Wednesday, 23 December 2009

Blogging again...

Hello blogwatchers...if there are any left at this time! It has been some weeks, months even, since I have blogged. So much upheaval and rubbish has happened, making it almost impossible to be able to concentrate on anything other than getting through each day. To spare you the details (as even I am bored of them now) I am alive and well, have FINALLY passed my LPC (though I have yet to receive my certificate), have no training contract yet but am getting back onto the applications bandwagon after a much needed mental break. I still work at the lovely bookshop where I have been working for well over a year.

I bought 'The Female Eunuch' today...and on an aside I saw Mr.John Bolch's Guide to Divorce in store today! I could barely contain my excitement as I handed it over to a colleague for a customer! Go Mr Bolch...

So dear readers, as this is a short post I will not continue my ramblings much longer, except to say Happy Christmas, and I trust that you all are well...

'Normal' blog services will resume shortly...

Much love,

CBC

Tuesday, 13 October 2009

Baby P 'PETA Posters'

Is this too far?

I was watching The Wright Stuff as per usual this morning and this topic of conversation came up. Animal rights charity, PETA has created a billboard featuring Baby P's killer with the line 'People who are violent towards animals rarely stop there'.

I'm not sure how appropriate this is, particulary since the billboard is to be put up in Haringey, the neighbourhood where Baby P was killed. I can see how the campaign will be effective and has added 'shock value' as it is real rather than being staged. BUT, as one of the callers on the Wright Stuff said, the billboard will only serve to remind the members of the community about the incident and it will almost be like a sort of 'guilt trip' since citizens supposedly should have spotted that there was something wrong.

In my opinion, it's not a bad idea or campaign as in some cases it has been proven that there is a link between animal abuse during childhood and later going on to offend. However, is it right to suggest that children who are cruel towards their pets or other animals will grow up to become murderers?

Read the story here and decide what YOU think

CBC

Sunday, 11 October 2009

A new look

For a while now, my posts have been becoming less and less frequent as I have been elsewhere...in my head. BUT, a very talented colleague has given this blog a new look (goodbye multi-coloured roses...*sniff*) which is making me feel more inspired to post a little more often.

With 'Doc Martin' in the background on the television, I'm sitting at my desk winding down after a long and emotional day at work. I just had to post to test the new- look blog! Sad? Maybe.

Still no LPC results which is making for very nervous pacing and nail biting to the extent that I have been looking at Mc Donalds in a new light; that can't be good. However, this is only a short post as I am working overtime tomorrow at the bookshop. I just felt that I needed to comment on the death of another celebrity: Stephen Gately.

Rest in peace Stephen...

Till next entry, stay smiling and on the RIGHT side of the law!

CBC

xx

p.s. Get well soon Mr Brown!


Currently reading:
The Makioka Sisters by Junichiro Tanizaki
The Forest of Hands and Teeth by Carrie Ryan

Wednesday, 30 September 2009

The Importance of Reading...

A little incident occurred yesterday which only reinforced how important reading is to me and my own life. Of course, this is not the case with everybody. Some customers who come into the bookshop often sniff at the fact that some people read for fun. "I'm only here because X person wanted this book but I NEVER read myself...Who has time for reading when one can get off one's teets on bacardi breezers".

Okay, so I made that last bit up but the former is true. Often customers are proud of the fact that they don't read anything but the television schedule off their Sky teleboxes.

"What was the last book you read?" said I, trying to find a suitable book.
Snorts. "ME? I am too busy to read." say they.

Of course some people are busy and don't have time to sit around reading books all day but there is time to read if you really WANT to. This explains the hundreds or thousands of people who use public transport on a daily basis and often read during these journeys. Read before bed. Read during one's lunch break. Read on the sunlounger whilst roasting oneself on a beach in Ibiza (or any similarly original holiday destination)

Then there are people who cannot read. I understand that. It is sad and unfortunate but it happens. There is help out there and I wish I could help people who can't read to do so as it must feel lonely and isolated. So I appreciate not everyone can read.

Finally, I appreciate not everyone has an interest in reading. I work in a bookshop because I read...a lot. I do not read solely because I work in a bookshop. My place of work further feeds my need for new writing, information etc...

Now for the incident....

Yesterday, I was doing a bit of shopping as I needed things like envelopes and ink for my printer as I am doing job applications. On the way home, there are road works being carried out between two bus stops meaning that a two way street is now only one way (with on coming traffic being stopped to allow traffic going the other way to pass and vice versa) The two bus stops affected are clearly marked with fluorescent signs, emblazoned with the words,

BUS STOP NOT IN USE

So, aside from the fact that a person may not have seen the sign (for whatever reason), the fact that buses were driving past the stop and stopping elsewhere, was this not an indication enough that the stop was closed? Clearly not. There were people waiting at the stop for a long time, shouting and walking out into the road to try to coax the drivers to allow them to board. Passers-by going to the next stop told these people that the stop was closed and that they should start walking to the next stop. They refused. It's so unfair. Why should they have to walk to the next stop. The buses should be throwing their doors open wherever we please.

This situation escalated to the extent that the police were called. All because some people could not be bothered to read the sodding sign!

I shouldn't have been so annoyed but it was such a perfect example of people not bothering to read and then trying to lay the blame elsewhere.

A similar 'row' ensued when a customer in the bookshop brought two books to the till to buy. I put them through the till and they weren't happy at the prices of the books which were clearly stickered on the backs of the books. They had supposedly seen a shelf talker telling them of a discount on the books. Fair enough. I told them that I'd go to the shelf myself to check. Checked...no such discount. Customer then decided to get irate with me and told me to look again because they were sure I was trying to charge them more than they needed to pay. They then offered to show me because I (was stupid, uneducated and obviously grew up in a jungle with no food...this was not said so I am jumping to conclusions) obviously couldn't read. They made it up. But still wanted to be wrong and strong.

READ!!! If unsure, ASK. Don't ASSUME!

I'll stop now as this is developing into a mega rant but I wish more people would live by this philosophy...

Till next, calmer entry

CBC

xx

Sunday, 27 September 2009

So...

It's been a while since my last post, and not because I was doing anything particularly exciting or forgot about blogging, I have just been in a funny place lately...couldn't really be summed up in words.

Last week, I spent the majority of the week with my brother in Kent, which was a really good way to clear my head and thoughts a little. For this week, I really want to get stuck into applications and doing a bit of serious clearing out of my room and writing...

We'll see how that goes.

I hope that you are all well blog-watchers...

Till next entry,

CBC

xx

p.s. as much as I appreciate my neighbours living in the same house as me, listening to them singing along with the same song night after night (after dark) is just...plain...strange. Why are they doing it?!

Still, it's not as bad as the previous neighbours who I could hear having 'relations' in vivid detail in the upstairs flat...and to a particular song which I can no longer listen to without feeling uncomfortable.

*shudder*

Saturday, 12 September 2009

A Saturday Evening 'Quickie'

So, it's late and I am absolutely shattered. What an interesting day. I have been excited for a while to learn that Levi Roots was coming to the bookshop to sign copies of his new book. He did not disappoint. I guess I was a little disappointed that his publicist seemed to de-personalise the experience by constantly being at his side. Then again, it was her job so I cannot fault her for doing it... was just glad to have been able to assist in setting up for the 'event'. And hey, at least I got my book signed (by giving it to a smiley person in the queue with my name on a post-it for her to present to Levi for him to sign)

*sigh*

Past disappointment. Am over it already. I just wanted to do a quick post on some of my adventures of the last week...as in during the week.

On Wednesday 9th Sept, I took a trip down to Piccadilly Circus and to the Japan Centre. I was extremely excited and nervous for some reason. I was afraid that I'd feel a little out of place and that everything would be in Japanese. D'oh! It was not as I expected.

I first browsed the ground floor which consisted of food and homewares. There I was able to get my sushi supplies like Seaweed Sheets, Rice, Wasabi and Rice Vinegar/ Seasoning for Sushi. I also bought some Jasmine tea bags, a bamboo mat for rolling the sushi and a tea cup. I did consider purchasing a good Japanese knife as there were really good ones there for about £6.99 but decided against it for that day and planned to buy it on another trip I would make there.

I then browsed on the basement floor which was the book section, filled with Magazines, Books and Japanese artefacts for sale. There was even a pair of 'geisha slippers' made of wood, for sale (sorry, I forgot the special name given to this type of shoe). I wanted a sushi book to give me some more ideas and inspiration for fillings, techniques and different types of sushi. (I will edit this post to include photos and links another day when I have photographed things!) I found one...I also wanted a good beginners Japanese book in addition to the one I already have and I found the staff to be very helpful and friendly and I eventually settled on a Textbook/CD combo called 'Japanese for Busy People' and is a romanised version so that the Japanese words are written phonetically to aid pronunciation. Fantastic! This will keep me occupied as I no longer have any studying to do (in the near future!)

