Friday Links

“Chaos in the Court!” proclaims the cover of Marvel Team-Up #51, published way, way back in 1976. In that issue, Spider-Man and Iron Man join forces to defeat a villain in a courtroom. Look closely in the top right hand corner and you’ll see the judge at his bench desperately attempting to dodge the bad guy. We can only assume that the people depicted fleeing at the bottom of the cover are lawyers or other courtroom personnel. We may need to investigate how this one turned out, but we suspect superhero battles violate the court’s local rules. If you’re curious, you can find a summary of this issue here.

You need to read about this odd lawsuit involving Eddie Murphy.

An interesting – but likely doomed – argument: “Attorneys for two people convicted in a federal mortgage fraud case are asking for a new trial, in part because they say their clients’ rights were violated when prospective jurors who did not meet the dress code at the federal courthouse in Orlando were turned away by security.” For more, please see this news article by Lyda Longa of The Daytona Beach News-Journal.

If you’re feeling some nostalgia for New Coke, you might be in luck. Click here for a trip down memory lane. (Or, if you’re a young associate, and you’ve never heard of New Coke, click that link, as well.).

Don’t forget! We here at Abnormal Use are at the North Carolina Bar Association Annual Meeting in Wilmington, North Carolina today! If you see us, say hi!

Friday Links


Oh, my. It’s Friday the 13th, which means that we must pause in apprehension to consider the implications of such a frightful day. It also gives us an opportunity to talk about scary movies. Above, you’ll find the cover of Friday The 13th: Fearbook, published not so long ago in 2006 by Avatar Press. Trust us when we say that it one of the few Friday The 13th comic book covers we felt comfortable sharing with you, our dear readers. The rest, of course, were NSFW. On a similar occasion, back in 2013, we wrote:

It is Friday the 13th. Yikes. We thought about using the cover of one of the many Friday The 13th comic book adaptations in today’s post, but they were all too violent.

Very true. Earlier that year, we exercised a similar level of restraint:

By the way, don’t forget that today is Friday the 13th. Be careful out there, folks. (Please note that we resisted the urge to post the cover of a Friday The 13th comic book adaptation.).

In 2012, we posted a relatively tame Superboy cover but warned:

Today is Friday the 13th.  Beware.

All that said, on Friday, July 13, 2012, we dedicated our Friday Links post to the Friday The 13th film series, so please see here for that.

On an unrelated note, Plaintiff’s lawyers are now using Google Glass to create point of view “day in the life” videos for their clients to play before the jury. For more on that development, see here.

The TortsProf Blog notes that New York University law professor Cathy Sharkey has posted two new pieces to SSRN, including Tort-Agency Partnerships in an Age of Preemption and Agency Coordination in Consumer Protection. For more on that, please see here. We mention this, of course, because way, way back in March of 2011, we interviewed Professor Sharkey, and you can revisit that piece here.

Big news! Yoko Ono has settled a lawsuit!

Kevin Underhill’s funny book, The Emergency Sasquatch Ordinance, is now available as an e-book. See here for our interview with Kevin about this project.

Friday Links


What is happening on the cover of Public Defender in Action #8, published way, way back in 1956? It seems that Richard Manning, the title character, has been disturbed by something happening just outside of his office window. We see a police officer apparently pursuing another gentleman – who may or may not be Manning’s client.  Are we supposed to guess? What gives? (Note: We’ve previously mentioned the Public Defender in Action series here and here).

If you haven’t already, you may want to read this piece on the U.S. Supreme Court’s previously unknown practice of editing opinions after their release.

Who is going to the North Carolina Bar Association annual convention next week in Wilmington? Our editor Jim Dedman will be there, so say hi if you see him.

Our favorite headline this week: “Underground booze slushies not as innocent as they look.” That falls under food regulation, right?

Baylor University is threatening suit against the Baylor Alumni Association. To learn more about that dispute (and to read Ken Starr’s letter to the alumni group), see here.

Friday Links


Above, you’ll find the cover of Superman & Savage Dragon: Chicago #1, published not so long ago in 2002. The plot, according to Comicvine, is as follows: “When Superman’s greatest foes leave their native Metropolis and join Chicago’s notorious criminal organization, the Vicious Circle, the call is put out for the Man of Steel to save the day.” (We hope that Supes had the opportunity to shop at Reckless Records while he was in the Windy City.). Whatever the case, we bring this cover to your attention today because our editor is in Chicago today attending the DRI Product Liability Committee Fly-In planning meeting. If you happen to find yourself at the same meeting today, please be sure to say hello!

Apropos of nothing, here is a link to a rejection letter that U2′s Bono received from a record label in May of 1979.

If you handle minor settlements in the State of South Carolina, you may want to review this new order from the South Carolina Supreme Court.

