WELCOME TO JUST A MINUTE!
starring KENNETH WILLIAMS, CLEMENT FREUD, PETER JONES and SHEILA HANCOCK, chaired by NICHOLAS PARSONS (Radio, 16 November 1971)
ANNOUNCER: We present Kenneth Williams, Clement Freud, Peter Jones and Sheila Hancock in Just A Minute. And as the Minute Waltz fades away here to tell you about it is our chairman Nicholas Parsons.
NICHOLAS PARSONS: Thank you, thank you very much indeed and welcome once again to Just A Minute. And once again we're delighted to have Sheila Hancock with us to do battle with our three regular male competitors. And once again I'm going to ask them to speak, each one in turn if they can, for Just A Minute on some unlikely subject without hesitation, without repetition and without deviating from the subject on the card. And according to how well they do it they will gain points or their opponents will gain points. And let us begin the show this week with Clement Freud and the subject, it's a good one to begin with, Just A Minute. Can you talk, Clement, for 60 seconds on Just A Minute starting now.
CLEMENT FREUD: When you go into a restaurant and order a steak, which may be a sirloin, an ultra carte fillet, or a rump, and you want it underdone, rare...
NP: Kenneth Williams...
KENNETH WILLIAMS: Deviation, Just A Minute is the title of a radio show and he's talking about steak!
NP: Yeah but, but Kenneth, he might go in there and say "Just A Minute..."
KW: Oh! Have you ever heard anyone go in there and say "Just A Minute"?
NP: Yes, regularly! The waiter always says to me "just a minute" and it's an hour! And this is what I was..
KW: Oh well then I withdraw.
NP: I'm delighted, it makes it much easier...
KW: I definitely withdraw the challenge, I mean, I make no bones about it! I'm sorry I spoke! I'm sorry! Just kick me as you pass!
NP: Anyway Kenneth as I disagree with your challenge so Clement Freud has a point and he has 50 seconds to continue on Just A Minute starting now.
CF: An alternative method to specifying the type of meat you wish to have is to say to the waiter "Just A Minute". As a result of which it will come up raw, or at best, burnt on the outside and cold on the inner. But Just A Minute is also a name of a radio panel game in which stars of stage, screen and dog track assemble before small...
NP: Kenneth Williams...
KW: Deviation, there's no stars of any dog track up here!
NP: You haven't seen Clement Freud at a dog track, have you?
CF: Coming out of Trap Four!
KW: Are we in the realm of reality or not? I mean, are we discussing the show? Is he really in a trap? Does he come out of a trap?
NP: No, no, he was then, Kenneth I must explain to you, that was a Clement Freud joke about the idea of him coming out of a trap.
KW: I see!
NP: I think he kept going, he didn't altogether deviate from Just A Minute. So I'm going to give him another point and there are 26 seconds for Just A Minute Clement coming now.
CF: Sit on the stage of a London theatre while a small puny audience boo and occasionally...
NP: Kenneth Williams...
KW: Deviation! Grave discourtesy to these lovely people! Grave discourtesy! Grave discourtesy! Absolutely!
CHEERS FROM THE AUDIENCE
KW: Thank you! Appalling rudeness! Very rude!
NP: Deviation, so you mean that you think our audience are not...
CF: You need a braver audience than that to cheer me!
NP: You're saying it's deviation because it's not a small sized audience?
NP: Yes and obviously Clement...
KW: And far from puny! Look at her up there! She's not puny!
NP: I've never seen a man throw it away so much as Clement Freud did. He threw his chance away then to antagonise our audience. Because once they clap, you know, we know which way it goes, and they're the final arbiters. So Clement I agree with your challenge, you take over the subject and there are 18 seconds, Just A Minute, starting now.
KW: Just A Minute is a perfect medium through which you can hear the dulcet tones of Kenneth Williams...
KW: What finer...
NP: Sheila Hancock why have you challenged?
SHEILA HANCOCK: Deviation, they're not always dulcet! I grant they are sometimes.
NP: Yeah, they're not always dulcet.
NP: No, no, I mean sometimes they're most abrasive, aren't they? And very aggressive and very rude. And so Sheila I agree with your challenge and so you gain a point and there are nine seconds for Just A Minute starting now.
SH: It is incredibly difficult to talk on one subject for one minute. I wouldn't have believed it would be as difficult until I came...
SH: In the nick of time!
