Culture

Taco Tuesday Is Legally Trademarked But This Is Why That Doesn’t Really Mean Anything

If you go out on a Tuesday, it’s pretty common to see signs at various establishments that say “Taco Tuesday.” You’ll also so see “Wine Wednesday,” “Thirsty Thursday,” “Friday Funday,” etc. These are what you call familiar catchphrases, which means they’re used all the time, by people all over the world. If you ask who invented these standard terms, you’d probably say that God did, or that they’ve just existed forever. Well, that mentality perhaps might be correct, but in this great country of weird laws, it doesn’t matter who invented something but rather who puts their claim on it by trademarking it first. 

A taco chain restaurant called Taco John’s — based in Cheyenne, Wyoming — trademarked the term “Taco Tuesday” in 1989, and is sick of people using the phrase.

According to the Associated Press, Taco John’s has 400 locations in 23 states. The phrase “Taco Tuesday” is only legal for them to use in all states except in New Jersey, where someone there also trademarked the phrase before them. Guess we will never who actually coined the term int he first place. 

But the real issue here is how it can be possible for any one establishment, especially independent ones, to stop using the term that is as common as “happy birthday.” 

For years, Taco John’s has been sending cease-and-desist letters to several eateries for their illegal use of “Taco Tuesday.” Most recently they targeted a brewery that doesn’t even profit from the sale of tacos.

Freedom’s Edge Brewing Co., located near the Taco John’s headquarters, was advertising a “taco truck that parks outside its establishment once a week,” and used the “Taco Tuesday” catchphrase. Taco John’s clearly saw it and was pissed because they sent Freedom’s Edge a cease-and-desist letter to stop advertising by using “Taco Tuesday.” 

“We have nothing against Taco John’s but do find it comical that some person in their corporate office would choose to send a cease and desist to a brewery that doesn’t sell or profit from the sales of tacos,” the brewery said in a statement, according to the AP. They also said they had no idea that “Taco Tuesday” was trademarked. Hey, we didn’t either. 

People on social media say Taco John’s have taken their trademark of “Taco Tuesday” too far. 

Antone Duran said on Facebook that Taco John’s is going after the wrong people and said the term is so common it’s unfair to target an independent establishment.  

“I’ve traveled 34 states and throughout the country, I’ve heard or read “taco Tuesday” at restaurants and bars,” Duran said. “Even where I live now in Palm Springs. And I guarantee most of those places never even heard of taco John’s. So perhaps they were quick to trademark it, but they sure as hell didn’t invent it. And I guarantee they’re not going after hundreds of other restaurants throughout the country to demanding they stop. Lol. Petty for them to go after this place.”

Legal experts say that Taco John’s, unfortunately (or fortunately for the rest of us) doesn’t stand much of a chance in the court system to legally demand places stop using “Taco Tuesday.”

Seattle-based attorney Michael Atkins told the AP the catchphrase is used so commonly that it’s almost impossible to go after each entity that uses it. “Taco Tuesday” has been used everywhere from small signages at the corner shop to commercials to movies. 

“It’s kind of asinine to me think that one particular taco seller, or taco maker, would have monopoly rights over ‘Taco Tuesday,'” Atkins told the publication. “It has become such a common phrase that it no longer points to Taco John’s and therefore Taco John’s doesn’t have the right to tell anybody to stop using that.”

In some ways, we kind of feel bad for Taco John’s. They went all-in on a phrase that ended up being super popular, and now they can’t even make a profit on it. On the other hand, they’re an established restaurant making millions off of Mexican food. They’ll survive.

READ: Cautionary Tale: A Fresno Man Died During A Taco-Eating Contest And People Are Left Wondering How

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Family Of Man Who Died From Taco Eating Contest Sue Fresno Grizzlies Owner

Entertainment

Family Of Man Who Died From Taco Eating Contest Sue Fresno Grizzlies Owner

Dana Hutchings, 41, entered a taco eating contest during a Fresno Grizzlies game in 2019. He choked and died during the contest and now his son has filed a lawsuit against the baseball team.

The son of a man who died from a taco eating contest is suing for wrongful death.

Dana Hutchings, 41, died after choking during a taco eating contest during a Fresno Grizzlies game. His son has filed a wrongful death lawsuit claiming that the event organizers were not equipped to host the event. Furthermore, the lawsuit claims that the organizers failed to provide a medical response team.

“People say all the time he knew what he was getting into, well clearly he didn’t,” Martin Taleisnik, an attorney representing Hutchings’ son, Marshall told CBS17.

Marshall and his attorney are pushing back at the notion that Dana should have known better.

