Volume 56 - July 2011
Legal cartoon, john fytit, Paul Brennan

Printed Friendly Version

This month

  • the New Lawyer reports that
  • 101 Reasons Blog is in the top 20.
  • Losing your job.
  • Speeches and offensive jokes.
  • How to deal with hecklers.


Facebook logo


Paul Brennan


Author of The Law is an Ass...Make Sure it Doesn't Bite Yours!


101 reasons to kill all the lawyers




How to be sacked

legal cartoon, recruiting poster, Paul BrennanYour new manager is aggressively making his mark. Staff leave - pushed by his new broom and are replaced by his own team of friends/relatives who take up newly labelled positions on inflated salaries.   

You find yourself having to ask him before you can do anything, nothing is good enough, he is terse with you and even raises his voice   – it is a bit like being married although your spouse is commendably less keen to get rid of you on some days. You hear his brother in law is in between opportunities and you fear the worst.

Ask yourself two questions :

  • Can you convince a more senior manager to save you? Normally, unless you are sleeping with one of them the answer is “No”, but it is worth a try.
  • Are you too honourable to employ underhand tactics? For instance, does he have any obvious weaknesses e.g. women or sex? Could an accident be arranged?

If the answer to 1. and 2. is “No” do not expect a last minute reprieve, prepare to leave.

As an ageing, but prickly employee, you decide to resign on principle. Here are three reasons not to make their day:

  • There is more money if you are asked to leave.
  • It is a lot easier to find another job when you are employed so play for time.
  • If you have signed a restraint clause they could interfere with you getting another job.

Defend yourself using the 4 D’s:

  • Document every slight.
  • Don’t let him quietly bully you.  Complain about him. Reply to his increasingly demanding and nasty emails by copying others on your reply.
  • Do not tell anyone that you want to leave.
  • Do rely on friends outside rather than inside the company for support.

This strategy is stressful but at least consider all the options before doing something rash and falling on your sword.

(c) Paul Brennan is a business and property lawyer on the Sunshine Coast, Queensland.  Both  "Deals and disputes".

Offensive jokes


How to make a funny legal presentation, paul brennan Warning: the content of this article could be offensive.  If you are easily offended, relatively sensitive or an Englishman, Irishman or a Scotshman go no further.  For those of you ready to be offended, in the pursuit of knowledge, read on.


It is difficult to tell a joke without worrying about offending someone.  For instance, I recently heard this on ABC radio:

the Greeks invented sex and the Romans introduced it to women.

I wanted to list all those who may be offended by this joke but I was concerned that even listing them may be seen as offensive by someone. It just about offends everyone. I was quite surprised that this was said on national radio.  Even where people in an audience are not offended themselves they may be embarrassed if they think that someone else may be offended. Some people take it upon themselves to decide what is appropriate and censor others.  As a lawyer, I would have advised against saying this on national radio but that does not mean that I do not find it funny.

So it is probably safer not to tell jokes.  But if you must tell a joke, make sure that they are sure fire by using the "Write-use tell" method:

  • Write new jokes down.  How often do you hear a joke and then forget it after a while.
  • Use it quickly to gauge if others find it funny.
  • Tell it a few times as this will help you to remember it.  Not only the words but also the timing of the joke.

The advantage with the joke about the Romans is that is it short and easy to learn.  In fact, it is so short it would be hard to mess up unless you start adding extra words or say it around the wrong way.

I have tested the Roman joke, it does get a laugh and I would use it, if I thought it was appropriate for a particular audience. I told it to one couple and they couldn’t stop laughing,  mind you he was Greek and she was Italian.

Extract from "How to Make a Funny Legal Presentation ....... and other things that they did not teach you at law school" a book by Paul Brennan to be released shortly.

(c) Paul Brennan 2011. All rights reserved. 

Being heckled

legal cartoon, inheritance, Paul BrennanBeing heckled during a legal presentation is unusual so I was surprised when I was heckled giving a speech on wills and estates. A mother-in-law ("MIL") took exception to my comments about daughter-in-laws (“DILs”).  She felt it important that the other mothers in the audience be told what a close relationship she had with her own DIL.  I thought that the other MILs in the audience would not wish to be outdone in the loving family stakes and I feared that any mention of MILs themselves may lead to open revolt.  It was off putting but it passed.

