Reading the Legal Week Editor’s blog back in 2007 ago I came across a story about the election of the new Slaughter & May managing partner. For those interested in such matters – see the Legal Week story in full – this quote gives the flavour:
“As numerous law firm elections have shown, there’s always something to be said for being an unknown quantity. Less time to make enemies, less time to get on the wrong side of corporate and less baggage – that most dangerous accessory for any prospective managing partner.”
I was more interested in this pithy comment:
“Or as one Slaughter and May partner colourfully puts it: “Hidden away in Asia, no-one would know if you’re a shit or not.”
I quite enjoy looking at what caught my attention back in the day. This from 2007 did catch my attention
Giant penis etched into school garden with weedkiller can be seen from space. Sky has the story: “The unnamed pair of Year 11 pupils from Bellemoor School for Boys in Southampton, Hampshire, burnt the 20ft phallus into the grass as an end of term joke two years ago.”
Eye on the ball…
A Police officer, who was supposed to be guarding a wall damaged in the recent storms, was photographed by a passer-by. The officer was sitting in his vehicle playing a football game on a play station. The Metropolitan Police said: “The use of the games console was inappropriate and unprofessional. Senior officers are dealing with the matter.” The Sun has the story and a pic.
A linguistics professor was lecturing to his class one day.
“In English,” he said, “A double negative forms a positive.
In some languages, though, such as Russian, a double negative
is still a negative. However, there is no language wherein a
double positive can form a negative.”
A voice from the back of the room piped up, “Yeah, right.”
One for drafting ‘aficionados’…Punctuation is useful
Notice the effect of the following Dear John love letter with different punctuation:
I want a man who knows what love is all about. You are generous, kind, thoughtful.
People who are not like you admit to being useless and inferior.
You have ruined me for other men. I yearn for you. I have no feelings whatsoever
when we’re apart. I can be forever happy – will you let me be yours?
I want a man who knows what love is. All about you are generous, kind, thoughtful
people, who are not like you. Admit to being useless and inferior.
You have ruined me. For other men, I yearn. For you, I have no feelings whatsoever.
When we’re apart, I can be forever happy. Will you let me be?
And then there was this from 28th January 2007
I was amused to find that a blog linking to mine has a description of my blog. When the cursor rolls over the Charon QC link in the blogroll – up pops the tab: “Think Rumpole on crack.”
Allow me to introduce you to Mr Justice X. He has retired, of course – but he is still thinking, still watching and still has JUDGMENT.
I met Mr Justice X some time ago in the most curious circumstances. I happened to be having a drink down at El Vino’s in Fleet Street, sitting at the back. The “Ties Mandatory” rule had gone, and ladies, of course, had been allowed through the hallowed portal. As it happens, I was wearing a tie… a drinking society tie… rather exclusive. I was reading The Times Law section, naturally, when they did a proper law section on Tuesdays.
“Anyone sitting there?” I heard this deep sonorous voice. The voice appeared to come from above. I turned to find the craggy features of a gentleman wearing a pinstripe suit, stiff collar, silk tie. His black Church’s brogues were over thirty years old but were highly polished. He had a white handkerchief folded in his top pocket. A distinguished gentleman.
“No… please do sit down” I replied.
“What are you drinking?” the gentleman asked.
“Good grief… Bourbon wine… very well.”
He got up, walked over to the bar and returned with a bottle of Rioja and two glasses. I was both delighted and baffled when he poured both glasses. I enjoy a drink, but I tend not to set one up in advance as a spare.
The gentleman pushed the glass towards me… “To the King of bloody Spain!” and drained half the glass. It was then I realised that the second glass was for me. I picked my glass up, made a circular motion with the glass, and said “To the King across the water… Jacobus.”
The gentleman laughed “You’re a Scot. Don’t sound like one. Sound like a bloody news reader… are you a news reader?”
“No, I am not a news reader… I am a blogger… Charon QC.”
“You are a QC?”
“No.. I’m a blogger. I gave myself silk when The Lord Chancellor stopped dishing them out a few years ago.”
“Excellent… good idea.” the gentleman said, laughing and draining the remainder of the wine from his glass. “Drink up… we have much to talk about and, I notice from your tie, that you are a Toper.” With that my drinking companion, as I now viewed him, poured the rest of the bottle into my glass and then his.
“I was a judge many years ago… Henry is the name I use now. High Court. Too stupid and too difficult and too often appealed to get any further. I keep up of course by reading the odd bit of gossip… been looking at all this talk of wigs and gowns… ridiculous, really…. but as my old friend Lord Donaldson said years ago… ” I cannot see the point now of discarding something which has been out of date for at least a century.”
