"The practice of law is especially rich in charming typos; the seriousness of the occasion makes the pratfall all the more engaging."
In Rembar's era, legal drafting was done via dictation, so many of his examples arise in that context:
- When "soul discretion"appeared in a draft contract, he quipped, "that spiritual decision, though estimable, is a bit too unpredictable for a matter of this kind."
- In a memo regarding the outcome of a criminal trial, he gets back from the steno pool "a neatly typed page in which it is said that assuming a sympathetic attitude on the part of the jury, the case is likely to end in 'a quibble' (that is, a verdict of not guilty)."
- He references a letter "which refers to a party who has not stirred himself to respond to an attack as 'lying doormat.'"
- He is given a contract to review, and instead of seeing the typical language along the lines of "This agreement shall commence on X date and terminate on Y date," he finds "Disagreement shall continue in full force and effect for ..."
- And he cites a memo dealing with a tax on business income, which said "the tax was measured by 'grocery seats.' (You must pronounce it.)"