Category Archives: Stuff you can use

End of semester advice

 You are encouraged to take this advice or completely ignore it. 35 years of shepherding law students through law school gives me some perspective so here are a few observations:

  • everyone will tell you to not get stressed!  You are still going to get stressed but it how you shake it off, push it away, decompress that matters.  Sometimes just running around the block will clear your head and gain focus. Bottom line: channel your stress to your benefit.
  • don’t listen to everyone. Not everyone knows what they are talking about. Listen to people you trust and have respect for.  Consider their point of view and level of experience of those you listen to. Those of us who have been where you are now can empathize as we have stood in your shoes.
  • totally ignore the downers! Oh “woe is me” is not what you need to hear right now. In the immortal words of Monty Python ” RUN AWAY”. 
  • Set up a reward for yourself for the end of exams, something you really want to do so you have a positive goal post. It might be getting your nails done or eating at a favorite BBQ joint, just put it on the calendar for Dec. 10th. It will help you look forward and not lament what has passed.
  • Reach out when you need to but don’t expect magic beans. Sometimes it is too late to catch up.. Nothing beats knuckling down and putting in the work. Set up an exam preparation schedule and STICK TO IT!  No distractions, no delays and no excuses. 

A very smart student once said “ You know a lot but you don’t know everything”. And that is ok. Doing your best is all that is asked.

Best of luck and know that the Pro Bono office is open if you just need a positive thought, a cup of coffee or a space to yell!

Pam Robinson

Incivility gets a footnote!

In a Family Court custody case in Maine centered around one parties refusal to follow the science and vaccinate the children, a footnote appeared that is worth reading.

We feel obligated to address the unprofessional nature of the brief filed by Michelle’s attorney. Besides engaging in selective editing of the guardian ad litem’s report, the brief does not reflect the standards of civility that we expect because it is filled with intemperate language and unsupported allegations. For example, Michelle’s brief refers to parts of Joshua’s brief as “arrogant[]” and “egocentric, self-serving, and nonsensical”; calls Joshua’s argument about the best interests of the children “slanderous” and “false and defaming”; and makes an unsupported allegation that Joshua’s attorney became “incensed” when the trial court did not take judicial notice of the CDC’s “proclamations.” This type of uncivil language is never acceptable, see Key Equip. Fin., Inc. v. Hawkins, 2009 ME 117, ¶¶ 22-23, 985 A.2d 1139, but is particularly harmful here because the parties already have a long history of strife. Attorneys should seek to reduce heated rhetoric between parties in litigation, not fan the flames of conflict.

The full case can be found at:

Fat Bears and Brackets

Nothing to do with the law but…  did you know that annually the Katami National Park in Alaska has a contest to find the fattest bear? Yes, it is a real thing and you can join by voting for your favorite fat bear. There is even a Fat Bear Hall of Fame! For more and to vote ( why not) check out this link:

Walker has put on the pounds and is a favorite to win!  We  applaud  your  efforts  Walker!

Annual Bike and Walk Count

Interested in improving the City of Columbia Bike and Walk Master Plan? Then participate in the Annual Count. Data matters and helps to drive budget decisions. Details here:

City of Columbia Bicyclist & Pedestrian Counts: Volunteer to help make the City of Columbia a safer place to walk and ride!
Aug 02, 2021

The City of Columbia is seeking volunteers to help conduct our routine Bicyclist & Pedestrian Counts throughout Columbia.  By counting pedestrians and bicyclists, volunteers help to ensure that all of the City’s residents count: transit riders, pedestrians, and bicyclists are often not accounted for in traffic studies – the same traffic studies used to make important decisions about our City’s landscape.  In counting, volunteers are also taking part in a national effort: The National Bicycle and Pedestrian Documentation Project.

The City targets key intersections and crossings for pedestrian and bicyclist counts; these are locations which are heavily used, and at many of these locations pedestrians and/or bicyclists have been injured or killed.  By collecting data routinely, on weekdays and weekends, we are able to provide valuable and robust feedback to the many agencies that plan for our roadways.  The survey will help us better understand who uses the City’s roadways – streets and sidewalks included – and how they use them. A greater understanding of people’s behavior, as well as new data, will help to influence people-oriented planning and policy that inspires walkable, bikeable, and livable transportation design.

Volunteer to count as many times as you please!  Eight time slots are available, and each of the locations must be counted once on a weekday and once on a Saturday.  Surveyors can select from a list of count locations, and will count pedestrians and cyclists at one location for two hours.

Please note, we ask that all volunteers to take measures to protect themselves and others from the COVID-19 virus by wearing a mask and staying socially distant when conducting the counts. As a solitary and outdoor (or in-vehicle) activity, surveyors may wish to familiarize themselves with the site in advance in order to identify appropriate precautions.

WHAT:        City of Columbia Bicyclist & Pedestrian Counts

WHEN:        Volunteer to count as many times as you please!  Eight time slots are available, and each location must be counted once on a weekday and once on a Saturday:

Tuesday, September 7, 7:30-9:30AM

Wednesday, September 8, 7:30-9:30AM

Thursday, September 9, 7:30-9:30AM

Saturday, September 11, 10:00AM-12:00PM (noon)

Tuesday, September 14, 7:30-9:30AM

Wednesday, September 15, 7:30-9:30AM

Thursday, September 16, 7:30-9:30AM

Saturday, September 18, 10:00AM-12:00PM (noon) 

WHERE:      Sign up at; counts occur at locations throughout Columbia

WHO:          Open to the public

To sign up, visit If you have questions regarding the routine Bicyclist & Pedestrian Count effort, contact Planning and Development Services Department at 803-545-3181.  For information on the City’s Planning efforts, including the Walk Bike Columbia Pedestrian & Bicycle Master Plan, and the Walkable 29203 Pedestrian Master Plan, visit