NICHOLAS PARSONS: Welcome to Just A Minute!


NP: Thank you, thank you, hello, my name is Nicholas Parsons. And as the Minute Waltz fades away once more it is my pleasure to welcome our many listeners, not only in this country but throughout the world. But also to welcome to the show this week four highly talented, clever, individual players of this game. And once again they're going to show their humorous invention, their verbal dexterity and their creative ingenuity as they speak on a subject that I give them, and they try and do that without hesitation, repetition or deviation. And those four individuals are Paul Merton, Julian Clary, Tony Hawks and Clement Freud. Please welcome all four of them! Beside me sits Claire Bartlett who is going to help me keep the score, and blow her whistle when the 60 seconds are up. And this particular edition of Just A Minute is coming from Fowey in that wonderful beautiful county of Cornwall. And we are part of the Daphne du Maurier Festival here in this tented village in Cornwall. And we start this week with Clement Freud and who better. Clement, the subject is, oh how apt! How to make a Cornish pastie. Tell us something about that Clement, in this game starting now.

CLEMENT FREUD: You make a Cornish pastie with pastry, gravy...


CF: ... meat, onions and potatoes!


NP: Paul challenged, Paul has challenged.

PAUL MERTON: Well I don't know why, but that's clearly deviation!


PM: Clearly! That's not the traditional Cornish pastie recipe at all!

NP: I think with this, I think when a Cornish audience responds en masse like that it must be deviation! I have a suspicion it was the word gravy that threw you, was that...


NP: Well there we are, that's the deviation. And you have a point of course for a correct challenge Paul, you take over the subject, you have 54 seconds available, how to make a Cornish pastie starting now.

PM: Well it's very much as Clement said, apart from the gravy! What you do is once you've put all the ingredients together, you then sort of fold the pastry over, get a little crinkle...


NP: Ah Clement Freud challenged.

CF: You don't!

NP: Well that could be his Cornish pastie, couldn't it?

CF: Mine was my Cornish pastie!

NP: So I think that was an incorrect challenge, you still have 45 seconds, I know you don't want it! And another point of course Paul, how to make a Cornish pastie starting now.

PM: Put the oven on. That's always very important because the heat source is something that's going to make the pastie actually bake. So once you've got the dish in front of you, you pick it, if you've got gloves which are impervious to heat. Some that are made out of asbestos would probably be wrong, because that's shown to be a health hazard. So instead get something that has a thick cloth to it, then pick up the Cornish...


NP: Ah Clement challenged.

CF: We had pick up.

PM: Oh!

NP: Yes! You picked up before. So Clement a correct challenge, you gain a point for that of course, 25 seconds are still available, tell us more about how to make a Cornish pastie starting now.

CF: I think you would be foolish to make a Cornish pastie when everyone should make lots of Cornish pasties. While you were at it, whether you use gravy or not...


NP: Tony challenged.

TONY HAWKS: You shouldn't make a Cornish pastie when you're at it! It's just stupid! It's a waste of, you know, concentrate on one thing at a time!

NP: Tony we give you a bonus point for that, Clement was interrupted so he gets a point for that, he keeps the subject, 14 seconds, how to make a Cornish pastie, Clement starting now.

CF: There are people who say....


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: Well there is repetition of gravy. He said gravy before. And then Tony buzzed, but he said gravy twice.

NP: He did say gravy twice.

PM: He did.

CF: Oh you can't, we've never allowed retrospective challenges!

NP: You know what I always do, I always try to be as fair as possible. I always try to balance everything out and I give the benefit of the doubt to you Clement, 13 seconds, how to make a Cornish pastie starting now.

CF: Balancing a Cornish pastie is a very difficult thing to do. You have to go to a school where balance is taught between pottery and history, and get a leek...


NP: Clement Freud was speaking as the whistle went and whoever is speaking in this game when the whistle goes gains an extra point. So he's naturally got a lead ahead of Paul Merton and Tony Hawks and Julian Clary in that order. And Tony Hawks, will you take the next round and the subject is shells. Tell us something about shells in Just A Minute starting now.

