WELCOME TO JUST A MINUTE!
starring KENNETH WILLIAMS, CLEMENT FREUD, PETER JONES and SHEILA HANCOCK, chaired by NICHOLAS PARSONS (Radio, 1 February 1972)
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 as you've just heard we are delighted to welcome back Sheila Hancock to do battle with these...
APPLAUSE FROM THE AUDIENCE
NP: ...to do battle with these three tough male exponents of the game and show that it isn't entirely a man's world. Once again I'm going to ask them all to speak if they can for just one minute on some unlikely subject that I will give them without hesitation, without repetition and without deviating from the subject which is written on the card in front of me. According to how well they do this, they will gain points or their opponents will. And let us begin the show this week with Clement Freud. Clement the subject that Ian Messiter's chosen for you to start with is quince. Can you talk to us for 60 seconds on quince starting now.
CLEMENT FREUD: If you were to go into a chemist's shop and request some talcum powder, and the assistant came up from behind and made a remark of doubtful tact, you might give a quince which is a quick wince. There is another definition of this word which is a sort of fruit.
NP: Kenneth Williams has challenged.
KENNETH WILLIAMS: Well hesitation.
NP: I agree with your challenge so you gain a point for a correct challenge and you take over the subject of quince and there are 36 seconds left starting now.
KW: It was predicted before I was born, so I have been informed, that my mother might have quins. And when she was told this, apparently the alarm and despondency was appoling to behold! That is a word I myself have coined and I think I should be given due credit after all, where that kind of knowledge is due. And in terms of recognition...
NP: Sheila Hancock has challenged. Why?
SHEILA HANCOCK: Oh rubbish! Deviation! I mean he...
NP: You mean he's gone away from talking about quince....
NP: .... he's now talking about the word that he's coined.
NP: I would agree, that is deviation Sheila, so you gain a point for a correct challenge and you take over the subject with 10 seconds to go starting now.
SH: This is a name of a fairy in A Midsummer Night's Dream. And also...
NP: Clement Freud has challenged you. Why?
CF: He was not a fairy.
NP: I quite agree.
SH: I got mixed up with Peas Blossom and the human, didn't I?
NP: Yes because he was a...
SH: Go on then, Clement Freud, get on with it!
NP: Clement Freud has a point for a correct challenge and he has six seconds on quince starting now.
CF: If you take these fruit and boil then down, you make something called a quince cheese which...
NP: Those of you who may not know, that whistle tells us that 60 seconds are up. And whoever is speaking at that particular moment gains an extra point. On this occasion it was Clement Freud, so at the end of that round he has a lead of one over everybody else. Sheila Hancock will you begin the second round...
NP: Sheila, if I was sent to the Moon.
SH: Oh, meaning me or you?
NP: You use that phrase...
NP: ...so it's obviously about you.
NP: And you have 60 seconds and you start now.
SH: I wouldn't like it at all. Judging by the photographs that we've had reflected back to us, it looks a very dreary place...
NP: Peter Jones has challenged, why?
PETER JONES: Well they haven't been reflected back to us...
SH: They have, they're bounced off a satellite!
PJ: Bounced but not reflected.
SH: Same thing!
NP: No actually I think scientifically speaking you're probably correct. They're not reflected, I don't know whether, can they be? Any scientists in the audience? Can they be reflected?
SH: Yes of course they can!
NP: I will put it to the audience!
PJ: I wanted to say something because during all that business about quinces, I didn't speak at all! And I thought I'd better er get in, you know, otherwise people would think it was a three handed game!
NP: But obviously you can have things that are reflected back from the Moon, as well as transmitted. So Sheila, it's an incorrect challenge, you gain a point therefore, keep the subject, and there are 52 seconds left starting now.
SH: It appears to be rather dusty, and it's difficult to stand on your feet without floating away. Therefore you have to wear rather unattractive shoes, and I like wearing pretty ones. Also I'm not frightfully keen on that great big suit you have to wear. I think...
NP: Peter Jones has challenged you again.
PJ: Repetition of wear.
NP: All right Peter you have a correct challenge, you gain a point and the subject, 34 seconds, if I were sent to the Moon starting now.
