Graham Norton: I’ve been to Alcoholics Anonymous meetings, but I prefer life with booze in
Graham Norton has opened up about his battle with alcoholism, claiming he “prefers life” with booze in.
The out TV presenter, 51, is often seen drinking on his chat show, while he has joked in the past about getting drunk while commentating at the Eurovision Song Contest .
In his new autobiography, the star reveals that he has been to Alcoholics Anonymous meetings – but sees no reason to quit drinking.
In an extract published in the Mail, he wrote : “Booze can be a very tricky friend or lover. I don’t enjoy waking up when I fall off the kitchen counter where, for some drunken reason, I have decided to make my bed, but for me that is a small price to pay for the hours of fun enjoyed the night before.
“Over the years I have had plenty of drunken tales — and sleeping on the kitchen counter is only the half of it. Sometimes a night just takes more twists and turns than you expect and all your good intentions end up in the gutter, along with your keys, mobile phone and dignity.
“I have actually been to a few meetings of Alcoholics Anonymous thanks to my friend Carrie Fisher, she of Princess Leia fame.
“Her problems with addiction are well documented and she persuaded me to accompany her to an AA session in Los Angeles.
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“Initially, I was reluctant because I feared I would realise I was the same as these people who told nostalgic stories about their crazy nights and how low they had been dragged by alcohol.
“I realised at those AA meetings that, although we did share some of the same stories, I had reached a very different ending from the others. I prefer my life with booze in it, but the members I met didn’t have that choice to make. They couldn’t live their lives if drink remained in them.
“If I had to choose between booze and work, I would pick work without hesitation, but what is the point of life if you can’t sometimes release the inner moron?
“The big question is: do I have a problem? On one level, I obviously do because I drink far too much. But on the other hand, my rationale would be: where’s the harm?
“Yes, it makes me fatter than I’d like to be and perhaps I would sleep better if I occasionally went to bed sober, but my work has never suffered because of drinking.”
Graham Norton’s autobiography, The Life And Loves Of A He Devil, will be released on October 23.