APRIL 2019 LOPEZ LAW
THE LIFE ANDTIMES OF GEORGE P. BURDELL
FROM THE DESK OF Marc Lopez
Spring is finally here, and long gone are our hopes for a warm month in March. I’m not complaining though. Sometimes I get the sense that April weather was made just for me — not too cold to take a walk, and not so hot that a leisurely stroll leaves me looking like I’ve gone for a swim. Ever since my wife and I were married — and especially since our daughter was born — we have made a special effort to take as many walks as possible in the month of April. In addition to enjoying the milder weather, this is an invaluable opportunity to observe the power of nature. At the beginning of the month, trees and grass are just starting to reassert themselves, and everything has the smell of wet dirt. As the weeks march on, mounds of mulch begin to produce brilliant petals. Every neighborhood stroll becomes a visual parable of nature’s resilience. For my money, there are few sights as rejuvenating as flowers in bloom. As you navigate the spring landscape, take a moment to appreciate the little miracles all around you — the fact that they occur regularly doesn’t actually make them any less miraculous. Slow your roll, open your eyes, and, of course, always plead the fifth.
O ne of the M ost E laborate P ranks in H istory
Whether April Fools’ Day is a time-honored western tradition or a tired, unfunny festival of eyerolls depends on who you ask. Ask the mom who just got blasted with water via the old “rubber band on the sink sprayer” trick, and you’ll probably find the latter. But ask the kid who planted the trap, and you’ll get a hearty, cackling endorsement. Even if you’re sick of watching your back on April Fools’ Day and tired of the corporate cash grabs masquerading as (mostly) bad jokes that pop up like clockwork every year, you still have to give it up for the classics. Even the most bitter among us must admit that some pranks are so clever, elaborate, and inspired that they deserve their place in the annals of history. The name “George P. Burdell” will certainly reverberate through the hall of hoaxes for decades to come. Never make a clerical error with a young student who has too much time on his hands. In 1927, when William Edgar Smith was mistakenly sent a second enrollment form for the Georgia Institute of Technology, he had an idea. Combining the name of his then-principal, George P. Butler, with Burdell, the maiden name of his best friend’s mother, he enrolled the fictitious George P. Burdell in the prestigious university. Next, Smith signed Burdell up for all his same classes and, for the next four years, completed every bit of his schoolwork twice — once under his own name and once under Burdell’s, changing a few details here and there and varying his handwriting slightly so as not to raise suspicion. GEORGE COMES TO LIFE
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conflicts. He even flew 12 missions in a B-17 bomber over Europe in the 8th Air Force until a Georgia Tech graduate was promoted to operations officer and put the kibosh on his service. Burdell wed the fictional Agnes Scott student Ramona Cartwright in 1958, served on the board of directors for Mad magazine, and was nearly voted the 2001 Time Person of the Year before the magazine removed him from consideration. Barack Obama even did his part to further the myth. While giving a speech at the school in 2015, he began “Now, I understand George P. Burdell was supposed to introduce me today — but nobody could find him!” The only thing more impressive than Mr. Burdell’s abundant achievements is his fans’ dedication to keeping him alive. You may think your buddies’ inside jokes are long- running — this one practically willed a human into existence.
Somehow, despite the fact that Mr. Burdell never once attended a day of class, he managed to secure his B.S. in Civil Engineering in 1930. Soon after, he continued on to his master’s degree. At some point, George P. Burdell morphed from an elaborate practical joke into a bona fide legend with countless copycat pranks to his name. One of the most famous came early on, when a truckload of furniture arrived “collect on delivery” to a Georgia Tech fraternity, addressed to one George P. Burdell. Apparently, a freshman had felt snubbed by the frat and decided to get even. Burdell was continually enrolled in the school by loyal fans for decades. In 1969, Georgia Tech computerized the registration process, but intrepid hackers found a way to enroll him in every single class offered at the school that quarter. The man was unstoppable. Members of the armed forces carried on the Burdell hoax, and Private Burdell began to appear all over the world in dozens of
or during football games. Even in his ripe old age, he still has time to be the production assistant on “South Park” and read thousands upon thousands of magazines during his spare moments. Wherever he is, we can only wish him well and hope that all the would-be pranksters out there take a note fromWilliam Edgar Smith’s playbook this April Fools’ Day. After all, if you’re truly dedicated to your craft, what’s 70-plus years?