NP: The whistle has just been blown by the man who keeps the time, the inventor of the game Ian Messiter tells us that 60 seconds are up. And whoever is speaking when the whistle goes gets an extra point. In this case it was Sheila Hancock who has a lead of two alongside Clement Freud over Peter Jones and one over Kenneth Williams at the end of the first round. And Sheila Hancock it's your turn to begin, the subject is poetry. Can you talk to us on that subject for 60 seconds starting now.
SH: This happens to be one of the great joys of my life. It's something I discovered about two years ago. At school, I remember endlessly doing boring old things like Hiawatha which are enough to put you off for life. However now I have discovered more modern verse, and indeed I have given the odd poetry reading at places like the Festival Hall. And nothing gives...
NP: Clement Freud has challenged, why?
CF: There are no places like the Festival Hall.
KW: Poetry... You're most rude interrupting a lady like this!
NP: Well she actually said odd places like the Festival Hall. I think that would agree with your challenge that the Festival Hall is odd, there's not another place like it. So you are therefore agreeing with Sheila so she has another point and there are 33 seconds...
KW: She'll win! She'll win!
NP: ...for poetry starting now.
SH: Sylvia Plath is one of my favourite poets. I had a funny thing happen a little while ago when I was going to do one of these said...
NP: Peter Jones why have you challenged?
PETER JONES: Hesitation.
KW: No, don't be so ungallant, you rude person! Go on dear! Go on!
NP: I think she was floundering a little, whether she actually...
PJ: Floundering, yes she was...
KW: No, she was lovely!
PJ: Floundering, yes that's it!
KW: She was talking about poetry and was very nice!
PJ: Floundering is the word for it!
KW: We were all agog!
KW: All agog...
NP: If we all speak at once the listeners don't know what's going on! I think that it was a debatable point but Peter Jones I'm going to give the benefit of the doubt to you and say she was, so you have a point and there are 24 seconds left for poetry starting now.
PJ: If you can fill each unforgiving minute with 60 seconds worth of distance run,
The earth is yours and everything that's in it,
And what is more, you'll be a man, my son.
PJ: ...that those words...
NP: Clement Freud actually challenged you.
CF: Oh did he?
NP: Well I'm afraid there was, Peter, you see...
KW: You left an ever-so-long pause.
NP: You left an ever so.. he left it for the audience to applaud which they did. But you see the thing is even if they clap, you've got to keep going.
PJ: Ah, I didn't realise that!
NP: Yes! You can't play to the audience and just wait for laughs and the applause and build it up that way. No, it was a very long pause Peter. I'm afraid I agree with Clement's challenge so he gains a point and there are nine seconds for poetry Clement starting now.
CF: There was a time when poetry consisted of verse, and each...
NP: Kenneth Williams why have you challenged?
KW: Because this is deviation, the statement is totally incorrect.
KW: Because poetry has always been poetry. It's never consisted of anything else.
NP: I disagree, I mean poetry can be verse. I mean it, it, it depends on which way you look at it.
KW: He said there was a time when poetry...
CF: Don't argue with the chairman!
KW: ... was classified, classified...
CF: He's a very good chairman!
KW: ... there's never been anything like that!
CF: I don't know why we have Kenneth Williams on the show in the first place!
KW: There's never been a time when it was anything else!
CF: I don't know why we have Kenneth Williams on the show!
KW: Poetry means poetry! Now look here! I'll give you chapter and verse! What do you want? Aristotle? Do you want Aristotle? Do you want Plato on the subject?
CF: I want Derek Nimmo!
KW: Poetry's always been poetry! Don't you shut the door on me mate!
CF: I want, I want, I want to have Derek Nimmo back!
KW: I'll put one on ya! I'll put one on ya!
NP: All right...
KW: I'll fix you! Eh! What?
NP: I will put one on the audience now. If you want chapter and verse, I will go to...
KW: (singing) If you want it from me, I'm the one.
NP: Kenneth Williams you said as soon as the show was over, you had to get away...
KW: Yes I know! Hurry up!
CF: Go on!
CF: There's prose poems.
NP: Yes I think so, so Clement you have a point and there are five seconds left starting now.
CF: But now there is prose poems, many of which is...
KW: (laughs) Balderdash! Absolute balderdash!
NP: On that occasion Clement Freud was speaking as the whistle went so he gained the extra point and he now has a lead over Sheila Hancock at the end of that round. Peter Jones it's your turn to begin, the subject surf riding. Can you talk to us about surf riding for 60 seconds starting now.
PJ: One of the most memorable advertisements I can ever recall is that of an...
NP: Kenneth Williams why have you...
KW: Deviation, we're not discussing advertisements, we're talking about surf riding.
NP: He's probably saying...
