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An Idea… or Not

Tuesday, October 14th, 2014

The following was sent to me from my Mom. It made me laugh. However… no cats were harmed in the production of this blog. And of course, to all cat lovers… I realize that this is not funny!

How to wash a cat
1.  Put both lids of the toilet up and add 1/8 cup of pet shampoo to the water in the  bowl…… 

2.  Pick up the cat and soothe him while you carry him towards the bathroom.

3.  In one smooth movement put the cat in the toilet and close the lid. You may need to stand on the  lid.

4. At  this point the  cat will self agitate and make ample suds. Never  mind the noises that come from the toilet, the cat is actually enjoying this! 

5.  Flush the toilet three or four times. This  provides a ‘Power-Wash’  and ‘Rinse’.

6.  Have someone open the front door of your home.  Be sure that there are no people between the  bathroom and the front door. 

7.  Stand well back, behind the toilet as far as you can, and quickly lift the  lid.

8.  The cat will rocket out of the toilet, streak through the bathroom, and run outside where he  will dry himself  off.

9.  Both the toilet and the cat will be sparkling clean.

washed cat

 

Yours  Sincerely,

The Dog
The Dog

Just another legal blog!!!

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Noah’s Ark Lessons

Monday, October 13th, 2014

While I was recently looking for obscure facts for the “Did You Know” section, I found didyouknow.org. That’s where I also found Lessons from Noah’s Ark that made me think a bit. Here are those lessons:

1. Don’t miss the boat.

2. Remember that we are all in the same boat.

3. Plan ahead. It wasn’t raining when Noah built the Ark.

4. Stay fit. When you’re 600 years old, someone may ask you to do something really big.

5. Don’t listen to critics; just get on with the job that needs to be done.

6. Build you future on high ground.

7. Speed isn’t always an advantage; the snails also made it to safety.

8. For safety sake, travel in pairs.

9. When you’re stressed, float a while.

10. Remember, the ark was built by amateurs; the Titanic by professionals.

11. No matter the storm, there’s always a rainbow waiting.

See: Lessons from Noah’s Ark

And for our DID YOU KNOW, I am also combining it with our pic o’ day.

The heaviest cat on record was a tabby cat named Himmy, who weighed in at a svelte 46 pounds/ 15 ounces. That seemed applicable to our blog today because I wonder if Himmy would have counted as “two” for the ark.

Hummi

 

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Law and Proverbs 23:4-5

Monday, October 13th, 2014

Proverbs 23: 4-5 has two opposites. The Bible tells us in these verses:

4. Answer not a fool according to his folly, lest thou also be like unto him.

     5.  Answer a fool according to his folly, lest he be wise in his own conceit.

Now, how do you compare those two verses? Does it sound like those new Directv commercials with Rob Lowe? You know, the ones where Rob Lowe is playing multiple parts. In one, he tells you not to be like the creepy Rob Lowe and you are thinking, “But both Rob Lowes are creepy”. Hard to tell the difference?

These verses basically tell us to react to the circumstances Sometimes we ignore the fool. Other times we challenge.

Sometimes, I think that the practice of law is a bit like that. Not the “answer a fool part”. Instead, each case is a little different. There is no special equation or chart to rely on for every circumstance. I feel it’s a little like life. Prepare, React and Adapt.

In facing the circumstances, Coach Bear Bryant said that, “You never know how a horse will pull until you hook him to a heavy load”. Facing the circumstance! And, that’s my Monday blog of metaphors!

DID YOU KNOW that the expression sweating like a pig is actually not true. Pigs can’t actually sweat. Another of those opposites.

And for pic o’ day, here’s a good speller:

Speller

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Friday’s This and That

Thursday, October 9th, 2014

Geoff and I are headed up to Baltimore for the Orioles game tonight. I am sure that we will discuss some case business in the car. That makes it a business trip that just happens to contain some baseball… right???

So, that tells you that I am probably a bit weak on blog thoughts. Those are the best times to reach into the notebook and pull out some pic o’s that have recently been sent to me. First, we go with the obligatory Friday:

Paws up

 

Then,  a bit of plotting always makes me laugh:

Plotting

    And finally, some persistence:

Persistence

I hope you have a great weekend. If you wander to the Orioles game on TV, you might see Geoff and I behind the Orioles dugout “talking business”!

 

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The Myth or Fact of Aunt Jemima

Wednesday, October 8th, 2014

USA Today titles it Pancake flap: ‘Aunt Jemima’ heirs seek dough. For me, it makes for interesting reading and also makes me hungry for pancakes.