And that is how I met Mr Justice X … Henry, as he likes to be known, is going to be an occasional columnist. I have absolutely no idea what he is going to write about. He promises to write only after a few glasses but may shoehorn in a bit of law. A kindred spirit.
Muttley Dastardly LLP: Credit-crunch is for wimps….2007
Matt Dastardly, managing partner of leading City boutique law firm Muttley Dastardly LLP, is working late in his office in the City. His PA, Eva Braun, has chosen an elegant pair of Charles Jourdan high heeled shoes for the meeting this evening and is, as always, dressed in a well cut black skirt suit.
“So… I see from The Lawyer that yet more law firms are re-structuring, declaring redundancies and ditching cost centre oriented associates and partners and that there is the usual journo guff about law firm mergers.?”
Eva Braun looked at her notepad and said briskly “Yeah…. Clarke Willmott Chief executive David Sedgwick said in The Lawyer today… “These steps are being taken in direct response to lower demand for legal services being felt by all firms at the moment and we don’t take them lightly.” Apparently they are juicing 40 fee earners and support earners.”
“Usual commercial prop or is it wider?” Muttley asked, his eyes flicking between three computer screens on his desk and the bank of CCTV monitors on the wall to his right.
“Wider.” Eva Braun replied “Although the CEO went on to say ‘The numbers of people affected by this programme represent a very small proportion of the firm, and our priority must be to safeguard the long-term interests of Clarke Willmott.’
Matt Muttley sat back in his chair, laughed and said “Hey… at least the guy understands the need to protect the firm. How many associates are we saying “Ciao” to this week?”
“Two who didn’t make the cut at last review and one guy you felt was not made of the ‘right stuff’ because he was critical of The Bullingdon Club.”
“Ah… yeah… I listened in on one of his calls to a client…. for training purposes, of course, and heard him say that he thought that the guys in the Osborne Bullingdon Clubphoto were all tossers. Well I’m sorry, Eva…. six of the eight senior partners on our special executive board are members, as indeed was I, so….. if we’re not good enough for him… he can bugger off and work elsewhere. I’ve half a mind to trash his room with Dastardly later.”
“Yet another of your good ideas, Matt….. save it for your next trip to Corfu…. we don’t need the publicity”
Muttley laughed, lit a cuban cigar, downed a shot of ice cold Absolut vodka and said “Cameron was a member of the club you know. No idea whether he did the drugs. He never comments on his post Eton spliffing days…. but, in any event, The Bullingdon didn’t really approve of cannabis and other happy drugs… interfered with the desire of the chaps to trash restaurants….. so not ‘de rigeur’.”
“So… Matt.. how do you think we are shaping up with the credit-crunch?”
“Good, Eva…. good. We’re picking up CDS stuff, good quality Lehman fallout, a high level of good quality insolvency work, our banking partners are working their associates into the ground….. and we got out of property and low end private client work some time ago. Need to build up litigation for a few years… but some good lateral hires coming out of New York… so no problem.”
Matt tapped the keyboard for the computer screen on the right, read intently and said “Eva…. this is is great…. Law Schools are being flooded with bankers… and finance people re-qualifying. Didn’t Dr Strangelove tell us that law schools could be in trouble in the next few years… doesn’t look like it from this.”
“The crazy Dr did say that and he’s right…. this is just the GDL, Matt… the BVC is a different matter altogether… and there is no way the profession can sustain present levels of recruitment in the short to medium term…. so young lawyers are going to be flipping burgers again soon.”
“Excellent” Muttley shouted…. “Bloody marvellous….. maybe we should look at setting up a law school ourselves? Some law schools are raking it in.”
“No, Matt… that is another of your not so good ideas…. I’ve already called several law schools to look at their pricing structures. They seem a bit high to me….. buyer’s market now…. we pay the piper, so they can play our tune… and our tune is “Birdie, birdie, Cheap cheap.”
“Jesus… Eva… you are right. We should make you a partner.”
“I am a partner, Matt. I do banking work here and that includes our banking. I know every detail of the finances here, as do you.”
” Eva…. only joking…”
“We understand one another, then…” Eva said with an amused smile
“We do. Fancy dinner in The City…somewhere exuding style, sophistication and dribblingly delicious concoctions? See if anyone is jumping tonight?”
Enough for this post…back later…ineluctably…
PS – Don’t hesitate to disturb me…if you would like to have an advert on my blog for £10 for the year…. I enjoy being disturbed in this way. Send a DM on Twitter or email me if you would like an advert slot, surreal or sensible, as you wish . (I can help with artwork if you need it)