« Desert Island Discs

Sue Perkins

2017-07-09 | 🔗
Kirsty Young's castaway is the comedian and TV presenter Sue Perkins. She and her friend Mel Giedroyc first appeared as a comedy duo at the Edinburgh Fringe over 20 years ago and together they presented the first seven series of The Great British Bake Off. Born at the end of the 1960s, Sue grew up in Croydon, the eldest of three siblings. By her own description a "shy and awkward" child, she nonetheless made it to Cambridge University to study English. She and Mel met at a Footlights open mic gig soon after she'd arrived. Their first joint high-profile success was landing a new live daytime programme on Channel 4 called Light Lunch, which turned them into household names. Sue also formed a second presenting partnership, making historical food programmes with Giles Coren. When she was 38 she was diagnosed with a benign brain tumour which left her unable to have children. Sue has been in a relationship with the TV presenter Anna Richardson since 2013. Producer: Cathy Drysdale.
This is an unofficial transcript meant for reference. Accuracy is not guaranteed.
This is the bbc blue on Kirsty young thanks for downloading this podcast of desert island discs from BBC radio, for this is standard edition of the original broadcast for right reasons: the music choices of shorter than in the radio broadcasts from information about the programme. Please visit bbc dotcom, dont, uk, slash radio for. Mom castaway this week. Is the tv presented super seconds her ready, wit and genuine warmth, she is one of our most recognisable small screen stars playing. her trade for twenty years. Now it was of course.
The irresistible recipe of steaming great puts in saucy quips that ensue her household names stasis along with her long term, comedy partner male get voyage. She made the great to speak of so much more than just another disposable tele format. Turning it into, rating sensation and a national obsession these is she wears her considerable celebrity with rye aplomb and her travel, odyssey, documentaries and best selling memoir hint. at some one king as much for understanding as approval. She says I am an appalling, appalling softy but somehow somewhere along the line, I've learned how to hide it hide sentimentality and vulnerability? I it was words bluster it for to fight against the outside world, take away the words and I am lost so welcome supermarkets and plenty of words today
when you think about a sojourn onto this island all alone? How does it leave you feeling pure terror. Doesn't it because I'm never alone, I've I've rather happily life, where I'm always with another, a partner with friends and family when my work is incredibly sociable and mine entire reason for being, is to connect with people and to understand what makes and take- and be around palm trees and water. Much as I love nature will be so disorienting, and I have us of all This'll shimmer of anxiety, thinking about it's gone into. Showbiz legends know that you and mail famously turned down the great british bake off how how are you with decision making generally terrible, absolutely terrible? I'm such a prevaricates here I only see grey and I'm very glad
I was very glad, I'm I'm not responsible wholly for my own career choices. We know you are not, as you famously said, with mellon in that statement that ran almost top of the news at you are not following the door poll. is going off to this new, seize on channel for Paul Hollywood, of course, maybe staying with the bbc. I mean how much of a rynch was it or- and I wonder after so many cities of doing it- was that a bit That's all sums but really I've I feel like I could do with a bit of freedom. Now is a complicated, brill, actually, that lots of things going on, I think, an extraordinary chunk of my life and shepherded me through is one sort of continuum and in china, in a seven used, it were full of quite a lot of upheaval and my own life. I think we were right out of puns. I'm not gonna lie kirsty, there's only so many in the tank. I think when we
had. A croatian bum am, I said, rather loudly split, and I thought I have really really something very bottom of what is possible in my indiana athens Upham every every back upon every hungarian ring palm was just mind in mind in mind and we did achieve weak and some of the palms. They were her absolutely horrific what it was in Aragon, arable, really already off with, but I would have carried on doing it. I think it was a really sweet show. I love the crew and I love the director and I love the bakers like I said I loved all of it, but there was one. Point out be honest way. I too thick can I do this, for however, which is when I had come back from my trial. Those and it was a pragmatist meekin river and I had been travelling from them. Often heard she to the source in tibet, and four days before I came to think of tat
I've been with first family at the meeting in tibet who had never. dusty and no running water and they would have a yak, but and barley and that's all they ate and they would meditate and be in bed by six and informers. Later I was an attempt by somebody was crying cause they couldn't find the packet of marriage glass, I am, I did think How can I rationalize these two worlds? Botz amiss it and I also wish it well, there's no point in rancor. Let's turn to them music super can tell me about the first one, we're gonna here this morning. Then what was you? gas is off continuously. Where is I'm not talking is one of dancing. I love dancing and I'm not a great dont, sir. I think he might have witnessed some. Why dont think I'm in its? is it not? I think that would be one word I don't really think my hogs. So I'm like this sort of electrocuted octopus when they get the dance floor and I'm not a young buck anymore, but it doesn't matter. I will just go,
with the same vehement peppers I had when I was in my twenties, and this track is Lastly, you make me feel open brackets mighty with closed brackets. I think all the dance tracks I love. This is the one that is most likely to everyone home moving their hit slackened gyroscopes, so I just go for it
that was sylvester and made me feel mighty real you a memoir spectacles when it came out in twenty fifteen. I read it the time it was. It was funny enough not to be safe to read on public transport. You know that ass. I might laugh exclusively at any point, you're able to rights in a very funny. What makes you love.
