NOTE: Claire Jones's 100th show as producer.

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 huge pleasure to welcome our many listeners, not only in this country but throughout the world. But also to welcome to the programme this week four talented and exciting personalities who are going to play Just A Minute. And seated on my right, we are pleased and delighted to welcome back that highly talented and original comedian Paul Merton. And sitting beside him, another original, a veteran of the show, and um and quite provocative player of the game, that is Clement Freud. And seated on my left, we have that delightful and charming comedienne and writer-author, that is Jenny Eclair. And beside her sits somebody who has done so many things, actor, writer, speaker and of course an ex-politician, that is Gyles Brandreth. Please welcome all four of them! I've just realised something. This is the first time we've had on the show two ex Members of Parliament! That's a first isn't it! Couldn't care less could you, let's carry on. And as usual I'm going to ask them to speak on a subject that I will give them and they will try and do that without hesitation, repetition or deviation. And sitting beside me is Janet Staplehurst, she is going to help me keep the score, she will blow a whistle when the 60 seconds have elapsed. And this particular edition of Just A Minute is coming from the Kentern Theatre in Henley, Henley-on-Thames, which is in that wonderful county of Oxfordshire. And sitting in front of us we have a keen enthusiastic audience who are dying for us to start. So we'll begin the show with Paul Merton. Paul the subject is making waves. Tell us something about that subject in this game starting now.

PAUL MERTON: I love Berkshire, I think it's a wonderful county! Now there's an example of making waves. If you say to an Oxfordshire audience that you particularly like somewhere else then they might get all uppity, because there's local rivalry involved. Making waves is also another thing you can do, you jump off the top deck of a swimming pool, not swimming pools have decks...


PM: Diving board!

NP: Clement you challenged.

CLEMENT FREUD: Repetition of swimming.

NP: That's right, a repetition of swimming pool.

PM: Oh was there?

NP: Yes there was, and Clement you have a correct challenge, you get a point for there and you have 43 seconds available to talk on making waves starting now.

CF: For those watching on radio I am now making waves. My left arm is swivelling around my head, whereas the right one is waving from left to right...


NP: Gyles you challenged.

GYLES BRANDRETH: Deviation and hesitation.

NP: Why? Which do you want anyway first?

GB: I want deviation, first of all. He wasn't waving anything anywhere and I was watching. I was watching on radio!

NP: Actually yes you can have it because that's a correct challenge. Because he said he was waving his arms and he did not actually wave his arms. I know the listeners couldn't see that but...

PM: Well I think he was!

CF: Under the table!

NP: You like to be provocative, don't you.

PM: The listeners at home don't know! Let's play with their minds!

NP: Well no, we're going to get them thinking on this one! But Gyles you are a correct challenge there so you take over the subject, you get a point of course. You have 30 seconds, making waves starting now.

GB: As Mrs Parker-Bowles, Camilla has been making waves for many years. But as the Duchess of Cornwall she is making waves...


NP: Oh Jenny you've challenged.

JENNY ECLAIR: As the, as the,

NP: You said two as thes there.

PM: That was where he shopped!

JE: But it's repetition of both.

NP: It's two words yes. We don't usually bother with very small words but two together Jenny. So a point to you, a correct challenge...


NP: I don't know whether that was for Jenny's preening before she starts, or whether it was just er reaction to the challenge, I don't know. Anyway there is 24 seconds available, making waves Jenny starting now.

JE: Women wake... made...


JE: (cries loudly) As a speech affliction, you shouldn't er, I can't even say it! You shouldn't penalise me for that!

GB: She wasn't waving her hands, she was waving her teeth! She'd taken them out!

NP: No you didn't really get started.

JE: It was a poor start.

NP: It was a poor start. Paul challenged yes.

PM: A very very bad start. That lets down women everywhere!

NP: Oh she had a hesitation. So Paul you have 22 seconds on making waves starting now.

PM: If you look out towards sea late at night, just off the coast of Morocco, you will see the most extraordinary thing. A sea monster rises out of the ocean and waves at you in the most extraordinary fashion. You could be in your hotel room, perhaps drinking a balcony on the cocktail... (laughs)


JE: Yes! Judgement day!

NP: Gyles you challenged.

