WELCOME TO JUST A MINUTE!
starring KENNETH WILLIAMS, CLEMENT FREUD, PETER JONES and PATRICK MOORE, chaired by NICHOLAS PARSONS (Radio, 20 January 1976)
ANNOUNCER: We present Kenneth Williams, Clement Freud, Peter Jones and Patrick Moore 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, hello and welcome to Just A Minute. And as you just heard we welcome back this week Patrick Moore after some absence and his success on his first visit to play the game in our guest chair with out three regular competitors. And once again I will ask them if they can speak for just a minute on some subject I will give them without hesitation, without repetition and without deviating from the subject. And the first subject that Ian Messiter has thought on is one obviously especially for Patrick. It's a long one, it's called the fourth Earl Ross to say nothing of his 42 inch reflector. Can you tell us something about that Patrick in 60 seconds starting now.
PATRICK MOORE: Part of the subject is to say nothing about the fourth Earl Ross's 42 inch reflector and I think it's just as well for the simple reason that he did not actually have a 42 inch reflector. He never attempted to make anything of the kind. He was of course an astronomer. He lived in Ireland. His mother was a most remarkable woman, a pioneer in photography. And when the Earl decided to make a hobby of looking at the sky he elected to build a major instrument so to do. But of course he was above all a...
NP: Ah, Clement Freud challenged.
CLEMENT FREUD: Repetition of of course.
NP: You have a correct challenge and you have 32 seconds to talk about the fourth Earl Ross to say nothing of his 42 inch reflector starting now.
CF: I'm not going to say anything about his 42 inch reflector but I will talk about the Earl Ross because as a title it has the extreme rarity of being able to be passed on, on the female side as well as that of the male. And the Countess Ross who in fact does a great deal of good opening exhibitions, picture shows and in fact being a patroness...
NP: Ah, Peter Jones.
PETER JONES: Repetition of in fact.
PJ: He said in fact earlier on.
NP: That is perfectly correct Peter, you now have four seconds, no, three and a half, to talk about the Fourth Earl Ross to say nothing of his 42 inch reflector... In fact you could just spell it out in three and a half seconds if you wanted to, starting now.
PJ: He was a dab hand with a telescope and he used to wheel this instrument...
NP: As this reflector puzzles me Patrick, can you tell us, did he invent a reflector?
PM: No, the third Earl Ross made a giant 72 inch reflector, the largest in the world. He completed it in 1845, it remained the largest until 196.... 1917.
NP: And we move on to the next subject... oh yes, at the end of that round, let me tell you that whoever is speaking when the whistle goes gets an extra point and it was Peter Jones. He has 2. Clement Freud has 1. And it's Kenneth Williams' turn to begin. Kenneth, the subject is, when its my go. Its your go now and there is just a minute starting now.
KENNETH WILLIAMS: When it is my go, I should be allowed to get under way properly and not be interfered with by pygmy like minutae and rubbish from other people! I should be given the opportunity to expatiate upon the chivalry and generosity of middle age because youth is always unkind and shouts "Get out, you old gasbag!" and rudeness! Whereas I, used to the cloistered world or the groves of academe as they are sometimes called should proceed evenly, calmly through life on some vast panopoly. Silken gowns and beauty, noise. No ugly chants. No discord shall interrupt! Oh, I realise I'm being set up rotten! They've all just decided...
KW: They just sat there with no intention of pressing their buttons!
NP: We were absolutely mesmerised! And the audience were enthralled!
KW: I could see what they were doing: give him enough rope and he'll hang himself!
NP: Well you never hung yourself with hesitation, repetition or deviation. You kept going on the subject for the full 60 seconds so you get one point for speaking when the whistle went and also a bonus...
KW: I'm in the lead! I'm in the lead!
NP: But so is Peter Jones.
NP: You have two points for keeping going till the whistle. Peter, it's your turn to begin. The subject is what makes me laugh. Will you tell us something about that in Just A Minute starting now.
