So how did I become a comedian's guinea pig?

So how did I become a comedian's guinea pig?

I had a great laugh with my friend the comedian Alan Carr when he dropped in to Halifax Victoria Theatre to do a show.

I greeted him in his dressing room beforehand with a lovely limited-edition bottle of vodka decorated with little mirrors like a disco ball.

"Ooh, what's this?!" said Alan. "It's vodka? I thought it was something from Ann Summers!" 

That sort of set the tone for the whole get together. He reads my Examiner column every week - I always make sure I email it to him so he can see it wherever he is in the country, or abroad - and he's always on the lookout for a bit about himself in there.

As we were chatting, he encouraged me to set my tape recorder going - sending me back to the car to fetch it - and practically everything he divulged, he said: "Make sure you put that in your column!" or "Don't put that in your column, whatever you do!"

He had some new jokes that he'd never tried on an audience before so he tested them out on me beforehand - I must have laughed enough because he went ahead and did them onstage.

One paricularly good one featured a dog and an unreasonable accusation, but I can't really repeat it in a family newspaper.

His dressing room was really dreary. Alan was sitting reading a biography - I can't remember whose - when I arrived, there was nothing but a chair and bare clothes rail in there, no flowers or big lightbulb-lined mirror, or anything like that.

It's a running joke that I always accuse him of looking scruffy, but that night he seemed particularly smart in a brown Diesel top and G-Star jeans.

"Is this my influence?" I asked him. "Yes, that's exactly it!" he said, holding Harvey Nicks and Selfridges carrier bags aloft.

He'd just had a day's shopping in Manchester and had picked out some nice new stuff.

Alan told me all sorts - notably that contrary to the rumours, he definitely isn't going to be the new Cilla Black on a relaunch of Blind Date, and that he is doing something very special with Kylie today (MONDAY) which you may or may not see on TV tonight, or in the papers tomorrow.

We had a laugh about a rumour on uTube that those distinctive gnashers aren't Alan's real teeth, and they're just falsies that he wears for comedy effect ... and I came away with an invitation to stay at his house in London - which will no doubt give me lots more to write about!

Outbid for an evening with Antony

I had a great time at a posh corporate dinner at the Royal Armouries to celebrate supermarket Asda's donation of £1.5m to Cancer Research. Gary Lineker, the ex footballer turned presenter, was there to host a charity auction to raise even more money for this worthy cause.

The place was full of Yorkshire business movers and shakers eager to spend big money on once-in-a-lifetime opportunities

going under the hammer. I'm renowned for flashing the cash when I want to, but even I was comprehensively outbid by fellow diners prepared to lavish much, much more.

I sat with Liz Green from Radio Leeds and Asda's head of press, who's called Ed, and Gary Lineker and his very gorgeous but very quiet girlfriend were seated just a couple of people away.

First, I decided to bid up to £3,000 for an amazing trip to Spain to stay in an amazing hotel, meet the Barcelona football team, travel with them on their bus and see a top match - I wanted it as a gift for my civil partner, Michael, but I wasn't prepared to spend the £12,000 this was finally auctioned for!

Antony Worrall Thompson the chef was there and he jumped up and offered to come round to a lucky bidder's house and cook for 10 people for an evening, on a date of their choice - I thought wow, that would be a brilliant Christmas dinner party, and steeled myself to bid up to £6,000. I was nowhere near though - someone shelled out £22,000.

Gary Lineker looked super-fit and had amazing skin, you can tell he's spent his life exercising and looking after himself.

We chatted about his beloved Leicester FC while his girlfriend nervously stayed out of the way of my camera.

It's just as well the auction drew such big money - I found out that Gary had been paid £26,000 to host the event. At first I thought: "That's a bit much for a charity do!" but then I thought, his presence had drawn in lots of extra guests and donations, so it was fair enough. Nice work if you can get it!

Good luck to Lindsey

I met snooker player Paul Hunter's widow Lindsey at a party the other night, and spoke to her on the phone during the

week afterwards. She's great, so brave, considering what she's been through, and she's now busy launching a TV career.

She's going on hairdressing challenge Celebrity Scissorhands and she's done some snooker commentary and presenting.

She's been really pleased to see tributes to her husband continue to roll in to my memorial website, Gone Too Soon. So

good luck to you, Lindsey, you deserve it!