starring DEREK NIMMO, CLEMENT FREUD, PETER JONES and JENNY ECLAIR, chaired by NICHOLAS PARSONS (Radio, 12 February 1994)

NOTE: Clement Freud's 350th appearance, Jane Stevens's last appearance blowing the whistle.

NICHOLAS PARSONS: Welcome to Just A Minute!


NP: Hello my name is Nicholas Parsons. And as the Minute Waltz fades away once again it's my pleasure to welcome the four interesting and talented personalities who this week are going to play Just A Minute. We welcome back three regular players of the game, Derek Nimmo, Peter Jones and Clement Freud. And we welcome someone who's only playing the game for the second time, that is Jenny Eclair. Would you please welcome all four of them! Beside me sits Jane Stevens who's going to keep the score and blow a whistle when the 60 seconds is up. And this edition of Just A Minute is coming from the Ocean Room in the Spa Theatre complex in the delightful seaside resort of Scarborough in North Yorkshire. And as usual I'm going to ask our four panelists to speak to me if they can on the subject I will give them. And they will try and do that as always without hesitation, repetition or deviating from the subject on the card. Let us begin the show this week with Derek Nimmo. Derek the subject is what I don't talk about. Can you talk on that subject in this game starting now.

DEREK NIMMO: It's quite difficult to talk about that which I don't talk about. Particularly as I was in MI8 and signed the Official Secrets Act which prevents me from talking about that which I don't want to talk about. When I was stationed in Cyprus at Number 9 Wireless Regiment, I had a particularlt difficult time just after the war. And I played a considerable amount, I think to my country's benefit, under the King's service. Other things I don't talk about are freemasonry, because I might have my tongue torn out by the roots, and my body left at low water mark.... which in Scarborough is particularly unpleasant...


NP: Clement Freud has challenged.

CLEMENT FREUD: Hesitation.

NP: Yes I agree, that sort of stumble there can be interpreted as a hesitation. So Clement you get a point for a correct challenge and you take over the subject, there are 21 seconds left and it's what I don't talk about starting now.

CF: What I don't talk about, because I was asked not to, are Nicholas Parsons' problems. I accompanied the man when he saw his doctor about the problems which I'm not going to talk about...


NP: Peter Jones has challenged.

PETER JONES: Repetition of problems.

NP: That's right.

CF: You can say that again!


NP: I don't mind you, audience, laughing when they make jokes against me but I don't think you should applaud as well! Peter I agree with your challenge and you have the subject, six seconds, what I don't talk about starting now.

PJ: I don't talk about lapses of taste or indiscretions of my friends. Nor do I tell them...


NP: Clement Freud will you take the next round, going to the dogs. Will you tell us something about that subject in this game starting now.

CF: Going to the dogs is usually used disparagingly, meaning someone is past it, is doing bad things, has joined the Serious Fraud Office, or Group Four. I would like to mention that going to the dogs is an extremely attractive, sometimes lucrative and often wonderful pastime. Greyhounds run in tracks at all...


NP: Jenny Eclair's challenged.

JENNY ECLAIR: He hesitated quite badly, I feel.

CF: I think hesitation is enough!

NP: Yes! Jenny I agree with your challenge so you get the subject, you start now.

JE: This country is going to the dogs. That's because they're taking over, messing up our streets. In fact where I live, you don't walk, you skid along, bumping into lampposts and breaking your hips! And I don't agree with Clement about going to the dogs is a nice thing to do, because you look at those poor waify things and you look in their eyes and they're saying "p-please give me a meat and potato pie, I'm starving..."


NP: Peter Jones challenged.

PJ: Some kind of hesitation.

NP: Some kind of hesitation.

JE: Yes, yes.

NP: So Jenny as you've played the game once before, I have to be...

JE: You have to be brutal!

NP: No, no, I just have to be firm and fair to the others.

JE: Fine.

NP: Sixteen seconds are with Peter now to tell us something about going to the dogs starting now.

PJ: Before I was married, I used to go to the dogs and have a few bets. But I don't any more, because I really can't afford it frankly. I'm saving up for a knighthood!


PJ: And I need all the money... I have for that end. Now going to the dogs can involve a certain amount of mixing...


