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Archive for Misc.

The July 1 Laws

Tuesday, June 30th, 2015

July 1st is the day that new laws  go into effect that were enacted by the Virginia General Assembly in this past session. Drivers can now legally cross over double yellow lines to pass pedestrians and bicyclists safely.

In the state of Virginia, farmers can now grow industrial hemp as part of a university research program. Do you think that means that college professors will research whether their students pay attention… while smoking “the ganga”?

Employers cannot ask employees or prospective employees for the username and passwords of their personal accounts.

Bicycles and mopeds are now included in the list of vehicles under the law that governs being ticketed for following a vehicle too closely.6

Here’s one that students should appreciate. Virginia is now reducing the number of standardized tests administered to elementary and middle schools students. There used to be 22 tests given. Now… 17.

And here’s one for the wild. Sunday is no longer a day of rest for wild birds and animals. That law is now repealed and Sunday hunting is now permitted. I guess that means that we need to get the word out to those birds and animals. Perhaps we should stand next to those signs that show where deer know to cross the road.

One last one that impacts the pocketbook. As of midnight, we are now paying 5 cents more per gallon on our gas. Doesn’t taxation feel special! Thanks Governor.

And for pic o’ day, here’s some Wednesday cat dancing:

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What Makes a Good Lawyer?

Sunday, June 28th, 2015

This week during an interview of an applicant, I was asked, “what are you looking for in an attorney?”.

A few years ago I was asked by a  sales manager at a local TV station to speak to their salesforce. I was to talk on the topic of what we were looking for in a person who sold us TV advertising.

In preparation for my morning talk at their station, I asked the manager what he thought were the qualities of a good TV salesperson. He summarized by saying that his group was basically in two sections. Instead of saying the lazy and the workers, he classified them as order-takers and true sales people. As he put it, someone could just show up and take orders for commercials and they would earn a decent living. Those who really made money were the sales people. Those who were not satisfied just to take orders.

An old Chinese proverb says that One dog barks at something and a hundred bark at the sound of his bark. 

Several years ago, a renowned marksman was traveling through the U.S.  He stopped in a small town and saw evidence of amazing target shooting all over the town. On trees, on walls, on fences, and on barns he saw targets with a bullet hole in the exact center of the bull’s eye target.

The marksman determined to find the person responsible for such incredible shooting. When he found him he said, “this is the most incredible shooting that I have ever seen. How in the world did you do it?”. “Easy as pie”, replied the man. “I shot first and drew the circles afterward”.

As I continued interviewing potential candidates this past week for attorney positons, I thought about these various thoughts. What makes a good lawyer? Ultimately, it’s those who stop talking and instead start doing.

And for pic o’ day, here’s a South Carolina TV station who appparently thinks that math has become a problem.

 

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Church and Law Notebook

Monday, June 22nd, 2015

I benefit from always having my iPad with me except when I lose it. I guess that’s what Captain Obvious would say. I now have lost 2 iPads by the usual forgetfulness. I left one on top of my car roof and drove off. The other got mistakenly thrown out at a gas station. while on a trip (at least that’s how I think that I lost them)

I say that I benefit because I can always save or bookmark things quickly and come back to them for blog ideas. Sometimes, I realize that I have items that have been with me for a while. So, here’s from the “notebook”.

This  blog is basically a collection of things that you might classify as church humor or might hear as a joke from the pulpit. I know what you are thinking, “how is this in a legal blog?”. My reply, “if you classify it from the notebook… anything goes!”.

The church decided that it needed to call a meeting to vote on some church business. The deacons got into a heated discussion over buying a chandelier for the church. So, one man stood and formally made the motion by saying, “I move that we buy a chandelier for the church”. Then, a second man stood and seconded the motion.

     One of the members then stood to address the motion. He said the following, “I’d like to speak against this motion. First, no one knows how to spell it to even order it. Second, no one knows how to play it. Third and most importantly… what this church really needs is some lights.” Boom!

And here are the pic o’s…

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And this would be considered dating advice?

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I suppose she might answer something like, “That is quite a Revelation… and I guess that’s a signal for my Exodus”.

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“Mini” Driver

Monday, June 15th, 2015

This is a blog about a young driver making a difference. As a Firm, we have been proudly involved in a small financial way as we have watched Timmy Tyrrell grow up physically as a driver, and a force to fight cancer.

One of our paralegals, Amy A., brought a special driver to my attention a few years ago as she told me about named Timmy “Mini” Tyrrell. He is known as Mini and his driving has become Mini’s Mission.

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Driving his car in races on any given Sunday, he has won more than 50 races. It is amazing that he is only 10-years-old, driving against some drivers who are 3 or 4 times his age. In fact, racetracks that are Nascar sanctioned require that drivers be at least 16-years-old. So, for now, he is unique as a competitor.

More importantly, he is amazing for what he has accomplished as a driver, beyond his wins. Here’s a story with video from news station WHSV.com.

His true passion is helping kids fight cancer. That has become Mini’s Mission. Initially, he started by raising dollars and awareness on a personal level. Then, he decided to use his skills as a driver.

