NICHOLAS PARSONS: Welcome to Just A Minute!


NP: Hello my name is Nicholas Parsons. And as the Minute Waltz fades away once more, it is my pleasure to welcome and introduce the four exciting and dynamic personalities who this week are going to play Just A Minute. And we welcome back Derek Nimmo, Peter Jones, Wendy Richard and Clement Freud. Will you please welcome all four of them! Well I said they were exciting and dynamic and we certainly hope they will be in this edition of Just A Minute as I sit down to start the show with Anne Ling beside me who keeps the score and blows the whistle when 60 seconds are up, because the creator of the game, Ian Messiter, cannot be with us once more. And as usual I will ask these four panellists to speak if they can on the subject I will give them and they will try and do that without hesitation, repetition or deviation, in other words deviating from the subject on the card. Peter Jones would you like to begin the show this week and take the subject of health food shops. You have 60 seconds as usual starting now.

PETER JONES: I like health food shops, I often go to them. But I do resent the fact that much of the produce is expensive. It doesn't seem right that something that's unrefined should cost more than something that's refined. I think I said something twice... I don't know what it was...


NP: And Derek Nimmo challenged you.

DEREK NIMMO: Well he said something twice.

NP: He said something twice.

PJ: Yes. I usually do!

DN: Yes!

NP: Peter after all these years of playing the game I thought you'd know the best technique is to keep going in case they don't spot it.

PJ: I know but as you demonstrated yourself just playing the game for 20 years doesn't necessarily make you good at it!

NP: Thank you Peter! You've demonstrated something there, I don't know what it is. But anyway, Derek Nimmo, you have a correct challenge, you have a point for that and you have 45 seconds on health food shops starting now.

DN: I would like to agree with Peter Jones. It is iniquitous that health food shops charge so much for nuts or carrots than ordinary shops, just because...


CLEMENT FREUD: Sorry, sorry, sorry.

NP: Clement well you pressed your buzzer...

CF: Yes indeed. Give him several points!

NP: Well if you thought better of your challenge, but you've interrupted and he still gets a point for that. But I can't give him several points, I don't want to give him several points! Especially with the way he speaks to me on the programme usually. But Derek you have another point for the interruption and you have 35 seconds to continue on health food shops starting now.

DN: Nicholas Parsons of course never goes to a health food shop. That's why he looks so seedy! But there are lots of people who do go, in fact, and benefit enormously...


NP: Clement Freud challenged.

CF: Hesitation...

NP: Yes indeed...

CF: ...and repetition of go.

NP: He realised that probably I'm frequently in health food shops and dried himself up there. So Clement you've got in with a correct challenge and a point for that of course, 27 seconds are left, health food shops, starting now.

CF: What I mind most about health food shops is they now sell things which are said to be light, or contain less fat, when all that has happened is they've put water in it. For instance you can buy butter on which it says 50 percent of the grease content of the ordinary product...


NP: Wendy Richard challenged.

WENDY RICHARD: Hesitation.

NP: Yes, indeed yes Wendy, right...

CF: This is an important message to our listeners!

NP: But you forgot the second part of it! So Wendy got in with seven seconds to go, to tell us something about health food shops starting now.

WR: I very rarely go into health food shops, because as the rest of the team have already stated, some of the goods in there, I think...


NP: Whoever is speaking when the whistle goes gains an extra point. And on this occasion it was Wendy Richard. So Wendy you now have two points and so has Derek Nimmo. Derek Nimmo would you take the second round, the subject is chance. Will you tell us something about that in Just A Minute starting now.

DN: I think this must be my lucky chance to get chance. Because chance would be a fine thing. It is meaning of course fortuity, an opportunity perhaps. In gaming terms it is the element of luck. So seldom... actually with me...


NP: Wendy Richard challenged.

WR: Hesitation.

NP: I agree Wendy. So you have 44 seconds to talk on chance starting now.

WR: Not being a gambler myself, I do not often get myself in (starts to laugh)


NP: Clement Freud.

CF: Two Wendy Richards!

NP: Yes! I seem to remember last time you were with us Wendy you, myself tripped you up.

WR: I know!

NP: Clement you've got in with a correct challenge on myself. Forty seconds, chance, starting now.