NP: Well Peter Jones again was speaking as the whistle went gained another point for doing so. And he's in a strong lead at the end of that round. And Peter it's your turn to begin, the subject, being misquoted. Can you tell us something about that in Just A Minute starting now.

PJ: Well that's something that really nobody likes. For instance I once made a remark to somebody and I was quoted as saying that I wished somebody or other was dead...


NP: Jenny Eclair challenged.

JE: He said somebody twice.

PJ: Yes I did.

NP: Yes.

PJ: I didn't want to mention any name, you see, that was why...

NP: So Jenny you got in with a correct challenge again and 50 seconds to tell us about being misquoted starting now.

JE: I think I've been misquoted once, in a magazine article which said I was married. As if! Ummm...


NP: Clement Freud challenged.

CF: Hesitation.

JE: Yes.

NP: Yes, she thought about being married and came to a halt.

JE: Because I'm not! I wonder why!

DN: So do I!

NP: Clement you have 44 seconds on being misquoted starting now.

CF: I shot a hippopotamus
With bullets made of platinum,
Because if I used leaden ones,
I would lose a fortnight's holiday in Montithitful.
This is a direct misquotation of Ogden Nash who finished his verse "my hide be bound to flatten 'em". I thought I would mention this. I have been misquoted...


NP: Peter Jones has challenged.

PJ: That was a hesitation.

NP: No it wasn't Peter.

PJ: Well it was a pause.

NP: No it wasn't, I thought he kept going quite well in spite of the audience's response. Clement I disagree with the challenge, you have a point and 24 seconds on being misquoted starting now.

CF: I have never been misquoted in a long and serviceable political career. Everything that newspapers have said about me has been completely utterly frankly true. And I'm sorry about this. The only way to go about it is to lead as publicly disreputable life as you can, and hope that your family will sit with the consequences...


NP: So Clement kept going and gained that extra point, and he's equal with Peter Jones in the lead at the end of that round. Jenny Eclair it's your turn to begin, the subject, how to make a million. Will you tell us something about that subject in this game starting now.

JE: The easiest way to make a million pounds is to marry a very rich old man, and then wait for him to fall down the stairs...


NP: Peter Jones has challenged.

PJ: Not much use to me!

NP: We enjoyed the challenge Peter, so we give you a bonus point for that. But as it was an incorrect challenge Jenny gets a point for being interrupted, keeps the subject, 54 seconds, how to make a million, starting now.

JE: Unfortunately I don't have the attributes for a trophy bride. I haven't got thin brown thighs and big hair and silicone breasts. So unfortunately I'm going to have to make it myself...


JE: Which is what I've decided to do in fact.

NP: Derek Nimmo challenged.

DN: Unfortunately.

NP: There were two unfortunatelies.

JE: That's my life! It's unfortunate! It's just unfortunate!

PJ: (laughs)

NP: Why are you so amused by that Peter?

PJ: I think she's very funny!

NP: Yeah!

JE: Ohhhhh! I will marry that man!

NP: He hasn't got a million, I'm very sorry.

JE: He hasn't got one?

NP: Derek I agree with your challenge and 44 seconds for you to tell us something about how to make a million starting now.

DN: Probably one of the best ways to make a million is to start to grow fruits in northern Cyprus and export it through Kairena to England and then go to...


NP: Clement Freud has challenged.

CF: Was that repetition of fruit?

NP: No! I don't think so.

CF: Sounded like...

NP: No, he didn't say...

CF: Ah I'm sorry. Give him a point! Give him several points!

NP: There are 35 seconds for you Derek on how to make a million starting now.

DN: Alternatively I might have a dinner at the China Club in Hong Kong. And get along and sort a number of Chinese businessmen and ask them if they'd chip into a fund to give me a million. This would be enormously beneficial particularly if Michael Heseltine would come and open that said place the following week. Then I would bring all the monies back to the United Kingdom, put them into the Stock Exchange, perhaps it will be two million by then. And I'm sure at the end of the week I would make a million...


NP: Peter Jones has challenged.

PJ: Repetition of week.

NP: Yes it was, you said week before. There are five seconds for Peter on how to make a million starting now.

PJ: If you're talking about lira it's quite easy because you exchange it for about a hundred pounds...


