NOTE: Steve Frost's last appearance.

NICHOLAS PARSONS: Welcome to Just A Minute!


NP: Thank you! Thank you! Thank you! Hello, my name is Nicholas Parsons. And as the Minute Waltz fades away once more it is my huge pleasure to welcome our many listeners not only in this country but throughout the world. But also to welcome to the show four distinctive and talented players of the game. And they're going to try and show their fun and sense of humour, their verbal dexterity, their humorous ingenuity as they speak on the subject I will give them, and try and do that without hesitation, repetition or deviation. And those four, sitting on my right are Paul Merton and Clement Freud. And sitting on my left, it is Victor Spinetti and Steve Frost. Will you please welcome all four of them! And sitting beside me is Janet Staplehurst, who is going to help me keep the score, and she will blow her whistle when the 60 seconds are up. And this particular edition of Just A Minute is coming from the magnificent Grand Theatre in the heart of that magnificent city of Swansea. And we have a lovely excited vociferous Welsh audience in front of us who are going to cheer us on our way. As we begin the show this week with Clement Freud. Clement, the best thing about Wales is the subject. Will you talk on it, 60 seconds, starting now.

CLEMENT FREUD: I suppose different people about differing ideas about Wales. And For me the best thing about Wales is Penwyndrwdrth. It is almost impossible to pronounce and far harder to spell than Wrylcolman Bay, Abergavenny.


NP: Paul challenged.

PAUL MERTON: There was a hesitation there.

NP: There was yes, he ran out of place names.

CF: Yes.

NP: And 39 seconds, Paul you get a point for a correct challenge, you take over the subject and 39 seconds to tell us something about the best thing about Wales starting now.

PM: It's the way everyone in Swansea loves everybody in Cardiff!


NP: Clement you challenged, yes everybody. You pressed your buzzer first so you got in first...

PM: Hang on, no, no, I said everyone and everybody.


NP: You did, and Clement was a bit too sharp there. So um...

PM: Everyone in Swansea loves everybody in Cardiff.


NP: Well done, well done. He's played the game before.

PM: Yes.

NP: An incorrect challenge, everyone and everybody, 35 seconds, still with you Paul, the best thing about Wales starting now.

PM: My first professional appearance was here in Swansea's wonderful beautiful city...


NP: Clement challenged.

CF: I don't think it was a city when you were here! When did Swansea become a city?


NP: There you are, '67.

PM: Sixty-nine they're saying.

NP: And you, you weren't old enough to be here then, were you?

PM: No, not really.

NP: Right. So another incorrect challenge, so you have another point for that Paul, 29 seconds, the best thing about Wales starting now.

PM: Was the limitless supply of beer I found when I first appeared here. Because no matter when you went into the pub, people would greet you with open arms and say "come in and enjoy the finest pint of ale brewed this side of the High Street". And you would sit down and it was beautiful, the chat, the talk, the land of song. People would come towards you speaking sometimes a strange tongue or dialect that you didn't at first understand. But then the warmth of the occasion would enthuse you and you'd be taken out in the middle of Vine Street on a Saturday night and...


VICTOR SPINETTI: I could listen to him for hours!

NP: Paul Merton displaying his talent and showing what an expert at this game is. Going with style and eclan right until the whistle went for which he gets an extra point. And at the end of that round he's the only one to have any points at all. And Victor Spinetti will you take this round. The subject is jams, will you tell us something about jams in this game starting now.

VS: Jams, well, traffic jams are the things that I would really like to talk about. Because coming down here today even, I was stuck in a traffic jam on the M4. But the most glamorous description of ever of er a traffic jam...


VS: Can I say it again? I don't know whether I can say it again.

NP: You can say jams again, that's the subject on the card.

VS: Oh I can't say traffic jams? Oh well there you are.

NP: No no that's right. I should explain to our listeners, this is only the second time that Victor has played the game so...

VS: And the last!

NP: No no, not the last certainly.

VS: Oh it's a nice story too! Never mind!

NP: You'll get a chance later. Correct challenge, let's hear what it was Paul?

PM: Sorry repetition of traffic.

NP: Yes right Paul.

VS: Of course you're right.

NP: Forty-six seconds, jams is with you Paul starting now.