KW: It's all deviation. You're best to give the subject to me, dear, and I'll talk about it.
NP: If you win it legitimately, you will have it. But until you do, the subject will stay with the person who has got it. On this occasion it was Peter Jones because he hadn't yet reached the advertisement, what was in it, and there are 55 seconds Peter to continue surf riding starting now.
PJ: It featured a picture of us, a New South Wales lifeguard who was standing on a surfboard and holding a Christmas pudding. And he was advertising Australian dried fruit, sultanas, currants and the like. And later on in the year this picture was changed or adapted to advertise other er...
PJ: I actually hesitated there! Nobody apparently has noticed it.
NP: Yes they did.
SH: I did!
NP: We all noticed it, but including the audience...
PJ: I thought they were dropping off for a moment! I noticed Clement's eyes close. That's always rather a de...
NP: When his eyes close, that's when he's thinking!
PJ: Ah! Yes.
NP: He actually pressed his buzzer at that particular moment and Clement you challenged.
SH: You mustn't let them intimidate you!
NP: Deviation from what?
CF: From surf riding, he was talking about hesitation.
NP: That's right! He's gone even one further from the hesitation, he's gone on to talk about. Clement you have a point and there are 34 seconds for surf riding starting now.
CF: There is only a limited amount of surf in this country, but a great deal of riding. Even jockeys on discs seem...
NP: Kenneth Williams why have you challenged?
KW: Deviation, disc jockeys are nothing to do with surf riding.
NP: No but he had, I think he had established the fact he was going on from surf riding to talk about...
KW: The subject is surf riding, not riding, dear.
NP: I know, but a disc jockey might even surf ride, and you're talking about riding and he was comparing surf riding and other types of riding. He hadn't deviated sufficiently yet to be way off the subject. And so there are 25 seconds left for surf riding with Clement Freud starting now.
CF: And horsebound Liberal Members of Parliament wishing to engage in this pursuit have to go to Victoria, New South Wales, Queensland...
CF: ... yea, Tasmania!
NP: Sheila Hancock's challenged.
SH: They don't, they can go to Rohampton! If you're talking about surf riding! The lot...
NP: They can go to...
SH: Skirf riding?
CF: In Rohampton!
KW: You've got skirfs in your hair, you great nit!
CF: Have you been to Rohampton?
KW: No I haven't!
KW: What's all this about Rohampton? Why have they got skirfs there anyway?
CF: It's the atmosphere.
KW: Oh! I see, I'd no idea!
NP: Actually Sheila, the thing was, he said they go there, they don't have to go there. So he wasn't strictly speaking deviating from the subject of surf riding.
SH: He said have!
NP: So Clement has another point and there are 14 seconds left for surf riding starting now.
CF: One day in Hobart, or to be more accurate one afternoon on the outskirts of that city, I put on my bathing dress and got a piece of wood known as a board and lay upon this, the hair on the...
NP: Well Clement Freud's surf riding has taken him into a lead of, quite a commanding lead over all the others at the end of that round. Kenneth Williams, your turn to begin, the subject, happenings. Many you often create for us most spontaneously and enjoyably but can you talk about them for Just A Minute starting now.
KW: Well they are simply things which occurrrrrrr in the life and ordinary business of humanity. I wouldn't regard them myself as having any special significance artistically, although I know there is a school of thought which maintains that the instant happening is in itself if intrinsic value. And they actually go as far as to stage such things. It's a load of old rubbish! The only art worth calling that name is the result of one man's vision. And depending on the richness of that vision, that...
NP: Sheila Hancock got in first.
SH: I would, deviation, I'd dispute that it's always the result of one man's vision.
KW: You could have got me on repetition because I said art twice, but the vision...
NP: And vision!
KW: ...you can't get me on, dear! You, you're hoisted with your own petard! Dear, out of your own mouth...
SH: Leave it to the judge!
KW: Out of your own mouth, you see!
NP: Well actually Sheila you could have had him for repetition, I agree. But the thing is he was talking about happenings and it can be the result of one man's...
SH: He said the only definition of art is the result of one man's vision. Well I would dispute that...
NP: Well it's a ...
SH: A lot of people were responsible.
NP: ...debatable point, we could spend the whole afternoon discussing it. So I'll put that to the audience. All right audience, such a difficult subject on which to make a decision so you will be the final judges. If you agree with Sheila Hancock's challenge, would you cheer. And if you disagree with her challenge will you boo, and will you all do it together now.
CHEERS AND BOOS FROM THE AUDIENCE
NP: The audience decided that you have a point Kenneth and you keep the subject, 15 seconds, happenings, starting now.
