Weekly Comments Archive
Archived Issue
Sunday, June 29, 2003
ISSUE #279
Weekly Comments – “I’d like to get in one of those (movies) with Katie”

June 29, 2003

WESTON, West Va.: The Supreme Court finally made up its mind on law school enrollment and set off a storm in places. That decision didn’t raise even an eyebrow around here. The only concern in these parts is, with thousands wanting into the University of Michigan law school, that they only let in a few hundred like it is now. It don’t matter WHO they let in, the real concern is HOW MANY they let out.

When you live in a country where ten times as many folks want to be lawyers as there is room for in the schools, it just shows you what a catastrophe is around the corner if all of them were to become lawyers. We already have ten times as many as Japan. What would we do with a hundred times more.

Which brings us to telemarketers. There’s about 6 million of these telemarketers that’s been living off the gullibility of the other 250 million, so the government set up a system where we can call in and get our phone removed from their speed dialer. Now, either the government underestimated how unpopular those folks are, or they have no idea how many phones we have in this country. If telemarketers can only call the folks that want to be annoyed there would be so few of them left they could all fit in one phone booth.

That leaves just two groups that can legally pester us by phone, Political Parties and Charities, and the way things are today, the Democrats qualify under both. Frankly, I ain’t sure which is worse: a man wanting to sell you aluminum siding when you live in a brick house; or a solicitor calling for a $100 donation to the “Deputy Sheriffs Benevolence Association” (not to be confused with the Police Captains League, or the Law Officer Widows and Orphans Fund) when you know he will rake three-fourths off the top.

Are you like me? I’ve received hundreds of calls, maybe thousands, and I can’t recall a single one where I would say, “boy, was I lucky the fellow called me with that special offer.” Whether it was Wall Street stocks, storm windows, septic tank cleaning, magazine subscriptions, term life insurance, or a Florida vacation, there wasn’t a one of those products or services I couldn’t have dug up myself if the need arose, and probably for half the price.

With 6 million unemployed talkers on the loose, no telling where they’ll turn up. They may invent a new political party just to keep the money coming in. Call it Telecrats. Their theme: “We still want to reach out and touch someone”.

Or worse, what if they all apply to the Michigan Law school?

But more likely, they’ll trade in their telephone for a computer and deluge us with spam.

We lost some fine prominent people lately. Gregory Peck, Mayor Maynard Jackson, Senator Strom Thurmond at 100, and today, Katharine Hepburn, age 96.

Folks who have heard me speak in the last few years know that I kidded about Strom’s age. “I” claimed we were born in the same year (1879), but you know he was much younger.

Now Katharine Hepburn was a special lady. (see quotes below) She won an Academy Award in 1933, and then three more with the last one for “On Golden Pond” in 1981. Not many folks can lay claim to being the best in their profession, then 48 years later still be the best.

Historic quotes from Will Rogers: (on Katharine Hepburn… and lawyers)

“…my old friend, Fred Stone, is out in front, and I want to do a good show for him. He’s got a great job out here in the movies now playing Katharine Hepburn’s pappy. Boy, I’d like to get in one of those things with Katie. I wouldn’t care where I played. I’d just like to get in there.” Radio broadcast, June 9, 1935

“Fred Stone… is simply great in his first (talking) picture. He is playing with the charming person Miss Hepburn, and the picture is immense and of course she is marvelous as usual, but so is Fred.” Weekly Article #658, August 4, 1935      (note: the movie was “Alice Adams”.)

“The minute you read something and you can’t understand it you can almost be sure that it was drawn up by a lawyer. Then if you give it to another lawyer to read and he don’t know just what it means, why then you can be sure it was drawn up by a lawyer. If it’s in a few words and is plain and understandable only one way, it was written by a non-lawyer.
Every time a lawyer writes something, he is not writing for posterity, he is writing so that endless others of his craft can make a living out of trying to figure out what he said, course perhaps he hadent really said anything, that’s what makes it hard to explain.
But Lord if we go into the things that are useless, why two thirds of the world would have to turn to manual labor. That’s really the only essential thing there is.”
 WA #257, July 28, 1935

Historic note: I believe that Hepburn’s death leaves only one living prominent person that Will referred to by name in his writings or radio broadcasts. That person is Shirley Temple.


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