I have been a broods taste- both sometimes a reading. Nuanced relief nests satirical kind of sentence- can make make a fool but equally just a really well timed bob do remain just a beautiful beauty. I want accidentally did a book slipping the fridge it sounded like a frigid or opening, and I love for fifteen minutes. I thought I was going to die and I think the great thing about humorous it connects you to your child yourself are not safe, base about jokes snobbish about where they come from and if some makes me laugh. I accept it was it is an unpaid truly grateful. What are you looking for? A new were come in. We you mentioned the me come delta to you, ve been to says vietnam is china, india, alaska, making these documents that take imagine what you must be shooting those for two or three months. Yes, at a time is a huge
movements, you'd away from friends and family. I imagine often quite difficult conditions shooting them. What's the appeals, you. Why do you want you put yourself through that? I asked myself a lot and people who care about may ask that a lot and sort of perverse need. Always in me to push myself. I come back always with You know a set of payload a cold I or some such but but I get from it is us of connecting with people who I sort of practical farmers must put not my. My life is far removed from those, as is humanly possible to be. I can pick a switch and I have light I couldn't turn on the china have warm water is one when we were travelling and we were in rotten carrion, northern cambodia and Translators just left,
the current tribal went to sea and in order to understand to get the translation across would need to go from english to compare from commit or not proper dilated from that toilet, correct, but the neutral say you're stuck in this clearing with thirty one looking at you and you to find a way of saying we all the same, and it was a fault god, but did this in the end, but also I managed to sit down, tells me to sit down and matches sit down an enormous pile of pig pooh and that was a real icebreaker may thought I was a spectacular idiot, but through just looking just looking at them. told in their hands and laughing. I managed to spend knee three days with them and I was right king through tat. She forest with one I'm holding my hand, and I just love this woman. So much for how can I feel strongly about strange with him? I don't share language, and, to set up a relief
feel I've known you my life. She muttered something back like you find long piper. Remember Two months later, when the translation came back on, the show was ready to be sort of edited invoiced. The roadmap to do need to watch this amaze me I think I've known you, my life and the translation came back and she said I think I've known you all my life and that's. Why do because in all the hardship and madness and all the filth, this just this reminder that we're all the same and there's this reminded the EU can have these immense. Found moments of solidarity. am I a night, that's what I was looking for. I will what music super can tell me about this. I features in this city were struck by ever remember hearing this lonely Donovan's rock on line and my dad. Right dancer and it removed me of him. This track bills and its sense of excitement that I get. If I go clubbing when you're waiting for the deep base to kick in its about waiting is about
pleasure, delay its about seeing for me my dad just gently, Sort of balancing up and down and caroling all of us kids to get ready for the big moment when the song explodes- and I just love It- It reminds me of family and I can see off room without off swirling seventies carpet and the stink of sulphur Ben toss, pies simmering in the nineteen seventy seven and over cook, cabbage set of limb conveys an just, pure joy having the privilege of these people being my blood relatives
not anyway, I'm going down the road that ninety nine run. I do. I have a nice dinner vine growing eating you ve got to find it. I can find a community legislation on Iraq has every right. Maybe you know you're going to miss you now those providing funding. I think I'm gonna see me now, but it was lonely. Goma, Gmbh, unroll, common blowing. You surely do enjoy that suit. Perkins you'll be. Did you were born at the end of the sixties? You were brought up in croydon you ve described. It is less of a police, moreover punchline at you're dead. Was a car dealer and your mom and was a secretary just tell me more about them, so they had
extraordinary. Strewed unreal. an eccentric marriage that was abuse The full thing to behold My mom is the, sleep right, I'm very a safe and my dad was sensitive and funny what they shared, and I think what welded them together apart from love, pure love, was it total lack of self esteem and that I look on it and I think, I sort of see that as the cement they sort of shepherded each other through decades and decades in decades, and three unruly kids and the highs and lows of life and death I sort of felt to march he had relied on data. He was he he would keep lists and lists of what anything or he would keep notes on the fluctuations in temperature, when the sun rose and when the sunset he collected
