A Double Naught Spy He Ain’t

A Double Naught Spy He Ain’t


Photo of Poor William. Photo by The Delta Bohemian

Photo of Poor William. Photo by The Delta Bohemian

How can it be that a fairly intuitive, relationally perceptive man can somehow not notice objects apparent in his daily surroundings? Poor William, who once applied for a job with the CIA, always wanted to follow in Jethro Bodine’s–of the Beverly Hillbilly’s fame–shoes. He wanted to be a secret agent, or as Jethro defined it: a double naught spy.

Jethro, not mistaken for the first time in his overreaching life, thought James Bond’s 007 designation made him a double naught spy. Naught meaning nothing, we do presume. Categorically, one of the funniest segments in 1960’s era television, the double-naught episode begins with Jethro telling his rich Uncle Jed that he had decided against being a brain surgeon and instead wanted to become a spy. Had Jethro’s sperm count been between 10 and 15, it would have exceeded his IQ by two to three points

Much like Poor William, his erstwhile cheesy protégé, Jethro wanted to live dangerously, pick up hot chicks in sexy overcoats, and not be whupped any longer by Granny, who was meaner than Stalin with a toothache.

Sadly, Poor William nor Jethro possess the mental faculties to be double-naught anythings. So help me, Poor William doesn’t even know the color of the walls he sees daily, he cannot tell you what is on the walls at his home, and he surely doesn’t notice his dirty clothes strung out from the bedroom door to the bedside chair of great distinction.

Now, how is he supposed to be a double naught when he recognizes naught? Though able to ascertain the thoughts of lesser mortals, he sure as hell recognizes little around him. TV spies and the ones he reads about daily in his espionage and mystery novels recognize everything. They can scan a room and later tell you what each of the hundred guests were wearing, drinking, and thinking. Poor William can only tell you who the hottest five chicks in the room were, other than his spectacular bride of mythical proportions, Magical Madge.

If there had been a fly on the wall when Poor William was being interviewed in his last semester (and there were many last semesters) at Ole Miss by a CIA representative, I am afraid that poor fly would still be rolling around the floor laughing its little fly head off.

What did the double naught say to the CIA man when he asked him what job he would like to entertain with the Central Intelligence Agency? Well, a SECRET AGENT, of course! If the slight twitch displayed by the seasoned agent didn’t say it all, then Poor William ain’t sure what’s left to say.

Had the Obtuse One done a little pre-Internet research–like at the University Library, I think they had one–he would have know that the term was case agent, not secret agent, double-naught spy, or any other Hollywood version of a very real cat. But, he didn’t! He winged it like he wings everything and he is finding out that when you wing it you get winged. Winged ain’t any fun! In fact, it sucks. Preparation has the potential to turn even a rotund writer into a true double naught!

What is Poor William’s takeaway? Like Jethro Bodine and Archie Bunker after him, Poor William will not pursue brain surgery with the reckless abandon he might have and he will leave his double-naught days to the future, when he gets around to learning seven languages and has perfected the Jackie Chan wall climb and the James Bond jump from a perfectly good airplane with no parachute while keeping every hair in place and ensuring that the ample gin martini in his death-defying hands does not spill one shaken-not-stirred drop of juniper nectar. pw



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  1. P.W.—I remember the Double Naught Spy episodes but I also remember Jethro telling Uncle Jed that he could not decide if he wanted to be a Brain Surgeon or A Street Car Conductor. Honestly, I rather favored his twin sister, Jethrine.

    Everytime mom caught us watching The Hillbillies, she would turn off the T.V. and would allways say the show insulted everyone’s intelligence.

  2. There are worse ways of dying than from laughter. Haven’t seen that s–t in years. Rolling on the floor ,clean, comedy. Thanks P.W.!!!

    You bout ready to catch some Slab Crappie? They have moved in shallow.

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