Sunday, May 31, 2009

I'm Putting It In Print

This is the first year that Q will not be spending the entire summer with the after-school camp folks. Since Leo is home all day twiddling his thumbs, we're keeping her home with him except for a week here and there. Should be interesting.

As for me, the work project is headed into full swing starting tomorrow with a kickoff meeting. It's the first time my Work Husband has ever worked with a real Project Manager and I'm looking forward to him seeing a more professional approach to things. Should be interesting.

I've also slooooowly been gaining some weight back, so I am going to try very, very hard to be disciplined in both my eating and my exercise. I will try to do a midday workout at my gym, and read Team of Rivals, five days a week (Monday through Friday). This clashes with the work project kicking into high gear, and may force me into a pre-work exercise schedule (shudder!) rather than midday, but one way or another, I AM NOT BUYING THE NEXT SIZE UP! The best tool to avoid wrong-eating is sleep. Sleep is the best friend of the calorie-conscious. Getting plenty of sleep, plus working longer days while the consultants are on site, plus adding another hour and a half for working out results in some rather fuzzy math. Should be interesting.

Q and I signed up to go on a weekend camping trip to a Girl Scout camp in mid-June, with the other Girl Scout leader (whom I really like) and her daughter. Anybody remember Sally? Yeah. Should be interesting.

Tomorrow is June 1. I'm going to get my game on, people.

Saturday, May 30, 2009

Is It A Promise Or A Threat?

This post is primarily for my own informational purposes, however, any comments that might serve to enlighten me are always welcome.

--Yes, I'm beating a dead horse. It's what I do. You can watch if you want.--

There's a big difference between defining what a promise is versus defining what happens if a promise is broken.

A promise is a promise.

What happens when a promise is broken is NOT a promise.

So, is "assumpsit" a promise, or does "assumpsit" mean a promise has been broken?

I think the term is used to argue that first of all, there was a promise to do or pay something. That promise is pretty much a simple contract between two parties. Basically, assumpsit is establishing the existence of this assumed contract. Then, I guess farther down in the case, it is argued that the simple contract was breached. But I don't think the term assumpsit, in and of itself, has much to do with stating that the contract was not upheld. I think the breaching part is separate from the assumpsit part. But you can't accuse someone of breaching a contract without first establishing the existence of the contract. So that's where assumpsit plays its part.

It's just confusing when you read that assumpsit is an action. An action, to the uninitiated like me, sounds like something you charge somebody with. Like murder. I mean, why bring an action against someone for making a promise? Well, no, that is of course not the way it works. The action is brought for breaking the promise. And yet, an assumpsit itself is not the breaking of the promise, but the laying out of what was understood to be promised in the first place.

Strange that breach is not part of the name of the action. I guess that the breach part is a no-brainer, doesn't need to be part of the name of the action, even though that's why the guy went to a lawyer in the first place. Unless I've got it completely wrong, and that's certainly possible/likely. Or maybe it's a historical thing, and they don't use assumpsit anymore. I mean, in today's world, who HASN'T heard of breach of contract? The Smother Brothers certainly have.

Which reference you rely upon can make a big difference! (duh!)

Compare the definition below (from

ASSUMPSIT ("he has undertaken," from Lat. assumere), a word applied to an action for the recovery of damages by reason of the breach or non-performance of a simple contract, either express or implied, and whether made orally or in writing. Assumpsit was the word always used in pleadings by the plaintiff to set forth the defendant's undertaking or promise, hence the name of the action. Claims in actions of assumpsit were ordinarily divided into (a) common or indebitatus assumpsit, brought usually on an implied promise, and (b) special assumpsit, founded on an express promise. Assumpsit as a form of action became obsolete after the passing of the Judicature Acts 1873 and 1875. (See further CONTRACT; PLEADING and TORT.)

with the definition given previously in the comments from the preceding post (from

"Assumpsit is an express or implied agreement to perform an oral contract. An express assumpsit is where one undertakes verbally or in writing, not under seal, or on record, to perform an act, or to pay a sum of money to another.

