Dinner and a Casebook

because, as a culture, we've officially run out of legal culinary puns

Archive for the category “Uncategorized”

tortillas de patatas & employment discrimination


This is not a great photo for our time, but it’s smittenkitchen’s updated tortilla de patatas (halved– and it halves nicely). The tomato is a Japanese black Trifele tomato.

Petrosino v. Bell Atlantic, 385 F.3d 210 (2d Cir. 2004). An employee appealed the decision against her in her TItle VII employment discrimination claim, saying that while normally a Title VII claim requires you to apply formally for the position you want, her employer didn’t generally use formal applications to determine who got which position. The court held that this was insufficient so long as the option was actually available to her to apply informally for a specific position and not just to say “I want to be promoted”.

“Certainly, the rule is not inflexible. The law recognizes that “the facts of a particular case” may sometimes make “a specific application a quixotic requirement.” Id. But the exception is narrow and does not pertain simply because an employee asserts that an “aura of discrimination” in the workplace somehow discouraged her from filing a formal application. Id. Rather, to be excused from the specific application requirement, an employee must demonstrate that (1) the vacancy at issue was not posted, and (2) the employee either had (a) no knowledge of the vacancy before it was filled or (b) attempted to apply for it through informal procedures endorsed by the employer.”


spaetzle & corporate citizenship

spaetzle &

This is smittenkitchen’s spaetzle recipe, except I’ve reserved half of it to deal with tomorrow. The actual dish is sauteed with caramelized onions and topped with grated “New Zealand Swiss cheese” and parsley flakes. I miss real garnishes.


I’ve successfully purchased curry powder, though! This is a big step forward. My pantry’s chock-full of things that would be seriously improved by currying: lentils, butternut squash, basmati rice… I’m so ready for this.


Bank of U.S. v. Deveaux, 9 U.S. 61 (1809). This is one of several cases in which states tried to tax the Bank of the U.S., which didn’t go well. The Court here holds that if you’re suing a corporation, you’re really suing all of its shareholders individually, and so jurisdiction has to be worked out that way. This concept lasted all the way until 1844, and then was stymied by railroads.

“What is a corporation aggregate? It is a collection of many individuals united into one body, under a special name, having perpetual succession under an artificial form, and vested, by the policy of the law, with the capacity of acting in several respects as an individual. 1 Kyd. on Corp. 13. To say that it is an ‘ens civile, a jus habendi et agendi, an ens rationis, a mere metaphysical being, and that it rests only in consideration and intendment of law,’ are terms calculated to mislead the understanding.”

kale salad with pecorino and walnuts & end user license agreements

kale salad with pecorino and walnuts & end user license agreements

Smitten Kitchen’s kale salad with pecorino and walnuts. (Don’t get me wrong. Lunch was fast-food lamb.)

Fteja v. Facebook, Inc.,, 841 F. Supp. 2d 829 (S.D.N.Y. 2012). Plaintiff sued Facebook in New York over the disabling of his account and Facebook attempted to move the suit to California. Plaintiff claimed that the clause in the Terms of Service allowing Facebook to do that didn’t hold because the Terms of Service were only hyperlinked, not posted as part of the contract. It’s an interesting holding that comes down pretty hard on the side of the “By clicking Sign Up, you’re agreeing to our Terms of Service”-style disclaimer as fully protective.

“There is no reason why that outcome should be different because Facebook’s Terms of Use appear on another screen rather than another sheet of paper. What is the difference between a hyperlink and a sign on a bin of apples saying ‘Turn Over for Terms’ or a cruise ticket saying ‘SUBJECT TO CONDITIONS OF CONTRACT ON LAST PAGES IMPORTANT! PLEASE READ CONTRACT–ON LAST PAGES 1, 2, 3’?… The mechanics of the internet surely remain unfamiliar, even obtuse to many people. But it is not too much to expect that an internet user whose social networking was so prolific that losing Facebook access allegedly caused him mental anguish would understand that the hyperlinked phrase ‘Terms of Use’ is really a sign that says ‘Click Here for Terms of Use.'”

collard greens & subject matter jurisdiction

Sauteed Collard Greens as per Del Zimmerman on Epicurious and roasted potatoes with thyme, salt, and pepper. Egg fried in the leftover oil from the collard greens!

Grable & Sons Metal Products, Inc. v. Darue Engineering and Manufacturing, 545 U.S. 308 (2005). I was really hoping to start with something interesting to someone not a lawyer, but no dice. The issue is what kinds of claims can be brought into federal court, specifically whether a state claim which can be resolved only by solely federal analysis should be removed or not.

“The Court [in Merrell Dow] saw the missing cause of action not as a missing federal door key, always required, but as a missing welcome mat, required in the circumstances…”

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