TH: They say if you hold a shell up to your ear, you can hear the sea. But this is nearly always the case because you are standing on a beach at the time! Which is where shells are predominantly found. Earlier today here in Cornwall, the lovely village of Fowey, I walked along the harbour area, possibly the beach, I don't know what you'd call...


NP: Um Julian challenged.

JULIAN CLARY: You repetish, sorry, you, you repeated beach.

TH: I did.

NP: He did repeat beach.

TH: I repe-repeteated.

NP: Julian you've got in, we're going to hear from you. And there are 38 seconds to tell us something about shells starting now.

JC: It's all very well people going on about how pretty shells are and how they hold them to their ears and everything. But what they don't realise is those shells are actually creatures homes at one time. That's where they lived. And somehow they've been ripped out, away from their mother's breast. And that shell is then being used for decorative purposes. And I think it's awful. Whenever I look at a shell, I see the organic hole and I imagine the little thing wriggling away in there, thinking "oh I'll just do some tidying, maybe a bit of hoovering. Why don't I rearrange the furniture inside my shell?"


NP: Julian went for a considerable time on that and did very well, and also speaking as the whistle went, gained that extra point, and er he's equal with Paul Merton in second place, just behind our leader Clement Freud. And Julian it's also your turn to begin, the subject is the Celts. Tell us something about the Celts in this game starting now.

JC: The Celts ate a lot of shellfish, which was what made them very strong and boisterous. And Lord, they liked a good ruck! But there aren't many of them around nowadays. They've been pushed round the outsides of the country. But they've still got their old funny ways. The Celts like to worship trees, and many an evening I've spent with my arms round a sapling. Celts generally predominate, well, in Cornwall of course and Ireland and Scotland and you can tell what they look like from the shape of their heads. Quite large...


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: You can tell what they look like by the shape of their heads?

NP: That's what he said.

PM: That's nonsense!

NP: I think so, you can't always tell a Celt by the shape of their head.

PM: Well yeah, exactly! You know...

NP: They're all different, I mean...

PM: Exactly!

JC: No, what I'm saying is you can tell what they look like...

PM: By looking at them!

JC: The faces...

PM: That's, that's a revelation to me!

JC: No, but if you can't, if you can't look at their face and you come up behind them and just feel their heads, you can see what they look like.

PM: Well excuse me! I'm not going to go round feeling the back of heads of Celts just to please you!

JC: Well it wouldn't do for us all to be the same, would it!

NP: I think I have to give the benefit of the doubt on this occasion to Paul Merton. So Paul you have a point and the subject and 25 seconds, the Celts starting now.

PM: I come from Irish stock. My grandfather I never met, my mother's father. He was a fisherman, I think his name was Peter and he was lost at sea. And so unfortunately we never sort of came across him. It's a great shame because I wonder what he would have been like. He was quite tall apparently and my cousin...


NP: Ah Tony challenged.

TH: Well I was going to get him on deviation because he was only talking about one Celt and the subject is Celts.

NP: But it doesn't matter, the subject's Celts, you can still talk about one Celt.

TH: Yes, so I've decided to withdraw my challenge. I felt inspired and I wasn't.

NP: No, no, no, it's lovely to have you keen.

TH: Thank you.

NP: And nine seconds available for you Paul starting now.

PM: Whenever he went out towards the sea, he had a Cornish pastie sticking in his pocket, because he was an old sailor in them days...


NP: Ah Clement Freud challenged.

CF: Repetition of old.

PM: When?

CF: You said old before.

PM: Ah that would be the repetition aspect then!

CF: Yes!

PM: I don't remember saying old before Nicholas. And you don't by the look on your face.

NP: No.

PM: So you know...

NP: Paul you have the benefit of the doubt. Clement had it last time, you got it this time, so that's two seconds on the Celts with you starting now.

PM: If you go to Edinburgh...


NP: Clement challenged.

CF: Repetition of if.

PM: Not this round!

CF: Oh yes!

PM: No, no, no!

CF: You had the benefit last time!