stamps and would make huge homeless about watermarks and perforations. He would look everything, because It was a way of providing oda in a universe that is essentially chaotic and your mother was a catastrophes, are a total catastrophes, are so during the anthrax. Cashier opened all of her male with their with marigold gloves. Did I really do? Is I read that in your book and of course I laughed, but I wasn't sure. If you know is all true, it's all you know and and would ring me up her and when I set college I just had an a machine message which said: just so. You know the latest things going on in london. Is that some flash the headlights, you and you know Now when you stop the car, though caught them, though, pull out the corn contact I didn't wear she'd right that I think she did in her head happened.
The time and everyone who was driving was going to be a sort of subjected to this, and what about the we see yourself? You you said that as a kid who were previously pale and perpetually odd and terribly shy those this thursday. exist to this present day just time pressure, bishop masking them? I mean that's as we can. hopefully in terms of maturity, don't those feelings don't go away, but you learn cooking mechanism. How would you feel you ought not to be. same as everyone else is not that sense of outside looking it I think that was a peculiar thing to being a teenager, but of course it sort of endures. I'm sure everybody would say that. Sometimes I felt like an outsider, because I was a woman sometimes because I dont have kids sometimes because I'm gay sometimes because I'm twenty anymore there's always a reason to be outside the gloves, and so he went to a catholic school. One point ads: you get on with the nuns over the nuns
well, I mean I thought you'd be hard, pressed. I think, too, to listen to any story of her of a young girl and nuns that turned out. Well, I'm in the nuns were terrifying, labored sort of appear. Like sort of strange elderly, bats and corral you and make you do things to do that. In my case, it was founded and may it it was I'm it straight to think I'm in this is it. This is the mid seventies, but he were you hate. If you, if you ate your food, left handed than than they would sweep down, and with a sort of daily says, like a daily trauma for little girl to go into that invited. I don't see it as such. I think again, the feeling of being watched being scrutinised, which isn't particular healthy. Yes, I suppose you know minds greater than mine. Could then extrapolate as to? Why do what I do for a living now, but I do get my own back though I was eating them has been for,
the ets and mashed potato, which was delivered robin lavishly from one of those ice cream, scapes ervic, semicircle of sort of rock hard starch must be put on a plate. I fix it and systematic dorothy was walking past and slipped on it and skidded shouted. Her leg gets through highlights four brief. Second, I am already arisen out at last how someone music super seconds lobotomy, that thing on the outside looking in, and I don't think anybody describes what not feeling is like better than morrissey. I love the smiths by picked house. It is now because the larry, I'm a son and heir of a shock this this is criminally vulgar. I'm the sun air of nothing in particular, ambition, that's funny more. He just provides searing guitar moments that just elevate not song in some entreaty treaty special and I don't think Animal can listen to smithsonian, not
scream your lungs out in recognition of what it's like to feel out How soon is no? That was the smiths unsupervised. What made you decide to study english at cambridge genuinely. because one of my teacher told me that I should say
there's something other than english at polytechnic or maybe not bother. and all my life. I have teresa from told I can't I will I will be telling you that was at the poverty of expectation at your school or was it the belief that you were not up to the job? The combination of of of the two. I certainly a school was not a consistent people so you report cards would have been sort of always at least with the exact he'd authorize. Exactly that and I certainly was unruly sickly in science and mass, which I didn't fully embrace, am, I think, because there was not huge bandwidth between meeting well into the aid and the ease. I think they know so at amount to very much. I mean one of my report, cause. I remember saying. What susan lacks an intelligence she
