Interview met John Rendall
I met John in his Chelsea flat in London and spoke to him about Social Media, Success and Happiness.
What do you think about the social media and do you use it?
No, I don’t use it all: I don’t twitter and haven’t got a Facebook page. I am quite wary of it because I’ve seen some very unpleasant things happen to people. There was a recent example last year when the wife of Speaker of the House of Common’s wife, Sally Bercow picked up on someone’s blog that a man named Alistair McAlpine had been arrested in Wales on paedophilia charges. Without checking, she jumped in and assumed that this was Lord Alastair McAlpine, one of the senior figures in the Conservative Party. She posted this misinformation on her Twitter account. It was a monstrous thing to do and it took ages to unravel and to prove that it wasn’t Lord Alpine. But poor Alastair was naturally distraught and I believe this contributed to his early death. Mrs Bercow’s apology was very half-hearted and disgraceful.
Hard work, training and ambition. I cannot stress enough:you have got to work hard and do what you feel passionately about. When an opportunity comes along, you are prepared for it because you know what it is you want. You can do an enormous amount of self-educating, by reading, travelling and meeting people with similar interests. Unfortunately young people don’t read very much nowadays. I think that is a shame; reading is such an education.
What does happiness mean to you?
I ‘ve got three very happy and healthy children who all do what they want to do.
All of them are very creative ( NB: John’s elder son Max, is a magician:
www.magicianmaxrendall.com )and they move in circles of creative friends. I am very enthusiastic about what they do. When I can help I help them and that makes me very happy too.
Have you been lucky?
Luck is also spelled skill. When you make a decision, all your experience and education guides you. You must be prepared to be lucky!
Also, I was lucky to have been born in Australia where we had no world wars. Australia is a very big and beautiful country with a lot of space were only thirty million people live. Yes, I have been very lucky!
Are you often being asked to do something for nothing ?
Yes mostly I’m lecturing at schools. I do this with the greatest pleasure .
I lecture at schools in the United Kingdom and in Africa.
At Mkomazi, the George Adamson Trust’s base in Tanzania, the staff and wardens travel from school to school explaining the value of wildlife and show the children slides and films.
We tell the children that this wildlife is their inheritance and explain to them that telling a poacher in return for a few shillings where the lion is, means there will be no more wild game. No more tourists will come: the tourists who buy their mother’s vegetables, their father’s meat and that income will enable them to go to higher schools.
Do you mind being asked because you're successful, famous and/or influential?
Of course it is really Christian who is famous. Everyone remembers his name. I am just ‘one of those guys who raised a lion in London’ but don’t mind being asked at all. I am delighted to do lecturing at schools and lead safaris, I do it with the greatest pleasure!
When do you help people?
I help where and whenever possible! Friends of mine come to me and ask if I can help their children with job introductions. I do help but it is important for me to be confident that the introduction is a valid one. And when it works, it is wonderful!