What do you do in that situation?

Well, comedians use put downs.  For instance, why don’t you take an example from your head and come to the point?  There will be a bus along any minute, be under it.  When you were born there was a huge mistake, you lived.

It happened again, a man had too much to drink and everyone wanted him to shut up. I heard myself saying “ I hear that you are getting divorced who is the lucky woman?”.  It went down pretty well, in fact very well with the rest of the audience, but I did not enjoy it. 

Now, I would rather move on. Take a question from another or change the subject.  But that is just me.

Recently, a comedian finished his act, walked into the audience and punched a heckler.  So if you are going to put down a heckler, do it with style or just move on.

(c) Paul Brennan 2011. All rights reserved. 

Click here for books, eBooks and CDs by Paul Brennan.

Legal Blog: 101 reasons to kill all the lawyers - reported to be in the top 20 legal blogs in Australia, UK and USA

legal cartoon, love law, Paul Brennan In June, reported that legal recruiter Twosteps has listed 101 reasons to kill all the lawyers as one of the top 20 legal blogs across Australia, the UK and the US. Earlier this year Lawyers Weekly included it in Australia’s top legal blogs and described it as "An excellent source of procrastination and a good place to check-in to when your colleagues or clients are driving you up the wall".

Here are some of the articles which make up the 101 reasons which will be familiar to long term readers as they first appeared in the Law & Disorder eZine. Thank you to those who have given words of encouragement from time to time they are really appreciated :

Reason # 9.  Scruffy lawyers.

Reason # 18. Legal lonely hearts.

Reason # 22. Aggression in Court.

Reason # 31.  Cross examination of a Chinese undercover policeman regarding his alleged investigations in an alleged brothel.

Reason # 44.  The 12 legal habits.

Reason # 56.  How to legally kill your cat.

Reason # 60. What to do when your own client falls asleep on you.

Reason # 70. Committee meetings.

Reason # 74.  Choosing the right person to sue.

Click here to be listed as a follower of the blog.

(c) Paul Brennan 2011. All rights reserved. 


ABC Radio Coast  FM90.3

At 3.20 pm each Thursday on the Jessica Hinchliffe Show on ABC Radio call in to have your legal questions answered by legal eagle, Paul Brennan.

Gift ideas for the legal industry

Go to our shop for gifts for lawyers including boxer shorts for lawyers who like to impress, mugs for nitpicking lawyers that you know, thank you cards for  your conveyancing lawyer (our least popular gift), coasters for lawyers who need to be reminded that there are always bigger clients out there, a Sod's law golf shirt for the rainmaker in your firm and an apron with a special message for lawyers who have married lawyers.

nitpicking lawyer mug gift for lawyers Paul Brennan

Design your own gift : Choose any of our cartoons from 101 reasons to kill all the lawyers  email your choice to    info@lawanddisorder.com.au and tell us on which item to put it. We will email you when it appears in our store.


heaven can wait legal gift Paul Brennan

Disclaimer: The content of the Law & Disorder eZine is to give you legal basics and in some instances included unashamedly to try and make you laugh.  In law it is sometimes difficult to work out what is serious and what is just for fun.  Therefore, if you plan to do anything legal, rely on your own lawyer’s advice or instruct me to look at the particular facts of your case.  Not only will I deny responsibility for the legal content but also for some of the jokes.


In this Issue
How to be sacked

Offensive jokes

Being heckled

101 reasons - a Top 20 blog


Forward to a Colleague


The Law & Disorder eZine attempts to provide legal information in an entertaining and amusing manner to help clients avoid predictable legal issues.

Sub-editor :

Alice Brennan

Brief Books

PO Box 27
Queensland 4557

brief books, Paul Brennan

QLD BN22069914

Phone: 07 5438 8199

Fax: 07 5438 8836



Liability limited by a scheme approved under professional standards legislation