The interminable football season is officially over, thank God, and sporting minds are now focused on the world’s greatest game.
Yes, it’s cricket, but if you’re looking for the biggest event in the calendar, a fixture with a long history and more needle than the Glasgow derby, then you can forget the Ashes.
Tulkinghorn is, of course, referring to the annual Slaughter and May cricket match, when partners take on the might of the firm’s associates.
Last year, the partners lorded it over their younger colleagues, scraping a thrilling match on the last ball of the game. So did the associates land a blow for junior lawyers everywhere and win the day when they faced down the cream of the City’s legal talent last month? Er, no.
True, it was another close affair, but the frightening pace of Gavin Brown and the thunderous striking of batting superstar David Waterfield secured another victory for the senior chaps.
For the associates, Nick Gavin-Brown (perhaps inspired by his rival namesake) and Robin Innes both performed well despite the defeat.
Any sense of smugness among the partners was shortlived, however. Having edged the last two games, one partner told Tulkinghorn that the senior team was bracing itself for a royal drubbing next year. Here’s hoping.
Rhyme and reason
Remember our poetry story recently, when we marked the arrival of Carol Ann Duffy as the first female Poet Laureate by highlighting some gifted wordsmiths among the legal profession?
Well, it appears there were some inaccuracies buried among the outpouring of responses, details the more literary-minded readers were only too happy to put right:
“Dear Tulkinghorn,” wrote Benjamin Ross, an associate in Hogan & Hartson’s London office, “further to your article, I’d like to correct Paul Mountain’s statement that ‘Kafka was a lawyer’. Although Kafka studied to become a Doctor of Law and completed the necessary year of unpaid service as a law clerk, he, in fact, worked as an insurance clerk, a job he loathed. Conversely, Wallace Stevens did indeed work for an insurance company, but, in fact, as a lawyer rather than as a broker.”
Thanks for that, Benjamin. Although Tulkinghorn would have preferred it if your note had been in the form of a sonnet. Next time?
Read it and weep!!!
Staying with literature – of a kind – the competition for the most cringeworthy legal-related book title has gained a new entrant with the release of Mommy and Daddy Do It Pro Bono!
Okay, so there isn’t actually an exclamation mark in the title, but Tulkinghorn didn’t put it there. The PR did. However, even that calamity of punctuation excess is not as bad as the rest of the accompanying press release, which, straight-faced, describes this literary abomination as “a hip guide to teaching the next generation about how to give back”.
It offered to send Tulkinghorn a free copy of the book and then threatened, “we’ll follow up shortly to see what you think!”
Please, God, no.
There are only so many exclamation marks Tulkinghorn can take.
One of Tulkinghorn’s helpers was over at Ashurst the other day and happened to bump into the surprisingly athletic corporate partner Steven Fox, who revealed that his sport of choice is, er, darts.
“I’ve got a dart board in my office as a de-stress device,” Fox revealed, adding somewhat confusingly: “I’ve also got a headset for my phone.”
The reason? This Madonna-style accoutrement allows Fox to play darts while simultaneously talking on the phone – and presumably allows him to dance around the office singing without the tedium of holding a microphone.
It’s an image that prompted the hack to enquire whether Fox ever jazzed up his dart board with images of clients he wasn’t all that keen on?
“No,” the Eric Bristow wannabe replied, “but I have found my pic on there occasionally.”
Such is the life of a top sportsman.
A frosty reception
Southern firm Trethowans has a new managing partner. This in itself is cause for great rejoicing, of course, but the arrival of Simon Rhodes in the Trethowans top job has led to an almost street-party-sized outpouring of happiness throughout the firm’s Salisbury and Southampton offices.
Rhodes started in his new role last Monday. And the reason for the general delight? Simple. Rhodes, along with the whole management team, bought ice creams for the entire firm. Yes, he actually handed them out himself.
There were even treats for Trethowans staffers who weren’t there last Monday. These poor saps had their ice creams set aside for them, so that last Tuesday all Rhodes led to the Trethowans freezer.