Interviewing A.A Gill at the Auckland Writers and Readers Festival
I have always found his columns totally engaging. I love his wit, his intellect and brilliant turn of phrase. I have to admit there has also always been this selfish indulgence and slightly ugly side of me that has found pleasure, in a safe waiting room on the other side of the world, in reading his brutally honest reviews where he can simply dismantle, crucify and rip every shred of a restaurant’s efforts into confetti.
Now I do not by any stretch particularly enjoy public speaking. However whether I enjoy it or not, it is part and parcel of what I do. It’s sort of a love hate scenario. I hate the thought of it all, but love the feeling of taming or overcoming my nerves. If I have a chopping board, knife and a fish in front of me and I’m there to talk food and demonstrate a recipe, I can natter on happily and I’m relatively comfortable in my environment. In fact surrounded by the props of my trade and head full of stories and anecdotes I actually quite enjoy entertaining an audience.
However interviewing Mr. AA Gill in front of a very large crowd at the Auckland Aotea Centre for an hour and a half was a completely different kettle of fish. I said yes to the request for a number of reasons. Firstly it’s great to be asked, secondly meeting Adrian in person is a once in a lifetime opportunity, and then lastly if I had said no I would have beaten myself up time and time again for not having the courage or guts to overcome my fears.
Read the full, wonderful story on Al Brown's Blog.