FYI: GWB attorney Luanne Runge, Immediate Past Chair of the Greenville Chamber of Commerce, has been named a 2014 South Carolina Super Lawyer in the area of Business Litigation.  For more information, please see here.

Don’t forget! You can follow Abnormal Use on Twitter here and on Facebook here! Drop us a line!

Friday Links


Above, you’ll find the cover of Mr. District Attorney #64, published many, many years ago, and to be honest we can’t quite figure out what’s going on. Surely, whatever is happening, the title character has lost his prosecutorial immunity, right?

Okay, so this Swedish warning label for matches is pretty, uh, specific.

Perhaps we could purchase this piece of real estate that is now for sale and use it for our unofficial Abnormal Use headquarters? Any thoughts, dear readers?

Our editor, Jim Dedman, got a fine shout-out in a Steinbeckian post over at the Drug and Device Law blog. The post in question, “Travels with Bexis,” can be found here.

Tara E. Nauful and Dawn M. Hardesty offer this article entitled Dischargeability of Student Loan Debt in Bankruptcy. Wouldn’t that be nice?

You really should pause and read this opinion in Morland-Jones v. Taerk from a Canadian court. The judge apparently had little patient for the affluent litigants and their dispute as neighbors. Here’s an excerpt: “There is no claim for pooping and scooping into the neighbour’s garbage can, and there is no claim for letting Rover water the neighbour’s hedge. Likewise, there is no claim for looking at the neighbour’s pretty house, parking a car legally but with malintent, engaging in faux photography on a public street, raising objections at a municipal hearing, walking on the sidewalk with dictaphone in hand, or just plain thinking badly of a person who lives nearby. There is no serious issue to be tried in this action.” Of course, Kevin Underhill of the always funny Lowering The Bar humor blog on the case, so you must read his commentary here, as well.

Everyone, please have a safe holiday weekend!

Friday Links


You know, we just realized that we rarely, if ever, talk about the Fantastic Four on Friday Links. Let’s remedy that today. Above, you’ll find the cover of “The Trial of Galactus,” a collection of Fantastic Four comics involving, well, the trial of Galactus, the cosmic being who literally devours worlds. We suspect that was a doozy of a case (although we wonder what court might have jurisdiction to try Galactus). Here’s what Comicvine has to say about that story:

This is a trade paperback book that collects the stories of Galactus within the pages of the Fantastic Four from issues #242-#262. It features the story of the trial of Reed Richards among the sentient races of the known universe. Reed Richards is on trial for “saving” Galactus. By saving him, many worlds and the trillions upon trillions of life they supported were devoured.

In the course of the trial individuals come forth to testify their stories which reveal the birth and life and purpose of Galactus in the universe…

We’ll have to track that one down, we suppose, if only to learn about the “purpose” of Galactus (although it doesn’t sound like Galactus himself was the defendant). Oh, and see this March 2010 post of ours for our last big mention of the Fantastic Four.

So, you dig F. Scott Fitzgerald? Well, then, you need to do two things. First, check out this list of 22 books he recommend in a list from 1936. Then, go revisit our May 2013 list of Seven Court Opinions That Cite The Great Gatsby. That should take care of your Friday morning for you. Oh, and apologies for sounding like Buzzfeed for a moment or two there. We’ll do better in the future. We promise.

“Even I’m bored with the subject, and this type of case fits in my wheelhouse, and is especially important to anyone that tries cases in front of juries,” writes Eric Turkewitz of the New York Personal Injury Law Blog of the infamous Stella Liebeck McDonald’s Hot Coffee case. As you probably know, we here at Abnormal Use talk about that case a good bit. To read his full post on that subject, please see here.

Okay, so wreck cases are about to get more interesting. From Popular Science: “Volvo Puts Autonomous Cars In The Hands Of Consumers.” From Discover Magazine: “The Flying Car That Could Expedite Your Morning Commute.” From Mashable: “See How Google’s Self-Driving Car Navigates City Streets.” We’re really going to need to alter our discovery strategies for driverless and/or flying cars.

Asks @GideonsTrumpet: “At what point in your life do you have to be to sue Subway over the fact that their foot-long sandwiches are actually only 11 inches long?” A good question, that.

Friday Links


Okay, here’s an issue we need to find and read. Above, you’ll find the cover of Action Comics #581, published way, way back in 1986 (back in the days when we here at Abnormal Use were regularly visiting comic book shops). The cover proclaims: “In this issue you will meet the Man of Steel’s Lawyer!” Who could it be? How do you suppose he was retained? When Superman appears in your office as a potential client, do you require a retainer? Are you obligated to ask his secret identity for the purposes of the conflicts check? Where do you send your bills? To the Hall of Justice? Or do you handle cases for Superman pro bono (suspecting that it will probably pay off later if he owes you one)?

Did you know that there is a rock band called The Plaintiffs? Back in 2011, we interviewed  Brian Dale Allen Strouse, the leader of the Philadelphia rock group, The Lawsuits. (You can find that interview here). We think these two bands should tour together.

