If I could change anything in the North East, a faster train link to London would be nice, because I pop down there for meetings quite a lot – but then again I like that it’s quite far away from the capital, too far to commute so the house prices stay this side of reasonable.
I would never change the chip shop at the end of my street. It’s amazing. Might seem a tiny thing to nominate to this category of ‘unchangeable thing’ but you’ve got to taste them. Actually, I might have to finish this interview later, back in a sec...
What can't I do without? Ooooh! Should I say my wife? I should, shouldn’t I? Something about her giving me support and keeping me grounded. But then again there is also my big chair in the living room that does the same thing. DAMN THIS IS HARD!
If I had a spare £1 million, I’d buy a house, a nice car, have a party, give the rest to charity. And possibly buy a monkey.
I have mentioned my beloved Gosforth Chippy already, but the Fat Buddha is also a place where I can be found sweating after having too much nasi goreng.
What makes me mad – Intolerance, ignorance, and the way my wife ‘loses’ her phone every night before she goes to bed and makes me ring it. Every night. I mean, come on! Just keep your phone close to you! Who doesn’t do that? But, you know, intolerance and ignorance are probably worse...
None of my achievements make me proud. I think that sort of thinking leads you to resting on your laurels. They are overwhelmingly fun at the time and always appreciated but you’ve got to keep moving forward. Maybe the little kitchen thing I built for my daughter, which had more parts in it than an actual kitchen. Took me about four hours. And a lot of swearing. And did she appreciate it?
My tipple of choice is Thornbridge Kipling South Pacific Pale Ale. I’m in danger of becoming one of those real ale bores but thankfully they have found a way to make it hip and trendy by calling it craft ale these days. But it is amazing, and responsible for some of the most dramatic weight gains I have experienced in the last few years.
My last holiday was Center Parcs, last year. We are going again in September. My wife doesn’t like flying so it’s our next best choice. And it has the benefit of actually being more expensive than a foreign holiday, so that’s nice.
I adore Modern Family. It’s so incredibly well written and intricate, I watch about three episodes every day. Then the wife has a list of detritus that insults both my eyes and intelligence. All the usual reality tat, the TOWIES and Chelsea thingy.
If I wasn’t a comedian and writer, I’d do something to do with the sea – I used to be in the merchant navy. Maybe a yacht captain, or a pirate in Somalia. They’ve got the weather for it haven’t they?
If I could swap places with one person for a day it would be Tom Hanks, because he’s a legend and one of those celebrities who is properly loved for his body of work. Just to see what it is like being able to walk into any restaurant and get a table.
My fancy-dress costume is Jedi. Always Jedi.
My definition of luxury is a hotel room where you get a bathrobe. You’ve arrived then. And it usually means I can have a hot bath without anyone banging on the door to get in so I can uncomfortably watch them defecate.
What I learned in the merchant navy is to always, always have a spare pair of socks and underpants in your carry on luggage. A lost suitcase can happen to anyone but then you are stuck either going commando or squeezing yourself into another man’s pants, which is never comfortable, no matter how kindly they were donated.