For April Meeting

For April Meeting
Item 1.
Sub Judice
In law, Latin for "under judgment"
Pre Judgment
A disposition to show mercy
a leisurely walk (usually in some public place)
- To make something CLEAR or Clearer
the exhibiting of actions, impulses, or behaviour
that are stimulated by an internal process
Miscellaneous articles, especially
the equipment needed for a particular activity:
drills, saws, and other paraphernalia necessary for
home improvements
A large fire that is dangerously out of control
Late Middle English:
from Latin Clementina
Late Middle English:
from Latin perambulat
- 'walked about'
Mid 19th century: from
Italian, from Christian
Latin infernus (see
(incumbent on/upon) Necessary for (someone) as a Late Middle English (as a
duty or responsibility:
noun): from Anglo-Latin
‘the government realized that it was incumbent on incumbens, incumbent-,
them to act in this instance
from Latin incumbere 'lie
or lean on'
Literary: - The heavens or sky
Middle English: via Old
French from Latin
firmamentum, from
firmare 'fix, settle'.
The subject under discussion in the Town Hall Offices was the subject of sub judice and the two legal
people present wished to clarify that there was no legal infringement however the paraphernalia
which had been dumped in the offices prevented them from the necessary perambulation and so
they were unable to clarify the situation to those councillors present. Both looked up to the
firmament in despair as they felt it was their incumbent duty to clarify what to them was absolute
prejudice of behalf of certain party members and could sense the raging inferno that their particular
comments were likely to cause in the hands of the gentlemen of the press.
Get a dictionary and find a word that you do not know
Read the definition
Construct some sentences using the word correctly [believe it or not this web site
generates a random word from the dictionary + gives you a definition]
Definition: Having smooth or nearly smooth hair
The two girls dived into the pool and raced each other to the other end. Maggie won by at least 5
metres. Maggie & Julie had no swimming hats and they emerged from the pool looking quite
different. Maggie had her usual round of tightly knit natural curls whereas Julie looked even more
Leiotrichous than usual. Maggie joked often that Julie ironed her hair in the morning but after a
swim she had that sleek otter look that Julie said was her streamlining.
Imitate a favourite book.
My Favourite of all is ‘A Christmas Carol’ by Charles Dickens. I have never analysed his writing style
nor studied any of the great man’s books. I read this little book every year just before Christmas as it
reflects what the spirit of the season is about AND it gives me hope that the gates of Hell will not
prevail against the Christian message which being ‘Love Your God + Love your Neighbour’
Word Counts:
Reference Back
to the beginning
Marley was dead: to begin with. There is no doubt whatever about
that. The register of his burial was signed by the clergyman, the
clerk, the undertaker, and the chief mourner. Scrooge signed it.
And Scrooge's name was good upon 'Change, for anything he chose
to put his hand to. Old Marley was as dead as a door-nail.
Mind! I don't mean to say that I know, of my own knowledge, what
there is particularly dead about a door-nail. I might have been
inclined, myself, to regard a coffin-nail as the deadest piece of
ironmongery in the trade. But the wisdom of our ancestors is in
the simile; and my unhallowed hands shall not disturb it, or the
Country's done for. You will therefore permit me to repeat,
emphatically, that Marley was as dead as a door-nail.
Scrooge knew he was dead? Of course he did. How could it be
otherwise? Scrooge and he were partners for I don't know how
many years. Scrooge was his sole executor, his sole
administrator, his sole assign, his sole residuary legatee, his sole
friend, and sole mourner. And even Scrooge was not so dreadfully
cut up by the sad event, but that he was an excellent man of
business on the very day of the funeral, and solemnised it with
an undoubted bargain.
The mention of Marley's funeral brings me back to the point I
started from. There is no doubt that Marley was dead. This must
be distinctly understood, or nothing wonderful can come of the
story I am going to relate. If we were not perfectly convinced
that Hamlet's Father died before the play began, there would be
nothing more remarkable in his taking a stroll at night, in an
easterly wind, upon his own ramparts, than there would be in any
other middle-aged gentleman rashly turning out after dark in a
breezy spot -- say Saint Paul's Churchyard for instance -- literally
to astonish his son's weak mind.
Scrooge never painted out Old Marley's name. There it stood,
years afterwards, above the ware-house door: Scrooge and
Marley. The firm was known as Scrooge and Marley. Sometimes
people new to the business called Scrooge Scrooge, and
sometimes Marley, but he answered to both names. It was all the
same to him.