NP: He hasn't said if in this round.

PM: No!

NP: No. So Paul...

CF: How about the benefit...

NP: Another point, one second, the Celts starting now.

PM: Wales...


NP: So Paul Merton speaking as the whistle went, and with other points in that round, gained the extra point for speaking and has now moved forward. He's now in the lead ahead of Clement Freud, then Julian Clary and then Tony Hawks. And Paul it's your turn to begin, the subject here now is stealing the show. Sixty seconds are available, tell us something about it starting now.

PM: It's virtually impossible to steal this show when you're playing Just A Minute because everybody is so good. They all have their individual roles to play. And I'm convinced that if they listen to me praising them, they're not going to impress me and they're not going to interrupt me and they're not...


NP: Ah Julian challenged.

JC: Hesitation and foibling around!

PM: Foibling around?

NP: They're not going to.

JC: Repetition.

NP: Yes that's right, well done Julian. Forty-five seconds for you on stealing the show Julian starting now.

JC: I once did a show called My Glittering Passage with a camp chorus girl in called Michael Dalton, who was notorious for stealing the show. We didn't realise this until we saw some photographs of the finale. And there we were, we would be...


NP: Ah Tony.

JC: You'll never know!

TH: I'm sure... I'm sure you'll get the subject back shortly, and then you'll be able to finish it, but there was a hesitation.

NP: There was a hesitation as he stumbled over the word. So Tony you have the subject of stealing the show and there are 30 seconds starting now.

TH: I intend to steal this show after it's been recorded. I'm going to get the cassettes and I'm going to run off into this...


NP: Ah Clement Freud challenged.

CF: Repetition of going. Going, going.

NP: Yes, well listened Clement. Twenty-four seconds, stealing the show, starting now.

CF: If you took a very large laundry basket to the New Tate Gallery, and put into it all the Mattises and Picassos, you could rightly be accused of stealing the show. That is the only thing at the moment in that gallery...


NP: Ah Julian challenged.

JC: Well they wouldn't all fit in a laundry basket!

NP: Deviation, yes. I thought you were going to have him for repetition. Right, so Julian, you've got back in again, another point to you, nine seconds, stealing the show starting now.

JC: You could see in this photograph...


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: Repetition of gravy! Photograph! He said photograph before.

NP: Yeah he did have the photograph before. Seven seconds for you Paul on stealing the show starting now.

PM: The one time I stole the show, I remember it very well. Hackney Empire, Julian Clary's production. And everybody loved me whereas they booed him...


NP: So Paul Merton was again speaking as the whistle went, again an extra point for doing so and has increased his lead at the end of the round. And Julian it's your turn to begin, the subject is how to celebrate your birthday. Tell us something about that in this game starting now.

JC: It's my birthday next Saturday, as luck would have it. And I'm going to have a garden party at my friend Hector's place. So think of me at nine o'clock with a saveloy shoved down my throat! We're going to have lots of bunting and maybe a little glass of pink champagne, and an awful lot of my friends will be in attendance...


NP: Ah Clement Freud challenged.

CF: Friend.

JC: I said friends. A lot of my friends.

NP: It was my friends.

CF: Friend and friends.

NP: It was friend and friends.

CF: Sorry.

NP: Forty-one seconds with Julian, an incorrect challenge, another point, how to celebrate your birthday starting now.

JC: I'm a little bit worried about the queue for the bathroom. Because Cleo Rockus is a close personal show business chum, and I don't want her to have stand round next to the likes of Paul Merton. I don't know if you're coming or not? Have I invited you? Probably not. Um...


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: Repetition of not!

JC: Yeah!

NP: I'm afraid he's right! So Paul you have 25 seconds, tell us something about how to celebrate your birthday starting now.

PM: Well you've got to be careful how you celebrate your birthday. If it's a big birthday like a 40th, then I suppose you've got to have a really good drink. But you don't want to feel that terrible the next day so you have to take it in moderation. For my particular birthday, the one between 39 and 41, oh I had a terrible party...


NP: Um Tony challenged.

TH: Repetition of 40.