NP: Peter Jones was again speaking as the whistle went, and he has increased his lead at the end of that round. And Derek it's your turn to begin, the subject is ghosts. Will you tell us something about that in Just A Minute starting now.

DN: At the Steven Joseph Theatre in Scarborough, on a Friday night, the ghost walks. That is a theatrical expression, meaning that you're going to be paid. And all the company, run by Mr Alan Ayckbourn so splendidly, welcome that particular ghost. Now sitting here I feel that I'm surrounded by the ghost of the wonderful Max Jaffer. How often I sed to listen to him through my whole life practically, playing his violin. And I wish I could stand there and sing and play selections from the Belle of New York, and Maid of the Mountains, for is... is a very... true...


DN: ...ghost...

NP: Jenny Eclair you challenged.

JE: He said is eight times.

NP: Well he may have done but he also hesitated didn't he.

JE: Yes.

NP: So Jenny you have a correct challenge and you have 21 seconds to tell us something about ghosts starting now.

JE: It's very easy if you're going to a fancy dress party to dress up as a ghost. Because all you need is a sheet over your head and then you go "ooooohhh" and frighten people a lot...


NP: Clement Freud challenged.

CF: Repetition of go. If you go to a party...

NP: Yes, if you go to a party and you go whooo. Bad luck Jenny. Twelve seconds for Clement on ghosts starting now.

CF: The only ghosts I know are Mr and Mrs Simon DeVere who live at 107 Balham High Street, London SW16. I thought I'd just mention them..


NP: Peter Jones has challenged.

PJ: If they live there, they can't be ghosts!

NP: I understood that was their surname, they didn't live there as ghosts. I thought that was the point he was making. So actually... so...

PJ: That was the point?

NP: Yes I thought that was the point, wasn't that the point you were making?

CF: Oh well!

NP: Absolutely! So Peter you have a point for an amusing challenge and two seconds on ghosts starting now.

CF: Is a six letter word with a vowel...


NP: In spite of Clement getting points in that round, Peter Jones is still in the lead one ahead of him. And Clement it's your turn to begin, the subject is dressing. Will you tell us something about that in this game starting now.

CF: In the United States what we call stuffing is dressing. Herbs, breads, seasoning, spices, liquor, anything at all which you put inside a bird and odiously take out when nobody is looking. What you stuff, in a partridge, a pheasant, a chicken, a turkey, even a tortoise, is all dressing. We tend to use the word dressing for salads, using oil and vinegar with salt and pepper and push the dressing over anything that blushes or wilts as a consequence of the application. Dressing is also used for putting on clothes, shoes, socks, pants, trousers, shirts, ties, jackets, waistcoats. And dressing up doesn't mean that you're doing it in order to impress people with the brilliance of your wardrobe. But dressing in that direction is simply making you smarter...


NP: Peter Jones has challenged.

PJ: He said stuff twice early on.

JE: Yeah I thought... I was thinking that.

CF: I deliberately said stuffing, stuffed and stuff.

PJ: You said that as well, yes.

CF: No...

NP: He did, he did say stuffing, stuff and stuffed.


CF: Ohh!

NP: I have to be fair to everyone. And he keeps going for four seconds on dressing starting now.

CF: Cross dressing means wearing the clothes...


NP: And Clement kept going and got an extra point for speaking as the whistle went and he's now one ahead of our previous leader Peter Jones. Peter it's your turn to begin and the subject is Fiji. Can you tell us something about that place starting now.

PJ: Well it's not just one island, it's about a thousand of them all together in the South Pacific. And I think they invented... salad dressing...


NP: Derek Nimmo challenged.

DN: Hesitation.

NP: Yes he did hesitate. (laughs) I'm just ponderding the idea of them inventing salad dressing! I think that's a rather lovely...

PJ: A Thousand Island, I mean!

NP: Well done Peter! Give him another bonus point, I like that one yes! But Derek has the subject and it's Fiji, 51 seconds starting now.

DN: I remember the first time I landed in Suva which is the capital of Fiji I went to my hotel, wrote out my name and as they haven't any television there, they said "we listen to Just A Minute" which was quite a surprise when you go to places you've never been to before. An (slight stutter) uncle of mine was Chief Justice at the time, a very difficult task...


NP: Jenny Eclair's challenged.

