The Diary of Barrister A: Friday 23 February 07
And thus I clothe my naked villainy
With old odd ends stolen out of holy writ,
And seem a saint when most I play the devil.
Richard III. 1. 3
The day began with drizzle and was not improved by the arrival of a letter to inform me that I had not been selected to represent a group of Northerners in Parliament. Pity… I rather liked the nightclubs in the town; the girls in short skirts, stilettos and midriff revealing tops – almost a uniform up there – even in winter. I began to wonder how ‘Old Labour/New Labour’ I needed to be. It is all in the balance – a resurgent Tory party under WebCameron, with a fair prospect of seizing marginal labour seats, balanced against the rising menace of Gordon Brown [No blog / no personal website – ? I did find ‘Gordon Brown roofing’] and support returning to Labour when Blair finally goes.
More senior members of the Bar are attracting a fair bit of Press attention for their extra-curricular affairs. The antics of the barrister ‘gigolaw’ seems to have given the fourth estate a taste for scrutinising the, shall we say, ‘social life’ of members of the Bar. Circumspection and discretion must be the way forward.
All to play for. The work streams in at an acceptable rate. The clerks at RedLex Chambers do the business but I need to plan. I send an email to my research assistant, ‘R’, who used to work for a well known tabloid; asking her to find out if there are any seriously ill or old MPs who may not make the next two years. I suggest a few names. As an afterthought I asked her to see if anything was ‘known’ about MPs in marginal seats.
I received an email back within minutes with three names. Name 1: “Believed to enjoy dogging – surprisingly” Name 2: “Having affair with his Ukrainian cleaner – visa issues?” and Name 3: “Clean living but dim and rarely turns up for constituency surgeries.” Not that interesting. No serious scandals and not a ‘rent boy’ scandal or public school spliffing episode even hinted at. Christ… how have we been in power for nearly ten years?
Phone Danielle to tell her about constituency rejection. She laughs, which improves my mood. Jim rings up to ask if I would ‘care to attend a Chambers Committee meeting about the new logo’. Easy decision: No.
Lunch with J/Groucho
An hour later, I receive a call from Dick Matlock, constituency party chairman, to tell me that a mistake had been made – the letters sent out yesterday went to the wrong people (the other candidate has the same first name) and that I had, in fact, been selected. Dick is a man of few words, fortunately. No apology – just the raw information. That is the way he likes it and it suits me just fine.
I am on my way.