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CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
Good evening, good evening, good evening, good evening,
and welcome to QI.
Tonight, we're all going to be pretty infantile.
Playing mummies and daddies tonight are Daddy Cool, Dave Gorman.
CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
Yummy Mummy, Ronni Ancona.
CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
Happy Pappy, Lee Mack.
-CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
And the curse of the mummy's tomb, Alan Davies.
CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
So, erm, why don't you give me a ring some time? Dave goes...
-And Alan goes...
-"For sales enquiries, press one.
"For service, press two.
"For two hours of irritating music, press three.
"For more options, press four. For fewer options, press five.
"Or to speak to one of our operatives, emigrate to Mumbai."
-Thank you, Alan. And don't forget your Nobody Knows joker.
Yes, there may be a question tonight to which the true answer is that nobody knows
and if you play your Nobody Knows joker, you get extra points. Your ignorance might indeed be bliss.
So here's an intimate question to start with.
What did the Pope's father say to the baker's daughter?
Who is the current Pope?
-He's German, is he?
He was born in Germany, he's a German Pope.
-There he is. That's him on the right with those killer eyes that he still has.
-Some would say the far right.
-Yes! Some would!
And his father, too, was called Joseph,
so Joseph Ratzinger Senior married a baker's daughter.
That's the mother in the middle. The question is, how did they meet?
-On the interweb.
-Yes. It was the equivalent...
-Speed dating. They were speed dating.
-Before the interweb and speed dating, there were...
-Would like to meet... Good sense of humour...
-Absolutely! This is what the Pope's father, Joseph Ratzinger,
who was a Bavarian policeman, wrote.
"Middle-ranking civil servant. Single. Catholic." That's a relief.
"43. Immaculate past.
"From the country. Is looking for a good, Catholic, pure girl
"who can cook well, tackle all household chores,
"with a talent for sewing and homemaking
"with a view to marriage as soon as possible."
He added, "Fortune desirable but not a precondition."
He was 43, she was 36. She was called Maria Peintner.
They met up at a coffee house and were married four months later.
-Life was simple then, wasn't it?
-Life was simple then.
-Not so much a singles ad, but more a job.
It would be great if the Pope actually had an entry himself in a lonely hearts column,
because it would be something like, "Single guy, likes to wear a dress,
-"drives a slow forklift truck."
"Expects you to kiss his ring."
-That would be it, wouldn't it?
-Because they've got abbreviations.
-Haven't they got three-letter...
-I have a list of abbreviations to test you on
to see how much you use these singles and wanted ads
and Craigslist and similar.
So D/D, what would that be?
-Does it stand for large breasts?
That may be perhaps quite... Oh, I see, double D.
-We haven't got all night, Stephen.
-Not quite my area of expertise, but I do understand.
-Drunk and disorderly.
-No, it actually means drug and disease free.
-Yes. In the code of these things.
If you feel it necessary to put that, that's just going to raise suspicions.
-Sorry, that's M.
-Yeah, it's no kids.
-That would be nice, but I'm afraid it's a little bit more physical.
-Why would you write that?
You'd just put that, wouldn't you? Just put "well-endowed" and the box number.
Possibly. ALAWP might be the thing to do with WE.
-A large and wavy penis.
-All letters answered...
-All letters answered! Sorry.
ALAWP, all letters answered with...
-Oh, sorry, photo.
-Dave is earning points.
-You know an awful lot about lonely hearts columns!
So you might get, for instance, IPT BBW.
-Big breasted woman.
-Oh, so you know BBW! Very good!
-Very good! Is partial to.
-IPT BBW. Is partial to..
-I don't know if this is going to help me or not,
but some of these acronyms are shared by the world of pornography. LAUGHTER
So take your pick as to how I know them. It's either from lonely hearts or porn.
-That's right, yeah.
-Which would you rather we assume...
-I'm going to leave you guessing, Ronni.
So what would be WE SHM WLTM BBW for NSA fun?
-Does that stand...
-No strings attached fun.
-Very good, Dave.
-A big breasted woman.
-Yes. So WE...
-SHM. H is an ethnic type in American in particular.
-Brilliant. So well-endowed single Hispanic male...
-Would like to meet.
-Big breasted woman.
-Big blue whale.
-For NSA fun.
LAUGHTER For no-strings attached fun.
-Which is when you're into puppetry, but of the glove-puppet variety, not...
-Exactly! That's a sweet way of looking at it.
Presumably, you would charge by the letter in newspapers, so that's why...
-To save money?
-Yes. But you don't need that on the internet.
-You could say, "I have an enormous dong".
-You don't have to go WE, do you?
-But tiny testicles.
-In fact, it's actually an average-size dong, but the testicles make it look enormous.
LAUGHTER It's a trick of the light!
-They're like ball bearings.
-It's only the top of the show.
Let's try to swim for the surface before we hit the depths. Yeah.
-Man gasping for air seeks BBW.
