Sunday, January 23, 2005

Call me Ishmael. I have 293 middle names.

I make a point of not transcribing the stuff we read in law school on this blog. Sure there are passages of cases I've read that irk me, or that would baffle even the casual reader of law (are there any?) but above all I know this stuff is pretty boring. But what I read tonight (and should have read last week, sorry Professor, I'll be ready next time) fits in that quality of entertainment that is "so bad it's good." Or in this case, "so mind-numbingly long it's unbelievable."

Now, there are many genres of literature that are prone to milking the muse's teat for too long. Victorians are renowned for their long-windedness, writers of the Restoration have asides piled on asides. Poetry is no exception. Take Milton: you can go and have a bite and Paradise will still be Lost.

But dead gentlemen, the bar has been raised. Witness this excerpt from a contracts case. (Notice the use of ONE period.) Your move:

"Clause 13, the 'due diligence' clause, which exempts the shipowners from responsibility for delay or loss or damage to goods on board due to unseaworthiness unless such delay or loss or damage has been caused by want of due diligence of the owners in making the vessel seaworthy and fitted for the voyage, is in itself sufficient to show that the mere occurrence of the events that the vessel was in some respect unseaworthy when tendered or that such unseaworthiness had caused some delay in performance of the charterparty would not deprive the charterer of the whole benefit which it was the intention of the parties he should obtain from the performance of his obligations under the contract - for he undertakes to continue to perform his obligations notwithstanding the occurrence of such events if they fall short of frustration of the contract and even deprives himself of any remedy in damages unless usuch events are the consequence of want of due diligence on the part of the shipowner."

Sweet fancy moses, I've read Moby Dick and not even Herman "here's everything I know about boats" Melville comes close to that!

1 comment:

Thomas said...

Hmmm...maybe I should havr read that case....