An implied assumpsit is where one has not made any formal promise to do an act or to pay a sum of money to another, but who is presumed from his conduct to have assumed an obligation to do the just and fair thing. Common or indebitatus assumpsit is brought for the most part on an implied promise. Special assumpsit is founded on an express promise or undertaking."

Thursday, May 28, 2009

What's "assumpsit" mean?

Being obsessed with people's career development, especially my own, I read blog archives. They are a great way to watch the progression, the transmogrification (btw, if anybody has any pull with Transmogriflaw, please ask her to post an update, or start a new blog, or get permission to post an update about her, even, maybe?). This kinda sucks because I totally want to comment on somebody's observation from three years ago. I feel like I'm hobnobbing with ghosts.

So, define "assumpsit". Who cares, right?

It's a word. And it matters. I love that it matters. I love that a WORD matters. I love that Prof. Warren's first utterance on the first day of her 1L class at Harvard is something along the lines of "Explain what the first word in the case means." And the first word is "assumpsit".

Sigh. (...the kind of sigh where you smile and gaze up longingly at someone, like a real dork, exactly the kind of dork that should be beaten up on a daily basis, just as Tranny says.)

Of course, it's easy to love from a distance, with nothing at stake personally. As long as she's asking somebody else, it's wonderfully thrilling. Not that I'll ever meet her (she'd chew me up and spit me out if she even bothered to breathe the same air as me) or step foot anywhere near HLS, nor do I deserve to, but still...aaahhhh...that is cool. I must remember how cool I think that is. I must remember how much I love words, and how much they matter.

Wednesday, May 27, 2009

9 Reasons For Leaning Toward Law

For Reason #1, see the previous post. For most of what I'm talking about in this post, go check out Cee's post over at Starting To Melt about career direction, professional motivation and the passion that drives us.

Then check out the comments, because half of this post is contained in her comment section. ease your clicking burden, I guess I can reprint it here:

"Your post, and the comments contained here, [are] a big, big part of what makes the idea of being a lawyer appealing to me (OH...I just posted Reason #2! Rock on!) It's people like you that make people [like] me LIKE people like you. And want to be one of you. And work shoulder-to-shoulder with you. You're smart, dedicated, articulate, ambitious, educated, focused, determined, [disciplined,] you understand the whole working mommy thing, along with all the other commenters here...why wouldn't I want to be a part of that? Why do people ask me why I want that? Better to ask: Why would I NOT want that? Why would I NOT want to be a member of that team?"

So! There you have it. Reason #2: Because I Want To Be One Of Those Cool Chicks!

I want to be among smart, focused, educated, intelligent, disciplined, ambitious, articulate wordsmiths. I want to be respected by them, to work with them, to go to gatherings with them and I want to argue against them and I want to be influenced by them and inspired by them and I want it to matter to my bottom line. I don't want to be just a groupie.

Reason #3: I want wordsmithing and analysis to be a part of my paycheck.

And then here comes Reason #4 (yes, I totally hogged up her comment section, essentially writing this post...sorry Cee!):

"...You know where you say "Last year...I loved the crazy complication of litigating construction defect claims" and the other stuff you got to do/learn/try? Now, after [gaining] some experience and the confidence that comes with it, you find yourself thinking, "So what?"...well...

Yeah. Exactly."

Reason #4: I don't want building a test server to be a part of my paycheck anymore. (That totally gets the big "So what??!!!") Although that is really more of a reason to leave my current job, and not so much a reason to go into the legal profession in particular.

And while I'm on a roll, here's Reason #5 (but my current job does this already, sorta...this is more along the lines of "Why did I leave my Ph.D. program?"...well, because...see below):

I want to have the problem presented to me, I don't want to have to be totally creative and frame the question out of thin air, as academicians must do. I want the question to come to me already fleshed out, with an accompanying set of applicable rules and precedent just waiting to be matched to it. And I will be the match-maker. Or that is part of what I suppose I might be able to do as an attorney.

Reason #6: Intimately Knowing (and personally possessing some agency within) The System

I want to know more about The System, things like Civil Procedure, Estates and Trusts. I want to be INFORMED, to feel like a true grown-up who understands how things work. This knowing-the-system thing was actually one of the reasons Obama briefly mentions for his motivation for going to law school in Dreams From My Father.