makes up foreign stupidity, I'm not sure I'm not joking and stayed with me. You know I don't u frame that and put it in a blue will vote for it for for a long time. I had that that thing, but I've heard about you know it. I need to go to a college and not doing a shot, was on my way for awhile Am I just sort of assumes I've been told? I couldn't let myself slightly out of school, and I started to read a lot on my own and I remember, my dad and sit down. What's what's the best university another my parents went to invest it might as well. I think I think cambridge is the best. And so I said or eleven. and because I was so unaware of what that would involve, and I was unaware of the magnitude of it now there wasn't it pressure on my shoulders to do anything I'll, be anyone. I did it, but you had did you have to work very hard to get him. Did you have to release of apply yourself with determination to get the results with the thing is I might
I drive me for his best camel coat and got in the car, which is inaccurate, knock it off persian. We sort of potted up to cambridge and I've got an interview and we just thought we'd be therefore half an hour? I meant it transpired that actually is a whole day of injuries and an exam and those interviews finds they were with the sort of making of me because they got to see. who I was and because, I had been spending a lot of times in a really considering what I felt about weathering highs. What I felt about test the devil's or I felt by hamlet, was able to talk, but it's so there She gave me an offer that was achievable. It was initiate when you went there- and I understand that at the time you're dead said too don't become push. Yes. Ship sailed. That's how did you fit in when you first got there. I also welcome the beauty of the place and I'd, know context.
That kind of magistrate really- and I felt very by us at the beginning, but very quickly. I just meeting people that I fell in love with so the first moments I walked into my room. Might I did said: do you want to share rehman? I thought I might as well, because I know somebody then, and then this my dad's flame, head, welshwoman, arrived called Sheila. Am I shed room with her in the first year and I just love the bones and she thought that everybody from the south of england known their own pony and She used to speak in wealth quite a lot and we were so different, but we just loved each other and from that moment on I'd, just relaxed in everyday life. college, and I met the people there I will know- and about my life and how did a young woman who had described himself as a kid as shy end up at footlights, state because of shiloh, and because of this with this,
strange compulsion in me to do what, expected to challenge myself. Did it take on dad? Did she tell you, you were funny that you needed to share the funny, no one, and I think I think she cheated. She found me faintly idiotic, not necessarily funny, and there were those a company like going on, I am, I said: I want to go. If you want to do it and I support, image. Has just do a slob I'll, give you ten ten, a fortune. Anthem. Could she challenge me because felt like the most exciting and frightening thing to do. I did it and I stood that's nice whenever It she lambs will jumper under single, very bright spotlight and just imagine I see some stuff- and that was the first time ever stood in front of an audience. What was the sensation? Fear prickling of fear, giving to an extraordinary sense of freedom that mom? Oh my god, I am. I am going to do this and then you
it, a free and you just profited by the currents in case the audience You don't know where it's going, but you just have this blind faith that everything's going to be ok. And where some people might ascribe. That is due to a feeling of to pure terror to not know where you're going to not know the destination we for me. I just find that that's my safes by couplet some madman. I sound properly insane, but when it Well, when you just improvising and playing with an audience it's just I'd say liberating. I love it. Lets you force what are we gonna work now. This has a very, very special place in my heart. This is t rex to listen. She boy this truck reminds me of an old polish. The Medina Melanie petrol sometimes we will just leave messages on one another, which is the thing
In this track, two years ago, that was t rex and twentieth century boy, a super consumers. This beguiled
The eu between you and me I'll get right when we watch you on screen it's a kind of sisterly partnership. Like all good double acts. You seem to not just build a finnish each other sentences, but make the best of each other and make each other I'm guessing funny. then you might be if you were just on your own, I mean you been together. What thirty years is a partner vs next year, at least thirty years, since we met in that at that gig that very cake, and what was your first impression of male firstly, a notice was she had some dusky pink dams eight hold the aims. I just thought I want those more live, wanted anything in this world and I looked up and saw the shock of of us of a blue blonde hair missiles of this profusion of like a broken piano, and this hearty laugh and I just felt compelled to never met before She does move into orbit and I his we'd know each other forever from that really and people talk a lot about falling in love and romantic relationship, but it took about data.
