Sunday, May 14

Quer·u·lant /'kwer-(y)&-l&nt /abnormally given to suspicion and accusation

Shhhhhhh....they're out there.

They do venture out of their natural courtroom habitat into the mediation room - but only rarely and only when the fight is worth it.

Sometimes they can fade into the undergrowth of the debate for hours but eventually they'll break cover and reveal themselves.

The guidebooks identify them thus;

1. they have volumes of thumbed documents covered with post-it notes in a rainbow of colors

2. if you as mediator are not for them, you're against them - if you insist on being neutral, they'll put you in play

3. if they have a lawyer, they'll be the 5th one in as many months and be a wet bus ticket who follows the client, not leads the client.

4. oh yeah, and they don't want an outcome - they need the fight.

Querulous paranoia may have disappeared from the psychiatric literature, but it is flourishing in modern complaints organisations and the courts.

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