QUICKFIRE: Actor and comedian Ben Miller on flat whites, forgetfulness and his fear of being laughed at

Tim Rooke

Where is home? A classic Cotswold-stone house in the Gloucestershire Hills.

Guilty pleasure? My 1980s record collection, which includes music by people such as Peter Gabriel, Lloyd Cole And The Commotions, Thompson Twins and The Cocteau Twins.

career plan B? A coffee barista with a hipster beard, taking a very long time to make flat whites and espressos.

Who would play you in a movie of your life? I hope it would be me, in a mystery called Lost Property in the Cotswolds, playing a detective trying to track down things I’m always losing such as car keys and mobile phones.

Biggest bugbear? Someone nabbing a parking space when you are about to go into it.

As a child you wanted to be… I wavered between Tarzan as played by Johnny Weissmuller and Stan Laurel.

Your best quality? My spaniel-like loyalty.

And your worst? I can be indecisive about things – and the less important something is the more indecisive I am.

Most romantic thing you’ve ever done? On our fourth wedding anniversary last year, when you are supposed to give fruit, my wife Jessica and I bought each other olive trees.

Last meal on earth? A hamburger or the jerk chicken from Banner’s – a restaurant in Crouch End, North London.

Dream dinner-party guests? I would have a round table with Jayne Mansfield, Albert Einstein, Edith Piaf, Stephen Fry, Marie Curie, me and Jessica.

Advice to teenage self? The things that you are worrying about now won’t turn out to be important.

Cat or dog? Dog, definitely – I have a wheaten terrier called Ruby.

What do you see when you look in the mirror? Salvador Dalí, as I have been furnished with the most monumental Dalí-esque moustache to help promote the Movember Foundation’s annual Grow A Mo’ campaign that raises funds for men’s health.

Starstruck moment? Meeting Paul McCartney backstage at a Steve Coogan show at the Hammersmith Apollo. I was really into the Beatles as a teenager and was so overwhelmed that all I managed to say was, ‘hi’.

Big break? Meeting my comedy partner Alexander Armstrong.

Career highlight? Doing a sketch with Alexander and John Simm at the Royal Variety Performance in 2008.

Favourite tipple? A double espresso with hot milk on the side. I’m obsessed with coffee.

Top of your bucket list? To visit China.

One thing that would make your life better? A better short-term memory.

Philosophy? Life is a mystery, you’ve just got to go with it.

Biggest lesson you have learned about money? Mr Micawber in Charles Dickens’s David Copperfield got it right when he said happiness comes from income exceeding expenditure, and misery from expenditure exceeding income.

First record you bought? ‘Wild West Hero’ by the Electric Light Ochestra.

Best present you ever received? A Spanish guitar from my parents when I was about 12. I began playing then – and I still do.

Biggest fear? Strangely enough, being laughed at. Probably one of the reasons I became a comedian is that you get a chance to control when people laugh at you.

Celebrity crush? It’s always been Carol Vorderman.

Happiness is… That moment of balance as you swing from one emotional extreme to another.

Ben is among a number of celebrities supporting the Movember Foundation’s annual fundraising Grow a Mo’ campaign this month to help tackle men’s health issues, uk.movember.com

Interview by John Koski.