nick friendships and how powerful they can be in a way we have Seeing each other through such highs and lows, and above and beyond our working relationship, we are friends and we love each other and we want the best for each other when you were first gigging together. Nineteen. Ninety three was the first edinburgh festival you did, and this was at the time of the emerging talents like JO brand and Steve coogan and Lee evans, go for you that first festival there's a big, more to put yourself up on stage but mercy fashion. We were total shambles. It's a wonder that we managed to make anything of ourselves because we so haphazard, you know all partnership looks in what we look at each other. We never have. We never look outwards. It's like two twins and caught just marvel. Just marvelling at each other and I Sometimes it's our greatest strengthen our greatest failing, because I think we ve been more able to sort of see the wood
for the trees, and I think I'll careers would have gone a bit smoother, but we decided we wanted to do and were quite late in the day and the only time they had left this fanny was Ten o five in the morning said molly. Ten, o clock, which is a time that people can remember to be it. The ten o five We emphasise writing the show we put. Nobody was in the audience and perform to two people, three people for the entirety of fats, festival, until I think maybe day, twenty and an article came Talking about new acts on the fringe and we were mentioned, and then a little room was full by ninety Ninety seven you'd made it on television. You were the name, light lunch as a tv show, evokes a certain sort of misty I'd fondness and in certain people have to admit to be one of those people in it was ninety ninety seven on channel four, and that was really your big break. I have been told. it was a considerable degree of chaos between
is a partnership, including you can put me right. If this is not something you I'm in it, they don't have a clue. when to buy them. Underwear is that I didn't. I set my boys unaware that, and I think the production company had never come across anybody. Anyone let the pair because we were so We are unaware of that that decision the chess hands elements of television that we had to have set up make up, and you know I had to be properly styled and you had to have a proper footing brought in a protein. Wasn't good idea is we're old, gray pants, but happy in old gray pants down. is the way we were. This is why I love now is that people on the show they gave us. incredible break, but they were very well put together very west, london kind of media people and they slick slick, at the end of the first because it seem to be going well. They bought us each product purse. I looked at this product person. I just thought who's, not fool,
now. Let's tits happen, is it who's not fool and with, saying anything we both gave it to the charter shopman next. And it was only a month later that we confessed to each other and that's happened. A billion times in my relationship with my creed, of course, when everything happened with bake off need to ring and say what you to do, because I knew what she was going to do. It was me the question of how we look at this thanks, what music soup back and tell me about what we can do. You know this is the fifth of your choices this morning. Kate, bushes, an artist I have loved loved since I was a child. Her music has always been with me. When I talked about I'm getting in cambridge is hounds of love. I would listen to and I would and the record over and over and over and over- and I love because she's wistful and sentimental.
But because she loves family, a lover because so much of her stuff is rooted in nature and the environment, which is to feel in or of bird songs, on the rustle of trees. This is moments of pleasure because its So exquisite bottles, It's just about looking back on one's life, to cherry picking those the single moments that he paused and your heart. So. soon.
Soon so that was cape In moments of pleasure, your very quotable person super seconds and yet another funny. An interesting thing you ve said is that being gay, is about the forty seven most interesting thing in my life at you are part of that generation, as witnessed credible sea change in society's attitude towards our sexuality growing up. Did you know anyone who was gay. You know, I don't think I did.