People have sounded off on social media criticizing the family for filing the lawsuit. Yet, the family and their attorney are calling attention to the lack of information given to contestants.

“If you don’t know all the pitfalls, how can you truly be consenting and participating freely and voluntarily? It’s a risk that resulted in a major loss to Marshall,” Taleisnik told CBS17.

Dana’s family is seeking a monetary settlement from the Fresno Grizzlies owners.

The wrongful death lawsuit names Fresno Sports and Events as the responsible party. The lawsuit also notes that alcohol was made available to contestants and added to the likelihood of the tragedy.

“We are devastated to learn that the fan that received medical attention following an event at Tuesday evening’s game has passed away. The Fresno Grizzlies extend our heartfelt prayers and condolences to the family of Mr. Hutchings,” a statement from the Fresno Grizzlies read after the death in 2019. “The safety and security of our fans is our highest priority. We will work closely with local authorities and provide any helpful information that is requested.”

READ: Kobe Bryant’s Wrongful Death Lawsuit Has Tragically Been Moved To Federal Court Despite Vanessa Bryant’s Pleas

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You Can Order A ‘Taco Vacuna’ And ‘La Cura’ At This Covid 19-Themed Taqueria

Culture

You Can Order A ‘Taco Vacuna’ And ‘La Cura’ At This Covid 19-Themed Taqueria

Pandemia. Brote. Vacuna. La Peste. Although you may find these terms in a glossary about the Covid-19 outbreak, that’s not what these words actually refer to. Instead, they’re options on the menu at a Mexican taqueria called “Tacovid: Sabor Viral”, a perhaps surprisingly very successful Coronavirus-themed restaurant.

Although to many having a Covid-themed taqueria may seem morbid or disrespectful or perhaps gross – I mean who wants to order a plague taco? – the taqueria is making light of a very serious situation with humor. Something that several other businesses have done since the pandemic began.

”Tacovid: Sabor Viral” is the Mexican taqueria going viral – pun intended – for its Covid-themed menu.

Ok…virus-themed tacos don’t exactly sound appetizing. Especially, as we’re still in the midst of a very real pandemic. But one 23-year-old man in the Mexican city of León, who was forced to close down his dance studio because of Coronavirus, is counting on a Covid-themed restaurant – and so far he’s been surprised by its success.

Brandon Velázquez converted his dance academy into a taquería at the end of July, and given that Mexico and the rest of the world was – and is – in the midst of the Covid-19 pandemic decided to call it Tacovid Sabor Viral.

“I had to close my dance academy during the pandemic [but] then an opportunity arose to return to the same place, however, people still did not go out for fear of getting infected.” he told the newspaper El Universal.

“I had always wanted to open a taqueria and, at the end of July, the opportunity to do so occurred. It was how I took advantage of the moment to create this business with a coronavirus theme,” he added.

Items on the menu are named after – you guessed it – the Coronavirus and don’t sound like anything you’d willfully choose to order.

The young entrepreneur detailed the name of each dish, taking full advantage of the Coronavirus theme.

“We have around 12 different dishes, among them are the ‘Tacovid’; we have ‘Forty’, ‘Quesanitizing’, ‘Pandemic’, ‘Outbreak’, and many others. The price varies depending on the dish you order,” he told El Universal.

In addition to themed dishes, the servers also fit the Coronavirus-theme.

When the pandemic hit Mexico, the government urged Mexicans to observe “su sana distancia” and the now common mascot – Susana Distancia – was born.

“In the restaurant, a waitress dressed as a nurse with the name of ‘Susana’ takes orders and works the tables, referring to the healthy distance campaign that was implemented as a precautionary measure,” he says.

To his surprise – and honestly mine as well – the taqueria has been very successful.

Brandon told El Universal that he’s been pleasantly surprised by the support he has received from customers. “I’m surprised because we have had really good sales, despite the circumstances, we have had a lot of support by the community and we’ve already expanded to have two locations.”

“Customers are funny about the theme we are using in the business, and they are delighted with the dishes we are offering. They enjoy it and have a good time,” added Brandon.

Things are looking so good for Brandon and his Covid-themed taqueria, that he’s looking to expand the food business and add new dishes to the menu. “There is always the idea of new names for other dishes that we want to include in the menu.”

Brandon also said that he’s looking to build out a business model so the restaurant could expand to other parts of the country as a franchise.

Apparently, people are really into Covid-themed foods, as this isn’t the first place that a shop as cashed in on the pandemic. Back in April, a panadería was selling out of Covid-themed baked goods so quickly, they couldn’t keep the shelves stocked.

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