PJ: Well they would obviously have run out of astronauts if they er sent me because I shouldn't really be equipped to make the journey. I'm not keen on going very far even in this country and to be actually catapulted or shot, exploded or rocketed, to another planet fills me with awe. Now I dare say it could be that I was being punished in some way and that was the equivalent in the last century of sending people to a penal colony in Australia, Tasmania...
NP: So Peter Jones kept going magnificently on something that he would not like to do, spoke for quite a long time, gained the extra point for speaking when the whistle went. At the end of that round Peter, Sheila and Clement all have two points, Kenneth has one, it's neck and neck.
CRIES OF "AWWWW" FROM THE AUDIENCE
NP: Oh we know whose side the audience are on this week! Right Kenneth Williams it's your turn to begin and the subject we've got for you is the wind. A lot of it's been known to pass your lips. And Kenneth will you go on the wind for 60 seconds starting now.
KW: Well of course as the poet says "the sweet south that breathes upon a bank of violets". And this is probably one of the most beautiful evocations of wind. There is another version of the wind that blows the wind over the footprints so that none may track me, to my hurt. Hang the night with stars so that I can walk without stumbling. And cleanse me with bitter herbs and make me whole. Zephyr is one of the words which describes...
NP: Sheila Hancock challenged you, why?
SH: He said zephyr before, didn't he?
NP: No he didn't I'm afraid.
KW: I haven't discussed zephyr, you great fool!
SH: Oh I thought you said it right at the beginning. Go on then...
NP: Oh you're so charming, aren't you.
SH: Quotes poetry and then turns round all ugly, doesn't he.
NP: Yes that's right, he quotes poetry, gets all the audience going and then he loses it all by saying (in KW voice) "oh you great fool!" Twenty seconds left for you with the wind er what's your name, sorry? Oh Kenneth starting now.
KW: When it's blown through a very narrow aperture, people tend to refer to it as a draft. And of course...
NP: Clement Freud has challenged. Why?
CF: Repetition of of course.
NP: Well of course...
KW: Are you going to sit there and stand for that?
NP: Sit there and stand for it, i like that expression! I must remember that one! He did say of course before so as it's repetition Clement gets a point and the subject, 10 seconds on the wind Clement starting now.
CF: That which comes from the east tends to blow more fiercely in this country than when from the west...
NP: Kenneth Williams has challenged you, why?
KW: Two thans.
NP: Kenneth I think he said that which comes from the east tends to blow more fiercely than that which comes from the west.
KW: Oh I misheard!
SH: Two thats, two thats!
KW: I do apologise.
NP: There were two thats but...
SH: Two thats!
KW: Oh I meant that! I meant the two thats, that's what I meant. I'm so sorry, yes, that's what I meant!
NP: It's too late now, you said than, you said it with great confidence too.
KW: Well I meant repetition, it's for you to sort it out mate!
NP: That's what they do all the time, they just throw it in my lap and say sort that one out.
KW: Well he got me for of course.
NP: I know, it was accurate. I get so many letters about this, I have to be fair and accurate. It's very well listened, the audience were on your side but you challenged on than and it was a that. So Clement continues with four seconds on the wind starting now.
CF: North wind howls down from Scotland and ...
NP: Clement was speaking then when the whistle went, he gains the extra point and increases his lead at the end of that round. Peter Jones your turn to begin, the subject is confetti. Can you talk to us about confetti for 60 seconds starting now.
PJ: It's delightful stuff! It's made of paper, it comes in...
NP: Kenneth Williams has challenged.
KW: Three its. It's delightful stuff, it's made of paper, it comes.
PJ: I thought little words, you explained to me when I first started...
NP: Well I'm not, I'm not going to bother...
KW: If I've been got on of course, you're going to be got on it, mate!
NP: And from now on, such little challenges, such trivial challenges as it, like that, I think we're going to ignore. We won't count any points for that and let Peter Jones continue with confetti with 55 seconds...
KW: Life of Reilly! Isn't it marvellous!
PJ: Well you were saying of course so many times, I thought it was an impediment! And I didn't challenge you!
PJ: You won't even let me say it's two or three times?
