It was a Saturday. It was early morning and someone was knocking on Agent Bertram’s front door. ‘This can’t be good. It has to be the bloomin’ Palace. If I’m wanted at the Palace, it’s always on a bloody Saturday, in my own time,’ thought Agent Bertram dragging his dressing gown over his crumpled nightshirt and stumping downstairs to the front door. ‘The one day that I get to have a nice lie in and then traipse around the shops with my Beloved… and that’s the day they choose to knock on the front door at eight in the morning just when normal decent folk are settling down to a few more zeds! However, as traipsing around the shops looking for wedding stuff is not my idea of heaven, this could be a blessing in disguise…‘
Outside, standing on the front step of Bertram’s Gower Street home in London’s Bloomsbury area, was a middle-aged man dressed in a chauffeur’s outfit. He, being from Buckingham Palace, looked immaculate. Bertram scowled at him and glanced over his shoulder towards a Bentley Mulsanne car that positively oozed the colour black. This black was so deep and the paintwork so scratch-free that if it were not for the colourful Royal Crest on the passenger door, subtly announcing the vehicle’s provenance, it would have been difficult to determine if the car was really there at all.
“Something’s up at The Palace then, eh?” ventured Bertram speculatively. “I can see why you are Her Majesty’s Special Agent… and I am merely the chauffeur,” drawled the man in the thickest of soupy tones.
Master the Spy Field Craft of Agent Bertram and Jason Bourne, learning how to emulate them in the field. We make comparisons between Jason Bourne and Agent Bertram, man of mystery and pizza.
This post has been adapted from an article by The Lone Iguana to whom we are deeply indebted.
Jason Bourne, the Bourne Identity.
The ultimate Spy’s Assassin’s best mate. The trained assassin who has an arsenal of strength, tricks and gadgets to complete his missions. This article aims to dissect the Jason Bourne film The Bourne Identity so that you, the reader, can soak up as much information on Jason Bourne as possible and see how Agent Bertram can do the impossible.
The Tricks and the Trade Craft
When Bourne is on the ship, recovering from bullets shot into his back by bad guys and an irritating loss of memory, he continues to work out, doing pull-ups, etc. The lesson here is to stay in shape and continue to work out. Agent Bertram follows a rigid daily regime of lifting heavy cups of tea and weights that look like sausages but he assures us are really are for workout purposes.
After Bourne assaults two police officers, he ditches his coat to remove potential identifiers. He does this in freezing conditions proving that he is well hard! Agent Bertram likes to wrap up warm wearing his insulated Gannex raincoat at all times.
Bourne uses lockers provided by train and bus terminals to stash bags filled with money, weapons and identities he can use. This idea of creating caches is truly brilliant except that, as Agent Bertram found when attempting to build an emergency cache of pies, you can’t find lockers in railway and bus stations these days.
Bourne fights using a type of martial arts that is a combination of Filpino Kali and Jeet Kune Do, whilst Agent Bertram runs away as fast as his chubby little legs will carry him.
Bourne has a tiny laser projector in his hip that contains his bank account number. Agent Bertram has no need for this as he is permanently skint.
When removing items from his safe deposit box, Bourne takes everything except the gun. While some may discount this as a stupid move, we con sider it an intelligent one. Sometimes, carrying a gun with you can draw more unwanted attention and bring trouble. On his last mission Agent Bertram demanded that he be supplied with a mini gun but he tripped over the bandolier of bullets and shot down a tree.
When spotted by foreign police, Jason Bourne quickly enters the U.S. embassy, a place where the foreign police have no jurisdiction. If you are in a foreign country and are being chased by police, entering the embassy of your country might fend them off for a couple minutes. Agent Bertram usually hides in a local cake shop because he surmises that foreign Secret Agents would never dream that anyone would be sissy enough to hide in a cake shop.
When attempting to escape from the embassy, Jason Bourne grabs an emergency map from the wall, then knocks out a soldier and removes his communications device, so that he can hear where the soldiers are. Agent Bertram would politely ask where the exit was.
Bourne pays a girl $20,000 to drive him to Paris. While we don’t recommend this (most would get suspicious and alert the authorities), the tip here is that you can almost always use large sums of money to get what you need. Simple, right? (We also see this later in the film, when Bourne bribes a morgue worker to see a body.) Agent Bertram never has any money so he tries to bribe people with sausages. This has not yet met with great success.
The re-dial button on the phone is your best friend. You can use this on landlines without call logs, or if the phone does have a call log, you can use that as well. The point here is to retrace steps and discover agendas. (i.e. redials to the airport, taxi service, hotel, etc.) In the film, Bourne uses the re-dial button to discover another lead on his identity. On inspection of his phones, Agent Bertram’s redial numbers were all to local take-away food establishments, that deliver.
Bourne is an expert of fighting based on his surroundings. In a high action fight in his apartment, he reaches around for a makeshift weapon, settling on a ballpoint pen, which he uses to stab the assassin with. Agent Bertram once stabbed a bad guy in the eye with a red hot Cumberland sausage and then whacked him over the head with the frying pan.
During a high speed car chase, Bourne instructs his companion to look away from the police. This is most likely to avoid the confirmation of who is in the car. Agent Bertram would be far to busy looking in the mirror removing nasal hairs to even notice the police.
When Bourne ditches the girl’s car, he makes sure to wipe down everything. Later, it is proven a smart move when a police officer says something like, “You’ve been here for 3 hours and you still can’t find a fingerprint!?!”. Create dead ends for your followers, and leave no traces of yourself. Agent Bertram accidentally drove one of the AIVD’s (Dutch Secret Service) Spyker cars into a duck pond so there was no need to wipe it down.
