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By Edward Hurst

Ever been to court? It’s about the only way to settle with an insurance company if their client runs off the road, into the yard, and over you—so I went.

"All rise for the Honorable Judge Snidely Whipsnade," said the Court Marshall, or Deputy Director, or whatever it is they call him. Anyway, I rose; even though I seldom take the term "Honorable" seriously without some sort of proof; I don’t watch court TV, so I’m not very well indoctrinated.

The Judge sat. We sat. The badged and badgered bureaucrat proclaimed court to be in session, which translates loosely to "Let the games begin." Or "Loose the lions; the Christians are getting stale."

First Case: Mother Goose Collections vs. Little Old Lady in a shoe, children et al. Pertinent facts of the case were as follows. Defendant borrowed three dollars for the purchase of one large soup bone and had fallen two months behind on her payments.

The Judge bangs his gavel. (Note: need definition for gavel or don’t say the Judge was banging it for obvious legal reasons). Court finds in favor of plaintiff; shoe-lady was lawyerless or unlawyered (not sure of the technical term).

Foreclosure Sale:

One 1957 house-sized shoe with worn leather laces and a thin sole.

Soles foreclosed on and sold by the court. Hmmm…. perhaps disaster lurks not just around the coroner.

Next Case: Humpty-Dumpty vs. All the King’s men and all the King’s Horses. Pertinent facts of the case: Mr. Dumpty, through no fault of his own, had a great fall. This fall was from a wall owned by the King. Now Mr. Dumpty is in pieces and the King’s men and the King’s horses had failed to put him back together again. Also, there is the whole pain and suffering issue. There were lawyers on both sides of the case making for a difficult decision. However, the ignorant horses were not lawyered-up, and the Judge didn’t buy their defense:

"We can’t fix an egg your honor; we’re just horses with hooves."

Seems ignorance and hooves are no excuse for the law. Verdict: Court finds in favor of the plaintiff, sunny side up, in the amount of ten grand and a new shell. The King’s horses will of course appeal.

Now my case. Too make a silly story short—I won. There is joy in Mudville once again. The Judge ruled that if you drive up in a yard and run over the guy (me) cutting the grass, well then, you have put tire tracks in the homeowner’s lawn—destruction of personal property. You have also deprived said homeowner of the lawn maintenance for which he has paid. Plus, by running over a working stiff, you are endangering the tax base that is the source of the Judge’s income—not good.

Last Case: Wicked Witch vs. Hansel and Gretel for breach of contract. Wicked Witch claims a mutual understanding, by way of verbal contract, that upon fattening of the two children she was entitled to eat them (it seems there is precedent).

Judge finds in favor of Wicked Witch (she had a lawyer) but only awards one dollar in damages as an old out of date law prohibits cannibalism. He does, however, severely reprimand H&G for their deception of the plaintiff. They fattened up on the old lady’s groceries after wasting their own food, scattering bread crumbs willy-nilly through the woods.

© Edward Hurst

* * * * *

Edward Hurst writes a humor columns for Villa Rica Voice in Georgia and is raising a wife and two children. Read more of his work at


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