Q: Your growing up poorhow did that affect the way you view money?
A: Well, Iíve never had enough of it, really, to alter my perception of anything. I donít have huge bank accounts. Iíd love one. But it wouldnít change much. I donít have any expensive habits. Iím not a car collector or any of that nonsense. But Iíd love to be incredibly wealthy for no reason at all.
Q: You must have some indulgenceswine or rare books or something.
A: No. None. No bad habits at all. No! No! Just not interested in it. Anything that becomes a routine is of no interest to me.
Q: Are you a tea drinker?
A: Well, thatís just because Iím British. I mean, we drink that stuff from the minute we wake up to the minute we go to bed. I donít see that as a routine, because every cup is different from the one before.
Q: Do you have a preference?
A: Anything that says ďEnglish breakfastĒ will do. Itís a good kick. I like the caffeine kick in tea. Otherwise Iím just dreary all day long.
Q: Anything else?
A: I bought this stupid juicer. Oh God, the mess I made.
Q: So, um, you make juice?
A: Yeah, well, I have to now, because I bought the damn thing. Sixty dollarsí worth of bleediní nonsense! Itís impossible to keep clean. Iíll tell you what it isitís a harbinger of mold and fungus.
Q: Itís interesting that you mention this attempt at healthy eating, because many of your contemporaries from the punk yearsthree of the Ramones and Joe Strummer from the Clashhave all died in the past few years.
A: Yeah, and I know quite a few, too. Sad. Theyíre all kicking the bucket. I donít knowis it they made themselves ill? Iím sort of of the belief that people kill themselves from the inside out. When theyíre unhappy with what theyíre doing, or not achieving thingswhen your focus is off-kilter. The thing that keeps me ticking is my values. And I maintain them, because theyíre worthy. I like to wake up and feel Iíve done no wrong. I like that feeling. Itís a reward in itself. Whereas money would never take that place, ever.
Q: Youíre known as a very contentious person. To look back at your biography is to see a series of disputes with people.
A: I donít tolerate liars. When somebody lies to me, thatís really, like, just unbearable. But thereís a definite reason for that, and thatís the meningitis I had as a child. I came out of a coma. I was in a coma for four months. I didnít even know who I was for five years after that. Because your memory is just, you know, not there. It takes time to come back. And so I would be totally believing everything everybody told me, and so when I found out that half of those things were lies, it really disturbed me, because I was dependent on the truth. And thatís stuck with me throughout my life. Even now, I havenít mellowed in that respect. I donít like people lying to me, not even about the smallest things. I find it inexcusable.