Other Notes
CD paints pictures
as he writes. This
tableau is a small
gathering around
the register, you
can picture each
one of the people
in the list taking
up the pen and
signing it. Plus
extra information
Scrooge was Chief
Mourner. CD takes
time out to amuse
with a jest about
door nails and
coffin nails
Indeed, reflection
Scrooge was his
ONLY mourner.
Clever mention of
a very well-known
Shakespeare Play
and an obvious
hint that this story
will have a Ghost
or two in it.
Oh! But he was a tight-fisted hand at the grindstone, Scrooge! a
squeezing, wrenching, grasping, scraping, clutching, covetous old
sinner! Hard and sharp as flint, from which no steel had ever
struck out generous fire; secret, and self-contained, and solitary
as an oyster. The cold within him froze his old features, nipped
his pointed nose, shrivelled his cheek, stiffened his gait; made
his eyes red, his thin lips blue; and spoke out shrewdly in his
grating voice. A frosty rime was on his head, and on his eyebrows,
and his wiry chin. He carried his own low temperature always
about with him; he iced his office in the dog-days; and didn't thaw
it one degree at Christmas.
External heat and cold had little influence on Scrooge. No warmth
could warm, no wintry weather chill him. No wind that blew was
bitterer than he, no falling snow was more intent upon its
purpose, no pelting rain less open to entreaty. Foul weather
didn't know where to have him. The heaviest rain, and snow, and
hail, and sleet, could boast of the advantage over him in only one
respect. They often came down handsomely, and Scrooge never
Nobody ever stopped him in the street to say, with gladsome
looks, ``My dear Scrooge, how are you. When will you come to
see me.'' No beggars implored him to bestow a trifle, no children
asked him what it was o'clock, no man or woman ever once in all
his life inquired the way to such and such a place, of Scrooge.
Even the blindmen's dogs appeared to know him; and when they
saw him coming on, would tug their owners into doorways and up
courts; and then would wag their tails as though they said, ``No
eye at all is better than an evil eye, dark master! ''
But what did Scrooge care! It was the very thing he liked. To edge
his way along the crowded paths of life, warning all human
sympathy to keep its distance, was what the knowing ones
call nuts to Scrooge.
Scrooge {only out
of his meanness}
provided a lasting
memorial for old
Some More picture
painting. Scrooge
is cold calculating
and indifferent to
everyone. He could
just have said this
– but instead he
paints this master
piece of view.
An addition to the
above – take things
everyone will know
and can picture
and say ‘This man
is like this’.
Paint again some
and then compare
when Scrooge is
More indifference
to others. Another
look at Scrooges
isolation from the
Some very short sentences
Lots of reflection – looks back often
Takes time out to Jest with his readers
Paints lots of pictures
Comparison to things that his readers will know well in order to illustrate a complex
point or two
Lots of repetition. Same meat different gravy
Can I write like Charles Dickens? I doubt it very much BUT I can illustrate the use of his style.
My Story – Mile End’s Other Staff Members
Busy! The Mile End Road, Buses, Taxis, Vans, Motorcycles, Bicycles & Cars. Quiet! Muffled
drone through treble glazed windows fighting the moving air of air conditioning. Night! Traffic
garaged and homed. Air Con off, Windows open. Not Busy. Not Noisy…. Silent as waking at 2am, no
birds to break the noiseless calm.
With Office hours over: the telephone exchange at Mile End breathed a sigh of relief after
such a busy day and individual calls clattered through at one every other minute. When the
temperature dropped, the wooden floor creaked as it adjusted to hold its well loaded weight. Much
as floorboards creek when old men answer frequent calls across the landing.
Post 6pm Alarm bells rang sometimes as normal abused kit gets alien occasional use. Red
urgent. Amber never do. Green Prompt Action. Busy! A tirade of Traffic Lights waiting for single
Technician traffic to reset or cure the angry bell clanging faults.
Frantic cure of the minor catastrophes. Feeling useful and a welcome break from the
humdrum work that scheduled overtime required. Quiet again. Distant Blues and Twos on The Mile
End Road heading to The London Hospital. From the height of a ladder: the view through a window
revealed the orange of the 24 hour rota van entering the car park. Strange how the vans were yellow
in the day….. ‘So dim am lights’ a chuckle at an own joke. Parking the van, unlocking the door,
climbing the stairs, walking through meter rooms. Bob would be there in 5 minutes.
Creak, Creak, Creak, Creak. That was quick. Less than a minute. Turn to face the darkness
from the small pool of light that ‘mon ami’ was centred in. The Creaking stopped. Back to face the
light. Creak, Creak, Creak, Creak. In the Dark, which was at the far wall like a pot of pitch,
shimmering with the heat given off by the equipment. I thought I saw an outline of someone. Bob!