KW: You're just catching on to the fact that you've got an impediment! I've never heard so many its!
NP: You can't go on saying it forever Peter.
PJ: No, no, I won't say it forever! I hadn't got saying it forever in mind!
NP: But if you've got confetti in mind, will you continue for 55 seconds starting now.
PJ: Many different colours, yellow, orange, blue, green, red, white, never black. And it comes in a variety of shapes, square, round, triangular, diamond shaped, and sometimes in the form of presents. Now this is thrown on gala occasions and at carnivals, sometimes weddings. Not at my own, which took place in Reno, Nevada, because they didn't have any there at the time. Now no doubt, many years later they are selling wedding kits with...
NP: Clement Freud challenged.
CF: Repetition of wedding.
NP: I'm afraid there was.
PJ: Ah yes.
NP: You said wedding before.
PJ: Well I'm glad there hasn't been! But um...
NP: You can only have one wedding Peter so there we are. Clement had a correct challenge, he gains a point, 17 seconds on confetti Clement starting now.
CF: Con is Italian for with. And fetti is a small kind of pasta, not unlike spaghetti, macaroni, lasagne or fettucini for which the word is actually an abbreviation. But at my own wedding which was not held in Reno...
NP: Peter Jones challenged. Why?
PJ: Repetition of word.
NP: Yes. The word, that's right.
PJ: He said word at the beginning and then he just said word again...
NP: Yes, yes, on the sign and so forth. Right Peter, one second, well got in just before. You're up to beat Clement Freud at his usual game, one second on confetti starting now.
PJ: Rainbow Inn...
NP: Peter Jones was then speaking as the whistle went, he gained the extra point, he's now two points behind our leader at the end of that round who is still Clement Freud. Clement your turn to begin again. The subject is the book I plan to write. And once again I remind you, you take the phrase and you use it, the book I plan to write, 60 seconds starting now.
CF: The book I plan to write will be a slim volume containing a number of words which Peter Jones would obviously think are repeated from previous pages. The book that I shall write will be original, scintillating, and as I think I might have mentioned before, of limited wordage or verbiage. It will contain poems and prose, an anthology of verse such as I love, and a mixture of different kinds of approaches to literary themes as one might...
NP: Peter Jones has challenged, why?
NP: I think it was more of a dry-up actually! His book had come to a halt in the middle somewhere. Peter hesitation is correct, you have a point and you have 23 seconds for the book I plan to write starting now.
PJ: I shall write one chapter at least about what a wonderful chairman you are. And how you adjudicated this game through thick and thin, in fair weather and in foul, sometimes kindly, sometimes not so...
NP: Clement Freud has challenged, why?
NP: Of what?
NP: Sometimes kindly sometimes, yes correct Clement, you have another point and there are eight seconds for the book I plan to write starting now.
CF: My publishers would like this to be covered in purple binding, but I personally insist on heliotrope or mauve...
NP: Heliotrope or mauve binding on the book of that anthology. At the end of that book Clement, you lead Peter Jones by three and the other two by more than somewhat. No they're only just a little way behind Peter in third and fourth place. Sheila Hancock your turn to begin, the subject innocence. It's not an easy one is it really. But anyway will you talk to us about it if you can for 60 seconds starting now.
SH: It's something about which I know a lot. Because I spend my whole time believing the best of things and people, and discovering the worst...
NP: Kenneth Williams has challenged, why?
KW: Deviation, she's mixing up trust with innocence.
KW: If you're believing the best of people, then you're trusting them which is nothing to do with innocence. Innocence doesn't even take whether you should trust them or not into consideration!
SH: If they turn out to be wrong, then you've been innocent in thinking that they're right.
KW: A new born babe is totally innocent and he never thinks anyone's going to do him, does he?
KW: Well you're not a new born babe! Look at the size of you! Good gracious!
NP: Actually I think, I think Kenneth has a very good point...
KW: of course I have! A very good point!
NP: I think you can be... oh shut up! Kenneth you have a point and the subject, 51 seconds for innocence starting now.
KW: It is appropriate that I should discuss this subject, because indeed it is something which only occurs with the child. Once we see through the glass darkly...
NP: Sheila Hancock has challenged.
