WELCOME TO JUST A MINUTE!
starring KENNETH WILLIAMS, CLEMENT FREUD, PETER JONES and SHEILA HANCOCK, chaired by NICHOLAS PARSONS (Radio, 28 March 1978)
NOTE: Ian Messiter's 250th appearance blowing the whistle.
ANNOUNCER: We present Kenneth Williams, Clement Freud, Peter Jones and Sheila Hancock in Just A Minute. 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 once again I'm going to ask our four panelists to talk if they can for 60 seconds on the subject I will give them without hesitation, without repetition and without deviating from the subject on the card. Kenneth, an apt subject to start any programme, making a good start. Will you try and talk on that subject for 60 seconds if you can starting now.
KENNETH WILLIAMS: Making a good start, now how many people must have revolved that question in their minds. Because, it's almost, if you really think about it, something which inevitably crops up no matter what avenue we explore. For the actor, the words, for making a good start, are already engraved by the bard, so to speak, upon his memory. Speak the speech I tell you...
NP: And Sheila Hancock has challenged you.
SHEILA HANCOCK: Repetition of speak.
NP: Yes you did use the word speak before.
SH: So to speak, speak the speech I pray you.
KW: Well I think that's very mean!
NP: It's also rather clever having listened so carefully.
KW: Yes! I don't know why they have women on this show!
SH: Oh God! You're making a good start with that one already!
NP: You're back to the old battle cry! Sheila you have a correct challenge, you get a point for that of course and there are 22 and a half seconds left, making a good start, starting now.
SH: Well making a good start is a very important thing to do in any project you undertake. Because if you do that then you're not discouraged. For instance, the beginning of the day, if you make a good start with the day, you get up...
NP: Peter Jones has challenged.
PETER JONES: Repetition of day.
NP: Yes, you did have more than one day there. So Peter correct challenge to you and there are 12 seconds left for you to talk on making a good start starting now.
PJ: Get up about 6.00 in the morning and go for a swim round the lighthouse. Have a rubdown with a rough towel and then a good English breakfast with lots of fried bacon and eggs, sausages, devils kidneys...
NP: Well Ian Messiter who not only keeps the time for us but blows his whistle when 60 seconds is up, which tells us that um, that's the end of that round, yeah that's right, of course. And Peter Jones was speaking at that moment and he gets an extra point for doing so. So Peter you're in the lead at the end of the first round. And we'd like you to begin the next round, the subject is bubbles. You tell us something about that in Just A Minute starting now.
PJ: My favourite bubbles are the ones that you find in champagne. They tickle my nose and make me giggly. They're quite unlike the ones that are to be discovered in mineral water, a very inferior type of bubble this. And it doesn't have the same intoxicating effect as the one's in that marvelous wine from France. Now if I were to choose a picture to hang in my bathroom, I'm changing the subject now, ah, I would choose that marvellous picture of a little boy with a clay pipe and a bowl of soap suds blowing bubbles. It was used I think to advertise a well-known brand of toilet soap at the turn of the century. And if I had a lot of money and was able to furnish my house in the way I feel I'm entitled to, but owing to circumstances am very rarely able to...
NP: Sheila Hancock challenged.
SH: Deviation. He's talking about his financial situation, not bubbles.
NP: I think he's talking about furnishing his house....
SH: He's, he's going on about how he would like to furnish it but he hasn't got the finance to do it. That's nothing to do with bubbles.
NP: I agree with your challenge. you got in with three and a half seconds to go on the subject of bubbles and you start now.
SH: The sorts of bubbles I can't stand are those things you buy that children blow through a rim...
NP: Well Sheila Hancock was speaking then as the whistle went so she got the extra point and she's taken the lead at the end of the round. And Sheila we'd like you to begin the next round. The subject, taps. We've been in the bathroom once, we're going to stay there obviously with taps starting now.
SH: I've always...
NP: Kenneth Williams challenged.
KW: Unquestionably hesitation.
NP: One second...
KW: There you are! Hesitation!
NP: And she's a guest as well!
KW: A guest! What are you talking about? A guest! She's been on here time in, time out!
NP: As a guest, she's played the game more than our other guests but she's still a guest and...
PJ: And she's also in the lead!
NP: I didn't hear that one!
PJ: She's in the lead as well!