PJ: Well, things like "Have you ever had this before?" "Yes, doctor." "Well, you've got it again." That's the kind of thing that amuses me. And "Do you serve crabs here?" "Sit down, we serve anybody."
NP: Clement Freud has challenged.
CF: Repetition of serve.
NP: Oh, what a pity!
KW: That's mean. I thought you were lovely!
NP: That's rotten, isn't it. But still it's a correct challenge, so Clement Freud gets the subject and there are 47 seconds on what makes me laugh Clement, starting now.
CF: A man who was walking down a street and saw an alarm clock in a shop window and went in and finally said to the man who appeared...
PM: Repetition of man.
NP: Yes, a man walked down the street and another man appeared. And Patrick...
CF: It was a different man!
NP: Patrick we never got his story, what made him laugh, but we might hear what makes you laugh because there are 38 seconds left starting now.
PM: What makes me laugh? Well, of course, the amazing witticisms of the members of the panel invariably do so. But I found there is one particular feature of all stories that make me laugh. And that is, they must be funny! Now this may sound a truism , and of course it is. But if a story...
NP: Clement Freud.
CF: Repetition of of course.
NP: Yes. I'm afraid you'll have to watch that Patrick especially at the speed at which you go. Um, what makes me laugh, Clement. There are 24 seconds left starting now.
CF: "Do you do canine vasectomies?" And the chap in the emporium said "yes, I do". To which this customer replied "Why on earth do you have a timepiece where I saw it from the pavement?" and he said "what else would you expect me to have there?" has always made me laugh a lot, because I thought it was one of the funniest stories which presumably did nothing at all for the audience. Then we only have...
NP: Well, maybe in a different house, it would go like a bomb, Clement. You were speaking when the whistle went, you gained an extra point and so you just increased your lead now. And will you begin the next round. The subject is phonophobia. Will you tell us something about that in Just A Minute starting now.
CF: Phonophobia is presumably the fear of loud noises, but could equally be fright of amplification...
NP: Ah, Patrick Moore.
PM: Hesitation, I think.
NP: No, I don't think so. In comparison with your speed, yes, but in comparison with his speed, no. Clement, 52 seconds left, phonophobia, starting now.
CF: For instance, if Patrick Moore bellowed into one's ear, a phonophobic would go straight to the nearest hospital and ask for internment, or at least temporary admission, which is the sort of thing that this disease has. In latter day times, phonophobia is more...
NP: Er, Peter Jones.
PJ: It's not a disease.
NP: No, no, it's a phobia, not a disease.I quite agree, good challenge. 33 seconds, Peter, on phonophobia starting now.
PJ: I don't think Patrick Moore would go out and bellow in somebody's ear. He's got much too good manners for that. He's probably...
NP: Um, Kenneth Williams has challenged.
KW: Deviation. The subject is phonophobia, not what you imagine Patrick is going to go about doing.
NP: Yes, I consider that deviation. He didn't start on the subject. He started on Patrick Moore... not literally you understand! There are 26 and a half seconds with you Kenneth, phonophobia, starting now.
KW: No-one would suffer from this in my knowledge, unless they walked around with a load of stuff in their earholes, you know wax and cotton wool. Then of course the chances of you getting struck by it are minimised immediately. Or the dead zone, they're very useful. A lot of people tell me they're used in laboratories. They block out all outside noise, you don't hear a thing! It's like another world! Cotton wool's the rise, material eyes...
NP: Patrick Moore.
PM: Deviation, I think he's talking in Venutian!
NP: That's a good attempt, Patrick, we'll give you a bonus for a good challenge, and Kenneth one for an incorrect challenge. Three seconds left, Kenneth, phonophobia starting now.
KW: A bloke rushed into the pub and said "Mine's a light" and the barmaid poured a bucket of cold water all over him. And I think thats a very funny thing!
