Why I’ve decided not to be James Bond

You could barely tell us apart (Image Credit)

In typical “stay at home because we’re parents, knackered and a bit boring” style, I was watching a bit of James Bond last Saturday night. I love a hypothetical question (if I won a $100 million, if I was a famous rock star, if we still lived in London, if I was taller – you get the idea) and this night was no different. I was asking myself if I still had the ability to be James Bond.

I use the word still because I once truly believed that I could, if I wanted, become a spy. So sure was I that I even rang the ASIO head office in Canberra after a particularly boring uni lecture to ask them to send me an information pack (“Good morning, I was wondering if you could put me through to the international espionage section”).

Throughout my twenties I had a few of these alternative career paths up my sleeve. I applied for an interview with CARE Australia when I went through my “maybe I could work in a refugee camp” stage, I nearly tried out for a proper band, I downloaded the form to become a Fireman and wondered about becoming a police detective. Each “career” had the same overriding themes. Firstly the obvious one: Chicks dig spies (“this is my last night in Sydney, after this I won’t be able to contact you”) , refugee co-ordinators, rock stars and my other choices. The second is that they all (in my mind) allowed me to travel to far off places, be a hero, do stuff I love or… impress girls.

Lying in bed after the movie I let my mind wander, playing around with how I could be James Bond again. How I could jump on-line and download the “license to kill” application, trade in the family wagon for an Aston Martin and utilise the skills I have developed in the last couple of years to preserve the free world. Along with my liking for action and adventure I can now:

  • Withstand hours of agonising screaming and sleep deprivation – perfect for combating enemy torture techniques
  • Blend in perfectly with a room full of parents. Although I look like just another proud Dad talking about his daughter, I am really just practicing a deep cover technique
  • Negotiate myself out of extreme conflict. My ability to walk in the door and calm down two warring parties could easily be used in the settling of international kidnapping disputes (ticking both spy and detective aspirations)
  • (Probably) Drive in a highly choreographed car chase. My ability to drive, whilst being tortured (see point 1) and negotiating a truce between parties (previous point) at the same time retrieving dolly from behind the seat, changing lanes and making sure Big Red Car is playing again at 60km per hour is pretty much, point-for-point ,the international man of mystery driving skills course.

My conclusion however, is that although I’m only a few tests away from being a spy (or musician, detective or fireman), for the first time that I can remember, I’m pretty happy with what I have. Being Bond means I probably wouldn’t have time to be home for baths and giggles, Being a musician touring the world could mean weeks where I couldn’t read Green Sheep for the 1000th time and I’m not sure if the whole refugee camp career would pause on weekends.

Don’t get me wrong. I’m not counting out saying yes when I get called up to fight world poverty, crime or the worrying increase in boy bands but right now, I don’t need the buzz I was chasing with my career alternatives. Instead I’ll continue to work in deep, deep cover as a Dad, besotted with his two ladies, excited about the next little package due early next year but quite happy to drink vodka martinis and drive expensive European cars should the need arise.

So today I’m asking what you wanted to really be when you grew up. Are you already doing it or like me, would you need to do a few courses first?

Sharing this week, as always with the super villain Jess over at EssentiallyJess for IBOT

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45 Responses to Why I’ve decided not to be James Bond

  1. Roshni says:

    LOL!! I’m sure you would be a Master negotiator as well!!

  2. Lydia C. Lee says:

    Not quite on point, but yesterday I got offered a media screening to see James Bond in my secret other life and I turned it down to have lunch with my husband. So I can honestly say I turned down a lunch date with James Bond….

  3. iSophie says:

    omg this is GOLD!

    (“Good morning, I was wondering if you could put me through to the international espionage section”).

    hahaha!

    And I can relate to all of your points, you are certainly the multi tasker whilst driving, it’s a talent, it really is. Well, a talent to do that and not crash. I have 4 carseats in my car, and MANY arguments and lost items. (Plus I still have the 2 year old in an extended rear facing seat) So harder to see what mischief he is up to.

  4. Hilarious as ever Kev, love the ‘transferable skills’! I always wanted to be a writer! Finally I feel like I am doing what I always dreamed I would.