CF: I myself am quite keen on games of chance. Have been known to go to race meetings and put money on which horse, dog...


NP: Wendy Richard challenged.

WR: Was there a hesitation in there? I think there was.

NP: Yes the audience thinks so.

CF: They say yes to anything!

NP: You're certainly working... you're closest to the audience actually Wendy, you're certainly working on them and getting them on your side. So they supported you there ah and you ahve 31 seconds to talk on chance starting now.

WR: I don't approve of games of chance. I think gambling can be very bad for you...


NP: Clement Freud challenged.

CF: She's talked about gambling before.

NP: Yes. You talked about gambling when you...

CF: She said she didn't do it a lot.

NP: ...when you started before Wendy.

WR: I know!

NP: Clement you have 27 seconds to talk on chance starting now.

CF: To sleep, perchance to dream. Shakespeare... in...


NP: That's the only quote he knows, obviously! Derek Nimmo you challenged.

DN: He dries in the middle of a big speech.

NP: That's right. You have 21 seconds to talk on chance Derek starting now.

DN: I know Clement likes games of chance, because I've been to the races with him on a number of occasions. He is the most abject gambler...


NP: Peter Jones has challenged.

PJ: Repetition, he went on a number of occasions!

NP: So what we do there is we give Peter Jones a bonus point for a delightful challenge. But as Derek wasn't actually deviating from the rules of Just A Minute, he keeps the subject, having gained a point for being interrupted, 15 seconds left, chance Derek, starting now.

DN: I'd like the chance to take Wendy Richard on a slow boat to China. I can think of no more delightful companion when one's crossing the Indian Ocean, passing the tips of Seram, moving on towards the Molucca Straits and rounding through the Gulf of...


NP: Well they clapped so loud, it seems as though they rather endorsed the idea that you should take Wendy round on a slow boat to China. But will you get back for the next series of Just A Minute, that's all we ask. You were speaking as the whistle went Derek, gained the extra point at the end of that round. You're in the lead, one ahead of Wendy, then Clement Freud and then Peter Jones. And Wendy Richard your turn to begin, the subject, oh, I don't know what you're going to do with this. It's just coo. Will you tell us something about coo in Just A Minute starting now.

WR: I'm not an expert on coo. But I do believe that pigeons coo. In fact some mornings I can hear them, they wake me up, just sitting on the window ledges going coo. They seem to spend all day just going coo coo coo coo coo...


NP: Clement Freud challenged.

CF: I think that was a repetition!

NP: I think that was...

WR: I'm allowed to say coo!

NP: I know it is...

DN: It's the subject on the card!

NP: I know it is the subject on the card Wendy but you can't keep going forever...

WR: I wasn't!

NP: You could go for a whole minute saying coo coo coo coo coo coo coo coo.

WR: I wasn't going to do that! Neither was I going to do a list like some other members of the team!

NP: Well if the member of the panel to whom you're referring who occasionally does lists, if you want to challenge him for that, try it next time he does it. So far no-one has. But um I agree with Clement's challenge so Clement you have... the, the watch is going backwards at the moment! So you have the subject of coo and there are 49 seconds left starting now.

CF: There are a number of South American countries in which coups have taken place. And I would like to start with Equador, Bolivia...


NP: Wendy you challenged.

WR: Well I could see we're heading for another list!

NP: Yes but Wendy you must wait for the list before you challenge. He just said...

WR: He was already on the second item on the list! Now that is a list! I'm sorry!

NP: You don't know...

WR: If I can't say coo three or four times, he can't start another list!

NP: Wendy as the audience enjoyed what you said so much, I give you a bonus point. But actually he just mentioned two countries, he hasn't given us a list yet. So legitimately within the game I must...

WR: Yeah but you know it was heading that way! I mean, it was quite obvious!

NP: Well we don't know, he could be heading that way. We will find out because he continues with 40 seconds, having got another point for being interrupted on coup Clement starting now.

CF: Starting at the very south of that country, Patagonia is famous for not having had any coups. But the Argentines, Brazil...


NP: Peter Jones has challenged.

PJ: Patagonia did have a Coo actually. He was a Chinese restaurateur!

NP: Were you part of it Peter? Is that how you know?

PJ: No I just...

NP: Actually I don't know whether Patagonia's ever had a coup or not...