KW: One happened to me in a restaurant when this feller said "you're worse off than you are on! Thank you for a great disappointment!" And exited in a cloud of after-shave and talcum powder, leaving me most discomforted...
NP: Clement Freud has challenged, why? Why have you challenged?
KW: So! What's the matter with you now? Eh?
NP: Kenneth! Sit down!
KW: (in tears) I've come all the way from King's Cross! I'm treated like a load of rubbish!
NP: Kenneth we know you're exhausted. Just sit down, rest yourself, you may have to go back to King's Cross afterwards. He came in one second beforehand...
CF: Sorry! No I didn't!
NP: Well you pressed your buzzer, unless...
CF: Yes indeed, it was a mistake!
NP: That means that Kenneth Williams has a ...
CF: Good! I would like him to have another point!
NP: One second left for...
NP: And Clement Freud has challenged again.
CF: Give him another! Yes! I want him to win!
NP: When Kenneth wins, he wins legitimately! And we have one second for you on happenings now Kenneth starting now.
KW: Well there's very little I can say in that amount of time...
NP: At the end of that round Kenneth Williams leapt forward from fourth place into third place!
KW: Ohhh! Ohhhhh he eggs you on to think you're something good and then he lets you down!
NP: Alongside Sheila Hancock. But Clement Freud is still in the lead. Clement your turn to begin, the subject hokum. Can you talk to us about hokum for 60 seconds starting now.
CF: Hokum is an expression given to denote something which is untrue, quite often dishonest, and as frequently as not, a conman's trick of some kind. For instance if a salesman of vacuum cleaners attempts to get into your house by putting his foot into the door and refusing to let go when you push, and then throws a bag of flour onto the carpet, promising that with the aid of a few simple devices such as a tulip and a daffodil, not to mention a radiogram, he can refit the entire staircase with linoleum, that could well be said to be on the side of hokum. But using that very word, I am reminded of a friend of mine who was called Ephraim K Hokum...
NP: Peter Jones why have you challenged?
PJ: Deviation, he's talking about this subject reminding him of something else. He actually said it, that reminds me of a friend of mine, he said.
NP: Ephraim E Hokum.
CF: That's the name on the card!
NP: You see the point is Peter, in this game, provided he keeps going which is jolly difficult when you've got three other people breathing down your neck with buzzers in their hands, and doesn't deviate...
PJ: Yes I've never managed it yet!
KW: That's deviation, that's deviation too. Nobody's breathing down anybody's neck!
NP: You breathe down Clement Freud's neck regularly! It's jolly difficult for him...
PJ: Well Sheila Hancock certainly hasn't breathed down mine!
NP: Oh well, maybe if she did, you, yes! Anyway he wasn't um deviating from the subject of hokum so he has a point and there are five seconds left Clement starting now.
CF: He lived not far from the shore in a mansion called Chez Hokum, where many...
NP: Clement Freud started with the subject of hokum, finished with hokum, and it really was hokum!
KW: Throughout, yes!
NP: And has just increased his lead by two at the end of that round. Sheila your turn to begin, the subject for you is keeping a book. A very wide range of thought probably that will give you, but would you talk about it for 60 seconds starting now.
SH: I believe this is something to do with horses. But I'm not going to venture any opinion on that. I have a book which I keep regularly. In fact I couldn't exist without it. It's a sort of diary. On one side, it says "things to do today". And on the other side it is the same thing...
NP: Clement Freud got in first.
CF: Repetition of things.
NP: Yes and side as well I'm afraid Sheila. So Clement you have a point and there are 41 seconds for keeping a book starting now.
CF: One of the best ways of keeping a book is on a racecourse. You enter all bets on one side and on the opposing page you fill in such transactions upon which you are likely to lose money. And yet this pastime is known as making a book. Quite recently because so many people lost their shares...
NP: Kenneth Williams why have you challenged?
KW: Well deviation, if it's known as making a book, it's not the subject which is keeping a book.
CF: Only recently.
KW: Well it's deviation from the subject.
NP: He was still keeping to the subject of keeping a book and he was giving illustration actually of er of a variation of this idea and what it means to other people. So I can't really agree with the challenge Kenneth and there are 18 seconds for Clement to continue, keeping a book, starting now.
CF: If you go to a public library and do the subject on the card, you're liable to a number of fines which mount from 2p for the first week in which you fail to return the volume in question to some great significant quantity amount like...
