Saturday 7 February 2015

I'd rather die of drink than of thirst

There are nearly as many Ian Fleming quotes about drinking as there are James Bond dust jackets.

My favourite is a line from Casino Royale which I often quote myself.

To Bond the best drink of the day was the drink he had in his head before the first drink of the day.

And quite where the (very blurred) line between Fleming and Bond really was is anyone's guess. Fleming was a serial womaniser and was rather partial to the bottle. He died in 1964 after a second heart attack aged just fifty-six, though he looked a good ten years older.

That may have had something to do with his diet: Fleming smoked seventy cigarettes a day and drank an entire bottle of gin. When told by his doctor to give up the gin he simply started drinking bourbon instead.


  1. Fantastic dust jackets, all of them.
    As a complete and utter lightweight when it comes to drugs and alcohol, the mere thought of seventy cigarettes and a bottle of gin sends my head spinning. How did he do it?

    1. You get practiced at it. My tipple was Guinness, you didn't have to bother eating much I found... once I was in recovery I've often wondered why I bothered and didn't just drink spirits but I was a slow learner!

      However I've had this conversation many times with normal drinkers when they say "But you drank beer (stout) so you couldn't have been an alcoholic surely". I think 10 - 20 pints a day at least 6 days a week is qualification enough. But then they say - "how did you drink that much"... practice, you simply keep trying until you get to do it without all the messing throwing up performance etc.

  2. I can relate to that quote - and many others of his on the subject of drink. Far be it for me to diagnose someone, esp someone who died when I was but a babe in arms but....

  3. C - Just ask Graham.
    G - Thank you Graham. There but for the grace of God and all that.