Reason #7: Working With People

I want to have to talk to people as part of my paycheck. Yeah, go ahead and laughingly answer "Oh, poor naive say that NOW..." But really...I want more face time with people, either with clients (meh...not a LOT...clients are clients are clients...I already provide a service...I know what clients are like...) or with other lawyers. Ideally, I'd like to work on a team. But I realize that is not very likely to happen.

Reason #8: Flexibility, Professional Options

Do y'all see what Cee is proposing? She can go in so many different directions professionally! I guess I could sorta do that in IT, too, if I loved, loved, loved the work. I could voluntarily help people with their computer problems, I guess. Well, HA! That's a laugh. Just ask my mother. Her printer stopped working, and the only way she got any help was, Leo took pity on her. Sorry, Mom. Unless you want to pay me, oh...$200/hour...then MAYBE I'll drag myself over to your house to look at a stupid printer problem. Of course, there's an hour's charge, minimum, even if it only takes me ten minutes to fix it. Why? Because I so don't want to do this anymore! And don't get me started on your complete inability to grasp the concept of a file system.

Where was I?

Reason #9: The Benefit Of The Doubt/Recognition/Respect

If you're an attorney, people assume a lot about you. They assume that you are literate, for instance. (They often assume you are an asshole, but I'm one of the many converts who has learned that that's not always so and I'll be happy to continue showing people the fallacy of that belief if I were to join the profession.) They assume you are smart. They attribute to you all kinds of abilities and aptitudes that might just as well apply to any member of the citizenry. Yet other non-lawyer citizens must prove beyond a shadow of a doubt their own astuteness. I guess this bugs me. I feel like, because I tell people I'm in IT, they don't see me as a possible wordsmith. For once (okay, maybe two or three times?), I would LOVE to see how people react to you when you say the magic words, "I'm an attorney" or "I'm a lawyer" instead of "I'm a computer network engineer".

Seriously...what is that like, saying those words? And which one is your preferred phrase? And why?

Okay, that's all for now. Feel free to poke and prod me into providing a more coherent defense of my desire to switch from IT to law. I'm highly doubting this really answers why. Did it?

Should I duck and cover now? Am I going to get blasted?

With Enough Crumbs, You Get a Cake's Worth of Crazy

Somebody threw me a crumb yesterday, and I cried, people. CRIED! Tears brimming over my bottom lashes, to be gathered into the absorbent fibers of my sleeve. Why?

(...well, partly because I was alone in my kitchen at the time and knew it was safe...?)


Because I was given the slightest bit of validation as to my worthiness by a fellow blogger.


Is this what I've come to? Is this what Good Enough has come to mean?

Settling. You settle. You accept. You lower your standards and your expectations. You take what you can get. You give up hope of better. This is your life now. This is gonna have to be good enough. Accept it. Try to accept it.

And then you cry like a baby when somebody tosses you a crumb of respect, of consideration.

"Maybe I'm better than this?" THAT is my trip wire. And I've been gingerly raising one foot at a time (for fourteen years) and stepping ever so carefully over it and around it, ever cautious, trying hard not to tug on the line, not to trigger the ensuing avalanche of thwarted ambition from firing in my brain and ricocheting off the thousands of nooks and crannies of my gray matter.

So what's the alternative? I have a couple of friends who have insisted on never settling. Now they have less than I do, in terms of what's most important to me. And I feel sorry for them.

I'm in a bad place, people, as you can clearly see.

But I will continue to seek ways to rise above (while struggling mightily with how to implement them without sinking the boat that carries our family, our house, our stability).

OMG...I think I'm about to post, officially, Reason #1 for wanting to go to law school:

Because I want better than what I've got. Because, dammit, I'm better than this.

OMG...does anyone actually come out and SAY IT like that? Is anyone else stupid enough to openly admit their pretentiousness? (insert maniacal laugh here)...on the freakin' INTERNET, no less??!? (Not that I can find...except maybe for No Reins Girl...and she makes it work for her, and I admire the hell out of her for it, too).