SH: Deviation, why is it indeed appropriate that he should discuss it if it's only with the child?
KW: Because I know about kids, that's why?
SH: Oh rubbish!
NP: In other words you mean it is a fallacy to say that a child is innocent, a child...
SH: No, no, it's a fallacy that he...
KW: (screaming) I am a child at heart! You see this is the whole point! I am an undeveloped thing! I'm embryonic you see.
KW: I'm undeveloped you see! I'm undeveloped!
SH: I'll give you that! I'll give you that!
CF: Yes he has a point!
SH: You can have the point!
SH: You're the most undeveloped thing I've ever met!
NP: What they will do to gain points in this game! Publicly admit their undevelopment! So 37 seconds on under-develop... I mean, I'm sorry, 37 seconds on innocence Kenneth starting now.
KW: And when you see them in their perambulators and their pink cheeks and lovely eyes, looking unblinkingly, knowing there is no such thing as crime, negligence, ill-usage, malignity, no...
NP: Sheila Hancock has challenged you again.
SH: I dispute that all children in prams know that there's no such thing as ill-ugis, ill-usage.
KW: She can't even say it! Aint she got a nerve!
SH: I, I ill used Ellie Jane a lot because I never knew how to put a nappy on her, I got stuck with pins a lot. So I mean she knew that you could be ill used.
NP: (laughs) Yes and a child's innocence is er a very much adult way of looking at things. And emotionally they're not as innocent as that.
SH: Exactly! You took the words out of my mouth! Would you like to finish?
NP: I haven't enough innocence! Sheila you have 20 seconds with a point gained of course, to continue on innocence starting now.
SH: It is very difficult to go through life being innocent. Because the more experience you gain, the less you have of it. And life is a...
NP: Peter Jones has challenged, why?
PJ: Repetition of life.
NP: Yes we've had more than one life.
SH: Well it does go on.
NP: So once again Peter gets in just before the whistle, three seconds to go...
NP: ...innocence Peter starting now.
PJ: It's so long since I experienced this quality!
NP: Everybody gained points in that round except Clement Freud. Peter Jones speaking when the whistle went gained the extra one, so he's now only one point behind our leader who is still Clement. But Sheila and Kenneth are both creeping up on them. Kenneth the subject for you now is something which we love to hear you talk about, something historical. Nero. Would you like to tell us something about Nero in 60 seconds starting now.
KW: Well he was a very beautiful redheaded youth. And as an attorney we are told that in the Senate he won the case for roads taxation. And they were so pleased they pout his head on all the coins. Later, very much like Henry the Eighth, he became an appalling monstrosity. And used his position with appalling callous...
NP: Clement has challenged you.
NP: Appalling yes. he might have been appalling but you can't say it in twice when you talk about it in this game, alas Kenneth. So Clement has a point and the subject, 37 seconds, Nero, starting now.
CF: Nero comes to our attention particularly for fiddling while Rome burnt. But we're never told on what gas mark, on what setting of electricity, or how else the capital city of Gaul as it then was in Italy... now...
NP: No yes, you're right, you gave yourself... Peter...
CF: There's a verb missing there somewhere.
KW: Well it certainly wasn't Gaul!
NP: Yeah it certainly wasn't Gaul...
KW: I know.
NP: I thought you paused because you made a mistake.
KW: It was a mistake, it wasn't Gaul dear.
CF: Among other, other things...
KW: No, Gaul is now present day France.
KW: You got hopelessly mixed up!
SH: You didn't light your whatsit though!
NP: You didn't buzz and you were sitting beside him!
PJ: We've crossed the Rubicon now, I think.
KW: Well I didn't want to, because you see I am by nature modest!
KW: When somebody's under way, I always believe, Nick, in giving them a chance! After all, isn't that what we're here for? To try and share and celebrate, 50-50.
PJ: I'm going to...
NP: Don't you think also Kenneth that you were a bit upset because you were going so beautifully on Nero, you were really offended that your friend should have interrupted you!
KW: Yes it was a hurtful thing to do...
NP: Appalling! Appalling!
KW: I thought an ungallant...
