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A Curse Word Amendment

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:


Hard or Hardly Working

In the movie A League of Their Own, Tom Hanks played the role of  baseball manager Jimmy Dugan, for a women’s’ professional baseball league team. Geena Davis played the role of real life catcher Dottie Hinson. As the star of the team, she had great sway over whether the team would listen to their manager.

At one point, Davis’ character tells Hanks that she is going to quit because it’s all too hard and taking too great a toll on her life. Hanks then challenges her by saying, “It’s supposed to be hard. If it wasn’t hard, everyone would be doing it. It’s the hard part that makes us great”.

Movies are known to have great quote lines. In a curious way, the movie The Empire Strikes Back also gives a lesson on effort. The wise character of Yoda says to Luke Skywalker, “do or do not. There is no try”.

Yesterday I walked up front to find three conference rooms with their doors closed. Lawyers were inside preparing their clients or meeting regarding cases. In movies or TV shows, the story is usually revolving around the case in the courtroom. In reality, the hard stuff goes on behind closed doors. Preparation is not supposed to be easy; it’s supposed to be hard. It’s the hard part that makes the case.

DID YOU KNOW that the main library at Indiana University sinks over an inch each year? When it was built, the engineers failed to take into account the weight of all the books that would occupy the building.

And for pic o’ day, it looks like we have a plan in action:

some help

Behind the Scenes

     In the production of movies, I always enjoy seeing behind the scenes in “how it is made”.  At the beginning of some movies that originated at MGM, they have a lion roaring on camera. This is a behind-the-scenes look at how that was originally shot.


     In the movie “Ghostbusters”, there is one scene where a giant Stay Puft Marshmallow man is marching through the city. Once again, the real shooting of the scene makes it look a little less intimidating to the “city”.


     At our law office, the behind the scenes is just about as glamorous. Here’s a picture from our office cameras that the team sent for the blog; me arriving to work:

JB camera

     Yogi Berra said about effort in baseball that, “Baseball is 90% mental and the other half is physical”. Woody Allen said that “90% of all success is just showing up”. For the office…there are no shortcuts!


     Of course, the pic o’ day cartoon is also a reminder that it doesn’t hurt to bring some mind to work too:


Expensive Movie Food


My wife and I are headed to the Masters in April. It’s our first time to go and it’s something that we have been thinking about doing,  for a while.

I have been talking to friends about the do’s and don’ts. I learned that you should not take your cellphone or you will be asked to leave and barred for life. Supposedly, candies are even put in green wrappers, in case the wind blows them on to the course. They don’t want anything detracting from the golf course.

Everyone says that we will be surprised by the cost of food. Apparently, food is very reasonably priced. Prices haven’t changed with the times.  “Price gouging” would be frowned upon at the Masters!


Contrary to the Masters,  there is no price restriction on food at movie theaters. I mean, you can get some real good deals. Where else can you buy Milk Duds for $6.00. A small popcorn, which is really the size of a child’s head, is something like  $7.00. You get to your seat and realize that the pit in your stomach is not from the butter;  you now will be forced to take out a second mortgage on your home.

One man in Michigan decided that he was tired of paying outrageous prices for popcorn, candies and sodas. He has filed   a class action lawsuit for price gouging.  It all started when his local theater told him, by sign, that he could not bring his own food to the theater.

He called an attorney and asked, “Can they do that?”. The attorney did some research and decided that the pricing violated  the Michigan Consumer Protection Act. A lawsuit was then filed against AMC Theatres.

I probably would have given the advice to just not go to the movies; so I’m very interested to see the outcome on this case. Maybe they will end up making a movie about it.

And for pic o’ day, I thought I’d reach into some golfing photos where real can be real attention grabbing:

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