PM: I remember reading a sentence that sent me into paroxysms of laughter. It is around about this time every year that the housewife's heart turns to jam! I was about 10 years old when I found this particular...


NP: Steve challenged.

SF: Ah repetition of about. We had two abouts, about this...

NP: About this time, and they turned, turned to jam. Well listened Steve, you have a point, you have 35 seconds, tell us something about jams starting now.

SF: Raspberry seedless is the one that I prefer so that it doesn't get stuck under your teeth. There's nothing worse than having to spit out those little...


NP: Clement, Paul challenged.

PM: Being beheaded! It's much worse than having to spit out... He said there's nothing worse than having seeds of jam.

SF: Ah well...

PM: I've tried both...

SF: ... I was going to say there's nothing worse than spitting out bits of seeds underneath, apart from being beheaded! But if you're going to come in with your willy-nilly ways...

NP: No Steve, I'll tell you what I'm going to do, I'll give you the benefit of the doubt because you were using the phrase colloquially. People, people often say "there's nothing worse than..."

PM: You're saying there's nothing worse in life...

NP: No...

PM: ... than not being able to spit out seeds.

NP: No I never said that...

PM: No, he's right! Now you think about it, he's right! He's right, he is right!

NP: I never said that!

PM: Excellent chairman!

SF: Yes!

PM: Best one we've got!

NP: I just, I just said, I just say you do use that phrase colloquially sometimes and we all knew what you meant. So I will give you the benefit of the doubt, though logically you're correct Paul.

PM: Yes.

NP: But Steve's got it this time, 26 seconds still with you on jams starting now.

SF: I made some gooseberry jam last year and I've still got it in a jar on my kitchen self...


NP: What'd you say?

PM: Well deviation, he said kitchen self!

SF: Yeah!

NP: Yes that's right yes.

SF: It's from Ikea, it's got a silent H!


NP: Give Steve a bonus point because they enjoyed his struggle to get out of it, got a good laugh and reaction. Paul got a point for a correct challenge, he has jams, 19 seconds starting now.

PM: One solution perhaps to ease the traffic on our roads I read in the paper this morning. They're going to start charging people by the mile, a special tax. There'll be satellite dishes installed up in the air, and there'll be little chips inside our motors. And a signal will be sent from one to the other and it will be able to tell the government just how many miles you travelled in your...


NP: Clement challenged.

CF: Miles.

NP: Miles, you did repeat miles.

PM: Did I?

NP: Yes you did yes. So Clement, you've, oh you've cleverly got in with half a second to go! It's not deliberate, he was just listening. Right, ha;f a second on jams starting now.

CF: Jams.


NP: So Clement Freud was then speaking as the whistle went, gained that extra point. And he's in third place, Paul's in the lead still, and Steve Frost follows him and then Clement and then Victor. And Steve it's your turn to begin, the subject here is surfies. Tell us something about surfies in this game starting now.

SF: If you like to hang 10, or shoot the tube, and (indistinguishable) barbecues on the beach all night, then you are a surfie. Sitting there, waxing your Malibu until you're told to move along...


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: Hesitation.

NP: There was a hesitation yes.

SF: Well you would have, if you'd seen the size of my Malibu!

NP: Paul, 49 seconds, surfies starting now.

PM: Surfies, I've got no idea what they are, so let's make something up...


NP: Clement challenged.

CF: Deviation.

NP: Why?

CF: Doesn't know what they are.

PM: Ah...

NP: Clement you've only been playing this game for about 37 years, and you know that even if you don't know what it is, you still have to keep going, and provided you don't hesitate, repeat something or deviate, you're all right. So he just said he didn't know what it was but he can still talk on the subject.

PM: Yeah.

NP: He may not know...

PM: I've got a lot to say!

NP: Yes! And you have another point and you have the subject still, surfies starting now.

PM: Well they're tiny scones aren't they, made in Cornwall. About the size of a pinhead, you get 15 on your plate and you look in vain for them. What you have to do is you stick them one on top of the other and eventually it becomes a substantial meal. While I was cycling around Devon in the late 1940s with Adolf Hitler and Cary Grant...


PM: Have you not read the autobiography?

NP: Yes Clement your challenge.

CF: Deviation.

NP: Deviation yes, but just give it to me, in case I may not agree always.

CF: Aha!

