The new James Bond film “SkyFall” is out soon and predictably there have been a deluge of 007 related posts bouncing around the media and Ethernet world. Not being slow to jump on the bandwagon this is my shameless attempt to cash in on the franchise.
Mr Bond in his various suave incarnations which include Sean Connery, Roger Moore, Pierce Brosnan and the latest superspy Daniel Craig is undoubtedly well travelled, he’s even been into space. However what can be learnt from his travel style? Aside from killing almost everybody he meets and sleeping with the rest, a large proportion of which he also kills incidentally is there anything worth learning?
“British Intelligence needs to open its 4G network to the public”
James Bond is probably the original digital traveller, he has always had the coolest gadgets, many of which I would probably kill for. Cool, only the third paragraph and I’ve discovered something in common with James Bond! Regardless of his situation, dangling from a cotton thread or freefalling without a parachute he always reaches M, Q or any other identity challenged contact. Jimmy never has issues with Wi-Fi connections or roaming charges, making him possibly the best connected traveller there is. Forget Vodafone or Orange, British Intelligence needs to open its 4G network to the public.
Being prepared for anything and having a gadget to cope is something I always strive for but have to admit James has me beaten handsdown. I can’t recall the last time I needed a pen that fired tranquiliser darts or a watch that can blow up bank vaults (ok maybe I can) but whatever the situation 007 has the tech to deal with it. Trouble is he does his shopping at QBay where logging in is a nightmare.
He may also be the ultimate networker; his ability to turn heads when entering a room is legendary. He always improvises a way to connect with the super villain he needs to confront in a crowded room. This skill is almost miraculous and must be the envy of any member of the diplomatic or marketing communities, though as the target usually comes to a nasty end his follow up skills are a little less impressive.
Royalty, Heads of State, Ambassadors of nations or industry are all susceptible to his magnetic personality. Nothing deflects him, armed security guards, beautiful women or impregnable fortresses are mere formalities, minor challenges to befriending his quarry and ultimately using this to ‘remove’ them. Hopefully we don’t usually meet too many other travellers that need to be fed to sharks or piranhas but fortunately there are slightly more positive uses for networking.
Mr Bond has made making a grand entrance or statement into an art, his trademark introduction “Bond, James Bond” is one of the most recognisable phrases in the world. Anybody aware of the origins when producer Albert R. Broccoli met Howard Hughes understands the power of those three words. His quick wit ensures he always has a ready quip, making a good first impression and having the last word in any conversation.
Most of us rarely have need to hide from the Japanese yakuza or escape from Columbian drug cartels (if I did my blog would be so much more interesting) but having a network of contacts like Jimmy would be handy for us all. It’s unclear whether 007 is an active member of the Couchsurfing community, but if he is I imagine his profile makes interesting reading:
Name: Bond, James Bond.
Location: Top Secret.
Description: Licenced to Kill meaning supervillians beware, also unofficially licenced to thrill meaning ladies beware.
Testimonials: None, either classified, no longer breathing or a woman scorned.
“his travel budget is the envy of all but Bruce Wayne”
The superspy also knows how to enjoy the good things in life as another phrase which is attributed to him “vodka martini, shaken not stirred” ably demonstrates. His well known love of a certain expensive champagne, only ever travelling first class, driving Aston Martins or flying by private jet makes his travel budget is the envy of all but Bruce Wayne. He scoffs at Virgin Atlantic or Singapore Airlines he always travels British Intelligence. They really seem to be missing some good commercial opportunities here, obviously in need of a new marketing strategist.
Personally I only have to look at a seat on a plane or train and my shirt will have more creases than a Shar Pei’s brow yet Jimmy manages to keep his tuxedo immaculate as he fights off two heavyweight Sumo wrestlers while riding a motorbike through a sandstorm. He will emerge at the other end of a five minute stretch of high octane action dusting off his cuffs and entering a very exclusive gentleman’s club without a mark.
He obviously knows the secret to good clothes pressing and packing but even so his tailor must be the envy of Saville Row. Seriously, if MI6 explored some of it’s commercial enterprises we’d have a better economy than any of the former enemies of the Empire!
“avoiding the risk of headaches from low flying top hats”
Our man Bond, is a very capable and adaptable individual, he has learnt to make the most of every situation. Whether escaping some impromptu laser sex modification or avoiding the risk of headaches from low flying top hats his sense of humour and eternal optimism ensures he comes out smelling of Floris No. 89.
Arguably his ability to overcome his shortcomings could be the most useful lesson to be learned. A renowned misogynist (I googled it; woman hater) his success with the fairer sex regardless of any charms confuses mere mortals to say the least. He also has the unstinting devotion of the ever loyal Miss Moneypenny and one suspects even Dame Judi Dench holds a secret torch for him. Maybe good girls really do prefer a bad boy?
Getting back to reality I’ll never be able to travel like James Bond, can’t carry off a tuxedo like he can. Besides it’d be better to travel like Superman wearing a cape and underwear over my pants is much more my style.