DN: No you missed the joke Nick...

NP: So what I will do on this situation...

DN: Nick you missed the joke, you see.

NP: No I've got the joke.

DN: What's the joke?

NP: This Chinese restaurateur in Patagonia...

DN: Was called Coo, you see.

NP: Yes that's right.

DN: You've got it, have you?

NP: I have got it, yes.

DN: It didn't sound as though. You were appealing to the audience for assistance. I thought it had missed you as usual.

NP: I like to bring the audience in occasionally, make them feel wanted and loved.

PJ: Well thank you very much Derek for that endorsement. But I don't want to have it sort of flogged to death. It's rather, rather a slender little joke...

NP: The audience...

PJ: I don't think, I don't think it'll bear very much conversation! I'm rather sorry I made it!

NP: I would like the audience to decide because...

DN: No! (laughs)

NP: Whether Peter Jones should have the subject or not for his challenge. And if you agree you cheer for Peter and if you not you boo for Clement Freud and you all do it together now.


NP: Right Peter, I think the audience are with you...

PJ: Oh?

NP: To a man, woman and child. And you have 31 seconds to talk on coup starting now.

PJ: He also said a takeaway side to the business which didn't do as well. Because he was in the heart of the Pampas country, there was not very much of a population nearby. So he relied entirely on the odd traveller dropping in, usually by helicopter...


NP: Derek Nimmo challenged.

DN: Well he sort of stopped. After the helicopter landed he stopped.

NP: I know but as it's such delightful rubbish I want him to continue. So Peter you have nine seconds to go on with this rubbish on coo starting now.

PJ: Deep fried noodles were one of his specialities. And his number 127 was really much admired by eager...


NP: By popular acclaim from our audience Peter Jones was allowed to keep going till the whistle went, gained the extra point, but he's still last in this particular show. Because it's very... he's only one point behind the other three actually who are all equal in the lead which is very interesting at this point. Clement Freud it's your turn to begin, the subject is telepathy. Will you tell us something about that in Just A Minute starting now.

CF: I'm not sure I believe greatly in telepathy. But extraordinarily every now and again when I turn on the car radio, I find that it plays music which I was actually thinking of myself. And I guess that is sort of telepathetic. I once saw in a theatre a man who called himself The Amazing Hudson.... Telepathy...


NP: Wendy Richard challenged.

WR: Hesitation.

NP: Yes after the Amazing Hudson you paused. And so Wendy got in first, there's 38 seconds for her to tell us something about telepathy starting now.

WR: I'm a great believer in telepathy. In fact you can always tell when someone is going to dry or hesitate on this programme, you see. It's as though we have telepathy between us all, because then they know when to press their buzzer. Telepathy is played...


NP: Peter Jones has challenged.

PJ: I don't, at all!

NP: You pressed your buzzer then and said something delightful. You have a bonus point for that and Wendy has a point for being interrupted, and keeps the subject, 24 seconds Wendy, telepathy starting now.

WR: Telepathy...


NP: Clement Freud challenged.

CF: Hesitation.

NP: Yes!

WR: You knew i was going to do that, didn't you. It was telepathetic.

NP: Yes, so did you pause and Clement got in first on the subject of telepathy with 22 seconds left starting now.

CF: There are countries in South America where telepathy is very common indeed. I could name you places like Brazil, Argentina, Ecuador...


NP: Wendy Richard challenged.

WR: We're going back into a list again! I'm sorry! You had three! You mentioned three places then! I'm sorry, you're listing!

NP: So is that your telepathy, tells you we're going into a list?

WR: I knew he was going to go into a list!

NP: You may know he's going into it, but he's got to go into it before you can challenge otherwise he's not deviating.

CF: There's nothing the matter with a list!

NP: There's nothing the matter with a list, but er, unless you have a clever challenge...

PJ: How many words do you have to have before it's a list?

NP: All I say is test me. I try to be fair and give everybody an equal chance and show justice within a very difficult job and make these challenging decisions. But this one is Clement Freud's, he has 14 seconds on... you see it's got me quite emotional! A frog came in my throat. there, the sort of, you know, the touching way I try to respond to them all. Clement Freud you have 14 seconds on telepathy starting now.

