Judge to Lawyer: No, You Can't Be Hemingway

He rejects odd request with his own literary flare
By Matt Cantor,  Newser Staff
Posted Jun 28, 2012 5:38 PM CDT
Judge to Lawyer: No, You Can't Be Hemingway
1954: Ernest Hemingway and wife Mary Welsh in Havana.   (Getty Images)

A lawyer in an upcoming federal trial wanted to make sure he'd get a particular day off in a few weeks—because, as he noted in his request, the "undersigned counsel" is "a perennial contestant in the Ernest Hemingway Look-alike Contest" at Sloppy Joe's Bar in Key West, Florida. The judge rejected the request—not without literary wit, the Tampa Bay Times notes.

"Between a murder-for hire trial and an annual look-alike contest, surely Hemingway, a perfervid admirer of 'grace under pressure' would choose the trial," judge Steven Merryday wrote. "Perhaps a lawyer who evokes Hemingway can resist relaxing frolic in favor of solemn duty," he continued. "Or at least, 'Isn't it pretty to think so?'" he asked, quoting The Sun Also Rises. "Best of luck to counsel in next year's contest," Merryday wrote. "The motion ... is DENIED." (More Ernest Hemingway stories.)

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