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Advice From Ask Amy

This blog is a little different in that I have basically just pasted an answer from the column Ask Amy. It is a blog written by advice columnist Amy Dickenson. In a recent column, she answered a person who advised her that times were so tough that they would appreciate just receiving money or grocery gift cards instead of gifts or care packages.

The person asking the question did not want to offend gift givers, but she also wanted to know how to best express herself because of her need. This column and question reminded me of the difficulties that many go through during this holiday season.

In my law practice, a day does not go by where a client expresses how difficult it is right now. Sometimes they ask me just to settle their case for whatever I can because they just cannot wait. Of course, it bothers me greatly to see insurance companies take advantage of that.

With that in mind, I paste the following. An answer that made me think.

DEAR OVERLY-GIFTED: Your situation highlights the ongoing problem of hunger in this country. According to the anti-poverty group Feeding America, in 2011, 4.8 million seniors (over age 60) were food insecure. The organization reports that in your home state of New York, 1 in 7 people don’t have enough to eat.

I hope you are doing everything possible to find sources of healthy food in your community. The Feeding America website (feedingamerica.org) has a pull-down menu listing state-by-state food resources. Many local churches host weekly food giveaways where you can pick up staples. A social worker can work with you to qualify for other benefits, including heating assistance, or help with your medications.

In terms of your generous friends, I think you should express your gratitude, and also do what you can to direct their giving in ways that will be more useful to you.

You can express to them, “Every year you are generous and send me a ‘care package’ at Christmastime. I appreciate it so much. This year, I’m hoping to receive gifts that will help tide me over during the very lean times. I’d really appreciate a grocery gift card or help with my utility bill during these cold months. Regardless of what you choose to do, I know the winter will be less cold, due to your kindness.

And for pic o’ day, I am posting another “on Santa’s lap”.

cat on lap

A Golfer’s Hole in 3

From the  Virginia Lawyers Weekly comes a case report about a golfer in Fairfax. It could be titled The case of  the golfer who falsely celebrated.

A charity sponsored a golf tournament that included a special $5,000 prize for anyone that shot a hole-in-one on the 13th hole. Based on the tournament rules, anyone that was over the age of 50 was entitled to play from the forward tees instead of the longer distance men’s tee box.

The golfer first hit a ball from the men’s tees,  that landed on the green. He then stepped up to the forward tees, where he was entitled to shoot, and scored a hole-in-one. He then began celebrating his $5,000 prize until his celebration was cut short when he was told that he had not won the prize, because of his original shot from the men’s tee box that did not go in the hole. He argued. They did not change their mind. He sued the charity for his claim of $5,000.

The defense retained Scott King, the current head coach of the George Mason University golf team and former head coach at William and Mary. King is also a longtime golf teacher and a 19-year member of the Professional Golfer’s Association. He was easily qualified to give court testimony as an expert on the hole-in-one claim.

King testified that under the rules of golf, the golfer’s score should have been scored as a “3”. First, the shot from the men’s tee box. Then, when he elected to shoot from the forward tee, he should have been assessed a penalty stroke. Finally, the ball that went into the hole on that shot then counted as stroke three. The court returned a verdict for the charity and against the golfer. For the golfer… it was strike three!

DID YOU KNOW that Florida law forbids rats to leave the ships that are docked in Tampa Bay? I know… what is that?

And for pic  o’ day, I am posting two pictures that I took yesterday. It’s a duck sitting on top of a BWW that was sitting in our office parking lot. Craziness!

Duck 1

 

Duck-2-300x225

To the Baseball Game

     One of the most well known baseball songs is the 1908 “Take Me Out to the Ballgame“. The author was inspired when he got on a subway and saw a sign that read, “Baseball Today- Polo Grounds”.   Now it is regularly sung during seventh inning stretches in several major league ballparks.

     I feel a bit inspired by baseball, for this blog. Several months ago, I attended a fundraiser for CARITAS, which helps provide shelter, food and necessities for people in need. At the event, they had several items up for auction. The Richmond Flying Squirrels baseball team had a suite package up for auction. Well… we won the package. We decided to make it a Firm baseball day.

     Since that time, we have been pointing to this Monday with excitement. We are closing the offices in Virginia Beach and Richmond and going to the game. It’s a noon game. Baseball keeps you alert.

     After the game, we’ll post pictures and some video on the site. I wish that the South Carolina office could have come up, but they are holding the Fort for us all. There is a Red Sox single-A team stadium that is in walking distance to the Greenville office. Might be a good excuse for more baseball.

     For now, it’s the Richmond Flying Squirrels. They are the Double-A farm team for the San Francisco Giants. I’m also looking forward to seeing the mascot Nutsy.  He never says anything, so I guess he never argues; probably wouldn’t be a good lawyer.

      One of our paralegals, Amy, will be throwing out the first pitch. Now that’s some pressure. I’m supposed to to be on their radio broadcast around the 6th inning.

     It’s baseball and I probably went overboard for the food in the suite. Hope the storms can hold up! Good times for the Dog Days of Summer.  If you decide to tune in during the game, Sports Radio 910 carries the games. (click here)

     For pic o’ day I went with a fighting catch. I expect to be more relaxed.

 

 

National Kidney Foundation Golf Tournament

I’m on vacation but thought I’d give you a bit of video.  On Tuesday, we had the Kidney Foundation Golf Tournament.  I hope you’ll take a gander.  Maybe it will even encourage you to want to be a part of the Foundation in fighting kidney disease, or want to be one of the sponsors or players next year.

The rain held up and we had 23 teams of four golfers participating.  Anyway, we even put some piano music to it even though I’ve never seen a piano on the golf course.  Maybe a look at the greens will give you an escape if you are stuck inside.

 

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