I don't think I did. And then, when I was sixteen, I met this boy and I've completely fell in love with him and. We will get us of six and a half years of and we really loved each other and then I supposed of college and He he was away, he was working and he said I I'm not very well on an empty going through some stuff and after he was going through. Was the same stuff I'm going through and we were both gay and. Some people might not recognise that. Is there a way of despite gaze, not real, he was so real and it was sexual relationship. It wasn't that we will be heading one another. But slowly we evolved. I came to my evolution quite late, you know, and I was I, For I was doing them as such
vision, education, show an besides my french colleagues, not what's no what's happening. I just I can't sleep. I can't eat and my friend said you're in love. I just thought I'd good. I just want to throw up and I was and it came to I think it was an unrequited passion and you wanted to throw up because he saw a lower. The woman had thought. That's what it is you said did I know anybody was so far my frame of reference there when it presented to me as a truth. I had the violent reaction. and then it all made sense and because I can t quite lazy, my twins is like having, Second adolescents. You know you think you ve got through being a teenager, I was united, stroppy teenager, I acted out, but I wasn't. I didn't really were bell, and yet, when I was in, My twenties had the second sort of Signed a moment I read about that's when I showed hair. I died my head blue when I went nuts and I started to king and going out all night in was it
drug quite easy. You dont quite handling in your memoirs. You talk about drinking. Happily, we yes. Because I was shy and I would from being the shy specimen room to being the person standing on a table dancing and I became very, very sick. I got stomach cancer. And I'm great that stomach cancer, because I think Is too easy to ease to be that drunk actually alive? I'm not sure that I would have escaped its clutches. And what about the fluid nature of sexuality I mean. Do you think you'd been a different generation, the generation no, that is coming. The sexual maturity. You would have felt the needs to come a lesbian, or do you think you just would have been a lot of big nuno dead? Absolutely I mean I, I love and yet and hugely cheered by the fact that my my god daughter is, school and and she's fourteen and some of her friends identifies pan sexual. What even, is there
so I don't know, but it did, but it doesn't matter produce just like a good for you. I've always thought it's a spectrum, and I've been slightly dumbfounded in and made few despite the fact that I was forced to make a binary choice because its it's always about the person, But for me I don't, I don't have any regrets. You know I'd away, I try to do in interviews and stuff and I am missing having less anyway. It's just downplayed is a thing. the more I condemn play at the moment? I want everyone else. Come it's not why? Why should people have to go through this painful stressful, archaic ritual of bring home to their parents and telling them that their having sex, because that's over doing you know that you know and it is you officially come out to paint. I will listen, my magnet friends, era who has no truck with with with the sort of stuff said. Look if you don't tell them, then I'm gonna go tell them. So the gauntlet was laid down. So I run up. My eye was site. Twenty eight I run up my mama said mom. Can I
I come home for tee tomorrow, just like Jews, eating toast and I'm sure are crunching little shit don't come home. I said by just you know you wanna, come home and to talk to you and dad and have t sit down and chat about staff and canada month. Change went this because you're gay was furious and I was like My it might be one that can wait, and that was coming. Everyone should have the experience of just Mom eating tastes gang I gotta can wait. Big were to tell me about next piece of music repressions, what you gonna, here's your six. Sometimes I think I talk sociable. To avoid silent and solitude because they times were already feel the stuff that's happened to me: His percolated stop mars is the peace, the architecture which is very much based on another, pain and resolution pain and resolution pain. Resolution accounts
together and then a release, that's what life is books, but listen to it. I give myself permission to cry on a give myself mission to go to those spaces. The words can't possibly hope to describe
it was, Parts of police stop at martyrs, seeing there were an kirkby and james bowman with academy of ancient music conducted by christopher hawk, would sue perkins, it's not every cast away. That I would ask what their most revolt Sing that of uprooted nemesis, going to ask you put terrible things in my mouth along. Well, you know I'm ok.