SO I'm definately going to go back pretty soon...well when I can afford to!

I then walked from Piccadilly Circus to Leicester Square Tube Station and to a second hand bookshop on Charing Cross Road where I remembered purchasing a second hand 1800 book for Leo's birthday nearly 2 years ago.

(Such a big deal was made of this book at the time; I merely thought it was pretty and that it would be well received...which it was. It was an interesting find. However, as I hadn't really been "dating" Leo for long, this present was supposedly too thoughtful and an indication of my undying love and devotion to him forever...

*rolls eyes*

G.O.Y.** It only cost me £6! Pah!)

I love the antiquarian bookshops there and love a good bargain so ended up buying two books for £4, both of which are related to African History/ Slavery. Very interesting reading and I'll ALSO be going back there pretty soon to browse for a bit longer (by this point, the sushi rice was weighing me down a bit and it was BOILING hot on the underground)

On the walk from Piccadilly Circus to Leicester Square, I came across NUMEROUS Croatian football fans in their shirts all singing and chanting and generally looking very excited about what I now learn is the England-Croatia match which took place on that day! At the time I can remember being a little worried about the chanting and wondering what the crowds were protesting about!

All in all it was a good day and I think I will be taking a little walk and browse there after payday, which is next week!

SO that is all dear readers, I felt compelled to write this down, just in case I forgot because I really had an enjoyable day that day and made up some avocado, cucumber and red pepper sushi rolls that very evening...yumm!

Surprisingly, despite the fact that this is a long-ish post, it did not take me very long to write but I shall stop for now as I am growing increasingly weary and I have to wake up early for work in the morning...

Good Night all!

CBC

xx



** G.O.Y. = GET OVER YOURSELF!!
(It wasn't my fault that I was a good present buyer...)

Wednesday, 9 September 2009

Spotted Richard?

Inspired by the Wright Stuff, one of my sources of early morning post inspiration, I am a little surprised to hear that the name of the famous 'Spotted Dick' dessert/pudding has been changed to 'Spotted Richard' to spare the blushes of waiting staff in the canteen of Flintshire County Council, North Wales.

A spokesman said,

"This was not a policy decision. Canteen staff simply acted as they thought best to put an end to unwelcome and childish comments - albeit from a very small number of customers."

Yawn! Grin and bear it...how old are they? 12? I understand that this may have made some more reserved conservative members of staff feel uncomfortable but then again why not see the funny side? Seems PC and prudishness are going absolutely bonkers!

Take a joke...albeit a slightly rude one! Have these people never watched a 'Carry On' film?

You can read the story here

CBC

xx

Tuesday, 8 September 2009

The fat lady has begun her sweet song...

So today was my Professional Conduct Exam blogwatchers. 1 and a half hours of sheer brain busting Conduct and Financial Services related trivia. I'm glad it's over now. I know it is probably minor in the grand scheme of LPC things but it's the one exam in which things could either be hit or miss. So that's that...the examinations are over BUT the game is only just beginning. Now it's just a question of waiting for the results.

However, a most ironic thing occurred after said exam. I was having a 'thank goodness that exam is over' catch up drink with my old pal from university and after drinks on the way to the Tube station, my friend was having a quick cigarette and absent-mindedly dropped her butt on the ground.

*Cue jaws music *

Just her luck...the enviro squad and police were standing behind us and landed her with an on-the-spot fine of £50! Eeek! Poor thing...that's going to hurt her in the pocket department. The crazy thing is that she had been smoking earlier on in the day and had done the same thing but there was no one there to bust her. Damn and blast!

As law students and potential lawyers, we really really should know better!

Stay out of trouble kids...

CBC

xx

Wednesday, 2 September 2009

My first love...




























Just a selection of my books, not including any law textbooks, that are on my bookshelf! They're such great company, they never criticise or answer back...perfect companions really. The books are a mixture of presents I have been given, new purchases, proof (or ARCs according to a work colleague)/ damaged copies from work and library purchases for a few pence...
Happy reading!
CBC
xx
p.s. Guess how much I love to read!

Thursday, 27 August 2009

The 'Write' Stuff

For most of the morning, I have been distracted with thoughts (and searches for) of employment and in particular, that of writing as a career (or at least a supplementary one). Anyone who knows me in the flesh has probably had the extreme pleasure of hearing me harp on and on about wanting to 'write things' and getting really excited about it. After my final (one hopes) exam on the 8th of September, I will be taking the employment search to the enthusiastic stage, whereby I will be dressing in my semi-best and knocking on doors. I vow to be the most enthusiastic temporary coffee and tea maker, envelope stuffer and photocopier there is...

In addition to the above, I am going to seriously consider freelance writing, if only to find out if I really am cut out for it. Ever.

Onto the books...

CBC

p.s. As much as I think babies and children are sweet in appearance, watching Supernanny and Nanny 911 chill me to the bone.

Wednesday, 26 August 2009

Kids books to have happy endings?

I am watching the Wright Stuff this morning (as per usual) and am awaiting the next talking point which is about the fact that children's books should have happier endings. As a bookseller, this is of particular interest to me. According to former children's laureate, Anne Fine, modern books are too "bleak". I suppose that would be true if all children's books were like that but not all children are interested in fairies and bubbles and sunshine. I have had a few requests from little boys (at the bookshop) for war stories and action stories. This would suggest that there is in fact a market for this type of thing. Even the Harry Potter stories which are fantasy have an element of death, evil and suspense BUT on balance, a strong sense of friendship and morals. I just think whilst this is a valid opinion when you consider the numbers of books which feature "bleak" themes such as murder, suicide and violence, there is a danger of 'mollycoddling' or shielding children from the harsh reality that is life if you take these away. Obviously, these books are not being forced on the children and they are becoming interested and choosing to read these books. Even the classics aren't all that tame!

*Nannying alert*

I have to agree to an extent though, and say that I have been slightly alarmed by some of the newer titles coming onto to the market, but I would have to consider the individual child and judge whether I thought that they would be affected by what they read. If all children's books had happy endings, there would be a great disappointment to these children when they got old enough and realised that they'd been somewhat brainwashed and that bad things DO happen in the world.

You can read the article here...

CBC

xx

Tuesday, 25 August 2009

Text messages as evidence in French divorce

I'm watching 'Caribbean Food Made Easy' on catch up television and just reminiscing about good times/childhood in the Caribbean. Jerk up that chicken Mr Roots!

I also am reading yesterday evening's Evening Standard (which I was too tired to read on the train last night) and came across a very interesting little snippet on page 20. The article was entitled, ' Le text d'amour...messages of love that prove adultery'. It follows a ruling by the Supreme Court that text messages can now be used as evidence in a divorce in France. The article went on to say that the ruling would mean that it is easier for people to get a divorce as French people often had to wait for extended periods of time if they could not prove that their spouses were mistreating them. I don't profess to know anything about French law but this ruling sounds like it will be both a positive and both a negative. Negative in the sense that drunken, incoherent texts often float around and if the basis for a divorce is on these messages, then we all need to be on our best behaviour and not drink and text (as many of us, not mentioning any names, have done after a 'good' night out).

The article also stated that emails are also accepted as evidence in trials. It really didn't clarify whether this was just in France but if anyone who practices Family Law knows whether texts and emails are accepted as evidence in England and Wales, I'd love to hear about it.

Interestingly enough, the article ended with the following,

"The decision overturned a 2007 ruling by a Lyon court, which had declared that using phone exchanges in court was a breach of privacy."

As if airing your marital laundry in court wasn't breach of your ex partner's privacy enough. (sorry if that made NO grammatical sense whatsoever)

Obviously, I haven't been married (yet?) so will never really be able to fully understand what divorce must be like. Heck, I've never even been in love...and I digress...

Night all!

CBC

xx

Green Parrots/ Parakeets in London?

Hello blog watchers,

This is probably old news because I may have tweeted about this a few days ago but I have only just uploaded the photos onto my laptop. Here are the photos of the green parakeets which I saw in the tree behind my West London 'home'. I had no idea that they are supposedly now 'native' to England and have been breeding since an apparent escape from captivity, decades ago. You can read about the Green Parakeets as reported on the BBC News site in 2004.




