Monday, August 10, 2009

James Bond Daily: The Cold Opening

The first page of 1958's From Russia with Love:
The naked man who lay splayed out on his face beside the swimming pool might have been dead.

He might have been drowned and fished out of the pool and laid out on the grass to dry while the police or the next-of-kin were summoned. Even the little pile of objects in the grass beside his head might have been his personal effects, meticulously assembled in full view so that no one should think that something had been stolen by his rescuers.

To judge by the glittering pile, this had been, or was, a rich man. It contained the typical membership badges of the rich man's club -- a money clip, made of a Mexican fifty-dollar piece and holding a substantial wad of banknotes, a well-used gold Dunhill lighter, an oval cigarette case with the wavy ridges and discreet turquoise button that means Faberge, and the sort of novel a rich man pulls out of his bookcase to take into the garden -- The Little Nugget -- an old P.G. Wodehouse. There was also a bulky gold wristwatch on a well-used brown crocodile strap. It was a Girard-Perregaux model designed for people who like gadgets, and it had a sweep second-hand and two little windows in the face to tell the day of the month, and the month, and the phase of the moon. The story it now told was 2.30 on June 10th with the moon three-quarters full.
And: no, it isn't. He's not, and it's not him, either.
Listening to: Holmes - Not a Political Song
via FoxyTunes

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