HAPPY ST. PATRICK'S DAY....As seen on a woman's t-shirt IF YOU PINCH ME, I'LL PUNCH YOU 
Thursday, March 17, 2016, 11:19 PM
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And, I thought to myself (and said to my wife), that would make a great law school test question.

We were downtown with our grandson, Eli (because all 9 year olds who don't have school the next day need to be on a street jam packed with people spilling out of bars wearing tiny emerald-green hats and drinking like fish) and a woman walked by wearing the shirt. I had not known (or, due to age, had forgotten) that if you don't wear green on St. Patrick's Day, you were fair game to be pinched. Our grandson hadn't worn green to school because his mother did not buy him a green shirt (she did buy one for herself, my wife told me) and, by his report, was pinched by every student in his class....and his teacher.

This gave me the opportunity to try to explain irony to Eli, which, I cannot define but think I know it when I see it. Eli's elementary school is about 85 percent African American. "It is ironic", I said "that you got pinched for not wearing green on St. Patrick's Day......but you are the only Irish kid in the class." Which, I am willing to bet my life savings on, he is.

Anyway, in law school (at least the two I went to: the University of Florida and ...briefly, for reasons having to do with American Bar Association requirements...Brooklyn Law School) there was one test....at the end of the semester....and your entire grade was based on it. There were a few courses that required students write papers during the semester.....but, that was a rarity. One test at the end was the rule.

On the day of the test, you would come with a few "blue books" and a few pens. Blue books were thin pamphlets of blank lined paper with a blue cover. When the test began, the professor would hand out a sheet filled with questions and the students would "write blue books" until they ran out of things to write about.

I did well in law school either because I responded appropriately to the questions asked by spitting back what the professor had said on point during the semester, or because I have bad handwriting. I am left handed and I find it tough to write. After a sentence or two, I am in pain. I wrote a lot of blue books for every exam and, I believe, the professors could have thought "This guy is obviously left handed and I can't read a thing he's written but he's written so much that I'm sure he is trying hard....I'll give the poor bastard an "A"...and let some other professor give him the "F" he probably really deserves."

Here is the idea behind the test question I propose: IF YOU PINCH ME, I'LL PUNCH YOU. DISCUSS.

....Pinching someone involves touching and, since the crime (and tort-an actionable civil wrong) of BATTERY is an unconsented to touching, the question becomes whether there is express or implied consent to the pinch. The wearer of the t-shirt can reasonably be considered to be speaking the words written on the shirt. So, is the intent behind the language to make an offer to passers-by: Would you please pinch me so that I can punch you? This would strongly imply consent to the pinch.

Or, is the shirt saying: "Don't pinch me." making the pincher a criminal and possible defendant in the t-shirt wearer's future law suit?

But, back to the contract question: If you pinch the wearer, have you consented to being punched? And, if you've consented to being punched then how much of a punch have you consented to? A bruised arm? Broken teeth? A broken nose?

.And, there is likely a public policy with the idea that you can agree to a punch but not a punch that breaks teeth or a punch in the gut that has the punchee laying on the sidewalk retching.

I could go on forever. In fact, I did when I wrote this and just deleted two huge sentences. I figure people who read this don't want an endless discussion of esoteric stuff........only law professors want that.

And, before leaving this subject, I feel compelled to mention: Since this is Florida, it's almost surprising that nobody I saw on the street, last night, had a shirt that read "PINCH ME AND I'LL SHOOT YOU."

Maybe, next year.

To be continued....... and, NOTE TO SELF: I need to update my car accident piece...possible title: KARMA and LIBERTY MUTUAL.
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