Truth really is stranger than fiction! There were about 30 of them in that tree and by the time I managed to grab my camera, rush to the window and pap them, the battery ran out! The last photo is probably the clearest I could get from where I was.

Hmm...

Make the most of the good weather bloggers and readers!

CBC

xx


Thursday, 20 August 2009

Returning to the Code of Conduct

Yes dear blogwatchers,

I am going to have to get my head down and get studying for Professional Conduct, the exam which is on the 8th of September! More updates will be coming soon. I really have to get it right this time...

CBC

New Moon

I felt that I needed to comment on the Twilight Saga, which is currently taking the world by storm. Teenagers and adults alike flock to the bookshop daily carrying armfuls of the stuff, manic grins on their faces. I must admit that I too enjoyed the first instalment, Twilight, and read it in one sitting (give or take a few pages). However, on reading New Moon, which I still haven't read COMPLETELY, I was left feeling disappointed and uninspired. BUT, I do quite like Jacob.

The Twilight film, I did not enjoy. I didn't feel it lived up to the book. It may have been because when reading the book, I was able to imagine things that were not quite portrayed in the film. It may have also been because I watched it with my niece so wasn't really paying attention to it. The New Moon trailer though, looks AMAZING. So I will be watching that and hopefully it will inspire me to read the rest of the books...

CBC


p.s.You can watch the trailer below...if you desire. Keep an eye out for hunky Jacob!


The Twilight Saga - New Moon
The Twilight Saga - New Moon

p.p.s. I'm 23! *groan*

Tuesday, 18 August 2009

I think I'm turning Japanese...

For a while now, I have had an undescribable fascination with Japan, it's culture and people. I think it's because it's so different from my own Caribbean background. I'm sure I've posted about this before, but as I'm sat listening to my Japan CD, Japanese fiction in hand and my cupboard stocked with sushi rice and sushi nori seaweed sheets, I think it's about time that I come to terms with it.

I'm not sure where this stems from to be perfectly honest. I can't remember whether this started after I first tried sushi whilst at university or when I first read/watched 'Memoirs of a Geisha' by Golden. Whereever it started, it has further deepened since I began working at the bookshop, just over a year ago. I then began to have access to Japanese fiction and crime, which quickly worked to appease my thirst for knowledge about the culture, so far away from my own.

One of my dreams, amongst many, is to visit Japan and learn about the Geisha tradition and learn more about the food too. First, I'm going to have to get to grips with the language which has taken a bit of a back seat recently...meaning I am back to square one in terms of anything I may have learnt. Still, I can count to ten!

Ichi. Ni . San. Shi. Go. Roku. Shichi. Hachi. Kyuu. Juu.

I was going to post a video of the well-known song which inspired the title of this post but on realising the hidden meaning, I think I will refrain from it...

Currently though, I am reading Kitchen by Banana Yoshimoto and although it is a very short story, I haven't read enough of it to be able to comment on the book in enough detail. Needless to say, I am already enjoying it as it is the closest thing I will get to Japanese life at the moment! I should be reviewing it when I am done...which shouldn't be long now. It must be said: I love the fact that her name is Banana!

Everyone has something that they're 'into'. Find yours and get passionate about it!

CBC

x

Currently, I am listening to a song that sounds like a combination of Zouk, Soca, Pop and with Latin elements called 'Koza Renka' and is sung by Takashi Hirayasu. Love it! T'is a pity I'm not able to find an audio clip of it online.

On getting older

Tomorrow, I shall turn 23. Hip Hip Hooray, Whoop-di-doo...Birthdays are overrated anyway. I used to get excited by birthdays when I was younger, when presents and singing really mattered. Now, getting older fills me with a mixture of dread and excitement of what is to come.

So, we'll see what the new year will bring...preferably a job!

CBC

xx

Friday, 14 August 2009

A 'Good' Shake

I can't remember where I read this. It may have been in one of my favourite books, Little Women. I don't believe in corporal punishment (per se) but reading about someone administering a 'good shake' to a defiant child (and please don't think I'm condoning this especially with the controversies surrounding 'shaken baby syndrome') made me think about this. I'm using it as a substitute for the proverbial 'kick up the backside' and not to mean abuse.

I believe that sometimes everyone needs a 'kick up the backside' or a good firm shake by the shoulders. A wake up and smell the coffee kick. A 'get a grip' kick. A 'chin up' Scottie kick. A reality-check kick.

Recently, I've gotten these hypothetical 'kicks' when I check my bank balance or look at the BIG picture in relation to my life. One way or another though, we all get them. It keeps us grounded and makes us stronger.

Think that's enough philosophy for one day. I'm planning on macaroni and cheese and peri-peri wings for dinner so I'm going to roll my sleeves up and get cooking!

Om nom nom

CBC

xx

p.s. Bend over!

Thursday, 13 August 2009

I don't BELIEVE it...

...'Victor Meldrew' style. A MILLIONAIRE MP, Alan Duncan has the cheek to complain that he feels that MPs are "treated like shit" and are "forced to live on rations". At a time of financial hardship for a lot of people, this is hardly an appropriate comment to be making. Is it?

If he feels that his wealth isn't up to par (or his job not fulfilling its expectations), he is more than welcome to send some of it my way to pay off some of my tens of thousands of pounds of student debt. Not all of us have rich mummies and daddies or parents who care enough about their education to provide for us.

Cheeky so and so.

I don't believe it!

CBC

xx

p.s. AND exhale...

(Read the story here)

Wednesday, 12 August 2009

A tragic story set in Trinidad

Currently, I am reading The White Woman on the Green Bicycle a fabulously written story, set in Trinidad and with the dialogues (of the Trinidadians) written phonetically to represent the dialects of the island. When a British couple move to Trinidad in the 1950's, the husband, George Harwood immediately takes to the island life, whereas his wife Sabine initially struggles with the racial segregation and isolation. It is not until she accidentally stumbles upon a political gathering in which the future Prime Minister of Trinidad, Eric Williams, is delivering a speech, that she finds island life is becoming bearable. Over the decades, she writes him hundreds of letters in which she tells him about her hopes, fears and dissatisfaction with her marriage and life. She never sends the letters. They are her outlet. However, when her husband discovers her secret stash of letters, their lives take a turn which ends in tragedy.

One of the main things I liked about the book was the way in which the action over the decades, which started in 1956 and continued to present day, was split up and its order not chronological. This meant that you found out the tragic end nearer the beginning but were left wondering about the back story of the couple and their time in Trinidad, which made the book compelling reading.

I am currently on page 379 of 437 and although I don't want the story to end, I can't wait to continue reading!!

Homesick

I'm missing the Caribbean sunshine and my family.

*sigh*

One day CBC shall return!!

xx


**EDIT**

I haven't posted as much as I'd have liked recently because I'm feeling increasingly homesick. Missing St. Lucia and the way and pace of life over there. In short, I need a SODDING holiday!!

I hate wallowing and feeling sorry for myself. (I do annoyingly have the occasional lapse) Maybe this is my problem...not wanting to talk about my problems. My REAL problems and feelings. This is MY coping mechanism. It's not shutting anyone out. It's just that in my opinion, my problems are just that; my own and no one else's. There are times where I'll moan to my nearest and dearest, (or even on this blog) seeking reassurance and comfort. The majority of the time, I put on a 'brave face' and get on with it.

Am I unique? No. Everyone has their problems and different means of dealing with them which I respect.

I am not afraid or too proud to ask for help or to admit when I'm feeling a little down but I'll make no apologies for occasionally keeping 'schtum'.

It's no secret that I've been trying for some time to secure a legal job for some time with little success. It's no secret that I'm not particularly thrilled at this fact and that it gets me down from time to time. But it's something I have worked very hard for thus far and am not about to give it up. Obviously, I AM being realistic. I knew it was never going to be easy and that I was never going to jump straight into a £100k a year trainee role out of uni. BUT, I know MY capabilities and strengths and am tailoring my applications to suit.

I am just slightly frustrated (understatement of the year) at the whole process which I know a lot of graduates and prospective lawyers are also feeling...

The big question is whether it really WILL be worth the hassle in the end...

Monday, 10 August 2009

Leniency of judges

I don't think it will come as a surprise that there are those rulings which you look back on and ask yourself what the judge was thinking. However having 10 sentences increased on appeal for leniency is a little negligent don't you think? I thought there were sentencing guidelines in place to deal with this very thing. Understandably, the guidelines are just that; guidelines. But despite the fact that the differences in circumstances between each matter must be taken into consideration, they are there for a reason.

