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<< December 2005  | January 2006 |  February 2006 >>
Surprised more golf courses not sued

Somebody asked me the other day, if voice dictation software works, and I answered them by saying that although I do not use it extensively, and I have probably trained my system only for about 7 or 8 hours, that I generally dictated these blogs.  The system does make a few mistakes, but it's not many and there is also time in the day when your fingers get tired of typing!

One of my rare visits to a golf course recently convinced me that the only reason that many of them are not being sued more regularly is because we do not live in a litigious society.  I played at the Killarney golf course with a well-known attorney in the fourball in front of me, and with a Rosebank colleague playing with me.  At one of the holes that runs alongside the highway, where I would assume it's fairly predictable that a number of balls get hit into the highway every day, our Rosebank colleague smashed one straight into the M1 South highway.  It's not that he's a bad player, from what I could see, the attorney in front of us was far worse but when only a 15° or so deviation is going to result in the ball going into the highway and potentially ruining somebody's life with the obvious chance that may lead to an accident, it amazed me, that there aren't high fences alongside the highway.  In any event, it's a case in the making, and if you asked me, it's entirely foreseeable that this type of thing could happen and in the circumstances that golf clubs will be held to be negligent in not designing courses appropriately, or taking the necessary steps to avoid such a catastrophe.

Posted by Michael de Broglio on Tuesday 03-Jan-06   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  Comments
Road carnage
The media is full of reports about statistics being up, being down.  Well, in 1998 a little over 9000 people died on our roads in the year.  In 2004, over 12 200 died - so it would seem comparing one December to the next makes little sense when overall they continue to climb.  Its carnage out there.  On last years stats it means 35 people a day died - every single bloody day of the year.  And the media focus on a kidnapping here, a murder there.  People travel overseas and tell the most horrendous crime stories etc.  This countries biggest problem is not crime - it's the state of the roads.  Sort that out and you will not have to worry about how to revamp the Road Accident Fund!

Posted by Michael de Broglio on Thursday 05-Jan-06   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  Comments
TV isn't always easy
The RAF campaign which the JAA has been running, has led to many media appearances and interviews.  In every edition of our newsletter, we publish a request for attorneys, who wish to appear in the media, or rather are prepared to take the flak that goes with appearing and being quoted, to give us their details.  With not had one taker thus far and, given the way many interviews can proceed, it is probably not that surprising.  Attorneys are always very quick to come forward and criticise the appearance, or rather performance, of a colleague on television or radio, but most, in declining interviews are admitting that ii is often tough going.  I was on Morning Live this week on SABC 2 and although I personally have no problem, generally, with the media and accept it as part of the job, albeit unpaid, that I have taken on, it was nevertheless a good guide as to precisely what goes on.  I was called at approximately 3 p.m. the afternoon before and initially understood it was for a radio interview and it was only later, when they insisted that I go to the studio, that I realised it was for a television interview.  That of course requires you to get up extremely early to start with.  I was told that I be questioned about road safety and how that interrelated with the proposed Road Accident Fund Bill.  I arrive for the interview, had makeup applied for approximately 2 minutes and then was rushed through to the studio where, as one guest left the set, and an insert was being played, my microphone was plugged in, I was seated and told that I would be prepped during the next insert as to whatever questions were coming my way.  The next insert started playing, it was the wrong tape and we then proceeded immediately with my interview.  So, no discussion, you are live with an audience of 1 million.  The questions that the interviewer asks you are already typed up and on her autocue, and they don't really deviate from that, no matter what you say.  You have to try and get across what you want to say, and what you are prepared on, as in this case on the issue of road safety, in light of the questions that you are being asked not all of which, it must be said, necessarily make any sense - I would emphasise am not referring to this particular show - but rather to past experiences.  You are a guest, and you in the attorneys you represent, have to appreciate that you been invited in the first place and you're not there to either embarrass the host will correct them on the ridiculous types of questions one can be asked from time to time.  It's definitely a pressurised situation which requires extreme mental focus and I would liken the effort to appearing in court - and multiplying that by 10.  I wasn't questioned on road safety at all.....
Posted by Michael de Broglio on Sunday 08-Jan-06   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  Comments
I am updating my blog from Kruger Park this weekend.  It is still one of the best weekends away, and economical.  Having spent weeks and weeks in the park over the last 10 years I am an expert on it - and staying this weekend in Biyamati Camp which has just won, once again, the prize for the Best Bushveld camp in the park.  It amazes me that so many people visit Skukuza which is like a supermarket, although it does indeed have a nice supermarket, but it is way too busy to me and although not the same as staying in Parkhurst next to the park, it does not feel like the bush to me.  I find the bush allows me to think clearly and to relax - and if only the so called "Bosberaads" that everyone likes to hold were actually held in good spots such as Berg en Dal, they might actually achieve better results.  I cringe when I get told some or other organization is going to hold a bosberaad because as a hard worker within the profession, and a former Chairperson of 2 bodies I know well that Bosberaads don't get the lazy to work and if nothing else, the lazy try to find more things for those who already do hard work, to do.  That's hardly the point of course.  Funny the things that you think of on the banks of a river with a cold breeze.  I must be a little too committed to my profession.  Not really, I just guess I enjoy work as do many, and I enjoy being involved.  I am one of those who genuinely try to make a difference and do more than my fair share.  There are far too few like that and if you think the Ronald Bobroff's of this world are an example of the average committed attorney, you are very, very sadly mistaken.  There must be a maximum of 20 people I have come across, altogether, in 8 years and across 3 bodies that even do any work of any substance at all.  I don't mind to write it either, 20 may be generous.  The average attorneys seems to do very little at all for his or her profession and while they may well make great contributions in other fields, or even as parents, they need to realize their profession needs them a whole lot more than they think - and while I have written this so many times, I still await those calls one gets that say "Why didn't you guys..."  Why don't YOU.is the answer.  What I have discovered also is that 3G does not work here - which was the point of bringing a laptop.  I'll upload this on Monday
Posted by Michael de Broglio on Monday 16-Jan-06   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  Comments
Rude colleagues

It gets a bit irritating at times to deal with colleagues.  One firm with the initials CTH on their e-mails sent us one set of e-mails for all their staff - and when 22 mails came through to the same address wrote me a letter saying I was wasting their time, not doing the work I am paid for and asked for my seniors contact details so I presume I could be disciplined.

Its amazing how despite all we write some colleagues still don't know we don't get paid and we give of our time in return for insulting correspondence.  And of course, it goes without saying we got the e-mail addresses from the firm concerned.

Posted by Michael de Broglio on Wednesday 25-Jan-06   |  Permalink   |  0 Comments  Comments

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