GB: Well I think a little deviation.

NP: Why?

GB: The man's beginning to drink his furniture!

PM: No, balcony is a cocktail. And cocktail is slang for bar.

GB: It's certainly a stiff one, yes.

NP: Yes you can't exactly drink a balcony. I mean it could be a new form of cocktail but he didn't establish that. So we give you the benefit of the doubt Gyles and the subject, and you got in with two seconds...

PM: Oh!

NP: ... to go. You haven't won any friends with the correct challenge but you've got two seconds and a point and you start now.

GB: If you're royalty, the best way to make waves...


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: There was a hesitation there.

NP: No there wasn't!


NP: As they clapped, I will give you a point for that. You've still got the subject, another point, and one and a half seconds on making waves starting now.

GB: Take the right hand, raise it above you...


NP: By the way whoever is speaking when the whistle goes gains an extra point. It was Gyles Brandreth and with other ones in that round, he's taken a strong lead at the end of the first round. And Jenny...

JE: I'm pointless!

NP: No we'd like you to take the next round.

JE: Oh right! Thank you!

NP: And the subject is how to spot a cheat. No no no listen, take a deep breath, get poised and start now.

JE: (speaking slowly, drawing words out) I think that students should be forced to sit examinations in their vests and pants. Therefore any revision notes scribbled in biro on their limbs would be obvious to the juror's naked eye. That's a good idea. And I also reckon, if you're playing conkers, snip your opponents shiny brown orb in case he's dipped it in vinegar, thereby hardening the thing and creating an unfair advantage. Here's a way of spotting a love cheat. Has he lipstick on his collar, or reek of some...


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: Some of these words are getting awfully long! Coll- laaaar!

NP: You are dragging them out a bit.

PM: Is English your first language Jenny? You know...

JE: I just want to win!

NP: I know, she hasn't been... She hasn't played the game for a while and she's...

PM: Yes.

NP: Not only struggling a little bit, she's also...

PM: Emotionally disturbed!

NP: I think also...

JE: I'm very menopausal! Give me a break!

NP: I think she's finding another way to play the game...

PM: Yeah.

NP: Without actually cheating. But ah I mean I do think you should speed up a little Jenny. But go to your normal speed which would be more acceptable. But I therefore will give you the benefit of the doubt, so you have a point for a wrong challenge...

JE: Excellent!

NP: And you still have how to spot a cheat and you start, oh number of seconds, 19, starting now.

JE: I loathe cheats, although I will admit, the only reason why I passed my 11-plus is that I was sitting behind Melanie Sybil and I could see over her shoulder. And therefore check her multiple choice answers. But that's not cheating, it's just checking! I think...


NP: Paul...

JE: I did, I did, you're right Paul.

PM: Was it repetition of checking?

NP: No.

GB: I think check once and then checking the other time.

JE: Yes I said check and checking.

PM: Oh was it not? Okay.

NP: Check the first time and checking the second time.

PM: Oh right then, oh.

GB: I thought you were going to say hesitation.

JE: I did tell him.

GB: Oh I'm challenging.

NP: I'm sorry, it's too late now. He's challenged on that one and we can't have a secondary challenge. So Jenny unfortunately for a wrong challenge gets another point. It was hesitation but it's too late now. Four seconds to go Jenny on that subject starting now.

JE: Footballers are the most appalling cheats. They're forever falling over and creating the...


NP: So Jenny Eclair started with the subject and actually finished with it as well, and gained the extra point for speaking as the whistle went. So she's now equal with Gyles Brandreth in the lead. And Gyles it's now your turn to begin, the subject is China. Tell us something about that subject in this game starting now.

GB: My obsession with China began many years ago when I was at school. Not in the geography class, but during the English lesson. When I was introduced to the character who is the Chinese waiter in King Lear, summoned on with the line "come hither Ho!" It was then that I realised there has been a conspiracy in this country to introduce the things that are coming from China for many generations. Every Oriental restaurant in the land, I was told by my father, is in fact a Communist cell, where the kitchen staff are secret agents, and the messages are brought in in fortune cookies. The line, ying tong tiddle I po...


NP: Gyles you've just challenged yourself.

GB: Mmmmm?

