Rumpole-itis

TheVamp was telling us today about her opponent earlier in the week. “He’d been an accountant or something in the City I think before re-qualifying in his forties and he was completely full of himself. He definitely gave the impression that he was far too grand to be doing such a petty road traffic case.”

“Which would really enamour him to the judge,” said BusyBody.

“Exactly. He had the sort of air that told you that it was only a matter of months before the supreme court would be calling upon him personally to be addressing them as their very own amicus on the great questions of the day.”

“There’s a very specific word for people like him,” said OldSmoothie.

“And there’s plenty of them around,” said BusyBody looking him straight in the eye.

“The real problem started,” said TheVamp, “when he got to his feet and every other sentence had a quote from Shakespeare or Wordsworth.”

“As if somehow he thought this was going to win over a civil district judge with a bunch of cases a mile high to get through before the end of the day?” said BusyBody.

“Another case of Rumpole-itis,” said TheBusker. “Only the late great Leo McKern could ever pull off that particular character.”

“And there are plenty who have tried and end up looking like a bewigged pantomime dame,” said BusyBody.”Always keep it simple,” said TheBusker looking over at the pupils who as always were sitting silently nibbling at their biscuits and trying to avoid any eye contact with the tenants in chambers.

“Never say in a thousand words words what you can say with just a smile and a couple of sentences.”

“It got worse,” said TheVamp. “At one point, he paused theatrically for about ten seconds before telling the judge very slowly that he was going to present him with four arguments, three good ones and a dud and in order to keep the learned judge on his toes he was not going to tell him which was which.”

“Ouch,” said BusyBody and now everyone was all ears.

“How did the judge respond?” asked TheBusker.

“He finished him off good and proper,” said TheVamp.

“Come on, what did he say?” asked Teflon.

“He told our good friend that if someone presented him with four identical-looking cupcakes and told him that one of them was made of dog, er, droppings, then even if he was able to work out which one not to eat by the smell or the steam rising off it, he really didn’t think that it would leave him with much of an appetite for the others.”

BabyBarista is a fictional account of a junior barrister written by Tim Kevan whose new novel is Law and Peace. For more information and to read past posts visit babybarista.com. Cartoons by Alex Williams, author of 101 Ways to Leave the Law.

May 2, 2012 · Tim Kevan · Comments Closed
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