NP: And she's in the lead, well, she usually is, isn't she?
NP: She's pretty competitive, old Sheila!
NP: Young Sheila, I'm very sorry!
SH: No, old Sheila, I had my birthday last Tuesday.
NP: Young Sheila, will you continue with the subject, having got a point for a wrong challenge and there are 59 seconds left, taps, starting now.
SH: I would very much like to have gold plated taps in my bath. I think that would be sumptuous and glamorous. The sort of taps I wouldn't like to have in my bathroom are the ones that you find in America that are the sort of things that they have in Watergate. Where they have little sinister things plugged into your wall, and anything you say is then relayed to spies and used in evidence against you. As a child I had taps on my shoes and used to do dancing all over the place. Pretty bad I was at it too! However it is a form of dancing that(starts to giggle)
SH: Oh thank God for that!
NP: Clement Freud has challenged.
CLEMENT FREUD: Firstly hello! And secondly she repeated dancing.
NP: Yes she did indeed. And Clement...
CF: There are other things I could mention but now there seems no point.
NP: You've obviously been saving it all up because it's about to flow forth with 22 seconds on taps starting now.
CF: The best known and most popular taps are called...
NP: Peter Jones?
NP: Yes he couldn't quite get out the best known and most popular form of tap. There are 17 seconds for taps Peter starting now.
PJ: It's also a tune which is played in America on occasions equivalent to the ones where they play over here...
NP: Sheila Hancock?
SH: Repetition of play.
NP: Yes there's more than one play there. Sheila you listen very well, nine seconds, taps, starting now.
SH: Oh! There is a...
NP: Clement Freud?
NP: Yes! I agree Clement. Seven and a half seconds, taps, starting now.
CF: Cold and hot, the appellations I was searching for when I was very rudely interrupted. Water which is below 32...
NP: Clement got the point on that occasion for speaking as the whistle went, he's in second place with Peter Jones, Sheila Hancock's still in the lead. And Kenneth Williams is trailing a little. Clement Freud will you begin the next round.
NP: The subject's travel. Just A Minute on the subject of travel starting now.
CF: It is generally said that travel broadens the mind, which is why I got rid of much of my hair in order that i would be able to indulge in this pastime in which Thomas Cook is probably the greatest proponent. I have to been to almost every country in Europe with the exception of Albania. And if anyone from there is listening, I'd be awfully grateful if they would invite me because it would finish my collection! I have started in Iceland and been to Finland, Denmark, Sweden, Germany East and West, Hungary, Yugoslavia, and I enjoyed Belgrade almost more than any other place because Buda and pest are infinitely inferior. London, England, Edinburgh in Scotland, and Northern Ireland as well as the southern part have their attractions to the tourist. And agents of all kinds will send you across the Atlantic where the new world beckons...
NP: Well Clement Freud is making up for his early silence. And he took the subject of travel, kept going for 60 seconds without being interrupted and without repeating or deviating or hesitating, so he has one point for speaking as the whistle went and one point for not being interrupted. Clement you're in the lead now with Sheila Hancock. And Kenneth we're back with you to begin, the subject Euclid. Will you tell us something about him in Just A Minute starting now.
KW: Well he was a Greek and he taught mathematics in that incredible city of learning, Alexandria. It is probable that he founded the department that dealt exclusively with axiomatic geometry. Dealing with the plain, the solid three dimensional figure, and of course the sphere. It does not however embrace the much later theories of topological measurement which comes after that incredible man, Raynier. And of course I am deviating from...
NP: Clement Freud has challenged.
CF: Repetition of of course.
NP: Of course you were right and there are 18 seconds left on the subject of Euclid, for you Clement to continue starting now.
CF: I'm always fascinated by Euclid among other Greek learned people who seem to get their ideas predominantly while sitting in a bath. Pythagoras' theory was one of the many...
NP: Kenneth Williams, sir.
KW: Well deviation, we're really discussing Euclid, we're not discussing Pythagoras, he's already discussed Archimedes so we really have gone a long way from the original subject.
NP: Yes but he only just said Pythagoras. He was probably going to say Pythagoras was not the same as Euclid or something similar. You do have to give him a second to establish whether he's going to deviate, which he...
PJ: If he just reels a lot of Greek names with milli-syllables, I mean, it's so boring and it just fills up the time!