NP: Kenneth Williams was then speaking when the whistle went. He gained that extra point and he's now equal in the lead with Clement Freud. Both have 5 points apiece. Patrick, will you please start the next round. The subject: beetlejuice. Sixty seconds starting now.
PM: Beetlejuice! Now this could be one of several things. It could in fact...
NP: Ah, Kenneth Williams.
KW: He's deliberately impersonating Clement Freud!
NP: But what is your challenge?
KW: Well, it's not one really, is it?
NP: So all you did is interrupt his flow a thing you get so cross about. He gets a point for that, he continues on beetlejuice with 53 seconds left starting now.
PM: It might very well be a problem of emphymology and this has been suggested time again in the past and no doubt...
NP: Clement Freud.
CF: He's deliberately not imitating Clement Freud now! Which is deviation!
NP: I don't think that he was deliberately not because he's not an impersonator.
CF: No, you can say that again!
NP: One of the most individual personalities we know. Ah, patrick, you have 44 seconds on beetlejuice starting now.
PM: Beetlejuice might easily be juice coming out of a beetle. And if this is indeed so, undoubtedly there will be all sorts of repersuccions in scientific instruments. On the other hand, it could also be a star! And there is a body in the sky, and where else could it be, which is very often called beetlejuice and it is in fact in the constellation called Orion. I'm being very careful not to repeat myself as I have done in the past for this is a very serious topic indeed. This particular world is huge. It is truly vast! Just imagine what would happen if you got into a jet or for that matter some other kind of aircraft and there are plenty around these days, and you attempted to make a complete circumnavigation of this sphere? How long would it take?
NP: Kenneth Williams, back with you. Percy Harrison Fawcett. That's who Ian Messiter has asled you to talk about in Just A Minute starting now.
KW: From what I know he was a colonel who disappeared near the Zingel River. And he also took with him a son and friend, Rimmel I think it was called. A book by Cummings, The Fate of Colonel Fawcett, does deal with this er...
NP: Patrick Moore.
NP: A hesitation, yes. It was a full stop! Patrick, 44 seconds are left for you to tell us something about Percy Harrison Fawcett starting now.
PM: Percy Harrison Fawcett, otherwise Colonel, was not a man I personally knew. I have obviously heard of him and I have the greatest admiration for him. Because as we've heard many times and often of him, he disappeared up the Zingel River, and if you ask me where that is, I'm afraid to say that without consulting my geographical map, and that is the only chart I would care to look at under these conditions, I really cannot tell you. Percy Harrison Fawcett, as I have said before...
NP: Ah, Clement Freud.
NP: Of what.
CF: He said it before.
PM: I'm allowed surely to repeat the subject name.
NP: Yes, you did, but you actually said as I've said before before.
PM: I've said before before.
PM: I understand.
NP: 13 seconds for Percy Harrison Fawcett with you Clement starting now.
CF: Percy Harrison Fawcett as I haven't said as yet had a...
NP: Patrick Moore.
PM: If you haven't said it before what is the point of saying it now?
NP: So what is your challenge?
NP: Deviation? Incorrect. Clement you have a point. You have 7 seconds on Percy Harrison Fawcett starting now.
CF: He was an arny officer between the rank of major and full colonel and he was lost on the Zingel river which is in South America.
CF: The audience will never know about him now, will they?
NP: Well, I'll tell them, it was in 1925 for those who are interested. Anyway, Patrick Moore, your turn to begin. The subject is optics. That's what Ian Messiter has thought of. You have 60 seconds to talk about it, Patrick, starting now.
PM: Optics are the study of the eyes, and this is a most important branch of science, because in the modern world of technology, what is more important...
NP: Ah, Patrick Moore.
PM: I just er, I repeated important, I challenged myself.
NP: That's... He can obviously think as quickly as he can speak! It's a correct challenge, Patrick, so you get a point for that! And you keep the subject as well, and you have 51 seconds on optics starting now.