PM: I might get the benefit of the doubt!

NP: Yes! You think that Hitler and Cary Grant on bicycles in Devon was deviation?

PM: I'm not saying we didn't keep it quiet!

NP: All right Clement you have it, I was pulling your leg, 31 seconds, surfies starting now.

CF: I have no idea what a surfie is, unless it is strawberry jam with pips which get under your teeth and make you really unhappy. And then everyone will get together and say there's a surfie...


NP: Victor you challenged.

VS: Repetition.

NP: No, no, he was ah deviation.

VS: Deviation.

NP: Yes. Victor Spinetti you have the subject, you have 15 seconds, you have surfies starting now.

VS: I once spoke to a surfer and said "what is the magic of it?" And he said "standing on the crest of a wave for about a split second, you feel that you're actually holding the whole of eternity in your hands before you crash down into the sea. Time stands still..."


NP: Victor Spinetti was then speaking as the whistle went so he gained that extra point. He's just behind Steve Frost and Clement Freud who are equal, both trailing Paul Merton who's beginning. Paul it's your turn to begin, the subject Swansea Jack. Tell us something about Swansea Jack while we're in this fine city starting now.

PM: Swansea Jack was a very loyal dog. And when his owner died, he vowed he would stay by the graveside. Which is a pity because he was buried at sea! But never mind, every morning he would swim out there and get about 30 miles off the coast, dive about a hundred feet down, (makes barking noise) and then come back up again and have his lunch in the Mumbles. This is a thing that happened day in, every 24 hours. And tourists all over the world came to see Swansea Jack. He'd be there first in a little bed and breakfast, wake up, look out the window, see the sea was ready for him, jump out there, cresting the waves beautifully, his bark echoing across the Mumbles, down towards the Gower Peninsula. As the Japanese took photographs of him, saying "what an incredibly loyal beautiful dog this is, that he should go out there, somewhere in the wreck where that sad ship went down, all those years..."


NP: Um Clement challenged.

CF: He did say dog several times.

NP: He did say dog several times. So you have the subject Clement, 15 seconds, Swansea Jack starting now.

CF: Swansea Jack is what the Prince of Wales used to be called before other names were given to him, some considerable time after he had met Camilla Parker-Bowles. I'm...


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: Hesitation I'm afraid.

CF: I was speaking through the laughter.

NP: No, I must be fair Paul, I think he was speaking through the laughs. So you have another point Clement and two seconds on Swansea Jack starting now.

CF: When he met a genie in a sock...


NP: So we've really moved into the world of the surreal in that round. And Paul did magnificently for 45 seconds and got nothing out of it! And Clement...

SF: That's show biz!

NP: I know, show biz. Clement...

PM: I, I enjoyed it so I did actually get quite a lot out of it.

NP: I know because that's what it's about, this show.

PM: Absolutely.

NP: It's not about the points.

SF: Or the money!

NP: It's just about coming to Swansea.

SF: Yeah.

NP: To this lovely audience and enjoying ourselves. Exactly, we have fun. Right, Clement you're in second place, just behind Paul Merton, ahead of Victor Spinetti and Steve Frost. And it's also your turn to begin and the subject is oysters. Tell us something about oysters in Just A Minute starting now.

CF: Oysters are bivalve molesques which also...


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: You should hear what they say about you!

NP: Paul we loved the interruption so you get a bonus point for that. Clement was interrupted, he gets a point, he has 56 seconds on oysters starting now.

CF: Which are transsexual unlike me. And are a tremendous aphrodisiac. There is one kind of oyster which is so turn-on that unless you swallow it quickly...


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: Sorry, there is some kind of oyster which is so turn-on?

CF: Yes.

PM: That doesn't make sense, deviation.

NP: Well it made some sense to me, in the sense that, you know, if you take it it's a turn-on.

CF: He says...

NP: ... and he was turned on. He was using it colloquially.

PM: Okay.

NP: He has 44 seconds to continue on oysters starting now.

CF: That if you don't swallow it quickly you get a stiff neck!


CF: But I'm not sure that the story about oysters being tremendous turning-on animals food, isn't totally...


VS: Hesitation.

NP: Steve challenged.

CF: Very hard!

SF: Hesitation, he's got a lump in his throat!

