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Archive for The Human Spirit

The Goodness of Routine

Wednesday, May 18th, 2016

Have you dined with us before?” or how about “How was everything?”. I consider these two questions to be in the top five of worthless restaurant questions… and I cannot come up with three more.

I have noticed that no matter how I answer those restaurant questions… I get the same response. No response! So, I have taken it upon myself to try to answer in a way that causes the person asking, to at least pause.

I could answer the “Have you dined with us before” question with an answer of “Yes, 45 minutes ago” or “Yes, back in the early 50′s“. That usually gets some attention!

How was everything?” usually causes me to answer, “Great, how was I as a customer?”.

The point of those observations is that everyone gets in a routine. I know that my observations of mindless routines sound a bit sarcastic… but I do like routine.

In our injury cases, it’s easy to only look at the value of the injuries and the medical bills. But, I also think that the concept of routine… and being knocked out of routine… is also a damage.

At the end of vacation, many people say that “I am so glad to be home”. What they are really saying, is that they are glad to be back to their routine.

All said, I am a fan of routine. And, I am probably stating the obvious.  Kinda like the guy who said that a computer once beat him in chess, but the computer was no match for him in kickboxing. (OK, I just wanted to throw that in, it really has nothing to do with the blog)

Still, the next time someone at the cash register looks down at something and mumbles, “How was everything?” without looking up, I hope you will think about these thoughts on routine… and then ask them “Great… How was I as a customer?”!   It will knock them out of routine!

And for pic o’ day, giraffe routine:





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Politics of Obituary

Tuesday, May 17th, 2016

From the Richmond Times-Dispatch comes a classic obituary. It started with this message:

NOLAND, Mary Anne Alfriend. Faced with the prospect of voting for either Donald Trump or Hillary Clinton, Mary Anne Noland of Richmond chose, instead, to pass into the eternal love of God on Sunday, May 15, 2016, at the age of 68.


Even her picture makes you believe that she had quite a sense of humor… even on Cloudy days!

I guess she just thought that Trump and Hilary







I’m not working on a “last blog”… but this “last message” made me laugh. Well done Mrs. Noland!

And for pic o’ day…







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The Reminder of Human Cork

Sunday, May 15th, 2016

And to get us started for Monday…


I saw an article in this weekend’s edition of Pilot Online about the Human Cork, Angelo Faticoni.  He traveled to Tidewater to beat a world record of buoyancy by attempting to break the world’s endurance record for swimming in saltwater. His goal was to beat the already attained  86 hours.


What got my attention, beyond the curiosity of the story and the pictures that included him just casually reading the paper, was the fact that crowds gathered at the Norfolk city park. They were there just to watch him float.




Reading the article and seeing the picture of the crowd reminded me of what was entertainment “back in the day”. In fact, courtrooms would also fill up when a jury trial took place. In the classic movie To Kill a Mockingbird, the entire town gathered to watch a criminal trial. In 1995, the O J Simpson murder trial was considered the trial of the century, as people across the nation would tune to their TV for the day’s trial events. Basically, it was the start of reality TV.

That is really the exception. In reality, I now root hard for a short jury trial. Last year, I was thankful to settle a case that was originally set for six weeks. I  was concerned that no one could take time to sit as a jury for that long. And of course, I knew that there would be no packed gallery of spectators. We all have shorter attention spans and much more,  trying to grab our attention.

Finally, are you wondering if the Human Cork broke the record?  Remember, the record was 86 hours. I’d love to tell you what you want to hear. Unfortunately, Cork only stayed in the water for 71 hours and 19 minutes. Too bad for Cork! Right?

As a side benefit, the article did note that he lost 35 pounds during his “flotation”. After the unsuccessful try, he weighed a svelte 307. You can also click the pasted site for him to see what secret he took to his grave. (That’s called a blog tease!)

That also begs the question, does a 1000 pounds of cork weigh less than a thousand pounds of steel?

