While browsing through the jobs available on the USA version of Monster, I found a job that was obviously the sort of thing I should be doing with my time - being a Bodyguard in Los Angeles with Gavin De Becker & Associates...
Having almost watched The Bodyguard (with Kevin Costner and Whitney Houston) on at least three separate occasions, I figured that I was pretty au fait with the general concept - but, just to refresh my mind, I checked out out one of the movie posters and learnt that there are actually three rules in the bodyguard business:
1) Never let her out of your sight.
2) Never let your guard down.
3) Never fall in love.
I'm not sure how literally you have to take the first rule as it seems that, if you follow it to the letter, you will end up with a very intimate level of knowledge about your client - which may well, indirectly, lead to a breach of rule number 3. Hmm. It appears that the world of bodyguarding is perhaps not as straight forward as I had first imagined...
However, aside from my worries about possible rule contradiction, I now felt fairly secure in my knowledge of what it takes to be a bodyguard...
The job advert said that they were seeking "Men and women with integrity and high ethical standards", which made wonder where exactly ethics comes into bodyguarding. Perhaps they are looking for bodyguards who will refuse to protect certain clients on moral grounds? This, to me, sounds a good excuse to blame your ethics if everything goes tits up and your client ends up dead on your watch. "Cowardice doesn't come into it! I would have got in front of that bullet but you see, it would have gone against the grain of my ethical belief system..."
They also asked for "resourceful problem solvers" - which is possibly related to the logic problems I've identified within the three rule system - and set out a physical requirement test that all bodyguards have to pass, which is as follows:
40 Push-ups in 2 minutes or less
40 Sit-ups in 2 minutes or less
5 Pull-ups (Overhand, starting in a dead-hang)
Bench Press 100% of your body weight
1 Mile Run in 8 minutes or less
Now, I go to the gym (when I remember) but I'm not in amazing shape by any means - so when I tried out this test this afternoon and found that I could do it, I found it rather worrying. You see, to my mind, if I was going to pay thousands to hire a bodyguard, I'd expect him to be super-fit - not passably fit. Still, it's Gavin who makes the rules, so if he thinks that I'm in adequate physical shape then I guess I must be...
In my application letter, I set out my high ethical standards and my knowledge of the three rule system:
I wish to apply for the position of Bodyguard, as advertised on the Monster recruitment website, and have attached a recent resume for your consideration.
Although I have not worked as a Bodyguard before, I have studied the subject in-depth and have learnt, by heart, the important three rule system that encapsulates bodyguarding etiquette and logic.
In addition, I possess both integrity and high ethical standards and would be willing to do my utmost to protect the right client.
I look forward to hearing from you soon...
Assuming I can pass the physical test on location, I may soon be walking the mean streets of LA, protecting the likes of Snoop Dogg and Britney Spears...assuming they can pass my moral litmus test, of course...