NP: I think we should give Clement a point for keeping going through the laughter which he did create himself, so why shouldn't he keep going? I don't know. Anyway Steve you have a correct challenge which I believe, just confirm to me, what was it?

SF: Ah hesitation.

NP: Hesitation yes, tell us something about oysters and you have 28 seconds starting now.

SF: A little bit of tabasco sauce, lemon juice... cut up...


NP: Victor challenged.

VS: Hesitation.

NP: There was hesitation Victor. So you've got oysters, you haven't got oysters, you've got the subject of oysters...

PM: It's better than having crabs!

NP: I know! And there are, there are 24 seconds Victor, starting now.

VS: The most terrible experience of my life was eating a bad oyster. I was dreadfully ill for about at least three days. I couldn't move or go out or sleep or move. It was appalling...


NP: Steve challenged.

VS: What did I say?

SF: Move.

NP: Move.

SF: Move.

NP: You moved twice.

VS: Yeah.

NP: Steve got in first, oysters, 20, 14 seconds starting now.

SF: Chop up a shallot, no, that's a stupid thing to say...


SF: What a stupid thing! Make it easy for yourself, why don't you Steve? Chop up a shallot?

NP: Right so Paul?

PM: Well deviation, Steve said that's a stupid thing to say so he was off the subject of oysters.

NP: Right, and it was hesitation right. Eleven seconds, back with you on oysters Paul starting now.

PM: If you're a deep sea diver, you can find some satisfaction from pulling on all your equipment, going out very early in the morning and diving to where the oysters lie...


NP: Clement challenged.

CF: They don't lie that low!

PM: I didn't say I was a good swimmer!

NP: You could put it on, you could be like Paul...

PM: I'm not a good swimmer!

NP: ... and put it on, well you could put it on and still go to a bed which is quite close to the shore...

PM: Yes.

NP: ... not even out of your depth...

PM: That's right.

NP: So logically...

CF: We're not talking about bed, we're talking about oysters!

NP: Oysters come from oyster beds. And I assume that's where he was going. He might have been going...

SF: Well he just needs to...

NP: ... far out to see if he could find an oyster far out in the deep...

PM: Yes.

NP: ... because occasionally they are out there.

PM: They're crunchier out there!

NP: Yes so logically I don't think he was deviating within the rules of Just A Minute.

CF: Benefit of the doubt?

NP: So he has the benefit of the doubt. And so we've evened it out, two benefits, one each to each of them. Two seconds left with you Paul, oysters starting now.

PM: The pearl is a wonderful ornament...


NP: So Paul speaking as the whistle went gained that extra point. He's now in the lead, just ahead of Clement Freud and then Steve Frost and Victor Spinetti in that order. And you do see how I have to explain all my decisions. Otherwise they are so keen to get their points and succeed, but then keenness is part of the game.

CF: Nick can I just say one thing about...

NP: You can say as many things as you like.

CF: ...oysters and aphrodisiac.

NP: Yes.

CF: Not, not true, I, a few weeks ago, I had 12 oysters and only eight of them worked!

PM: I'd give it another year yet if I were you!

NP: I don't know, yes. Ah Victor it's your turn to begin and the subject is a Welsh one here, it's hwyl! Yes! So I'm sure you're more fitted than anyone else here to tell us something about hwyl and do it in 60 seconds if you can starting now.

VS: Hwyl is not what posh people think Castro sells! It is in fact a wonderful Welsh word which has many different meanings. For example hwyl is a sound of passion or fervour, the joy of a welsh preacher when he is denouncing sin. (goes into the sound of a passionate preacher speaking in Welsh)


VS: Is hwyl! And another kind of hwyl of course could be when you say poppl hwyl, which means good luck. And I tell you this, you need it on this show. And also Dylan Thomas, or some people call him Dylan, some people call hum Dullan. But when he spoke, he had that hywl in his voice. And death shall do no dominion. And I said once to Richard Burton, who was the perfect hwyl merchant, "you only speak on the left side of your vocal chords, why is that?" He said "because..."


NP: So Victor Spinetti started with the subject of hwyl, and displayed incredible hwyl.

VS: What he did say was, I said "you only speak on the left side of your vocal chords Richard". He said "that's right, I keep the right side for drinking!"

