Friday, September 30, 2016

WIRTW #432 (the "Hotel Norha" edition)

This what one’s happy place looks like
Jack White month comes to an end with a few clips from Norah’s most excellent School of Rock “Many Shades of Jack White” show. She was asked to do a lot in this show. Of the 19 songs in the set, she sang lead on 9 (including Hotel Yorba, in which sang and played guitar), guitar on another, and background vocals on 3 more. That’s a .684 batting percentage, which is a whole bunch for a 10 year old to carry on her shoulders. And she totally killed it (not that I’m biased).

Two things stand out for me. First, I love when Norah gets to sing and play guitar simultaneously, which she did on one of my all time favorites, Hotel Yorba. Secondly, I love how Norah is no longer just on stage singing or playing some songs, but is transitioning into an entertainer, cognizant of the fact she is, in fact, putting on a show for an audience.

Judge for yourself. Here’s the best 14:03 from the shows.

Here’s what I read this week.

Thursday, September 29, 2016

Will OSHA’s new whistleblower rules invalidate your settlement agreement?

When an employer presents an agreement to an employee ancillary to the separation of that employee’s employment, or settles a claim asserted by an employee, part of the bargain for which the employer is paying is finality. Yet, over the past couple of years, the federal government has made this finality harder and harder to achieve.

Confidentiality, non-disparagement, and other “gag” provisions in employee separation and settlement agreements have been under attack by various federal agencies, including the EEOC and the NLRB. Now, OSHA also has joined the fray.

Wednesday, September 28, 2016

The most expensive bottle of orange juice ever

Today, I bring you a first for the blog. A magic trick. Read along as the EEOC transforms a $1.69 bottle of OJ into $277,565.

I’ll let the EEOC explain it’s own magic:

Tuesday, September 27, 2016

Can you require flu shots for your employees?

As the calendar winds its way into autumn, and as the temperature starts to trend downward, we move into flu season. Which is why should pay special attention to this story from Employment Law 360:

Monday, September 26, 2016

Are you sure you want to take that case to trial?

Consider Locigno v. 425 West Bagley, Inc. [pdf], decided last week by an Ohio appellate court.

This case is remarkable. Because of some odd communications between a juror and the court, the concurring opinion gives a unique look behind the curtain of jury deliberations. And it isn’t pretty.

Friday, September 23, 2016

WIRTW #431 (the “stop breaking down” edition)

Last Saturday was Jack White show #1 for Norah and her School of Rock friends. One of my personal highlights was Norah singing The White Stripes’s cover of the Robert Johnson 1937 blues classic, “Stop Breaking Down”.

A video posted by Jon Hyman (@jonhyman) on

Show # 2 is this Sunday, September 25, at 12 pm, Brothers Lounge,11609 Detroit Ave., Cleveland. As always, stop and say hi, and I’ll buy you a beer.

Here’s what I read this week:

Thursday, September 22, 2016

Yes, these are my readers

It’s rare that I write a same-day follow-up post, but an email I received from a reader in response to this morning’s post merits special attention.

The email read as follows:
Your article on why your son hates Donald Trump is way off base. I think it exemplifies why you have not adequately informed your son on the facts such as she could always come here on a tourist visa….. Educate your son and let him know that part of the reason for Trump’s stance on ILLEGAL immigration is because one day an Illegal Immigrant just might take the job he wants to earn more money.
This was my response:
He’s 8, and while brilliant (the apple not falling far from the tree), I think the nuances of immigration policy might be a bit much for him. Besides, we start our policy discussions in the Hyman house with nuclear proliferation. Immigration policy isn’t until he turns 10.
I’m going to assume I now have one less reader, and that’s perfectly fine by me.

Discourse matters

My eight-year-old son hates Donald Trump. I know hate is a strong word. I rarely use it (except when describing the most evil of all condiments, mustard. I hate mustard).

But, Donovan hates Donald Trump. All you have to do is mention his name, and he will tell you how much he hates the Donald, and how he has no room in his life for anyone who thinks any differently.

Over the months of listening to our son tell us of his hatred for Trump we never thought to ask why. Until we did.

Wednesday, September 21, 2016

When is December 1 not December 1? When two lawsuits challenge the new overtime rules.

On December 1, the Department of Labor’s new salary test for exempt employees is set to take effect, raising the salary level to qualify for certain white collar overtime exemptions from $455 per week to $913 per week.

That is, it is set to take effect if the two lawsuits filed yesterday don’t delay or outright stop the rules from taking effect.

Tuesday, September 20, 2016

Regulating social media at work is a Sisyphean task

According to Ajilon (as reported by BenefitsPro), American employees spend 140 per year (or an average of 33 minutes per day) on Facebook, Twitter, Instagram and other social networks. Aggregated across all employees, the survey estimates this personal time costs employers $192.4 billion each year.

These numbers, however, merely beg the questions — (1) should you care and (2) what can you do about it?

Monday, September 19, 2016

11th circuit decision on dreadlocks and race asks big questions on the meaning of discrimination

In EEOC v. Catastrophe Management Solutions [pdf], the EEOC asked the 11th Circuit to determine whether banning an African-American employee from wearing dreadlocks constitutes race discrimination.

In a lengthy decision that discusses the very concept of race, the court answered the question “no”.

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