That caught the attention of Nascar driver Jeff Gordon. He matches every dollar that “Mini” raises.

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To date, Mini has raised more than $270,000 for pediatric cancer research. He now holds a kick ball tournament to raise funds. There’s more information at kick-it.org.

He’s a driver that I think will be doing big things on the circuit, in years to come; And more importantly, doing big things to help fight cancer.

 

 

And for pic o’ day, this makes me think of self-serve fast serveL

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Bank Robbery by Taxi

Wednesday, June 10th, 2015

I can almost imagine that Stanley Geddie started out his day by repeating what the Saturday Night Live character Stuart Smalley used to say to himself in the mirror, “I’m good enough. I’m smart enough. And doggone it, people like me”.

I say that because it seems that Mr. Geddie had quite the unusual confidence when he decided to take a taxi to a Tallahassee bank… to rob the bank!

According to the story in the NY Daily News, when the taxi arrived to the front door of the bank, Geddie said to the driver regarding payment for the ride, “I will take care of you when I come out”.

Then Geddie went inside the bank and headed directly to the bank manager.  According to reports, he told the bank manager that he was carrying a .357 handgun and C4 plastic explosives. Then, he threatened to “blow this place up,”

Then, he demanded $100,000 from the manager, who ”invited” Geddie into his office and then closed his office door. That’s when a teller called the police.

When police arrived, the taxi driver told them that Geddie was drunk and had not paid his $25.50 cab fare. The officers entered the manager’s office. There, they found Geddie sitting down. He appeared to be “intoxicated and spaced out,” court records show. The police then used a stun gun on Geddie after he refused to be arrested. (I’m not sure what refused to be arrested means)

The police then searched him and determined that he did not have any weapons in his possession… but he was  wearing two pair of pants. (I would rather order two dinners than wear two pair of pants)

He later told the police that he was wearing both pants because he had planned to remove the outer pair as a disguise.

Geddie was charged with petty theft for the unpaid taxi fare, resisting an officer, robbery without a weapon and two probation violations. Of course, that still begs the question, “Would the taxi driver have recognized him after he removed his outside disguise pants?’.

I am still fascinated that he told the driver to wait while he went in to rob the bank. And the driver was still waiting when the police arrived!

And for pic o’ day, this is all business!

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Categories : Current Affairs, Misc.
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A Curse Word Amendment

Thursday, May 28th, 2015

This is a blog about curse words… or it could also be called “Times have sure changed!’.

In 1897, the state of Maine enacted a statute that banned boxing from being shown in films. Then, in 1915, the U.S. Supreme Court decided a case that held that there could be censorship in films because they were considered commerce and not art; which meant that there were no free speech first amendment protection.

Wikipedia provides an interesting listing of the various content that was disallowed in early films. (here) Such censorship ranged from language and subject matter, to content that still would not be allowed today.

The Motion Picture Production Code was drawn up by a Republican lawyer/former Postmaster General by the name of Will H. Hays. He prepared guidelines for filmmakers to assist in what would become standards of the Motion Picture Producers and Distributors of America. It was known as the Hays Code, which was enforced under the Hays Office or Board.

That brings me to the infamous  movie Gone With The Wind. Prior to that movie, curse words were not allowed.

On November 1, 1939, an amendment was passed that would effect the dialogue of that movie.  The amendment still recognized that using the words “hell” or “damn” were still not allowed unless their use “shall be essential and required for portrayal, in proper historical context, of any scene or dialogue based upon historical fact or folklore … or a quotation from a literary work, provided that no such use shall be permitted which is intrinsically objectionable or offends good taste.”

With that amendment, Scarlett O’Hara tearfully asked Rhett Butler (Clark Gable), “Where shall I go? What shall I do?”. With that, a nation was shocked when Butler uttered his last words to her, “Frankly, my dear, I don’t give a damn“. In 2005, that quotation was voted as the number one movie line of all time by the American Film Festival.

My how times have changed. I hope you have a great weekend!

And for our pic o’ day:

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Oh Those Motivating Quotes!

Monday, May 25th, 2015

Coming back after a long weekend can be a bit challenging. But here we go! Sometimes it’s good to grab a quote to stir up some motivation.

‘Fool me once, shame on … shame on you. Fool me… You can’t get fooled again!’
- George Bush

OK, maybe that’s not one I was thinking about. But, here’s a thought from the Our Daily Bread message boards that reminded me of another quote:

A doctor’s surgery suite had a notice hanging on the reception area. It invited patients who were in the check- in line, to pray for the doctor… and for each other as they waited their turn. That reminded me of Oswald Chamber’s statement that, ” ‘Prayer changes things’ is not as close to the truth as saying ‘Prayer changes me and then I change things’ “. A wonderful reminder of the power of prayer.

And on to pic o’ day. Because the “Deflatriots” and Tom Brady are still in the news, a look back at popular Tom Hanks’ classic movie…

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A Good Night’s Sleep

Thursday, May 21st, 2015

This is the my blog until Tuesday, as we head into the weekend and Memorial Day. I wanted to write something about relaxation. That led me to thinking about a bed.

