Given the state of the economy, it’s no surprise that everyone’s favorite curmudgeon Andy Rooney chose to speak about “thriftiness” last night. To be more like Andy you can:

  • Make your own coffee at work, and save $1.50
  • Ride the bus to the Giants home games costing $4.40 both ways, saving yourself the $8 fee for the Lincoln Tunnel, and $20 stadium parking
  • Shine your own shoes (savings undisclosed, or at least not jotted down in my notes)
  • Wear your shirts two or three times instead of taking them back to the laundry after only one use

I was particularly intrigued by his idea that since he wants to use 89 octane gas, he can save himself ten cents a gallon by filling up halfway with 87 and the other half with 91. It won’t help me any, because right or wrong I assume the higher octanes are all rip-offs, but corporate scams – like charging you more for the “middle-rated” gas unless you do the math and go half lowest, half highest – are always amusing when exposed. Well, amusing, depressing, whatever…


But then Andy’s final money-saving tip doubles as a challenge to 1Ls about to start cramming for their criminal law finals this December:


When I go to a good restaurant here in New York for dinner I often slip a roll in my pocket for breakfast the next morning.


Taking a roll at a restaurant, that’s not stealing, is it?


Well, is it? Full credit available only for those that use both the Texas (or insert your state here) and Model Penal Codes as starting points for their essay…


[Update: I just found the embed for the video clip, here ’tis:]

  • If the roll was served to you no, not stealing. It must be discarded anyway if not consumed. If there is a ‘help yourself basket’ take it as you enter and still no. However I avoid those (and dishes of mints) as they are often contaminated with e. coli.

  • Carol
  • Edintally

    IT DEPENDS!! What do I win? 🙂

    1(a) Andy does take it with the intent to permanently deprive the owner of the benefits of said dinner roll

    But, under 1(b)

    (assuming the dinner roll was in a basket, on his table, served to him, during the course of his meal, which he paid for OR he took the roll with at least implied consent if not outright permission) is only theft when there is no entitlement to the use of the roll.

    In this case, assuming the above, Andy is entitled to use the roll.

    That’s my 0L answer, at least until Fall 09!!

  • Donovan

    Common law larceny is the taking and carrying away of the tangible personal property of another, with intent to deprive permanently.

    The deciding element would be whether or not the roll was the property of another. Did he pay for the roll? If Rooney lawfully owned the roll, he is not guilty of theft.

    Even if he did not own the roll, since the roll would be thrown away when Rooney left, perhaps it’s best characterized as abandoned property, in which case there can be no larceny.

    Probably, though, Rooney is not guilty of larceny but rather embezzlement, since he did not “take” the roll from the possession of another, but rather misappropriated property over which he already had lawful possesion, by virtue of having been entrusted with it by the owner

    (WVU law 1L)