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Deja Vu
28 June, 2010  
L.C. Gruzman, I. Temby and Teddy Kennedy

From the Rewind Office … Justinian’s hard copy archive coughs-up snippets from 22 years ago … Laurence Gruzman’s fear of AIDS infected Qantas stewards … Ian Temby’s fearlessness … And the Australian Legal Convention – a bridge too far for Teddy Kennedy


From Justinian No. 55, 1988

Blood on the floor

Laurence Gruzman QC got a terrible caning in the letters column of Granny Herald over his worry about Qantas employing AIDS infected cabin staff to mix martinis and serve Caesar salads to fare paying passengers.

Gruzman wrote to the paper raising the terrible spectre of what might happen if a “Bleeding cabin attendant was thrown against a passenger with an open wound”.

Not only this but Lorrie says it’s not the place for these people who might be called on to open stuck doors or handle heavy life rafts.

Presumably, he thought, if Qantas can employ the infected ones in the front of house, God knows what diseases exist among pilots, who as we all know are an extraordinarily randy bunch.

“The Department of Transport, which is supposed to enforce medical and safety standards, should do something to stop this nonsense,” Lorrie said.

AIDS expert Professor R. Penny responded by calling the flamboyant silk “ill-informed” and a “self-proclaimed expert”. He assured that that there is no transmission of this disease through “casual contact”.

Someone called G. Agnew from Potts Point went so far as to write accusing Gruzman of being “muddled and grossly irresponsible” and worse still “ignorant”.

Brave Temby

I, for one, was certainly relieved to read in The Sydney Morning Herald that Federal DPP, I. Temby, has no fears.

The Herald, in a slightly meaningless little piece in its Agenda section, decided to phone around a few known and unknown identities to ask them what their fears were.

Largely the responses were predictable enough. Manning Clark was afraid of roosters as a boy. Franca Arena, the NSW politician, is scared of the dark. Dr William Grey, president of the Australian Skeptics’ Association is afraid of sharks. Gary Sattler from the AIDS Council of NSW, dislikes the eyes of sharks, etc, etc.

When it came to good old Tembers, he simply says: “As far as I know, I’m fearless.”

One less bridge for the fat boy

Planning for the 1989 Legal Convention in Sydney is reaching an absolute frenzy.

Apart from some slowness in working out who to ask to give papers and delays in getting acceptances from these worthies, everything is in hand.

J. Marsden is in charge of the social activities, and the theme of the week-long orgy of talk and lubrication is “Building Bridges”.

It was suggested, at one point, that apart from “a prominent Asian”, a suitable luminary to have as a keynote speaker would be Sen. Edward Kennedy, the sort of person who would pack-in a good crowd.

This fabulous idea went a little sour when it dawned on someone that at one point during his career Senator Kennedy encountered some inordinate trouble with bridges, and in view of the theme of the convention he might not be an appropriate guest.

It means that his non-appearance will deprive the Murdoch press of heaps of fun, bearing in mind that it is Murdoch’s Boston newspaper which delights in calling the distinguished senator “fat boy” and various other rude names.

Just what Teddy could have spoken about must remain a mystery. Possibly the innovative techniques he used to pass law exams at Harvard.

However, one idea that looks as if it will go ahead is a session on clients’ views of lawyers, or how users of the law perceive the professional and its workings.

It is understood that a prominent businessman, a trade unionist, and a well known ex-criminal will be invited to join in this important forum.

Names of potential invitees on the list so far include FAI’s Larry Adler, Mr J. O’Toole from the Meat Workers Union, and Harry M Miller.