PM: Telescopes. Microscopes, many other kinds of instruments, all of these are branches of optics. And when you consider them individually or collectively, then you realise how much they do for common people such as ourselves and others who inhabit...
NP: Ah, Kenneth Williams.
KW: Deviation! Common people such as ourselves? He looked right at me!
NP: Because you're the commonest of them all! So what is your challenge?
KW: Deviation, I'm not common!
NP: Well.... shall I put it to the audience? Now if you think that Kenneth is common, will you please cheer for him? But if you think Patrick is correct, that we're all common, will you boo for Patrick? And all do it together now.
CHEERS AND BOOS.
NP: The boos have it, so we're all common, Patrick. Optics still with you and there are 36 seconds left starting now.
PM: Optics began centuries ago in the Greek period. The first start was made by a man called Aristofeles. He was a great writer. He was also a great purveyor...
NP: Clement Freud.
CF: Repetition of great.
NP: Yes. Two greats. Optics is with you Clement, and there are 25 seconds left starting now.
CF: When I did optics at school, one of the most extraordinary manifestations was the prism, which was ever and on produced by the master in charge of the subject, and rays of lights were thrown at it, and reflected or refracted out...
NP: Ah, Patrick Moore.
PM: Deviation, which one was it, relected or refracted?
PM: Do you mean both?
NP: He said reflected or refracted!
PM: If he inferred them at the same time, then he's wrong. If he did not, then he's right.
NP: He did not infer them at the same time, so I said...
PM: Then he's right!
NP: Then he's right! Thank you very much Patrick.
PJ: Now you see, I object because Patrick Moore is making use of inside information!
NP: Well, he said it in here!
PJ: He did?
PJ: Well, I'm pleased to hear it!
NP: Clement Freud has got a point, there are 2 seconds for you to continue on optics starting now.
CF: There's a time in the affairs of man which...
NP: Clement Freud has increased his lead at the end of that round, and Kenneth Williams, your turn to begin. The subject: murder. You've mentioned that quite a few times in Just A Minute. Will you tell us something about it now in 60 seconds, starting now.
KW: Little did she know as she trod the gravel path that fateful night in 1812 that she was to be the object of derision in the entire neighbourhood, when it appeared in the local press that she'd taken the chemical off the flypaper, dissolved it in the bathwater, and put it in his soup. When she was arrested the following day, they desperately tried in all the ways they knew... a bluebottle is buzzing around me and ruining my concentration... but they could not get her off. So the moment arrived when the Judge, placing the black cap upon his head, pronounced the appalling words! Was there to be an 11th hour reprieve?
KW: Was there a veritable Veonardo thrusting...
KW: ...saying "No! Save the poor thing!" Never!
NP: Kenneth, I'm sorry! Before the judge pronounced sentence, Clement Freud challenged!
CF: Those were not appalling words! But perhaps they got more appalling!
NP: But if you were in the dock, in the dock, they would be appalling words!
CF: Was that what he just said?
NP: Kenneth, you have 2 seconds to continue on murder starting now.
KW: It's only committed when people are not in their right mind!
NP: So Kenneth worked very hard, but he only got two points in that round but he's equal in second place with Patrick Moore, still behind Clement Freud. And it's Peter Jones' turn to begin. The subject: detection. Following murder, detection. Just a minute to talk about it starting now.
PJ: A fascinating subject and one that has gripped the imagination of some of the best thriller writers over the past two centuries. For instance, I can recall a fascinating er ..
NP: Patrick Moore.
PM: Repetition, he said er. I don't mean repetition, I mean hesitation.
PJ: What does he mean?
PM: I mean hesitation.
PJ: Would you like to go outside for a few minutes to think it over? Calm yourself!
NP: Patrick, you have the correct challenge, you have 47 seconds to talk about detection, starting now.
