Ask Amanda

BY AMANDA GREGORY

Dear Amanda,

I’m a 3L who is looking to make a decision about my firm soon. I summered in a city that is far from my family and close friends as a compromise with my boyfriend, another 3L who summered and has accepted in that same city. We’ve been dating for almost two years now, and while we’re not engaged, we live together and have become very serious and committed. We haven’t talked about any concrete marriage plans yet, but the deadline to accept my firm’s offer is coming up. I’ve had several friends tell me not to go to a city just for a guy who hasn’t given me a ring yet. While I’m pretty confident things will work out, I feel pressured to re-interview this fall just as a precaution. What should I do? Should I go to that city or re-interview? Should I ask for a commitment in the form of a rock?

Sincerely,
Dislocated

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Dear Dislocated,

First off, how on earth did you go the entire summer without getting engaged? Everyone who is anyone got engaged this summer. Hearts broke on both sides of the Mason-Dixon when a certain co-marshal of mine was permanently taken off the market. By the end of the summer, half of BSA had followed in their fearless leader’s footsteps, like lambs to the slaughter. Even my favorite eternal frat boy 3L has been walking around with a dopier grin than usual, after convincing his way-too-good-for-him 2L girlfriend to accept a rather large diamond ring. She continues wearing said ring, despite repeated assurances from others that it is not too late to back out. If you’re in a long-term relationship and you didn’t get engaged this summer, I can only conclude that your relationship has no future and you should break it off as soon as possible.

As for your job dilemma, reinterviewing is a pain, and should be avoided no matter what the costs. However, you’ve neglected to mention a very relevant detail – namely, the compromise city. If you’ve compromised yourself into New York or some other overpopulated and vaguely smelly place, then reinterviewing might be worth it. If you spent your summer on the pleasant coast, either in Los Angeles or San Francisco, you should just accept your offer. In more general terms, you shouldn’t go someplace where you’re going to be unhappy, isolated and totally dependent on someone else, unless you’re fairly certain about your future together. Contrary to what your friends think, though, certainty cannot be bought at Tiffany’s. If you love him and if you think you’re in it for the long haul, skip reinterviewing and spend fly-out week somewhere tropical. It’s not like you won’t be able to find a job in another city later if things don’t work out. After all, you’ll have a Harvard Law degree.

Yours,
Amanda


Dear Amanda,

I have a friend who is asking me to host a party at my apartment in early October, when her friend from high school will be in town. “Manders” has a perfectly serviceable apartment of her own that is larger than mine, but when I point that out, she says that the back porch would be in danger of collapse if a party-sized crowd were to be on it. I’ve suggested that we simply lock the door to the porch with a key, but she still says that she wants to have it at my apartment. What should I do?

Sincerely,
Just Trying to Be Sensible

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Dear Just Trying,

I understand where you’re coming from. I think there are several things you should consider before committing to throwing the requested party.

First, how good a friend is “Manders?” Would she remain friends with you despite the fact that you write lame letters about her to her own advice column? Is she the type of friend that always remembers your birthday? Does she endure bad movies just because you want to see them? Does she make you cookies on major holidays and key lime pie for no reason at all? Did she help you find the very apartment that she currently wants to use at a time when you were homeless after losing out in the housing lottery? Did she help you find a third roommate for that apartment when your old roommate moved out in the middle of the year? In short, is she the sort of friend that is worth throwing a party for?Second, is it possible for your apartment to hold a party-sized crowd? For instance, did you have a large party last March at which your apartment comfortably fit between sixty and seventy people throughout the evening?

Finally, are there reasons why “Manders” might not want to have the party at her apartment? Is it possible that the door to the porch doesn’t lock with a key? Does she not want to lose half of the time that she could spend showing her friend around the city to preparing for a party in her own apartment? Is she weary of having parties when her roommates are going to be out of town?In short, quit your whining and do as you’re told.

Yours,
Manders

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