One judge, Crowther, "... handed a community rehabilitation order to a defendant convicted of gross indecency with a child. This was increased to 18 months in prison."

Rehabilitation order for gross indecency? Where is the deterrent? Or the punishment?

Though reading further, it seems that the JCO are trying to protect the decisions of the judges by saying,

"... sentences could be increased for several reasons and overturning the original decision did not necessarily reflect badly on a judge’s performance."

Fair enough. There IS truth in the statement...

Hmm

CBC

xx

Read the story here

On an aside...is it sod's law that the title of "most lenient judge" goes to a woman?

Double murder in Ipswich

A 15 year old girl and her 41 year old boyfriend (...yes 41) were arrested on suspicion of murder where two dead bodies were found in Ipswich. Very interesting to see what comes of this story and how it develops (if it does) and eventually goes to some form of trial. Early days I suppose.

Read the story here

CBC

xx

Monday, 3 August 2009

Catching the 'Golden Snitch' that is pupillage...

After reading Minx's post on her pupillage application woes, I have been left with a bitter taste in my mouth. How does a woman as qualified in many ways as this not have pupillage? It gives me the beginnings of an inferiority complex about my own application situation. I know only too well how competitive the profession is, even more so in the case of BVC students seeking pupillage. Though, I too went to the wrong university, didn't get the best A-Level grades and don't have a fraction of the experience or qualifications as Minx...

I think the recruiters need to pull their socks up Minx!

CBC

xx

p.s. It seems only wizardry to Potter standard can capture that Snitch!

Thursday, 30 July 2009

Are beggars entitled to be 'choosers'?

I am hungry. I have just spent the best part of 3 hours completing applications to meet tomorrow's deadline. I'm going to make this a quick post. Today, after visiting my GP and deciding that my new fridge looked too empty, I decided to do a little food shopping in my local area. While at the ATM, a little boy of about 6 or 7 approached me muttering something incomprehensible or so it seemed as I had my headphones on. I quickly retrieved my money from the machine and removed my headphones and asked him what he wanted.

He was begging.

I had an unopened can of Pringles in my bag, so I took this out and gave it to the boy. He thanked me and left. Seconds later, he returned with a lady now asking me for money. It was obvious that I HAD cash on my person as I was approached while I was withdrawing money. I told the lady that I had given the little boy a snack and that I had no change. They surrounded me holding out their hands, she pointing to her pregnant stomach.

They knew I was a soft touch.

I told them I'd purchase some food for them to eat if that was what they wanted.

"Bless you." She said, rubbing my upper arm and clasping her hands.

They then followed me across the road to a local bakery. I asked the lady what she wanted to eat. She said Mc Donalds. Mc Donalds was another 10-15 minute walk away and I had things to do. I replied that I would be buying something from the bakery. She wanted me to get change for her. I walked into the bakery and bought some pastries for them to eat. I took £3 out of the change I had and walked back out, handing this to the lady. She looked into her hand and looked back at me saying,

"What is this?" (Looking into her hand and then the bag)
"I want £3-£5 to buy food...this isn't enough..." (or words to this effect)
"These are cheese and onion pasties." I said. "Nice and hot."

I told her that I was sorry and that I am unemployed and this was all I could spare, especially as I had just bought them something to eat as well as given them change. While all this was going on, the little boy was circling me and pulling at my clothes saying, "Please, Please"

I firmly replied that this was all I could spare and walked away. They proceeded to follow me, still chanting, "Please Please". I again, firmly said,

"Please. I have given you what I can spare. I need some money to buy food for myself."

I walked away.

Later, I thought about this experience and how disgusted the lady was at the fact that I had ONLY given her £3 as well as bought food for her and her son AND given him a snack. I couldn't believe that she'd had the audacity to say that what I had given her was not enough, especially as the shoes I was wearing had holes in them and I had NO food in my fridge at home.

I understand that things are hard for everyone, but refuse to be made to feel bad because I could only spare £3...

I am hungry.

CBC

xx

Realisations

It's late and after updating Dite Kako and watching another riveting instalment from the Big Brother house, I now understand why I am drawn to Halfwit. He reminds me of Mr Literary...in many ways. Bah!!

I'm off to bed!

CBC

x

Wednesday, 29 July 2009

On Ladydresses

Title inspired by the lovely Jennie!

Good morning bloggers! I feel in a funny mood today. I'm not sure how to describe it. I guess it could be attributed partly to waking up early and feeling full of beans. OR, it could be that my mind is a-swimming with thoughts of the future. Hmm.

At the moment, I'm filled with desire for the new Gap A/W09 collection which I have seen advertised in Grazia AND I'd love to get a new pair of shoes...preferably Converse or Rocketdog (as my faithful Rocketdog of three years is practically falling apart but I refuse to throw it away!) I'd just love to go on a mini shopping excursion after I've had a good wadrobe clearance and gone to the charity shop!

I probably should not become complacent with this Conduct exam and start studying soon. As soon as I get the date for the exam that is!

I have a job application deadline in 2 days so I had better get form filling and such.

Toodle Pip!

CBC

xx

Tuesday, 28 July 2009

Tuesday musings

Hello dear readers,

well I have not posted in about a week because I have been busy doing overtime at the bookshop and sulking in a corner about my LPC results. I think I'm entitled a bit of a sulk and now the moment has passed, I am semi-fine. I had one exam result outstanding: my Conduct exam. Not exactly rocket science but as you probably would have seen from an earlier post, things didn't go well on the day. I wasn't expecting to pass with flying colours but to fail by 5 marks has really IRKED me. I'm already a YEAR late so what's a few more months I guess. UGH...

Last Thursday, I went to see Bruno at the Cineworld in Trocadero with my sister-friend who I've known since uni (but feels like forever). The film is funny in parts but its disgusting elements outweigh the comedy for me. I much preferred Borat as it was new and different. Bruno seemed very much similar in plot and structure. Disgraced foreign TV personality seeks new life in America, accompanied by trusty sidekick who he later falls out with AND is reunited with. Nonetheless, it was nice to catch up with T and have a laugh. She is also an LPC student and just got awarded a Distinction! Woot!

Later in the day, I went to S's Birthday food and drinkies which was full of fun and giggles.

Now I really need to get back into the applying and rejections NOW with added revision. What fun!

CBC

xx

Tuesday, 21 July 2009

"I don't think so Sonny-Jim"

If you watch Big Brother, then you'll 'get' the reference. As I imagine, not very many lawyers and academics would own up to watching the show. I do. I think I'm a little bit in love with 'Halfwit'. He's actually quite an intelligent, eloquent character. Watch his telling off of Noirin...




Funny chappie!

On another note, on reading the latest law reports on The Times Online, I found the one entitled, 'Guidance for juries when alcoholism is raised as a defence to murder' really interesting. I suppose there is a difference between an isolated drunken incident which resulted in a murder compared to that of a seasoned alcoholic. The report stated that,

"Their Lordships had concluded that the effect of the directions to the jury was that the defence of diminished responsibility would not be available if the jury found that any of the appellant’s drinking was voluntary. Save semantically, that was indistinguishable from the direction in
Wood and, for the same reasons, constituted a misdirection. "


This would suggest that where the drinking was an isolated incident and that the defendant was not alcohol dependant, the defence of diminished responsibility would not be applicable. The report also referred to this dependency as a disease or underlying 'condition' that the jury would need to consider and that the killing was an 'involuntary result of an irresistible craving for or compulsion to drink.'

So, the defendant in such an instance would need to firstly prove that some form of 'abnormality' of the mind existed and then whether there was a link between this abnormality and the 'disease' or illness. Because of experiences with alcohol (not personally, but close enough) I find it difficult to accept that alcoholism is in fact a 'disease' and that dependency on alcohol is a valid defence to a murder when to me it seems a self inflicted, voluntary 'condition'

Overall, some of the issues which are said to be likely to arise in similar cases are the following:

"(a) the extent and seriousness of the defendant’s dependency, if any, on alcohol,
(b) the extent to which his ability to control his drinking or to choose whether to drink or not, was reduced,
(c) whether he was capable of abstinence from alcohol, and if so,
(d) for how long, and,
(e) whether he was choosing for some particular reason to decide to get drunk or to drink even more than usual. "


and the jury would be invited to come to their own conclusions based on these factors. In my opinion: Alcohol an excuse?

I don't think so Sonny-Jim!

CBC

xx

Article/ Report taken from Times Online.

I'm now officially a 'twat'...or is that 'twit' ?

Thanks to Mr Charon QC, I am now officially a part of the Twitter nation. Yet another addiction to my ever growing list!