NP: Whoever presses their buzzer first...

GB: I want to be known as an autodidact. I'm so sorry!

NP: So Gyles as you challenged yourself, I have to ask you what was your challenge?

GB: It was a false challenge. It was so unfair I think you should give me an extra point.

NP: If you have a legitimate challenge, I could...

GB: I have no legitimate challenge, it's just I'm so nervous, I'm so excited sitting next to Jenny, that it just sort of, I got carried away. I shouldn't be holding on to this thing.

NP: You give me an impossible situation because...

PM: Well who are you going to give the subject to, if you give it against Gyles?

NP: Ah that's what I was trying to work out.

PM: Yes! Give it to me!

NP: I can't ask all three of them to speak at once. Gyles you've got 28 seconds, no points scored in that situation, China is the subject starting now.

GB: In our family, we have an old collection of china. Some of it is meissen. We actually have a lot of money in our family...


NP: Clement you challenged.

CF: Meissen isn't China. It is German porcelain.

JE: Yes that's right.

NP: Your erudition not only gains you a point but a big round of applause and the subject and 23 seconds, Clement on China starting now.

CF: China is rhyming slang for I think monosodiumglutomate. But I can't remember, it could just be a friend. I have been to China on a number of occasions in a Parliamentary delegation in the 1970s. And this is really boring as are such deputations...


NP: Gyles challenged.

GB: I think there was a little hesitation.

NP: A little hesitation yes. So you've got the subject back. Who said no?

GB: Maybe, I was saying it was a little hesitation as a courtesy. But you're right, it was quite a considerable one.

NP: Three seconds on China, Gyles starting now.

GB: Your...


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: Quite a little hesitation there I thought.

NP: Another point to you Paul and China, two seconds starting now.

PM: I well remember the very first time...


NP: At the end of that round Paul Merton was speaking as the whistle went, gained that extra point and others in the round. He's now one point alongside Jenny Eclair, one point behind Gyles Brandreth who is in the lead. And Clement Freud it's your turn to begin, the subject is the perfect cup of tea. Tell us something about that subject in this game starting now.

CF: If the subject were the perfect cup for tea, I might mention meissen which is German porcelain and makes extremely good ware for the consumption of drinks and beverages of all kinds. But being the perfect cup of tea, I think one should talk about China, India and Sri Lanka which are tremendous sources for tea leaves of all kinds. In Conya there is a quite brilliant kind of tea...


NP: Jenny challenged.

JE: Two kinds. I know it's unkind of me but he was kind twice.

NP: Yes it was kind and kind of tea. Correct challenge, well listened Jenny.

CF: It's called repetition.

JE: Yes repetition.

CF: I repeated kind.

NP: That's right, yes you did.

JE: And I spotted it.

CF: So I get a point.

NP: Thirty seconds available Jenny, the perfect cup of tea starting now.

JE: The perfect cup of tea is brought to me in bed by a semi-naked Brad Pitt on a silver tray with an accompanying...


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: You'd never get Brad Pitt on a silver tray! Couldn't do it!

JE: I didn't know that splitting hairs was one of the things.

NP: No it isn't, but the humour...

PM: (laughs) Have you never had any achievement in your life Jenny, that you're so desperate to win this show?

NP: No but humour is important and valuable to the show. And Paul your interruption was delightful. The audience enjoyed it so we give you a bonus point for that. But Jenny was interrupted so she gets a point for the interruption. She keeps the subject, the perfect cup of tea, 22 seconds starting now.

JE: It depends on my mood. Some days I wake up and think, Earl Grey, weak and black as I enjoy my men. No sugar, slice of lemon if you can be bothered...


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: Well Brad Pitt's neither weak or black! Deviation!

NP: So...

PM: Basically she fancies anybody who brings her a cup of tea!

JE: Yes! Yes I do!

NP: So what is your challenge?

PM: Well it's deviation, she said she liked Brad Pitt...

NP: I will accept that. Because you established first your perfect person was Brad Pitt, and now it's gone to some other.

JE: Is a girl not allowed to change her mind?

NP: But in Just A Minute, no, in Just A Minute you have to justify the change and say that if Brad Pitt wasn't available, then you'd have gone for the other. Something like that.