NP: And you er were speaking as the whistle went, get an extra point for that. And you get a bonus point because you weren't interrupted.

VS: Wow!

NP: Once or twice they were quite generous. But...

VS: Thank you very much.

NP: No it was lovely hearing from you. I mean you now you, you've gained your confidence. Will you ever come back again?

VS: Oh yes I'd love to now!

NP: Oh yes right, so we've got another player of the game. So Victor you are equal with Steve Frost in third place, and Paul Merton's just ahead of Clement Freud. And Paul it is your turn to begin and the subject is Sunday service. Sixty seconds as usual starting now.

PM: Travelling from Paddington today on the train to Swansea, I noticed it takes 45 minutes longer than it does on other days of the week. I don't know why this should be the case. So I spoke to the guard and he said "well you see, unfortunately on a Sunday we employ amateur drivers. So they really don't know the way. They have to spot, every 10 miles, a signpost which tells them exactly which way they're going. Before last week," he said, "we had a gentleman who was actually driving one of our trains here, and he took the passengers all the way to Kackakickle." Which is of course a tiny little coastal resort just further down along the beach. Past the Gower Peninsula. What a wonderful place that is. If you go there on a Sunday there is a hotel which gives you a special service. They give you cream teas, clotted stuff which is, I don't know...


NP: Victor challenged.

VS: Give you, give you.

NP: That's right, give you.

PM: Yes.

NP: Give you a special service, and give you cream teas. Well listened Victor, my goodness me, you're sharp at the game now. Seventeen seconds, Sunday service, with you Victor starting now.

VS: Sunday service was never ever missed. In Coombe where I come from, you went to the chapel on Sunday, and there was this wonderful service that everybody flocked into, and then came out singing as the doors opened into the sunshine, Guide Me O The Great Jehovah. That was a Sunday service...


NP: I must tell our listeners, the animation that Victor puts into it. He was almost out of his head, you could see the preacher there. And Victor all those efforts have got you two points, you're still, you're still in third place, but a strong third place, just ahead of Steve Frost, behind Clement Freud, and he's behind our leader Paul Merton. And Clement your turn to begin, the subject is annoying habits. Tell us something about annoying habits in this game starting now.

CF: I think cutting your toenails during dinner at the Savoy Grill is one of the most annoying habits I've come across. But there are many others, dealing with disgusting parts of the body being cleansed in public, using all sorts of unsavoury and unpleasant devices to make it all better. Ah...


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: Hesitation.

NP: Yes there was, he was running out of steam, wasn't he.

CF: No.

NP: Thirty-six seconds Paul with you on annoying habits starting now.

PM: I don't find it annoying to be cutting my toenails at dinner. I do it all the time, in fact when I went round to see Clement's beautiful apartment, he showed me all the hospitality in the world by giving me a toe clipping bowl which I could place the offending items into. He said "let me join you". And before we knew where we were, we both had our legs up on the mantelpiece, snipping away. And what a wonderful sight that would have been...


NP: Clement challenged.

CF: We've had wonderful once.

NP: You had wonderful.

PM: Did we?

NP: Yes.

CF: In the apartment.

NP: A wonderful thing yes, wonderful, so there we are, 17 seconds, annoying habits is back with you Clement starting now.

CF: I'm not very keen on people who leave the bathroom door open...


NP: Ah Steve challenged.

SF: People, we had people before. People who clip.

NP: people who clip their toenails...

PM: Oh yes.

NP: ... right at the beginning.

CF: Different people!

SF: (sings) Are the luckiest people...

NP: They may be different people, but you repeated the word people. So Steve you've got a correct challenge, annoying habits is with you starting now.

SF: Frodo, because what he did was, came into the little building...


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: Habits, not hobbits!

SF: Sorry!

NP: Nine seconds Paul on annoying habits starting now.

PM: Hecklers who go to Comedy Stores all around the world, and start heckling people, I find extremely annoying. There's a show I do with Mister Steve Frost over there...


NP: So let me give you the score as we move into the final round. Victor Spinetti and Steve Frost are equal in third place, they're a few points behind Clement Freud, and he's a number of points behind Paul Merton who is still in the lead. And Victor it's your turn to begin, so in this final round we're going to hear from you. And can you tell us something about this subject, what I take down to the beach. And you have 60 seconds starting now.

