Circuit Judge Ronald Dresnick delivered a brief history of water in the courthouse while reconsidering sanctions against the Lewis Tein law firm last week.
Partner Michael Tein's throat grew dry as he testified, and his lawyer, Carlton Fields shareholder Paul Calli, scrambled unsuccessfully to find a full water bottle.
The judge opened his pitcher to refill Tein's cup, noting the lid makes a vacuum seal. The circuit used to place pitchers on counsel tables, Dresnick said, but too many lawyers poured without opening until the vacuum stopped the flow. Then they'd force open the lid, drenching documents and laps.
"When I was over in criminal, I used to like to watch the attorneys," Dresnick said, recalling with a smile his anticipation of a soon-to-be-soaked table.