"At his best, man is the noblest of animals; separated from law and justice he..."
Long Distance II (Poem of the Week) 28 August 2014
Our poem of the week is by Tony Harrison and is a poignant piece on loss and love.
Though my mother was already two years dead
Dad kept her slippers warming by the gas,
put hot water bottles her side of the bed
and still went to renew her transport pass.
You couldn’t just drop in. You had to phone.
He’d put you off an hour to give him time
to clear away her things and look alone
as though his still raw love were such a crime.
He couldn’t risk my blight of disbelief
though sure that very soon he’d hear her key
scrape in the rusted lock and end his grief.
He knew she’d just popped out to get the tea.
I believe life ends with death, and that is all.
You haven’t both gone shopping; just the same,
in my new black leather phone book there’s your name
and the disconnected number I still call.
American lawyers have long been the butt of dinner party jokes, and suffered the slings and arrows of outrageous late-night comedy routines. However, the most grievous wrong inflicted upon them came from a man who is beyond the reach of a libel action.
“The first thing we do, let’s kill all the lawyers,” wrote Shakespeare in Henry VI Part 2. That murderous line, uttered by a character named Dick the Butcher, the henchman of the rebel leader Jack Cade, now…. (click below for full article)
Clen Mackenzie – Are you starting something? 26 July 2014
Our colleague, Clen Mackenzie, is currently in Glasgow for the Commonwealth Games. I noted this little cartoon expressing sentiments with which he would be familiar!!
Keith Hamilton – Preparing for another triathlon 25 July 2014
Our colleague, Keith Hamilton, is preparing for another triathlon. The spirit is willing but the flesh is weak!!
URGENT NEWS 19 May 2014
Please note that we have again been receiving e-mails and enquiries from across the globe in relation to a scam that our IT consultants advise emanates from China. It would appear that e-mails have been sent to multiple recipients using a corruption of our e-mail address. The recipients are advised that they may be beneficiaries in an estate that is being handled by Martin Campbell. Please note that this is a scam. Do not reply or engage with the sender. You can see from our website and face book that the message does not come from our site.
Please also note that our system has not been corrupted. The recipients are not clients of this office. There has been no compromise of our security or client base.
Unfortunately, there is nothing that we can do about this. The e-mail does not come from this firm. It is an attempt to try to entice recipients to divulge personal information. Please do not comply with any request.
Betty Rabbitte and the Reverend 7 April 2014
DEATH BY ATTORNEY? 21 March 2014
Lawyers are not exempt from asking asinine questions. American lawyers however tend to excel in this department as exemplified by the selection below.
These are from a book called Disorder in the American Courts and are things people actually said in court, word for word, taken down and published by court reporters who had the torment of staying calm while the exchanges were taking place.
ATTORNEY: What was the first thing your husband said to you that morning?
WITNESS: He said, ‘Where am I, Cathy?’
ATTORNEY: And why did that upset you?
WITNESS: My name is Susan!
ATTORNEY: Are you sexually active?
WITNESS: No, I just lie there.
ATTORNEY: What is your date of birth?
WITNESS: July 18th.
ATTORNEY: What year?
WITNESS: Every year.
ATTORNEY: How old is your son, the one living with you?
WITNESS: Thirty-eight or thirty-five, I can’t remember which.
ATTORNEY: How long has he lived with you?
WITNESS: Forty-five years.
ATTORNEY: This myasthenia gravis, does it affect your memory at all?
ATTORNEY: And in what ways does it affect your memory?
WITNESS: I forget..
ATTORNEY: You forget? Can you give us an example of something you forgot?
ATTORNEY: Now doctor, isn’t it true that when a person dies in his sleep, he doesn’t know about it until the next morning?
WITNESS: Did you actually pass the bar exam?
ATTORNEY: The youngest son, the 20-year-old, how old is he?
WITNESS: He’s 20, much like your IQ.
