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The Medlin News
I LOVE QUICK AND EASY MEALS! HOW DID TV DINNERS COME TO BE?
Some days, we don’t feel like pulling out our pots and pans, thawing the meat, or prepping all the ingredients to cook a meal. Thankfully, we have two other options: order takeout or heat up something quick — like a TV dinner! When I was growing up, we used to have TV dinners all the time. I remember how my mom made me a sandwich or popped a TV dinner in the oven for me to eat when I came home from school during lunch. She let me sit in front of the TV and watch my favorite shows as I ate — it was the highlight of my school years! But my love for TV dinners didn’t end there. When I was in college, I often relied on TV dinners as my meals for the day. And I know you and college students everywhere can relate to this — these quick and easy meals are a lifesaver! They’re cheap and delicious! Today, when I go to the grocery store and make my way down the frozen aisle, dozens of memories race through my mind as I see Lean Cuisine, Healthy Choice, Hungry Man, Stouffer’s, and many other TV dinners on the shelves. But as I reflect on the wonderful memories associated with these meals, I can’t help but wonder how the precooked meals came to be. Yes, they are very convenient, but how and why were they invented?
However, another account of this story exists — Gilbert and Clarke Swanson, the sons of the company’s founder, say they are the ones who invented these frozen dinners. Regardless of who initially started the idea of TV dinners, Swanson sold 10 million trays in 1954. These quick and easy meals gained popularity because, in the early 1950s, many women were no longer at home cooking; they were out working. Because women didn’t have time to cook elaborate meals due to their new responsibilities in corporate America, TV dinners were the perfect solution — in 25 minutes or less, you and your family could eat a delicious meal all while enjoying America’s newest pastime: watching TV. Then, as more households set up TVs inside homes, Swanson advertised their frozen meals for all to see. As demand for these meals grew, other companies began competing against Swanson. TV dinners were all the rage from the 1950s through the late 1980s, but as we entered the 1990s, 2000s, and 2010s, they weren’t as popular. While they were still being sold and were inexpensive and convenient for families, they didn’t get as much attention. But when restaurants began closing due to the 2020 pandemic, Americans again relied on TV dinners for food — Americans spent almost 50% more on frozen meals in April 2020 than in April 2019. Today, companies are creating high-end frozen meals, and some restaurants are selling frozen dinners of their in-house dishes! It’s wild to think about how far TV dinners have come since their creation. Do you have any memories tied to these frozen meals? I would love to hear from you! – Gary L. Medlin, Esq.
So, I did some digging.
Frozen dinners hit the scene and took the world by storm in 1953. Supposedly, a Swanson salesman, Gerry Thomas, thought of an idea to sell frozen dinners after he noticed the Swanson company had over 260 tons of frozen turkey left over after Thanksgiving. Thomas didn’t want the perfectly fine turkey to go to waste, so he added other holiday stables like cornbread, stuffing, and sweet potatoes and served them with the turkey on aluminum trays designed to go inside the oven.
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HILARIOUS REAL-LIFE CRIMES
They Seem Too Dumb to Be True!
Today, we have tons of podcasts, YouTube videos, TikToks, and documentaries about true crime. It seems like we can’t get enough of learning about the person behind heinous crimes and their motives. But what about the crimes you can’t help but laugh at because they’re almost too funny to be true?
his (James’) home. James also shared his phone number in case anyone had any additional information. Nicholas contacted James over text, and the two agreed to meet in person. The thief thought if he went to James’ home and returned the stolen items, everything would be fine — but that’s
Here are two crimes you won’t believe happened because of how silly and, for the lack of a better term, dumb they are!
Don’t forget to log out of Facebook! Nicholas Wig broke into James Wood’s house one night and stole his credit cards, cash, watches, and more. However, the 26-year-old
not how things played out. As soon as James spotted Nicholas walking toward his home, he called the police. When law enforcement arrived, they arrested the thief on the spot. Monopoly money doesn’t work in the real world. Michael Fuller stopped by Walmart to purchase a vacuum cleaner and microwave for $476. But instead of paying with real money, he decided to pay using a million-dollar note from the game Monopoly. The gentleman then demanded that he receive $999,524 from the cashier since he would need cash back for his “purchases.” The cashier called the police, and Michael was charged with attempting to obtain property by false pretenses.
thief left his Nike shoes, jeans, and a belt at the scene of the crime … but that’s not all.
When James got home, he was stunned to see his house had been broken into. But after realizing the thief had accessed Facebook on his computer, he decided to post on Nicholas’ account that he (Nicholas) had broken into
Can you believe these hilarious crimes?! Do you know of any we should highlight next time? We would love to hear from you!
DON’T SIGN AWAY YOUR RIGHTS! THE IMPORTANCE OF A FRONT LICENSE PLATE
Under the U.S. Constitution, you have the right to be free from unreasonable searches, including searches of your car. In our June newsletter, we discussed what factors must be at play for a police officer to search your vehicle. We mentioned that they must have reasonable causes based on facts and circumstances. Without this, the officer is not permitted to search your car.
If your car isn’t exempt from this law and you don’t have two license plates on your vehicle, you could receive a $200 fine — or worse, a vehicle search. We’ve heard from several clients that after being pulled over for not having a front license plate, the officer used it as an excuse to search their vehicle. Unfortunately, we often hear about this often. One
way you can prevent unwanted searches and seizures is by having your front license plate. While there are other reasons law enforcement may pull you over and search your car, ensuring you follow state laws is the best way to protect yourself and prevent this from happening. Not having a front license plate is the equivalent of signing away your constitutional rights to avoid unlawful searches and seizures — and no one wants that! If you or someone you know was arrested due to a vehicle search or other incident, please call us. We will do everything possible to have your charges dropped, reduced to a lesser crime, or expunged from your record.
