My Mysteriously Rejected Yet Obviously Awesome Travel Pitch To The Editors Of Prevention Magazine

Dear Lifestyle Editor, For this Prevention Magazine article, I will drive through Europe in a nice car and pretend to be James Bond.

Dear Lifestyle Editor,

For this article, I will drive through Europe in a nice car and pretend to be James Bond. My editorial goal is to help readers get inside the fantasy that we all grew up with. For one week, I would stay in nice hotels, drive fast cars, bed beautiful women, gamble, and, if possible, disarm someone in hand-to-hand combat.

The following items would be absolutely essential for the piece and must be taken into consideration in the budget.

I would need a very sexy car. I’m thinking a Bentley Continental VTC or a 1978 Aston Martin AMV8 Volante. While it’s not necessary that the car be outfitted with missiles, it would certainly lend to the article’s authenticity. As a backup, I would require either a small, one-person helicopter or a motorcycle that could fold up into a messenger bag.

Prior to whatever week we agree I should live out this fantasy, I would need to learn four languages and a handful of lingua francas, including Fanagalo and Quechua, as well as—for secret codes and whatnot—the extinct language of Wangerooge Frisian. For all of this preparation, I would need around-the-clock tutors for approximately four days.

I would also need to learn several forms of hand-to-hand combat, as well as parkour, that sport where you jump and hop around on buildings. I would need to know where painful nerve clusters are located in case I need to incapacitate someone on the sly, such as the person sitting next to me in the first- class cabin of an airplane or a duplicitous contact who ends up being one of the bad guys.

I would need several hundred thousand dollars in cash, for gambling, bribes, etc. I would need hotel reservations in Monaco. I would need several Savile Row three-piece suits and two high-end leisure outfits. I would need a Walther PPK automatic handgun. (This could be a fake, but I would wear it in a shoulder holster for the sake of authenticity.)

I would need to rent a supermodel who would hang on my arm and wish me luck when I’m at the baccarat table. (Here you would have the option of having this person double-cross me in some way.)

I would need someone to portray my boss, M, who will always be calling me up on my smart watch or the small television hidden in the car’s cigarette lighter and haranguing me for “going rogue” or “exceeding my portfolio,” whatever that means.

I would need an orchestra to play my theme song whenever I enter a room. I would need to make sudden, last-minute plans to travel to an exotic locale somewhere around the globe. Right now I’m thinking either Borneo or the Kingdom of Bhutan, where something would happen involving a zip line, an elephant, several culturally misplaced Maasai and Dogon warriors, and, if possible, Christopher Walken.

I think this article would be good for a small, front-of-the-book piece. There are a few other minor details that will need to be ironed out, but we can save that discussion for a Skype call later.

If you’re interested, I would need some upfront money to get the ball rolling.

Clay Shivers is a freelance writer living in San Francisco. Follow him at @clayshivers or visit his blog at

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