JE: Did he say fluncle instead of uncle?

DN: I suppose... I don't have any fluncles, I only have uncles!

JE: I don't mind!

NP: It's very difficult sometimes with Derek's, what he claims is an impediment. But I think it's his way of flannelling afterwards!

JE: Cheating!

NP: Yes! Jenny as you've only played the game once before I'm going to be very generous and say you have the subject and 34 seconds on Fiji starting now.

JE: I've got absolutely nothing to say about Fiji. I've never been there in my life...


NP: Derek Nimmo challenged.

DN: Deviation, she's got nothing to say about Fiji.

NP: So Derek's got the subject back because you were deviating. There are 31 seconds on Fiji starting now.

DN: The principal problem in administrating the republic is that 48 percent of the population are in fact Indian and a rather smaller number are Fijian or Micronesian by descent. Which means that though the Fijians are very big butch fellows that can kick the other fellows around, particularly in the Rugby Sevens in Hong Kong I might tell you, that they...


JE: He did say fellows twice.

NP: Yes that's right, yes. Don't look so surprised, you said fellows twice!

DN: All right, I'm not complaining.

NP: They try and bluff me out of it, you see! Jenny you have a correct challenge there and you've got nine seconds on the subject you don't want to talk about, Fiji starting now.

JE: Oh I'd love to go to my hairdresser and when she said "where are you going on your holidays this year?" I'd like to turn around and say "Fiji, I always go to Fiji!"


NP: Derek Nimmo challenged.

JE: Ohhhh!

DN: No, no, absolutely wrong, very unsporting...

NP: I know...

DN: It wasn't a fair challenge, I withdraw it absolutely! And I think she's the most charming girl we've ever had on this programme! And if I had a million pounds, I'd propose to her if I hadn't got a wife already!

NP: You can't get round me or her in that way! You're allowed to repeat the subject on the card which is Fiji, and that's what she did. So you get a point Jenny for being interrupted and you keep going for one second, you'll probably get another one in a moment. It's still Fiji starting now.

JE: Lots of beautiful women...


JE: Yes!

NP: So Jenny Eclair, our second time player of the game, she's moved rapidly forward and she's only one point our joint leaders which are Peter Jones and Clement Freud. And for once Derek Nimmo is trailing a little. Derek it's your turn to begin, the subject is now socks. Will you tell us something on that in 60 seconds starting now.

DN: Well socks is a very appropraie subject for me at the moment because I've really got to pull my socks up if I'm going to retrieve anything from this absolutely disastrous performance that I'm giving today in Just A Minute! Socks I like wearing them very much indeed. Sometimes I wear odd ones! It's terribly good fun, you have a red one and a pink one, a green one and a blue one, a white one and a black one and a brown one, and so on...


NP: Jenny you challenged.

JE: He's said one a million times!

NP: Yes! Once we might let him get away with it, twice no and four or five times, definitely not. Jenny, socks, 40 seconds starting now.

JE: I have terrible problems with my socks, you know, because I've got moths in my wardrobe! Can you believe this? I'm so distressed! What can one do? You have to put down mothballs! I keep saying moth, God I'm so dreary! I do apologise...


JE: But it is a recent thing and I've done...

NP: Jenny, Jenny you have been challenged actually.

JE: But I would like people to write in and tell me what to do about my problem with moths.

NP: I know.

JE: Because they smell! Those mothballs, they smell like a little old lady (goes into mumble)

CF: It's the wrong programme! You need Women's Hour!

NP: Oh call her Camphur Eclair soon!

JE: Yes!

NP: Derek you challenged and you have 30 seconds on socks starting now.

DN: Before the invention of nylon socks, when one wore socks of pure wool, then if they developed a hole you darned them. And one used to have nice little things shaped rather like a mushroom. You used to bung up the sock and then draw threads across it, into a kind of like a criss-cross situation. And then the wool was put over it. And then your sock would be good as new once more. And when there was clothes rationing which not many of you, apart from Peter Jones and Clement Freud can remember...


NP: So Derek Nimmo did get a number of points in that round including one for speaking as the whistle went. He's moved forward but he's still in fourth place which is unusual. Peter Jones, Clement Freud and Jenny Eclair are all equal in the lead. And Peter it's your turn to begin, and the subject now is what I would love to do right here. In Scarborough, in front of this audience. Let's discover what it might be, starting now.

