Monday, 29 December 2008

M is for mendacity

Mendacity - n - the tendency to be untruthful

"Yes, the present was just perfect, exactly what I wanted", Barmaid uttered mendaciously.

Today I have drafted a Particulars of Claim and it actually went quite well, which usually means that I've completely misunderstood the requirements of the exercise and have messed up big style. Curiously the study pack literature states that for claims in negligence, the Claimant's date of birth must be included in the Particulars of Claim, but none have been provided by my provider? There are also no details of claim number or which court the case is to be heard, which makes it all a bit of a farce. I just made something up - nowt new there then:-)

I've been practising my advocacy and feel more than a little uncomfortable with my first stab at Civil Litigation. Barman yawned 3 times whilst I was going through it with him, so I guess it is just as I thought, dull and unimaginative, but it's difficult to set the world on fire when it's just an application for more time to serve a defence.

Yesterday I finally managed to complete this month's Criminal Litigation homework, but I'm uncertain that I've conquered the subject and had to guess the answers to several of the questions. I really thought that Criminal Litigation would be relatively easy for me, but it is turning out to be a bit of a nightmare and it is Civil Litigation that is easier to digest. We only have one more lot of Civil and Criminal Litigation homework before the MCT exam at the end of February and at this point in time, I feel ill prepared. Oh well, perhaps I'll have a eureka moment before the exam.

I have another study weekend looming and simply can't wait to receive the results from the Legal Research mock *cough*. Unfortunately we have an SGS to go through the papers, which means public humiliation for me, I'd rather forget all about it and move on. I'm also eagerly awaiting the 'proper' Legal Research exam handouts which we receive this weekend, to hand in at the end of January. Apparently 8 out of 10 BVC students fail first time, so at least I won't be lonely on the naughty step. Just please, not another negligence paper, I'm negligenced up to the ears.

My pro bono has been sadly neglected of late, so I'm determined to make more time in the New Year to make amends and put aside at least 2 days a month for that. I've yet to do any dining and will certainly have to get my finger out on that side of things too, but it's not easy when living at 'the back of beyond' and having to travel to London for everything. I've promised to take my best friend and sister-in-law along to a guest night, so plan to get something booked after Christmas. Best friend is rather loud at the best of times and even more so when nervous or drunk, which will probably result in an entertaining evening for all unfortunate enough to be sat near to our table.

I must admit to feeling quite pleased with myself with regards to ploughing through this month's homework. 3 weeks ago I was pretty certain that I wouldn't be able to get through it all, but with just Conference homework left to do, it's looking quite hopeful. A good proportion of the said homework was completed whilst under the influence and it remains to be seen whether this has enhanced my academic skills or not, but I'm quietly confident that it has:-)

Tuesday, 23 December 2008

Merry Christmas Everyone

Merry Christmas

Monday, 22 December 2008

In the dog-house

"Whatever you give a woman, she will make it greater.

If you give her sperm, she'll give you a baby.

If you give her a house, she'll give you a home.

If you give her groceries, she'll give you a meal.

If you give her a smile, she'll give you her heart.

She multiplies and enlarges what is given to her.

So, if you give her any crap, be ready to receive a ton of shit."

Barman forgot our wedding anniversary, Barmaid is plotting revenge.

Perhaps a nice syrup of figs dressing to accompany Christmas dinner and replacement of those nice, soft, squashy loo rolls with 'Izal' should just about even things out.

Thursday, 18 December 2008

The letter 'L'

L is for loquacious - adj - characterized by or showing a tendancy to talk a great deal.

Bar students are renowned for their loquacity or should that be loquaciousness?

Wednesday, 17 December 2008

In my humble opinion

I have my hand in exercise for Opinion Writing to complete and it's turning out to be a long winded task. I'm stuck in liability, have yet to contemplate quantum and any sort of meaningful conclusion seems miles away. Negligence isn't my favourite subject and I'll be glad to get it out of the way and move onto something a little more interesting. I've sat on the fence so much with regards to who is liable that I've got splinter nonsitdownius.

Bar-Os is still on holiday and has decided that he will inject a little excitement into my life by:
a) shouting loudly each morning if I'm one minute late in taking him his breakfast.
b) spinning around in the stable once breakfast is over until I go back out to him and lead him out to the field.
c) refusing to stand still whilst his turnout rug (horse anorak) is put on.
d) refusing to stand still whilst I try to groom him, unless it's his legs or 'armpits' because he likes those bits doing.
e) kicking his food all over the stable because the carrots are too big and get in the way of the 'hard stuff' ie. the cereal mix.
f) lurking in the furthest parts of the field and pretending he's deaf when I go to collect him.
g) generally behaving like a spoilt brat, which of course is exactly what he is!

He will have a rude awakening in the New Year when he will be back in work. Something tells me that I also will have a rude awakening the first time my bum hits the saddle:-)

Friday, 5 December 2008

The Barristers - the end

Unlike many other law bloggers, who no doubt have more refined tastes than moi, I've enjoyed the whole series of The Barristers and particularly tonight's episode. There was a little something for everyone in this last episode, from the standard run of the mill Crown Court case right up to the House of Lords.

Iqbal re-appeared in order to be called to the bar, talk about his new job and to also appear as a litigant in person at his local County Court, which I'm pleased to say he won, not least because the embarrassment caused by losing in front of an audience no doubt consisting of 99% bar students, practising barristers and other related legal sundry would have been just too cringeworthy to contemplate.

Kakoly was put through the mill and had to justify her recent tenancy in front of her Chamber's panel, which I thought was extremely cruel given that she was at the time appearing in her first solo Crown Court trial. It's a pity that having gone through that ordeal of effectively being interviewed and accepted for tenancy twice, she couldn't have had the luxury of saying "you know what, stuff your bloody tenancy, I'm off to Much-Better Chambers around the corner, the money is better, the coffee less bitter and I won't have to pretend to actually respect and like the people I work with."

The cement case left a nasty taste in ones mouth, or perhaps that is just the dust from the said factory wafting its fumes over our homes? The campaigner is left with a £170'000 bill for the 'privilege' of having her case decided in the ultimate domestic court, rough justice indeed. It didn't show the Lords in the best of lights and no doubt the general public will wonder why our legal system is supposed to be the best in the world when challenging a public body can result in such a severe 'sentence'. I myself wonder if there is perhaps a European challenge to be had out of the case, or whether that's it for the poor woman. There really isn't much that our domestic courts can offer with regards to cheesed off residents who have to suffer the ills of inconsiderate planning consents and ignored environmental wrongs. I'm getting on my soap box with this one, so best leave it at that...

I do believe that the public will have a more 'rounded' image of what the job of a barrister entails, that's if any of them bothered to tune in of course.

Monday, 1 December 2008

'k' is for kook

Kook - n - an eccentric or foolish person

I'm sure that we all move in such exclusive, legal circles that we couldn't possibly know anyone kooky!

Thank goodness that BVC study weekend is over, got another one that looks equally as demanding next month, but it does appear that things start to calm down a little towards next Spring.

Today I've had a little look at next month's advocacy and haven't a clue what we are supposed to do? It's my first stab at civil advocacy and it is an application for an extension to file a defence. My provider seems to think that by some sort of osmosis we somehow know how to go about these things, but alas, that eureka moment just didn't happen and I'm a little confused? Do we just say our bit all in one go, or do we 'tennis match' the dialogue back and forth with the other side? I presume that the person applying for the extension goes first, but do they just have one go, or do they reply to the objections raised? Oh well, it all adds to the excitement I guess, sort of...