The Gibson Law Group - February 2021

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COVID Ruined My Scuba Schedule! Reflections on a Year of Lockdown FEBRUARY 2021

March will be one year since COVID rocked our world. Rather than talking about the tragedy, please indulge me a few minutes to just ruminate. I have a T-shirt that says, “COVID ruined my scuba season.” There isn’t really a scuba “season,” but that shirt still makes me smile, as does the one hanging next to it that has one star and reads, “2020, Very Bad, Would Not Recommend.” Fortunately, humans can be very funny, even in times of crisis. The memes this past year have been among the funniest ever, as we whistle past the graveyard. We were in Honduras with my family and friends last year when the ‘rona arrived back home. I still shake my head when I think about my insistence that it was no big deal and only slightly more deadly than the flu. My wife insisted that it was a big deal … because the NBA canceled basketball. As usual, she was right. I will never forget arriving back at DFW to 3,000 or so passengers waiting to go through customs right after we had all been warned to stay away from each other. “Social distancing” wasn’t even a thing yet. That my wife, daughter, future son-in-law, and closest friends were trapped in there with me did not help. Going to the store the next day to buy basics and seeing aisle upon aisle of empty shelves was surreal and more than a little scary. Luckily, we had plenty of toilet paper because panic-buying hit Australia first and, through in‑laws, we were forewarned. It seems we’ve all gotten used to the new normal. At our house, we now have a “COVID shelf” stocked with sanitizers, masks (different types for different occasions), and surgical gloves. My wife has a “COVID bag” that would be the envy of any hazmat team. When we leave the house, we grab a bottle of sanitizer and a mask along with car keys and sunglasses. (The masks are handy when it’s cold BTW). Since there is virtually nothing else to do and we’ve watched everything on Netflix, we’ve grown accustomed to seeing bad movies at the movie grill on the three days a week it is open. The theater is almost always empty, but at least the service and food are still bad. Some things haven’t changed. I miss poker tournaments. I miss travel. I actually miss going to the office and working with the team in person. The landlord won’t let me miss paying rent, of course. I miss crowded restaurants, waiting

in lines, trivia night, and concerts. I miss breaking bread with y’all. Occasionally, but very rarely, I miss traffic.

I miss my parents, whom I haven’t seen in person since Christmas of ’19. The one time they ventured out of the house to come north, I was in quarantine. I can’t complain much because my lovely Aussie bride can’t go home at all and her parents, who usually spend three months a year with us, are 9,000 miles away. Down Under is off limits to Americans and America is off limits to Oz (and virtually COVID free as a result). It breaks my heart that she cannot go see them and they can’t come see us. I miss playing 500 and arguing with my father-in-law about the results. (Okay, maybe not that last part). Several of you have lost loved ones. Many of you have or had COVID. My heart goes out to everyone. I have been lucky so far, as has my family. I know that my complaints really are minor in the grand scheme of things. A vaccine is here. We’ll get the shot eventually. The CDC says what I’ve been preaching for years – lawyers are essential. This too shall pass and life as it used to be will largely return. Zoom hearings will become routine and save clients a lot of money. Our office really can operate virtually and serve clients effectively. Hopefully, as a country, we will be better prepared next time, but hopefully, there won’t be a next time. And please, let me back on a plane headed somewhere exotic.

–David Gibson



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Is the Hot Toddy Indian or Irish? A Closer Look at Our Favorite Winter Warmer

The Irish Account: Dr. Todd’s Boozy Cure‑All

Jan. 11 is National Hot Toddy Day, but how much do you really know about this popular winter drink? Though the word “toddy” sounds British to American ears, it actually has a contested history split between two entirely different countries: India and Ireland.

way, the results are delicious and easy to replicate in your own kitchen. If you could use a pick-me-up, try this recipe inspired by

The Indians and the British aren’t the only ones who’ve claimed the toddy: The Irish have a stake, too. As the story goes, once upon a time in Ireland, there lived a doctor named Robert Bentley Todd. His signature cure-all was a combination of hot brandy, cinnamon, and sugar water, and it was so well-known (and tasty) that eventually, his patients named the drink in his honor.


The Indian Affair: How the British Stole the ‘Taddy’

• 3/4 cup water • 1 1/2 oz whiskey • 2 tsp honey (or agave nectar for a vegan version) • 2 tsp lemon juice • 1 lemon round • 1 cinnamon stick

Today’s hot toddy is a steaming blend of whiskey, tea, honey, and lemon. But back in the early 1600s, it may have had different ingredients. According to, around that time, a popular drink called the “taddy” existed in British-controlled India. Originally, the Hindi word “taddy” described a beverage made with fermented palm sap, but a written account from 1786 revealed that the ingredients had evolved to include alcohol, hot water, sugar, and spices. The British swiped the idea of a “taddy” and brought it home to England. Legend has it that in northern England’s cozy pubs, the “taddy” became the “toddy.”

