The Steeple Times asks author, songwriter and music producer Terry Ronald: “What’s on your mantelpiece?”
The Steeple Times shares “wit and wisdom”. What’s your guiding force?
Instinct, optimism and a ceaseless quest for glamour.
“Don’t get even, get medieval” is, in our humble opinion, a great motto. What’s yours?
I’m not that big on mottos but how about: “Don’t shit on your own doorstep”? That’s pretty sound.
Kerry Katona was considered unacceptable in 2007. Who or what is unacceptable in 2014?
Discrimination and subjugation in the name of religion or faith, here or anywhere else in the world. I’m also not nuts on liver.
Tony Blair misses being Prime Minister. What do you miss most in your life?
The blithe abandon of youth.
What might you swap all your wealth for?
Well, I’d like to have a bit of the wealth for a year or two before I make a call on that, but good health always trumps money in my book.
Donald Trump was once a case of: “If you owe the bank a thousand, they close you down; but if you owe the bank a billion, you own the bank”. What’s your view on the banking crisis?
A mess. The banks just seem to be self-serving and the people doing the damage are never accountable. However, I’m a dunce as to how the financial markets of the world work so I’ll shut up.
What phrase or word do you most loathe?
“Amazeballs” (I’m gagging just typing it).
In the UK, some people consider charity to “begin at home”. What’s your view and what causes do you personally support?
That phrase has unpleasant connotations: a hungry child is a hungry child wherever he or she is. It’s just more obscene in a country of relative wealth. I’m not personally involved with any particular charity. As a cancer survivor I’ve supported cancer research for a while, but I also donate to The Children’s Society, Hope For Paws and the Terence Higgins Trust.
The judge in Law Abiding Citizen states: “I can pretty much do whatever I want” before being blown up whilst answering her mobile phone. What’s your view on the appropriate use of such devices?
I have a pet hate: People endlessly filming on mobile phones and iPads at concerts and other events. I’ve had people sitting next to me watching their footage back instead of the show they’ve paid to see. I’m as guilty as the next person of spending too much time on Facebook, Twitter and the like and smartphones certainly don’t help. That’s the downside of all these brilliant devices; we’re often not living in the moment.
If you could fill a carriage on The Orient Express, who would be your fellow passengers?
Bette Davis, Tennessee Williams, Stephen Sondheim, Ennio Morricone and Judy Garland. I know: It’s quite a camp list.
If you were unfortunate enough to end up on death row, what would be your last meal and where would you eat it?
It would be Italian – three huge courses including pasta with the perfect ragù, then perhaps slow roasted pork with zucchini fritti, lots of bread and a full-bodied red from Campania. I’d eat it with my husband Mark, looking across lemon groves towards the sea in Ravello.
What time is it acceptable to consume the first drink of the day?
Lunchtime and I’m firm on this. I once got up to find my mother and aunt drinking Southern Comfort and Tizer at 9am with the excuse that it was Christmas morning. It was upsetting on so many levels.
A Negroni, a martini or a cup of tea?
A martini: I do enjoy a Porn Star.
Whose parties do you enjoy the most and why?
Get togethers with my closest friends. We know what makes one another laugh and I’m usually in charge of the playlist.
Who is the most positive person you know?
My writer friend, DJ Connell. She always has a fabulous positive energy about her.
What’s your most guilty pleasure?
Eating Chinese chicken curry and chips and watching reruns of Melrose Place.
If a tattoo were to sum you up, what would it be of?
A disco ball.
If you were a car, what marque would you be?
A classic Jag: in need of a regular polishing but stylish and still going.
Cilla Black presented Surprise, Surprise. Tell us the most surprising thing about you.
I’m a good shot.
What’s currently sitting on your mantelpiece?
A statue of Santa Teresa flanked by two gold baroque 1940s candelabras. Not camp at all.
Terry Ronald is a former singer turned songwriter and author. His musical work includes songwriting, production and vocal arranging for Atomic Kitten, Geri Halliwell, Kylie Minogue and Kim Wilde. His first novel, Becoming Nancy, was published in 2011 and his first musical play, Some Girl I Used To Know, played at the Arts Theatre, London in August and September 2014.
Follow him on Twitter at @terryronald.
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