And now our pic o day…


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The Friday Notebook

Thursday, May 12th, 2016

Sometimes I see a possible idea for a blog and I tuck it away. Then, I go back to those “tucked ideas” and I can’t figure out any blog idea. They are just like fingernail polish… without the nails. Or something like that.

So, here’s from the notebook. You’ll see why I ran out of creativity to make them into blogs from just thoughts.

During his entire life, Vincent Van Gogh sold exactly one painting, Red Vineyard at Arles. Makes me feel encouraged if I only write one book!

History tells us that the two robbers crucified next to Jesus were named Dismas and Gestas. You are probably wondering why I thought this was a blog idea. Yes… not so much.

If you have time to watch a presentation from Ted Talks, here’s a good one on How to Spot a Liar by Pamela Meyer. (Here)

And finally, Cinderella’s slippers were originally made out of fur, until a translator changed the story in the 1600′s. I guess 4-inch high-heeled fur sounds a little crazy!

I hope you have a great weekend… be creative out there!

And for pic o’ day…


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Free Speech or Just Against the Law?

Tuesday, May 10th, 2016

Did you know that it is against the law to do the Hitler Sieg Heil Salute in Germany. In fact, you can face jail time. I thought that this story would put into perspective our freedom of speech in the US.

This old story comes from the The story of Adolf the dog.


There are TV shows on how to train your dog to sit, rollover and even bark a song. But in Germany, one man learned that government officials take it seriously when you break the law on the Hitler salute.

A German dog owner taught his dog Adolf to do a Nazi salute. The German Shepherd mixed-breed lifted his paw up high on command, which made the dog look like he was giving the infamous raised-arm greeting that was used by Hitler and all of Germany during World War II.

The dog owner, known as Roland T, would command his dog to “give the salute” right in front of police. Even though it was a dog trick, the Nazi salute is banned in Germany. Multiple times he was told to stop but he wouldn’t stop. Finally, they arrested him,  jailed him because he could not pay the fine.

The article goes on to give us a clue on how crazy this dog owner could carry his obsession. He told police that since the dog was born on Hitler’s birthday, that he also planned to have him put down on the anniversary of Hitler’s suicide.

I guess we learn a bit about free speech laws; a view into crazy; and wonder what this dog owner would have done… if he had owned a Unicorn. OK, maybe we don’t wonder about that last one.

And for pic o’ day… this one made me smile!


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All in the Words!

Monday, May 9th, 2016

Facetious and abstemious  are the only two words that contain all the vowels in their correct order. That brings me to how two words played a role in a recent alimony case.

A lawsuit was filed by a New Jersey man, who claims that he suffered emotional distress when his ex-wife wrote the notations bum and loser on the memo line of her alimony payment checks to him.

Francis Wagner Jr. claimed that the name-calling worsened his health conditions, including cancer and a bad heart, according to the lawsuit.

His ex-wife, Diane Wagner, told the Daily Record that she agreed to pay her former husband $744 a month in spousal support for six years, because she didn’t have the money to fight it in trial. She says that she also has cancer and is terminally ill.

“As far as I’m concerned I can write anything I want on the memo line because it’s a note to myself,” Wagner told the Daily Record. “I was the victim in that marriage. What more blood does he want from me? I pay him religiously.”

Wagner told the Daily Record she also suffered emotional distress when the law firm that filed the suit, Trautmann & Trautmann, posted a photo of one of her alimony checks. The memo line read “alimony/adult child support.” The law firm claimed that they were trying to  “put a stop to that harassment.”

No word on whether the words have stopped. But apparently he keeps cashing the checks! And isn’t life more in the details than in the words!

And for the blog… winner winner chicken dinner!


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Bark at the Dog

Wednesday, May 4th, 2016

If you are an NFL football fan, you might have been watching on the third day of last week’s draft.