There used to be, in San Francisco in the late 70s,
-there was a handkerchief code in the gay community.
-I've heard about this.
-Yeah. The yellow one?
-It was also which back pocket it was in. If it was left, passive.
-If it was right, it was active.
-What did it mean if you tied four knots and put in on your head?
That meant you were a homosexual from up north. LAUGHTER
You're from Blackpool, from the Golden Mile.
No, if you had yellow in your back left pocket,
-you liked being peed on.
-What does it mean if you wear a yellow thing round your neck hanging down?
I like the idea of someone going to a club
and he's got the yellow hankie, and everyone else thinks, "Urgh! Weirdo!"
LAUGHTER I like the idea of a group of Morris dancers going to San Francisco.
Sending off very mixed signals wherever they go. LAUGHTER
Honestly, in the 70s, there used to be cards. You'd go in a shop in Castro in San Francisco
and there'd be little laminated cards telling you the code so you didn't make a mistake.
-They'd have to be laminated.
All right, I don't know how this conversation's gone in this direction.
Anyway, the Pope's parents met through a lonely hearts ad.
What did the Viceroy of India's daughter like doing with flipperty flop and jumpkins?
-If they're not rabbits... LAUGHTER ..then something's amiss.
Yes, they do sound like rabbits, don't they? Flipperty flop and Jumpkins.
-Are they body parts?
-They're not body parts.
-Who are we talking about?
-The daughter of one of the Viceroys of India.
In the Days of the Raj, a man would be appointed viceroy, vice-king of India.
The last one was Lord Mountbatten before the independence of India.
This man was Lord Lytton and his daughter Emily was an extraordinary Victorian figure.
And she eventually ended up marrying Lutyens, the architect.
He designed most of New Delhi, the huge pink palaces of New Delhi were Lutyens.
That's him there as an older man and that's Emily Lytton.
He looks like she's just told him a really dirty joke. LAUGHTER
This flipperty flop and jumpkins, she had an evening playing flipperty flop and jumpkins
and I'm going to ask Ronni to read out how she describes the evening of flipperty flop and jumpkins.
"I assure you no words can picture either the intense excitement or the noise.
-"I always scream in describing it."
-She could be in the room. There you are.
This was a description of when she was 17 years old.
She played this game, alternately known as flipperty flop or jumpkins, and has a much better name.
-That was weird.
-You said it at the same time!
Absolutely brilliant! And I will give you each a little cup.
It was originally called tiddledy-winks.
For some reason, the second D got dropped, so tiddlywinks. Try hitting it into the target.
So we have to try and get it in the hole.
You have the big one and the little one is called the wink.
-Is this called the squidger?
-I think I went too hard.
-Surely if that's the wink, this must be the tiddly.
-You'd think so.
I do give a point to you for knowing it's called the squidger.
-Off the lip!
-It's meant to be yellow and green versus red and blue.
-And they do have lots of different... There's a squop.
-And a boondock.
And my favourite move, there is a move in the official language of tiddlywinks, the Good move.
-And it's not called that because it's a good move, it's named after John Good.
-Oh, how wonderful!
-So it's named for him.
-The squop is one of the most basic things. What is a squop?
A squop is where you're trying to tiddle your wink so it lands on top of somebody else's.
-Exactly. And if your wink...
I can see why you're using those lonely hearts columns now.
LAUGHTER AND APPLAUSE
-How do you get the lift?
-You get the lift, to be honest...
-You have to play on felt and then it works beautifully.
-Then you've got some purchase.
-This is my ideal gig, where I come on QI but I don't have to talk, I just have to play tiddlywinks.
-This is bullshit!
-You can't get the lift!
-I had plenty of lift there. You've ruined it.
The Good move is named after John Good.
Do you know what a page ranking is? This is similar. You know, in Google terms, a page ranking.
-Do you know why it's called a page ranking?
CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
-I honestly thought you knew the answer to Dave's question.
Finally, I've got one! I know why!
Are you telling me that a page ranking is not because it's a webpage?
It's named after Larry Page, one of the founders of Google.
I'm going to hand out some more toys so there's even more fun to be had.
-I ought to tell you, the winner gets the teddy bear.
-Well, fluffy toy.
-You've got to be joking.
-Wow, you've really raised the stakes!
-You will get the fluffy toy.
-We'll start with Dave.
-OK. Good luck.
-It's like being at the fairground.
-Ronni, come on!
I've just got a bit of dirt in my pocket.
Let's have a read.
-Oh, the tension!
-Did you see that?
-I saw it!
-It nearly went over! Did you see that?
-I saw it.
-I was there!
-He'll be unbearable.
-It's all right, he's already unbearable.
-I was only joking, I've got my own dirty mags in the dressing room.
-Don't let him get it!
-Watch out for the bloke!
-In the net!
-CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
-And you get the fluffy toy!
-And here it is.
-Oh, it's like the fairground.
-It's like the fairground.
-I never said it'd be that one.
-I never said... No, no.