JE: That was going to be my next sentence! As long as it's not Paul bringing me a cup of tea anyway, then I don't care!

GB: Oh!

NP: Oh! No we don't have enmity in this show. Paul we give you the benefit of the doubt, and you have 13 seconds, tell us something about the perfect cup starting now.

PM: I tried to bring Jenny the perfect cup of tea once but I couldn't get past Brad Pitt and all these weak black men, that were fighting their way upstairs! The perfect up of tea as far as I'm concerned is a bag of green tea. I love this particular...


NP: So Paul Merton speaking as the whistle went gained that extra point as well as others in the round. And now he's taken the lead just one ahead of Jenny who is one ahead of Gyles who is two ahead of Clement. That is the sequence as Paul you begin the next round. And the subject now is junk. Tell us something about junk in this game starting now.

PM: I suppose junk is outdoor clutter in the same way that the aforementioned stuff is indoor junk. I suppose it's one of those things...


PM: I said suppose twice.

NP: Jenny challenged.

JE: Two supposes.

NP: Yes you supposed too much.

PM: Yeah it wasn't very good was it.

NP: No.

PM: It was appalling. You'd think I'd know better after all these years, wouldn't you.

NP: Jenny you have 53 seconds on junk starting now.

JE: I keep a lot of junk in the lockup garage in Camberwell. The items include a sink, some baths, tiles, old magazines, a rusty racing bike, oh loads of...


PM: This is turning into The Generation Game! A list of objects! I don't believe you've got three baths ina lockup garage!

NP: Sorry to interrupt you but Gyles's light came on first.

PM: Oh did it? Oh sorry.

NP: So I have to give him the challenge.

GB: It was hesitation.

NP: No there was no hesitation.

GB: Oh wasn't there?

NP: No.

JE: Oh there was an...

GB: No, there was no hesitation from Jenny but there was a hesitation from you in realising that I was the person who buzzed and...

NP: All right Gyles, your quick wit gains you a bonus point. But Jenny was interrupted so she gets a point for that. She still has junk and there are 41 seconds Jenny starting now.

JE: Junk is the name of the novel written I believe by an author called Melvyn Burgess which won er an award for...


NP: Clement challenged.

CF: That was hesitation.

NP: Yes there was a hesitation.

JE: Yeah.

NP: On the word there.

JE: And a stutter and a mess.

NP: A stumble we interpret as hesitation. So Clement you have the subject of junk, you have 35 seconds starting now.

CF: Junk is the only word I can think of containing the letters J, U, N and K. But I do challenge anyone to think of...


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: Junks! That contains all of them.

NP: I think that's a very clever challenge.

PM: Yes so do I!

NP: Yes and so you've got the subject, another point of course, 25 seconds, junk starting now.

PM: On Paul McCartney's first solo album after the Beatles split up, there was a song called Junk. In fact there were two versions. There was another once called Singalong Junk, which had words to the aforementioned instrumental. And it was a very beautiful piece of music and Mister Macca showed that not only was he a great songwriter. But even though he had left behind the biggest group in the world, he could strike out on his own and his music wouldn't be junk. Oh no! He was a...


NP: So Paul, taking junk and going with panache kept going to the whistle, gained that extra point. And he's still in the lead, one ahead of Jenny, two ahead of Gyles, and three ahead of Clement. And Jenny we're back with you to start, the subject now is hypnotists. Hypnotists, 60 seconds starting now.

PM: Do you know what? I once had my breasts enlarged by a hypnotist for a show that Jonathan Ross presented on television. This is true, can't you see, they're miraculous!


NP: Paul challenged.

PM: Ah sort of deviation, miraculous was a bit funny!

NP: It was rather deviation from English as we understand it. I think she, the demonstration she was giving to the audience about her breasts was actually worthy of the stumble! Um but Paul you have a correct challenge, you have 52 seconds, hypnotists starting now.

PM: I too appeared on the Jonathan Ross show, and I was hypnotised into thinking I had magnificent breasts. And look at them, aren't they gorgeous! Don't you like them, ladies? Do you see the way they're sort of quite pert, aren't they, for somebody of my age! When I was walking through a park once, I met a hypnotists who looked me sorely in the eye and said I am going to make you think you are a duck. And he hypnotised me and within moments i was quacking all over the place. It was the most extraordinary exhibition I have ever seen in my life! One of the great...


