I’ve been invited as a sort of special guest to a local do organised by the Samaritans.

On the guest list I appear sandwiched between the esteemed chairman of the Campaign for Real Ale and co-organiser of the arts centre’s annual beer festival Alan Wareham (for it is he) and the no less esteemed Mayor of Colchester Gerard Oxford.

Hell of a sandwich to visualise that is.

I am described in the following terms: Anthony Roberts - author, raconteur and columnist (his step son Jamie is providing the music).

This is a first for your humble correspondent.

I love the idea of being an author, raconteur and columnist. For some reason I feel I ought to purchase a cravat for the occasion. Maybe even a smoking jacket.

Who was that guy who used to do the monologue at the beginning of That’s Life ? Cyril Fletcher that’s the guy. Him.

He really looks like an author, raconteur and columnist. I feel I should appear to be like him otherwise people are going to be disappointed.

I could appear fashionably late, first of all dramatically silhouetted in the doorway before advancing nonchalantly to the vol-au-vents, airily sampling the delights of the circular puff pastry savoury before an incisive and acidly amusing interjection into the conversation of the neighbouring circle of people.

After several hours of regaling people with hilarious anecdotes it’s suddenly noticed I’m gone.

Like Cinderella leaving the ball, with a swirl of his cape, he exits, leaving the party richer but now strangely subdued as if the meteor had suddenly passed.

Well, that’s one version.

Of course, the truth lies in the brackets (his stepson Jamie is providing music).

The reality is I shall be no more than the inconspicuous roadie for Jamie and Glen, unpacking the amplifier from my car boot and coiling up the leads at the end of the night.

I shall be delighted to be there in whatever capacity.

I am a huge admirer of the Samaritans and the work it does in the community, particularly, of course, with the lonely, the disenfranchised, the dispossessed the vulnerable and sometimes the desperate. They act without prejudice, they act with humanity, they act with grace and love. Count me in.