In the time of Shakespeare, mattresses were held securely to bed frames by ropes. A person could pull on the rope to tighten the mattress. The more a person pulled on the rope, the more the bed felt firmer. That’s where we get the expression Goodnight… sleep tight!

I hope it’s a great weekend and that you do get some relaxation. And for Monday, a time to remember those who have died in the armed services, protecting us.

And for pic o’ day

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The Cheating Subway Ride

Sunday, May 3rd, 2015

On April 21, 1980, Rosie Ruiz was credited as the winner of the Boston Marathon in the female category. Her finishing time of 2:31:56 was credited as the fastest female time in Boston Marathon history and at that time, was the third fastest female time ever recorded for a marathon. In fact, this photo shows how exhausted she was as she crossed the finish line.

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After the race, the men’s winner Bill Rodgers became suspicious as he watched her being interviewed as the winner. He noticed that she was unable to recall specific things about the race that most runners know by heart such as intervals and splits which indicate her cardiovascular pacing from training. Other observers noted that she was not panting or coated in sweat, as expected after running such a race. In fact, they were very surprised that her thighs appeared strangely flabby and fatter than expected for a world class runner.

When Ruiz was asked at the finish line why she didn’t seem winded after such a run, she replied, “I got up with a lot of energy this morning”.

According to Eagletribune.com, in an article titled Rosie’s Run, an investigation into her “win” then began.  It led them to a woman on a bus who told this story:

Susan Morrow went to her first New York City Marathon in 1979 to watch a friend who was among the 8,000 entries. The Greenwich Village resident hopped a train at the West 4th Street station.

“I saw this woman in running clothes with her head down,” says Morrow, a free-lance photographer and designer. “The seat next to her was open. So I sat there.”

Morrow wanted to talk to the woman, but was afraid to because she appeared upset.

The woman said, “Do you know what time it is?” recalls Morrow.

Soon they made introductions.

“She said, ‘Hi, I’m Rosie Ruiz,’ ” says Morrow. “I’ll never forget that.”

Rosie Ruiz told Morrow she had hurt her ankle about the 10-mile mark.

Before long, the two women realized they were both headed to the same place: the marathon finish line at Tavern on the Green in Central Park.

They got off at Columbus Circle and made their way through a series of barricades manned by police officers and race volunteers.

“Every time we got to a barricade, she would put her arm on my shoulder, like she was leaning on me, and the police would let us through.”

At one barricade, the limping Ruiz stopped at a table, grabbed a can of juice, opened it and poured it over her head. “I remember thinking it was a little weird,” says Morrow. “But I figured that’s what all runners do.”

They reached the last barricade, 50 feet from the finish line. “Rosie said, ‘I’m an injured runner,’ and all of sudden, about 10 people surround her and start helping her out,” says Morrow. “They took her to the medical area and I got to go, too. It was right at the finish line.”

A few minutes later, Morrow says, Ruiz came back and asked for her telephone number.

“We’ll have lunch some time next week,” she said.

A week later, Morrow’s phone rang.

“Susan, hi, it’s Rosie,” the caller said.

“Rosie?” Morrow replied, caught off guard.

“And she said, “You forgot me already,”’ says Morrow.

The pair never got together for lunch.

Six months later, Morrow was home watching Boston Marathon highlights on TV.

“I saw this woman on the winner’s stand with the wreath on her head,” says Morrow. “And I almost fell out of my chair. That was the woman I sat with on the train.

Soon after, a full investigation commenced that included interviewing Mrs. Morrow; as well as searching through camera footage throughout the race which never showed Ruiz; and also talking to designated race spotters, who did not remember seeing her.

It was determined that she had actually left a pack of runners at the beginning of the race, taken a subway to a stop about a mile from the finish line, where she rejoined the race as part of the fastest pack, as reported by two Harvard students who were part of the crowd of spectators.

Predictably, Ruiz was disqualified and the second place finisher was flown back to Boston and recognized as the winner. The story is still told as the cheater who ran the Boston Marathon.

As I was reading a “look-back” at the Ruiz story, I glanced down and saw another story.

This week,  Bloomsberg News reports that Warren Buffett has told reporters that Geico is implementing premium rate increases because their pretax gain at Geico has fallen in the first quarter. As indicated by Buffett, Berkshire Hathaway counts on the profits of Geico in its porfolio, to generate funds so they can invest in stocks and takeovers. Those Geico ads are sure funny.

 

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Signs of the Times

Thursday, April 23rd, 2015

One summer during college, I sold vacuum cleaners. Yes… vacuum cleaners. I remember during one sales training that the manager reminded us all that we needed to be enthusiastic because no one woke up in the morning and said to themselves, “Today, I am going to buy a vacuum cleaner”.

Sometimes I feel like that about a Friday blog. So, today I am enthusiastic!

I am using this blog to attach a couple of pictures that were sent to me. I hope that you see the humor in these altered signs.

First is a man’s stubbornness… I suspect that you can guess that this was not sent to me by a man.

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Second is a bit of Shakespeare:

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I hope you have a wonderful weekend!

 

 

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