Friday, 14 September 2007


Once upon a time I saw a new client. He was an elderly gentleman, immaculately dressed and extraordinarily polite. He was, however, a little hard of hearing and I raised the level of my voice accordingly. Fifteen minutes into the appointment, he leaned forward and whispered “Now we have the formalities over, tell me about this revolution you’re a participant in.”

I was somewhat taken aback, but my brain moved into overdrive. Was this a KGB agent in front of me, perhaps looking to recruit, and does spying for Russia pay well and offer flexi time?

However, my idle speculation was cut dead by the next question as I struggled to stammer a response to the first. “How much do you charge for a public execution?”

I’m still not sure whether he was joking but it seemed he was suggesting that, whilst manning the barricades, I could perhaps secure the disposal of his wife in a slightly quicker way than the divorce court permits.

Needless to say I hastened to explain that the organisation I belonged to was Resolution and that he had clearly misheard the name. The guillotine plays no part in our
code of practice and instead he would find in me a solicitor looking to resolve matters without the need for acrimony. Maybe that wasn’t what he wanted or, as I prefer to think, my tactics worked superbly, for a few weeks later he and his wife were reconciled.

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