'I was drinking and smoking at 8': Simon Cowell reveals he was a troublemaker during childhood

'I was drinking and smoking at 8': Simon Cowell reveals he was a troublemaker during childhood
After becoming a father, Simon Cowell admits to being protective about his son (Frazer Harrison/Getty Images)

LONDON, UNITED KINGDOM: 'X Factor' judge Simon Cowell recalled being a menace during his childhood in an interview with The Sun on Saturday, October 29. The music mogul shared shocking details about being an alcoholic and a smoker at the tender age of eight. He was also reportedly arrested for hijacking a bus at 12. 

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The 63-year-old was apparently tired of his boring life and to add some exciting elements to it, he pointed a pea-shooting gun at a frightened bus driver and demanded he drive, which led to the TV personality getting a warning from the police in Watford. If this isn't proof of little Cowell's mischievousness, the time he nearly burned down his family's house to prove that Santa is not real during a family Christmas surely meets the criteria. 

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"I was drinking and smoking at eight, and I once nearly burned the house down. I was trying to prove to my brother that Father Christmas wasn’t real, so I found the costume and set fire to the beard. I dropped it on the sofa and the sofa caught fire. The whole room went up. Luckily, my older brother smelled the smoke and found us. Then the fire brigade came," he recalled.

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After threatening the bus driver at the age of 12, Cowell revealed that he was greeted by a furious mother when he returned home. "She was the disciplinarian, my dad was always the softer one," he said. He continued talking about his father's nature, "He said so many things that stuck with me, but I can’t remember him ever raising his voice to me."

Simon detailed more about his risky teenage years and admitted to being not good at academics. "But I was so bad, slightly living on the edge. I was smart, but I wasn’t academic at all. I could have never been a doctor and I had a very low boredom threshold. So it was school after school, and then I was out at 16."

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While being a troublemaker during his young days, Cowell confessed to being shy as well. "The funny thing is that, for all the trouble I caused, I was actually unbelievably shy as a kid. I was OK as long as I was in my own house or with my friends. But if I was asked to go to a party, I didn’t want to go," he continued.

Now with the creator of the 'Got Talent' franchise finally stepping into his father's shoes, he admits to being protective about his son Eric Cowell. "Being a dad has made me more sensitive, 100 per cent. Everything is about the knock-on effect for him. Like any parent, I just want him to be happy. But I also really enjoy his company, to the extent that Lauren is like, ‘Can we ever go out without Eric?’ And I’m like, ‘No’. We do lots of things together. We play football, we watch movies in the garden, we play Monopoly — though I cheat!"

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