February 27, 2009
 
April 2005 - A Marvelous Answer

This contribution from David W. Lindemood of Midland is from a CPS trial before District Judge Dean Rucker (318th District Court) in which Lindemood was the attorney ad litem for the child. The witness, who was the CASA guardian ad litem, is being questioned by Chris McCormack of Midland.

Q. As I understand your testimony about Ms. Ybarra's residence, living situation, you only went into one of the homes that she lived in? Do I have that right?

A. Two.

Q. Two. And on each occasion that you went in there, the residence was clean and orderly, generally - or actually, one was clean and orderly, and one was a little messy, a bachelor pad, as I recall now.

A. That's right.

Q. But no - other than being a little messy, it was not filthy or dirty? Umkempt?

A. It was being swept up and picked up with a shovel.

February 26, 2009
 
May 1985 - What About Your Job?

Q. What do you do for a living?

A. I help my brother.

Q. What does your brother do?

A. Nothing.


***

Q. You said you went to Galveston in 1920, yet the first job you told me about was in 1946. What did you do between 1920 and 1946?

A. Well, I didn't go to work as soon as I got there.

February 25, 2009
 
September 1992 - Did He Really Mean That?

Mark Giles sent me a paragraph from a temporary order in a divorce case - in which "the parties took strong positions as to their parrot, Herme" - with the note that the order (drafted by the opposing counsel, of course) "uses words that could have a double meaning," explaining "some of her client's disgust at the parrot arrangement."

Temporary Custodial Orders for Pet

IT IS ORDERED AND DECREED that as to the parrot, HERME, each party shall have the exclusive possession of HERME for alternating two-week periods, with Respondent having the first two-week period ... Respondent is ordered to deliver the parrot at the end of such period to Petitioner...Petitioner is ordered to deliver the bird to Respondent at her residence by 6 p.m. at the end of his two-week period.

February 24, 2009
 
September 2002 - The "Suicide Question"

From U.S. Magistrate Judge Marcie A. Crone of Houston, this "excerpt from a recent employment discrimination" trial in her court in which the Plaintiff alleged mental anguish as well as other claims

Q. I'm not asking if you attempted suicide.

A. Oh.

Q. I'm asking if you ever said you were going to commit suicide.

A. Oh, yes.

Q. And why did you do that?

A. To get people to talk to me, feel sorry for me, want to be around me, watch me, attention.

Q. Did you ever actually commit suicide — or — I'm sorry.

(Laughter)

The Court: Obviously not.

February 23, 2009
 
May 1994 - Did She Really Say That?

From Suzanne Saenz of Houston (Suzanne is a legal assistant with Ronald W. Ryan), this excerpt from the plaintiff's deposition in a medical malpractice case.

Q. Mr. Williams, are you on any medication today?

A. Yeah. No. Just a little old pain pill; but I'm not - I know what I'm doing ...

Q. What kid of pain pill is that?

A. Let's see. What did I Tell you the name of it was, a while ago?

Def. Attny: I think you said Vicodin.

A. Vicodin. That's what it is, and it doesn't really hurt my memory.

February 20, 2009
 
January 1996 - East Texas Slang

From Raymond W. Cozby, III of Tyler (Cowles & Thompson), this closing argument made by his brother, Andrew J. Cozby, the prosecutor in a criminal trial in Houston:

Mr. Cozby: Members of the jury, I appreciate your patience during this trial. I'm going to be talking quick because my time is limited. If you can follow this East Texas slang I appreciate it because I'm going to be going over some important points.

Number One: What we call in East Texas — if you've ever seen a dog chasing a rabbit, sometimes they will get off on some rabbit's trail. That's a false trail that leads off in a circle. And a dog will get off on a false trail from where the rabbit really is.

Defense Attorney: Your Honor, I object to being called a dog.

Mr. Cozby: Your Honor, I except to that, I was calling him a rabbit.

February 19, 2009
 
May 2001 - Did They Really Say That?

From Roger A. Berger of Houston, who was defending a hospital emergency room group in a malpractice case, this excerpt from the deposition of the administrator of the Group. The question by the plaintiff's counsel was intended to define the different types of emergency room patients - but it elicited a literal answer.

Q. What's the difference between a bed and a chair?

A. One you lay on, one you sit on.

February 18, 2009
 
May 1993 - Did I Really Ask That?

From Judge David Cleveland of Palo Pinto (29th District Court), this testimony from the trial of will contest involving two wills left by Walter Howeth:

Q. When did you last see Walter?

A. At the funeral.

Q. Did he make any comment to you at that time?

A. No, sir.

Judge Cleveland adds: "I have wondered who might have been most relieved that the answer was no: the jury, opposing parties, mortician, or the doctor who signed the death certificate."