Luckily, it was payday yesterday so I may indulge in a little retail therapy (not ALL for myself- I/the house needs a new fridge!).

Tweet tweet

CBC

xx

Sunday, 19 July 2009

Giving life 'The Finger'

After a crazy (!) comment from one of my work colleagues ('wuv' him...) I got to thinking about this. Giving life the finger I mean. On the way home, there was an absolute N-U-T-T-E-R (sorry I'm not more PC) on the bus, making me lust after drivng lessons (or a lottery win) even more. He proceeded to throw batteries at a bemused couple sitting in front of him and then rolled around on the floor of the upper deck of the bus whilst speaking in tongues and laughing manically...A fellow and rather handsome passenger commented on the fact that the noises the man was making sounded like he was in a "Busta Rhymes" video...LOL

I seem to attract strangeness.

*COUGHLEOCOUGH*

Also, as I sit here in the dark typing this, I've noticed that my right ankle is quite swollen and puffy. But you know, I'm going to stick two fingers up to life and crazy things at the moment...

Giving it 'the finger'...so to speak.

I'm also quite excited about my other blog at the moment which is giving me an excuse to drink teas and other lovely drinks.

Let's see what tomorrow will throw at me

CBC

xx

Tuesday, 14 July 2009

What makes an 'undesirable' trainee candidate?

As my days are now almost entirely consumed by applications, trawling the web for vacancies and blogging, I am beginning to wonder whether in a firm's eyes there is such thing as an undesirable candidate for a training position and what that person would be like. It seems there are several categories/ qualities which firms are reluctant to budge on. I must just clarify that I am not generalising about firms but merely passing comment on what I have observed about the application process. Here are just a few observations:

Degree Classification and University
90% of Firms which I have come across either via the web or their hard-copy literature request an upper second class degree or above, regardless of discipline. There are a small percentange of firms which state that they 'require' a lower class degree or above and an equally low number of those which do not specify a degree class on their recruitment brochures etc. So on this evidence it seems that the likelihood of a student getting offered a training contract with anything less that a 2:1 is going to be based on a lot more than their degree result.

Legal Practice Course
I have also recently noticed that a large number of firms are now specifying 'Distinction' and 'Commendation' as well as the 2:1 or above. Fair enough.

Language Ability
A lot more firms are wanting fluency in a second language and I have even come across one or two which wanted fluency in several languages! In particular the international and multi-jurisdictional firms will place more importance on the fluency of candidates in different languages and this is not at all unreasonable given the nature of the firm. However, some smaller (medium) sized firms would love a candidate to be fluent in a second language also.

Legal Experience
This is interesting as the firms do not ALWAYS mention this but it is assumed that they'd all want some level of experience. The experience could range from vac schemes and pro bono work to part time employment and paralegalling. The experience requirement is not exclusive to law of course but it seems that it is vital to securing a training contract. The good thing I have noticed about some firms is that they clearly state that should there be a reason why the candidate did not achieve a high level of academia, if they have 'good' experience elsewhere, this may have a positive impact on their application.

SuperPowers
The often hidden category, the majority of firms expect a level of superpowers ranging from time travel, flight and invisibility to telepathy. No sarcasm whatsoever. In all seriousness it seems they would like prospective trainees to have something...special about them. Having interests outside of work are handy.

SO, back to the original question, an undesirable doesn't really exist...do they?

I don't expect firms to compromise on quality of candidates of course; that would be to their and their future clients' as well as the profession's detriment. I can't argue with that.

CBC

xx

Monday, 13 July 2009

Same excrement, different week...

Hello dear readers. After what seemed a crazy weekend at the bookshop, I am left feeling worn but looking forward to the week to come with all that it brings.

CBC

xx

P.s. You may notice some changes to the blog layout in the week to come; I'm giving CBC a little bit of a makeover...

Friday, 10 July 2009

The Inner Sanctum

So I realise that I haven't NOT posted a whiney, "Give me a training contract" post for a while...even subliminally (and yes for grammar nazis out there I realise I've used a double negative) But today dear readers, will be different. I am off on a fashion tangent today. I have been following Style Bubble's Blog for a couple of days now and already I am hooked. I've looked through all of her style diary outfits and her Style Bubble Daily wear blog and I can't wait to get shopping! Her style is as she describes, 'eclectic' and a little eccentric as described by others who follow her. I love the mish mash of colours, textures, brands, layers and creativity that she throws into each and every outfit that she wears. What an inspiration.

I'm a fashion novice and at the moment don't really consider myself to be fashionable or with the trends but recently I've found myself becoming more and more curious about clothes. I'm not about to go for a career change just yet folks, but it doesn't stop me from experimenting with fashiony things.
And yes, although I am sat here in shorts, trying not to aggravate the slow healing flare-up on my leg, I AM wearing feather earrrings and lipgloss...
I wonder how much individuality in attire is appreciated in the inner sanctum.

CBC
xx

Thursday, 9 July 2009

Boiling Cold

This is how I've felt yesterday. After shivering for hours and feeling hot and cold, I feel a little better but still achy. My eczema has flared up on both legs to the point where walking is pulling on and splitting my skin (sorry for the graphic detail) How on earth can I serve the lovely customers at the bookshop when I can barely walk? This will not do www. This will not do.

Well, I have the rest of today and tomorrow to recuperate...

To smilier days

CBC

xx

Edit: As I watch the Wright Stuff on Channel 5, he is asking the question, "Would you miss men if [they] we were gone?"

Hmm...Matthew, I'll get back to you on that one.

Friday, 3 July 2009

Employment Drought

So dear bloggers,

I am away for the weekend on a much needed break away from home which is driving me up the 'crazy' wall at the moment.

In the past week or so, I have taken a short break from the relentless job searching and applying purely to let my hair down a little but now I'm getting back in the saddle out of necessity. I went on an 'interview' last week which was an odd experience I won't detail too much on here. Needless to say, the firm in question was not prepared to pay me until a future date...

I am so close to screaming, it's choking me.

Till Monday

CBC

xx

Thursday, 2 July 2009

Ding dong merrily on high....t'is the month of Ju-ly

Happy July www. I've been away for a little while 'living it up' in the sun but now that I have been charged with several counts of GBH on my bank account I am holed up in my hot and humid bedroom without a window, drooling over items in the asos sale.

I'm not one to moan (much) and I love the sunshine, just not when it continuously causes sweat moustaches which one has to wipe away every other minute of two whilst holding one's nose to protect oneself from the lovely London commuters who forget that deodorant exists. (I have to stress that the majority are aware of soap, water and deodorant but the select few who do not are the culprits) That said, I love the summer; cold watermelon juice running down your arms while you sink your face into a slice. Sunglasses and flip flops slap-slapping against your soles. Long summer nights. Butterflies. Cool showers. Makeshift fans with bits of cardboard.
*sigh*

Last Friday, I attended the Wimbledon championships with my friend Politics Girl and what an experience that was. It was one of the most unbelievably amazing days. For starters to get grounds access resulted in this mammoth queue,










for approximately 7 hours or so. What a queue that was. That said though, it was a fun wait with so much going on around us and so many funny characters, like this guy who decided to give his friend a back massage.









Also, we met a greyhound rescued and homed by Wimbledon Greyhound Welfare and I managed to get an amazing close-up of him yawning! (Edit: I removed the photo for technical reasons)










All in all www, it was an amazing day. Here are a few other shots from the day.



















Stay safe in the sun!

CBC
xx

Sunday, 21 June 2009

Ooo, you are awful...but I like you

Good evening www. I'm sat in front of my laptop nursing sore feet after a long (ish) day at work and I just couldn't help but feel happy. Despite the fact that I am tired and can barely walk (seriously, I'm walking around my flat as though I'm walking on hot coals; my feet ache that much) I had to come into my blog to post and exclaim at how much I love my job sometimes. Yes, there are slightly over-enthusiastic customers who get a little emotional and rude about finding their books. On the whole though, the satisfaction they (and I) get from locating their book is amazing. Hyperbole? Perhaps. Yesterday a customer came into the shop looking for a phrasebook for her friend who was travelling to Europe and after having another colleague search for the book and then myself, I was near to telling the customer to try WHSmith (shock, horror!). Suddenly, as if by some sweet magic the book materialised right in front of us. Both myself and the customer shouted "Yay!" and started 'seal-clapping' and then giggled at how excited we got after locating the book. These moments www, are priceless...

