I MIGHT not believe in guardian angels but that doesn't mean I wouldn't like to have one.
Step up, Guardian Angel. Sadly lacking in wings and halo, the gadget is a 21st-century piece of kit. Worn as a necklace or bracelet, the Guardian Angel is designed to save its wearer from sticky situations, such as first dates.
Of the handful of dates I've attended, I imagine it was my companion who was in desperate need of a swift exit but this is designed specifically for women. The device has a button that, when pressed, calls the wearer's mobile phone with a fake emergency call, giving her the excuse to walk away.
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The Guardian Angel has a secondary feature. If your date's not simply unfortunate but, rather, truly disastrous, you can hold down the button for three seconds and the device will send your GPS co-ordinates to a friend. Shame it can't instruct the waiter to throw something hot over the bloke at the same time. Mainly, though, the makers say it can help you escape dodgy, not dangerous, dates.
Should the guy be a bore or order for you or talk overly-fondly of his mother/ex/cat, you can push the button and jettison yourself out of there like the coward you are.
Because, let's face it, if you can't just lay £10 on the table to cover the cost of your drinks and walk out of a bar, you're a coward. Take it from one who knows. I can't begin to count the number of awkward situations I've sat through, quietly sweating and desperate to be rescued. Like the London train where two gents from Ainderby Quernhow repeatedly sat a cardboard box with a rat in it on my knee while I pretended not to care. They also had a ferret in a birdcage, which would have been preferable to the rat, but was too big to fit.
The Guardian Angel makers have missed a trick, sticking to dodgy dates. The applications of this device are endless.
Drunks on buses. I'm forever stuck talking to drunks on buses. And at bus stops. And in bars, where they have more right to be than I do but still no right to invade my personal space.
Such a device would be fabulous for escaping univited doorsteppers - Jehovah's Witnesses, canvassers, members of the press. For evading forced chit-chat with racist/sexist/dull taxi drivers. For avoiding difficult questions from your boss.
Of course, you could just learn to assert yourself but why bother when technology creates such gifts for the socially awkward?