That’s the teaser to this story about a lawsuit recently filed in Chicago by two great-grandsons who claim that they are heirs to an entitled fortune from Nancy Green. Born a slave in 1834 in Kentucky, Nancy Green was known at Aunt Jemima. In fact, her heirs claim that she was responsible for the recipe for these magical pancakes. Aunt J

I feel a little guilty just attaching the story for you to read because a recent commenter to one of my blogs claimed that I was attaching too many articles… and that did not make it a blog. Still, if you read the story, you will learn about pancakes; the denial of Quaker Oats; and the recipe and recipe additions. Yep… that should count as a blog, even if it is just in the food category!

And for pic o’ day… a bit of fear:

thunder

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Just Count to 10

Tuesday, October 7th, 2014

I just saw a list of lies on the Internet. It was a list compiled on a message board. So, I copied them down as a starter for this blog:

1.  “I did not bet on baseball”.
2.  “There are no soldiers inside of that giant wooden horse.”
3.  “Your money is safe with Bernie Madoff.”
4.  “I’m searching for the real killers.”
5.  “At that moment I hit my face against the player leaving a small bruise on my cheek and a strong pain in my teeth.”
6.  “It’s not you, it’s me.”
7.  “I.  Did. Not. Have. Sexual. Relations. With. That. Woman.”
8.  “There are Weapons of Mass Distruction in Iraq.”
9.  “Welcome aboard the Titanic. Yes, this boat is unsinkable.”
10. “We requested from law enforcement any and all information about the incident, including the video from inside the elevator. That video was not made available to us and no one in our office has seen it until today.”

I had to look some of those up. For instance, #5 didn’t even sound familiar until I googled to learn that the Uruguay soccer player in the World Cup decided that his excuse sounded better than admitting to deliberately sinking his teeth into an opponent.

This list is almost like a trivia game. I guess it could also have included “I am not a crook”. It does remind us of lies that are told. I wonder if #4 is the original lie of O.J. Simpson. I remember a comedian saying that he obviously was doing a good job “looking for the real killer” on every golf course in California.

This came to mind when I heard about a recorded statement that was taken of an insured, following a crash that she had caused. Her statement to her own adjuster admitted that she started the car, put it into reverse with her gear shift, and then counted to 10 before backing up. She never looked behind her because “that’s how she had been taught”. That sounds like truth even though it seems a bit unbelievable.

That brings it into my world. What do you think of a defense lawyer who files an answer to the lawsuit that admits no fault, despite being told differently by his client?  Or, Is that just providing a good defense?

When I asked that very question to a defense lawyer after filing an answer like that, he just admitted that he did such filing; because,  if he failed to plead that in an answer, it would be lost if the evidence came out differently. Things that make you go Hmmmm.

Does this make you remember that story of George Washington that might have been part truth or part myth… but all good story? That he supposedly said, “I cannot tell a lie… I did cut down the cherry tree.”

The opposite of that thinking was German propaganda monster Joseph Goebbels, who believed that no matter how big the lie, people will believe it if you repeat it enough. Sad.

And for pic o’ day:

Huskie

 

 

 

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Pure Determination

Monday, October 6th, 2014

On November 8, 1970, Tom Dempsey kicked a 63-yard field goal as time expired, to give the New Orleans Saints a 19-17 win over the Detroit Lions. Just the act of kicking a winning field goal would not be very news-grabbing today, except for the dogged determination that Tom Dempsey represented.

Tom Dempsey was born without fingers on his right hand, and without toes on his right foot. Despite his anatomy, he was determined to play football and become a place kicker. Tom D

With long hours of practice, he played in college and was good enough to be signed by the New Orleans Saints. On that fateful day in November, the Saints sent Dempsey in to kick from the forty five yard line. When the kicked ball sailed through the uprights, it set an NFL field goal record.

His record setting kick, which incidentally stood for 43 years, generated a great deal of controversy because many thought that his foot and modified shoe actually gave him an improper kicking advantage. So much so that the NFL adopted a rule informally called the Tom Dempsey Rule which required that any shoe that is worn by a player with an artificial limb on his kicking leg must have a kicking surface that conforms to that of a normal kicking shoe.   

Dempsey’s refusal to give up ultimately led him to be inducted into the American Football Association’s Semi Pro Football Hall of Fame. At the time of his record-setting kick, he broke the previous kicking record by 7 yards.

DID YOU KNOW that the opposing kicker for the Detroit Lions had just given them the lead by kicking an 18 yard field goal with 11 seconds to go in the game, just prior to Dempsey kicking his game winner. At the time, his coach called on Dempsey to kick the field goal, by calling him by his nickname… Stumpy. I’m not sure that anyone would want to be called Fatty, Tubby or Stumpy!

wrong

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Hot Dog Bun: Behind the Scenes

Sunday, October 5th, 2014

Last week included going to a Baltimore Orioles playoff game. Of course, that necessitated that I go to the concessions during the game. I needed some ballpark food. That’s when I saw behind the scenes.