The fourth-round pick of the  Indianapolis Colts, was Florida linebacker Antonio Morrison.  There was some question about his past conduct, because he had been arrested on July 2013 for barking at a police dog.

Charges were dropped three days later, with officers stating that they had determined that Morrison didn’t bark at the dog out of malice. On the Florida police report it was noted that Morrison’s defense was that he barked because the dog barked first.

Now that’s a defense. Of course, best not roar at a lion…if they roar at you first!

And this pic o’ day reminded me of how good it makes me feel to be told, “you’re having a bad hair day”. That’s a compliment when you are follically challenged! (Of course, I promise you will never say I look good in a tank top. Not part of the wardrobe! Some things I can control)



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Circus News and Claims

Monday, May 2nd, 2016

Over the weekend (CNN), Ringling Brothers. and Barnum Bailey circus had its last show with the elephants. No longer an elephant in the room for the 145-year-old circus. Yes… they still have the lions! But, when I saw the elephant story, it reminded me of the recent entry from The Luminary, the weekly Muncy, Pennsylvania newspaper.

This might be something that only my dad and I found interesting, but it comes from the section called Peeks of the Past. Here’s the history from April 29, 1881:

135 years ago: Miss Carrie Ort. Robert Barr, of Port Penn, while repairing the canal bridge near the P. & R. depot last Friday, cut himself on the arm with an axe. During the performance at the circus last Saturday night a portion of the seats gave way, injuring a number of persons, the most seriously being George Colley, of East Muncy, whose leg was broken in six places. The management of the circus settled with Mr. Colley’s father by the payment of $82. Some thieves effected an entrance into the clothing store of John H. Roker recently and stole goods to the amount of $100. Thirty Muncy people saw “The Union Spy” in Williamsport Thursday evening.

That little “blurb” has news of a job injury; an injury at the circus; and how much was paid for the negligence of the circus. Plus, you can compare the payment against the worth of the stolen goods at the grocery store. Yep… just some “negligence history” in Muncy!

“If a lion could talk… we couldn’t understand him”- Ludwig Wittgenstein

(Guess you have to be a lion to understand)

And for pic o’ day, I know this feeling!


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Watching the Lions

Tuesday, April 26th, 2016

There are just some things that you can’t take your eyes off. Going to the zoo, you can laugh at the monkeys. You might marvel at the giraffes. You might even wonder if they ever have sore throats, with their long necks… and do they make cough drops for a giraffe?

You don’t wonder about the lions. You just can’t stop watching them! Right?


That’s my lead to our Wednesday pic o’ day. (Went blog light today, since we sent out our April newsletter email) Some animal analysis. This is more ”animal” department. Part wreck… part dinosaur humor.


Ok… you don’t like T-Rex humor? How about some medical humor?


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A Document Worth

Monday, April 25th, 2016

What is it worth? Documents detailing some of the original “Laws of Base Ball” sold for $3.26 million on early Sunday morning, It set a new record for the highest-priced baseball document. (ESPN)  .

The same auction house in charge of this sale also noted that a 1920 New York Yankees’ Babe Ruth jersey sold in an auction for $4.4 million in 2012. That same year,  the Naismith Rules of Basketball sold for $4.3 million.

According to the ESPN article, The original rules of baseball, as written by Daniel Lucius “Doc” Adams, stipulated that the ball could not weigh less than 5¾ ounces, and the bat could be of any length; but no more than 2½ inches at its widest part. The rules also stated that there would be four bases, 30 yards apart, with each base being one square foot.

I always believe that auction items make for a good jury argument, when discussing an injury case. If we put such value on a document and paper, what is the worth of a permanent injury to a leg that causes a lifetime of pain, or a lifetime of worry.

What is it worth to be able to put on an outfit and feel so good… that you don’t even have to look in the mirror?  No scars or pain. Just to feel happy. Emotional value! What is the worth of not having to worry about making that next house payment? Real life values.  Just a thought!

And for pic o’ day…


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