CF: There are in this audience, and I can feel it, a number of people who particularly want me to talk about hedgehogs and wheelbarrows. In the third row, a woman in a red skirt, in the...


NP: So Clement Freud kept going on telepathy until the whistle went, gained the extra point and he's actually in the lead, just one ahead of Wendy Richard, then Derek Nimmo then... equal with Peter Jones in third place. Peter it's your turn to begin, the subject is crime. Will you tell us something about that in Just A Minute starting now.

PJ: Crime is a fascinating subject and I'm particularly interested in the crime within the law of which there is a great deal. And er it's difficult to pin down and the people who commit these crimes are often unpunished. Very often they appear in the Honours List in fact! And all kinds of places are they done honour...


NP: Derek Nimmo challenged.

DN: Are they done, deviation.

NP: Are they... deviation, yeah. Just tell me, see if I agree with you.

DN: What am I supposed to tell you Nicholas? I love you. What do you want?

NP: What is the de... I want to know what your interpretation of the deviation is.

DN: Well it just seemed to be a curiously constructed sentence which had no possible end.

NP: So you're saying deviation from grammar?

PJ: Well it did have an end, but you're never going to hear it now!

NP: No Derek, you see, if it's deviation from grammar then I agree with you. But if you say deviation from the subject...

DN: No, no...

NP: ...which you could have said...

DN: Oh I see...

NP: ...then I wouldn't have agreed.

DN: Sorry Nicholas.

NP: Now do you understand?

DN: Yes, grammar deviation.

NP: I have to explain things in two sybbles to you, I know that.

DN: Two sybbles?

NP: Two sybbles.

DN: Thorndike and who else?

NP: They do really wind me up! And I say sybbles when I mean syllables. Derek I have now agreed with you, it was deviation of grammar, so you have the subject and 38 seconds on crime starting now.

DN: And I agree with Peter Jones. You see if you commit a big crime you get a large picture in the paper, and a small one you only get a picture of your thumb taken somewhere. Because the big criminals do actually prosper in this country today, and are often laden with honours as Peter has so wisely pointed out. It is a horrendous state of affairs, un...


NP: Clement Freud challenged.

CF: Repetition of big.

NP: Yes you said big much earlier on but he rather sportingly let you go. I'm glad he interrupted you because the image that you're giving of our country abroad is really rather shattering. And I totally dissociate myself from your sentiments because it's not true! But nobody challenged for that, but you challenged for repetition of big, Clement, you're correct, 14 seconds, crime, starting now.

CF: The police are...


NP: And Peter Jones has challenged.

PJ: Hesitation.

NP: No, I'm sorry. He didn't, actually. In fact there's still 14 seconds left on the clock, 13 and a half, crime Clement starting now.

CF: The people who protect us from crime are the most splendid ones. Policemen, constables, chief detectives...


NP: Peter Jones has challenged.

PJ: That was a list of three!

NP: As we've had so much conversation about the list I'm going to give you the benefit of the doubt Peter. Yes you have six seconds on crime starting now.

PJ: I'd love to commit the perfect murder. I'm not going to tell you who the victim would be...


NP: My goodness, the things that come out in Just A Minute. He gained the extra point, he's equal with Wendy Richard in second place, one ahead of Derek Nimmo and Clement Freud's in the lead. And Derek your turn to begin, the subject, gags. Will you tell us something about that in Just A Minute starting now.

DN: In the theatrical sense I suppose it means sort of jokes really. But originally a gag was either a verb or a noun. You could gag somebody be shoving a gag in their mouth preventing them from speaking. In fact people could be bound and hung and gagged at the same time and drawn and quartered. Most ghastly...


NP: Wendy Richard challenged.

WR: Well we're listing and we're hesitating.

NP: Which is your challenge?

WR: Both!

DN: Is this a new crime? We're not allowed...

NP: No it's not, we've had a bit of fun about that and Peter's got a point on it and we're going to be much more serious...

WR: Well there was... I'm sorry Derek, there was a slight hesitation.

NP: Yes I will give you hesitation.

WR: There was a, there was a...

NP: I can't give you two and list would not have been correct.

CF: Lists are okay again now, are they?

NP: Make your challenge and see how I interpret it. That's all I have to say, that's my job. Wendy you have a point and a correct challenge of course, um, 42 seconds, gags starting now.