Oh, jeebus, mary and joseph, I am a head case.

Thursday, May 21, 2009

Whiskey Tango Foxtrot Wednesday's Thursday, isn't it? Well, anyway...
...I just ordered a copy of my undergrad transcript.
I had no idea, even two hours ago, that I was gonna do that today. Or do that ever again in my life, period.

Hmmmf. Go figure.

Look what else I played around with today:
Amazing what a difference one or two points can make!
And the debt at my local state school is not as high as I've been thinking it'd be.

Hmmmf. Go figure.

There's a major project at work that will kick off soon and there was no way I could keep my paying job AND do a decent job of studying for the June LSAT, so I had to toss the June LSAT goal in the trash can for this year. Today, I dunno, something sorta snapped and suddenly I found myself ordering copies of transcripts and figuring out what kind of minimum score I'd need for the local law school. Not for the June LSAT. Just...for whenever. If ever. Whatever!!!
I'm like an animal who's ready to chew off its paw to free itself.

BTW, I talked to a BigFirm lawyer (Texas for law school, now working there) about a month ago. Here's a picture of us talking:

LagLiv, CM, PBB, dgm...what big teeth you have!

Where's MY margarita?

The pushing that I saw at the picnic? That happened long after the jump rope incident. The pushing happened, I've concluded, because my kid wasn't tuned in to what the group was doing.

They were playing 4-square. I was too far away to hear anything. What I saw was everyone shift position except for Q, who just stood there with her gaze locked on some pebble or bug or who knows what. So everybody shifts positions. Q doesn't move. Doesn't know she's holding everybody up. So the kid (unfortunately the same one that kept pulling on the jump rope) reached over and gave Q's shoulder a little shove. Basically, a kind of, "Hey buddy, wake up and take two steps to the left already, we're trying to play this game here and you're holding everybody up."

I see Q respond to being pushed with the good ol' side-to-side head-shake thing, in that let-me-tell-YOU-a-thing-or-two attitude, because after all, who likes to be awakened with a shove?

But people...what are the kids who are playing with her supposed to do? It has got to be exasperating to deal with an inattentive playmate. And then to be told off because you tried to get her to tune in? Sally walked away with her arms crossed and sat on the edge of the playground, and I don't blame her.

Yes, I obsess about this stuff. But just ignoring it is not the answer. Letting the kids "go work it out" is not the answer. What in the world do THEY know about "working it out"? I think that's kind of dumb, frankly. And irresponsible of the adults.

In short: unsupervised play time? Not such a great idea.

You can't have the adults pooled at one end of the park and have the kids too far away to intervene in a moment's notice. Hyphen-Mama got it right in her comment about the parents who just go sit on a park bench and yap away, essentially leaving their kids unsupervised.

I'm not saying you stop the kids from falling down. I'm not saying you stop the kids from interacting with each other. I'm saying, you have to BE THERE. You have to HEAR what your child said, what the other kid said. You have to SEE what happened and how. And as things turn ugly and poor choices are made, then you intervene as necessary.

But what sucks about this? While you're still on kid patrol, the other parents are kicking back, building rapport, getting friendlier with each other. And you're at the other end of the park, alone with the kids. Like you're the lifeguard on duty.

How many lifeguards on duty actually look like they're having any fun?

Monday, May 18, 2009

If You Cry, You Win

Things I've recently learned:

Conflict Resolution is a misnomer. You don't "resolve" a conflict. Conflicts happen. Things go wrong. People make poor choices. Girl scouts fight over a jump rope.

The point is not that you can "fix" the elements that went into creating a moment of conflicting desires. The point is, once those desires have crashed against each other, what do you do?

So, Cindy brought a jump rope to the picnic. Sally tried to take it away from Cindy. Cindy told Sally to let go. Sally and Cindy ended up pulling on opposite ends of Cindy's jump rope. Cindy told Sally the jump rope might break because Sally wouldn't let go of it. Sally still doesn't let go.

Then Q yelled at Sally to let go, says Sally might break Cindy's jump rope.

Sally and Q end up in a physical altercation.

Q's mommy ends up buying books about Conflict Resolution on Amazon.

