Happy Festivus!

November 28, 2007

OK, Festivus is not technically until December 23. But, I just couldn’t resist! So stop crying and fight your father, and celebrate Festivus with Seinfeld and all his friends!!

LDS Church Interactive Music Player

October 25, 2007

If you have not played around with this yet, go ahead and try it. I believe it is among the many new features at the “new” LDS.org church website, and it is certainly one of the most amusing ones. You can instantly transpose keys (helpful for choir, aspiring but not yet fully functional pianists, and adaptation to other musical instruments), increase, decrease beat, etc. It’s quite nice! Try it out if you have a bored moment…

Kantian Consumerism

October 22, 2007

„Handle nur nach derjenigen Maxime, von der du zugleich wollen kannst, dass sie ein allgemeines Gesetz werde.“

“Act only according to that maxim whereby you can at the same time will that it should become a universal law.”

While driving alone the 26 miles into work from my comfortable suburban home to downtown Dallas the other day, I heard on NPR a reference to a game I could play to see “how many ‘Earths’ of natural resources it would take to sustain all 6.6 billion humans… if everyone lived like [me].” Read the rest of this entry »

RE: Long-Lost Musty Metaphors of Yesteryear

October 22, 2007

Today I reminded a colleague of the oft-quoted maxim in patent law that “a patent may not, like a ‘nose of wax,’ be twisted one way to avoid anticipation [finding of invalidity because something in the prior art already did what the patent describes] and another to find infringement.” He just looked at me blankly and asked “what in the world is a ‘nose of wax’?!?” and suggested that I must be making that up or misquoting something. Read the rest of this entry »

American Accent

January 12, 2007

Following the link on BCC’s sidebar brought me to another of those little online American English quizzes, not dissimilar to the one I blogged about nearly two years ago here in which the quiz concluded that I spoke “General American English” which I further redefined as “California English”. The new quiz shows similar results:

What American accent do you have?
Your Result: The Midland

“You have a Midland accent” is just another way of saying “you don’t have an accent.” You probably are from the Midland (Pennsylvania, southern Ohio, southern Indiana, southern Illinois, and Missouri) but then for all we know you could be from Florida or Charleston or one of those big southern cities like Atlanta or Dallas. You have a good voice for TV and radio.

The West
The Inland North
North Central
The Northeast
The South
What American accent do you have?
Quiz Created on GoToQuiz

This time the conclusion is that I have a “Midland” accent. Does this mean I will fit right in in the British Midlands?

F***ing Austria!

December 19, 2006

Since most of you know that I am not one typically giving to swearing, I hope you will forgive me for the title of this post. I am really not intending this as a crass word. This post is about a town called “F***ing” (pronounced “foo-king” in German) Austria. Apparently, the folks in F***ing Austria have had trouble with British tourists removing the F***ing sign (Ronan- if I read about that sign disappearing in the near future, I will know who to call…: Read the rest of this entry »

Smiles for the day!

November 16, 2006

This video of quadruplets laughing just brings a smile to my face. 

But, just imagine if instead of laughing, they were all crying.

FLSR Reunion

October 18, 2006

One of BYU’s best-kept secrets, the Foreign Language Student Residence (FLSR), is having an alumni reunion on Friday, October 20, 2006 at 6:30 p.m.  Ben Spackman’s sister Erin Spackman Rushforth and her husband Michael are the chapter chairs and have organized this reunion, which we are all eagerly anticipating. 

It is difficult to describe just how much the FLSR enriched the BYU experience for most who lived there.  In my own family, I lived in the German and Spanish houses (1995 – 1998), my sister lived in the Spanish house (1998), and my brother lived in the Japanese house (2000).  My wife lived in the French house (1996 – 1998), and her brother lived in the German house (1994 – 1995).  My wife also has several cousins who lived in various houses, including French, Italian, German, and Arabic.  We know literally dozens of people, including many in our own families, who met their spouses while living there.  We have many continuing friendships from that experience, including the Bloggernacle’s own J. Max Wilson and Ben Spackman, among many others.  It is a truly unique experience and one that I highly recommend to any lucky enough to have BYU on their horizons, or are currently attending. 

We hope any alumni out there will decide to show up at the reunion on Friday!

Is Coca-Cola against the Word of Wisdom?

October 3, 2006

What about deep-fried Coke?  After all, it won the prize this year for the most creative food contest this year at the Texas State Fair.


Here is how the Texas delicacy of deep-fried Coke is made:

Read the rest of this entry »

“Case of Incipient Verbal Diarrhea”

September 29, 2006

Witness depositions are often very dry affairs.  A lot of mundane questions about subtle details that may or may not make a difference at trial- they are often used for discovering information, gaining admissions, and testing theories. 

But sometimes they get very animated. For  an amusing look at one such deposition, take a look at this one in Texas. (We watched this recently at a NITA deposition training- it is quite an entertaining look at an example of "depositions gone wild":


(By the way, the witness is right, sometimes we lawyers DO get a "case of insipient verbal diarrhea". . .)


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