WR: I enjoy a good gag. But I must say there is nothing more boring than standing with a group of people, you sudden;y think of one good gag, you recount that tale and then everybody else starts telling one gag after another. Then it doesn't become amusing any more, don't you agree? I mean it really does drive me daft. I... appreciate...


NP: Derek Nimmo challenged.

DN: Well she sort of hesitated really, sadly.

NP: I think she definitely hesitated.

DN: I was enjoying it very much, I liked it really.

NP: Yes yes, she got driven daft and hesitated and 20 seconds are left for you on gags Derek starting now.

DN: I'm never quite sure when a gag and a joke are the same thing. Oscar Wilde once said "never make love to a Methodist standing up because it could lead to dancing". Now whether that is a joke or a gag I don't really know. But either way it seems to make me laugh quite a great deal as I imagine it may when you say it to an audience. Perhaps with several people then tell other stories...


NP: This is the only programme anywhere where you can make a good joke or a good gag and you have to keep speaking through your laughter. Which Derek very cleverly did and kept going till the whistle went, gained the extra point and he's now er, well he's now equal with Wendy Richard in second place behind Clement Freud. And Peter Jones only one point behind them. Wendy your turn to begin, the subject, stagefright. Will you tell us something about that in Just A Minute starting now.

WR: Stagefright is really quite awful. And it can strike any one of us at any time, well, those of us in this profession anyway...


NP: Clement Freud challenged.

CF: I felt a list coming on!

WR: No way was there going to be a list, I do assure you!

NP: Doesn't matter whether you felt a list coming up, the subject's not telepathy and she didn't have a list. So she was not deviating and she has 53 seconds to continue on stagefright starting now.

WR: It's this awful feeling of panic that suddenly comes over you when you are stood on a stage. Many people have suffered from this in the past, and there is absolutely no cure for it, except to get yourself back out there, in front of an audience and try and do your stuff to the best of your ability. There was also a movie some years ago called Stagefright. I can't remember who was in it, it was a black and white film. I think... it was that nice man, Richard Todd, but I'm not sure. And he had this small part in a play and you see, the whole of this celluloid piece was about these people being in a theatre. Anyway... he, he couldn't get on the stage without being absolutely terrified. Now you see how rotten these three are to me! And so, he had to overcome this stagefright before he could get on with the piece. There was also (speaking through laughter) a very nice girl in it. I can't remember who she was either. She was doing her best to help him. For...


NP: Oh Wendy they were awfully mean to you...

WR: They were!

NP: But the audience did enjoy it, yes. You kept going. I will say this, you certainly didn't get stagefright then. You kept going, you deviated, you hesitated, you repeated...

WR: There was a lot of repetition but no lists!

NP: Yes and you kept going for 15 seconds longer than the 60! Because I stopped Anne from blowing the whistle which was very naughty of me. So we all were mean to you but you gained an extra point for speaking as the whistle went. And we'll give you a bonus point for keeping going so magnificently, give her two points, why not? And you're in the lead! Because we were so mean to you, you gained that extra point.

WR: Thank you.

NP: Clement the subject is friends, will you tell us something about that in this game starting now.

CF: At a birthday party recently, I was given a cracker and pulled it with the person sitting opposite. And there was a motto inside which read "we meet new friends day by day, we may laugh with them and jest...


NP: Derek Nimmo challenged.

DN: Day by day.

NP: Day by day, yes, unfortunately that is... well not, definitely that is repetition. So there are 48 seconds left for you Derek on friends starting now.

DN: A friend indeed is a friend in need. Is the other way of putting a well-known expression. Because you know, friendship is terribly important. As you get older, and I am in the twilight... oh I suppose the springtime of my senility...


NP: Clement Freud challenged.

CF: Deviation, no, I think the twilight was right!

NP: Yes I think springtime is a little bit devious.

DN: I said springtime of my senility!

NP: Of your senility?

DN: That's what I said.

NP: I didn't hear that, I'm sorry. I apologise in that case because I'm always fair. Thirty-six seconds on friends starting now.

DN: One of my dearest friends is called Geoffrey Palmer. Every springtime he goes into the woods around...


NP: Wendy Richard challenged.

