The secret diary of . . . Judge Raoul Neave
A weekly satirical column about the week's eventsSTEVE BRAUNIAS
OPINION: One finds one remains in hot water over this silly business about the poor man who drove over the Korean.
The gutter press was full of it this morning. It quite put me off my breakfast.
'Darling,' said the old girl, 'you haven't touched your boiled egg. Would you like me to cut your toast into soldiers?'
I put on a brave face, and said I wasn't hungry.
In fact I was famished by the time I stepped through the front door of my club.
Tuppy Glossop was in the games room, throwing a dwarf. 'Yowsa!', he cried, as the little fellow flew through a hoop.
He said, 'Want a turn? Try your luck with this one. Officially, he's a midget, not a dwarf; marvellously aerodynamic.'
'No thanks,' I said, and sank into a horsehair armchair.
'Why the long face?'
Tuppy never follows the news. He really has no idea what's going on in the world. Damned good MP, though.
He sank into the armchair next to mine while I told him all about the case of the Forsyth Barr senior analyst - a pillar of the community, a man with an impeccable character and spotless record, married, a parent, in the top tax bracket - who drove his Saab over a man who upset him.
I told him it wasn't a hit and run because spotless pillars don't do that.
Tuppy broke wind. 'Yowsa!' he cried. "Ah, the old slap on the wrist with a wet bus ticket," he snorted.
I began telling him about the rest of my judgment - that I'd criticised media interest in the case as 'vulgar and prurient' - when I realised he'd snored off.
I went into the dining room to chew it over, but ordered fish pie for my main and custard for dessert.
More letters to the editor from idiots demanding that I step down from the bench.
But who could blame Guy Hallwright, the real victim in this sad affair, from responding as he did when Sung Jin Kim banged his fists on the bonnet of Mr Hallwright's Saab?
He must have looked at Mr Kim and thought: this person eats dogs.
'Take no notice of them, old man,' advised Pongo Twistleton.
We met at the club bar; when I walked in, the room fell silent, and every pair of eyes gave me an accusing look.
But not Pongo. The man's a brick. Loyal as they come.
'I say,' he said, 'buy us a drink, will you? I'm a bit short.'
'So am I,' said a voice at my knee. I looked down at an empty glass being held up by the aerodynamic midget.
Went to work.
'As your honour pleases.'
'Yes, your honour.'
'No, your honour.'
'Three strikes full, your honour.'
Feeling much better.
Tuppy Glossop phoned this morning.
He said, 'We've had a vote.'
'The club executive. I'm sorry to tell you this, but you're banned from the club.'
'Your membership has been revoked. You're out.'
'Must dash,' he said, and hung up.
I felt like the victim of a hit and run.
- Taranaki Daily News
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