VS: My idea of hell is to be on a beach in the sun covered in suntan oil, soaking and burning up in that, I can't bear up! But if I had to go to the beach, if you were abroad of course you're all right. But in England you have to take, or in Wales, you have to take windbreaks...


NP: Clement challenged.

CF: Two have to takes.

NP: Two have to takes.

VS: Oh my God! Quite right!

NP: Quite right!

VS: I give up!

NP: But, but, but, but Victor, not, you can't go for 60 seconds in every round. So don't feel so disappointed...

VS: Okay, okay.

NP: You've contributed so much. Forty-two seconds for a correct challenge to Clement Freud, what I take down to the beach starting now.

CF: What I take down to the beach is sand because they very seldom have enough of it. We have shingle, stones, octopus droppings, all sorts of really nasty unpleasant things which are hard on your feet, cut your toes, and cause you...


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: How do you know it's octopus droppings?

CF: How do you know it's not?

NP: How do you know it's not?

PM: Well it's difficult for them to get up on to the beach, isn't it?

NP: For someone who goes into the realm of the surreal when you're talking about a subject, I don't think you can have Clement for doing something similar there.

PM: Well I just realised if there were eight in a line or something like... how would you go octopus droppings?

NP: Well as a, as a, you know as a...

PM: As an octopus myself, is that what you were going to say? Have you, have you ever had a dropping on the beach Nicholas?

NP: I've never seen an octopus dropping, no.

PM: No.

NP: I've never trodden in one either.

PM: No.

NP: But Clement Freud is a trained ah chef and restau, er restauranteur so he probably knows what he's talking about...

PM: He doesn't serve up octopus droppings, does he? Some weird delicacy? If you can't get the caviar, give 'em that!

NP: Right. When he was preparing the octopus...

PM: Tell 'em it's the same sort of stuff, but a bit crunchier!

NP: He probably saw what dropped out of them when he was cutting up the octopus for his, for his...

PM: Ah!

NP: Anyway it's a benefit of the doubt situation and you've had it before...

PM: Yes.

NP: Clement's got it this time, 22 seconds, what I take down to the beach Clement, starting now.

CF: Tastes rather like shepherd's pie. Sort of crumbly, crunchy, and quite pleasantly brown. Often found on the beach...


NP: Victor you challenged.

VS: Well deviation.

NP: Yes of course it was. The subject was what I take down to the beach, he was now talking about er octopus droppings.

VS: Exactly.

NP: And how crunchy they were when he cooked them.

VS: Exactly, nothing to do what he took down to the beach.

NP: That's right and so you have 12 seconds to tell us what I take down to the beach starting now.

VS: If you go down to the beach with the family, then you have to take lots of things because Gran would want a windbreak, and...


NP: Steve challenged.

SF: He said windbreak before when he first started.

NP: Yes you did have a windbreak before when you first started talking.

VS: Oh that was like ages ago!

NP: Oh I know it was, but it was still in this round, you see.

VS: Oh it's still in this round? Okay right, thank you!

NP: Not at all, no. So Steve's got in with four seconds to go on what I take down to the beach...

VS: Another sleepless night!

NP: What I take down to the beach, Steve starting now.

SF: What I take down to the beach is a great big bucket and very small spade...


NP: Well as I said earlier this was to be the last round, and let me give you the final score at the end of that situation. Victor Spinetti and Steve Frost with quite a lot of points, because a lot of points have been scored in this particular edition of Just A Minute, have finished equal in third place. Just four or five points behind Clement Freud. And he is four or five points behind Paul Merton, so in that sequence we say well done to all of them, but a special strong round to Paul Merton who came out at the top. Congratulations! So it only remains for me to say thank you to these four delightful players of the game, Paul Merton, Victor Spinetti, Steve Frost and Clement Freud. I also thank Janet Staplehurst, who has helped me with the score, she's blown her whistle with great style. And also we thank our producer-director, that is Claire Jones who comes from the Mumbles by the way. And also we are indebted to Ian Messiter who created this game. And we are deeply indebted to this lovely audience here in the Grand Theatre in Swansea who have enjoyed the show but cheered us magnificently and given us a show to remember. We hope you have had one as well, and tune in the next time we play Just A Minute! Until then from all of us good-bye!