Q needs to learn how to cry. The person in tears wins everybody's sympathy. Sally is good at crying. And then pushing Q when nobody's looking. Nobody, except for me. I saw it.

Q was pissed. Q said nobody was helping Cindy, so Q helped her. Q was standing up for a friend in need. Due to tears, Sally was seen as the victim and Q was the bad guy. Q was very angry that she was now the bad guy, when she didn't do anything wrong, she just stood up for a friend.

Mommy is hating girl/youth/group dynamics.

What DID I do, in actuality? I told both girls that they are both nice, sweet girls, that Sally is not mean, and that Q is not mean. I told Q that she is not an adult and is not the one to fix the problem. I told Sally that you don't keep pulling on a jump rope that's not yours. I made them say sorry to each other, which each delivered with an accompanying eye roll.

Friday, May 15, 2009

If this were a tweet, I wouldn't have to title it

This should be a tweet, but screw that.

This is me feeling good about the following things:

........(1) I have gone to the gym twice in two consecutive days.

........(2) I was on the treadmill for over an hour each time.

........(3) I have read a chapter of Team of Rivals each time.

........(4) Lincoln kept a messy office. I feel so validated by that simple fact.

The advantage of using twitter for shtuff like this is, you don't have to think of a post title. Tweets are title-less.

Suddenly, I see the allure.

Parking Lot Epiphanies about Facebook

Facebook is weird. For a LOT of reasons. I am kinda thinking of leaving it, but probably won't. Mostly, I really like being mentioned on the news, when they say the fastest growing demographic of people joining/using Facebook are people over 35. Ha! That's me...talkin' 'bout my generation.... So, apparently I get jazzed about being a follower.

Today's Facebook rant is (mostly) about people who go missing from your Friends list.

I saw a mom at school drop-off today, and it dawned on me that I hadn't noticed any of her FB updates lately. Not that I check FB frequently or consistently. I go in spurts of checking it and spurts of completely forgetting to check it. Anyway, a few months ago, she had posted about tattoos or something. Well, I saw her that morning several months ago, and I said, "Now you've got me thinking about tattoos!" or whatever and she laughed and said something about drooling over this one guy or whatever.

So, I see her today, say hi to her as we pass each other, no biggie. As I walk to my car, it dawns on me that, oh yeah, I haven't noticed any of her FB updates recently. That's weird. She used to post a status update twice a day or more.

I check FB, and yep, sure enough, she has disappeared from my Friends list.

Which means, she must have removed ME from HER friends list. Right? Isn't that how that works?

I wouldn't know. Once I add you, I keep you. I don't know anything about removing people.

[Added Bonus: Here's a Rant-Inside-A-Rant!
I do know about blocking people. I've blocked some people, who were never on my friends list. My block list is something I update consistently. It just keeps growing, person by person. Like, yesterday, I blocked my boss. And that Work Husband guy. Can't believe it took me THIS long to figure out that I should block them. Duh! I wanna block Work Husband's real wife, but it won't find her, for some reason, even though she is on other coworkers' Friends list, big as day, front and center. Whatever. Facebook is stupid. Where's their 800 number, anyway? Stupid Facebook.]

This lady's disappearance from my Friends list brings the total count of Disappearing Friends to 2 for me. As far as I know for sure. There may be others that I'm just not remembering.

I'm trying to take a page from my husband's book and not take it personally. Perhaps she's decided to prune her FB world down to close friends, or long-distance family relations. No biggie. She has the right to tweak FB to her particular needs. The most we ever do anyway is say hi to each other at school. I have mentioned to her in the past that I think it'd be fun to get together for drinks or something. But she's of the Stay-At-Home-Mom variety, with three kids 9 and under, and I'm of the Works-FullTime-Outside-The-Home-Mom variety, with one kid, who's not available to help watch HER kids when she needs a break or to run to the store or whatever. In that regard, friends-wise, I think my variety is at a disadvantage. I just am not as available to put in the time to cultivate the social ties among other moms, especially those moms that I've been passing in the parking lot for the past 4 years. But still, after accumulating 4 years' worth of acquaintanceship, you'd think it'd be possible to have a margarita together at some point.

