Monday, 22 June 2009

Half time whistle

And so the referee blows his whistle, and the half way point has been reached. No point turning back now, because it would take just as long to do that as carry on, although the path ahead is littered with unknown obstacles, while I know that the road already traveled has been pretty smooth, nice scenic views, nice people met along the way, and level walking.

Which brings me to the point of my post. A year ago before I began the BVC I worried that I was a numbskull and would be laughed out of class on day one. I worried that I may not be up to the job, that the lessons would be too hard, the homework overwhelming, and the rest of the class pretensious and obnoxious twits.

With the exception of the latter, I have been proven wrong on every front. I have loved the course, relished the lessons (Hmm, maybe not relished!), enjoyed it all. I will be the first to admit that trying to get my head around Hearsay was never going to be easy, and still isn't, but nothing else has been so difficult that I felt out of my depth.

Enjoyable is the word for it. The teaching staff have been wonderful, the challenge has been manageable, and I feel that despite my fears I have done alright.

So as I approach a few weeks off, eight actually, and as I consider the amount of homework I have to get through, which admittedly is probably less than 1 days worth of BPP finest homework challenges, I am looking forward to the second half.

Criminal and Civil are pretty much dealt with now, and advocacy seems to be the biggie for next year, and of course the selectives we can choose, so I feel that the hardest part is probably behind me now, and even if it isn't, bring it on.

So to anyone beginning the BVC in September, you have nothing to fear, it is enjoyable if you put your mind to it, apply yourself and make the effort to study and do your homework.

Of course, maybe its just CofL that is enjoyable.

What struck me as funny yeterday on the underground was I chose CofL because I could get there with a direct connection on the tube. If I went to BPP I would have had to change lines. Blow me down if every bloody weekend TFL are doing engineering works and I need to change lines anyway. Now that is a Swizz


Thursday, 4 June 2009

Assessing the Assessments

OK, so you all know I have done the Legal Research nightmare. On balance, I think i did alright. I managed to find some stuff to write about in a knowledgeable way, and made it sound as if I knew what I was talking about. Added a few diagrams and pictures to illustrate my thoughts, created a rather snazzy pop-up section to illustrate the use of the Gents toilets after dark, and ended with a cartoon strip to illustrate my views on dogs.

And here is the clever bit, the part that I feel will make me stand out from the rest, the cartoon strip featured Snoopy. Blimey, I can hear the whoops and cheering from here. I know, I know, damn clever. Not being one to sabotage others attempts, but I did throw in some pretty clear suggestions to the rest of the class to feature Garfield, and he is a cat! Ha ha ha, that will fix 'em.
I have also done the Conference Assessment. Now this is a strange one. The theory is that as a barrister, you meet your guilty scumbag client 20 minutes before stepping into Court. You have the Prosecution papers and need to get your clients version of events so that you are clear about whats occurring when you try and persuade the Judge that your client is not as guilty as we all know they are.

So arriving at CofL, led into a room under exam conditions and given some papers concerning the case. Guilty sod has ram raided a bakery and stolen some pies and donuts, and was caught twenty minutes later by plod with crumbs around his mouth, and 2 jam donuts in his pocket.

I had one hour to read the papers, which was about 30 minutes too much, and wrote down some theories about my client, ready to question the guilty swine about his misdemeanors. (Spell check is quite clever isn't it)

Led to room where my client is sitting waiting. Not to put too fine a point on it, but what a fat lardy arse he was. He was sitting 4 feet away from the table. Well his body was, but his fat lardy stomach was resting on the table.
There is a defined procedure for what is allowed, not allowed, and what is critical to say to your client. Relax them, get them on side, trusting you, putty in your hands. Read carefully, because this will get you a pass when you do your assessment. Follow my words to the letter and you will be fine.

Hi mate, I am Swiss Tony, here to save your sorry fat arse from clink, so listen in and I will give you the run down, and tell you what to say to Judgeyboy. You wasn't there, can't drive and are on a diet. You were in McDonalds eating a Bigmac. Its a set up, and you don't even like pies.

He looked at me through little piggy eyes, and said 'Oh Swiss, when they told me that you would be representing me I knew I was safe.'

The twenty minutes passed in a blur. We discussed chips at length, pizzas and curry. We both like Mars Bars, and Coke. The time flew.

Never before have I had to represent such a nice guilty burglar before, so I enjoyed myself.

Now, I just need to wait for the results to come out, but I have a good feeling about these two assessments. Roll on next year where we have 10 more to do. They are fun, and I like them.