Today, people always seem to be on the lookout for Burdell, paging him at the airport
The Art Behind the Macabre Business The Bright Side of Dark Tourism
and the type of cash flow they produce —but it trickles down to the ticket sellers, tour guides, and T-shirt salesmen on street corners.
People have always been fascinated by the strange and macabre, as is evident by popular Netflix documentaries, true crime podcasts, and horror novels. Fromwatching public executions throughout history to visiting famous death sites, humans have been curious about the morbid and the taboo, always looking to catch a glimpse of something that takes us away from the doldrums of our sheltered lives. But where some may see suffering, exploitation, or ill-advised curiosity, others see dollar signs. And “dark tourism”keeps the cash rolling in. “Dark tourism”is an umbrella term used to describe people visiting and migrating to certain areas because of a titular dark event that took place there. Sites like the scene of Princess Diana’s car crash in Paris or serial killer Jeffrey Dahmer’s apartment in Milwaukee attract thousands of visitors each year, who all contribute to the pot in some way. Not only does this type of travel benefit the city — think of Paris’world-famous catacombs
It’s not just goths and devil worshippers paying homage either. People from all walks of life find themselves drawn to these sites. Professor Lennon from Glasgow Caledonian University in London, who helped coin the term“dark tourism,”says that the phenomenon stems from humans being“motivated by a desire for actual or symbolic encounters with death.”People have been profiting from the misfortune of others since the beginning of time, and the margins are steep. It’s pretty cheap to conduct research in a public library, it costs next to nothing to print out pictures to commemorate a horrible tragedy, and it’s free to stand on a sidewalk.
Where there’s a will, there’s a way, and where there’s heartache, there’s business.
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Lying is a bad idea. Lying to law enforcement is worse. It doesn’t matter if you’re a TV star looking to increase his bargaining power or an Olympic athlete trying to cover his own drunkenmischief— giving false statements to the police is strategically unsound. In addition to representing a moral and ethical failing, telling tales to law enforcement can earn you criminal charges. In Indiana, false reporting starts as a Class Bmisdemeanor. This includes: • falsely reporting that a crime has occurred; • giving false information as part of an official investigation; • calling in a false alarm for either fire or ambulance services; • falsely reporting a missing person; and • falsely alleging officer misconduct. It’s not a crime to give mistaken information to the police. False reporting only applies where you know that what you’re saying isn’t true. If your intentional misrepresentations of fact substantially hinder any law enforcement process or result in harm to another person, you’ll be charged with a Class Amisdemeanor. False reports of bombs, weapons of mass destruction, or tampering with consumer products are not even charged as misdemeanors. This type of lie is so potentially dangerous that it starts as a Level 6 felony. Bottom line: In everyday life, honesty is often the best policy. When you’re approached by the police, however, you should strongly consider embracing your right to remain silent. Unless you’re the person who called them for assistance, keep quiet and stay out of the way. If you think you may have said something you shouldn’t have, call the Marc Lopez Law Firm at 317-632-3642 for a free consultation. If You Can’t Say Something True, Don’t Say Anything at All MARC’S TIPS AND TRICKS Smoky’s most famous act of heroism occurred when she went where no man could go at an air base at Lingayen Gulf, Luzon. The engineers needed help, so Wynne tied a strand of telephone wire to her collar and Smoky ran through a 70-foot-long pipe in a matter of minutes. Without Smoky, Considering the stress of combat, it’s no wonder military dogs tend to be tough breeds known for their size and strength. German shepherds, boxers, and various bully breeds are well-acquainted with the battlefield. But in WorldWar II, the most famous military dog weighed only 4 pounds and stood a mere 7 inches tall. Smoky the Yorkshire Terrier wasn’t exactly what most people associated with Shakespeare’s “let slip the dogs of war,” but her small size is part of what made her such a hero. In 1944, after being discovered beside a foxhole in the jungles of New Guinea, Smoky met Corporal William A. Wynne, an American soldier from Cleveland, Ohio. The two quickly became inseparable, and she stayed by Wynne’s side the entire time he was stationed in the South Pacific. Smoky is credited with going on 12 combat missions, surviving 150 air raids, parachuting 30 feet, and earning eight battle stars. Smoky’s sensitive hearing allowed her to alert Wynne and other soldiers of incoming air raids. Smoky the World War II Canine Hero Yorkie Doodle Dandy
it would have taken three days to lay the wire. Her work kept over 250 ground crewmen and 40 fighter and reconnaissance planes out of danger from enemy bombings. In addition to saving lives on the battlefield, Smoky is also considered to be the first recorded therapy dog. She learned a number of tricks to cheer up troops and would visit injured soldiers at the hospital in New Guinea. After WorldWar II, Smoky andWynne visited veteran hospitals across the United States. “Corporal”Smoky lived for another 10 years after the war before dying on Feb. 21, 1957, at approximately 14 years old. Wynne would go on to write a memoir about his time with Smoky titled“Yorkie Doodle Dandy.”Almost 50 years after her death, a life-sized bronze statue of Smoky was erected at her final resting place in Lakewood, Ohio. Her statue is dedicated to the bravery of all war dogs, and it is a reminder that heroes come in all shapes and sizes.