PJ: To be able to speak for a minute without deviating, hesitating or anything else, like being obscene or politicallly incorrect...


NP: Derek Nimmo challenged.

DN: Five ors.

NP: Yes, the ors as well as the hesitation. So...

PJ: Oh as well, yes!

NP: Derek you've got the subject and it is what I'd like to do right here, 50 seconds starting now.

DN: What I'd love to do right here is to have behind me a really big band like Ted Heath had in the old days. And then I would inflict upon you all my version of My Way which would ring out across...


NP: Jenny Eclair challenged.

JE: My my!

NP: Yes, my my my!

PJ: What have these people done to you Derek?

NP: Jenny, 37 seconds are left, the subject is what I'd love to do right here and you start now.

JE: What I'd love to do right here would be to have liposuction. Because I saw my bottom in the mir, mirror in the hotel. I was so distressed. I thought that's what I need, something to suck the fat out of it. Then I'd like to leap into a jacuzzi with a big magnum of champagne and all my mates and then... I would...


NP: Clement Freud challenged.

CF: I was just helping her out!

JE: Yes! And I'm grateful! Oh!

NP: You mean by that it was the offer of the jacuzzi?

CF: The jacuzzi!

JE: I was just trying to keep things clean, you know.

DN: What's all this liposuction? I don't even know what it is. What is liposuction?

JE: I'll explain later.

NP: With your figure Derek, you don't actually need it so I wouldn't worry. Clement I agree with a hesitation, 19 seconds on what I'd love to do right here starting now.

CF: What I'd love to do right here is walk down the promenade, making a various number of stops for prawns, musseld, lobsters and the excellent breast crab for which Scarborough is rightly famous. North Yorkshire of all the counties in England...


DN: God he's a creep isn't he!

CF: Yeah! Creep! I get an extra point for being a creep!

NP: Yes! Clement you managed to keep going with creeping up in your sycophancy and until the whistle went, and you get an extra point for that. And you've taken the lead, you're one ahead of Jenny Eclair, two ahead of Peter Jones and three ahead of Derek Nimmo. And Jenny it is your turn to begin and the subject is at the end of the day. Will you tell us something about that subject starting now.

JE: At the end of the day I like to sit on my sofa, slobbing around, surrounded by bottles of wine, cigarette packets, watching one of those dreary old sitcom things that make me laugh so much. And then I know I should take my makeup off because otherwise I'm going to have skin like a pterodactyl. But unfortunately I'm a bit of a sad old slapper, and I go to bed, and it's all over my pillow, mascara, lipstick, dribble, because that's what I do at the end of the say, lots of dribbling! And another thing I do, I like to be able to slip into clean cotton sheets, Irish linen. But unfortunately I have to roll back a rather smelly old duvet which is full of biscuit crumbs and my rather flatulent four-year-old daughter. I have to turf her out and get her into her bed. Then I get into the bed and I like to kiss my partner good night. He goes "yeurgh! why don't you go and clean your teeth?".... And....


NP: Peter Jones has challenged.

PJ: Hesitation.

NP: I don't think she hesitated!

JE: I was talking nonsense! For too long!

NP: She didn't hesitate.

PJ: What was it?

NP: It was a rather disgusting picture that she painted actually.

PJ: Yes! I was doing her a service professionally!

NP: I would agree with you there, yes! But Jenny an incorrect challenge, you have 13 seconds and it's um the end of the day starting now.

JE: I make myself some hot milk and have a little biscuit, and what else do I do? No...


NP: Derek Nimmo challenged.

DN: Well we had the biscuits already.

JE: Yeah yeah!

NP: The biscuits were in your bed before, and now you're going to have the biscuits.

JE: Yeah yeah!

NP: Derek you had a correct challenge, you have eight seconds to tell us at the end of the day starting now.

DN: At the end of the day I like to slip into my green velvet smoking jacket, undo a bottle of Krug champagne, take two...


NP: So Derek Nimmo was speaking as the whistle went, gained an extra point for doing so. And as we move into the last round it is Derek's turn to begin and the subject is the Loch Ness monster. Derek you have 60 seconds on the Loch Ness monster, no, not literally, I mean to talk on the Loch Ness monster starting now.

