When I was a boy I was fascinated by fire. And explosions. And guns. Generally all things bangy. I know. Sounds like the profile of someone on an Interpol watch list, but then most men would be on it.

In the last few days men all over the country have been regressing to the time they held a Transformer and an Action Man and made pew-pew noises and Arrrgh! noises and pretended the Transformer fell over and exploded. That’s right. It’s bonfire night!

After rainy disappointment last year, I resolve to raise my bonfire game up a level. Literally. I decide to build a bonfire in the shape of a giant robot. Sort of like a transformer. It’s torso would be the fire. It’s robot eyes would burn brightly. It would blaze in the November evening and the people watching would gasp and laugh in wonderment.

Turns out it’s not entirely straightforward to build a bonfire in the shape of a giant robot. After a couple of weeks, what I had created, was, basically, something that looked like a giant stick-muppet. So what. It will still look good when it burns. There will be oohing and aahing when Graham goes up. I call it Graham.

I poor some cooking oil on Graham. Apparently that helps. Friends arrive to watch. My children are very excited, but several hundred per cent less excited than me. This is going to be legendary.

Finally, after a long, dramatic build up, I light Graham. The cooking oil works! Even in the November drizzle Graham is quickly engulfed in flames. Yes! It is a triumph!

After approximately 12seconds of triumph, Graham suddenly, completely and catastrophically collapses into a smouldering heap, causing laughter, then silence.

Turns out that string and duct tape burn too.