I got a message from Colin Firth saying he was overwhelmed by the high life and wanted to chill out with someone friendly.
When I arrived at his house he looked less large and green than I had expected and it occurred to me that maybe I’d dreamt the whole thing when I fell asleep during ‘Shrek’.
But being Charm Itself he welcomed me in and we enjoyed a pair of Alpen Light cereal bars. We doubted the judgment of Tesco Online’s substitution of them for Nature Valley granola bars but they turned out to be quite tasty.
‘So Anne Hathaway. Mouth too big or do you think she rocks it?’, I quizzed mid-dunk.
He gave me that steely English reserve look he’s known for and coughed. After slightly too long I moved on to his staggering success, to which he responded with the old King humble speech (no stutter) but his left eye was twitching, which denotes a gargantuan ego, in my experience.
‘My first exposure to you was in the film ‘Another Country‘ when I was at boarding school. My friends fancied Rupert Everett but I suspected he was gaywise even back then and went bananas for your sulky schtick.’
‘Really, that’s too kind,’ he said humbly (eye twitching).
We established he is rarely mistaken for Colin Farrell (although how would he know: ‘Hey Colin, great hair in that movie!’– see what I mean?) before indulging in a bit of Darcy chat.
Of his path to glory he said he could take absolutely no credit whatsoever for anything he has ever done ever because it had all simply landed in his lap.
‘You mean you didn’t have to sleep with even the teensy weensiest casting director to get the role in ‘Nanny McPhee‘?’ I asked mischievously.
I took his silence as a yes, allowing him to take the lead in the conversation, which he did with considerable earnestness and at some length on the subject of ‘A Single Man’. I nodded a lot, resisting the urge to tell him his clear-lense spectacles had made the greatest impression on me of all.
‘But you’ve had fun too!,’ I exclaimed, trying to lighten the mood. ‘Bridget Jones. St. Trianian’s 2. Mamma Mia!’
For a split second I thought he was going to cry but he widened his mouth in the manner of a smile instead. At which point I suspected his teeth were not quite as nature intended and come to think of it not much else either.
But you don’t sit in a star’s living room and tell him his complexion is waxy, especially when he’s about to sing like a canary about Renee Zellweger’s weight gain.
Which he didn’t so much but he does think Hugh Grant is a peerless human being (hooker scandals notwithstanding), that Meryl Streep does a better English accent than him and that Uma Thurman could actually do with being a bit taller.
‘Do you remember making eye contact with me in the children’s play area of the Natural History Museum a few years ago?’ I probed, bringing him back down to earth.
He hesitated ever so slightly before saying, ‘Not exactly’, and looking uncomfortable. So in I jumped: ‘You’re absolutely right. It was the Natural Science Museum.’
I didn’t think I should miss the opportunity to show a bit of leg but his mind was elsewhere and before long he had me folding napkins for his dinner party.
I wanted so much to ask him about his child with Meg Tilly but he was humming a song from ‘The Importance of Being Earnest’ and it was just too good to interrupt.
When it came to an end I picked up my pot plant and kissed him on the cheek.
‘Do you know why women love you, Colin?’ I said as I sashayed out the door, his eye starting to twitch immediately. ‘Because you’re intense, sexually unthreatening and posh.’
And then hurried back to shout ‘But not like Prince Charles!’ through the letterbox.