Sunday, October 02, 2005

How Do You Italicize a Period?*

I apologize for the considerable lack of communication during the past month. I have been hella busy thanks to Interviewing, classes, the cite check police. And now, the law review Nazis1 want me to actually start writing my article so I can "contribute to the body of legal scholarship." Blah blah blah.

So this weekend I have been holed up in my little office, forced to watch the beauty of what is probably the last nice weekend of the year2 through my window, and crank out a background section on the research "safe harbor" of 35 U.S.C. § 271(e)(1)3. Anyway, because we are a "serious" law journal, and care about such mundane things as what the Bluebook says about how to short cite a report of Congress,4 I am having to re-figure out how to cite all kind of stuff, as well as getting back into the mode of citing every few words with a footnote.5

As many of you will remember, the Bluebook gets into such painstakinglyy pointless detail as to tell you what to italicize, including punctuation. My favorite, as I am sure it is yours, is the proper way to use the term "Id." (referring to the exact same reference as the last cite6). You would think that it wouldn't matter what you do with the period in id., but you would be soooooooo wrong. "Note that the period at the end of "id." is always italicized."7 Because the world would end if you had cited a souce as id. rather than id. (I swear, I italicized the period in the second id., but not the first... don't tell the Columbia Law Review Association, et al.)

Welcome to the world of high legal scholarship.

* And more importantly, why should you have to?
1 I use the term "Nazis" strictly as hyperbole - and because it has been in fashion to use the epithet for awhile - not to insinuatee that the law review office is some kind of work camp where us lowly staff members toil away at the whim of the Editorial Overlords... which of course it is.
2 Yesterday was sunny, temperature in the mid-70s, and gorgeous. Today is less nice, but still pretty damn good for October in Minnesota.
3 I know how dead sexy this topic sounds, but please refrain from throwing your underwear at your computer screen... especially you, Brian and Phil. This will not win my favor, and you are only setting yourself up for heartbreak later.
4 Philly boy, put the boxerbriefss down. Phil!
5 Can you tell?
6 As in, Phil! I mean it, put down the undies! See id.
7 THE BLUEBOOK: A UNIFORM SYSTEM OF CITATION R. 4.1, at 64 (Columbia Law Review Ass'n et al. eds., 18th ed. 2005) (Note, this is the only actual citation in this whole post... I loves me my footnotes!)


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