  5. mumabulous says:

    Morning 00-Kevin! I’m yet to see Mr Bond, in a car chase through treacherous mountain terrain, screaming “just stop whinging”, “no I can’t open your window all the way down” or “Jesus Christ – have you done a poo?” at his mini-spies strapped into the back seat of the Aston Martin. Double thumbs up.
    PS: Just quietly the Daniel Craig photo made for some pleasant morning viewing.

  6. I wanted to be a ballerina.. I should’ve kept up those ballet lessons :)
    I think parenting is similar to being a spy.. minus the Aston-Martin.

  7. mummysundeservedblessings says:

    I was a massive fan of Alias and I still do sometimes dream of jet-setting my way around and saving the world just like Sydney Bistow but I wouldn’t give up being a mum for anything. I had a degree and will probably study more in the future but all those things don’t seem important when I am giggling with my three girls.

  8. Jodi says:

    I don’t think I could be a spy, but I did like the sound of being a private invesigator, but one of those ones that appear on Today Tonight or A Current Affair. They bust people who say they have a bad back (and are claiming compo) but are really dancing in their back yards. I like the idea of hiding in the bushes and videoing it…..that really makes me sound a bit creept huh? I promise you I am not! :)

    • Kevin says:

      the current affair investigator sounds like a good compromise – still a bit exciting but fits around childcare responsibilites. Not creepy at all

  9. Hahaha, I love it. I can’t even remember what I wanted to be. Rachel x

    #TeamIBOT was here

  10. lyndal says:

    hmmmm i’m not sure i would manage driving well whilst being tortured either… good point!

    #teamIBot

  11. lovely post

    if i could click my fingers – no work involved – a successful international fiction writer

    xxx

  12. Alicia says:

    You may have a great story line for a movie there, sippy cup in one hand, dirty nappy in the other, ready to defend against any evils. I’m sure the dirty nappy would crumble many men, my hubby being one of them!

  13. melba says:

    Yep. Gratuitous James Bond/Daniel Craig pictures will work every time. I respect you more for the use of them.

  14. Funny!! Some pals of mine at Oxford did get the tap on the shoulder and although one has always denied it….. I always wanted a life of foreign travel and glamour. Hold on, I still do!! How long til the youngest leaves school? Parenting has been torture in so many ways, for sure I’d say nothing on the wrack, am so used to it.

  15. I actually went through the initial steps of joining the air force when I was younger (younger, ha! I’m only 28! That’s not old! Right? Right?!?!) I went to the gym every single day, I shed all the puppy fat, I messed around with guns on the range and learned all about planes (even though my plan was actually to go base MP). Unfortunately a childhood injury in my right hand/arm meant that the primary weapon, the side arm, was rather problematic for me, and the recruiter, who was absolutely lovely, said that in all likelyhood it was deskville for me. Well like hell I went through all that to ride a desk…

    Now, the puppy fat is back (two pregnancies will do that if you don’t have time to gym it off), I’m pretty sure my marksmanship isn’t what it used to be, and the idea of leaving my girls and my husband for any great length of time actually makes me feel a little ill. I’ve missed my action adventure window – still, this is an adventure all it’s own.

  16. Jasmine says:

    hahahaha this is absolute gold!!! You are such a good writer and your hilarious!! I think of all the things i have read today, you have made my day!!!! :)

    All of your training has now prepare you for your biggest assignment… To be a dad!! :)

    Can’t wait for more!! :)

  17. Yep, I’d say you’ve nailed the art of being a spy right there!

    I too wanted to be a spy, butthe other things I really wanted to be were a librarian and a Mum. A librarian because I thought it would be cool to read books all day. I did end up working in the book industry, just selling books rather than lending them so that’s not too bad, wish fulfilled!

    I wanted to be a Mum so I didn’t have to go to school or work and could stay at home all day and do whatever I wanted. Obviously the reality of that career is far, far different to what my 10-year-old self expected but I do freely admit I’d much rather get up at 6am to start a days work as Mum than get up at 6am to start a days work selling books! Even if I don’t get paid overtime and sick leave!