ATTORNEY: Were you present when your picture was taken?
WITNESS: Are you shitting me?
ATTORNEY: So the date of conception (of the baby) was August 8th?
ATTORNEY: And what were you doing at that time?
WITNESS: Getting laid
ATTORNEY: She had three children , right?
ATTORNEY: How many were boys?
ATTORNEY: Were there any girls?
WITNESS: Your Honour, I think I need a different attorney. Can I get a new attorney?
ATTORNEY: How was your first marriage terminated?
WITNESS: By death..
ATTORNEY: And by whose death was it terminated?
WITNESS: Take a guess.
ATTORNEY: Can you describe the individual?
WITNESS: He was about medium height and had a beard
ATTORNEY: Was this a male or a female?
WITNESS: Unless the Circus was in town I’m going with male.
ATTORNEY: Doctor , how many of your autopsies have you performed on dead people?
WITNESS: All of them. The live ones put up too much of a fight.
ATTORNEY: ALL your responses MUST be oral, OK? What school did you go to?
ATTORNEY: Do you recall the time that you examined the body?
WITNESS: The autopsy started around 8:30 PM
ATTORNEY: And Mr. Denton was dead at the time?
WITNESS: If not, he was by the time I finished.
ATTORNEY: Are you qualified to give a urine sample?
WITNESS: Are you qualified to ask that question?
ATTORNEY: Doctor, before you performed the autopsy, did you check for a pulse?
ATTORNEY: Did you check for blood pressure?
ATTORNEY: Did you check for breathing?
ATTORNEY: So, then it is possible that the patient was alive when you began the autopsy?
ATTORNEY: How can you be so sure, Doctor?
WITNESS: Because his brain was sitting on my desk in a jar.
ATTORNEY: I see, but could the patient have still been alive, nevertheless?
WITNESS: Yes, it is possible that he could have been alive and practicing law
Divorce Lawyers at War 27 February 2014
I hope that we in Northern Ireland do not experience the fractious fallout that has arisen between divorce lawyers in England over their ‘celebrity’ clientele. Mayfair lawyers Sear Tooth, who have acted in such high profile cases such as that of the Abramoviches, accused rivals Vardags of poaching clients. The matter has been settled after some acrimony with compensation being paid without an admission of liability. We, in Northern Ireland, have a deficit of ‘celebrities’ to whom we could charge the £500 per hour reputedly paid to these firms!
Death of a Gardener 26 February 2014
This is my favourite ‘Spring’ poem juxtaposing the cycles of nature and life. Phoebe Hesketh spent her whole life in rural Lancashire and was a prolific poet but I think this is her best.
Death of a Gardener
He rested through the Winter, watched the rain
On his cold garden, slept, awoke to snow
Padding the window, thatching the roof again
With silence. He was grateful for the slow
Nights and undemanding days; the dark
Protected him; the pause grew big with cold.
Mice in the shed scuffled like leaves; a spark
Hissed from his pipe as he dreamed beside the fire.
All at once light sharpened; earth drew breath,
Stirred; and he woke to strangeness that was Spring,
Stood on the grass, felt movement underneath
Like a child in the womb; hope troubled him to bring
Barrow and spade once more to the waiting soil.
Slower his lift and thrust; a blackbird filled
Long intervals with song; a worm could coil
To safety underneath the hesitant blade.
Hands tremulous as cherry branches kept
Faith with struggling seedlings till the earth
Kept faith with him, claimed him as he slept
Cold in the sun beside his upright spade.
The truth is, family courts are fair to fathers 20 February 2014
When women are judged to have failed as mothers caring dads can win custody battles.
We learnt yesterday that a “permissive mother” had lost custody of her sons after a family court judge transferred the residency of her children to her father. The judge stated that the woman behaved more like a friend than a parent. The transfer was granted despite the two boys, 14 and 11, having lived with their mother since birth.« Previous 1 2 3 Next »