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f/k/a archives . . . real opinions & real haiku

April 6, 2005

dagosan’s scrapbook — April 2005

Filed under: pre-06-2006 — David Giacalone @ 10:42 pm

– below are haiku and senryu written by “dagosan”, this weblog’s Editor, David A. Giacalone. most have been on the Home Page, some are outtakes and rewrites. each is a work in progress. i hope they show improvement over time and encourage others to try writing haiku –

 – click here for dagosan’s archive





the nine-year-old’s

best shoes

the puddle-covered sidewalk


                      [April 30, 2005]



new kids moving in —

do I dare










storm clouds gather — 

city hall tower

just stands there









the neighbor’s new dress     

   that moment you forget

                  you’re twice her age





[April 29, 2005]








the kids suddenly

like macaroons



[April 29, 2005]





twin beds arrive

– – –

– – –

she says it’s ’cause I snore





gray and rainy —

the passers-by




[April 27, 2005]


one sparrow

along the river —

squinting, there’s no city


                          [April 26, 2005]








spring sun behind clouds —

too much makeup

on her still-lovely face


                           [April 25, 2005]




Earth Day —

recycled bottles

in a three-car garage                  

                                     [April 24, 2005]






rainy Saturday —

the chirping robin

needs a date, too

                              [April 22, 2005]









first-date stroll

April tulips

still closed tight

                                                       [April 22, 2005]








haven’t seen her

in 30 years —

sending one more chaste email

                                                                                 [April 21, 2005]





my long-lived elders —

a couple extra decades

of dementia 

                                                       [April 20, 2005]








cursing last year’s

unraked leaves —

the dogwood blossoms

                                                       [April 19, 2005]









perfect line-drive

over second base —

coach says I swang late


                      [April 18, 2005]










the young man’s

erotic dream —

the old man’s bladder wakes him

                                                                    [April 18, 2005]






just another

Sunday stroll — until

the flower box pansies

                           [April 17, 2005]



spring’s first mosquito

lands on my cheek —

the neighbor waves back









admissions week —

two fat envelopes

and two skinny ones


                              [April 16, 2005]











squinting to see him —

another generation

sent to right field


                              [April 15, 2005]















snowman’s hat

in the muddy field —

the hatless scarecrow


                              [April 14, 2005]


















first good

porch-settin’ day —

her outside voice at the door



[April 13, 2005]













for the alarm to buzz —

sunbeams warm my ear

                [April 12, 2005]










the first

jetski of spring —

seagulls scatter


                [April 10, 2005]













to the passing teens

— can’t shoo the pigeons                


                                     [April 9, 2005]








home from the wake —

a robin perched

on the newly-toppled tree


                               [April 8, 2005]













mom’s arthritis

acting up —

I take two Advil


                    [April 7, 2005]











upstairs tenant

clears his throat

i turn on the exhaust fan


                    [April 6, 2005]












now it’s Spring:


melting on the dashboard


                    [April 5, 2005]









the river’s back

within its banks —

her look of disappointment


                    [April 4, 2005]










such thick roots —

the flooding river

topples the giant oak


                         [April 3, 2005]













April rain —


the river’s coming to me


                                [April 2, 2005]







April 1 —

no one here

to make a fool of me









first scull of the year

arms ache

just waving












last day of March

her pink slip

no prank

             [April 1, 2005]


 – click here for dagosan’s archive

Congressional Veto over Supreme Court Decisions?

Filed under: pre-06-2006 — David Giacalone @ 9:09 pm

Following a pointer from a relative concerning the Catholic position on Living Wills,

I found myself today at the Priests for Life website.  You can find a discussion there

on the moral dangers of living wills [scroll to #15], and even an audio homily on the

subject (with which I disagree) by Fr. Frank Pavone, National Director of Priests for

Life, who preached at the recent funeral services for Terri Schiavo. 


However, what I thought my readers might find more interesting — even if not more

important — is the Online Poll offered on the PfL home page (scroll down).  The

current question is

Should the United States Congress exercise veto power over   courthouse1

Supreme Court decisions?

I’ll be curious to see the results of this poll.  Prior poll questions and results — with lopsided

numbers that would be expected from fundamentalist-conservative Catholics and their allies 

— suggest that a particular response was anticipated from the website’s editor. For example:.

Q: Do you think it’s time to start blockading abortion clinics again?

Results: Yes: 1814 No: 821


Q: Do you agree that the Democratic Party “can no longer be 

morally supported by Christians”?

Results: Yes: 13,005  No: 792

A little bit of thought suggests that the congressional veto of Supreme Court decisions has

no such obvious answer for pro-lifers or pro-choicers, or any other political animal (of the

partisan or philosophical sort).   How would Fr. Pavone like a potential congressional veto

over a decision overturning Roe v. Wade?  How would limited government foes — or

opponents — feel about such veto power over interpretations of the Bill of Rights?


courthouseN I hope other webloggers with better credentials than I on the topic — like Professors 

AlthouseBainbridge, and Grace, or Mike “Fed84” Cernovich, and the whole Volokh gang — could

help Fr. Pavone and his audience take thoughtful positions on the question. 


