Your reference to the late Judge Nesbitt brought a smile to my face. He was my first judge and I learned a lot about being a lawyer from him. He had no time for egos and quickly dispatched mine.
My first case was a shoplifting case defended by Bob Josefsburg. The A-form had a NE address instead of a NW address. Bob sat back and asked very few questions. I knew I was on my way to victory in my first case against a respected lawyer. After laughing about those "new kids" who had just started in the SAO and thought they knew it all (surely an apt reference to me), the judge granted a JOA because I had proven that the crime occurred in the middle of Biscayne Bay.
After he dismissed a few more of my cases,I learned how to prepare a case and how to prove each element. He made you actually prove your cases and didn't act like a rubber stamp just trying to move things along. In his courtroom, legal research and county court were not mutually exclusive terms. He enjoyed a good argument and really challenged me to do my best. I rarely won those arguments; not surprising- he was a brilliant man and, I believe, the valedictorian of his law school class.
Most importantly, he taught me to respect the power of my office and the impact I had on the lives of others, lessons I never forgot. Many disliked him because he was intolerant of lawyers who were not prepared and afraid to go to trial, and let them know it. Many thought he was a crusty, cantankerous curmudgeon; I though he was a wise old man who exemplified how a judge should behave.
Rumpole says: Bob Josefsberg representing misdemeanors. Now that was truly the good old days! See you in court.