NP: No he didn't say that, he said 39 and... oh 41!

TH: Forty and 41! He said 40 twice!

NP: Well listened!


NP: I love your enthusiasm and commitment audience, but those are the rules of Just A Minute. So he did repeat the word 40, nine seconds, how to celebrate your birthday starting now Tony.

TH: A really good way to celebrate your birthday is to invite lots of people round to your house and give them cakes, maybe cups of tea, other things...


NP: So Tony Hawks speaking when the whistle went gained an extra point, he's now one ahead of Paul Merton, and two ahead of Julian Clary and two or three ahead of Clement Freud in that order. As we move forward with Paul to start and the subject now is apathy. Tell us something about apathy in Just A Minute starting now.

PM: Well it's a characteristic of the teenager, isn't it, to be apathetic. As I sit here in this marvellous tented auditorium with the rain paddling down on the roof. And those listeners who are India or China will probably think "why is somebody frying bacon?" Apathy is a terrible emotion when you've got it. It grips the soul. You sit around all day not doing anything. You can't find the energy to get up and turn the radio off, when you hear drizzling coming down in digital stereo. Imagine all those people who invented radio like Marconi...


PM: Oh!

NP: Clement Freud challenged.

CF: Repetition.

NP: Ah yes but they did enjoy that very much. And you did go for, oh you went for, um, you went for 35 seconds.

PM: Did I?

NP: Yes indeed, great! But a correct challenge from Clement, and the rain is getting stronger on the tented village. so if anybody thinks we are frying up here, it is not true. It is that at the Daphne du Maurier Festival, it all takes place in a tent. I'm sure you'll bear with us.

PM: Are you, are you telling them that it's in a tent? Did you know it's in a tent?

NP: I'm telling them...

PM: Have any of you looked up?

NP: I'm telling our listeners because this goes round the world and they want to know why suddenly the acoustics have changed. And that is the reason.

PM: Yes.

NP: And so Clement, you have the subject now and you have 25 seconds on apathy starting now.

CF: A place where you will not find apathy is Home Park in Plymouth where the pilgrims play such inspired football that they won the third division last year, and will almost definitely succeed...


NP: Ah Tony challenged.

TH: This is blatant ingratiation! Nothing whatsoever to do with the subject of apathy.

NP: If you're talking about apathy, you want to talk about it, and not where you don't find it. So I think maybe Tony had a correct challenge and um 10 seconds available, Tony, starting now.

TH: Recently I read this book on apathy. It was so good I couldn't be bothered to put it down! And this is the thing about apathy. It stops you from being...


NP: Ah Paul challenged.

PM: It's not really apathy when you can't be bothered to stop reading a book. That's not apathy, that's carrying on reading a book.

NP: No, he got enthusiastic. If I had to give it against Clement on the other challenge, I have to give it against you Tony on this one.

TH: I couldn't be bothered to put it down, is that not apathy?

NP: No because you were...

PM: You're doing something! You're reading, you're...

TH: I love this programme! The things we argue about! It's fantastic!

NP: I know!

PM: If I said I couldn't be bothered to stop gardening...

NP: Yes...

PM: That's not apathy is it?

NP: Paul you're absolutely right.

PM: I am, aren't I?

NP: You're right and you have the benefit of the doubt. And you've cleverly got in with half a second to go. That's not apathy!

PM: No!

NP: Um that's keenness. Right, starting now.

PM: Lowestoft and gravy...


NP: Well it's still very close. Paul Merton speaking as the whistle went, he's now still equal with Tony Hawks. They're both in the lead, just a few ahead, just one or two ahead, sorry, of Julian Clary and Clement Freud in that order. And Clement it's your turn to begin. The subject is wreckers. Tell us something about wreckers in this game starting now.

CF: Wreckers on the whole are people who wreck.


NP: Tony challenged.

TH: Again, he's exhausted his knowledge on this subject!

PM: He had the good grace to stop! If only we all did that!

TH: Yeah!

NP: Tony got in first, 55 seconds, wreckers Tony starting now.

