So there I was stuck in a classroom full of lawyers being taught regulations on privacy. A gunner in the front row started in with all of the examples of situations she had been in that were “just like that” and then she started talking about her perspective of the way life should be as though we all had that same perspective.
That’s when I remembered why I had a drinking problem when I went to law school.
It prevented me (most of the time) from telling people to shut the fuck up.
It was weird, having sworn off the law, to be suddenly enmeshed in an environment full of them. But I found out rather quickly that Information Systems Privacy is like AA for recovering attorneys. It is a nice mashup of cutting edge law, policy, nuance, wordsmithing and busy work to make any former and some current attorneys nip-out.
But the most awesome part of the entire event was that it was taking place at the Hyatt in Bellevue, Washington.
My girlfriend, Bethany, drove up to Seattle with me Saturday morning. We stopped by my uncle and grandma’s house for lunch.
Uncle Bob: Can I get you a shot of scotch?
Me and Bethany: Yes!
My 98 year old Granny: I bought that scotch at the duty free shop last time I was in Canada. I always get some good scotch when I am there. And Tylenol with codeine. It takes the edge off.
Bethany and I finished our scotch, had lunch and journeyed up to Seattle, and by journeyed I mean sang Journey songs all the way up – there may have been a little Rock of Ages scoring our trip. We got to the check-in at the Hyatt in Bellevue (where my conference was taking place). There was quite a line and I was antsy so I started doing squats while waiting. At the counter it took the lady a few extra minutes to find my reservation because they misspelled my last name “Cafforla.”
That night I played in a ComedySportz show in Seattle and we hung out with some of the players. Bethany went home the next morning and I started the International Association of Privacy Professionals (IAPP) conference. The first day was an inaptly named “prep-class” for the foundations exam. It seemed like pretty basic information at first. Then the guy teaching the class started getting information wrong and was being corrected by the students. I say it was inaptly named because when we started asking the instructor to guide us on what we need to know for the exam he said, “I am not teaching to the exam, I don’t know what is on it.” My comments on the evaluation can be summed up as “Look up the definition of Prep-Class.”
I got back to my room Sunday evening and looked at the card next to the telephone which told me to feel free to order up some amenities to make my stay more comfortable. I called the front desk and ordered up a make-up mirror, a bathrobe, a foam pillow (because the 6 on the bed were not enough), a flat iron, a fork and some vaseline. I didn’t need a single one of those items, but they were free to use and I was the queen of the Hyatt. When my robe showed up I was on the phone to Andrew who was talking me down from ordering the concierge to put the robe on me. Seriously, the Hyatt is awesome.
The days passed by quickly and I saw some interesting speakers and met some entertaining people. One of the events I went to was a speed dating style meet and greet. It made me finally realize why it’s 2013 but I still have business cards – next time I will bring them along. At the end of the conference I took the exams for the certifications. The prep-class was found to be even more inaptly named as it had not prepped me at all for the depth of the exam. We were then told that the results would be 6-8 weeks because they changed to a new grading system. I can only assume that to take that long to grade 60 multiple choice questions means that the new grading system was designed by Rube Goldberg and involves a ferret, honey and graduated cylinders.
In the end, I am glad I have found a career path that suits me and that I enjoy; even if I have to go to classes with gunners now and again.