I thought I would end this slight downer of a blog week by posting a funny-blast-from-my-past e-mail. I say blast from the past, because this e-mail came to me in the last century (2002) and even some 10 years later, I find it still incredibly hilarious.
Most of the country has heard of the Darwin Awards given annually to the individual who do the most for mankind by removing themselves from the gene pool.
Now, we have the Stella Awards given to the individuals who win the most frivolous lawsuits ever. The Stella Awards are named in honor of 81 year old Stella Liebeck (surely deceased), the woman who won $2.9 million for spilling a cup of McDonald's coffee on herself. The following are candidates for the award:
1} December 1997: K. W. of Clarmont, Delaware, successfully sued the owner of a nightclub when she fell from the bathroom window to the floor and knocked out her two front teeth. This occurred while Ms. W. was trying to sneak through the window in the ladies room to avoid paying the $3.50 cover charge. She was awarded $12,000 and dental expenses.
2} December 1997: A Philadelphia restaurant was ordered to pay A. C. of Lancaster, Pennsylvania, $113,500 after she slipped on a soft drink and broke her coccyx. The beverage was on the floor because Ms. C threw it at her boyfriend 30 seconds earlier during an argument.
3} October 1999: J. W. of Little Rock, Arkansas was awarded $14,500 and medical expenses after being bitten on the buttocks by his next door neighbor's beagle. The dog was on a chain in its owner's fenced-in yard at the time. Mr. W. was also in the fenced-in yard. The award was less than sought because the jury felt the dog may have been provoked by Mr. W. who, at the time, was repeatedly shooting it with a pellet gun.
4} October 1998: T.D. of Bristol, Pennsylvania was leaving a house he had just finished robbing by way of the garage. He was not able get the garage door to go up, because the automatic door opener was malfunctioning. He couldn't reenter the house because the door connected the house and garage locked when he pulled it shut. The family was on vacation. Mr. D. found himself locked in the garage for eight days. He subsisted on a case of Pepsi he found in the garage and a large bag of dry dog food. Mr. D sued the homeowner's insurance claiming the situation cause him undue mental anguish. The jury agreed to the tune of one half million dollars.
5} June 1998: 19 year old C.T. of Los Angeles won $74,000 and medical expenses when his neighbor ran over his hand with a Honda Accord. Mr. T apparently didn't notice that there was someone at the wheel of the car when he was trying to steal his neighbor's hubcaps.
6} January 2000: K.R. of Austin, Texas, was awarded $780,000 by a jury of her peers after breaking her ankle, tripping over a toddler who was running amok inside a furniture store. The owners were understandably surprise at the verdict, considering that the misbehaving little fellow was Ms. R's son.