Title: Clive James becomes AO
Post by Kevin Cryan on Today at 09:06
Australia Day 2013 Honours Lists (http://www.gg.gov.au/australia-day-2013-honours-lists)
On Saturday the 26th of January Clive James became Officer in the Order of Australia (AO), adding to the Commander of the British Empire conferred by the Queen a year ago and a special career award in the NSW Premier's Literary Awards in December.
The citation (http://www.gg.gov.au/sites/default/files/files/honours/ad/ad2013/Media%20notes%20-%20AO%20%28final%29.pdf) reads:
Edited transcript of ABC Radio (Australia) broadcast..
ASHLEY HALL: The writer, poet and broadcaster Clive James has been recognised today with an AO. He's been sick and hasn't been able to travel to Australia to accept his honour.
Tony Eastley asked him about his health.
CLIVE JAMES: I know I don't sound too good at the moment, but I'm not bad. I've got about six different things wrong with me but I'm getting through the winter OK. I sort of live from day to day. And I'm getting a few things written. I write a television column every week for the Telegraph, and I even started - I wrote the first paragraph of volume six of my Unreliable Memoirs just the other day.
I've got a feeling this might be the last volume though, we mustn't be too optimistic.
TONY EASTLEY: Is Australia a short too far now for you?
CLIVE JAMES: I'm afraid so, it's physically quite difficult for me to get there because one of my conditions is a chest condition. It's called COPD (Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease), which is the fancy name for emphysema. COPD sounds like it might be a television series starring Dennis Franz, doesn't it.
But it just means it's a chest condition and it leaves you short of oxygen. And there's just not enough oxygen on an airliner unless you take a tube of oxygen on with you. And I don't trust myself to do that, I'd lose it.
So I might be stuck here for a while if not for keeps. But I've got a lot Australian memories, and they're all going - the memories that I've got are all going to be there in volume six of Unreliable Memoirs I can promise you.
TONY EASTLEY: As I said before, you've been feted for your prolific body of work Clive James; is there any one or two pieces of work that you are particularly proud of?
CLIVE JAMES: I think I got an award from Australia, I'm very bad at remembering when things happen, but I think it was something like 20 years ago. And that was the AM, the Membership of the Order of Australia.
I think that had quite a lot to do with the fact that I was on television a lot, I was a face, whereas this award, the Officer of the Order of Australia, I think is probably more for my literary achievements, such as they are. And of course that's bound to please me more, and I'm very proud of it.
ASHLEY HALL: Clive James speaking to Tony Eastley. And Tony will have more of his interview with Clive James in AM on Monday.
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