Sunday, March 21, 2010


Are any secrets left?  Ah, heck with it.  I surrender.

I confess.  I mentioned in an earlier blog that I had pruned our fruit trees.  Karen pointed out that I forgot one -- our hardy trifoliate orange, which appears above in the foreground -- so I lied.

Oh, gee.  I can't believe I posted this picture.  It's not even a good one.  Forty years ago my face would be red as a beet.  What's that dangling behind the orange tree, last item near the middle of the clothesline?  Maybe you can see if you click on the picture.  Forgive me, Carson ("Queer Eye for the Straight Guy"), it's so out of fashion, and Christmas was long ago.

Being a lawyer by training, I've often wondered what has happened to our "legitimate expectation of privacy," a test used by courts to determine whether some asserted invasion of privacy was impermissible.  Fifty years ago, we didn't publicly air information that is readily available today.  Now folks post on the Internet intimate details of their daily lives and bodies.  Can we legitimately expect anything to be private?  Someone who can prove a lifetime of caution in maintaining a sphere of privacy might be entitled to expect that sphere to be protected.  The rest of us?  Fat chance.

On the other hand, and quite curiously, the younger generations don't take showers together after participating in gym class or sporting events.  We did.  Yet they post revealing pictures on the Internet and cellphones.  We older folks do not (most of us).  This presents an interesting twist to that "legitimate expectation of privacy" test.

"Yeh, yeh," says Virginia. "Who cares about that stuff other than legal beagles?  What I want to know is what were you doing so long in the greenhouse this morning, door shut and all."

Ah, figure it out for yourself.

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