TH: I don't think I know a great deal more about this subject than Clement Freud. Although I imagine from the response from this Cornwall audience that it has some reference to wrecks that are found, possibly at sea, or near...


NP: Ah Paul challenged.

PM: They're not found inland, are they!

NP: No...

PM: You don't get wrecks in land.

NP: In Just A Minute, let's be fair in this, a wreck can be washed up on the shore and then it would be on land.

CF: Look at yourself!


NP: I think all those who are clapping should now leave! It was an incorrect challenge from Paul, Tony you still have it, wreckers, 42 seconds starting now.

TH: My friend Ron I consider to be a wrecker, because he's very into stock car racing, where they take a magnificent old vehicle, drive it round a track, and then, lo and behold, before you know it, it's a wrecker of a vehicle itself. Now when I was once in Corn... place...


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: Well hesitation I'm afraid.

NP: Yep, yes yes, it was. Twenty-two seconds, tell us something about wreckers Paul starting now.

PM: Perhaps I'm not the only one here who's nervous at sitting around with all this electrical equipment, as the rain is coming down on the tent above us. What a terrible wrecking effect it would have on this show...


NP: Julian challenged.

JC: Hesitation.

NP: I'm not surprised, yes! After the thoughts he put in our mind. Eleven seconds, wreckers with you Julian starting now.

JC: There's a gay club in Plymouth called Wreckers where you think you've met a friend for the night, you take them home. As soon as you turn the lights out, they disappear. Some kind of obscure reference there to wreckers...


NP: And Julian Clary speaking as the whistle went gained that extra point, he's still in third place, only just behind Paul Merton and Tony Hawks is one ahead, and then Clement Freud is trailing a little. And just for anybody who may only just now have tuned in. The background noise you hear genuinely is torrential rain coming on to this tented village where we're performing here at the Daphne du Maurier festival in Fowey. So...

PM: Bacon's ready!

NP: Yes!

PM: Who wants sausages?

NP: It's raining as only it can rain somewhere on the Cornish coast! Tony it's your turn to begin, the subject is the worst hotel I ever stayed in.


NP: Why do you laugh? Oh there are some in Cornwall, are there? Right, talk on the subject Tony, starting now.

TH: I try not to stay in hotels, if I can avoid it, preferring caravans most of the time! However the worst hotel I ever stayed in was an improvised affair made out of a tent. And it had a slight leak in the roof. And I had a terrible evening with this drip coming through, and his name was...


NP: Paul challenged you.

PM: Deviation, you... hotels aren't made out of tents!

NP: No, no, he's right, but...

PM: You don't get tented hotels.

NP: No...

PM: Have you ever stayed in a hotel that was a tent, Nicholas?

NP: Um...

PM: You're a man of the world!

NP: Yes I did, in the desert.

PM: Did you really?

NP: In Dubai, you have a, you go and have a holiday in a tented village up in the desert in Dubai.

TH: Excellent! What great news for me!

NP: So you....

PM: Yes...

NP: You can have a hotel which is a tent.

PM: Okay.

NP: So um I'm afraid it was an incorrect challenge. Tony you've got another point, the worst hotel I ever stayed in starting now.

TH: So I called down to Reception. I said "do you realise what's going on up here?" And they said "this is room 324, you've made a ghastly error". Because the telephone system didn't work properly in this hotel, it was so bad. But I can tell you some good things...


NP: Ah Julian challenged.

JC: I thought it would be an act of kindness! Hesitation!

NP: He didn't actually hesitate Julian. He was talking rubbish, I know, but er I don't think you can have him for that. Do you think he was deviating from the worst...

JC: That as well, obviously!

NP: I've got to be fair within the rules of Just A Minute, I don't think he was deviating. Utterly boring! But still he keeps the subject and there are 20 seconds, Tony, starting now.

TH: And then a glove puppet appeared. My goodness, what's that doing here? Now you can't say that's boring Nicholas, can you?


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: Boring! Hesitation.

NP: Hesitation and deviation, right now Paul, you have the subject at last, 12 seconds, the worst hotel I ever stayed in starting now.