NP: So Clement Freud was not only keeping a book, he was keeping going in spite of challenges and he's increased his lead again at the end of that round. And Peter Jones it is your turn, the subject is things to do in a train. I don't know what prompted Ian Messiter to think of that subject but I'm sure you can talk to us about it for 60 seconds starting now.
PJ: First of all you must make certain that the train is not standing in a station. After that you can let the imagination have full rein depending on the number of passengers there are travelling with you in the compartment. If there are two, then a small game of cards would be quite appropriate. If the numbers are greater than that, then the, naturally, the type of game is er, has more possibilities...
NP: Kenneth Williams you've challenged. Why?
KW: Game twice.
NP: Yes I'm afraid there was more than one game going on in that compartment. We must travel with you some time Peter. Thirty-two seconds left for you Kenneth, having gained a point, and the subject, things to do on a train starting now.
KW: Well if you get in the train of the gown of the bride, it can be quite an experience. I did this when I was a very small boy, with an innocent chubby little face and golden ringlets falling over my eyes, which as you can see are Mediterranean blue. And they all said "what's he doing under there? Get him there with his little velvet suit!" which is how I got mixed up in the train in the first place...
NP: Well Kenneth Williams, I'm sure, has given all the naughty boys who listen to our programme many thoughts about what to do at the next wedding they go to! Kenneth you were speaking when the whistle went, you gain the extra point and you have crept up into second place but you're still quite a distance behind our leader who is still Clement Freud. And Clement Freud your turn to begin, on being very serious. That is the subject which we feel you should be able to talk about well, and Just A Minute will do starting now.
CF: When you have twice the score of those around you, and Kenneth Williams is asleep by your right-hand side, it is difficult to be anything but very serious. And yet I shall try. A man came up to another man and said "hello..."
NP: Ah Kenneth Williams has challenged.
CF: "...I have a conundrum.."
KW: Two man.
NP: There were two men yes, very close to each other.
CF: I thought he was asleep, I would never have...
NP: He was trying you out! Kenneth you have a point and there are 42 seconds for on being serious, I'm sorry, on being very serious, starting now.
KW: Well of course Cicero had the last word on this subject when he said "to be truly idle is to be industrious". And here I think one has the quality of deep consideration in so far as seriousness of mind is concerned. If we address ourselves most...
NP: Peter Jones has challenged. Why?
PJ: Hesitation. He seemed to be grinding to a halt altogether! Like a sort of gramophone which should be wound up or something!
NP: It was so quiet I could hardly hear whether he had ground to a halt or not! Um...
PJ: I think he was doing that on purpose!
NP: You think so? I don't know, he kept going, but he was going very slowly. I'm going to give the benefit of the doubt to Peter Jones and say you have 21 seconds Peter on being very serious starting now.
PJ: Sometimes the most amusing, witty and comical clowns can be very serious indeed...
KW: How true! How true! That is true! How very true that is!
NP: Keep going Peter!
PJ: Interrupting! What! Is he allowed to interrupt?
NP: No, of course he's not!
PJ: Well he, it's like bumping and boring!
NP: Yes it's like a game of dodgems.
PJ: He ought to be warned off altogether! By the stewards! It's not fair! No, no...
NP: You've been warned off the course...
CF: Stood down!
NP: You've been warned off the course, the penalty is you mustn't interrupt again for at least five seconds!
SH: Kenneth has got his comeuppance with Peter, hasn't he? (laughs)
PJ: Comeuppance? What's that mean?
SH: He's never been challenged for hesitating so much in his life!
PJ: Oh you've got to yield to me afterwards!
NP: So we're, I must tell you that we have very little time left in this show. And I actually said it was 20 seconds left, there were only, um... there were 20 seconds left when I said it! I'm so sorry, um, I was quite correct before, I'm getting rather confused. Um, I, Peter Jones has another point for a false challenge and there are eight seconds for you to continue Peter on being very serious starting now.
PJ: I wouldn't say that it is exactly an art form. But it is a knack which can be learned if you take lessons and have tuition for...
NP: Well at the end of that round, Peter Jones was speaking when the whistle went so he gained the extra point. And also as I said a little while ago, I'm afraid we have no more time left so we have to finish the game there. And the final result was that Sheila Hancock after doing so well last week trailed a little this week and was in fourth place. Peter Jones finished in third place, Kenneth Williams now in second place behind this week's winner who is Clement Freud! I'm sorry that we have no more time for Just A Minute. We do hope that you've enjoyed this particular edition of the game, from all of us here good-bye.
ANNOUNCER: The chairman of Just A Minute was Nicholas Parsons, the programme was devised by Ian Messiter and produced by David Hatch.