Listening to/reading/watching

  • Spooks, Heroes and Little Dorrit
  • The Ascent of Money
  • Fountains of Wayne, Dusty Springfield, Nickleback, Talking Heads

Cluster Map

Wednesday, February 28, 2007


Do you plan your blog? People who do amaze me, they say things like "Next Friday's post will be really interesting!" - if it's that interesting we'd like to know about it today please.

As you have probably guessed, this blog is a straightforward snap shot of whatever happens to be going on in my brain at the time. No malice aforethought. So sometimes it's sad, I hope sometimes it's funny and quite a lot of the time it's pretty dull. But it's me.

This morning the AB and I were eating breakfast and contemplating bunking off, school and work respectivley. It isn't something that we've ever done, but we like to talk about it and contemplate the possibility that one day we just might. After once again concluding that , me "no we have to go people are relying on us" AB rightly commented "well if you just want to take the safe route all your life that has to be your decision."

She is 10, how scary is my life going to be when she is 12 ?

Tuesday, February 27, 2007

Modern Marriage..

Actually being in the same county at the same time is one of the challenges of modern married life. I got back from London on Saturday lunchtime, TB left at 6 this morning and is in Cambridge until Thursday. We are far from alone in this I know, ships that pass in the night.

Although you can expect a warm welcome when you do get together, viz;

"What do you want first coffee or sex?"

"Well sex obviously, but put the kettle on first then it'll be boiled ready when we've finished."

Romance not dead yet then?

Monday, February 26, 2007

Nice things

Random nice things that happened to me today;

1. The lady who runs the cafe where I have my lunch asked me to join her book club.

2. The manager of my local branch of Principles immediatley swapped a pair of shoes bought from her which had broken for a new pair. And a £10 voucher to say sorry.

3. The boys in the team have been making me lots of cups of tea!

Oscars! and tv

Dame Helen won - hurrah and didn't she look fabulous! about showing the kids how it's done!

I have taken to watching Lewis on a Sunday evening, it's terribly soothing and given what awaits me on a Monday morning I feel the need to be soothed.

He's no Morse (*sigh*) but it is still fun, and Oxford looks so beautiful. I wonder how much the Malmaison paid for the major product placement in last night's episode though?

Sunday, February 25, 2007


There is a reason that the population of London is on average younger than the rest of the country. The reason being that Old Crock's like me can't stand the pace. And I do the city old lady style, with hotels and cabs, not tubes and sleeping on your mates floor.

But last week's general full on nature has left me looking and feeling like a complete wreck - it was as much as I could do to lie on the sofa yesterday afternoon watching videos! Sensible conversation was out of the question.

There must be a way of "London proofing" myself before the next time - which is a month away- but I'm too tired just know to work out what it might be!

Friday, February 23, 2007


The most surprising people can't read. I travelled a couple of hundred miles to a meeting this morning, with some potential clients, other lawyer potential clients who may want some consultancy.

Or not, because the first question was -

"Can you run our conveyancing team for us?"

Me " er no, because I don't do conveyancing, I'm a litigator, like it says in the profile I sent you."

Them "Oh well in that case we can't use you"

It was over in less than five minutes!

They just wasted four hours of my time and a £55 train fare because they couldn't read. I didn't scream or shout or anything!

On a happier note - I think I've just bought a house!

Wednesday, February 21, 2007

Hotel Badluck

Don't get me wrong I love this hotel, love it won't have a bad word said against it.

That said I'm not having much luck. First of all the shower control stopped working so I couldn't turn the shower off. That was fixed. Then the shower wouldn't drain fast enough and so the whole bathroom flooded. Then reception gave some random guy and electronic key that fitted my door - and I hadn't locked from the inside- so he walked in on me looking scary in my PJ's with mad working late hair. (it's frizzy and it stands on end more and more when I run my hands through it - you remember Crystal Tipps) poor bloke looked petrified!!

Tuesday, February 20, 2007


It's one of those working away nights, so I need to decide whether I ;

- start working now and just write the night off, in the hope that I might get a little bit of shopping in tomorrow afternoon?

