Professor to host fake Seinfeld law class 'about nothing'

HOUSTON, Texas -- When Carliss Chatman was growing up near Hobby Airport in Houston, her parents wouldn't let her watch Seinfeld, at least during most of the sitcom's prime time run 1989-98. "It was on too late ... and probably a lot of other reasons," she recalls. Chatman got hooked on Seinfeld while attending Lamar High School, graduating in 1997, and forever since.

Chatman is a certified Seinfeld nerd (join the club) and like the rest of us, she's seen every episode over and over 100 times and can recite entire scripts. Today she's a law professor at Washington and Lee University in Lexington, Virginia.

On Wednesday, July 15, though, she will be a visiting guest lecturer, with the title of "Serenit E. Now Foundation Chair of Business Law and Ethics," at Yada Yada Law School, a "fake college where real law professors teach classes about nothing for charity," according to the Yada Yada catalog.

Yada Yada Law School started as a joke between law professors on Twitter. Then professors began presenting online lectures, using Seinfeld clips and anecdotes to illustrate law principles. Soon the college, as phony as Vandelay Industries on Seinfeld, was written up in national law reviews. The "tuition" is free to watch. At the end of each lecture, there's a web address where students can send charitable donations. So far, the classes about nothing, about the show about nothing, have raised about $12,000 for COVID-19 relief efforts in New York City.

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