Which brings the discussion back to Facebook. Facebook allows me the chance to be linked in a little more to the PTO-ers, to the parking lot chatterers who linger next to their cars in their sweats and flip flops and ponytails as I swing my car past them on my out of the parking lot to get to work. I watch them wistfully just for the time it takes me to arc my car into the exit lane, wondering what they're talking about, what meeting they are dissing somebody for, what groups are their kids in that mine isn't that would cause them to have that much to discuss? Or are they just lonely, just needing to connect? And how can I join them? Alone in my car, I focus on my commute and listen to Morning Edition instead of joining them. And think, well, I can kinda join them, via Facebook.

So, I sent the friend invitation, she accepted, and then two or three months later, she disappeared. No margaritas for us, it would seem.

As you can tell, I don't have a high number of friends on my Friends list, so yeah, I notice when someone goes missing....well, I will eventually notice. Give me a month or two and I'll figure it out one morning in the school parking lot.

Thursday, May 7, 2009

Don't Take It Personally

Somebody keeps placing their phone on hold, which blasts new-age, groovy music onto the call for the rest of us to deal with. After three days of this, it was time to identify the one responsible, to avoid future occurrences. My assumption was they had no idea they were causing problems for others.

I thought it was a certain person, and finally said so. The guy immediately yelped, "It's not me!" To which I immediately replied, "Oh, sorry!"

Then the trainer guy says I'm "picking on" that person, who happens to be male. In fact, it is said I am picking on "men", that it is now "the girls against the boys" and that, because another female admitted she also had thought it was that same person (because he seemed to disappear from the call when the music came on), the trainer guy claimed we were ganging up on that guy.

Wha? Where did THAT come from?

How did this become a gender-based discussion?

Am I too insensitive? Or are they just too sensitive?

Meh. I am so sick of IT people. I want to belong to another group of professionals. The kind that doesn't use "irregardless" as a word without flinching.

Wednesday, May 6, 2009

Fortunately, Unfortunately

I just wanna go home, hang out with my kid, before another growth spurt chases this incarnation away and she becomes a new person, again.

By the way, I'm in class all this week.

Fortunately, it's available online and I didn't have to chance catching H1N1 via mass transit travel.

Unfortunately, I have to sit here and listen to my speaker phone ALL.DAY.LONG.

Fortunately, there aren't any (major) technological glitches so far.

Unfortunately, not being able to whisper to the person sitting next to you, "Pssst, what page are we on?!" kinda sucks.

Fortunately, the instructor tells so many personal stories, I don't think it matters WHAT page we're on.

Unfortunately, there's nothing to stop me from playing Word Challenge on Facebook during lecture time, since he reads each slide anyway and I can listen to him just fine.

Fortunately, my Word Challenge skills are getting pretty hawt, baby.

Unfortunately, there's a test at the end of this training, and it's not on Word Challenge.

Tuesday, May 5, 2009

Memo From My Quads

To: gudnuff
RE: Bike ride on Sunday morning

WTH??? You never ask for anything, you sit at the kitchen table blogging, you sit in your car, you sit at your desk...and suddenly, you expect us to power you up hills on rough pavement with a major head wind, for a 25 mile bike ride? Are you serious??!?!!

Be advised you will be hearing more from us about this for the next several days. We may articulate our complaints into the evening hours, even if you are trying to sleep. In fact, we may end up screaming at you, unless you drown us out with Advil.

The next time Q has a sleepover, we highly recommend that you and Leo choose something other than a 25-mile road ride for your child-free activity. Or at least give us a little more heads-up. Go for some smaller warm-up rides a couple times in the week ahead. That way, we won't fail on the last major hills and Leo won't have to push you up the hill, riding beside you with his hand on your back, powering both of you up those hills.

Yes, we know that you had a crush on your own husband by the end of the ride. But really, you basically outsourced us. You'll be hearing from our union rep if that happens again.

Saturday, May 2, 2009

Filler, filler, chicken killer...wha?

