Tag Archives: Scattered Thoughts

Life with a Law Student: Doctrine of Proportionality

In law, there is the “Doctrine of Proportionality” – where any measure that is adopted should not have any greater effect than what is necessary to achieve its intended objective.

Not so in real life.

Our coexistence with the birds* has reached a “containment” (to use a Cold War term) phase. We are arming ourselves with the “Super Soaker Tornado Strike”  (under the Lethal Weapons Section in Toys R Us) to scare them off.

Note*: The original 2 baby pigeons have grown up and flew off, but the pigeons are refusing to leave. They are coming back with more twigs to build a bigger, better nest. Just this week, we had to clear off a dead decomposing baby bird in its nest. 



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Life with a Law Student: Hart vs Fuller






Mr. Cinical: Arggh, I can’t seem to understand the Hart-Fuller debate*, and legal theory exam is next week.

Me: Haha, so you need to get Har(d)(t) to understand Fuller? Or understanding Fuller makes you get Har(d)(t)?

Mr. Cinical: You are such a sicko.

Me: Actually, I thought it was funny. 🙂

*Hart versus Fuller is a debate on the nexus between law and morality. Hart takes a positivist view arguing that morality and law are separate, while Fuller’s response to Hart is that morality is the source which gives law its binding power. There’s even an wiki entry on this.

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Life with a Law Student: Grievous Hurt

The rustling of newspapers and the pitter-patter of feet woke me up this morning. It was way before my alarm was set to go off.

Mr. Cinical had been attempting (for the last 10 minutes) to “set a cockroach free” (in his words). This involved him trying to flip the scurrying cockroach with a piece of paper so that it landed on its back.

Irritated at his futile attempts (and disturbance of my usual sleep patterns), I grabbed some tissues, caught the cockroach by surprise and threw it out of the house.

Mr Cinical: “You could be charged for causing grievous hurt to the cockroach. Or even murder if you had intended to kill it.”

Me: “I just don’t want the cockroach in the house.”

Mr. Cinical: “You should defend yourself by saying that the cockroach was committing criminal trespass. You have the right of defense of private property. My criminal law exam is next week, so I’m studying.”

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Life with a Law Student: Strict Liability

Phone call from Mr. Cinical.

Mr. Cinical: “Hey, I have put all your clothes into the washing machine. Is there any special instructions before I switch the machine on?”

Me: “Urmmm, the clothes need to go into a laundry bag first, and I use the delicate wash mode.”

Mr. Cinical: “Sounds complicated.”

Me: “It’s alright. I can do the laundry when I get home.”


Facing pile of unwashed laundry in washing machine and spying my silk dresses inside.

Me: “I really appreciate you attempting to help me with my laundry, but you do know that I’m gonna scream if you actually switch that machine on with the silk dresses inside right?

And what made you call to check in the first place?”

Mr. Cinical: “I had good intentions and then I read about the concept of strict liability. The responsibility for damages even if the person responsible did not intend for it to happen. I figured it’s gonna apply.”

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Life with a Law Student: On Duress

Me: “Will you mind doing XXX, YYY,ZZZ….?”

So there I was, launching into another round of nagging at Mr. Cinical to do some general household chores like tidying up. Oh you know those stuff that irritates you when living together with a man, partly resulting from men’s higher tolerance to untidiness.  He mutters something (I’m sure it’s a swear word) under his breath while grudgingly carrying out said task.


Mr. Cinical: “Hmm, I just learnt a new term in contract law class that applies to this situation. It’s called duress. An illegitimate pressure that causes undue influence, exerted upon someone to perform an act he normally will not perform.”

Me: “It’s not illegitimate, I think we have a contract of marriage. Haha”

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First Steps

It had been raining for the past few days, which meant that there were puddles.

And puddles on weekends meant that my purple rubber boots get to come out of the shoe closet.  They had been in cold storage since I brought them back from Sydney.

And I finally got started on Urbane Walks today too. It took a long while to get myself going, for one reason or another.

Well, the first step is always the hardest and I’m glad these boots helped.

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Life with a Law Student: The Invisible Hand

Mr Cinical: Sometimes, in front of my friends, I refer to you as the “invisible hand”.

Me: Oh, you mean that I have the effect of injecting some equilibrium into your life? (Obviously I was thinking Adam Smith).

Mr. Cinical: Errr, no. It strikes at times when I (have to) keep you company instead of exercising the option to hang out with my friends.

And hence, in patent law language, you are “a method comprising: signaling one’s intention without any physical contact, verbal communication or telepathy, exercising undue influence based, at least in part on the signaling, responsive to an event that that causes unhappiness “.

Me: ………….. In plain english,  you mean I call the shots lah!

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