UConn Magazine: Dancing on a Sunday? Don’t Do That!

Illustration of guy dancing.
Illustration by Mike Chase ’11 (JD)

Of course, I’m not talking about the big crimes. Going out and robbing a bank would not be exercising appropriate social distancing. And what’s the point of grand theft auto when there’s no place to go? But take a cruise through the United States Code and the Code of Federal Regulations and you’ll find thousands and thousands of little things that can relieve a bit of boredom and land you in federal prison. If you’re having a hard time finding them, don’t worry — I do it for you daily on my Twitter feed @CrimeADay, where I’ve been counting and posting all the federal crimes on the books every day since 2014. That’s how I know you can’t sell a barrel with an oversized bulge. Shoot a fish from an airplane? Can’t do it. Pretend to be a member of the 4-H club? Off limits. Even mailing a mongoose to someone is a federal crime, no matter how generous your intentions may be.

Look, obviously you should never commit any crimes no matter how silly. So if I haven’t been clear: don’t commit crimes (they’re making me say that). But what’s a bored member of UConn nation to do in these strange times? Let’s start in the kitchen.

During these fresh-food-challenged times, we’ve all been eating noodles like we did when we were in college. They’re cheap and delicious and they’re in the pantry. Be careful though. If your noodles don’t meet federal specifications you may have to come up with money for a lawyer like me to defend you. For spaghetti, that means you can’t go around making noodles with a diameter of more than .11 inches. Or say you’re more of a macaroni and cheese kind of person. Well, your noodles had better be under .27 inches to keep the feds away. Naturally, you’re wondering: What about ramen? Well, so far, the government is willing to look the other way on that. Plus, federal noodle crimes are only crimes if you’re selling or distributing illicit noodles. Any good noodle lawyer will tell you that.

Read on for more.