PM: Detection is a very old science, and I think we can call it that. It goes back for centuries. It started I think in the 14th decade and this goes back now a very long way indeed. Detectives are I feel some of the most valuable people whom we encounter in our modern life. They are of various kinds. Some of them are small ratlike people with faces like pigs who crawl around doing their best to uncover any trace of dirt, and er...
NP: Clement Freud has challenged.
NP: Clement Freud, you have... Clement has a correct challenge and you have 18 seconds left for detection starting now.
CF: Some of my favourite heroes of detection are those depicted by Agatha Christie and Dorothy L. Sayers. Hercule Poirot, which means...
NP: And what is the score now? Oh well, Clement has increased his lead at the end of that round and it's his turn to begin the next round. The subject is Diamond Lill. Would you talk about her for just a minute, sorry, in Just A Minute, starting now.
CF: Diamond Lill, in fact, was a character who appeared in the poems of Robert service, a 19th century poet who wrote predominantly about the new frozen north beginning to thaw, about the 49th parallel where the men who went to the Yukon, to make their fortune...
NP: Peter Jones has challenged.
PJ: He didn't write about Diamond Lill!
KW: Yes, he's mixed him up with Eskimo Nell, that's what he's done!
NP: Diamond Lill was a character...
CF: Took you a long time, didn't it!
NP: It took you a long time to realise that Diamond Lill was a charcter that Mae West immortalised! And Robert Service...
KW: I kept looking at you and asking you if it was true or not, but you wouldn't answer!
NP: I thought you said "Are you Diamond Lill?"
CF: He never calls you Lill does he?
NP: No, but I call him Nell! Right, let's get back to Just A Minute! Diamond Lill! It's a correct challenge from Peter Jones and he now has 18 seconds to talk about her starting now.
PJ: With those enormous hats and the pinched in waist and the pushed up bust and the diamonds and other jewellery that hung from every...
NP: Kenneth Williams.
KW: She didn't have any diamonds, she has paste!
NP: But she had diamonds somewhere because the point is...
KW: That's the whole point, she didn't you great fool! She was broke! That's why you fool! Don't you know about Diamond Lill?
NP: No, but her great hobby and desire was to acquire diamonds!
KW: Oh I see, I didn't know that!
NP: That was why she was known as Diamond Lill.
KW: But they weren't hanging from everywhere!
NP: Not everywhere, that would have been impossible.
CF: Not the face it wouldn't!
NP: I think we'll continue with Just A Minute, and continue with the subject. There are 9 seconds left with you Peter Jones starting now.
PJ: Sheer silk stockings with most elaborate garters...
KW: Deviation! This is disgusting! It's supposed to be a family show! we don't want to hear about underwear and lingerie! It's getting me terribly worked up! Deviation!
NP: It's deviation when you get worked up is it?
NP: Well, we'll watch out and leave the subject with Peter Jones who has 5 seconds to continue on Diamond Lill starting now.
PJ: One end high heeled shoes...
NP: Patrick Moore.
PM: You couldn't have high heeled shoes at both ends!
PJ: Well, she had them at one end and I'm about to tell you what she had at the other end!
PM: Luckily you won't have time!
NP: Peter, a wrong challenge. You have another 3 seconds on Diamond Lill starting now.
PJ: Parted lips full of promise! The eyes a ...
NP: Well, I can remember occasions when Peter Jones took over a subject and he was lying in 4th place, and with tremendous style and penache he leapt forward into the lead. He didn't achieve it this time! He did move into 2nd
place which is quite an achievement in one round. I mention this because I have to give you the final score because we have to wind up the game. Kenneth Williams was just in 4th place, only one point behind Patrick Moore, and he was only one point behind Peter Jones, who as I say leapt forward, but they were all a few points behind Clement
Freud, and our leader once again is Clement Freud. We hope you have enjoyed listening to Just A Minute, from all of us here, goodbye.
ANNOUNCER: The chairman of Just A Minute was Nicholas Parsons, the programme was devised by Ian Messiter and produced by John Lloyd.