Stop sodding about! The Quiet continued unabated.
Face the light. No. Quiet continues. Turn. Busy! Tap on shoulder. Swiftly Face the light to
see… No Bob. Scared now. In the murky, murmured, whispered quiet a door swung open. Creak,
Creak, Creak, Creak. Tension like waiting the final pull of a rotten tooth. Like holding your breath just
after the ’Sharp Scratch’ call. Tension like just before the plane safely lands and then blessed Relief
as the ‘sharp bump’ ends and safely down.
Hello Bob! How long have you stood there? Bob gave a ‘Sorry’ bewildered stare. What? Just
got here. All quiet? … Yes as the grave. A lot of alarms mind. That’s mainly why Bob has arrived here
and he flashed a quick knowing smile. When are you going to clear them? No worries, I love it here.
Nothing happens here. Just then it seemed as if every alarm in the place went off all at once
(although after the frantic exertion and a count up of the fault dockets there were only actually 5
alarms). Following this frantic traffic of two Technicians diving here and there quickly clearing Green
first, then Red and ignore Amber. Quiet ensued again! The staff went gratefully home.
FootNote: Mile End exchange was widely regarded as haunted. Many staff heard strange noises at
Night and felt as if they were NOT alone. Time Team type Investigations revealed that The Exchange
was built on the site of a Black Death burial pit. The carts would convey the victims to a Mile’s End
out of the City and dump the bodies in an open pit just off the main road. A mile out would protect
those remaining within the city walls from contracting the dread disease. The pit was the end placing
of many thousand bodies. Some of them were still unquiet, even after all that time and seemed to
like playing with people working on their own. MANY MILE END STAFF took the stories very seriously
and would not work singly in the building. Groups of staff having nothing untoward to ever report.
Some very short sentences
Lots of reflection – looks back often
Takes time out to Jest with his readers
Paints lots of pictures
Comparison to things that his readers will know well in order to
illustrate a complex point or two
Lots of repetition. Same meat different gravy
Highlighted in YELLOW
Highlighted in BLUE
Highlighted in Pink
Highlighted in GREY
Highlighted in GREEN
Highlighted In TEAL
I think that went pretty well.
Write in the style of ‘Lolita’
The story is quite disturbing. I am not happy about writing about sexual
fantasies or about the domination of another person so although the
book has a certain allure [and I will probably obtain a copy and read it] it
is not something I feel at all comfortable with writing about myself. I
find this type of exercise very difficult and am toying with writing about
a film I saw a year or so ago called ‘The boy in the striped pyjamas’
which is about the son of a Nazi concentration camp making friends with
one of it’s young Jewish inmates. This is slightly less disturbing than
Lolita. Anyone who feels the same as I do about this exercise then
please do something else that you are less uncomfortable with.
Dedicated to his Friend J.R.R. Tolkien, this masterpiece of satire has entertained and enlightened
millions of readers with its sly and ironic portrayal of human life from the vantage point of the
Demon SCREWTAPE. At once wildly comic and strikingly original, the correspondence of the worldly
wise old Devil to his nephew Wormwood shows C.s> Lewis at his darkest and most playful.
Chapter 31: The Other Side
"He had no faintest conception till that very hour of how they would look, and even doubted their
existence. But when he saw them he knew that he had always known them and realised what part
each one of them had played at many an hour in his life when he had supposed himself alone, so
that now he could say to them, one by one, not 'Who are you?' but 'So it was you all the time'" (173174).
How mistakenly now that all is lost you come whimpering to ask me whether the terms of
affection in which I address you meant nothing from the beginning. Far from it! Rest assured, my
love for you and your love for me are as like as two peas. I have always desired you, as you (pitiful
fool) desired me. The difference is that I am the stronger. I think they will give you to me now; or a
bit of you. Love you? Why, yes. As dainty a morsel as ever I grew fat on.
You have let a soul slip through your fingers. The howl of sharpened famine for that loss reechoes at this moment through all the levels of the Kingdom of Noise down to the very Throne itself.