For example, if the cop sees something illegal in your car, overhears you talking about something illegal, or believes something is unlawful, they can search your vehicle without a warrant. But there is another tactic officers use to look inside your car — and it uses license plates. In Texas, almost all vehicles must display two license plates: one on the front of the car and the second at the rear. Each plate must be visible, legible, and securely fastened to the car. The only vehicles exempt from having two license plates are road tractors, motorcycles, trailers, semitrailers, antique cars, and former military vehicles.
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It’s Tailgate Season! A LONG-LIVED TRADITION With professional and collegiate football games, live music, and other events this season, more and more people will be tailgating. For many, tailgating is equally as important as the game or event itself! It’s a chance for you and your loved ones to meet new people, play games, snack, and hang out before the event you’re attending. But how did tailgating start?
Battle of Bull Run in 1861. The crowd sang fight songs to encourage the Union army, took bets on how long the battle would take, and even caused a traffic jam after the battle was over! Sporting events and tailgating emerged during Ivy League football games. Many believe sports and tailgating first occurred together in 1869 before a football game between Rutgers and Princeton. It’s said that fans gathered to eat food together before kickoff. However, Yale claims to have started tailgating because, in the late 1800s, people had to walk from the railcar station to the stadium and had no time to eat beforehand. So, they started bringing food with them to eat before the game. So, the next time you go tailgating, think about these facts and compare the activities you do today to the ones fans used to do hundreds of years ago. Do you have any tailgating traditions? Are you planning on tailgating any games and concerts this season? We would love to know what you have planned!
In honor of National Tailgate Day, here are three facts you may not have known about the activity!
The ancient Greeks and Romans likely created tailgating. Two Notre Dame professors and anthropologists, John Sherry and Tonya Bradford, wanted to understand how American tailgating came to be. Their 2015 study compares the tailgating events we do today with those of ancient Greece and Rome and discovered the two activities are wildly similar. The ancient civilizations used to “tailgate” to celebrate their fall harvest, known as vestavals . The community gathered to feast, drink, and play games at these events to honor the fall harvest. Tailgating in the U.S. first began during the Civil War. Today, it’s wild to think about people tailgating during a war. But that didn’t stop families and individuals from grabbing their picnic baskets and sitting on top of a hill as they cheered on the Union soldiers during the
COZY FRENCH ONION SOUP
• 5 tbsp olive oil, divided • 1 tbsp butter • 8 cups sliced onions • 3 garlic cloves, minced
• 1/2 cup port wine • 2 32-oz cartons beef broth • Salt and pepper, to taste
• 24 slices baguette (1/2-inch thick) • 3/4 cup shredded Gruyere cheese
1. In a Dutch oven, heat 2 tbsp oil and butter over medium heat. Add onions and cook until softened, then reduce heat. Occasionally stir until brown (around 30 minutes). Add garlic and cook for 2 more minutes. 2. Stir in wine and bring to a boil. When liquid has reduced by half, add broth, salt, and pepper. Bring to a boil, reduce heat, and simmer for 1 hour. 3. Preheat oven to 400 F. On a baking sheet, brush baguette slices with remaining oil. Bake until golden (3–5 minutes each side). 4. In 12 broiler-safe 8-oz bowls, place 2 toast slices and pour soup into each. Top with cheese and broil until melted.
For resources, practice areas, and more, scan the QR code to visit our website, MedlinFirm.com.
Inspired by TasteOfHome.com
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INSIDE THIS ISSUE
If It Weren’t for Thanksgiving, TV Dinners Wouldn’t Exist!
Thief Caught Red-Handed Thanks to Facebook?!
Don’t Sign Away Your Rights!
People Were Tailgating During the Civil War?!
Cozy French Onion Soup
Unsinkable Sam: The Feline Hero of WWII
How a WWII Cat Survived 3 Ship Sinkings: The Story of Unsinkable Sam
You’ve heard the saying, “Cats have nine lives,” and while there are countless tales of cats falling from trees or high-above windows, one cat put this theory to the test, earning himself the name “Unsinkable Sam.” Sam’s original name was “Oscar,” and his legacy began aboard the Bismarck, one of the two first-class Nazi battleships in World War II. The Bismarck (with Sam) was launched on Feb. 14, 1939, and soon after engaged in battle with The Prince of Wales, an Allied battleship. The Nazi ship was severely
to a wooden plank and floated safely to the nearby shore of Gibraltar, a British Overseas Territory. British service members who found him ashore put two and two together and realized the cat — the very one their fellow servicemen saved in 1939 — was the only survivor of HMS Cossack, earning him the nickname “Unsinkable Sam.” The group in Gibraltar was from the HMS Ark Royal crew, and of course, they loaded Sam aboard when it was time to launch. But as Sam’s luck would have it, a torpedo struck the HMS Ark Royal just a month later, leaving him once again clinging to a floating plank near a boat launch back in Gibraltar.
damaged in this battle and ultimately sunk. Only 118 of the 2,200 crew members survived, plus Sam.
The British destroyer HMS Cossack found Sam floating on a board hours later, and they promptly scooped him up and welcomed him aboard. Sam had officially switched sides to the Allied forces. Now on the right side of history, Sam lived with the British crew for the next few months as they performed convoy escort duties — until a torpedo struck the HMS Cossack in October 1941, killing all 139 members aboard. Except for Sam. Once again, Sam clung
Luckily, Sam’s boating days were over, and he was honorably transferred to the position of “mouse hunter” in the building of the governor-general in Gibraltar. Eventually, the British restationed their favorite floating feline to a “home for sailors” in Belfast, where he lived for the rest of his days until his peaceful passing in 1955.
Sam’s story may not officially prove cats have nine lives, but it makes at least three seem likely!
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