Don’t forget! If you’re in Charlotte, North Carolina on Thursday, May 22, you can attend the “Food Truck Law” CLE planned by our editor, Jim Dedman. For more information on that (including instructions on how to register for the event, please see here.). Best part: The event will be held at a local brewery!

By the way, did you hear that GWB partner John T. Lay has been selected for inclusion in the South Carolina Super Lawyers Top 25 for 2014?  For more on that, see here.

Friday Links


As you may have heard, Al Feldstein, the long time editor of Mad Magazine, has died. He was 88 at the time of his death, but during his life, he edited the humor rag during its heyday from 1955 to 1984. Since we’re big Springsteen fans, we direct your attention to the cover above, that of Mad Magazine #270, which is a parody of the Live/1975–85 box set. That issue was published in 1987, just a few years after Feldstein retired from the publication.


Back in April 2011, in an edition of Friday Links, we here at Abnormal Use featured Mad Magazine #274 (cover pictured above) as our legally themed comic book cover of the week. Yes, as you can see, at the time of that issue’s publication (1987, again), the magazine was parodying “L.A. Law,” the then-popular legal drama. Of that cover, we said:

We recently realized that most newly minted lawyers are now too young to remember watching “L.A. Law” when it originally aired back in the late 1980s and early 1990s. This is sad news. How is it that a practicing lawyer can be unaware of the fictional exploits of the McKenzie Brackman firm? Was it that long ago in the past when the show left the airwaves in 1994? Was it that many years ago that the Rosalind Shays character perished by falling down an elevator shaft? So, what can we do but commemorate this program by sharing with you the cover of Mad Magazine #274, published way back in 1987? (An aside: One of the writer contributors of this blog actually bought this issue off the newsstand back in ’87, but we’re not going to tell you which one of us it was so as to protect the innocent.).

Indeed, we here at Abnormal Use became familiar with Mad Magazine back in the mid-1980′s, well after it was an institution. It was certainly superior to the other fad of the time: Garbage Pail Kids. By the 1990′s, though, we had left comic books and Mad Magazine behind, so we missed the legally themed cover to issued #322, published way, way back December 1994 and pictured below:


Mad Magazine on the O.J. Simpson trial? We might have to make our way to eBay to find a copy of that one (if only to learn why Marcia Clark appears to be introducing a photograph of famed magazine mascot Alfred E. Neuman as an exhibit to the proceedings). Yes, yes, we realize that if offering this tribute to Mr. Feldstein that we only displayed Mad Magazine covers from the late 1980′s and early 1990′s (after his tenure). So, today, in honor of Mr. Feldstein, head on over to Mad Magazine‘s official website, or if you’d like to stroll down memory lane, to Comicvine, where you can access images of all of Mad Magazine‘s covers all the way back to the 1950′s.

Friday Links


“I’m about to commit my first crime – and you, Batman, are about to be the victim!” exclaims Superman on the cover of World’s Finest #180, published way, way back in 1968. We believe him! However, the title of the story appears to be “Superman’s Perfect Crime,” and we must dispute that characterization. If Superman is attempting to commit the perfect crime, then perhaps he should refrain from literally shouting his confession from the rooftop in broad daylight.

If you like tweets about medical malpractice trials, this tweet might be the one for you.

Did you see this article in The Charlotte Observer this week about the proposed new regulations for food trucks? If not, click here for the story by Caroline McMillan Portillo. Speaking of food trucks, our editor, Jim Dedman, has planned a CLE on Food Truck Law in conjunction with the Mecklenburg County Bar Association. Best part: The CLE – which will start at 4:00 p.m. on Thursday, May 22, will be at the Unknown Brewery in near Charlotte’s South End. For more information on the CLE, click here.

Speaking of our editor, he’s now on Twitter. You can follow him here at @JimDedman.

Friday Links


Above you’ll find the cover of the House of Secrets #43, published way, way back in 1961. As you can see, the two defendants find themselves in the “Court of Creatures” facing the death penalty. Yikes. We do not believe the Defendants will fare well in this forum.

Writing at The Mac Lawyer, Ben Stevens asks “What if You Could Charge an iPhone in 30 Seconds?” That would be something, wouldn’t it?


Tomorrow is the fourth anniversary of Professor Mark Osler’s Last Lecture at Baylor Law School (more about which in the image above). For even more on that occasion, see Professor Osler’s 2010 blog post  here. Now, of course, Professor Osler teaches at the University of St. Thomas Law School in Minnesota. Back in 2000, he joined the faculty of Baylor Law, where he stayed until 2010. By the way, you can read Professor Osler’s blog, Osler’s Razor, here, and you can follow him on Twitter here.

Don’t forget! You can follow Abnormal Use on Twitter here and on Facebook here! Drop us a line!