It makes me mad to think of it. How well I know what happened at the instant when they snatched
him from you! There was a sudden clearing of his eyes (was there not?) as he saw you for the first
time, and recognised the part you had had in him and knew that you had it no longer. Just think (and
let it be the beginning of your agony) what he felt at that moment; as if a scab had fallen from an old
sore, as if he were emerging from a hideous, shell-like tetter, as if he shuffled off for good and all a
defiled, wet, clinging garment. By Hell, it is misery enough to see them in their mortal days taking off
dirtied and uncomfortable clothes and splashing in hot water and giving little grunts of pleasure stretching their eased limbs. What, then, of this final stripping, this complete cleansing? The more
one thinks about it, the worse it becomes. He got through so easily! No gradual misgivings, no
doctor's sentence, no nursing home, no operating theatre, no false hopes of life; sheer,
instantaneous liberation. One moment it seemed to be all our world; the scream of bombs, the fall
of houses, the stink and taste of high explosive on the lips and in the lungs, the feet burning with
weariness, the heart cold with horrors, the brain reeling, the legs aching; next moment all this was
gone, gone like a bad dream, never again to be of any account. Defeated, out-manouvred fool! Did
you mark how naturally - as if he'd been born for it - the earthborn vermin entered the new life?
How all his doubts became, in the twinkling of an eye, ridiculous? I know what the creature was
saying to itself! "Yes. Of course. It always was like this. All horrors have followed the same course,
getting worse and worse and forcing you into a kind of bottle-neck till, at the very moment when
you thought you must be crushed, behold! You were out of the narrows and all was suddenly well.
The extraction hurt more and more and then the tooth was out. The dream became a nightmare and
then you woke. You die and die and then you are beyond death. How could I ever have doubted it?
As he saw you, he also saw ‘Them’. I know how it was. You reeled back dizzy and blinded,
more hurt by them than he had ever been by bombs. The degradation of it! - That this thing of earth
and slime could stand upright and converse with spirits before whom you, a spirit, could only cower.
Perhaps you had hoped that the awe and strangeness of it would dash his joy. But that is the cursed
thing; the gods are strange to mortal eyes, and yet they are not strange. He had no faintest
conception till that very hour of how they would look, and even doubted their existence. But when
he saw them he knew that he had always known them and realised what part each one of them had
played at many an hour in his life when he had supposed himself alone, so that now he could say to
them, one by one, not "Who are you?" but "So it was you all the time". All that they were and said at
this meeting woke memories. The dim consciousness of friends about him which had haunted his
solitudes from infancy was now at last explained; that central music in every pure experience which
had always just evaded memory was now at last recovered. Recognition made him free of their
company almost before the limbs of his corpse became quiet. Only you were left outside.
He saw not only ‘Them’; he saw Him. This animal, this thing begotten in a bed, could look on
Him. What is blinding, suffocating fire to you, is now cool light to him, is clarity itself, and wears the
form of a Man. You would like, if you could, to interpret the patient's prostration in the Presence, his
self-abhorrence and utter knowledge of his sins (yes, Wormwood, a clearer knowledge even than
yours) on the analogy of your own choking and paralysing sensations when you encounter the
deadly air that breathes from the heart of Heaven. But it's all nonsense. Pains he may still have to
encounter, but they embrace those pains. They would not barter them for any earthly pleasure. All
the delights of sense, or heart, or intellect, with which you could once have tempted him, even the
delights of virtue itself, now seem to him in comparison but as the half nauseous attractions of a
raddled harlot would seem to a man who hears that his true beloved whom he has loved all his life
and whom he had believed to be dead is alive and even now at his door. He is caught up into that
world where pain and pleasure take on transfinite values and all our arithmetic is dismayed. Once
more, the inexplicable meets us. Next to the curse of useless tempters like yourself the greatest
curse upon us is the failure of our Intelligence Department. If only we could find out what He is really
up to! Alas, alas, that knowledge, in itself so hateful and mawkish a thing, should yet be necessary
for Power! Sometimes I am almost in despair. All that sustains me is the conviction that our Realism,
our rejection (in the face of all temptations) of all silly nonsense and claptrap, must win in the end.
Meanwhile, I have you to settle with. Most truly do I sign myself
Your increasingly and ravenously …. affectionate uncle
So it’s a letter from a superior to a subordinate about how he is supposed to influence another to
commit crimes.
Get it right this time Eric
Now look here Eric (my favourite Team Leader 2012) this really is not good enough. As leader of the
Red sales team you are supposed to me motivating your team so that Blue and Green team’s ‘efforts
to sell’ pale into absolute insignificance to Reds BUT yet again this month what do we find? Red
team is languishing in 3rd place for the third month in a row and its only March so what is going on?
Bad things come in threes’ and that certainly is the case for Red team isn’t it?
You obviously need a bit of coaching otherwise your Team is just going to be in last place all year!
I have had my sources observing your meetings and interactions with your staff for the past week
and they have reported back to me some things which are obviously destroying your teams morale
and I personally find quite disturbing. I require you to look into these items and report back to me
progress that you are making in trying to improve your own personal performance.