On another note, I purchased (yet another book, I know) a book on Digital Photography today after spending my weekend in the basement; now it is affectionately known as the 'dungeon of knowledge'. So now after I get a few practice runs, taking photos of everything that can be photographed, I shall include some of my better photos in this blog. One photo which I particularly like is one I took earlier in the year from the 5th floor of a solicitor's firm I used to work in (It's the photo accompanying this post). It feels like a moody and mysterious photo and I feel particularly lucky to have captured one of the many beautiful sunsets in London. I can't wait to get papping!

I also got a book on Rumi after reading one of Daisy Goodwin's many collections of poems which referred to his poetry. I have yet to start it but can't wait. Currently, I am reading 'Out' by Natsuo Kirino after reading 'Grotesque' by the same author and it is truly gruesome...just the way I like it! I'm also reading 'I am a Cat' by Natsume Soseki and although very funny and insightful, it is very hard to follow at times and I am not sure whether this is because the book was translated from the Japanese. Regardless, I am determined to soldier through it!

Finally, I was shocked to read that the stig has been revealed (yet again?). According to the article, the stig was none other than...Michael Schumacher! Nooo! I think I liked Top Gear more when I didn't know who was under the helmet...but it does add a certaine 'je ne sais quoi' to things now!

Pfft, well I better get back under my duvet now.

Toodle pip.

CBC

xx

p.s. I love semi colons...

Friday, 19 June 2009

Are lawyers misunderstood creatures?

I was reading the Law section of Times Online today and came across this shocking article. Avert your eyes fellow law students and practitioners...

Why are Lawyers so Hated?

Read at your peril, particularly the comments.

Furthermore, in Criminal Law News the first trial without a jury for '400 years' is scheduled for July. This is because it was ruled by the Court of Appeal that the trial could be heard by the judges alone due to "jury nobbling". Apparently, this is the FOURTH trial scheduled to be heard with the previous three costing a total of £22 million and the previous trial collapsing due to "a serious attempt at jury tampering". So having a trial without jury in this case is found to be in the interests of justice. Hmm so many issues here....I don't even know where to begin. Costs? Why this 'nobbling' occurred in the first place?

Pfft.

And so I'd like to conclude with this beautiful song which I came across yesterday whilst watching videos on YouTube; it was playing in the background of someone's make-up tutorial. (I think it was Romaquillage)

For some reason, watching the video I get the feeling there is some underlying message involving domestic violence which you don't quite get when you merely listen to the track. Great all the same. I'm going to purchase the album on my next pay-day.



So, that's enough ranting and raving for one day, ne c'est pas?

CBC

xx

P.s. I've vowed to take and use my own photographs in this blog so I'll be looking forward to the commentary on my amateur photography.

Wednesday, 17 June 2009

Half-wits, Dog-faces and Digital Britain

I'm sorry www. Of late I have not quite been my curious self. But I'm slowly coming back. I promise...especially as there are so many interesting things going on in the world to blog about. As I type, I'm nursing a headache. One of those dull thudding headaches you get when you're thinking about whether you will get a training contract, book deal or lottery win or even a response to a job application or whether a hypothetical 'he' will call.. Yah. Those headaches...

Today I did indulge in some much (not) needed retail therapy as I really needed to get out of the house. This relentless rejection a la job applications is very hard going. I'm not giving up but at the same time, every 'Thank you for your time but sod off' email is disheartening. So that's why I've been a little AWOL www.

Big Brother. Why do I watch it? Every year without fail, I vow never to watch it and then on launch night I get sucked into watching these frankly, odd attention-seeking fame hungry nutters and can't stop. That's it. Summer's ruined. Hah. But seriously, what is the deal with the Halfwit and Dogface saga? I seem to have missed the part where Freddie and Sophie changed their names via deed poll...Hmm. And poor Shree. Shree Shree Shree. Unrequited love sucks eggs pal. I nearly gagged on last night or Monday night's highlight show where Shree put uncooked bacon into bread smeared with what looked like jam (it was probably ketchup) and served this up ceremoniously to his fellow housemates. Bless him. It has to be cooked dear...especially with the current SWINE FLU pandemic. I found that worryingly amusing. The uncooked bacon that is.

Another story (one of MANY) which interested me yesterday was the Digital Britain Report 'hoo-ha'. Might be good news for those who cannot afford broadband, which with the number of telesales people calling me on a nightly basis to change my 'providings to a better and cheaper service of providings than my current providings' is surprising. But also it will be a good thing to help stamp out illegal downloading and other such illegal activity. Broadband for everyone! You can read the report in its entirety, should you so wish here.

Now, finally Mr Speaker or Michael Martin is leaving the House...not out of choice of course. However, this has not stopped the tributes from MPs pouring in and The Guardian online's Political Blog has given an almost blow-by-blow commentary of the goings on today. Tissues anyone? (No Freudians or puns intended)

What a pretty kitty (in my new oversized geeky sunglasses)

CBC

xx

Thursday, 11 June 2009

The Return

Hello www,

I've taken a bit of a break from blogging to do some thinking and sorting out of my life. This will be a short post (I hope). I lost contact with a really close friend of mine over a year ago despite several attempts to contact them. I can understand that everyone has hard times and struggles in their lives so may need head space. Likewise. However, am I wrong for feeling apprehensive to their reappearance?

Hmph

CBC

xx

p.s. this post has been edited.

Thursday, 4 June 2009

London

I had a lovely day strolling around London in the sun after my interview. Unfortunately, I did not get the job. Oh, well. Back to the drawing board I suppose.

CBC

xx

Wednesday, 3 June 2009

Tea Off!

Wow www, I am tired. After a long day spent 'leafleting', I am tired but energised. A three hour nap in the middle of the day is fantastic...

I just came across a news story which really got my juices bubbling. As you will have discovered from reading this blog, I do love me a cup of tea. So imagine my surprise to find that a Tetley Green Tea advert was banned from being shown for being 'misleading' after FOUR people complained that it appeared to suggest that drinking a cup of tea had the same of similar health benefits to exercising. A spokesman for the Advertising Standards Agency (ASA) said the following,

"While it did not imply the tea had the same or similar health benefits to exercise, it did imply that the tea had some general health benefits beyond hydration, in particular because it contained antioxidants. As we had not seen any evidence to demonstrate that green tea, or the antioxidants in it, had general health benefits we concluded that the ad was misleading. "

It seems a fair statement from the ASA but surely an educated person would know this? The ASA should be looking into those mascara adverts which suggest that by wearing a certain mascara, you'll get the 10 mile long lashes featured on the models in the ads. Only recently have I noticed that in the small print, the ads are telling consumers that the ad was 'filmed with lash inserts'. Before that, we were all misled as to the lengthening, volumising and false lash effect of many mascaras!

The above being said, I am not going to be one sided. It seems that the health benefits of green tea are not concrete and according to this Wikipedia article, have been long disputed and there are still many unproven claims as to its benefits.

Wonders never cease... in conclusion, it's JUST tea. Take a chill pill (instead)...





CBC

xx

P.s. Who ARE these four busybodies?

Tuesday, 2 June 2009

"A deep-seated attitudinal problem" (?)

Well hello there www. As you probably know, I was away for a few days swotting up for my Professional Conduct exam; my last exam. As the law of the sod would go, several things occurred during that exam to make me feel less confident about the outcome:
  • I got writer's cramp about 5 minutes in

  • It was an hour and a half exam and although visiting the ladies just before it started, I became desperate to go about 30 minutes from the end so thus lost 10 minutes

  • I had 2 minutes to do 14 marks' worth of multiple choice questions

  • I ran out of time and bullet-pointed 2 whole questions (just about)

  • There were two questions which I could not identify the issues which were being tested UNTIL THE END (see the previous point)

So after feeling relatively confident prior to the exam as I had prepared, read over everything, practised questions, walked around my house talking to MYSELF about 'Regulated activities' and s.327 FSMA and Scope Rule compliance...it all went (for lack of a better word) "teets up".


Pah.


So last night, after watching another exhilarating episode of Eastenders (I was not being sarcastic...much) I caught an episode of Panorama, entitled 'A Very Dangerous Doctor' about paediatrician David Southall. I had not been aware of this story prior to this but it really caught my attention. Evidently, Southall had used secret filming of his patients and managed to uncover a ridiculous number of cases of child abuse. Now of course in learning about Family Law, you become familiar with the concept that the safety/ best interests of the child are of paramount importance etc (Apologies if my wording is a bit off; I haven't looked through my family law things for about a year...)


