Friday, 07 August 2015

FIRST IMPRESSIONS: Jenny Eclair

…is an English comedian, author and actor. She was the first woman to win the Perrier Award at the Edinburgh Festival. She has appeared in numerous TV shows and has published several books. She lives in London with her partner and her daughter.

What are you working on at the moment?
Having just finished my fourth novel, Moving, I’m working on another solo show, How To Be A Middle Aged Woman (Without Going Insane).

When are you at your happiest?
I like to be in a bath. Water is good for me; I’m a Pisces. I have two baths a day – and that’s when I read as well.

What is your greatest fear?
It depends what’s happening at the time. If it’s raining on the motorway, my biggest fear is dying on the motorway. If I’m on a plane and there’s turbulence, that’s my greatest fear. If I’m a little bit ill, that’s my greatest fear. But my absolute greatest fear is something happening to my daughter.

What is your earliest memory?
When my father died I had a very strong memory of the first time he carried me on his shoulders. He was in the Army and he’d come back from Arabia. He took me to the sweet shop, and on the way back he pretended he couldn’t remember where we lived. I thought it was hilarious, but terrifying.

What do you most dislike about yourself?
I’m terribly greedy, lazy, spiteful and jealous. I’m really not a very nice person at all. And the worst thing about it is, I couldn’t give a s***.

Who has been your greatest influence?
I do feel as if I made up a career as I was going along; I didn’t have anyone to copy. It was not wanting to do what most people did that led me astray and to where I am today. So I do not have any influences.

What is your most treasured possession?
A pearl ring of my mother’s that’s really pretty, and the pearl fits just up my nostril, which I find really comforting.

What trait do you most deplore in others?
Dullness. The inability to conduct a conversation. Lack of imagination really upsets me.

What do you most dislike about your appearance?
I’m on HRT , and even though it’s made me a much nicer woman, I have puffed up like a snake that’s eaten a pig.

What is your favourite book?
The Goldfinch by Donna Tartt, but if you ask me again in a year’s time it might be different.

What is your favourite film?
I like film but I don’t love it. So I don’t have a favourite film.

Q A-Aug07-02-590

And your favourite piece of music?

I have lots of songs I like, but I’m not musical; music is fairly low down in my priorities. But I am a good DJ; I pick my intro and outro music when I’m doing shows.

What is your favourite meal?
As long as I have a jar of Hellmann’s low-cal mayonnaise, I can eat anything. I really like lobster, if we’re allowed to go posh. But I could eat a pig – I’d start from the snout and go to the tail.

Who would you most like to come to dinner?
I never answer this question. I don’t want anyone coming round my house.

What is the nastiest thing anyone has ever said to you?
I got horribly trolled on Twitter recently. People sent me offensive images that had been doctored. It was the most horrible thing – the effort they’d gone to.

Do you believe in aliens?
No.

What is your secret vice?
I’m a picker and a toenail-biter.

Do you write thank-you notes?
More thank-you texts and thank-you emails.

Which phrase do you most overuse?
I don’t think I’m too guilty of that.

What single thing would improve the quality of your life?
Somebody paying off my mortgage.

Tell us one thing people might not know about you.
My books are much better than anyone would ever expect.

What would you like your epitaph to read?
‘Dame Jenny Eclair.’ And the dates.

Moving, by Jenny Eclair, is published by Sphere, priced £13.99. Jenny’s new tour, How To Be A Middle Aged Woman (Without Going Insane), starts at the end of September: www.jennyeclair.com


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