NP: Gyles challenged.

GB: Deviation, you would not be able to see your own exhibition unless you had a mirror at the time.

PM: It was videoed! It was for a TV programme called That's My Duck. For celebrities that are hypnotised as ducks, don't you remember? Do you remember Nicholas? You were a, you were a mallard for six months, do you remember?

NP: I know, and we had that amazing affair because you were the duck. Right...

GB: Please!

PM: Well it wasn't that amazing, to be honest!

GB: When you said "I suppose a quick duck's out of the question"!

NP: Right yes! Oh!

CF: Did he put it on your bill?

NP: Gyles he didn't establish that he saw it on television later. And so correctly yours is a correct challenge, correctly, oh that's a bit of a tautology isn't it. You did have a correct challenge and you so have the subject, 27 seconds, hypnotists starting now.

GB: The only hypnotist I know personally is Uri Geller, the man who uses...


NP: Clement challenged.

CF: I know Uri Geller and he is not a hypnotist.

GB: Oh! Oh! But he has recently been telling us how he hypnotised Michael Jackson and indeed he has hypnotised me.

CF: He lies.

GB: Which is how I know I'm not guilty!

CF: He lies.

NP: If we, if we allow people who tell lies, to, all the lies to be actual facts, we'll never get anywhere in Just A Minute. Because I talked to Uri Geller once and he does claim to do hypnosis. So whether he claims he's a hypnotist doesn't matter. He does hypnosis and that's sufficient. So Gyles an incorrect challenge you have 23 seconds, hypnotists starting now.

GB: Curiously when I had a pain in my hip, I went to a hypnotist, thinking that maybe if he waved in front of me the magic watch...


NP: Clement challenged.

CF: Repetition of hypnotist.

NP: Hypnotist, oh yes.

GB: Isn't hypnotist the word on the card?

NP: No, hypnotists.

PM: Oh!

GB: Oh!

PM: Yes!

GB: As in junk and junks, hypnotist and tists.

NP: Oh that is quite different, he got in rather cleverly on that.

GB: Oh yes he did, I'm not...

NP: This is a plural...

GB: If I was a better hypnotist, he wouldn't have got in at all. I've been working quite hard.

NP: But Clement's played the game a lot, he spots these things quickly, and he's got in there with 17 seconds on hypnotists starting now.

CF: I think there's something hugely...


NP: Paul.

PM: Hesitation.

NP: Yes you've got hypnotists now and you have got 15 seconds starting now.

PM: I've been hypnotised to attack the person next to me whenever I hear a buzzer sound. So it would be in Clement's best interests not to buzz at any point...


NP: Clement challenged.

CF: Repetition of buzz.

PM: Buzz and buzzer.

NP: He said buzz and buzzer.

CF: I, I pressed my buzzer before he got E-R out!

NP: Oh! Clement that deserves a bonus point. Give him a bonus point for that but it was an incorrect challenge so Paul has another point, he has six seconds, hypnotists starting now.

PM: Paul McKenna is a world famous hypnotist who claims all sorts of things. You can go to him and say I want to be cured of smoking...


NP: At the end of the round Paul Merton has increased his lead. And Clement your turn to begin, the subject, going to the zoo. Tell us something about that in this game starting now.

CF: So seeking for further amusement
They paid and went into the zoo
Where there were lions and tigers and camels
And good ale and sandwiches too.
There was one great big lion called Wallace
Whose nose was all covered in scars.
He lay in a recumbent posture
With his nose alongside the bars.
Now Alby had heard about the great animals of the forest
That they were ferocious and wild
And seeing one lying so still there
It didn't seem right to the child.
So straight away the...


GB: I'd love to have the rest of the poem, so I'm only asking for the point and then I'd like to hear the rest of the poem. But lion has been repeated.

NP: Lion has been repeated.

CF: No.

PM: No, I don't think so actually.

GB: I love, I love the poem.

PM: We had lying, lions and lion.

NP: That's right and so it wasn't correct. We'd love to hear Stanley Holloway's famous monologue which you're doing.