I don't have much to say at the moment. Leo is kvetching about my hours on the laptop ("You've been on that thing for what, four hours today? Are we gonna have to limit your laptop time? Hmmmm?"). Q is at a sleepover for the night, and Leo and I are stumbling around trying to think of what to do with ourselves without her. We are a bit askew.

I'm posting this because I don't want the previous post to be sitting at the top of my blog like it's important or something. So basically, this post is just filler. And I'm in a hurry. I have to get off the laptop and onto a bike to go for a ride with my husband before the sun sets to prove to him that "us" time is as important to me as blogging.

Marital contentment hinges on decisions like that.

Friday, May 1, 2009

CBS vs. Smothers Brothers

In a jury trial, if the jury blatantly hands out a wrong verdict, can the judge be the judge of whether the jury was nuts?

Let's say I shoot my husband dead and it's captured on video tape.

For some reason, the jury says I'm not guilty whatsoever.

Can the judge basically judge the jury's verdict as being just plain wrong? Just throw it out?

That's been on my mind ever since I watched Pioneers of Television recently and they were highlighting Variety Shows. Specifically, the half hour I watched was focused on The Smothers Brothers Comedy Hour.

In short, it was the 1970's and The Smothers Brothers kept pushing the envelope on what was "appropriate content", using satire to target racism, the President of the U.S., and the Vitenam War. Wikipedia does a much better job explaining all of the details if you're actually interested.

Well, CBS cancelled the show. The Smothers Brothers sued CBS for breach of contract.

Apparently there was language in the contract (or was there? this is the part that's unclear to me) about the tape getting to CBS by a certain time, and the Smothers Brothers were violating that part of the contract that stipulated that the tape was supposed to be delivered to CBS within a certain period of time. CBS needed time to censor/edit the tape before broadcast time.

So The Smothers Brothers sued. And they won!

I was shocked.

Apparently, so were the CBS lawyers.

Does anybody study this case in law school? Is this a famous case, or does it not rank as worthy of discussion? Just seemed to me to be a blatant abuse of power by the jury. Couldn't the judge say, hey jury, you're full of it, I'm throwing out your verdict 'cause obviously you're not paying attention whatsoever to what a contract is or what the language stipulated.

I thought I heard ('cause I remember being surprised) that just 'cause a jury says you're guilty or not guilty, that utlimately, that is just a recommendation that the judge does not have to base his ruling on. The judge can overrule a jury. Is that bs? Or is that possible?

What Other People Think

Q's solo performance in the school talent show went well. She sang "Tell Me Something I Don't Know" by Selena Gomez (who plays Alex on the Disney Channel's show Wizards of Waverly Place). One person (in my family) questioned the appropriateness of the song. -OK, he didn't question it so much as his eyes popped out and his jaw fell open in shock and disbelief.

Being a proud mama, I thought he was blown away by her talent., not so much.

He thought she was being a hoochimama. An 8-year-old hoochimama.

I wonder how many others (not in my family) shared this concern? (And so what if they did? I dunno...I'm in a weird place today. All paranoid-feeling and whatnot. Meh.)

I struggle to defend the song and Q's choice to sing it. As far as I can tell, it seems pretty basic: stop discouraging me, stop belittling my efforts, start taking me seriously. Well, it seems I'm not the only one with this interpretation. The folks at seem to agree. Which actually made me feel a lot better.

I'm not going to embed the video. I don't like parts of it (okay, I don't like where Selena is singing to the camera through the legs of that other lady...seriously, what is the point of that? who came up with THAT idea?...). Because of those shots (and a few other fleeting poses here and there), the video walks that strange border between straightforward self-expression and the exploitation of the hyper-sexualization of young girls. (pretty fancy-pantsy, eh?) Or maybe it's just me.

What IS the hyper-sexualization of young girls, exactly? I'm trying to sound all edumacated and whatnot (are you buying it?), but that phrase has me perplexed, bemused and bewildered. It brings up images of Jon Benet Ramsey, of 3-year-old Beauty Queens with lipstick and hairspray and heels. THAT I understand as hyper-sexualization of girls. But what about adolescent girls like Selena? What about girls in their tweens? What is considered sexual and what is just basically fashionable?

Well, anyway, what do you guys think? Here are the lyrics.