Watch Me Take The Bar
Watch Me Take The Bar
This blog, originally started as a chronicle of my taking the bar, is now a look into the mind of an attorney in solo practice in Port Clinton, Ohio.
Sunday, July 17, 2005

With Apologies to Woody Guthrie, JibJab, and Professor Pizzimenti

As you all doubtless know, Woody Guthrie wrote "This Land."

Jib Jab borrowed it for a hilarious send-up of last year's Presidential election. (If you haven't seen it, for the love of God, click on the link!)

I always think of Professor Pizzimenti's (contracts, first year) discussing someone who was suing over a land dispute...

This land is my land,
This land's not your land
Get off of my land
Before I shoot you

In any case, I've been having a dickens of a time remembering the duty owed in torts by landowners. It's tricky. (It's tough. It's...the Multistate. OK, I'm sounding like Feinberg again, just shoot me.)

Anyrod, insofar as I had some success learning fee simple defeasible when I corrupted Ashlee Simpson into "Pieces of Fee," I thought this song just naturally lent itself to being a study aid. And I think it's already helping.

(Note, I'm aware that some of the pacing isn't exactly right and the rhyme scheme is, in places, murky at best. I'm studying for the bar, not to become a lyricist. What do you want from me?

Also, for the throngs of you who have written in with concerns about my mental health after this post, I'm not sure this is going to make you feel any better. In any case, I'm going to create another post in a moment and hopefully assuage some of your fears about my mental health.)

This land is my land,
This land’s not your land
You’re undiscovered
And your tres-passing

I owe no duty
And so it’s true that you are screwed
You can just go and climb a tree.

If you’re discovered
Or anticipated
I have to warn you
If it’s non-obvious

And highly dangerous
Than I must warn and make it safe
For artificial conditions, I owe you this duty

And if it’s natural,
I owe you nothing
But if operations are active,
My care must be reasonable.

That goes for everyone,
Except an undiscovered “T.”
And a child unless he’s anticipated or discovery’ed.

If you’re an infant
And the risk’s foreseeable
If it outweighs the expense,
I have to fix it.

For aritifical conditions,
Well that is the rule you know
Otherwise, you’ll have recovery.

If you’re a licensee then,
I have to warn you
or make safe known artificial conditions
If they’re nonobvious

And simply dangerous,
And you are there as a social guest
You will then be a licensee.

The same goes for conditions
Which are quite natural
And remember “licensee” is
Quite counterfactual

An invitee is
Someone with whom you’re doing biz
A friend is just a licensee.

If invitee, then
I must make inspections
To discover nonobvious
And dangerous conditions

Artificial or natural
And I must warn or make them safe
Only if you’re an invitee

Get awesome blog templates like this one from

Listed on BlogShares