PM: The worst hotel I ever stayed in, without a doubt, was on the night...


NP: Clement challenged.

CF: Deviation, oh, hesitation.

NP: No, he's never gone so quick, he went so fast I could hardly understand what he said.

CF: That's right. Yeah, mmm!

PM: I...

CF: I couldn't hear it!

PM: Well I don't normally play this game when we're having a barbecue! The chops are done!

NP: Oh you're, you're a breath of fresh air Paul. Another point to you, 10 seconds, the worst hotel I ever stayed in starting now.

PM: Tahiti, what a terrible place! It was overrun by giant cats, and when I say they were big, they were enormous...


NP: Clement challenged.

CF: Repetition of they were, they were.

NP: I'm afraid that's true, yes. So Clement you've got in with one second to go on the worst hotel I ever stayed in starting now.

CF: The Extra...


NP: So um what is the situation at the end of that round? Well Clement Freud speaking as the whistle went, has moved forward. He's just in fourth place, he's just behind Julian Clary, who is a little way behind Paul Merton, who is one point only behind Tony Hawks. As we move into the final round, so it's still anybody's game. Someone could come from the fourth position to the lead. As they go rapidly forward, Julian Clary it could be you, because you begin the next round and the subject is Lily Bolero. That's a bit of a challenge, isn't it, you know. But I'll throw it at you, do your best, Lily Bolero, 60 seconds starting now.

JC: Lily Bolero was a drag act from Glasgow, famous on the whole for singing songs like "get the meatballs out, mother, we're coming to a fork in the road". Another one of hers, a particular favourite was "she sits amongst the cabbages and peas". You may not remember them but I certainly do. In fact in the past I've incorporated some of Lily Bolero's numbers into my act. Do you remember, I may not...


NP: Clement Freud challenged.

CF: Repetition of remember.

NP: Yes, you did remember before. I know its a pity because you did enjoy it, but we're playing Just A Minute at the moment, and er the laughs are important, but also the rules have to be applied. Clement you have a correct challenge, you have 32 seconds on Lily Bolero starting now.

CF: Mrs Bolero, who was Spanish and played the castanets, had a number of children, one of whom was called Lily. I met her in Madrid...


NP: Tony challenged.

TH: I thought there was a slight hesitation when he forgot where he met her.

NP: There was a slight hesitation...

PM: I don't want to worry anybody but I think we're heading out to sea! Which makes the subject of whether Clement mentioned madrid or not rather irrelevant to our future survival!

NP: Well I don't think so, I think we're all enjoying ourselves so much, we don't mind if we go out to sea with us, do you?


NP: No, let's all float out on a cloud of good humour. Yes! With Just A Minute like this, who wants anything else? We'll go to sea. Tony you had a correct challenge, you've got Lily Bolero and you've got 21 seconds starting now.

TH: My father was lucky enough to meet Lily Bolero in downtown Madrid. And what an evening it was! He was most impressed by her castanets which she would swing around in quite a cavalier manner, so he told me. But that's another story and one I won't go into now. She had a brief period as a wrecker in Cornwall, not long before she made her...


NP: Well Tony Hawks brought that round to a close with a flourish. You might be interested to know that the next subject that was coming up, I've got down here, is "in hot water". I think very soon we're all here going to be in cold water. So before that happens, let me give you the final score. Clement Freud who often comes out on top finished just in fourth place. But only one point behind Julian Clary. And he was three or four points behind Paul Merton. But three points ahead of him with that magnificent total of 18 points was Tony Hawks. So this week we say Tony, you are our winner! So it only remains for me to say thank you to our four fine, funny and humorous and clever players of the game, Paul Merton, Julian Clary, Tony Hawks and Clement Freud. I thank Claire Bartlett for helping with the score and blowing her whistle. We're grateful to our producer, Claire Jones. And also we are indebted to Ian Messiter who thought of this game. And we are deeply indebted to this lovely Cornish audience here in Fowey! From our fine panel, and from me Nicholas Parsons, thank you for tuning in, be with us next time we play Just A Minute!