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LAST LAUGH: Laugh and the world laughs with you

What lurks beneath
This bit of colloquy by my first and long-time client:
MR. SMITH: We do have to keep the exhibits separate from the original documents; otherwise, the court reporter will show signs of anger, and we don’t want that. Trust me, her innocent demeanor is a mask for a killer instinct.
Doreen Sutton, FAPR, RPR
Scottsdale, Ariz.

The company you keep
A. And I’ve also discussed with a number of other partners that they’re tired of dealing with the brokers, lawyers, thieves that are out there. I’m a trusted entity.
Q. I’m not sure I like that you put lawyers with thieves.
MR. DOE: Present company excepted. Objection.
Elsa Jorgensen
Birmingham, Mich.

Triathlon shaming
Q. How long is the bike portion of a triathlon? For a sprint triathlon, the one that you did?
A. For a sprint triathlon, right. The sprint is generally like 10 to 12 miles or — yes. The bike is 10 to 12 miles, the swim is just a quarter of a mile, and the run is 6 — 6 miles.
Q. And the run was how long? I’m sorry.
A. I believe the run is 6.
Q. Around 6 miles?
A. Yeah.
Q. I’m slightly humored when you say “just” a quarter-mile swim or “just” a 6-mile run. But that’s a personal issue.
Juliane Petersen
Beaverton, Ore.

Thinking under the influence
Q. Is your memory ever affected when you’re intoxicated?
A. Not often.
Q. Not often?
A. I can’t recall.
Sherry Ruschell, RMR, CRR
Atlanta, Ga.

If only it worked that way
MR. SMITH: You said 2006 again. I think we can have a stipulation that whenever counsel says 2006, she means 2016.
MS. JONES: Did I say it again? Heavens. I really – I am ten years younger in my mind.
John Wissenbach, RDR, CRR, CRC
San Francisco, Calif.

Rhymes with …
Q. And what did you do when you saw the rat with the cat in the trap?
A. I called Matt.
Q. Okay.
A. Is this Dr. Seuss?
Q. We’re writing a Dr. Seuss book here. And what —
MR. JONES: I was trying not to do that.
Jeanne McLaren, RMR
Landrum, S.C.

Terms of endearment
Q. Do you know why you were having those symptoms with your left wrist?
A. Something to do with the nerves being — I don’t remember if he said — it’s called honeymoon because honeymooners sleep with, you know, with your arm crook behind your neck, together, your husband and wife when you’re first married. Honeymoon something or other. I don’t know.
MR. JOHNSON: I’ve been married 10 years. I don’t know.
MR. DAVIS: You don’t have any problems with your arm though.
MR. JOHNSON: That’s a new one.
Helga Lavan, RPR
Hicksville, N.Y.

Inception point
Q. When was the first time that you met or had any contact with Dr. Smith?
A. First time ever?
Q. Yes, ever.
A. Ever ever ever?
Q. Ever ever ever.
Laurie Collins, RPR
Brooklyn, N.Y.

Whatever motivates you
Q. Why did you go back into driving after a three-month retirement?
A. He needed a driver, and I wasn’t doing nothing but sitting around and getting fat at the house.
Q. Okay. Fair enough. Fair enough.
Angeli English
D’Iberville, Miss.

Word association
A. So if he was in — was he living in Clay County?
Q. Peculiar.
A. Peculiar is on the northern side of Cass County, right?
Q. Yeah.
A. Yeah, Peculiar is not that far down the road. It’s definitely considered Kansas City, Mo. Why was I saying Clay?
Q. I don’t know.
A. Because I think at first you said Cass County.
Q. I said Cass, yeah. I don’t know —
A. I like Cass’s courthouse better than Clay’s.
Q. — Cassius Clay maybe?
Terri Huseth, RPR
Shawnee, Kan.

Yes or no
Q. Okay. You have to explain that a little more to me. So you said your father had lost a lot of weight.
A. Uh-huh.
MR. MARSHALL: Is that a yes?
THE WITNESS: Oh, I’m sorry.
MR. MARSHALL: No, it’s all right.
THE WITNESS: Sweet Lord, I’m not doing anything right now.
MR. MARSHALL: I’m just trying to help.
THE WITNESS: Yes. Keep me in check here.
Mary Seal
Albuquerque, N.M.

Starting young
Q. When did you speak with Doctor Smith?
A. I took my sister back and forth to her doctor’s appointments with him.
Q. Okay. What did he tell you about smoking?
A. He told my sister if she didn’t quit smoking, that it was going to prolong her healing. Then my sister did quit smoking. I bought her some e-cigarettes myself.
Q. Your sister was a — she was a smoker?
A. Yes.
Q. I think she said she started at age nine. Does that sound right?
A. Yeah, and I started at seven.
Q. You did?
A. (Nods head up and down.
)Q. And your other sister started at 10?
A. Yes.
Q. That’s crazy to me.
A. I know.
Q. Were your parents both smokers —
A. My parents was divorced and my —
Q. — and you’re sneaking cigarettes or what?
A. No, no, we could buy them any time we wanted. It didn’t matter if you were five or…
Q. Wow!
Lora Appino Barnett, RMR
Overland Park, Kan.