WR: He said springtime before.

NP: He did indeed Wendy, the springtime of his senility, yes.

DN: Oh absolutely! You're so right! Well listened Wendy! Well done! Jolly good!

NP: So Wendy you have 30 seconds to tell us something about friends and I don't think you have any friends here after that last round! And you start now.

WR: Well I don't know Geoffrey Palmer that well so I can't say he's a friend of mine but I do know that he's very fond of my pickled onions! Anyway I value my friends...


WR: What?

NP: Clement Freud challenged.

CF: Hesitation.

NP: Yes...

WR: When?

NP: After...

CF: After anyway.

NP: Yes so Clement you got in...

WR: I just...

DN: There must be a certain intimacy if he's fond of your pickled onions!

NP: So you've got in on pickled onions... sorry you've got in on friends with 21 seconds to go starting now.

CF: I have friends pretty well all over the world and in many counties of England, Scotland, Wales and Ireland...


NP: Wendy yes?

WR: He's listing! Listing again! I mean he's being doing it all day!

NP: Yeah but that is not one of the rules of Just A Minute I'm afraid Wendy so Clement has the benefit of the doubt once more and he keep going on friends with five seconds to go starting now.

CF: I have no close acquaintances in Lancashire, although I met somebody...


NP: Right at the end of that round, what is the score? Well Clement Freud was speaking as the whistle went, gained the extra point, he's one in the lead ahead of Wendy Richard, then comes Derek Nimmo and then Peter Jones. And we're into the last round, it's fairly close, what is going to happen? We'll find out as Peter Jones takes the last round and the subject is theatrical awards. Peter will you tell us something about that in this game starting now.

PJ: I think more actors should get prizes. There should not only be a first, there should be a second, third, 49th, 205th, until you got to the very last one of the 400 or so actors who work in the West End. For instance there would be a prize for modesty, the Nicholas Parsons Prize for...


NP: Derek Nimmo challenged.

DN: Repetition of prize.

NP: Yes you did have too many prizes there I'm sorry.

PJ: Yes, I would like more prizes!

NP: Yes! I was thinking of having to sit through an award where they had 400 prizes being given out! But Derek got in with a correct challenge with 39 seconds to go, theatrical awards starting now.

DN: I once won the Variety Club award as show business personality of the year. But it was a long time ago and it was a very bad gloomy time and nobody else was up for it very much...


NP: Clement Freud challenged.

CF: Repetition of time.

NP: Yes it was and Clement got in with 28 seconds on theatrical awards starting now.

CF: I'm rather in favour of theatrical awards. There are Oscars and Emmies and Larrys, there's the Evening Standard award for the best actor in a musical. Also the most significant actress in a supporting role in aaaaaaa....


NP: So Wendy Richard challenged.

WR: Hesitation.

NP: Yes you get him on hesitation correctly Wendy. One point behind him as you take the subject of theatrical awards, 13 seconds to go, starting now.

WR: I won an award last year. I was so surprised to receive it that I couldn't make an acceptance speech and I just burst into tears! But it's very nice, it's very pretty. It's a silver heart and sitting on top of our mantlepiece at home...


NP: Wendy's achievenment brought not only that particular round to an end but also the show to an end. And she got an extra point of course for speaking as the whistle went. And Wendy do tell us what was your award?

WR: It was the Time Teaser TV Personality of the year.

NP: So now let me give you the final score. As I said before, what are the points, it is the contribution. And Peter Jones gave his usual value to the programme, Derek Nimmo came along with his enormous panache and showed it once again. And Wendy Richard demonstrated her particular style and Clement Freud his own particular erudition. The one who had the most points, actually it is a draw, because Wendy Richard and Clement Freud both have 14 points, we will say together they are this week's winners! We do hope you enjoyed this edition of Just A Minute and will want to tune in again when we play the game. It just remains for me to say on behalf of our four panelists which is Wendy Richard, Clement Freud, Derek Nimmo and Peter Jones, thank you very much indeed. Also on Anne Ling who's been blowing the whistle and keeping the score. And also the creator of the game Ian Messiter and our producer Edward Taylor and myself Nicholas Parsons, thank you for tuning in and we hope you'll be with us the next time we all get together and play Just A Minute. Until then from all of us here goodbye.