I did a show with the food critic, jars, corn, conceive sizes and, in the course of that I wish I'd love to. I have The restoration dish of britain batter pudding with spinal cord o ivy peacock. was like shoe. Lever are beaten, duck tongues. Philippine tubes was interesting, I mean is there anything you refuse. You know I have, but I've no capacity refuse. We don't have travelled laws and you go the village and somebody offers you something is possibly a rat, but if offered it, all they ve got it. beyond rude and ignorant, saying that the purpose of these documentaries with social history again food. One of the caesars but victorians and the a set of blood tests that you did. You do them. Every week yesterday, that sort of Kinda the show was that we would get a blood test going in and then we would eat that diet,
or weak, and that your blood should be measured the and see what effect the copy ceasing of meat and drinking of alcohol has on your system and then a moment's came when you had the test on and what if the medics, the doctrine full said, and I need to talk to you about something else? Can you tell me so the victorian show that we did. They want to focus on women and they did a common profile and, as you said, I was asked to stay behind on adjusted the giving of it. And in the small thirty clinical white little side room, this woman said Your blots, our very awry, and you have a brain, tumor and. it's always a delay for me. Anybody. We re now that I consider the epic destruction this tiny little, rice shaped thing in my kitchen. Glance has caused. And so I don't think very much and I went away. I don't even think I did anything about it for months, because I didn't
Want to know she had I think that it would lose benign of course, put. Nine is very different from non symptomatic. So I had a benign and extremely symptomatic brent, cheaper, which then started team kind of make. Its presence felt I then went and had an mri eventually end, I went and had a consultation with a very eminent endocrinologist. We ask me I had kids, I said no identity said: would you can't have them. And then I went out, and I think that did crying. I run light my axe. I sat on the pavement. Damn it the beginning of a very very dark time, and, of course, when you got something in your head, you don't know what you're feeling is real or not, and I got diagnosed when o thirty, eight percent. I was forty. I literally destroyed my life from the inside out and it was only
Months, go when I went for second opinion and started medication and in contrast to my blood sunset, but you, behaved in ways that would confound people he lofty and he must have been in such a manner. The confusion and anxiety, I see and delirium did you do something that you regret? Am I just lost? It does look it was like to think I'm accountable for everything. I do good and bad. But I'll never understand how I did summer thinks I did. you know, I was half my life. I ended a relationship by one day be cattle With depression, the next I'd be at heart attack levels of anxiety. I would One day be showing woman profile that was just zero, zero estrogen, they re pedestrian zero testosterone with huge levels of protracted I'm an exciting. pretty normal and because it puts up and shut up
because this is another challenge that that must be met. I did nothing about it. and it's a say it's taken this time to kind of look at the wreckage Together to say, sorry and to make amends and to be healthy, to be better and that's a lifelong bottle. I think this condition is there's no continuum, but god I'm lucky because it might be symptomatic but its benign. What what I'm thinking about it is that that united, the demands that have put on you professionally, will you it is well known as you are and where you are scrutinised. Indeed, when you are reported for things that you might see or things you might do or how you act and react doubling the condition you have that's a very, very difficult professional position that you are in and have you thought about stepping away? I think now, I'm sorry to get that position, but I think. I didn't have enough self love for such a long time to take it seriously, It was only
through seeing somebody I really loved having a non benign brain tumor. Yeah me too, but the clash, the collision between The personal and the public that the most profound example of that and one that caused me. Such unimaginable pain, was when the book Now I had written about the pine tree with I have and the day the papers. Ahold of that story. They published it on the front page. I think it. Five national newspapers was the day The day after that, I discovered that my dad had a terminal branching. And so it was baker star in brain she Michel or whatever, and I stood in a niece agent and I just thought: gonna lose my legs because no one knows what's going on just wanted to scream saying, but I'm ok, my dad isn't a and was immensely painful. This extraordinary brill mom who taught me how to write a bike and
made up stories when, when I hadn't mumps and you had such a strongly precise, brilliant funny way about him start it's a loose his mind. Will they rather brilliantly ascertain whether keeps it may be? we was multi died. Is it your daddy? we promised you'd be play, chess tat was a brilliant jasper, am is, and he meet me in twenty minutes and they oh come on I'll girl, try and then he beat me and nine to sleep asked him for that So it has been a very challenging time and I think the best thing I can do to honour him get myself sorted and take that time. Knowing it sonata life, in condition to at least make myself right. Let's have some music, soon tell me what this is. This is extraordinary track for me. This isn't norman's carbonic trade is one them me cry a lot, but
also when I was going through this really, difficult time. When I fourteen and ended this big relationship and going mad. I would listen to it and then use later. I saw a picture nitre and Trade is walking his dark and I love dogs, but you have to be looking his dog pass, the exact flattened I living it. When I was losing my mind? the synchronicity. The universe is a source of wonderment.
