Friday, September 17, 2010

3089 Friday

Friday, September 17, 2010

It's frustrating when you know all the answers,
but nobody bothers to ask you the questions.


Yesterday was filled with shopping and lunch with people. Today was not filled, but somehow disappeared anyway. I don't understand.

Jasper woke me a little after 3 this morning, chasing a mouse. Thud. Scrabble scrabble. Crunch. Long pause. Thud. Bang. Scrabble scrabble. Then he'd finally catch it, and bring it onto the bed to present it to me. Of course, the instant he set it down next to my pillow, it escaped, and we had another series of thuds and bangs. I think over the next three hours he captured and released it on my bed four times. The fourth capture was at 6:30 am, and this time it stayed still. I thanked him for the gift, tossed it out the front door, read a book until I fell asleep again, and slept until 11 am.

Went to dinner in Troy this evening with six other people. An Irish-Mexican restaurant. Nobody was quite sure what the Irish part was. Even the potato salad was full of cayenne and cumin. Maybe it was so that if anyone complained about any inauthenticity in the Mexican dishes, they could claim that's the Irish part.

I drove Fred, the minivan, to dinner - it's his first longish trip since his refurbishment, kind of a test before I try to drive him loaded to NJ - and he behaved beautifully. I'm beginning to have second thoughts about selling him after the move.


There are all kinds of horror stories about trademarking and patenting, like people trying to trademark ordinary everyday words and phrases. The latest is that 14 years ago some guy in Wisconsin put goats on the roof of his restaurant to attract business - and he trademarked the idea!
Last year, he discovered that Tiger Mountain Market in Rabun County, Ga., had been grazing goats on its grass roof since 2007. He filed a federal suit in Georgia.

Danny Benson, the owner of Tiger Mountain, says that “legally we could fight it, because it is ridiculous.” But it would have been too expensive to fight, he says. He considered replacing his goats with pigs before deciding their heft and tendency to “root around” would pose a danger to people below.

Earlier this year, Benson agreed to pay Al Johnson’s a fee for the right to use roof goats as a marketing tool in Georgia, South Carolina, North Carolina and Tennessee.

In July, Virginia news outlets reported that goats on a hillside routinely hopped onto a platform under a billboard advertising two International House of Pancakes restaurants. Drivers pulled over to snap pictures, and one IHOP manager was quoted saying he enjoyed the publicity.

Johnson says his lawyer is monitoring the situation in case “they take it a step further.” Lisa Hodges, who manages one of the restaurants, says she doesn’t plan to intentionally use the goats for marketing. “We can’t help it that they climb up there,” she says.

Story here:

And then there's IHOP(pancakes) v. IHOP(prayer), and Macedonia v. Macedonia. Story here:

I'm sorry, but I find all this completely ridiculous, and it bugs the hell out of me that even though most people would find it ridiculous, it's true that "it's too expensive to fight it". Let's get together and find something simple and stupid to trademark or patent, and then we can sue everybody who has used that phrase or idea for decades and didn't have the foresight to trademark it. We could make millions selling the rights!

P.S. - you'd better trademark your own name. Someone else could take it away from you, no matter how long you've been using it.

1 comment:

the Gypsy said...

Your PS is so true! Suhaila Salimpour had her name trademarked to her husband, who was her business manager. When he left and divorced her, HE TOOK HER NAME and legally, she wasn't supposed to use it. She would come to workshops and say things like "Fighting my ex-husband in court to get my name back". Go figure...