All of a sudden, I saw a heavyset fellow behind the counter preparing the hot dog buns. He would take a bun and place it in a paper container. He was preparing dozens of these to be ready for the hot dog. So, a person at the counter could just grab the container and bun and throw in the dog when it was ordered.

That all seemed reasonable. What I wish I had not seen was the entire process. As he readied the buns with his two fingers, he also picked at his pants, scratched his nose, wiped his face and picked up something off the floor. All this behind the scenes stuff was taking place without gloves. Needless to say, I vowed never to order a Camden Yards hot dog. A “note to self”.

This behind-the-scenes also reminded me of some bad past corporate behavior that is now remembered as the Pinto Memo.

The Ford Pinto was a subcompact car that was manufactured during the years of 1971-1980. It was competing with imports from Volkswagen, Datsun and Toyota. That’s what caused the Ford engineers to design a car to increase gas mileage by making it lighter. Consequently, the car was designed with no classic, heavyweight bumper as well as the usual reinforcement spacing between  the rear panel and gas tank.

With only 22 months of concept to production, Ford was billing its Pinto as The Little Carefree Car.   Soon, carefree became scary car as the public became aware that rear-end collisions were causing the cars to blow up into fiery fires from spilled fuel. Critics began to allege that the lack of structure reinforcement was the cause of these fires and resulting deaths. Lawsuits followed.

Thereafter, the magazine Mother Jones printed a memo that had been circulated to Ford management before the Pinto was manufactured and sold. The memo had been stolen from Ford and was never supposed to be seen by the public. It proved that Ford was making decisions based on profit and not safety. The memo said in part the following:

1. With expected unit sales of 11 million Pintos, and a total cost per unit to modify the fuel tank of $11, a recall would have cost Ford $121 million.

2. But, using mathematical formulations of a probable 2,100 accidents that might result in 180 burn deaths, 180 seriously burned victims, and 2,100 burned-out vehicles, the “unit cost” per accident, assuming an out-of-court settlement, came to a probable $200,000 per death, $67,000 per serious injury, and $700 per burned-out vehicle, leaving a grand total of $49.53 million.

3. Allowing the accidents to occur represented a net savings of nearly $70 million.

4. Therefore, a human life was mathematically proven to be worth less than an $11 part.

Despite the probability that this car would cause death, Ford management had made the financial decision to push forward with sales. When news of the memo broke that demonstrated that Ford had been aware of the design defects, criminal charges and civil lawsuits followed. The behind-the-scenes was no longer “hidden behind the counter”. The depth of corporate greed was shocking.

Now swinging a bit to the absurd, pic o’ day shows quite the heavy equipment operator!

dod digging

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Happy Friday!

Thursday, October 2nd, 2014

I was at the Orioles game last night and am headed back to the office this morning. That means I will go in for a bit so I can say “have a great weekend”.   Friday is a great day!

friday

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The Beetle Monument

Wednesday, October 1st, 2014

Yesterday’s stock market was almost like a Grisham fiction novel. The night before, there had been a reported ebola virus diagnosis in the United States, with the possibility of another. All of sudden this virus wasn’t in another country; It was here.

Tekmira Pharmaceutical Company is the leading manufacturer of medication for the ebola virus. It immediately gained 6 dollars a share for its stock price. Can you see why I say that it sounded like a fiction novel? One reported case… a 21 dollar stock moves to 27 dollars. Some shareholders reaped huge profits.

Wednesday’s stock market was down across the board. For some, panic set in. For others, it was a buying opportunity. The “Haves” and the “Have-nots” on opposite sides. An opportunity for some to turn a negative into a positive, if you believe that the market will rebound.

That reminded me of the beetle monument in Enterprise, Alabama. They call it something more formal: The Boll Weevil Monument.monument

It’s a tribute to the beetle that was erected by the town’s citizens, in 1919. It stands as the only monument that was built to honor an agricultural pest.

The story behind it is what happens when a negative becomes a positive. In 1915, beetles appeared from Mexico into the fields of Alabama and began destroying the cotton crops. By 1918, farmers were losing entire crops. They were in financial ruin.

One farmer saw it as an opportunity to switch to peanut farming and convinced other farmers to do the same. It was a switch to success. Soon, the catalyst for change was recognized and honored as reflected in the statute inscription which states,  “In profound appreciation of the Boll Weevil and what it has done as the herald of prosperity…”.

In my law practice, I have seen this same catalyst occur. Some clients have taken their settlement proceeds to effectuate change or bring attention to some product defect. Others have told me that after fighting through their hardship to get better, it made them truly appreciate good health. As Albert Einstein put it, “Out of clutter, find simplicity. From discord, find harmony. In the middle of difficulty lies opportunity”.

DID YOU KNOW that one out of every four “animals” on earth is a beetle?

And from our pic o’ day comes wisdom… or something like that:

on the computer

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