KW: Precisely! Precisely! Yes! Hear hear! Hear hear! Hear hear!
NP: I'll tell you what I'm going to do! I'm going to be generous to you Kenneth and a bit harsh on Clement and let, as it was your subject to start with, you have five seconds to take back the subject of Euclid starting now.
KW: Well Euclid said you know and a very interesting proposition it was, that if you measured ...
NP: Well Kenneth Williams...
CF: That was fascinating!
NP: And he was also speaking when the whistle went so he got that extra point so they've all got one for speaking as the whistle went. Kenneth, alas, is still in fourth place, one behind Peter Jones, three behind Sheila Hancock. And Clement Freud is now ahead in the lead, and Peter your turn to begin. The subject, life after marriage. What an interesting subject that Ian's thought of there. Will you talk about it in Just A Minute starting now.
PJ: Well I'm not quite sure whether the question is asking does it exist in the same way as life after death? but I think perhaps I am entitled to have an opinion on this subject. And I would say after the first 25 years there's no question there is some vestige of life still going on. Now if you take a number of couples...
NP: Kenneth Williams challenged.
NP: No! I disagree...
KW: If you take er a number of couples.
NP: No, no, he slurred one word, and no, no, it wasn't a hesitation...
PJ: Well it was a bit of a hesitation. But not much!
NP: No and...
CF: No, I think, for his age...
KW: That's right!
PJ: Well I mean Kenneth Williams can hesitate in the middle of a one syllable word!
KW: Well I mean my lengths are not what they were!
NP: So Peter you keep the subject, you have a point for that wrong challenge and there are 37 seconds, life after marriage, starting now.
PJ: Well the first thing to do once you've got married is to try and breathe some life into this union. Now I suggest you invite a few friends round. Never mind even if it is the honeymoon! And have a real party! I mean leave alone the wedding breakfast, don't have much to do with the formal aspects of life. But just neighbours and people you've known for some years who can get them, persuade them, to come round. And um...
NP: Clement Freud.
NP: No. He did repeat come round, I thought that was what you were going to challenge for. No he didn't...
KW: He said um.
NP: No, no, did he um? I didn't...
SH: Yes he ummed.
CF: He went er, um and stopped. Otherwise there was hardly any hesitation at all! Good for a man of his age..
KW: I don't think that Parsons is even listening! They should take him away somewhere, to Middlesex or something! Yes!
PJ: When I realise...
KW: They want to give him something to get his adrenalin flowing!
PJ: I had said come round before, you see, and I thought are they listening or have they all nodded off?
PJ: Because nobody's challenging this repetition.
NP: Exactly Peter...
PJ: I knew you were listening very faithfully, Mr Chairman...
PJ: I certainly do applaud....
KW: Talk about crawler! What a crawler he is!
PJ: I've always admired the way you remain alert...
SH: Oh shuddup!
KW: Now! He's got his boot laces in his mouth, he has, innee!
NP: Peter you have 12 seconds to continue with life after marriage starting now.
PJ: When life after marriage expands and little tots are tramping round the upper floor in hobnail boots and...
NP: So Peter Jones started with the subject of life after marriage and in spite of many interruptions kept going. He gets points for those and one for speaking as the whistle went. So he's now equal in the lead with Clement Freud. Sheila we're back with you to begin and the subject is wits. So from taps to wits, can you talk on these short subjects in Just A Minute starting now.
SH: It's a good subject to speak on at the moment, because I've just come back from America where I was staying at the Algonquin Hotel where you used to meet Dorothy Parker and Kaufman and Robert Benchley and the well-known wits of New York. And indeed the founder of the New Yorker magazine. And I must say I felt very much their presence and read quite a lot about it and I can't now think of a single thing they said. Apart from...
SH: ... the afore-mentioned lady...
NP: Clement Freud.
CF: I've just thought of something they said.
SH: So have I!
CF: Which was quite funny!
NP: What is it? What was it?
CF: It was George Kaufman who was invited to upstate New York to look at Hart's, his ex-colleague's new house, which he'd built regardless of expense, and planted in the garden some 350 beech trees which were fully grown. And having shown Kaufman all round it, Hart said "do you like it?" and Kaufman said "it's just how God would have done it, had he had the money!"
NP: Well thank you for that contribution Clement, it was delightful...
CF: I'll go now!