- go for a swim and a steam at the gym now, then have some supper and start working later

- kick around the hotel room moping because none of my mates can meet up with me tonight

- spend the night on the phone to anyone and everyone who will talk to me

not looking good is it ?????

Middle aged overweight women should be banned from the ladies changing room at Market Sports, I have never seen so much fit, twenty something, cellulite free totty in my life. Me struck with envy - good grief yes!
And of course I worked - two programme outlines finished and sent in. Paper to write tomorrow, it would be brilliant to get it finished. So much for living it up - the Law Society Library beckons...

Monday, February 19, 2007


Went to see Dumb Waiter at the Trafalgar Studios earlier this evening - Harold Pinter apparently.

Not one of my best nights at the theatre - weird and metaphysical so obviously I didn't get it!

Lee Evans was fab, dear boy has enormous feet.

Big feet......big shoes.

Jason Isaacs -teeny tiny delicate little thing.

Sunday, February 18, 2007

Small World, Big Problem!

aka Small Brain even bigger problem.

When you give a paper at a European Academic conference it is generally as a "rapporteur" ie your paper answers a set of questions common to all the delegates rather than being on a topic of your own chosing.

My specialist area of law is weird in that there are no academics in the UK, no university department teaches it, and us poxy provincial practitioners basically learn it from our peers. To try to address the problem a bit we formed an association some years ago, and joined up with the European association to try and learn a bit more. In continental europe in contrast there are loads of university departments studying this area of law.

So every two years we trot along to the European conference and join in as best we can. And I'm giving a paper. *Long pregnant pause* - sweet forgiving Jesus what the Fuck have I got myself into!!!

For example ;
Q6. Which is in your opinion, the relationship between the new CAP rules and the WTO agreement on agriculture in general?

Not only do I not have an opinion on this point I don't understand it either !!! - and I only have until the 20 April, and then in September I'm going to get to Italy and make a complete prat of myself in front of the combined large legal brains of Europe!

Frobes have you got any of that weed left??????

Saturday, February 17, 2007


Unless you have a daughter aged between 6 and 14 you will have had no need to encounter the horror that is Claire's Accessories. More expensive plastic tat per square foot than any other retail outlet in the known universe and probably beyond.

I am being guilted into a trip to the town centre branch this afternoon because I am working away next week and must therefore compensate the AB by purchasing her body weight in hair bobbles and lip gloss. It's not fair, I don't want to go!

Will go and try diversionary tactics - they won't work, but it will make me feel less like a lamb to the slaughter.

Friday, February 16, 2007


Both Mutley and Gorilla seem to have issues with my earnings. So lets see if their assumptions are right. A little quiz for you chaps;


I'm looking for an annual figure before tax.

The following are hints to help you;

1. I get NO "package" with my employment, it's salary only, no car, no pension, no healthcare no nada.

2. The partnership pays me as salary just under 30% of the fees which I earn for them.

3. My current charging rate is £158 per hour. And my fees are based solely on hourly rate X hours worked. there is no added value for difficult cases , no question of taking any share of the winnings (that is completely illegal this is not the US) etc

Prize - Until I can think of something better winner gets a signed photo of the real me!

Thursday, February 15, 2007


If I look outside my office window there is a nice statute of Charlie Darwin in bronze outside his old school. He then went to my University (Edinburgh) to read medicene- got thrown out and ended up in Cambridge reading Divinity, so the scientific brain of the man was pretty much self taught.

Survival of the fitest - not "fit" in the personal fitness sense of the world, but those organisms most fitted to survive in the environment in which they find them selves living.

The organism most fitted for survival in a law firm is a robot with a filthy sense of humour who can bill ten hours a day without ever being bored, tired or distracted. Who never likes one client more than the others, never looks scruffy or appears in court as if they wished they were anywhere other than here! I fail on all counts - although I'm not sure this is admissible evidence in the evolution debate.

Wednesday, February 14, 2007

The Devil Wears Jaeger..

and sometimes Principles and M&S at a push.