    • Kevin says:

      A Librarian? That’s an unexpected response but thinking back I did go through an “architect” stage becasue I liked using lego. Now I renovate in my spare time. By renovate I mean break things and by spare I mean between 2:45 and 3:07 each Saturday afternoon

  18. Me says:

    LOL – thanks for making me laugh although it would have been better if I had laughed out loud at home instead of in the office !!!!

    Loved this line – “Good morning, I was wondering if you could put me through to the international espionage section” – I am sure you brightened someone’s day with that !!!

    Have the best day and good luck with the driving while trying to do everything else at the same time – although you forgot the part about trying to feed her whilst on the road because she is sooooooooooooooooooooooo hungry !

    Me

  19. Rita Azar says:

    I love your post! When I was younger I wanted to be many things and one of them was a writer/journalist. I ended up being a lawyer which was also very interesting. Now that I’m in a new country, I’m taking this opportunity to reach out to my old dreams and write…

  20. Kelly HTandT says:

    I hope the fact that I shared this on Google+, FB AND Twitter expresses how much I loved this post! Every time I watch a “Bourne” movie I dream of a life as a super awesome spy with SKILLS… I used to want to own my own restaurant, manage a hotel, become a lawyer, I applied to study psychology, ended up studying business, then one day none of it mattered anymore. One day I just wanted to keep making babies until my ovaries shrivelled up and fell out.

  21. Grace says:

    Sitting here at our Bali hotel lobby and laughing my head off. Sleep deprivation is the makings of any action super hero.
    I always wanted to be a musician. Instead I studied Japanese and lived there for a decade working in the corporate world. Go figure…

  22. Danya Banya says:

    It’s funny isn’t it, this feeling of contentness with being s SAHM/D. I always thought the kids would fit in around my super career climbing life or my world traveller life or my social butterfly life. But they don’t seem so alluring now…

  23. This could be my new favourite post – humour and serious thinky thoughts.

    I wanted to be a ballerina. For about 12 years. Turns out I was a competent ballet dancer, but that was about it. And right now, I’m doing my dream job – being a mother and writing lots :)

  24. Love this post!! I didn’t know what I wanted to do when I grew up and at 40 … I’m sad to say, I still don’t.

  25. I understand your Bond dilemma. Last night I was trying to work out which one of the Expendables I’d like to be. Sigh. It’s always the tough things that keep us up at night …

  26. See I could totally be Bond but I’m just not a big fan of martinis- shaken or stirred. Great post hopefully one day I know the blessing of being a parent.

  27. I so badly wanted to be the Bionic Woman … or adopted!

  28. Azara says:

    Now I’m curious about what a spy agency recruiting/information package looks like. Maybe I should go check out the CSIS website. OK – so I googled how to become a spy in Canada and found out this: “They’ll call anyone and everyone you’ve known over a significant period of time (up to 10 years). This includes friends, employers, teachers, and neighbours. If you’re unable or reluctant to provide this information, your chances of joining will be significantly hurt. (http://www.ca.askmen.com)”

    I don’t understand. Aren’t spies supposed to be secret? I’m thinking if they’re going to grill everyone you’ve ever known to make sure you’re not in the Mafia (good), that’s going to make the undercover work a little difficult (not so good). Obviously I’m missing something here…

    Now I have to follow your blog. Anyone who can tempt me into looking up the spy selection process is bound to entertain me in future.

  29. Nirvana says:

    ‘Withstand hours of agonising screaming and sleep deprivation – perfect for combating enemy torture techniques’ – Epic!!! you had me hooked the moment I read this :-)

  30. Irish Carter says:

    Well I had a lot of ambition when I was little..I planned to be a trapeze artist in the circus, a lawyer, an olympic gold medalist gymnast and a New York City Rockette……Oh and a famous writer. I did do gymnastics and dance and then stopped growing at 5’2″ and after an injury gave up on my career of dance….I do still dream of the cool acrobatics everytime I visit the shows at Sea World in Florida. I was a legal advocate for many years but lost interest as a lawyer and although I am not famous and have no interest in being, I have spent my life writing. = )

    Irish Carter
    Dedicated2Life.com
    “Promoting Passionate People”

  31. shan says:

    You’re one cool dad

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