NP: It wasn't a correct challenge alas! So Sheila still has the subject of wits and there are 35 seconds left starting now.
SH: I've just thought of something which the afore-mentioned lady said. When asked to comment on somebody's performance she said "she ran the gamut from A to B". However I can only think of one other comment which I think was said by one of them, when asked... no, it wasn't them, it was somebody else much later...
NP: Peter Jones has challenged.
SH: A stumble...
NP: Well it was repetition of it was etcetera, yes. Um...
SH: But he didn't say...
PJ: Well she started to say something, then she said no it wasn't. I mean that sounds like hesitation.
SH: That's not hesitation, I carried on.
NP: No she didn't actually hesitate Peter. She repeated it was um now...
PJ: She was about to tell us something and then she stopped and went on to something else.
SH: I didn't stop, I didn't stop.
NP: But she didn't actually hesitate, you see...
SH: I went on...
NP: This is the thing. She went on but she did repeat it was as it now when and things like that. So that was an incorrect challenge...
PJ: Ah I see...
NP: If you'd said repetition I'd have granted it.
PJ: Yes well I think you're such an excellent chairman that I'm sure that you're absolutely right!
NP: Eighteen seconds are left for wits Sheila starting now.
SH: I've just thought of a rather witty film criticism. When asked to comment on the film Ben Hur, somebody said loved Ben, hated her. And also I am a camera, me no like her! I'm desperately trying to think of something that Bernard Shaw or...
SH: Oh! I feel very ashamed! All the witty things that people have said and I couldn't think of anything!
NP: Sheila you've taken the lead at the end of that round. And Kenneth Williams your turn to begin, the subject, contrasts. Will you tell us something on that in Just A Minute starting now.
KW: There is a notable theory of philosophy maintaining that this is the very way in which definitions themselves, nomenclatures are arrived at. Thus hot only is possible because of cold. Thus contrasts make the very essence of what you are supposed to be discussing earlier on with my lovely colleague, Miss Sheila Hancock...
NP: Sheila Hancock has challenged you.
SH: Deviation. He must have gone mad! He never says anything nice to me!
KW: Give me a point!
NP: But the only thing I can say is that he must be illustrating the subject because he's such a contrast. I mean one minute he's saying that I'm the best chairman...
SH: I know!
NP: in the world and the next...
SH: That's true!
NP: ... he's saying that I'm rubbish!
PJ: Yes! He's so desperate to keep going he was prepared to say anything!
SH: One minute he's saying we mustn't have women on the show and the next minute I'm his lovely colleague!
NP: Anyway Kenneth I disagree with the challenge so you have another point, you have 26 seconds, contrast, starting now.
KW: Thus very often wit is itself an example of contrasts. So we hear of a famous impresario saying to the young Osmond boy "you have Van Gogh's ear for music"! And ... oh you've put me off now!
NP: Clement Freud challenged you when you were put off.
KW: Well I was going to say, aint she lovely! My lovely colleague Sheila Hancock was instancing wit. And I was going to go on to that you see, only because I was going to try and do a contrast of that and another kind of wit. But I didn't get a chance because he come in there and ruined it!
NP: You got the big laugh you expected on the Van Gogh!
NP: Yes. Clement, your challenge?
NP: Yes and there are five and a half seconds, contrast, starting now.
CF: I used to buy a box of chocolates which were milk and plain, which...
NP: Clement Freud got a point for speaking when the whistle went and a round of applause because I think everybody in the audience knew to what he was referring. And he's back in the lead, this time alongside Peter Jones. And Peter, it's your turn to begin. And the subject is keeping pigs. Why, why um, why Ian Messiter should want you to talk on that I've no idea but will you try in Just A Minute starting now.
PJ: Well it's a strange coincidence but last time I was on Just A Minute I was asked to say something about pigs. And after the performance one of the members of the audience met me outside, and she said there was a man in Wiltshire who used to wash his pigs every morning and then he used to run around the field with them until they dried off. She said "I thought you'd be particularly interested in this because you mentioned Wiltshire in your...
NP: Clement Freud.
CF: Repetition of Wiltshire.
NP: Yes I'm afraid you mentioned Wiltshire before.
PJ: That was last week, wasn't it?
NP: The man...
SH: You did say the man from Wiltshire...
NP: ... was from Wiltshire...
