It was shortly after 4.15 pm London time this afternoon when my mobile informed me that I had a message. The message read.. “I’m ite and abite .”
There are only two people I know who would say such a thing. One is the Duke of Edinburgh… the other is Geeklawyer. I’d like to be able to say that it was The Duke of Edinburgh… but the Duke is rather busy wrapping Christmas presents at Sandringham. It was Geeklawyer, making a quick trip to London from his lair *somewhere in Southern England*.
I met Geeklawyer outside Covent Garden tube station. The place was heaving, writhing even, with shoppers, tourists and senior members of the legal profession and, quite possibly former Lord Chancellors and High Court Judges, doing their last minute Christmas shopping. (I did take a photograph, but as it was dark it was not a great pic. So the pic above shows Covent Garden during daylight hours.)
I have been growing an arctic explorer beard… so…. ineluctably… the beard came with me, as did my Australian Drizeabone. I was standing there, waiting, smoking a woodbine… when I heard …. “Charon”… I turned, and there …. in the twilight mist of pre-Christmas London was … Geeklawyer.
I assume that many of my readers will be familiar with the Spielberg film Close Encounters….. well… think… alien coming down from the spaceship… the music… that was almost exactly what my encounter with Geeklawyer tonight in Covent Garden was like …. except there were no red necks or US Marines / National Guard (or, indeed, anyone) wanting to shoot, kill, arrest or extraordinarily rendite him… as often happens in Hollywood movies.
I gave Geeklawyer a Masonic handshake… but he did not respond. I like to do that when I meet people…. just to see if they are Masons. I’m not a Mason. I dabbled with it when I was young…. but the noose thing, bared breast and trousers rolled up was not for me.
Geeklawyer.. for those of you who need to know these things… was looking *Buff*. Pour moi…. C’est ne pas faire rien.
We decided to have a cocktail first at Navajo Joe, a cocktail bar in a basement nearby. En route… and something which even I found mildly astonishing… Geeklawyer took off a green jacket he was wearing, walked over to a bin, and put the jacket in the bin. I enquired as to why he was throwing his clothes in the bin. He told me, despite the credit-crunch, despite the collapse of Lehman, Woolworth and MFI… that he had purchased a new jacket from Paul Smith. It was a purple jacket…. not suitable for court and therefore not tax deductible. Some people like purple. Nero and Caligula and a whole host of roman emperors certainly had a taste for purple. Chacun à son goût…. went through my mind.
Now wearing the purple Paul Smith jacket, Geeklawyer headed for an ATM in Longacre to get drinking vouchers and we arrived at Navajo Joe’s. Double vodka shots and then an excellent marguerita with added tequila, lime and salt each, enabled us to cope with the pressures of Covent Garden on a mad pre-Christmas Saturday night – and we repaired (such a good word) to the Porterhouse Pub, also in Covent Garden.
The last time I was at The Porterhouse with Geeklawyer I ended up marrying him to @Jaffne from Twitter in a wonderfully tasteful ceremony, excercising my newly conferred powers as a Vicar of The World, granted by an excellent online institution in the US. I was, somewhat surprisingly, not called on to exercise these powers again tonight… but there we are.
Geeklawyer, not choosing to drink Strawberry flavoured beer, went for a German Weiss bier… I hit the house red. And then we had another one as we stood outside so that I could smoke a woodbine or two. We talked of many things – appraising the state of the UK Blawgosphere, politics, the concept of law generally and a most enjoyable early evening meet up it was. For reasons of discretion I do not discuss what we discussed in any further detail. Geeklawyer had to go to his meeting in High Holborn. I escorted him to Holborn Tube, eschewing the delights of being a sardine on the Piccadilly Line.
I bade Geeklawyer goodbye, watched him wander up the road, nipped back to Longacre, fished out the green jacket he had thrown in the bin on Longacre and sold it on E-Bay just a few moments ago for £18,000. WIN!
OK… I made the last bit up. The jacket is still in the bin in Longacre.