The work-life quiz: Monica Carss-Frisk

What was your first-ever job?
Waitressing at a restaurant near Waterloo. I got sacked within a week of being there for burning the toast.

What was your first-ever job

Waitressing at a restaurant near Waterloo. I got sacked within a week of being there for burning the toast.

What was your worst experience as a trainee
Dropping a sandwich full of mayonnaise on my pupil master’s [Barbara Dohmann QC] foot, thus ruining her exquisite patent-leather shoe.

Where’s the best place to go if you want to find out what’s really going on in the office
The Edgar Wallace in Essex Street.

What time do you usually leave the office
As early as possible, but rarely before 7pm.

What do you do at weekends
Walk my Jack Russells in Somerset.

What’s your favourite restaurant
My kitchen – with my husband doing the cooking.

If you weren’t a lawyer what would you have been
A writer or a waitress.

Who’s your hero and why
My grandfather, who was a lawyer in Sweden.

What’s the best thing about your job
Being able to dip into, and learn from, different worlds.

What’s the toughest thing about your job
That it’s almost always in your mind.

What’s your biggest work/career mistake and what did you learn from it
Arriving late for a trial in Maidstone County Court. Lesson learnt: take the early train, or being practical is almost as important as being a good lawyer.

What car do you drive
I don’t. But I’d like to have a Jaguar XK120.

What book are you currently reading
A Sentimental Education by Gustave Flaubert.

What’s on your iPod at the moment
Borodin’s String Quartets 1 & 2.

What’s your favourite children’s book
Elsa Beskow’s fairytales.

What’s the most exciting deal/case you’ve worked on and why
One of the cases I’m working on at the moment, as it involves important questions about the extent to which the Human Rights Act imposes positive duties on the police to protect life. Unfortunately, as it’s ongoing, I can’t talk about it.

If you were stranded on a desert island, what two luxury items would you take
A large bottle of Acqua di Parma and my favourite novel, Madame Bovary.

What’s the longest you’ve worked without sleep
Twenty-two hours, but only once.

If a movie was being made about your life, which actor would play you and why
Al Pacino, because he’s a fantastic actor and can play anyone.

Who would you least like to be stuck in a lift with
The editor of The Lawyer – who knows what information she might get out of me.

Name Monica Carss-Frisk QC
Position: Barrister
Firm: Blackstone Chambers
Lives: Somerset
Education: Kimito Svenska Samskola; University College London; University College, Oxford
Work history: 1985: Joined Blackstone Chambers (formerly known as 2 Hare Court) 2001: Appointed silk