Tuesday, 3 February 2015

A magical mystery tour for the naive

14 January 2015, 12.30 pm

Mr Davies and I meet with CIPA’s Head of Education, Ms Sear.  We are scared because we have forgotten to bring any Learning Outcomes with us.

The meeting is about how naïve we are to think that the patent administrators’ course can be updated and upgraded and brought under the CIPA Academy of Outstanding Learning Excellence in time for the 2015 intake.  The outcome of the meeting is that Ms Sear tells us to STAND ASIDE so that she can project manage it all properly.  We say: “Yes, yes, please!  Yippee!  Thank you!  When can you start?”  But we try to sound reluctant when we say it, because we are not sure it is the right thing to do, when you are trying to take over the world, to delegate the project management to someone else.

It occurs to me that this is how my mother gets out of helping to make the tea when she comes to stay.  Ms Sear exudes exasperation, just like I do when my mother asks me what to peel the carrots with and I resist the urge to lend her an angle grinder.

To lighten the mood, Mr Davies takes us on a magical mystery tour of 95 Chancery Lane.  On the fourth floor, above the CIPA offices, the workmen have been knocking stuff about a bit, and rumour has it that the landlord needs a new tenant for this thoroughly knocked-about space.  Mr Davies has a twinkle in his eye.  I realise he is plotting to expand his empire floor by floor.

The fourth floor is indeed quite a nice space.  You could imagine a Presidential Suite up there, like they have at the EPO.  (Mwa ha ha.)  You could imagine a common room for visiting CIPA members, with bean bags and scatter cushions and a bar in the corner and maybe a CIPA bong (ceremonial, of course).  But Mr Davies is imagining more office space for himself, thank you very much.  He has already decided where he is going to hang his hat and where Unlucky Gary is going to sit waving the Post-It® notes that have swear-words on.

Ms Sear keeps quiet.  It matters little what Mr Davies and I think because we could not project manage our way up to the fourth floor without her anyway.  She has a management qualification, a massive Gantt chart and twenty-eight learning outcomes.  We have a load of daft ideas and twenty-eight rounds (in the libationary sense, not the military) of misplaced optimism.  Ms Sear thinks we are funny.  But she is not particularly worried about our plans to take over the world.

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