Tuesday, February 24, 2015

It Goes Without Saying . . . . . . So why are you telling me this?

Lately, I have been taking note of the signs and warnings all around. Things that really ought to be obvious to all. But – we live in a litigious society, and we need proof that we did warn you, so you can’t sue us, we hope.

The first example that comes to mind is the infamous “McDonald’s coffee is hot” incident. Can you believe that this product liability lawsuit is still the ‘poster child’ of frivolous lawsuits 21 years after the fact? It was 1994 when a jury in New Mexico awarded $2.86 million to the plaintiff Stella Liebeck who left the McDonald’s drive through with a cup of coffee stuffed between her legs and suffered third degree burns in her pelvic region because cars didn’t have cup holders back then. So now the cups have to carry the warning that the coffee is hot. Doesn’t that go without saying?

And I would think it would go without saying that sleeping pills may cause drowsiness and that you shouldn’t drive or operate anything dangerous after taking? But I have a prescription bottle of sleeping pills with that warning label emblazoned on a bright red label. I should hope that they make me sleepy. The label also carries the warning that alcohol might intensify this effect. So if you are taking sleeping pills and don’t want to go to sleep, avoid alcohol. On the other hand, if you are taking sleeping pill because you need to get some sleep . . . well, it goes without saying that . . . you know . . . a nice glass of merlot just might be better than counting sheep.

So there you go, knives may be sharp, glue might make things sticky, and that frozen microwave entree might just be hot when you take it out of the microwave oven. Please don’t sue me if you read this blog and think it sounds random. I thought it went without saying.