So why were so many people up in arms about the findings of Southall's research? Perhaps it's because several people have been accused of child abuse due to the findings of it? But in my head, all I can think about is the fact that children are possibly being abused and that this research/ surveillance may save a few children from this. Sadly for their parents though, it may mean false accusations of abuse.


Where is the balance?


Now, in reading a follow up article (because CBC likes to do her research) Southall has been described as having 'a deep-seated attitudinal problem' by a disciplinary panel. It seems a shame that the focus is now on his personality than the issue in hand; the safety of the children. However, I am not looking at this through 'rose tinted' glasses and ignoring the fact the he may have had an agenda which had nothing to do with the children and more to do with a 'power trip'.


As the judge ruling that the decision to strike him off was justified said,


"He was speculating on non-medical matters in an offensive manner entirely inconsistent with the status of an independent expert."


But what about this M√ľnchausen's syndrome? The article describes it as, "... a condition which means parents deliberately induce or fabricate illnesses in their children to get attention for themselves."


Are Southall's accusations justified in some way? Obviously every case is different but isn't it better to be safe than sorry?


Interesting stuff. So many questions...so few right answers.


*sigh* I love the law



CBC


xx

(p.s I really need to discover once and for all the issue regarding copyright and images in this blog. Although there are links to all the photos and otherwise I have obtained permission from folks for certain cartoons, I am still a little concerned. All in good time.)

Tuesday, 26 May 2009

Escaping from the Code (of Conduct)...

...for a few minutes to read from my book of legal quotations, entitled 'The Law is a Ass' by Ronald Irving, I will leave you, dear www, with the following:

"The good lawyer is not the man who has an eye to every side and angle of contingency, and qualifies all his qualifications, but who throws himself on your part so heartily, that he can get you out of a scrape."

Ralph Waldo Emerson (1803-82),
The Conduct of Life (1860)

Well that made me blush a little folks...

CBC

xx

Edit: Thanks to Charon QC for the mention!

Monday, 25 May 2009

Fatebook

Sometimes I truly despise facebook. In particular, my 'beef' is with the news feed when you log on so you see what everyone on your list has been up to; photos included. So casually CBC logs onto her facebook to see Mr Lit. cavorting about with a mystery woman in a boat. Cannot say that I am surprised but I cannot understand why it took me so long to realise that Mr Lit was not interested...really and would eventually move on to pastures new. It has been nearly a year since 'lipgate' after all.

However, I am an excellent jumper of conclusions so I may have my facts wrong and this may be his sister or aunt Trish, though my instincts tell me otherwise.

Nonetheless, ta ta Monsieur Lit...too much time I have wasted thinking about you.

CBC

xx

P.s. funny how this sort of thing/ revelation always occurs RIGHT BEFORE I have to take some form of examination. Is ignorance really bliss?

Thursday, 21 May 2009

The black pepper in my soup

Hello there www. As I sit supping a mug of 'cuppa soup' laced with black pepper, (I use this analogy to replace the cliched, "Cherry on the top" or "Butter on my bread") I'm feeling all 'philosophical' again. This post however, will not necessarily be of a philosophical nature ...

Today I ventured out to pay some bills and get some exam supplies (highlighters and tabs; a law student's essentials!) and ended up spending more than I had intended. Do I really need another dress? I bought ANOTHER dress today. Now all I need, apart from a training contract, house, husband (+ 2.456 children sans ASBOs) and debt free life is somewhere to wear this new dress. Hmph.


I am being naughty yet again and will have to apologise to Salem* but I am going to have to miss going out for pizza and frolics in favour of studying. I have not got a lot of materials to study from for Professional Conduct BUT that said, it really is a touch and go thing. I could either understand why I can't give legal advice to Mr X because of the REALLY OBVIOUS conflict of interests or confidentiality issue OR I'll miss the point completely and go off on a tangent talking about the FSA and Scope rules. SO, I really need to stop procrastinating and get studying!


* Salem Salem Salem. *sigh*. Salem is a lovely chappie with whom I worked (temporarily) in the bookshop over Xmas 08. He is...an enigma in the truest sense of the word. Hmm.


On a side note, Mr Literary who I have not seen since 'lip gate', has bought a new shirt. A floral shirt. He has professed his 'love' for his shirt on Facebook.


Now for some Japanese tea and late- night revision...


CBC


xx


p.s. I love parentheses...as much as I love the word itself.

Wednesday, 20 May 2009

Och...my internal Scot

I don't know whether it's to do with my surname, but I've always felt like there was a Scottish person inside of me, waiting to break out. I'm not alluding to some strange form of multiple personality disorder, I just sometimes think in different languages and dialects. Is that strange?

I just, after a period of revision of my Professional Conduct notes, got to thinking of affairs of the heart (again). No, I'm not about to start warbling on about Leo and his posh double- barrelled surname yet again; I was merely thinking back to a conversation I had with my friend Politics Girl (or PG for short) earlier during the week about the subject. Sometimes, I can't help but feel that relationships are so much more trouble than they are worth. I suppose maybe it's just that thus far I have been unlucky (or had a lucky escape depending on the way you look at it!) Though, I find myself harbouring that 'Disney-esque' view of love and life at times at other times I am a cynical cat lady without a cat. Pah!

Currently though, dear suitors, CBC is still holding a miniature torch for Mr Literary. Yes, she is. She also suspects that he is aware of this. Though she fears that irreparable damage hast already been done in this area.

But why - I imagine you ask. Why-est the torch CBC?

I wish I knew dear suitors and guests. I have never had a talent for falling for 'appropriate' gentlemen...so far.

For now anyway, the law is my other, better half!

CBC

xx

Bye Bye Mr Speaker

So long. Farewell. Auf Weidersen. Good bye...

Well I have just received a telephone call from a legal telephone advisory service (and provider of legal services and information to women) to which I had applied for an internship. I have been shortlisted for interview in two weeks.

Watch this space.

Excited? *frantic nodding*

CBC

xx

Tuesday, 19 May 2009

"Don't pee on my leg and tell me it's raining..."

...courtesy of Judge Judy during one of her verdicts. I do think this rather crude sounding phrase sums up how I feel about a lot of things; in other words, don't take me for a fool. Nuff said.

Had an interesting day yesterday helping a friend campaign at London Universities on behalf of a political party for the European elections. Surprisingly, I found myself really getting excited by politics of late. Hmm. I wonder whether a career as an MP is on the horizon...

*coughnewminicooperyippeecough*

"Mr Speaker, I beg to differ..."

Poor Mr Speaker...he couldn't even read his own statement without stumbling over his words. I'm not surprised with all the heckling going on round him.

Just for information, the party is called Libertas and is a relatively new party working towards a democratic, accountable and transparent Europe and you can find more information about the party here. Don't forget to register to vote on June 4th!

Now to commence revising for Professional Conduct on June 1st!

CBC

xx

Friday, 15 May 2009

13 years today

...it only feels like yesterday and I love you no less.

CBC

xx

Thursday, 14 May 2009

Chain Emails

Today, I received a chain email about Baby Herbal Soup supposedly eaten in Canton, made from aborted foetuses and chicken. The email contained several large photographs of a 'baby' being prepared for this soup. I apologise for the gruesome nature of this post. I will NOT be posting these images or links to the images on this blog (view them at your own risk) *spits* However, the 'rationale' behind the preparation of this soup is that it allegedly improves 'health and sexual performance'. *spits*

Now I do not deny that somewhat 'strange' practices exist around the world; it's what makes the world go round. BUT, I refuse to circulate these emails with the message that, if you like eating Oriental food be careful as it may contain human meat. How offensive. Slander? Hmm. I don't buy it.

Maybe I'm a party pooper, but I've never really been into the whole 'chain email' phenomena. I've always been a sceptic...just as I am of this story. I am also glad that Ethical Martini has set the record straight or submitted the possibility that this might be a hoax. Not.That.Gullible...NEXT!

CBC

xx

p.s. Apologies for the spitting. And be careful of clicking on the links (particularly CharonBoat) in Ethical Martini's report; you just don't know what will pop up. You have been warned!

Wednesday, 13 May 2009

Time

Time seems to be a big issue to and with me the older I get. Remember those early years when you'd play for hours in the dirt/sand with a stick, running round and round in circles until you got dizzy or got called in for dinner? Now, it's just about how little 'time' we have to do the things we need to do from day to day. However, how much 'time' do we actually waste? What constitutes a better use of time than another? This would then suggest that use of time is quite a subjective thing, so therefore what one person considers is a good use of time may not be to another.

Also, why is it that sometimes when you are ridiculously busy time seems to fly and then at other times when you are just as busy, it doesn't? Interesting phenomenon.