The check in, or list of visitors is a great source for information. At a morgue, Bourne rips out several sheets to examine later for links to the person who took a body. Agent Bertram tried this but didn’t have the strength to rip out the pages.
In a fight with another assassin, Bourne uses a shotgun to blow up a gas tank, creating a large smoke screen for cover. If you are in need of a distraction, or a screen, blowing something up (at a distance) might be a good idea. Agent Bertram prefers calling to his opponent and inviting him over for tea and scones. The scones can be doped with a suitable knock-out drug and so Agent Bertram disables another bad guy.
When instructing a friend to lay low Jason Bourne says, “No friends, nothing familiar.” This basically sums up what you should do if you want to ditch your identity. This is not really a problem for Agent Bertram who has only one friend and they work together at The Ministry.
Bourne attaches a tracking device to a vehicle he suspects after luring agents to his specified location. Agent Bertram would not be able to bend low enough to do this and would leave this work to one of the AIVD’s Ground Dwarves.
This definitely deserves a “don’t try this at home” warning. Several flights up, Bourne needs to get down the stairs fast. Grabbing the nearest dead guy, he jumps, positioning the cadaver below, and landing hard. Using a corpse to cushion your fall may not be the closest thing in your situation, but you could use something similar. Agent Bertram once fell out of bed and onto his teddy bear, Teddy Odd-Ears. He wont be trying anything as heroic as this ever again. Agent Bertram insists that Teddy Odd-Ears is still complaining about the incident.
Frankly I am depressed, even for a Secret Agent. Here in the UK our Secret Services, MI5, MI6 or the SIS as they now like to be called, and my own people at The SIM or The Ministry as I call it, more accurately named The Sovereign Intelligence Ministry, have access to a myriad of intelligence gathering methods. The technological sophistication is mind boggling! If you can conceive it, then it is more than likely that we are already doing it. After the total failure of the French Secret Service to forewarn the people of Paris of an impending terrorist attack, this begs the question, what went wrong in Paris?
Eavesdropping and Scanning?
We scan every email that you send. We eavesdrop on your telephone conversations. We have access to satellite imaging that can track the movement of individual vehicles and people.
Midnight Raid by Peter the Pine Marten. Shock horror exposé probe! – William Frederick
Before I launch into the exploits of our local Pine Marten I would like to mention the weather. We seem once again to be following in the footsteps of our American Cousins in that we, in the UK, have started naming our storms. The Cousins must find it hilarious that the Brits feel compelled yet again to copy what they have done. In fact I have it from a colleague in the Foreign Office that the Whitehouse have a monthly meeting were hilarity oft ensues as they think up ever more bizarre things for us to imitate.
Yesterday and today we have been mauled by autumn storm Abigail which, if described as wild, would amount to an understatement of epic proportion. As I write this deathless prose, our slatted wooden ceilings are heaving up and down and creaking like a pensioner’s back, due to the the pressure changes in the loft as one wave of wind crashes against the house, followed by another. The wave analogy works just fine for me, I know full-well that it’s not water but invisible air crashing onto the roof and walls which behaves just as though we are in a wild tumultuous ocean. In compliance with the alphabetical storm naming of our Cousins, we will no doubt soon be visited by some more seasonal storms, given in our case, wimpish names like storm Bartholomew followed storm Camilla.
Early this morning at the crack of ten, I was in the kitchen manfully holding a mug of nearly hot coffee whilst looking out of the window at the majestic array of autumnal colours that bedeck the mature trees lining the banks of our local river. In its turn, the river was tumbling joyously down the glen to pass by our isolated home at a distance of some thirty yards before it headed on down to the loch. The leaves displayed every hue and shade of earthy red, turmeric yellow and brown selected from the brief autumnal colour spectrum. The rich golden ochre of the silver birch gave way to the golden red foliage of our rowan trees. The golden brown oaks blended into the golden bronze of the hazel, which in its turn vaulted purposefully into the deep golden brown of the alder before being brought to an abrupt halt as the author had run out of autumnal colours, even golden ones!
Further to my recent post regarding a foreign and completely unauthorised mouse found living the high life in our car, Beloved and I thought that the sorry story was now over, especially in view of my bit of advanced mouse whispering.
As a precaution, we put the humane traps back in the car on a ‘just in case’ basis, feeling sure that this was more of a belt and braces precaution than a concern, as I’m sure that you will understand.
Imagine our horror when on jumping into said car this afternoon we discovered THREE MICE in one of the humane traps!!!
Mouse whispering was once again employed. But today, it was at full volume! I opened the trap and placed it into the long grass shouting, “Fu** O** you furry little bas****s!”
I think that it’s time for a new car…
Please donate vast sums of money to William Frederick, Author and thoroughly skint chap… or buy my books! :O)
[For our American cousins who may not know the word skint, it means broke, having no money and being completely without funds].
“I was right!” or rather Beloved was right and, as her partner and protector, I was right too!
Do you ever wish that you could put someone down like Woody Allen does when he suddenly produces the Canadian philosopher Marshall McLuhan in the film Annie Hall? You remember… It’s the scene where Woody and Annie are standing in a movie queue waiting to take their seats in the cinema.
You may have noticed a certain abundance of wildlife stories in my blog. I retired to Argyll, self built a log home with Beloved and settled down to write. It was then that the mice found a drainage hole that I had not blocked and made an invasion of said home.
Author’s note: Mouse holes are notoriously difficult to block as the nippy little buggers refuse to keep still.