My brother, Charon QC, incapacitated by falling backwards into a bath while shaving at the sink some months back – sustaining spinal injuries in a manner almost worthy of a Darwin Award – has asked me to write a blog post.
I don’t like to disappoint my brother, but I am otherwise engaged – watching the dancing in Blackpool on Strictly Come Dancing in the hope of securing a position as a judge. I am unlikely to secure a position as a judge in the law. We do not feel the need to trouble academics with the burdens of judicial office in the England & Wales jurisdiction.
As it is highly unlikely that my brother actually read my last post on his blog – he may do so this time – I thought I would dig up my previous post…
And here it is…. a vignette from the history of our sceptred and, at times, bizarre island nation…
Taking an evidence sourced approach to blogging - the new ‘fashion’:
This is what happened only last night when I nearly died laughing.
Unfortunately, the issue is not as simple as I assert with that proposition.
I had not considered the possibility of ambulance chasers in my vicinity at the time of laughing at tweets. Unfortunately, this Wikipedia entry, unedited by the new Tory Party co-Chairman Grant Shapps MP, is not that helpful in defining ‘tweet’.
I was laughing privately and not in a manner likely to worry the Director of Public Prosecutions (Even on a bad day at the office). No menacing laughter justifying a prosecution near Doncaster under s. 127 per theTwitter Joke Trial. Not even the hint of affray, riot, treason, or even failing to kettle myself when asked to do so, in a group of two, by a police officer. (See the CPS guidelines for public order offences – whether you intend to amuse yourself by committing same or not, as may be the case).
I was laughing alone. I did not feel the need to seek asylum at the Ecuador Embassy in London.
Events got a bit out of hand…. the following extracts from official documents provided to The Home Office and other relevant bodies serve as a narrative.
STATEMENT: FROM THE DECEASED – Professor R D Charon
1. I died. I am not, in fact, dead – as will be clear even to judges seeking an appearance in The Daily Mail (Here and here) - cf: despite the death certificate issued by Dr X who has not yet been struck off. (Infra)
2. However – in support of my claim for PPI, whiplash injury, loss of consortium with myself and all other losses, as yet unquantifiable, but which will almost certainly become clear by the time we get to court, I claim that I suffered nervous shock (without even a hint of novus actus interveniens in between) after reading the death certificate (infra) which Dr X handed to me after clinically processing my Centurion AMEX card on his portable electronic wealth modifying device (WMD).
3. The doctor attended at my rooms in Bloomsbury, accompanied by a solicitor. They happened to be passing – driving a Toyota Priapic hybrid car en route to a car crash nearby, when they heard my laughter and broke in on the off chance that I may need assistance.
Attended at a flat in Bloomsbury. The law professor was sitting in a chair at a desk. I was able to deduce that he was a law professor by his mode of dress. He was wearing full academic regalia, including mortar board and red doctoral gown. The professor’s iMac computer indicated that his name was “@ProfRDCharon”. This was apparent even without an on site autopsy. I was able to form this view by looking at his twitter history (infra) – The professor’s browser revealed that he was, and certainly had been when alive, on twitter. Professor Charon was a ‘goner’. Dead. Died Laughing. Definitely dead. A solicitor who attended with me also took the view that the professor was dead after consulting an accident claims website to gain a ‘value priced’ billable view.
[A] . I observed Professor Charon at 9.58 pm. He had been laughing. He was in his chair at his desk. He wasn’t moving that much after I had to break in. He had not responded to a ‘Direct Message’ on twitter for four minutes before, save to type “hahaha….”
I concluded he was dead.
People can die of laughter. He died laughing.
[B] In support of this I am able to certify that the cause of death was laughing
As an after thought to the extraordinary evening I had last night when a doctor and a solicitor broke into my rooms in Bloomsbury, unasked, to declare me dead - I was able to resume my life and took the opportunity to ‘google death by laughing’
I read this on a website: “In the third century BC, Greek philosopher Chrysippus died of out-of-control laughter after he gave his donkey some wine, and then observed it pigging out on figs… Pietro Aretino (below), writer, raconteur, and the founder of “literary pornography,” is said to have died in 1556 of suffocation from laughing too much…
Read more on death by laughter on Wikiepedia…why not? – death by laughter is a bit over rated and didn’t work for me…..
AND… from the website, aforeto mentioned:
“More recently… On March 24th of 1975, Alex Mitchell, a 50-year-old bricklayer in Norfolk, England, kicked his bucket while howling with laughter over the “Kung Fu Capers” episode of his favorite TV show, “The Goodies.” The episode featured a kilt-clad Scotsman attacking a vicious-looking blood pudding with his bagpipes, and roundly trouncing it. After laughing uncontrollably for twenty-five minutes, Mitchell finally succumbed to heart failure on his sofa. His bereaved widow reportedly sent a letter to the producers of “The Goodies” in which she thanked them for making Mitchell’s final moments so enjoyable!”
While I am, of course, sympathetic to the last unfortunate demise – it is pleasing to see that The Goodies amused someone. I am still recovering from the trauma in childhood of watching same on television.
A most puzzling evening. I continue, however, to live and I am grateful to my brother Charon QC for this opportunity to inform on this pleasing event in his blog.
BY Professor R.D. Charon LLB (Cantab), BCL, Ph.d, FRSA
– Emeritus Professor of Jurisprudence, University of The Rive Gauche, London Faculty, London
Author: “Legal Nihilism: Taking Rights Seriously, seriously”, Maninahat Press, 2009