Love amongst the lawyers

Art Buchwald

September 24, 1992|By Art Buchwald

JUST when you think that you've heard everything there is t hear about lawyers, you pick up the newspaper and realize that there is still more.

A corporate lawyer named Frank D. Zaffere III has sued his fiancee, Maria Dillon, for breaking off their engagement.

Mr. Zaffere is asking Ms. Dillon, a 21-year-old restaurant hostess, to pay him $40,310, which is the amount he spent while pursuing her.

This includes the cost of a fur coat, a ring, a car, a typewriter and even the champagne consumed in Chicago's Pump Room. Mr. Zaffere said that he was still waiting for his VISA and MasterCard bills before he could give a final account.

While this looked bad for Ms. Dillon, Mr. Zaffere gave her an "out" by offering to marry her, providing she met certain conditions, including "faithfulness, truthfulness and marrying him within 45 days of her receiving his letter."

Frankly, I worry for Ms. Dillon if she decides to go ahead with the marriage in the 45 days allocated to her.

Let's start with the honeymoon:

L "Frank, can we go to dinner this evening beneath the stars?"

"Why don't you make a motion, and I will consider it."

"You make me so happy."

"That is what tort lawyers are for."

"Could we waive the legal talk tonight and go to the bridal suite?"

"You'd have to show just cause, and I don't think that you've got a case."

"Frank, will you stop it? This is our honeymoon."

"The jury is still out on how we should spend it. In the case of Bertha Braddock vs. Norman Lear, the judge ruled that couples could not go to their honeymoon suites without signing a memorandum as to what the legal purpose was. I am your husband, but I am also a lawyer and an officer of the court. We have to go by the books."

"Frank, do you love me?"

"With certain stipulations. If you committed perjury, libel or violated any other family values I would have to turn you in to the authorities."

"The next thing you'll do is advise me of my rights before we try to have a baby."

"I wouldn't do that on our honeymoon."

"There is no one like you, Frank. Let's take a walk in the woods and talk about the future."

"You know what this honeymoon is costing me, don't you?"

"Of course, Frank. Why do you ask?"

"If this marriage doesn't pan out, I'm going to ask for costs plus punitive damages."

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