After tagging a story with “Cassingham’s Second Law”, I got a pile of email asking me to post what my first law was. So here you go.
The first is from the 16 July 2006 issue:
Let’s Take a Pole
Dougie Freeman, owner of the West End Salon & Spa in Provincetown, Mass., had a great idea for a summer promotion: he installed a dancing pole, and any customer who danced at the pole would get $1 off for each minute danced, up to five. No go, said town officials. “Dancing is construed as entertainment,” said the licensing bureau, ordering Freeman to take down the pole and end his “Dancing for Discounts” program. “This is actually a wholesome activity,” Freeman complained, noting there was no stripping involved. “I feel kind of like an artist who’s been nailed to a cross.” (Boston Herald) …Cassingham’s Law: the moment you compare yourself to Christ, you’ve lost the high ground.
The second was in the 6 May 2007 issue:
Do I Know You?
Louisiana State Police pulled over a car driving at about 100 mph even though it had flashing lights and a siren. It wasn’t a police car or an ambulance, but rather New Orleans City Councilwoman Cynthia Hedge-Morrell. “She yelled at me, ‘Do you know who I am?’,” Trooper Anthony Calagna wrote in his report. “‘What the hell are you stopping me for?’ She proceeded to exclaim to me that she had the authority to ‘do what I wanted’ and that she had a badge and was late for a meeting.” Unsure what to do, the officer let her go. (New Orleans Times-Picayune)…Next time just remember Cassingham’s Second Law: Anyone who screams “Do you know who I am?” is a nobody.
No Actual Authority
Hedge-Morrell later apologized for the incident — the second time she had been pulled over for using flashing lights on her city-owned vehicle.
“I deeply regret the incident, and I will be more careful — a more careful driver — in the future,” the councilwoman (and former school principal) promised.
“I would further like to say I take responsibility for my actions, because when I taught children, I always told them to step up and take responsibility when you make a mistake, admit what you did wrong and only use the word ‘I’.” There was no mention of her asking for the Trooper to issue her a citation for her offenses.
She was “rushing to a crucial meeting” with FEMA officials, she said, but the meeting was hardly critical: the topic was the proposed relocation of a school in her district.
She was not cited either time she was pulled over for using her flashing lights, which the State Police said gave her no authority outside of Orleans Parish. But really: why should she even have such “authority” inside the parish?
“Normally, I have a driver,” Hedge-Morrell explained. “This was just an incident, a solitary incident, in which I was late for a meeting.”
When her term expired, Hedge-Morrell ran for at “at-large” seat, but was defeated. Apparently voters agreed: she’s a nobody.