NP: Well don't let your hurt show so much, get back in the game! Because you knew Gaul was France, but Peter got him on hesitation as Clement knew what it was, that's why he hesitated. Eighteen seconds, Nero, Peter, starting now.
PJ: As any keen race-goer will tell you, Nero was a three year old in 1947 and was second in the Cambridgeshire Handicap. Later he raced at Newmarket and Chelmsford and...
NP: Clement Freud has challenged.
CF: No racecourse at Chelmsford.
NP: There might be but Nero didn't race there anyway. So Clement I agree with your challenge, you have three seconds on Nero starting now.
CF: Fiddle, hey, diddle...
NP: Clement Freud was speaking then when the whistle went and he's managed to increase his lead over all the others at the end of that round. Peter Jones your turn to begin, the subject nonsense. Something in which is used and spoken about a great deal on this show but can you talk to us about it for 60 seconds starting now.
PJ: I've never been too keen on it even when it's been written by experts. Say for instance it's 10 past six, I'd better try and talk some of it, I hope you'll excuse me. It's er three-tiered theatre with a lot of dim faces, the lights aren't too good. One topless waitress in gold holding up the box there...
NP: Kenneth Williams has challenged.
KW: Because he's not discussing nonsense, he's giving us factual observation.
NP: I think that Peter was giving an excellent demonstration of nonsense, so I'm with him on this one. He has a point and the subject he keeps, 40 seconds left starting now.
PJ: Alice in Wonderland is another example of it. Alice and the er March...
NP: Clement Freud you've got in first then.
CF: Repetition of Alice.
NP: Of Alice alas yes. So Clement you gain the point, 36 seconds on nonsense starting now.
CF: Arthur Askey, Jimmy Wheeler and Nicholas Parsons are as unlikely a trio of serious actors as I have ever seen in Midsummer Night's Dream at Her Majesty's Theatre on a Tuesday afternoon when as most people know there is no matinee. And yet the box office, declining to sell me tickets for a performance which did not take place, announced over the loudspeaker silently to people who were not listening that one way or another a rhomboid, a parallelogram...
NP: A fine example of nonsense. Clement Freud went on very well and he's gained more points because he was also speaking when the whistle went at the end of that round. Sheila your turn to begin, the subject umbrage. Can you talk to us about umbrage for 60 seconds starting now.
SH: This is something I am trying not to take, because you allowed Kenneth's challenge about my definition of innocence. I am not going to sulk and hide my head and experience umbrage because I feel that it is a despicable way to carry on and make not for progress. However a lot of children are inclined to do this when they feel sulky and I say to them "life is too short to feel like that, my darling. Do not feel and..."
NP: Kenneth got in first.
SH: Orgh! Oooohh what a relief!
KW: Well I, I was bored!
SH: So was I!
NP: You were bored because she said feel twice.
KW: That's exactly what I meant, yes, repetition!
NP: That's right, well she paused herself because she knew she said feel twice. So there we are, Kenneth, she did indeed say feel twice, so you have a point and you have 27 seconds for the subject of umbrage starting now.
KW: This is something which is taken by people who genuinely feel they have been very badly treated. And I think it's done with justification. After all there are a lot of places in this world where people do say very rude things...
NP: Peter Jones has challenged you.
PJ: Repetition of people.
NP: Yes there were quite a lot of people in that particular... (in rural accent) You got so carried away with your own impersonation there you didn't know what you were doing. You were loving every moment of it weren't you? (normal voice) So people gains Peter Jones a point there, 16 seconds for umbrage Peter starting now.
PJ: Sometimes people leap up and walk out of rooms and it is described as having taken umbrage. I haven't myself ever experienced this in person though I have, as I say, heard of other...
NP: Well Peter Jones was then speaking when the whistle went and he gained the extra point and increased the position that he had. And I'm afraid I must tell you we have no more time in this particular edition of Just A Minute. So it remains for me to give you the final score. Kenneth did come up from a rather bad fourth in that round to a poor fourth! Sheila finished a weak third. Peter Jones came with a flourish at the end into a very strong second position, he did very well, he had 12 points. But he was one point, only one point behind this week's winner, Clement Freud! We do hope that you have enjoyed this edition of Just A Minute, 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 Simon Brett.