I'm filling in an interview for the lovely Jess at The Book Bar at the moment - but have stalled on one question. In fact, this question has taken over my whole mind because I'm struggling to pin down the answer.
It is: Which six people (alive/dead/real/fictional) would you invite to a dinner party, and why?
You might think it's easy but I'm telling you, it's not.
First, I went for the fit men approach - Hmmm, George, Brad, Orlando, you can all come. Then I got a bit worried about what Hollywood A-listers would think of our house. I wouldn't want anyone turning their noses up at me. (Also beloved partner might get a bit p'd off with me for making eyes at George Clooney across the table.)
Then, I started thinking about people I could imagine having excellent dinner table stories to make me laugh: Jonathan Ross, Ricky Gervais, Peter Kay - yep, all hilarious, you can definitely come. But what if they got a bit competitive about who was the funniest? What if there was an almighty ego clash right there in my kitchen?
Hmmmm. Tricky. Then I started thinking about guests who'd be able to provide excellent showbiz gossip. Graham Norton - too annoying. Charlotte Church - she'd be a laugh but she'd want Gavin to come too and no offence, but he seems a bit dull.
I was starting to feel a bit shallow. Is this how I choose my friends? People who can make me laugh and provide excellent gossip? Well, actually... Pretty much, yes. Oh dear. Quick, I thought, think of someone historical, to add a bit of gravitas to the occasion. Ummm... Henry VIII? No, that fat bastard would eat all the food. Queen Elizabeth? Looks a bit up herself. Can't imagine her spluttering wine down her nose at Jonathan Ross's jokes. Gandhi? Well... I'd feel I couldn't get properly lashed and cheeky in front of someone like that.
See what I mean? It's difficult. I mentioned it to partner who immediately said, "Oh, I'd definitely invite Tony Benn". And that's the difference between us. He (clearly on a higher intellectual plane) invites a legendary politician. I (on a low, low barely-intellectual-at-all plane) would be put off by Tony Benn's pipe smoke, and pick someone I can have a laugh with.
Maybe I'm taking this a bit too seriously? It's not real, I keep having to remind myself. You aren't really going to have to cook for six famous people, some of whom might be dead/not actually real.
All the same, I'm never going to be able to finish this interview. The only definite is J K Rowling so I can get her tipsy and persuade her to tell me how Harry Potter is going to end. But that's five places left to fill. Suggestions, anyone?
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