DN: Whenever I go to look for, or indeed at, the Loch Ness monster I fly to Inverness, drive across the Black Isle and down to Drumner Drocket where the Loch Ness Monster Museum happens to be. And I can take some snaps within that particular establishment and pretend to my chums that I actually have witnessed Old Nessie! Gosh it would be a wonderful excitement, would it not, if the Loch Ness monster actually lived. How exciting, charming, and a better world it might be. We're full of sordid polly pics and things like that. I would like a real Loch Ness monster on which to ride perhaps, or photograph it down at the bottom of the loch...


NP: Jenny Eclair has challenged.

JE: Photograph twice. Am I making that up?

DN: Well I don't know, I'm just wandering on.. it doesn't really...

CF: He said actually four times!

NP: Yes, but you didn't challenge for it Clement.

CF: Oh no!

NP: Right! So Jenny you have 18 seconds to tell us something about the Loch Ness monster starting now.

JE: When people say that they have seen the Loch Ness monster I sneer in my cynical fashion and go "ha! Get out of it!" Because these are the same folk who have seen Lord Lucan, Elvis Preslet and Shogar playing cards together! Mind you, I would not like to camp out on the shores of that lagoon in case some dread creature reared it's ugly head...


NP: Derek Nimmo challenged.

DN: Well it's not a lagoon. It's a loch.

NP: It, it, it is a loch and that is the Scottish word for it. But some people might refer to it as a lagoon, I don't see why they shouldn't.

DN: A lagoon is generally surrounded by a coral reef, I thought. If you go to Fiji, you'll see one.

PJ: You never hear the Lagoon Ness monster, do you!

JE: Oh! I give in! If it matters so much, I'll just give in!

NP: I've heard Americans refer to Loch Ness as a lagoon. So people do refer to it incorrectly...

DN: You are a liar! You really are! No wonder I dislike you so much! I mean! Americans refer to Loch Ness as a lagoon!

NP: Derek let's get this...

DN: Really Nicholas!

NP: It was in a show that was recorded a few weeks back, you decided you didn't like me.

DN: I've always disliked you! It doesn't matter which week we're talking about!

NP: Whether you like me or not, I still have to play Just A Minute. And anyway I don't believe you because I think you say most outrageous things in order to get laughs.

JE: I can't remember what we're talking about now, but anyway. But...

NP: I tell you Jenny that you have another point for that and you are now just in the lead. There's one second left, you're one ahead of our previous leader. The subject is the Loch Ness monster, one second starting now.


JE: The Loch Ness monster...

NP: And someone's challenged. Derek Nimmo what is your challenge?

DN: Hesitation.

NP: Yes indeed Derek...

JE: (screeching) No! No!

NP: You have half a second on the Loch Ness monster starting now.

DN: The...


NP: Jenny has challenged.

DN: ...Loch Ness monster is a very...

JE: Hesitation.

NP: Absolutely Jenny, you're perfectly correct. A quarter of a second, the Loch Ness monster starting...

JE: (screaming) The Loch Ness monster is a...


NP: Yes! So we finish Just A Minute with a flourish. First of all we thank our lovely audience in Scarborough for welcoming us so well, and making our stay here so enjoyable. Before I give you the final score and say Peter Jones who usually does extremely well and hasn't failed us once again. He finished in fourth place but he got a lot of points. He was only one point behind Derek Nimmo who was only one point behind Clement Freud. But they were, all of them, three or four points behind our winner, who has only played the game once before, Jenny Eclair! She's our winner this week! We do hope that you have enjoyed this edition of Just A Minute, it only remains for me to thank our four delightful panellists for the contribution they made to make the show so successful, and that is Clement Freud, Peter Jones, Derek Nimmo and Jenny Eclair. And also I thank Jane Stevens for keeping the score so well and blowing her whistle so magnificently when the 60 seconds are up. I thank Ian Messiter for thinking of the game so we all keep working. I thank Sarah Smith who directs the show and makes sure we all keep in order. (laughs) And that is of course my job. This is Nicholas Parsons, saying good-bye, hope you've enjoyed it, and will be with us next time we play Just A Minute. Till then from all of us here, good-bye!