GB: Never done so well!

NP: Never done so well.

GB: Nor with such native intelligence.

NP: (in Northern accent) Mind you it was much better when it had a north country accent, but it doesn't matter, it's maybe not up his street.

PM: Nicholas, Nicholas, can you do a north country accent?

NP: (in Northern accent) You are so wicked, I'll come over there and thump you if you're not careful! Cut that out! Right Clement you have an incorrect challenge, you have another point, you have 27 seconds, going to the zoo starting now.

CF: My nanny used to take me to the zoo because it cost three and sixpence. We had to stay there for the whole afternoon. I joined the Royal Zoological Society in order to take my children to the zoo where we stayed for half an hour, having visited a goldfish or possibly a sociable eagle. It was a far better...


NP: Jenny challenged.

JE: Well a goldfish in a zoo?

PM: Yeah.

JE: Deviation.

GB: No, no...

JE: Do they have goldfish?

GB: British Park Zoo.

JE: Are they fighting goldfish?

GB: No, it's the best goldfish collection in Europe.

JE: I didn't know, I'm sorry Clement.

NP: Don't apologise.

JE: I must go and see the goldfish in the zoo, how exciting!

NP: It was a good attempt. Yes we've publicised the fact, I'm sure they'll be queuing up now to see the goldfish in the zoo. So Clement, another incorrect challenge, five seconds, going to the zoo starting now.

CF: It was often difficult to get into that place because the many out of work actors...


NP: Right so Clement Freud with a number of points in that round including one for speaking as the whistle went has increased his position, leapt forward. And we're moving into the final round. Anyway let us give you the situation as we move into the final round. Jenny Eclair, who did so well to start with, her flourish is waning a little. But she's still there and she's got a lot of points and we've heard from her a lot. But she's only just in fourth place, she's just behind Gyles Brandreth who is two points behind Clement Freud and he is one point behind Paul Merton in the lead. And Paul you begin this last round, the subject is the boomerang. So tell us something about the boomerang starting now.

PM: As the old school playground joke goes, what do you call a boomerang that doesn't come back? A stick! But a boomerang that you throw successfully that returns to you is a wonderful thing. Invented by the Aborigines in Australia of course, it's not often thought of as a hunting weapon but it has been used as such. It's more of a kind of, oh I don't know what I'm talking about.


NP: Gyles has challenged.

PM: But thank you for applauding that fact!

GB: He didn't know what he was talking about so hesitation.

NP: Hesitation or deviation, whichever you want, 43 seconds, Gyles tell us something about the boomerang starting now.

GB: The late great Derek Nimmo introduced me to the actress Miss Evelyn Lay, known as Boo, who was famous for her meringues. The Boo meringue that she served in her dressing room on matinee days was something to be tasted and revelled in. It was light and fluffy, as was she. And I have to say when she took me over to see her friend, Dame Barbara Cartland, we had a different kind of confection and it wasn't as tasteful though it had an Australian tang to it. Rolf Harris, who is shortly going to be doing a portrait of Her Majesty the Queen, takes with him everywhere he goes the boomerang that comes from his native Australia. What a remarkable person he is, being able to turn this weapon of war into an instrument that has given pleasure to so many. Of course I use the language loosely, he's my...


NP: So Gyles Brandreth cleverly kept going just till the whistle but gained the extra point because he spoke as the whistle went. And I'll give you the final situation. Jenny Eclair finished in a very strong fourth position. No, no, it's the contribution that it's about. The applause from the audience endorsed what you contributed Jenny. And it's very interesting because then just in second place, equal, were Gyles Brandreth and Clement Freud. And they were one point behind Paul Merton, so Paul you're the winner this week! It only remains for me to say thank you to these four fine players of the game, Paul Merton, Jenny Eclair, Gyles Brandreth and Clement Freud. I also thank Janet Staplehurst, who has helped me with the score, blown her whistle so well. We are grateful to our producer, who is Claire Jones. And we are indebted to Ian Messiter who created this amazing game. And we are very indebted to this lovely audience here at the Kentern Theatre in Henley-on-Thames. So from them, and from me Nicholas Parsons and our panel, good-bye, tune in the next time we play Just A Minute!