Q&A

Here are answers to some of the important questions I’ve been asked in the course of the book publicity merry-go-round…

My earliest memory: My brother Jasper’s birth because before that, I was the cool one. Albeit the only one.

My school report usually said: I was too cynical. Typical.

My first relationship was: With an extremely attractive teddy bear. Unfortunately it was a little one-sided.

My porn star name (first pet, first street): Pearly Union. Honestly.

I don’t like talking about: How I can help your cousin, the Finance Minister, smuggle $100 million out of Nigeria.

My most treasured possession: My double bass. I rarely play it, but displaying it in a corner makes visitors think I’m jazzy and soulful.

My mother always told me: That if I didn’t have anything nice to say, I shouldn’t say anything at all. Regrettably I’ve tended to ignore her advice.

In the movie of my life, I’d be played by: Meryl Streep. She’s very versatile.

I wish I had: World-class soccer skills.

I wish I hadn’t: Dislocated my knee playing soccer.

My most humiliating moment was: In Year Seven, I had a small part in the school play where I only had to walk on and ascend a staircase. On opening night, I tripped halfway up.

My happiest moment was: When I got a book deal, so I could start pretentiously listing my occupation as ‘novelist’.

My guiltiest pleasure is: KFC. A heart attack never tasted so delicious.

My last meal would be: See previous answer.

I’m very bad at: Going to the gym and flirting – two issues which may be related.

When I was a child I wanted to: Draw upside down with a pencil stuck up my nose. That Mr Squiggle character has a lot to answer for.

If I could change one moment of my life, it would be: When I accompanied a friend to the Hey Dad…! audition and didn’t take it seriously. I could’ve been that little fat kid.

The book that changed my life is: Zigzag St, a very funny book by Nick Earls which gave me the confidence to attempt an inferior rip-off.

It’s not fashionable, but I love: Tenpin bowling, the only sport where you listen to loud music and drink alcohol.

If I could live anywhere, I’d choose: The Cro-Magnon period, when my level of body hair was normal.

My worst trait is: My limited grasp of reality.

My best trait is: My limited grasp of reality TV.

My greatest fear is: Being handcuffed to a chair at an André Rieu concert.

If only I could: Have played the title role in National Lampoon’s Van Wilder: Party Liaison. Which is apparently the precondition to marrying Scarlett Johansson.

The hardest thing I’ve ever done was: Stopping laughing at Ben Lee’s ‘I Love Pop Music’.

I relax by: Singing karaoke. Which is far from relaxing for anyone else.

What I don’t find amusing is: Australia’s Funniest Home Video Show, which is child abuse with canned laughter.

I’m always being asked: By beautiful girls to help fix their computers.

If I wasn’t me I’d like to be: Kim Jong Il, who gets to direct films and kidnap anyone he wants to star in them. Sure, my citizens might starve in the meantime, but Nicole Kidman would finally have to make BMX Bandits II.

My worst job was: At a law firm, endlessly stamping page numbers onto documents. That was the full extent of my legal career.

I often wonder: Why people think Southern Cross tattoos are uniquely Aussie, when it’s also featured on the flags of NZ, PNG and Samoa.