TEMPE, AZ—A local 1L, Brenda Nelson, has made it a point to make sure all of her social media followers know about her law school experience in vivid detail. Posting every day about how much she’s working, she says she feels it is her “responsibility to keep everyone updated on how law school is going.” The most recent posts contain screenshots of witty and bombastic dissents from Justice Antonin Scalia, despondent references to how she “just doesn’t have time for anything else these days #lawschool #ellewoods,” and a photo of a desk cluttered with her laptop, case books, a steaming cup of Charlie’s Cafe coffee, and no fewer than one dozen highlighters with the caption “My Friday night.”
In an exclusive interview, The Misnomer asked Nelson if she ever worried people might be annoyed with the constant bombardment of law school posts. “I’ve never thought of it that way,” she said after thinking for a bit, “but I seriously doubt it. I suppose you could say it isn’t foreseeable,” she laughed, bringing her daily count of law-related puns up to nine. She then asked our interviewer to hold on for a second so she could tweet what she just said.
The Misnomer got in touch with Nelson’s parents, asking how they felt about the onslaught of facebook posts. In an email response, Nelson’s mother said, “We always knew that she was a diligent undergraduate student, but it’s comforting to have constant…constant…reminders of how hard she’s working in law school. What parent wouldn’t want their child to not only get into law school, but make sure everyone knew she was there? We couldn’t be prouder.”
The praises don’t end there. Nelson’s old friends from undergrad and high school also said they were grateful for the posts. Alex Fontaine, an old swim teammate of Nelson’s, said that they’d fallen out of touch since graduation. “Then a couple of months ago, I started seeing her all over my news feed. Apparently she’s in law school now.” Asked if he’s tried to reach out to her to rekindle the old friendship, Fontaine laughed. “No. According to her posts, she doesn’t have time for anything but law school. I got the strong impression that she’s way too busy for anything outside of classwork.”
Other old friends echoed this sentiment, some saying they had gone so far as unfollowing Nelson “to avoid the temptation of distracting her.”
When we asked one friend who had multiple Sociology classes with Nelson in undergrad, she responded, “Yeah, that’s the reason I unfollowed her, that’s definitely it. I was happy for her in August, so I liked the first few posts. Then I realized every time I liked a post she would get a notification. I didn’t want to be a distraction, so I just removed the temptation entirely by unfollowing her. Now I can enjoy facebook guilt-free again!”
Fellow law students claimed Nelson’s daily updates were a sort of “law student PSA.”
“Her updates remind us of how hard we should be working every day,” claimed fellow classmate Jonathon Benson. “If I ever feel the temptation to go out for a beer, or watch an episode of my favorite show, or read a few chapters of a novel—basically if I try to enjoy life—I just open up facebook. Without fail, one of her posts is right there at the top of my newsfeed, and guilts me right into cracking open the books again.”
At the end of our interview, we asked Nelson if she saw herself continuing the daily post brigade.
“Of course! I feel I’m doing important work, reminding everyone every day that I’m a diligent law student.” Asked if she thought her facebook friends felt the same way, she responded, “I’m certain they do. How certain? Beyond a reasonable doubt.”
In true form, Nelson pulled out her phone to update again. “That’s ten! I’m on fire today.”