The Joys of (Not) Mooting

As yet another IMS approaches, I see our beloved campus rapidly transform into a battleground. The camaraderie between classmates turns into combat and friendly jesting to jeering. As much as it pains me to witness my fellow classmates descend into this carnage, I can’t help but feel a tinge of pleasure for being far removed from the madness that is the Internal Moot Selection.

Having spent more than three out of my yet to be complete six semesters at law school mooting, not participating in the bloodbath this year does make me feel somewhat relieved. Agreed that mooting is a big part of law school, and agreed that it is a part that I have enjoyed very much in the last two years; this time however, I feel staying away won’t be so bad. I’ll definitely miss the kick you get when an argument is deciphered, the pride that you feel when you look at a neatly formatted memorial and the rush of pleading a good round. Yet, I won’t miss having to watch out for my laptop-lest it be hidden, or worse, thrown out of the window in the spirit of the competition. I’ll definitely not miss the sore shoulders from sleeping in class on the bench to cover up for the sleepless nights spent working on the memo. And I’ll most certainly not miss being brought to the verge of tears by my seniors during mock pleadings.

Alas! Old habits die hard. I find myself gravitating towards the library to be surrounded by the diligent participants: juniors- eager, yet unaware of the murky waters that lie ahead, and classmates and seniors- aware, but far too deep in the waters to be rescued. I sit amongst them, peer at their laptop screens, and shake my head in disapproval. Flustered, Vee looks at me searchingly for his senior’s help, and I find myself unable to refuse. I sit with his teammate Ess, and give her a crash (pretentious) course on the law that the moot proposition is based on. Before I know it, I am pulled by other (seemingly) admiring juniors, and spend the better part of the evening initiating them to the magical world of mooting and rescuing them from the abyss of ignorance.

While it may seem like I would have lost a considerable amount of time helping my friends out, it comes to me as a surprise how not mooting in fact still leaves me with adequate time for myself. So, while my classmates struggle with submissions of all sorts, I find myself breezing past project deadlines. And I still have time to participate in research projects and internships. Yet my day continues to be so long, that I end up gymming. After all of that, I somehow have time to spare for an episode or two of my favourite T.V series. And what better place to watch than the library? The air conditioned environs and the silence make for the perfect setting to enjoy the latest episodes. The glares that Mooters around me shoot in my direction when I giggle (and not very loudly at that) at my screen do little to deter me. (After all, part reason why I’m in the library is to be around just in case they need any help!)

Yet I can’t help but peer at Bee’s laptop screen. I snatch his laptop from him to run a quick eye over the citations in his memo. Ah! Nothing like a correctly cited and beautifully formatted memorial! Before I know it, I am sending across material to everyone on how to cite in the prescribed format. I then find myself helping Vee find the right books in the right section of the library, and already have my nose deep into the commentaries. I stay up all night reading and re-reading the problem, and have made myself a flow chart of arguments. This moot problem is my key to acing the IMS. What was I even thinking when I decided not to moot? I didn’t realize how much I was missing this until this moment.

I rush to Kay to beg her to be my teammate (yet another time). I tell her how we can do this and are meant to. But she goes on about how it’s too late. “Too late shmoo late Kay! I’ve got this all figured. We still have a week to submission. I just need a little bit of your help and we’ll be the Mooting Gods of this season!” She refuses to budge. “Not happening, woman. Registration is now closed.”

***

P.S- All you Mooters are true bravehearts. All the best for IMS 2016!

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