February 17, 2009
 
February 2001 - Did They Really Say That?

From David L. Zedler of Sherman, this contribution that occurred during testimony in a recent jury trial.

A. The last time I saw [the child who was the subject of the suit], she was eating a bowl of goldfish.

Mr. Zedler: You mean crackers don't you?

February 13, 2009
 
June 1987 - Did I Really Hear That?

George A. Kelt, Jr., a United State Magistrate in Houston, discovered "this bit of testimony given by the young widow in the case concerning the fracus" in State of Texas v. Charlie Coleman:

Q. Do you remember what day of the week Nov. 29, 1980 was?

A. It was on a Saturday.

Q. Were you or your husband working that day?

A. No, sir.

Q. Sometime during the day of Nov. 29, 1980 did something unusual happen, ma'am?

A. Nothing except my husband got shot.

Q. About what time of the day was that?

A. It was about 2:30 or a quarter to three, something like that.

February 12, 2009
 
March 1987 - At The Harris County Courthouse

Judge Frank Price, asking a defendant whether anyone had promised him an easy sentence in exchange for pleading guilty:

Q. Has anyone led you to believe the governor will pardon you if you plead guilty?

A. Well, I haven't been home judge, but he might have called my mother.

February 11, 2009
 
October 2000 - Did They Really Say That?

From Thomas B. Alleman of Dallas (Winstead, Sechrest & Minick), this entry he found scribbled in the nurse's notes concerning a patient:

3/28/98 - Spoke with wife who said, "He just bit me on the hand, fortunately he didn't have any teeth in." Wife will attempt to feed patient lunch.

February 10, 2009
 
January 2002 - Did They Really Say That?

From Al Ellis of Dallas (Al is of counsel with Howie & Sweeney), this excerpt from “a routine personal injury deposition” in which he received “the final answer as to why the divorce occurred.”

Q. What was the reason for your mom’s first divorce, if you know?

A. My dad.

February 09, 2009
 
January 2002 - Did They Really Ask That?

From Senior State District Judge A. D. Azios of Houston, this incident which took place while he was trying a felony case as a visiting judge in Montgomery County. The questions are by Assistant District Attorney Mike Seiler.

Q. Mrs. …, will you please identify yourself to the jury?

A. My name is Mrs. …; I am the complainant’s mother.

Q. Have you been her mother all her life?

February 06, 2009
 
July 1987 - Did I Really Hear That?

Q. What's his first name?

A. I can't remember.

Q. He's been your brother-in-law for 45 years and you can't remember his first name?

A. No, I tell you. I'm too excited! [Rising from the witness chair and pointing to Borofkin] Nathan, for God's sake, tell them your first name.

February 05, 2009
 
January 2002 - Did They Really Ask That?

From Senior State District Judge A. D. Azios of Houston, this incident which took place while he was trying a felony case as a visiting judge in Montgomery County. The questions are by Assistant District Attorney Mike Seiler.

Q. Mrs. …, will you please identify yourself to the jury?

A. My name is Mrs. …; I am the complainant’s mother.

Q. Have you been her mother all her life?

February 04, 2009
 
June 1989 - Did I Really Say That?

From a telephone hearing conducted by one of the bankruptcy judges in Dallas: the judge has been advised that 12 attorneys are ready for him on the conference call.

The Court: Okay. Thank you. I'm going to give the decision on the motion. I'm going to go through it all and make findings and conclusions of law and give an opinion ... if any of you can't hear me, let me know.

February 03, 2009
 
October 1989 - I'm Glad We Cleared That Up!

From Judge Michael D. Schattman of Fort Worth (348th District Court), this exchange "between attorney Ken Kreis of Bosie, ID and a pretty hostile witness in a case I tried Feb. 15 of the year."

Q. Well, my question wasn't whether he made a lot of trips to the office. My question was, when he did bring anything over for you to sign, any of these administrative or corporate documents, was he personally present most of the times when he hand delivered these things to you?

A. Was Mr. Fugit present when he hand delivered them to me?

Q. Yes, ma'am.

A. Well, I think he would have to be.

Not able to restrain himself, Mike adds this note: "Did tempus fugit or had Fugit already fugited?"

February 02, 2009
 
June 2004 - Classic Typos

Charles W. Hury of McAllen received this last page of an apartment lease guaranty form from a friend whose son is attending Texas A&M.

7. Binding Nature. This Guaranty shall be binding upon and unsure to the benefit of the parties hereto and there respective heirs, legal representatives, successors and assigns.

Charles adds: “Apparently … the parties to the contract, in an unusual flash of honesty, are actually admitting they do not have a clue as to how a guaranty actually works.”


