Tuesday, 6 September 2011

The Inbetweeners

I am leaving law school, dying in original sin, and am waiting to be eternally damned by a firm of lawyers. I'm in limbo. I am an inbetweener. And nothing on this planet is quite as wasting as the time of an inbetweener. What is an inbetweener to do?

Uncertainty is the state of existence of an inbetweener. Since I finished the LPC, the recurring thoughts are 'what on earth am I doing'? and 'should I reassess and do something else'? Is it a blessing in disguise this period of longing, lingering, lamenting? Maybe its us inbetweeners who are truly privileged. Maybe we're the ones who have the chance to have a real go at life, the ones who have the time to step back and ask 'what do I really want to do'? After all, a man finds himself when he gazes into the abyss. Or maybe we're the ones being left behind with the dregs of society; maybe we are the dregs. You can understand what I mean about uncertainty.

When you're an inbetweener you want to be employed, for neither luxury nor comfort, but for your own sanity. Finding a TC is difficult, but finding a hold-over job, an inbetweener job, is arduous because they are precisely that: jobs. We have paid our way through university and law school, endured the bad tidings of countless PFOs, shook hands with people we will never again encounter, availed ourselves as best we could of the wisdom of practitioners, and have wrestled to harbour our confidence and self-belief. Not for a job, but for a career. Not for the thing we land in, but for the thing we want.

As an inbetweener, the most stress-inducing aspect is the need to put the pursuit on hold, to an extent at least. I still send applications, attend an interview here and there and do this and that for mr and mrs legalease, but I can never immerse myself in this pursuit; I have to keep my eyes above the surface so I can see what else is out there.

Life as an inbetweener is frustrating, dull, confusing, mind-numbing and often solitary. But this could also be the most important period of my life. It is a period of, and I say this grudgingly, desperation, but also one of reflection; the two are discordant but reflection is involuntary. 'Reflection': do I simply mean I am thinking about doing something other than law? It is a more holistic kind of reflection; the French writer Chamfort wrote “a man should swallow a toad every morning to be sure of not meeting with anything more revolting in the day ahead.” Well this is toad swallowing time.

Waiting. Thinking. Grinding my teeth. This is how its going to be until my day of damnation. Damn them.


  1. inbetweening becomes an art form :)

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  3. Sorry my hard rockin' amigo..send me your email details to thetchawk@gmail.com.. do it!..

  4. Ahhh I remember that time; I went in to DIY mode and redid a lot of the house....ofc then we moved!

    I did end up succumbing and started to spend my time to do something more "useful" and started learning a language eventually :p

  5. That's a good way to spend your time. I'm doing the same..

  6. okay im definately an inbetweener, i know that now!

  7. Chuck Norris's harder brother18 May 2012 at 02:58

    As an inbetweener I wasted alot of time; drink, girls, drugs (not the hard stuff), girls, drink and girls. I had a russel brand charm about me so the girls bit was easy but as a inbetweener cash is hard to come by so had to put the boozing off for a while. nailed a tc not long ago. now i can afford the booze. but the girls don't seem as interested any more. funny how things work out. maybe its cos i got a bit more serious and buttoned down. but i don't believe that for a second.

    stay true to yourselves peeps.