Nick Hackworth

My London: Interview with Jake Chapman

Interviews Evening Standard

Where do you live and why?

I live right above the very best curry delicatessen in Brick Lane in London’s very own East End. I live here because it is upwind from the West End of London, which offends my palate.

How long have you lived there?

I have lived here and there for many years, mostly in the East End on account of the above reason.

What advice would you give to a tourist?

First left, second right, carry straight on for 25, 30 minutes and it’s right in front of you, you can’t miss it.

What have been your most memorable London meals?

My most memorable London meal was at a centrally located pasta restaurant in the West End, when my sister Gaby found a cooked cockroach in her arrabiata and mistook it for a dried chilli.

What is your earliest London memory?

I remember waving with my little baby-bingo-wings to passengers on the top deck of the number 11 bus.

What do you miss most when you’re out of London?

The people. They’re so much more vibrant here than anywhere else in the whole world. I especially miss the refugees because their own countries are empty.

What are your favourite home comforts and where do you buy them?

My favourite home comforts are my bed, my duvet, my television, my couch, my table, my chairs, my rugs, my coffee table, my alarm, my computer, my hi-fi, my CDs, my cups, plates, forks, knives, spoons, chopsticks, pots and pans, my fridge, my freezer, my microwave, my desk, my video, my DVD player, my digital camera and my books. You can pretty much buy all these things at any of the high-street stores.

What would you do if you were Mayor for the day?

I would order the police to round up all the people I don’t like and have them hung, and then I would forgive them and erect a memorial.

What is your life philosophy?

Have fun, be true to yourself, love others if they’re vaguely nice to you, be positive. I can’t answer this hippie shit because it makes my skin crawl. It’s as apt as asking, ‘What is your life maths?’ or ‘What is your life biology?’ What were the last books you bought and where do you buy them? I get my books from Waterstone’s, Blackwell’s, or, or at Christmas and sometimes for my birthday.

What aftershave do you wear?

Why? What have you got?

How do you get around town?

I get around by bus, Tube, Docklands Light Railway, overground trains, minicabs, taxis, bicycle and walking between combinations of the aforementioned.

What was the last play you saw in London and did you enjoy it?

The last play I saw in London was Tonight’s the Night, and I enjoyed it emphatically. It was both serene and moving because my girlfriend Rose is an avid Rod Stewart fan, and she screamed and wept inconsolably for a whole week afterwards, boohoo.

What are your future projects?

Me and Dinos are considering teaming up with Danny Boyle to make a horror film because he’s a really good director, ha ha ha ha ha ha ha ha.

What was the last CD you bought? Which music shops do you use?

For ear music I usually frequent Virgin or HMV because their selections are so very eclectic. The last CD I bought was by The Streets because I appreciate GCSE creative writing.

Do you have a favourite pub?

My favourite pub is The Golden Heart on Commercial Street. It’s so very special because it sells alcoholic drinks unreservedly and they like me there.

Who’s in your secret address book?

Tesco, Blockbuster, Argos, The Body Shop, Threshers. I’m the last to know if I have a secret address book.

Where were the last three places you went on holiday?

The last three places I went on holiday were, in chronological order, Goa (India), Ibiza (Spain) and Burgh Island (Devon, United Kingdom). I found myself in Goa but lost myself in Ibiza. Burgh Island (below) was just plain confusing, an Agatha Christie weekend for cul-de-sac nouveaux riches including a shoal of Poirots, a gaggle of Gatsbys, a murder of DH Lawrences and a flock of Amy Johnsons. Anyway, you had to be there...