I contemplated this dilemma on a crowded flight, as I sat sandwiched between two executives reading business journals of such unimaginable dryness that I longed to have the latest edition of "Closer" to balance them up. We were squished together on an evening flight so full of suits that it seemed to be a scene from "50 Shades of Grey", the bible to bespoke tailoring, and a title with slightly less sado-masochism than its racier namesake.
The day of the flight, my guts had been fooled into believing that I had been eating cabbage and beans. This resulted in me inflating, drawing ever closer to my suited neighbours which exacerbated a proximity issue with one of them who could not fit between the arm rests and thus was overhanging me precariously. The position was so bad, I was convinced he would not fit through a manhole cover should it be required without the removal of one of his arms or some assistance from below.
I wondered what James Bond would have done in a situation like this. A lifelong James Bond fan, I have always enjoyed the impossibility of his predicaments. The opening sequence of "Casino Royale" would I venture cause every normal human being in such a position to release emissions of gastric-originated gases at periodic intervals coinciding with their bounding from girder to girder of the incomplete structure on which the chase was being conducted. The iconic parachute jump from the cliff in the opening sequence of "The Spy who loved me" would be accompanied by the most monumental rasping from my derriere if I was in that position, causing the Union Jack parachute to ruffle in its wake to the strains of Carly Simon singing "Nobody does it better".
I suspect that Mr Bond along with the regal parachutist that accompanied him during the Olympic opening ceremony are from the school of mythical beasts that never do anything like that. Regrettably, I come from humble stock.
My very ordinary-ness means that acute car sickness, fear of heights and stress incontinence would prevent me from being Britain's most famous secret agent able to participate in car chases or fight with assailants on the top of cable cars.
As regards success with the ladies, I do however have something in common with Mr Bond. I can cause the zip on Mrs Pickwick's dress to come down whilst simultaneously instructing the Pickwick pooch to both sit and stay with a single movement of my hand. Unfortunately though, our respective body temperatures mean I am more Coldfinger to her Pussy Galore, my hands as cold as a Muscovite in a snow storm. For any clandestine encounters to occur away from the attentive ears of the Pickwick children, I have to move from Russia for love for Her Majesty's Secret Service.
Returning to my dilemma, I was fortunate to be sitting on a comfy plane seat with cheap leather covers and sufficient padding to stifle the effect of any such gastric-originated blast. This was useful as I have been in such a position that blast waves can transmit panic to my neighbouring travellers.
I needed a distraction. Turbulence was too random as I could not time my stomach muscles with any certainty to coincide with the judders of the plane. It was as the plane landed that I prepared to fire. I directed the cabin air supply towards me, the plane touched down and I blasted off.
Not a flutter of reaction from my silent neighbours. I had got away with it.
I had left my calling card but no-one noticed. They were shaken but had not stirred.
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