I still regard Jeff Kennett as a good and cheerful acquaintance with whom I have shared some wonderful lunches (and I hope I'll do so again) despite having once met in a court room where I delivered an abject and warranted apology for saying something quite wrong about him.

The apology was, what I considered then, a fair cop though I still wonder about the amount of damages my then employer The Bulletin had to pay to end a separate defamation action over a related story. In the end my words did the Victorian Premier no apparent damage and, still hurting from paying a losers share of legal fees in my own case, I confess to a certain pleasure when Jeff subsequently lost a later case against The Australian. There's something nice about the biter being bit!