I don't know why I feel so philosophical today...

CBC

xx

Thursday, 7 May 2009

On the up!

It seems my positivity is paying off a bit www as I have had quite an interesting day today. Firstly, I have passed my re-take LPC exams...HURRAH! That just leaves me with Professional Conduct and Financial Services to sit on June 1st! Also, my exam results spurring me on, I have made ...wait for it...12 applications and enquiries for legal jobs today and have a whole long list more to do tomorrow! Surely one of these must reply...right? AND, I have a day of girly catching up to look forward to with T tomorrow. All in all a successful day me thinks!

Purr

CBC

xx

Wednesday, 6 May 2009

Light bulbs being phased out

Am I missing something here? I heard this story on the news a few days ago and was not so much incensed (as that would be too strong a word in this case) as amused. Still, anything which will have a positive impact on the environment can't be a bad thing but it does pose some practical problems. Like one antique shop owner being interviewed on the news alluded to, what is going to happen to those appliances which use 'old' bulbs and cannot accommodate all types of light bulb? Some experts even commented that 'so-called' energy efficient bulbs emit a certain level of mercury if broken by accident so are dangerous to an extent. This is NOT of course, a 'new' issue as you will see from the link to the article talking about the dangers of environmentally friendly, energy efficient bulbs.

Some dark times ahead it seems. Candles are cheap these days.

CBC

xx

Love, Actually...

So after having a cosy evening (alone) watching 'Love Actually' for the first time (sensing audible gasps here. Yes, it's the first time) on ITV2, I haven't been able to go to sleep so here I am bloggity blogging. I did cry a little at the end; I'm getting less embarrassed at this now!

There is a story in the media which has captured my interest over the past few days and I meant to blog about it yesterday but hey, no time like the present.

Pregnant Briton Samantha Orobator faces death penalty in Laos http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/news/uk/crime/article6220226.ece

There are just so many 'annoying' (for lack of a better, less explicit word) issues I can see arising from this case:


  • The refusal of legal representation
  • The fact that she is reported to be five months pregnant BUT has been in prison for eight months
  • The severity of her proposed punishment; death
  • The question as to the 'fairness' of the impending trial
  • Her 'treatment' in prison
I suppose the main overriding issue here is that of human rights. I'm not sure whether it matters at this stage if she in fact was guilty of the offence she's been charged with. I think now it's gone beyond that. With Trisha Goddard in the background this morning, it got me thinking. Why is lie detection software not used in court? Or just generally...as normal as brushing one's teeth.

HER: "Does my bum look big in this darling?"

HIM: "No love. You look beautiful and I love you just the way you are."

HER: Well, let's just hook you up to the lie detector first dear..."

[BEEEEEEEEEEP]

Because it doesn't matter if the person on trial is actually guilty or not; it's their right to represent themselves in a positive light? Human Rights? It's all very mind- boggling to me.

Though, please don't misinterpret what I'm saying www. I am all for human rights and think that Orobator's reported treatment is disgusting to say the least. But I often cant help but think that things might be so much easier if criminals were just 'hooked up' to lie detectors.

"Did you steal that money?"
"Did you murder Mrs Bloggs?" (unfortunate name in the context)

Yes? No? Problem solved. NEXT!

However, it's the fact that the law isn't this black and white that gets me all...hot under the collar (!)

Till next time,

CBC

xx

(I realise of course that the suggestion to use lie detectors in law is just plain crazy but...actually no buts...it IS crazy so apologies!)

Monday, 4 May 2009

Pride and Prejudice (and zombies too)

I haven't read Pride and Prejudice much to your incredulity www. No I have not. Yet I know about the existence of Mr Darcy *sigh*

(Does watching the film featuring Keira Knightley count?)

At work I've noticed there is now a zombies version! Zombies and Austen: A strange combination but one I'd quite like to 'give a go' so watch this space for a review.

http://www.waterstones.com/waterstonesweb/displayProductDetails.do?sku=6586481

But I sincerely hope that you have enjoyed the Bank holiday www, as much as I have; yet another day dreaming of a legal career whilst devouring copious amounts of tea and cake...


Onto another evening of feline curiosity...

CBC

xx

P.s. Happy Birthday Salem*!

Thursday, 30 April 2009

Oculolinctus: don't try this at home law-folk!

As I sit here in front of my laptop, shivering in my 'pyjamas', reading ' Foyles Further Philavery' for new words, I come across a few cracking words:

Oculolinctus - sexual arousal from licking one's partner's eyeball
I would advise any adventurous readers not to try this at home! I love the fact that there is actually a word for this, one of the strangest sexual practices I have ever heard of. (Not that I profess to know all there is to know about the frankly 'dodgy' sides of sex) Maybe this is some kind of upper class practice(?) It reeks of 'poshness'.

Eyes open or closed tonight dear?

Oggie/ Oggy - a slang term used in Cornwall for a pasty
As soon as I came across this word, that famous football chant came to mind. I really don't care much for football(sorry I'm more a cricket fan personally) and thus do not know what it means so I apologise in advance if it's offensive. So now "Oggy Oggy Oggy. Oye Oye Oye" becomes "Pasty Pasty Pasty, Oye Oye Oye" the chant of the hungry...

Moronolexicophobia - a fear of daft dictionaries
Like Collins'?

Hen-hussy - a man who meddles with women's affairs
I don't think I need comment on this one

Anemophobia - the fear of wind or drafts
Most of my journey's on public transport are filled with anemophobic moments. Confined spaces like the underground at the height of 'rush hour' in particular are what I'm referring to.

What an educational morning spent perusing FP, www. I'm off to continue skipping amongst the daisies and tarting up my CV...

Toodle pip

CBC

xx

Wednesday, 29 April 2009

Skipping amongst the daisies

Wotcha www? After an amazing weekend with my pals from the bookshop, I am still on that high today. That or the Red Bull I had earlier. Anyhoo, I was just catching up on my legal news and stumbled across this article.

Director disqualifications reaches record high by Michael Herman

"A record 1,252 company bosses were disqualified from acting as directors in the last financial year in a sign that the Government is toughening its stance towards individual business executives. The number of directors disqualified was up 9 per cent from 1,145 in the previous financial year, according to figures from the Insolvency Service. The average length of disqualification also reached a record level, rising 12 per cent to 6.5 years in 2008-09. Disqualification orders, which are made against directors of insolvent companies, ban individuals from serving as directors or taking part in the creation or promotion of a limited company for up to 15 years..."

Surprisingly, I am fascinated by this article as I have long shunned Business and Company Law as I did not understand it. Now I think I can appreciate it a bit better. The statistics from the article are staggering and are sure to put prospective directors off the post. If anything I think this will stamp out malpractice and ensure that shareholders aren't being exploited and their
investments protected.


"...Of the 1,252 directors barred last year, 203 were disqualified for 10 or more years. All are entered on a public registry that can be searched freely on the Insolvency Service’s website."

http://business.timesonline.co.uk/tol/business/law/article6186595.ece

Even more shocking was that the directors are listed on a public registry; named and shamed. I had to stifle a giggle at this one as it reminded me of the Sex Offenders Register.


(Not that this is a laughing matter however. I think I've definitely inherited the lawyer bug. You know that thing where you find yourself laughing at something so pedantic and trivial and absolutely UNFUNNY to most lay people but you and your learned friends will cackle at it? Yah.


Reminds me of a Property Law lecture in which Leo (I think) came out with a corker that tickles me to this day. The lecturer normally hands the register out before the start of the lecture and
then we'd sign the register and pass it on. However, during this lecture she had forgotten to hand it out. Some busy body in the crowd must have alerted her to this to which I think Leo said,

"Uh-Oh, we nearly had an 'UNregistered' situation here..."

Or words to that effect. The crowd was in stitches...the irony was that we were about to start studying UNREGISTERED LAND!

Ba dum dum pssh!!)

I wonder how long the directors' details will have to remain on this database for?

CBC

xx

P.s. Feel strangely happy today...(wait for it) FOR NO REASON!

(Cartoon from http://www.stus.com/)

Monday, 27 April 2009

Easy on the bacon sandwiches...

So apparently, swine flu is on the rampage. I must be honest and say that this has put me right off my bacon sandwich this morning. Whilst I suppose I should try to rationalise things and say that it is probably unlikely to have infected my bacon; for now I will watch this develop on the news.

Some say scaremongering...I don't know
http://www.timesonline.co.uk/tol/life_and_style/health/article6175993.ece

CBC

xx