1. It would appear that you have a very weird conception of sales success! It comes to my
attention that you proclaimed Julia as TOP sales person of the month with only two sales to
her credit. Praising someone for such low achievement is not really a good thing is it? You
would be better off going and banging a few heads together and bawling out some of your
lazier team members. Bernard for example sold absolutely nothing! Croydon claimed a sale
that didn’t actually happen. He according to you is your 2nd best salesperson. God help us!
AND VANESSA! For heaven’s sake yes she sold one item at 37% discount, at bloody cost! Kick
Ass and sort your expectations of the team out. Three months on the trot things like this
have happened, it’s messing my golf up now… I am NOT happy!
2. You have favourites. Managerial cardinal sin. You were taught in your training ‘No Blue eyed
boys’. Vanessa gets herself knocked up and you give her afternoons off for bloody pre natal
clinics. Julia has you wrapped round her little finger, popping out for team cakes every day
for 2 hours. Bernard… I don’t know where to start but when are you going to reprimand him
for being late in every morning for work? Seems the dynamic trio have a life of Riley. How is
my nephew Christopher and his sisters Pippa, Joanne and Rihanna ever going to develop and
good attitude when the favourites in your team are setting them such a wonderful example.
I put them in your team with you because you were our best sales team leader. Sort it out!
3. Your organisational skills are really naff. Good heavens you only have 8 people to organise.
An Octet, 4 pairs. How hard can it be? I thought my suggestion of pairing up Julia &
Christopher, Vanessa & Pippa, Bernard & Joanne plus Croydon & Rihanna was a sure fire
easy goal. What the heck is wrong with you? Dear oh dear oh dear oh dear. Good job you
don’t play golf. You would never cope with 4 balls and 18 holes. Motivate them. Make them
feel good about their jobs. Make them feel confident. Even you should be able to do it.
4. Lastly Praise. It’s not all about the big stick you know. When (and if) they ever get something
right make a big thing of telling all the team what they have achieved (no matter how small
in your teams case). AND when they get it wrong cut them some slack and tell them to get it
right next time.
You have one week to sort all this lot out otherwise start looking for another job. I have given you
fair warning. Sales Up or your down.
Plain Style of Writing
I have had a lot of problems with the main door of our flats recently and the land lord has not addressed the problems so it has played on my mind a bit.
Hence I wrote about it. According to Richard Lanham, the "three central values" of the plain style are "Clarity, Brevity, and Sincerity” I hope I nailed it.
The door is painted Black. It had no letter box and no glass in it. The lock is a standard Yale type. The
door is in the main street and all the seven flats use it to enter and leave the building. The key would
not open the door. The door had been hitting the floor for a month or so. When the key was turned
the barrel revolved, the lock cam mechanism revolved, the Lock stayed locked.
The Lock was removed from the door. The cam was turned by hand. The lock stayed locked.
The Lock was replaced with a new Lock.
The Door unlocked but still hit bottom and jammed.
The door was a heavy duty weighty item.
An idea came to me. Surform blade on the floor. Place under the part of the door that jammed, force
the door over the blade. The idea worked despite observers being scornful.
The door was fixed. £27 pounds. Now how much to charge the Landlord?
Because I Could Not Stop For Death, by Emily
A related POEM by Paul Hickman
Because I could not stop for Death,
He kindly stopped for me;
The carriage held but just ourselves
And Immortality.
I often wander with my dog,
To places that from home we see
I read Names and dates
On Masonry, in the cemetery.
We slowly drove, he knew no haste,
And I had put away
My labour, and my leisure too,
For his civility.
Daily wanders without haste,
we’re never late on a Lovely day
loitering at a favourite place
where Alice Annie and Charlotte stay
We passed the school where children played,
Their lessons scarcely done;
We passed the fields of gazing grain,
We passed the setting sun.
New Century & Christmas Eve bring woe
Alice Fowler bid Mum & Dad farewell
Remembering Annie nine years before,
Charlotte ‘feels’ the tolling bell
We paused before a house that seemed
A swelling of the ground;
The roof was scarcely visible.
The cornice but a mound.
Alexander & Mary Ann so sad
Christmas remembered thenceforth drear.
Cold and Numb with hearts so still
Dread of festive times ahead too near
Since then 'tis centuries but each
Feels shorter than the day
I first surmised the horses' heads
Were toward eternity.
Wander… wander… wander…
Spirits invisible magnetic circles draw
Visit Charlotte, Alice and Annie
Their Peace and tranquillity now secure?
“I ask them a Question?
Are you all alright now”
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