Howard Marks Q&A
‘Famous Last Words’ with writer, speaker and former World’s Most Wanted Man, Howard Marks
Last thing you did that made you feel good?
Being acquitted at the Old Bailey during 1981 of importing fifteen tons of Colombian marijuana, when I was very obviously guilty of the charge.
Last thing you’d want to be doing right now?
The last thing I would want to do now would be to listen to anyone talking loudly with an American accent.
Last orders… What’s your poison?
DMT, (di-methyl tryptamine). It’s a substance produced naturally by every animal, including us, each second of our lives. If you remove DMT from birds that normally migrate, they no longer know the way to South Africa. If you remove it from animals that hibernate, they spend the winter as if they were addicted to cocaine. When we dream, our natural production of DMT significantly and measurably increases. When we die, our brain gives us all the DMT our bodies can produce.
Every zoological death is accompanied by an overdose of DMT. It is as if the brain knows we are off on a heavy trip so it lets us have the lot – we will need it. It exists naturally in the bark of some trees, the leaves of some rushes, and the pus exuded by the warts of some reptiles, particularly toads known (most appropriately) as cane toads. Therefore, I would lick a toad until its warts ran out of pus.
“It must have been the world’s best party”
Last supper… What are you ordering?
I would probably leave most of the choice to Judas. But the first course would have to be smoked haddock (or a kipper), the second course, a very hot and spicy banana kofta curry accompanied by magic mushroom rice and a litre of Biondi Santi bottled Brunello de Montalcino. My dessert would be a standard crème caramel and a bottle of Chateau d’Yquem.
Last person you’d want to share a drink with?
If you mean sincerely I can’t really decide, but it would be either Jesus Christ, Buddha, Elvis Presley, or the setting sun, if it became a person.
Last time you shed a tear and why?
About 48 hours ago, when Rhys Ifans persuaded me to drink tequila the way they do in North Wales. Salt is sprinkled on the back of the hand and snorted (a little up each nostril), the tequila is drunk in one gulp, and the lemon is squirted into the right eyeball.
Last refuge… where would you go?
Somewhere near Mount Sinai, ideally wherever the Israelites held their last rave when Moses picked up the Ten Commandments from God. It must have been the world’s best party, until Moses called the proceedings to an untimely halt.
“Do not take yourself the least bit seriously”
Last the course… tips on loot, love & life?
Die in debt to institutions, but not individuals. Use every part of one’s body, especially the lungs. God smoked, and Lucifer was his lighter. Realise one can never control any events but one can always control one’s attitude to any event. Do not take yourself the least bit seriously, and never live with the one you love.
Last but one… random question: MI6, the IRA or the Mafia – Who are the most hospitable?
The Mafia, largely due to the quality of food and drink provided and the healthy respect for silence.
Famous Last Words?
Either, ‘I feel a little better?’, or ‘Die, dear doctor, that’s the very last thing I’ll do’ or ‘Pass me that toad.’