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Why I Watch Jaws Each Summer—The Chamber Of Commerce Would Tell You There Is No Shark Problem

Here are the reasons I watch the movie Jaws each summer.

1. I think it would be  nice to spend a summer in Long Island at some beach town.

2. I like looking at the ocean.

3. I like movies that involve sea creatures because I like sea creatures. Here is a recent press release from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration about a program to restore the population of Blacknose Sharks. NOAA has great press releases about all sorts of ocean-related topics.

(Above–A Blacknose Shark. Here are some facts about Blacknose Sharks from the Florida Museum of Natural History.)

4. Because I’d rather see the movie many times than read the book again. I read Jaws by Peter Benchley a few years back. I figured that I would for once in my life read some mass-market beach-read type of book.

The book was awful. It was silly. There was some sort of plot line involving the mob or something like that. The book was not nearly as good as most of the novels I normally read. 

Call me a snob—I don’t care. I’ll call you back something in reply.

Here is an obituary of Peter Benchley. Sure he was a global best-selling author—But did he ever have a blog?

From the obit—

“It was while working as a freelance writer that he was invited to lunch by Tom Congdon, an editor at Doubleday, who asked if he had any ideas for a novel. In fact, he had. As he later described it, he said, “I’ve been thinking about a novel about a great white shark that appears off a Long Island resort and afflicts it.” The idea came from a news article he had read about a fisherman who caught a 4,500-pound great white shark off Long Island in 1964. Having spent many hours fishing off Nantucket with his father, he knew of sharks, and he believed he knew how to tell a story.”

 5. I like the part where the local Chamber of Commerce tells the police chief to keep the beaches open despite the shark attacks. The private sector is always making up some sort of story.

July 28, 2009 Posted by | Uncategorized | , , , , , , , , , | 1 Comment

Houston Galleria Held Liable For Not Protecting Safety Of Shoppers


The owner of the Houston Galleria shopping mall and a private security firm were found liable yesterday for failing to provide adequate protection in the case of a young women who was sexually assaulted at the Galleria in 2003. The woman was awarded 3 million dollars.

The owner of the Galleria is HG Shopping Center LP and the security firm is IPC International Corporation.  

A Houston jury found HG 25% liable, IPC 45% liable and the assailant 30% liable.

The sexual assault was one of a string of such attacks at the Galleria in 2003.

A security adviser for the mall told the jury that alerting mall tenants and shoppers of the attack would have created panic. I’m sure profits had nothing to do with it at all.

The woman who won the judgment was an employee at the mall. Being at the Galleria was not an option for her if she wanted to be paid and earn a living. 

Not panicking people was the reason to keep quiet used in Jaws by the town fathers after the first few shark attacks. They did not want to scare people away from the beach during the summer season.

At the Galleria, shopping is always in season.

Landlords and the security firms they employ to provide—yes—security have an obligation to help keep people safe.

November 9, 2007 Posted by | Houston | , , , | 2 Comments