But at the end of the day I am the boss, the gaffer, she who must be obeyed and I swear to God that if some of the admin staff in this office don't start doing what I tell them, when I tell them to do it there will be quite a lot of blood on the carpet. None of it mine.

Tuesday, February 13, 2007

Valentine's Day

Do you love it or loathe it dear reader?

I have for years been trying to get the TB to send my Valentine's Day flowers to work. This is so that our receptionist, who hates me, will think I've been up to no good. He won't do it and this year is the last chance - I'd send them myself but that's just sad.

Whoever came up with Valentine's Day was clearly a sadist - it's a minefield if you are in realtionship and an ego destroyer if you're not. And the card is never from the person that you hoped it would be from any way!

Chin up chicks - I love you if no one else does!

Monday, February 12, 2007

Channelling Spike...

You have seen Notting Hill?.......I'm turning into Spike, well insofar as a five foot six, 170lb , three quarters english, one quarter french woman can turn into a six foot two skinny Welshman...I'm turning into Spike. Although I haven't got his taste in underpants.

When did this come clear? Well I've mentioned the sound man at length - but dear Jesus he's pretty, I've never seen a six pack that perfect that close up! And as the taxi took a particularly sharp corner and his thighs were jammed against mine I found myself mouthing "Thank you God!"

It's Monday and It's Raining...

So situation back to normal then. The county having ground to a halt with annual "snow panic". It took me less time to drive home from Hammersmith than it took the TB to collect AB from school! The motor way was closed,the power lines came down, the cable tv packed in try to bear with me, this is what passes for excitement round our way. Having caused chaos the white stuff hung around for less than 24 hours before dissapearing again. But there are still cars, abandoned all over the place. Inviting a spot of freelance looting I'd say.

Sunday, February 11, 2007

Well I never did.

So David Cameron smoked drugs at which they mean DOPE and EVERYONE smoked dope at school. A prefect who is now a High Court Judge taught me how make a roach, and we all bought our stuff from a bloke who is now an emeritus professor of cancer research.

I'm sure the kiddies on the news desk did the same thing too.

It's called hypocrisy children do go and look it up.

Saturday, February 10, 2007

You can't make them love you!

We had our first "viewing" of the house today. It's not actually on the market yet but one agent had a couple on his books who were "very keen". WERE being the operative word, they were very keen until they saw it. They didn't like it, don't know why but that was the vibe. The house looks the bollocks, you can't ask anyone to spend the sort of money we are looking for and not have the place looking it's best. It looks great but it is what it is and, as with so much in life, you can't make them like you. It is all down to the chemistry babe, it's either there or it's not, and there was no chemistry.

So, now what, how do we market the would have been a miracle if it had sold on the first view I realised but some enthusiasm would have been a bonus. If only to calm the TB's nerves which are shot already by the whole process.

And Cinders sat by the fire ball for me. It's only 9.30 and I'm headed for my bed with yet another Lemsip. I am sure all of this paracetamol cannot be doing the lining of my stomach any good at all!! Hope everyone else is having a wonderful Valentiney time, without me!


The cabbie is selling a house in the same part of the country that I'm trying to buy one. So as we drove across London in the pouring rain, through the rush hour traffic, he was showing us pictures of the house on his mobile and ringing the estate agent to give him our details.

Multi-tasking taken to an insane degree I think.

I really enjoy working in London but it's lovely to be home - it will be really great when we live closer so that I can do my work and then come home.

Thursday, February 08, 2007

Wasted on me...

I still have the flu so yesterdays posh lunch was pretty much wasted on me.

Disastrously - shooting DVD today, made it through thanks to LOVELY LOVELY boys in the crew who cosseted me and made me lots of tea, and didn't moan when I coughed down the mike and right into their ears. And my spiffy mates who were contributors who were super stars. I think it will be all right -but my nose is red and peeling and I won't look a vision of flawless glamour! (as if)

New sound guy this time - wow what a nice body! Very impressive and he's 41 !! I say again wow - but in my present state of health equally wasted on me.

Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Lippy's Random Guide to London Restaurants Continued

I got taken to lunch at the Berkley Square Cafe today....and it isn't a cafe, it's a v posh restaurant where they put only half of your soup in the bowl and bring you the rest in a separate little jug!

You know it's VERY expensive because everything comes in VERY small portions - one of the reasons why ladies in Mayfair are so slim perhaps.

V nice soup, very nice mullett (what there was of it) good strong coffee and teeny tiny, but exquisite petit fours.

Don't ask me how much cos I didn't pay!

Tuesday, February 06, 2007

It's really happening

The House Doctor would be pround - we've de-personalised, de-cluttered and de-junked. The attic is full and the charity shop has enough stock to last it through to the next millenia.

Why do houses just "Silt up" as you live in them? The AB found 2 dozen tellytubbies videos that she hasn't looked at for at least 8 years under her bed!

So the house goes on the market next week, hope they take nice pictures.

Monday, February 05, 2007

Jesus Christ on A Bike!

Well your favourite lawyer may be hitting the press shortly as client has just insructed me to take on a major plc in a battle to the death.

So if I turn up in the News of the World remember to wave.

Sunday, February 04, 2007

The Social Scene....or not....

St Nigella of the Range Cooker once said something along the following lines " you can have a career and a family or a family and a social life but you can't have all three at the same time."

And of course she's right. Having tried extensive experiments over the last 10 years since giving birth I can completely confrim this. And it's not just a matter of time - although that is significant - it's more a matter of brain room, or what my techy friends call "band width" by the time the job, the house, the child and the husband are all organised there is no room to think about anyone else.

And a social life that works demands that you care about it. For example ; having failed to go to the prep school ball three years running I was quite upset when the chairwoman of the organising committee started to blank me. TB explained that she was offended by the fact that I clearly didn't give a rat's arse about something that occupied weeks of her time. I didn't go because I didn't want to go, I just hadn't remembered that it was on.

I have mates - mates that I work with, mates I go to dance classes with, but that's different it's not the party, dinner party, ball circuit.

But I do long for a boogie every now and again - so I am gutted that the Valentine's Ball to which me the TB and a bunch of my mates are going is THIS SATURDAY so there is not time to no longer look like a zitty werewolf..(see last post)

Saturday, February 03, 2007

Yellow eyes...

I look as if I've been in a fight, not had flu, my eyes are sunken and there are yellow blotches around them as if I've had bruises and they are going. If this is the sign of something worse than flu, then honestly, I don't want to know!!

I suppose on the bright side, my eyes may be blood shot but at least they don't glow in the dark.

Oh yeah and I have a face full of zits, and guess what, filming for the next DVD starts Thursday - bloody brilliant!

Friday, February 02, 2007


The perils of being ill;

Weight goes magically back on even when you don't eat anything - hidden calories in Benylin.

Everyone is in a vile mood

You have too much time to think about stuff - viz, gave friend unsought advice along the lines of "I think you are lovely, but about this particular, important, issue you are being an arse!" friend likely to never speak to me again. But I would have been very unhappy if they thought I agreed with what they are doing.

Fever Dreams...

When I dream, I dream sequentially, so that tonight's dream will follow on the narrative of last night's dream. So make it even more confusing, my sister quite often has the same dreams as me. Makes it difficult sometimes to be clear on what happened when I was awake and what only happened in my dreams.

In my dreams I'm always late, arriving at college a year after everyone else and having to catch up, sitting exams in subjects that I haven't studied, advising people on matters I know nothing about. And the domestic arrangements are always fraught - there is no room in the shared flat, I'm in a dodgy flat that comes with the job, the layout is weird and it connects to places that it shouldn't go, I'm arriving as everyone else is moving out.

Yes I know - arrested development!

Thursday, February 01, 2007

Feeling Worse

In retrospect staggering into work for 3 days probably wasn't the thing to do. On the other hand, I've done my bills, my desk is clear, and if I do drop dead today it will be with only minimum guilt!

Chilli broth and noodles for lunch if I live that long....

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A blog about being middle aged, in England in 2013