Monday, April 16, 2007

Privacy and Mexican Food

Final exams loom. I only have one closed-book exam, a strange imbalance for me. My profs all dropped the last-minute-aside: "I told you guys the exam is open-book, right?" I'm probably the only person who's been furiously memorizing the elements of the privacy torts, but the peace-of-mind throughout the semester would have been nice. Then again, who am I to look a gift horse in the mouth...?

Actually, I am going to look. I'm saying it: I hate open-book exams. I don't learn or retain the information as well because I don't study it as hard. I've been outlining and studying my damn outlines since the start of the semester, so it's an advantage for me when other people have to cram it all at the last minute. I like memorizing. It's one of those rare tasks that rewards time spent. Pure sweat-'o-the-brow, unlike everything else in the law.

Speaking of the privacy torts...intrusion upon seclusion, public disclosure of private facts, false light, and right of publicity. They remind me of a routine on Mexican food by comedian Jim Gaffigan. "It's all the same ingredients," he says.
Describing his time working at a Mexican restaurant:
Customer asks, "What's in the burrito?"
Gaffigan: "Cheese, tortilla, meat or vegetables."
"And what's a quesadilla?"
Gaffigan: "Cheese, tortilla, meat or vegetables."
"How about a tostada?"
Gaffigan: "Cheese, tortilla, meat or vegetables."

These privacy torts are a bit like that: "False statements, injury, malice or intent." Throw defamation in there and you've got a menu.

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