It’s Friday. It’s gone 5pm. It’s nearly Christmas. There’s no way on earth anyone will be bothered to read something heavy on ‘tone of voice’ or ‘strategy’ (in fact I’ll be lucky if anyone read at all at this time…).
So… something fun and frivolous for you all…
I overheard something on the radio this morning – a study (genuine, paid-for reasearch) has taken place into the drinking habits of James Bond – in the 14 novels, not the films – which concluded he drinks so much that he’d be dead, through alcohol-related illness, by the age of 56.
Apparently this study was used to highlight the dangers of excessive alcohol consumption. Now, I don’t have much biomedical science experience under my belt, and I’m lacking a PHD, but would it not make sense to study real people first?
Researchers found Bond’s weekly alcohol consumption totalled 92 units a week, which is more than four times the amount recommended by the NHS.
That’s a whole 92 non-existent units, drunk by a fictional character. Madness.
Apparently it would do irreparable damage to his fictional liver.
Of course, Q or Miss Moneypenny could politely remind him: ‘hang on James, looking at your receipts [cost aside] you’ve gone over the weekly recommended alcohol limit’.
However, it’d be a bugger to explain this to femme fatales, in bars: ‘sorry, been hitting it a bit hard this week – that’ll be an orange and cranberry juice… don’t worry about the shaking bit’
It’s not just his liver that needs to be considered either. According to the study, the level of alcohol he consumes would seriously hamper his ability to carry out his day to day job.
I’m sure we can all consider this to be important in the context of our own lives: I mean, who wants to imagine that all of the international spies out there, with ‘license to kill’, are wandering around pickled?
The study gets worse for poor old James though, as ‘the finding of [him drinking] 92 units a week could actually be the low end of the truth, as studies have shown that people generally underestimate their alcohol consumption by about 30%’.
James will have to be even more careful, as other studies show that ‘fictional people hypothetically underestimate their alcohol consumption by up to 50%’*
The study isn’t all doom and gloom though, as it advises remedial action:
“We advise an immediate referral for further assessment and treatment,”…
I had a couple of queries on this, such as: how would this referral and assessment be made? Would the study’s authors make an appointment with their GP and send a James Bond novel in their place? Would they bring Daniel Craig to the appointment and say they’re just there ‘to offer support?’
Small but important details.
This study, and the important points it raised, did get me thinking though. I wondered if the following could be put forward for research:
-A look into whether the open (wardrobe) door policy has led to overcrowding in Narnia.
-Research into the climatic impact of Dennis The Menace’s parents having to wash his vast array of identical jumpers, and whether they should be using the ‘eco-wash’ setting more often.
-A study into whether the ‘Famous Five’ should be renamed the ‘Aspirational Five’ to give children more to aim for in life.
-A view as to what the impact of modern day cuts in the police budget would have been to Sherlock Holmes.
-The merits of Willy Wonka being a key sponsor of Sport England’s initiatives, given the sector in which he operates.
-Is the Artful Dodger symptomatic of the failings of the education system, would he have been involved in the 2011 riots, and what could’ve been done to help him?
-Was Hannibal Lecter’s sprightly disposition a result of his strictly organic, free-range diet?
-Paddington Bear: wandering immigrant or saviour of the marmalade industry?
I’m now actively looking for funding, to get one of these projects off the ground: if you are a philanthropist looking to waste some money, or know someone else who is, then please get in touch.
*This is not a genuine research statistic, I just felt like putting it in quote marks.