21 questions

Salman Rushdie and Donald Trump Have the Same Taste in Music

Name: Salman Rushdie
Age: 63
Neighborhood:Gramercy Park
Occupation: Writer. His new book, Luka and the Fire of Life, will be published by Random House on November 16th. He’ll be appearing at 4 p.m. this Sunday in conversation with novelist Tishani Doshi, an event presented by the New York Public Library and part of the daylong Brooklyn Book Festival.

Who’s your favorite New Yorker, living or dead, real or fictional?
Either Sky Masterson or Nathan Detroit, from Damon Runyon.

What’s the best meal you’ve eaten in New York?
I have no memory for food. Really. I couldn’t tell you what I ate the day before yesterday. So whatever that best meal was, I’ve forgotten it.

In one sentence, what do you actually do all day in your job?
I sit at a desk and stare out of a window.

What was your first job in New York?
I sat at a desk and stared out of a window.

What’s the last thing you saw on Broadway?
A View from the Bridge. I thought Jessica Hecht was amazing.

Do you give money to panhandlers?
Hmm. No.

What’s your drink?
Jameson on the rocks.

How often do you prepare your own meals?

What’s your favorite medication?
Jameson on the rocks.

What’s hanging above your sofa?
A Kara Walker cutout silhouette picture.

How much is too much to spend on a haircut?
When you have as little hair as I do, almost any amount is too much to spend on cutting some of it off.

When’s bedtime?
Late. But getting earlier.

Which do you prefer, the old Times Square or the new Times Square?
I prefer not to go anywhere near Times Square if at all possible.

What do you think of Donald Trump?
I think he’s always been very nice to me. Whenever he sees me he points and shouts, “You’re the best!” (Which is better than “You’re fired!” I guess.) And I once sat next to him at a Crosby, Stills, Nash and Young gig and he knew all the words.

What do you hate most about living in New York?
I give up. What?

Who is your mortal enemy?
Most of the really dangerous enemies in my life have been immortal.

When’s the last time you drove a car?
When I was last in London. I have a car in London.

How has the Wall Street crash affected you?
God, I’m so broke. Please give me money. (See also “panhandlers,” above.)

Times, Post, or Daily News?
Times. Oh, okay, and sometimes the Post. Um, and sometimes the News.

Where do you go to be alone?
I sit at a desk and stare out of a window.

What makes someone a New Yorker?
They arrive in New York.

Salman Rushdie and Donald Trump Have the Same Taste in Music