update: holy cow: of bull and manure (Sept. 19, 2005)



if someone asks
answer: it’s a dewdrop


translated by David G. Lanoue

before we charge our batteries

Filed under: pre-06-2006 — David Giacalone @ 3:20 pm

– there’s been too much prolix punditry around here lately, so

i owe you more haiku than usual –






a bit of birdsong

before we start

our engines











since you moved

just a road

I don’t go down

John Stevenson






20,000 feet

    sunrise so close

       I can touch the light














sculpture park
between Romeo & Juliet
a robin’s nest

“20,000 feet” from  pink light, sleeping (1998)

“sculpture park” – HaikuCanada Newsletter 







6 innings

8 beers

  o  b  e  e  d

b   b  l  h  a











saturday rain                             

my daughter fingerpaints                           

her step father’s face


“6 innings” from games (pawEprint 78) 





upstairs tenant

clears his throat

i turn on the exhaust fan


                    [April 6, 2005]



 sleuthSm  I agree with Orin Kerr that the new easy availability of satellite mapping 

of particular locations — as offered now at Google Maps — will will become quite

troubling from the privacy perspective  “if and when the resolution of the maps improves.”



tiny check HALT gives quick reviews of the newest tax-preparation software here.

Follow-up: HALT has put together a Living Wills Clearinghouse, now found

on its Home Page, saying “Due to the explosion of interest in living wills

as a result of the Terri Schivao crisis, HALT is offering free living wills for

consumers in every state. Filled out properly, a living will is a powerful tool

to ensure that you receive only the care you want if you become unable to

express your wishes.”   In addition to general information about Living Wills,

there is a brochure Durable Power of Attorney: Do You Need One?  [See our

prior post “you don’t have to pay for a living will.”]

LexThink about higher fees (er, value billing)

Filed under: lawyer news or ethics — David Giacalone @ 1:26 pm

Reading through facilitator Sherry Fowler’s list of suggested resolutions from
LexThink participants, I noticed that quite a few of them mention the concept
of “value billing.” (via MyShingle)  For example, one says to “teach lawyers
difference between value, price, and cost” and another says “read Ron Baker’s
writings on value billing ”
I am all for modernizing the law firm and the lawyer-client relationship — so long  complaint billF
as it is a tool for better serving the client’s interests, rather than one that merely uses
modern selling techniques and technology to articificially increase lawyer fees and
profits and to stave off the democratizing effects in the legal services marketplace
of the digital revolution.

I continue to believe that the “value billing” mantra and the constant drum beat
against hourly billing can be contrary to client intersts, if they are not accompanied
by a renewed commitment by each lawyer to the fiduciary and professional obligations
owed to each client.  See Value Billing or Venal Bilking? and chronomentrophobia.
Shark Tiny Gray LexThink participants might want to consider the following discussion from my
piece on value billing, before becoming advocates of Ron Baker’s theory of value pricing
by professionals:
Update: (April 11, 2004):  Soon (I hope), Matt Homann will give us his explanation
of value billing, to help assuage my concern over the use of branding and value
pricing to achieve “premium pricing” of lawyer fees.  Matt suggested last month
that I read The Firm of the Future: A Guide for Accountants, Lawyers, and Other Professional Services by Paul Dunn & Ronald J. Baker.  Matt said that the book “sets out their vision of value pricing and serves as much of the model for my new firm.”   I couldn’t find the
book at my local Library (and won’t pay $40+ to buy one).  However, I did use the “Search in the Book” feature to check out “value pricing” or “value billing”
and ethics.  The results were not the least bit calming for me on whether value billing
will result in reasonable fees or merely produce “premium fees”.
  1. For example (at p. 217) The book asserts there is no ethical contradiction from using value billing.  But, it quotes from an NYSBA report, which says an agreed upon price is fair “subject to market realities and the attorney’s professional obligations”.  Of course, the whole issue is what the lawyer’s obligations are when reaching the fee agreement [disclosure of relevant facts, offering a fee that is reasonable, taking into account the client’s sophistication, etc.].
  2. The book also says value pricing is ethically okay because businesses do it
    all the time — using airlines charging different fliers different prices for the
    same seat, movie theatres’ price for popcorn, and premium ice cream makers,
    as examples.  My reaction:  None of those sellers have fiducial duties; none
    promises to put the customers’ interests first (except when that will incease profits); none sell a product whose qualities the buyer is unable to judge.  As I wrote back to Matt, “If movie theater popcorn is the touchstone for the ethics of value billing, I rest my case.”
Note:  On April 23, 2004, Matt Homann had a post titled “Primer on Value Billing,” in
which he calls Ron Baker “an absolutely amazing visionary.”  [Reminds me of the name
partner at my first law firm, who advised me that the word “amazing” could be used in
place of any expletive.]  In the post, Matt points to a 2001 Baker piece, and says “I guarantee
that you it will give you incredible insights into pricing your services.”  In the piece,
Burying the Billable Hour,” Baker highlights the following pricing strategy from Harry
Beckwith as central to his theory of value billing:
“Like money, price talks. It changes perceptions.
Price changes the actual experience of using the service:
A high price actually improves the experience. Watch
what your price says. Push price higher. Higher prices
don’t just talk, they tempt.”
Let’s think long and hard before that principle becomes the core of lawyer pricing
in the new millennium.
afterthoughts: See , e.g., “Value Billing and Lawyer Ethics“(Jan. 28, 2004); “broadening the billable hours debate” (Aug. 18, 2007)

the bill collector
with shoes on steps inside
to the hearth

in the depths of the lake
billowing clouds

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