238 THE ADVOCATE
VOL. 78 PART 2 MARCH 2020
maybe, he’d made a difference. I think that just about captures it for me
Q: Any regrets or frustrations?
A: I regret that there were three courthouses I never sat in: Duncan, Prince
Rupert and Revelstoke. As for frustrations, I was frustrated by the system’s
reluctance to change. This encompassed a number of things, but
the court’s substandard technology, including the telephone system, is
one concrete example of a failure to implement changes that would
advance access to justice.
Q: You were a baseball umpire for many years. I gather you draw an analogy
A: I’m glad you asked. First, an umpire’s job, like that of a master or judge,
is to get the call right. Second, you have to remember that the game—
here, the justice system—belongs to the players. As a master I felt like
a mere trustee for the institution because the courthouse belongs to the
public. Third, the best game you can have is when no one remembers
your name. The last of the umpire rules—“seldom wrong but never in
doubt”, together with the associated need to “sell” the call—may not be
quite as relevant in court, but it has its applications there as well.
Q: What are you looking forward to doing in your retirement?
A: We’re building a cabin on our property in the Cache Creek area. That
will keep me very busy. Also, I’ve put the banjo aside lately and I hope
to start playing again.
1. A pseudonym.
2. Re Garness, 2004 BCSC 1260 at para 21.
3. (2005) 63 Advocate 144.
4. Borsato v Basra, 2000 BCSC 28 at para 5. John
Cage was an avant-garde American composer.
From Wikipedia: “Cage is perhaps best known for
his 1952 composition 4’33”, which is performed in
the absence of deliberate sound; musicians who
present the work do nothing aside from being present
for the duration specified by the title. The content
of the composition is not ‘four minutes and 33 seconds
of silence’, as is often assumed, but rather the
sounds of the environment heard by the audience
5. Vancouver City Savings Credit Union v Naidoo,
2014 BCSC 2143 at para 1.