It's the birthday of author Ian Fleming, born in London in 1908. His family enjoyed wealth and social standing; his father, Valentine, was a Member of Parliament, and when he died in World War I, Winston Churchill wrote his obituary. All doors were open to young Ian, and he worked as a foreign journalist, a banker, a stockbroker, a high-ranking officer and assistant to the director of British naval intelligence, and foreign manager of London's Sunday Times before he took up the career, and the character, that would make him famous. Casino Royale (1953) was the first of his many "James Bond" novels, which featured the playboy spy — code name "007" — and a host of fast cars, nifty gadgets, and hot women.
Fleming also wrote a children's book, Chitty Chitty Bang Bang (1964). In it, his character Commander Pott gave some advice that Bond might have heartily endorsed: "Never say 'no' to adventures. Always say 'yes,' otherwise you'll lead a very dull life."
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