculty, student and firm donations as well as the venue and bartenders, all while OCIPing and going to class.

I agree that more professors should donate, and I challenge my fellow students to get those donations by 1pm Thursday.

11/13/2007 5:12 PM  
Blogger McWho said...

Hats off, too. Colleen for a former LRW TA your grammar leaves much to be desired.

11/13/2007 7:01 PM  
Anonymous Colleen said...

Proper grammar and spelling are constructs of social heirarchy.

11/14/2007 8:27 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

BLF warning: Being bad at BLF may hinder your career!!!

11/14/2007 10:18 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Wow. Just wow.

11/14/2007 12:12 PM  
Anonymous A Crabby Boaltie said...

I wasn't impressed with BLF last year. It was drunken/messy. The student bands were great, but otherwise the music was terrible. And the MC was so annoying that I spent most of the time on the balcony.

11/14/2007 4:49 PM  
Anonymous a crabbie boaltie said...

Also, I don't think that the Phoenix Fellowship is really a worthwhile cause.

It would be one thing if it encouraged people to go into public service after graduation. But it doesn't; it only rewards people who did public service before law school. And aren't those people already rewarded by the Admissions Office? A person who spent three years organizing workers in Guatamala is a more prized applicant than someone who applied straight from undergrad.

11/14/2007 4:58 PM  
Blogger Boris said...

Re 4:49 - you didn't like BLF? How about you volunteer and help out.

Re 4:58 - funding law students to pursue public interest will no doubt result in more public interest attorney's after graduation.

I hope cash bar proceeds go to BLF and not the venue owner, because that is where I will make my biggest donation.

11/14/2007 5:32 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

It's a cash bar?!?!?!!? Last year, weren't the drinks included?

Agreed on the Fellowship not being that worthwhile (no incentive to use money for a good cause or future public interest - rather than *cough* buying a Lexus).

Also, I very much agree that the MC last year was ungodly annoying. I'm certainly not going to support the fellowship as much as I'm going for the party. The incentive drops if it's not open bar though...

11/14/2007 5:42 PM  
Anonymous A Crabby Boaltie said...


Grants for law graduates would result in more pi lawyers. But I'm not sure how much BLF is focused on that anymore.

These days, it's mostly about the summer grant or the Phoenix Fellowship--neither of which is tied to pursuing pi after graduation. That's why most Phoenix Fellows and 1L summer grant recipients are going to Heller, Milbank, etc. like everyone else.

Regarding the people that ARE going into pi after graduation: if they are already turning down an extra $100K/year, they're not being motivated by an extra $1K grant as a law student.

And as the above post noted, a recent Phoenix Fellow DID use the money to buy a Lexus, after all.

11/14/2007 5:56 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

MC is guaranteed to be much better this year. Last year was a drunken mess, but I was entertained. If you're looking for a distinguished black-tie event it will probably be past your bedtime anyway.

11/14/2007 6:18 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Actually, it seems like the Phoenix Fellowship rewards people, first and foremost, for having a certain skin color.

"...the Phoenix Fellowship was created in response to Prop 209. It was designed first, to encourage students of color to choose Boalt..." (

11/14/2007 6:22 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The auction page has been updated again. It's look less anemic!


11/14/2007 9:45 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

The reason there's a cash bar this year is because last year had an open bar and became a drunken mess. The cops came, one student was taken away in an ambulance, and the police were involved for months.

So think of it this way: people misbehaving and unable to hold their liquor last year = need to pay this year.

11/15/2007 8:37 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Although I think paying for students to do public interest for a summer is a very worthy cause, I don't think BLF gets bang for its bucks with the Phoenix fellowship. While part of its goal is to encourage students of color to attend Boalt, the other priority is to support someone who will do public interest after they graduate. If you look at the recently graduated & 3L Phoenix Fellowship recipients you will notice that none of them are going to do public interest. They are all going to firms. (There *might* be one doing public interest, but I don’t think so.) Why shouldn’t that money turn into a loan that the fellows have to pay back so that more money can go into providing summer stipends? Otherwise I am just subsidizing someone to get a fat scholarship and go work at a firm. I can think of better things to do with my money.

11/16/2007 10:06 AM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

I think you're all forgetting how incredibly hard it is to land a public interest job (much harder than getting a firm job). My best friend in law school is a Phoenix Fellowship recipient, and (s)he is very, very committed to working public interest, but this person knows it might not work out for him/her. Their summer internships (if they get them) are in no way guarantees of permanent offers after graduation. The process just isn't the same, and the standards are a lot higher. They want someone with really good grades and strong evidence on their resume that they will stick around the organization for a long time. And even then, the odds are still low. So please just try to think about that before you judge everyone who said they wanted PI but are going to a firm instead.

11/16/2007 12:23 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

So perhaps the fellowship should be merit, rather than race based.

11/16/2007 2:59 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

Perhaps the fellowship should also be based on need, so that people who can afford to buy a Lexus don't use the fellowship to do so, preventing people who actually need the money from being denied fellowships because there isn't enough money to go around (i.e. students working for DAs did not get fellowships last year).

11/16/2007 5:34 PM  
Anonymous A Crabby Boaltie said...

The Phoenix Fellowship can promote either public interest or race, but it can't do both. As a result, it really does neither.

If public interest is the objective, then it should actually fund public interest (like a post-grad grant), and be based on merit. It's not like only Chicanos can serve the Chicano community in Oakland.

If increasing the number of minority law students is the objective, then it should drop the p.i. requirement and acknowledge that it is a privately-funded affirmative action scholarship. You could then target the category of student least represented (African-American males, I think).

Personally, I think BLF should return to its roots of "providing legal services to historically under-served communities," and return to the post-grad grants.

11/17/2007 9:28 PM  
Anonymous Anonymous said...

"The Phoenix Fellowship can promote either public interest or race, but it can't do both. As a result, it really does neither."

What a ridiculous statement. How are those things mutually exclusive?

11/17/2007 9:41 PM  
Anonymous A Crabbie Boaltie said...

9:41--You need to pay more attention.

I never said that public interest and race are mutually exclusive. It's the structures of public interest and affirmative action fellowships that conflict.

An obligation-free 1L scholarship doesn't produce more p.i. lawyers. It only rewards people for prior action. That's why almost all Phoenix fellows are take Biglaw jobs. An effective p.i. fellowship would instead obligate and fund a post-grad p.i. project.

But that fellowship would be an ineffective for affirmative action, because the reward would be delayed and would require a significant commitment. I'm not sure any the present Phoenix Fellows would have accepted the award if they couldn't take their Biglaw jobs, too. It certainly wouldn't have motivated them to choose Boalt over another school.

Also, the p.i. background requirement of the current fellowship limits the pool of potential recipients, since there are presumably applicants without that background who are great AA candidates (such as black and Latino men).

11/18/2007 12:16 AM  

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