Square eye for the legal guys
Everyone keeps on talking about how many lawyers decide to leave the profession, but like missing milk crates and supermarket trolleys, no-one seems to know where they end up.
Well, according to mounting anecdotal evidence, it appears they are hiding out in the cinema. Not up the back necking their partners or rolling jaffas down the aisle, but writing screenplays.
Okay, so what if gun Gold Coast criminal lawyer Chris Nyst still does the occasional court appearance — even if some have been for Pauline Hanson? With the success of his first foray into script writing — Getting Square — we all know where he’ll be off to when he hangs up the gavel.
Then there’s ex-big firm lawyer, Rick Kalowski, who quit practice to pen the screenplay for the next Aussie film to hit screens — The Honourable Wally Norman.
Prior to last month’s special advance premiere in Sydney, Kalowski said he “decided to stop being boring” and write the film with old university prankster partner Andrew Jones
Starring another legal eagle that flew the nest, TV funny guy Shaun Micallef, as well as SA premier Mike Rann, notorious of late for branding the profession as “clubby”, the flick traces the unlikely sequence of events arising from a meatworker being mistakenly nominated to run for Federal Parliament.
Big shoes to fill
When he officially took over from Daryl Williams as Federal Attorney-General last month, Philip Ruddock predictably crowed: “I’ve got big shoes to fill”.
Provided someone has managed to stop themselves from drifting off since, it might be noted that Ruddock selflessly increased the size of those boots recently during yet another address about national intelligence and security.
To kick things off he decided to have a wee dabble with political correctness by giving a brief mention to the traditional owners of the land upon which Canberra’s Rydges Lakeside Hotel now proudly stands.
“Firstly, may I acknowledge the traditional owners of the land we meet on — the Ngunnawal people — and pay my respect to their elders, both past and present,” he said.
Nothing wrong with that, so long as he’s consistent. Folklaw will therefore be keeping a curious ear out for further solemn morsels of recognition in speeches to come, if only to acquaint ourselves better with the spiritual landlords of 5-star hotels around the country.
It’s not often that Folklaw will put the boot in — especially whilst discussing the finer points of rugby — but ACT Law Society deserve the full Bakkies Botha treatment after deferring its annual dinner to accommodate the sacred World Cup.
The guild cites “competition” from the tournament as the reason, despite only a handful of matches being staged in Canberra. Many more are taking place in Sydney, and it therefore must have been due to some sort of miracle that last month’s NSW Dinner and AGM attracted so much interest.
With tweed fever gripping Australia, sources on hand at the gala event (the dinner, not the rugby, that is) were absolutely flabbergasted to report that no Mexican waves circled the Sheraton’s ballroom on the night. The uproars, controversially linked by some researchers to crowd boredom, have been a staple of the “yawnion” thus far.
Still in the nation’s capital and its Chief Justice, Terrence Higgins, appears to be experiencing difficulty controlling the behaviour of his adult son.
Gareth Higgins last month appeared in court — not to say G’day to dad — but instead to face charges of assaulting his father. To make matters worse, the 35-year old pleaded guilty to a similar offence earlier in the year and the latest allegations have surfaced during the term of a subsequent good-behaviour bond.
And in a further ironic twist, many will recall Higgins delivering a memorable and entertaining CLE address last May on courtroom etiquette and how best to behave when addressing a judge in court.