08/23/2011 02:43 pm ET | Updated Oct 24, 2011

Simon Cowell: 'Idol' Boredom, Punk Rock & Real Life

Simon Cowell is a man of contradictions: he's 51 years old and watches cartoons with breakfast. He's the perhaps the most powerful man in the music industry, working unending hours, but he'd rather die than kick back with old suits in the usual trappings of wealth. He drinks healthy smoothies and takes vitamin injections, but he's been smoking for over forty years (perhaps he figures that, if he's frozen upon death like he plans, he can get his lungs cleaned up in the future).

The "X-Factor" chief and mogul features in a large story in GQ this month, in which he talks about his childhood aspirations, rejection of rejection and what keeps him going -- among many other things.

For all his success, he doesn't want the typical lifestyle enjoyed by men of a certain age working the typical nine-to-five.

"My worst nightmare in the world would have been if I'd had to join a golf club and have miserable suck-up evenings with the boss," he told the magazine. "I actually would rather throw myself off a bridge than have that."

Instead, Cowell is his own boss, running the biggest TV sensation in England and bringing it to the United States this year. That, of course, follows his exit from "American Idol," the show that made him a gigantic star across the sea from his native land. If it seemed that he was on autopilot in his last few years -- well, he was.

"I was bored," Cowell said. "But at the same time, I had a deal with Fox, and you've got to do what you've been paid to do... There were times I used to wake up and I knew it was an audition day and it was the same feelings I used to get Sunday nights at school. I used to wake up and think, I just wish I could do what I used to do--put a cup of tea on my head and pretend I'd got a fever."

Cowell also insists that his show is very different from "Idol," a point he echoed in a conversation he had with HuffPost earlier in the year.

"There is so much open mindedness and so much room for different types of artists at the moment, that this is a healthy time to be making a show like this, and that's the reason why we took away as many rules as possible to sort of reflect what's happening in the world today," he said. "And to not be sort of snippy about any type of genre of music. If you're good, you've got the public behind you, good luck to you and enjoy the $5 million bucks."

For more, click over to GQ.