Subscribe to this feed

Google


About the Judge


In Memory of Judge Jerry Buchmeyer, 1933-2009
Real life Texas Courtroom Humor.
From 1980 to 2008, U.S. District Judge Jerry Buchmeyer entertained lawyers far and wide with his "et cetera" column in the Texas Bar Journal. For this page, we've reached into the vault to bring you classic material spanning two decades of courtroom humor, most of which comes straight from actual depostions and trials.


Say What?! Archives
02/01/2003 - 03/01/2003
03/01/2003 - 04/01/2003
04/01/2003 - 05/01/2003
05/01/2003 - 06/01/2003
06/01/2003 - 07/01/2003
07/01/2003 - 08/01/2003
08/01/2003 - 09/01/2003
09/01/2003 - 10/01/2003
10/01/2003 - 11/01/2003
11/01/2003 - 12/01/2003
12/01/2003 - 01/01/2004
01/01/2004 - 02/01/2004
02/01/2004 - 03/01/2004
03/01/2004 - 04/01/2004
04/01/2004 - 05/01/2004
05/01/2004 - 06/01/2004
06/01/2004 - 07/01/2004
07/01/2004 - 08/01/2004
08/01/2004 - 09/01/2004
09/01/2004 - 10/01/2004
10/01/2004 - 11/01/2004
11/01/2004 - 12/01/2004
12/01/2004 - 01/01/2005
01/01/2005 - 02/01/2005
02/01/2005 - 03/01/2005
03/01/2005 - 04/01/2005
04/01/2005 - 05/01/2005
05/01/2005 - 06/01/2005
06/01/2005 - 07/01/2005
07/01/2005 - 08/01/2005
08/01/2005 - 09/01/2005
09/01/2005 - 10/01/2005
10/01/2005 - 11/01/2005
11/01/2005 - 12/01/2005
12/01/2005 - 01/01/2006
01/01/2006 - 02/01/2006
02/01/2006 - 03/01/2006
03/01/2006 - 04/01/2006
04/01/2006 - 05/01/2006
05/01/2006 - 06/01/2006
06/01/2006 - 07/01/2006
07/01/2006 - 08/01/2006
08/01/2006 - 09/01/2006
09/01/2006 - 10/01/2006
10/01/2006 - 11/01/2006
11/01/2006 - 12/01/2006
12/01/2006 - 01/01/2007
01/01/2007 - 02/01/2007
02/01/2007 - 03/01/2007
03/01/2007 - 04/01/2007
04/01/2007 - 05/01/2007
05/01/2007 - 06/01/2007
06/01/2007 - 07/01/2007
07/01/2007 - 08/01/2007
08/01/2007 - 09/01/2007
09/01/2007 - 10/01/2007
10/01/2007 - 11/01/2007
11/01/2007 - 12/01/2007
12/01/2007 - 01/01/2008
01/01/2008 - 02/01/2008
02/01/2008 - 03/01/2008
03/01/2008 - 04/01/2008
04/01/2008 - 05/01/2008
05/01/2008 - 06/01/2008
06/01/2008 - 07/01/2008
07/01/2008 - 08/01/2008
08/01/2008 - 09/01/2008
09/01/2008 - 10/01/2008
10/01/2008 - 11/01/2008
11/01/2008 - 12/01/2008
12/01/2008 - 01/01/2009
01/01/2009 - 02/01/2009
02/01/2009 - 03/01/2009
03/01/2009 - 04/01/2009
04/01/2009 - 05/01/2009
05/01/2009 - 06/01/2009
06/01/2009 - 07/01/2009
07/01/2009 - 08/01/2009
08/01/2009 - 09/01/2009
09/01/2009 - 10/01/2009
10/01/2009 - 11/01/2009
11/01/2009 - 12/01/2009
12/01/2009 - 01/01/2010
01/01/2010 - 02/01/2010

 

Buchmeyer's First Podcast

In June 2006, Judge Buchmeyer was interviewed by the Legal Talk Network.

Click here to listen (Windows Media format)


Classic Articles

Labor Relations: The Wututtut Review Brimelow v. Casson (& A Strike)
June 1983

Jurisdiction: Serving Satan Mayo v. Satan & His Staff
February 1984

Judicial Reasoning: "The Law Is A Ass"
December 1983

'Tis the Season
December 1984

A Fable
March 1985

Classic Article Archive

Links

Order Buchmeyer's new book, Texas Courtroom Humor (pdf format)

Ernie The Attorney Searching for Truth & Justice (in an unjust world)

Inter alia An internet legal research weblog

Lawhaha Andrew McClurg's Legal Humor Headquarters




MyBarPageCalendarContact UsSite Map

Powered by Blogger