George W. Hopper Law Library
1000 E. University Avenue
Laramie, WY 82071
Phone: (307) 766-2210
Fax: (307) 766-4044
The library has a display case across from the circulation desk that features different themes and displays throughout the year. The current display is about Dr. Seuss. In 2009 we celebrated his 105th birthday, and now the display is back again to celebrate the 110th anniversary of his birth. This web page contains information about Dr. Seuss as well as two examples of legal works imitating his famous style.
Theodor Seuss Geisel, aka Dr. Seuss, was born in 1904 in Springfield, Massachusetts. He wrote and illustrated over 40 children's books, including Green Eggs and Ham, How the Grinch Stole Christmas and Fox in Socks. To read a biography of him, you may visit http://www.catinthehat.org/history.htm or http://www.seussville.com/seussentennial/resources1.html.
Dr. Seuss' literary style has been widely imitated, even by judges. Two examples follow.
United States District Court,
D. New Hampshire.
Charles Jay WOLFF v. NEW HAMPSHIRE DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTIONS, et al.
Civil No. 06-cv-321-PB.
Sept. 18, 2007.
For reasons unexplained, a pro se inmate litigant apparently included a hard-boiled egg as art of his request for a preliminary injunction. U.S. Magistrate James Muirhead ordered the egg destroyed. He did it in the style of Dr. Seuss.
No fan I am
Of the egg at hand.
Just like no ham
On the kosher plan.
This egg will rot
I kid you not.
And stink it can
This egg at hand.
There will be eggs at court
To prove a clog in your aort.
Objections all will be rejected.
From this day forth
This court will ban
hard-boiled eggs of any brand.
And if you should not understand
The meaning of the ban at hand
Then you should contact either Dan,
The Deputy Clerk, or my clerk Jan.
I do no like eggs in the file.
I do not like them in any style.
I will not take them fried or boiled.
I will not take them poached or broiled.
I will not take them soft or scrambled
Despite an argument well-rambled.
No fan I am
Of the egg at hand.
Destroy that egg!
Today I say! Without delay!
SO ORDERED (with apologies to Dr. Seuss).
United States Bankruptcy Court,
In re Hal Ray RIDDLE and Deloris Argelene Riddle, Debtors.
July 17, 2006.
Bankruptcy Judge A. Jay Cristol (S.D. Fla.) was vexed by a bankruptcy statute saying that if an individual debtor in a voluntary chapter 7 or 13 case fails to file certain information within 45 days of filing his petition, the case shall be "automatically dismissed" on the 46th day.
Judge Cristol struggled with the statutory riddle of how a case could be automatically dismissed without court action or even a docket entry.
I do not like dismissal automatic,
It seems to me to be traumatic.
I do not like it in this case,
I do not like it any place.
As a judge I am most keen
to understand, What does it mean?
How can any person know?
what the docket does not show?
What is the clue on the 46th day?
Is the case still here, or gone away?
And if a debtor did not do
what the Code had told him to
and no concerned party knew it,
Still the Code says the debtor blew it.
Well that is what it seems to say:
the debtor's case is then " Oy vay! "
This kind of law is symptomatic
of something very problematic.
For if the Trustee does not know
then which way should the trustee go?
Should the trustee's view prismatic
continue to search the debtor's attic
and collect debtors' assets in his fist
for distribution in a case that stands
After a dismissal automatic
would this not be a bit erratic?
The poor trustee cannot know
the docket does not dismissal show.
What's a poor trustee to do-
except perhaps to say, "Boo hoo!"
And if the case goes on as normal
and debtor gets a discharge formal,
what if a year later some fanatic
claims the case was dismissed automatic?
Was there a case, or wasn't there one?
How do you undo what's been done?
Debtor's property is gone as if by a thief,
and Debtor is stripped but gets no relief.
I do not like dismissal automatic.
On this point I am emphatic!
I do not wish to be dramatic,
but I can not endure this static.
Dismissal automatic is not understood.
Something more in 521 is needed
for dismissal automatic to be heeded.
For all concerned this is not good.
Before this problem gets too old
it would be good if we were told:
What does automatic dismissal mean?
And by what means can it been seen?
Are we only left to guess?
Oh please Congress, fix this mess!
Until it's fixed what should I do?
How can I explain this mess to you?
If the Code required an old fashioned order,
that would create a legal border,
with complying debtors' cases defended
and 521 violators' cases ended,
from the unknown status of dismissal automatic,
to the certainty of a status charismatic.
The dismissal automatic problem would be gone,
and debtors, trustees and courts could move on.
As to this case, how should I proceed?
Review of the record is warranted, indeed.
A very careful record review,
tells this Court what it should do.
Was this case dismissed automatic?
It definitely was NOT and that's emphatic.