My special track for ever and ever saw perfectly right. That was nick drake and northern sky sue. Super can see your partner is the document you make an tv presented, Anna Richardson and you ve been together, but three years you ve said she's good, allowing me to have fun. so, when you are not working how you enjoy free time, we just play it's a lot of stress involved in life and she's, just been extremely good at touring, that's sight of me that wants to analyze and that wants to fret and
the commission too, the toddler in the same way that Malta's we love this being in nature? I'm happy. is when I'm in a word or a forest, and I can do so I wasn't bluebells or wonder if I should, that mushroom, without any degree of knowledge about which mushrooms and poisonous or not We know we love animals and it's a lovely thing really wait until about work my job, is my job got. I love it, but I really he d leave it at the front door, because the commissioning structure of the BBC or I tv holds no interest for me and office politics. it's a reproach to do. I do, but then I can behind and go right, what's for dinner, gonna score the dog thing. Yet Those of us who got the dog thing in our life feel very strongly about it, and- and I see photographs of you sometimes with your dog and it seems to be somewhere to some people, but it seems to be a big thing in your life huge thing in my life. I never had pets because, where this at my parents perfectly. My mom just
thought that they would pay mountain hive, so the catastrophe rising parent thought you know what gets if had a cat would get to meet. get toxic plasma says that's when I got it I can't believe how choice it was. My door, help me through the dark his time. I want my doctor. A bit of me died pot It is another talking my life now and sort of vague silly coquettish rescue months. It's just brilliant. give it animal a second chance to re homer a dog is a great thing is a great deal of speculation about what you will do next, given that you are not going to crisis with your presence on bake off what what are you gonna do next professionally, as ever, really know, recording is big trip to india, which was very, very challenging and went very shortly after dad died and enter the himalayas, and that was a place of total isolation, and it really, They really probably met me up. There's. No, Grace, it's all on camera, altitude, sickness and through
often crying and really feeding at one with nature and being profoundly kind of overruled by at all, next, I button some more travel and I am very hopeful that moment. I will do putting about but a continued, exactly what yet it's all to play. Oh, it's all right. It's ok, pressing about bbc one prime time on imagining possibly primetime plotting, it sounds like some of the review clause in the title right, primetime crap. I get the impression that food has played a big part in your life. Not, the cakes, but all the stuff we were hearing about if you would Imagine a desert island dish. What what would be the thing that would be you sort of final meal? What has been the most simple afore I head off? Yes, oh I mean oh that's difficult! I've been lucky to eat it, so many brilliant places and try to most extraordinary rarefied cuisine but I would really be true to my heart and go far to something that reminded me of home. I would
Therefore, my mom soups bitter, really good, hearty lentil, say I'd, go for rose chicken dinner by have yorkshire puddings because come on it doesn't have to just be for beef and I'd ends. ah, then, with a trifle proven wanna go what a blaze of trifling I'm coming to you, a nice guy about your final piece of music than what we gonna hear: sluts peace, lawful plastic, philip glass, is just a gateway to so many instinct different types of music, but not picking him because of the very particular evening in edinburgh and animal script. Ghana- and it was a difficult time and I thought I think she likes that it glass and philip glasses play just one of those moments where everything comes together. We down and we were in the circle of the king's theater and philip glass, and he played one now I was on his favorite piece of music. One of my favorites too. Having to even look at each other. We were holding hands. cried her eyes out and not moment that piece of meat, was being played just for us
all the horror of sometimes what it's like to be alive, is. Just wonderful,
I was for the class playing the opening from class works at super seconds times. We should give the books I give everyone,
the bible and the complete lack of shakespeare, and they gets take a third book what he was going to be, how to clone a dog. So I'm gonna see what you're luxury isn't that, what it is it related to that? Yes, what is it so? My talks, air sea dogs, hair you might- the whole abolishing I'm not giving. It is well known. They find a way. Love always finds a casting my son. My luxury item would be lit, but of hair, from my north sea, ex beagle ethical but would be nice both of those things you must have them find a way, did you think they wouldn't get through? I was really worried. Ninety because there isn't a book called how to claim your dog, but there might be in an act of blind faith. I'm going to imagine that somebody somewhere at least writing that, because we speak which track of the eight. Would save. I would save most pleasure by kate bush, because
she's the artist that has followed me through my entire life and listen that track, I'd be able to think of all that shit represents and all the ways that she's been my mates Might the fact I don't know her. I just like to function so I'd like to take you with me. It's yours, super concern. You very much for letting you you're desert island discs? Thank you. So much.
You ve been listening to a download from the BBC,
You'Ll- find more information on the radio for website bbc. That code on uk slash radio for. This is the bbc.
Transcript generated on 2022-06-12.