Inspired by Food Network Ingredients
1 pint cherry tomatoes, halved 1/2 teaspoon crushed red pepper flakes 1/2 cup grated Parmesan cheese, ideally Parmigiano- Reggiano Kosher salt, for pasta water and to taste
12 ounces pasta, ideally fusilli
1/2 pound broccoli florets
2 carrots, shredded
1 yellow bell pepper, cut into strips
1/4 cup extra-virgin olive oil
4 cloves garlic, thinly sliced
1. In a large pot, liberally salt water and bring to a boil. Add fusilli and cook according to package directions. Add broccoli, carrots, and bell pepper during the last 2 minutes of cook time. 2. Drain the pasta and veggies, reserving 1/2 cup of cooking liquid. Return pasta and veggies to pot. 3. In a large skillet, heat olive oil to medium heat. Add garlic and cook until translucent and golden, 30 seconds. Add tomatoes, red pepper flakes, and 1 teaspoon salt. Cook until tomatoes are wilted, about 2 minutes. Stir in reserved pasta water. 4. Add tomato mixture to pasta pot, stirring to coat evenly. 5. Divide into bowls, top with Parmesan cheese, and serve.
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INSIDE THIS ISSUE From the Desk of Marc Lopez PAGE 1 The Ballad of George P. Burdell PAGE 1 The Bright Side of Dark Tourism PAGE 2 Smoky the WorldWar II Canine Hero PAGE 3 Marc’s Tips & Tricks PAGE 3 Pasta Primavera PAGE 3 PT Helps Curb Opioid Abuse PAGE 4
AMID AN EPIDEMIC, PT HELPS CURB OPIOID ABUSE Why Exercise Therapy Should Be the First Step in Recovery
Medicine, researchers discovered that, in cases where doctors referred patients suffering from low back pain to a PT as a first-line treatment, the odds that the patient ended up needing an opioid prescription decreased significantly. Other studies have also reinforced the same trend for treatment post-surgery: When physical therapy is the first recommendation, patients tend to use fewer opioids and actually spend less on treatment in the long run. The evidence seems clear: If patients follow the recommendations of the CDC and consider physical therapy before taking pills, they substantially lower their risk of dependence on and abuse of prescription drugs. Of course, you should always follow the advice of your doctor, but consider requesting a referral to PT first — it’s just a safer, more consistent, and less expensive option. And
Today, a startling number of Americans suffer from opioid addiction. According to a report published in the Annual Review of Pharmacology and Toxicology, more than 4 percent of U.S. adults misused prescription opioids in 2018. Prescription drugs can lead to enough tragic overdoses on their own, but as the physical aspects of addiction set in and prescriptions dry out, addicts desperately turn to more serious drugs like heroin and fentanyl. Opioid addiction is indiscriminate; it can strike anyone of any social class, race, gender, or economic standing. This is one reason the overprescription of opioids over the last two decades, coupled with a more recent flood of street opioids, led to more than 70,000 deaths in 2017. In an effort to stem the tide of opioid-related deaths, the CDC issued a set of new recommendations to doctors in 2016. They questioned the effectiveness of opioids for the management of chronic pain and encouraged physicians to instead focus on physical therapy, cognitive behavioral therapy, and other nonopioid pharmacologic options for long-term intervention. Studies show that physical therapy may have the potential to dramatically reduce opioid reliance, abuse, and overdose. In one 2017 study published in the Journal of the American Board of Family
who knows? It might just save your life!
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