Eleven: Multi-tasking is murder

18:07, Apr 04 2014
Beck Eleven
Beck Eleven

The British Secret Intelligence Service is running a recruitment campaign and one of its top female agents has claimed that women make the best spies.

The unnamed woman says it is because we are excellent multi-taskers and can presumably plot assassinations whilst simultaneously scrubbing those really burnt bits from the corners of glass lasagne dishes. Also, we inveigle our way into other people's lives without suspicion because men don't assume women, especially mothers, could be spies. Ha! Caught by your own sexism, men.

Considering I bare every aspect of my life in this column, it would be fair to say I do not have an air of mystery but I'd like to think of myself as a decent spy. Actually, not just "decent" but properly good. A real femme fatale.

I checked with the good old reliable internet. It explains a femme fatale as a "mysterious and seductive woman whose charms ensnare lovers, often leading them into compromising, dangerous, and deadly situations".

Yes! This absolutely is me.

I have been trying to knock off the Non Doctor ever since we got together.


The experienced femme fatale, such as myself, will know that you have to start quietly. One must arouse everything except suspicion.

It began with the case of the poison duvet. I'd bought a new duvet cover in one of those rare sales they have at Briscoes. Now, usually I'd put something like that through a wash first but I was super keen so it came directly from the packet onto the bed. By morning, the Non Doctor was coughing and wheezing. Could it have caused a respiratory issue or two, I wondered. As soon as the duvet cover was removed, the wheezing stopped.

Aha! I realised he has slight allergic tendencies.

"What else are you allergic to?" I asked, displaying what he should have clocked immediately as an uncharacteristic air of concern for his wellbeing.

"Apples and most stone fruit," he said.

Now, every time I tell him I'm making us a healthy concoction from my juicer, I put in a few sweetening apples. He usually realises once he's coughed a couple of times.

"I forgot again," I say.

Then there was the delightful lamb salad in which he chewed something brown and squishy, otherwise known as a slug. Or it might have been a snail. Either way, he should have been asking himself the searching questions back then. Then I moved the bedside drawers really close to his side of the bed resulting in a corner to the forehead when I asked him to lean over and pass me a book.

Then, just last month I gave it my best shot. I came home to find the poor lad at the tail end of what he calls one of his "bi- annual asthma attacks".

I felt sorry for him, or at least I pretended to, using some of my skills as a multi-tasking woman. I was simultaneously weighing up whether Burt Reynolds or Tom Selleck had the better TV moustache.

Anyway, I drove to my friends' house around the corner to borrow an inhaler.

I was back within 10 minutes, inhaler in hand, chuffing it in his face and calmly imploring him to suck it down and breathe.

Things didn't get any better. I later discovered I'd taken the wrong, unhelpful inhaler.

At the writing of this column, I'd say the game is pretty well up. I have sat here for about half an hour going: "Other ways I have killed you? Yes, good. Other ways I have killed you?" for about half an hour and we have come up with plenty of ways.

"I think it's just as well I'm a doctor," he says knowing full well he is not a real doctor.

"Well," I say. "What about the time you tried to kill me by not getting me painkillers when I had a fatal kidney infection?"

"It's not revenge," he says. "You can't just walk around trying to kill me because I tried to kill you."

Or can I?

This is Agent 007-Eleven signing off.

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