PJ: Oh yes, yes.
NP: ...and you told us the man came from Wiltshire. Pity, isn't it! Thirty-five seconds, keeping pigs, Clement, starting now.
CF: Keeping pigs and playing Just A Minute are two of my less favourite occupations, not necessarily in that order! The favourite pigs in my part of the country which is East Anglia are called long whites which is an extraordinary terminology. Because the animals themselves are extraordinarily dirty. Perhaps the worst thing about keeping pigs is eating pork. This is something which simply doesn't go with the other, because if you enjoy...
NP: Kenneth Williams.
KW: Deviation, the subject is keeping pigs, not eating the food. The two things are quite different.
NP: Yes. Well all right. Some people who keep pigs do eat pork but I think he was on to the subject of eating pork so I give you the challenge and there are three seconds left starting now.
KW: You've got to give them all the old muck you can find! And...
NP: So Kenneth got the point for speaking as the whistle went and alas, he's still in fourth place. The other three are out in the lead and there's about one point separating each one of them with Clement just in the lead. Sheila Hancock, your turn to begin. The subject, the deadliest of the seven sins....
SH: The deadliest?
NP: The deadliest of the seven sins. Will you tell us something about that in Just A Minute starting now.
SH: I am frantically trying to think what the seven deadly sins are. I seem to remember one of them is avarice in which case I will choose that because I can't think what the other six are anyway.
NP: Kenneth Williams.
KW: Well she said it before, she couldn't remember what they are. And now she's said it again, she can't remember what they are.
NP: That's right, she repeated herself. And so you take over the subject Kenneth and there are 49 seconds left on the deadliest of the seven sins starting now.
KW: It's pride! And wrath! And envy! And..
NP: Sheila Hancock challenged.
SH: He's listing them! He's not saying the deadliest!
NP: I quite agree! A very good challenge! Deviation, 43 seconds, the deadliest of the seven sins starting now.
SH: Because I think that wanting things that are not your own has probably been the downfall of our civilisation!
KW: Hear hear! What a true point!
SH: We are geared...
KW: Hear hear! Very well said!
SH:... towards always wanting things we can see.
KW: Hear hear!
SH: I'm keeping going you notice, I'm not hesitating despite Kenneth Williams' avarice of wanting to get the point from me!
NP: Clement Freud challenged.
CF: Repetition of avarice.
NP: Yes you repeated avarice, alas! I'm sure Kenneth's interjection didn't help you Sheila! Bad luck!
SH: Raving mad!
NP: For those of you at home who wonder what might be happening, it is Kenneth Williams having one of his little turns! He's absolutely fallen about with glee at the thought of his response to his comments! There are 26 seconds left on the subject for you Clement, the deadliest of the seven sins, starting now.
CF: To my mind the deadliest of the seven sins is gluttony. Bread and butter and margarine and marmalade, jam, peaches, cream, sausages...
NP: Peter Jones has challenged.
PJ: He's just giving a list again!
NP: I agree with you that he'd deviated...
PJ: He's boring!
NP: He wasn't going on the subject of the deadliest of the seven sins. He was giving a list...
PJ: But he even mentioned jam and marmalade so he repeated preserves!
CF: Surely gluttony is the repetition of preserves.
NP: But I wouldn't have thought those very modest things like bread and butter would be called gluttony. If you stuff yourself...
CF: If you ahve enough... oh well...
NP: ... with those, it's very modest. I think Peter has a good challenge there for you were deviating and there are 17 seconds for the deadliest of the seven sins, Peter, starting now.
PJ: I think sloth is by far the deadliest of all the seven sins, none of which is very attractive. But lying in bed and refusing to get up and not going to work and not cleaning your bedroom or living room and generally...
NP: Clement Freud.
CF: Not, not, not, not.
NP: You did not not a bit. You got a bit knotted there Peter! And Clement has got in with one second to go on the deadliest of the seven sins starting now.
NP: And I've received a message that we have no more time to play Just A Minute so let me give you the final score. Kenneth Williams, in spite of his excellent contributions as usual, finished in fourth place, a little way behind our guest Sheila Hancock in third place. She was a little way behind Peter Jones who just finished behind this week's winner, Clement Freud. Well we hope you've enjoyed the contest, we hope you've enjoyed the game and will want to tune in again. Until then 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 Browell.