October 9, 2009
What Was Your Most Memorable Tax Class?
The ABA Journal asks, What Was Your Most Memorable Law School Class Session?:
What was your most memorable law school class? What happened in that class? A special guest lecture? A spectacular gaffe by the professor or another student?
My most memorable class was when, teaching estate planning as an adjunct at Cornell, I asked several questions of a student presenting his seminar paper at the front of the room. The student suddenly said "I'm not feeling well" and passed out, hitting his head on the lecturn as he fainted, opening a gash on his forehead. I remember wondering whether socratic assault was a crime. I feared that my nascent teaching career was over, but the episode actually helped me in the meat market the following year. The chair of CIncinnati's appointments committee expressed admiration, saying "I've taught for over 20 years and, despite my best efforts, I've never drawn blood in the classroom." (Five years later, he told me how disappointed he was after sitting in on my class as part of my tenure review -- I was not nearly as "tough" as he had expected.) The kicker of the story is that when the student came to, his first words were "This isn't going to affect my grade, is it?"
Comments are open for your stories!
TrackBack URL for this entry:
Listed below are links to weblogs that reference What Was Your Most Memorable Tax Class?:
My Dean had a seizure in my class before I was tenured. I got tenure anyway. He resigned as Dean (for other reasons).
Posted by: Michael A. Livingston | Oct 9, 2009 10:23:08 AM
The 20th anniversary of my most memorable tax class is in about a week. I was teaching a make-up class during the late afternoon on October 17, 1989 and rushing to finish before the start of the Giants-A's World Series game. The topic was the casualty loss deduction -- specifically, the suddenness requirement. While discussing whether termite damage was as sudden as a tornado or hurricane, a 7.1 earthquake occurred, the room shook violently, etc., and then the lights went out. I have the entire class on audiotape and used a portion to illustrate the suddenness requirement in later classes.
Posted by: Steve Schwarz | Oct 9, 2009 12:09:47 PM
During my first semester teaching, I was standing in front of the podium and leaning back on it. The heel on one of my navy blue high heels snapped right off. Apparently, I exclaimed, "Oh! That's embarrassing!" (I don't remember the excited utterance.) I immediately took off the other shoes and finished the class wearing no shoes at all -- luckily I was wearing stockings without rips!
Posted by: Bridget Crawford | Oct 9, 2009 3:20:45 PM