How to Make a Modern Hot Toddy


We may never know the true origin story of the hot toddy,

1. Heat the water in a teapot or the microwave. Pour it into a mug. 2. Add the whiskey, honey, and lemon juice and stir until the honey is dissolved. 3. Garnish with the lemon round and cinnamon stick and enjoy!

but speculates that it’s somewhere in the middle of the two accounts. Either

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This judge-to-be was named William Marbury, and he took his case straight to the U.S. Supreme Court. After hearing the case, Marshall had two options. He could side with Jefferson, even though he believed he was legally wrong, or he could side with Marbury and risk the wrath of the president, who he feared would dissolve the court. In a historic twist, he chose door No. 3. Digging through the Constitution, Marshall discovered a line that required cases to go through a lower court before coming to the Supreme Court. That made Marbury v. Madison , which had come to the Supreme Court directly, out of Marshall’s jurisdiction. It also made the law Marbury had operated under unconstitutional. When Marshall pointed this out, it was the first time the Supreme Court had ever ruled on constitutionality, which set the precedent for its power today. If Marshall hadn’t cared so much about opposing his second cousin in 1803, it’s possible that Judge Barrett’s nomination in 2020 would have been much less contentious.

To learn more about this crazy piece of history, check out “Kitten Kick the Giggly Blue Robot All Summer,” an episode of the podcast “Radiolab.”

Chief Justice John Marshall


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The reality TV show “The Bachelorette” is known for being packed with drama, but last year there was just as much scandal among its contestants off-screen as there was while the cameras were rolling. Late in 2020, not one but two past “Bachelorette” contestants ended up in court. ‘THE BACHELORETTE’ CONTESTANTS GO TO COURT Judge, Will You Accept This Rose? One of them was Chad Johnson, hailing from the group of hunks who competed for Bachelorette JoJo Fletcher’s attention in season 12. That season aired in 2016, but it wasn’t until two years later that Johnson sued Sunset Studios Entertainment and one of its executives, Cristina Cimino, for sexual harassment, failure to prevent harassment, intentional infliction of emotional distress, fraud by intentional misrepresentation, and wrongful failure to hire in violation of public policy. According to Deadline, Cimino told Johnson she would help him get movie roles with her studio, but that never happened. Instead, she allegedly lured him into in-person meetings and bombarded him with inappropriate calls and text messages. After years of back-and-forth, the case is finally moving forward. In July 2020, a judge ruled that all of Johnson’s accusations were proven except failure to hire. Upping the drama, Deadline reported that “no attorneys for Cimino or the studio participated in the hearing.” Meanwhile, another “Bachelorette” contestant, Luke Parker, has been ordered by the court to pay $100,000 for breach of contract. Parker, who vied for the affection of Hannah Brown in the 2019 season, has allegedly been making media appearances without the consent of the show’s production company, NZK Productions Inc. Each appearance was a breach of contract, and now he owes the company a pretty penny: $25,000 per appearance. According to Page Six, Parker might also be on the hook for bad-mouthing the show and/or sharing information about what happened on set — both things his contract forbids. Hopefully, the 2021 season of “The Bachelorette,” which should air later this year following the postponed 2020 season, will feature less drama than these real-life legal battles.


Inspired by

• 8 chicken thighs or Ingredients

• 2 garlic cloves, sliced • 14 oz chicken stock • 1 sprig rosemary • Finely grated zest and juice of 1/2 lemon • 1/4 cup fresh parsley, finely chopped

drumsticks, lightly salted

• 1 tbsp olive oil • 1 tbsp all-purpose flour • 1 onion, finely sliced • 2 celery sticks, thickly sliced • 2 carrots, thickly sliced • 1 leek, thickly sliced • 1 lb potatoes, peeled and cut in large chunks


1. In a large frying pan, heat oil and fry salted chicken on high until brown. 2. Transfer chicken to the slow cooker. Add flour and stir. 3. In the frying pan on high heat, fry the onion, celery, carrots, leeks, and potatoes until lightly browned. Add garlic and fry for 30 seconds. 4. Transfer vegetables to the slow cooker and add the stock, rosemary, and lemon zest. 5. Cook on high for 2.5–3 hours or until chicken is tender. 6. Check seasoning and add lemon juice to taste. Top with parsley before serving.

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COVID Ruined My Scuba Schedule!


Is the Hot Toddy Indian or Irish?

Slow Cooker Chicken Casserole ‘The Bachelorette’ Contestants Go to Court


The Cousin Rivalry That Gave the Supreme Court Its Power



When Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg passed away and Judge Amy Coney Barrett was nominated to take her place, the eyes of the country turned to the U.S. Supreme Court. It’s no secret that the court has a lot of power. Its decisions, like Loving v. Virginia , Brown v. Board of Education , and Roe v. Wade , have reshaped America. But how did just nine people come to hold so much sway? Well, the answer lies with two rival second cousins: Thomas Jefferson and John Marshall. Back in 1803, the Supreme Court was the laughingstock of Washington. It was a collection of misfits (including a man nicknamed “Red Old Bacon Face”) and met in Congress’ basement. When Marshall was chief justice of the court and Jefferson was president, the cousin controversy reared its head. Marshall and Jefferson were in rival political parties and, to add insult to injury, Marshall’s mother-in-law had once spurned Jefferson’s romantic advances, according to Washington legend. In 1803, Jefferson (a Republican) was upset because a judge whom his predecessor, President John Adams (a Federalist), had tried to appoint was suing Jefferson’s secretary of state over failing to actually appoint him.

The Supreme Court met in these windowless chambers from 1819 to 1860.

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