They flashed for Ozzy. And Ant. And Dec. But did they flash for me...?

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The Independent Online

I have a cardinal rule about award ceremonies. Do not, under any circumstances, go unless you are either up for, or are doling out, an award.

I have a cardinal rule about award ceremonies. Do not, under any circumstances, go unless you are either up for, or are doling out, an award.

There is currently an award show, I kid you not, to give awards to the best awards shows, so you could probably go to one every night of the week if you so fancy. Anyway back to my rule, absolutely no going anywhere near anything that you're not involved in, otherwise you're a dirty ligger. I happened to get invited to sit at the table of one of the nominees and, before I could say "hypocrite", I'd squeezed into my dirty ligger suit and was on my way to the Royal Opera House. The way I justified it was that, as I loathe opera, I was never going to see inside the building unless I was forced to sit through an interminable session of sweaty, fat Italians shouting about their dead wives. So I wasn't ligging, I was being an architectural tourist.

Things didn't go well. I ordered a nice cab to take me there but they must have misheard me and thought that I had asked for "the worst cab in your company" because my carriage to the event was a Ford Escort with leopard-print seat covers and three different shades of rust on the doors.

I got him to stop a block away and I sauntered down to the event trying to look insouciant. I'm not good at being a celeb as I'm always really early, whereas, to be cool, I should be fashionably late. I walked past the racks of cameras and I noticed some tumbleweed blow past my shiny new shoes. Not one camera even fidgeted. I pretended to be doing something with my phone and stumbled inside. Someone from GQ came up to me and told me that there was another row of photographers inside and that I didn't have to talk to anyone that I didn't want to. I thanked him and walked inside feeling very much like a man on his way to his own hanging. Another 20 icy metres of photographic silence and I was nearly in, the humiliation over. Another man from GQ came up to me and half-heartedly asked me what I was wearing. I told him that it was a suit and that, with him working for GQ, I was surprised he'd never seen one before.

He wandered off and I got into the lift with three giggling girls. They ignored me and went on about how traumatic the walk past the photographers must be for celebrities. Especially ones that no one photographs any more, piped up another. I was going to mention I had big things in the pipeline but I just melted into the back of the lift.

There were free drinks the moment we entered and I was pissed by the time I'd negotiated the 300 yards to the terrace overlooking Covent Garden. Things get hazy from then on in. I remember shouting and slapping my forehead at either Ant or Dec, and I think that I attempted to shake Jonny Wilkinson's hand using his famous double-handed pre-kick gesture. I'm pretty sure that I had a good chat with Ozzy Osbourne. I can't remember much of what it was about, but then neither will he since he thought I was a waiter and was trying to get me to explain how the hand-drier worked. Realising that I was about to vomit over the parapet on to the masses below in Covent Garden, I decided to call it a night.

I staggered downstairs and got to the door only to be told by yet another GQ lacky that there were loads of paparazzi outside and I could slip out of the back if I wanted to. Even though this was nice of her, I opted to risk the barrage of publicity and leave by the front door. I now realise she had probably seen me come in and wanted to save me from the indignity of my exit, but it was too late. I staggered out and waved to the throng who all looked at each other wondering who the drunk, fat bloke was. One wondered loudly whether it might be Peter Kay but then someone famous made their exit and I was alone. I vomited into a dustbin before falling asleep in a Spudulike. Good night, that.

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