-Anything off the bottom, anything off the bottom. LAUGHTER
-If Lee was a nice man, he'd give that to you, Ronni.
-That's true, I would.
-Thank you very much.
-A bullseye. 25.
OK, why, oh, why, oh, why did they ban rifle ranges
inside pubs in Birmingham?
-Was it, er, common sense?
-You'd think so, but no.
-Price of ammunition.
-No. We're talking about the early 20th century
when it suddenly became very important to have soldiers who were good at firing rifles. Why?
-Cos of the war.
-The Boer War, exactly. And so they started having rifle ranges in pubs.
-Adds a new dimension to getting a round in.
-It certainly does!
And Birmingham was the very centre of the world's gun-making, BSA and other such rifle companies,
and so all these pubs would have rifle ranges inside the pubs,
sometimes literally inside. You'd fire over the heads of customers at targets. But they banned it
-and I want to know the reason why.
-Because there was an accidental death.
No, the answer is not what you might say today, which is health and safety.
It was another more puritanical reason.
Either that picture's been mocked up or they are really casual, those diners.
There are still pubs with rifle ranges in them. In Devises and places like that
they still have pubs with rifle ranges. There's one. You pull away the centre part of the bucket
and there's a tunnel with a target at the end.
Somewhere in the world there's a giant dog with stitches in his neck looking for that.
With a very small neck.
-Cos people were gambling on it?
-Yes, Dave Gorman. That's the weird thing about Britain then.
They didn't care about the fact that live rounds were being fired over people's heads,
-it was that it caused gambling.
-Is that why they introduced the curtain over the score board?
-To hide it.
-It's like the British version of a speakeasy.
-LAUGHTER Nothing here.
-A beautiful curtain it is, and immaculately measured.
-In one Worcester pub, until quite recently, you'd shoot from a bar
across a passageway and into an outhouse. And some teams still shoot in the open bar.
We've got Swindon, Devises, Newport, Hinckley, Nuneaton, Worcestershire still have pubs with rifle ranges.
-There you are. Isn't that quite interesting?
Ah, that's more than we were hoping for. Otherwise it would be called VI. It's only quite interesting.
They did try to ban darts at one point cos of gambling, as well.
Cos it was deemed a game of chance. I think it was in Leeds. And it went to the magistrate
and the landlord of a pub who wanted to keep his dartboard brought in a local expert
and made him play and demonstrate that it was a game of skill.
The idea was you were just hitting the board like a fairground game and whatever you happened to hit
was your score and well done you, you were lucky.
Then he came along and hit a few treble 20s when asked and they proved it was a game of skill.
Very good. There are lots of pub games, of course. I'm sure you've played pub games in your time.
-You may be familiar with some of them.
-Too busy drinking.
But see if you can explain the rules of milking cromock,
hanikin can'st abide it or laugh and lie downe.
Laugh and lie downe, that is a box full of rohypnol.
-Er, no. No. That's...
-Well, milking cromock, I would've thought that was a card game.
-We know that laugh and lie downe
and hanikin can'st abide it are card games.
-Oh. So I managed to get the only one that isn't a card game.
Possibly. Because the time has now passed. Oh, just in time!
Nobody knows is the answer. Nobody knows.
-Extra points for Dave.
The fact is, we only know these games exist because they're on lists of games that have been banned.
So there is statute that says it is illegal to play milking cromock,
hanikin can'st abide it or laugh and lie downe
and all you can do as a games historian is look at it and try and work out...
-But there is some evidence that those were card games.
-I love the idea of a barman just going,
"Hey, are you playing milking cromock?" No.
-But there are some we do know...
-Two blokes running round and probably just one cow going, "Mooo".
There are dice and card games and dominos, but also games called guile bones, noddy board,
-penny prick, hide under hat.
-Hide under hat, that'd be a great game.
-I like it cos it's self-explanatory.
-You need a massive hat or a small person.
-In 1938, a priest wrote to the Times complaining that there was a pub
where they had on the billiard tables tortoise races with little toy jockeys on top.
-LAUGHTER It's the jockeys that makes it lovely, isn't it?
-They could've used giant tortoises and real jockeys.
-If only they had. That was in Weymouth.
-Competitive smoking was very popular.
-Oh, come on!
-And... There you are.
-He's a bit smug.
-He's the champion.
-He blows smoke rings.
-It still exists.
You now have to do it in an outside place or a smoking shelter.
-But who would win a smoking competition?
-I guess the first person to finish the pipe.
-No, the last person to finish the pipe. It's keeping the pipe alight for longest.
It's a real skill. It's how you pack the tobacco into the pipe and then how few puffs you take of it
-so you don't burn it down.
-You're telling me this didn't become a televised sport?
I know, it's shocking, isn't it? Terribly exciting.
But it still exists, competitive smoking.
-So there are other games we can think of.
There was an ancestor of darts you may be familiar with, a Belgian game,
Struifvogelspel. There is it.
You use a duck and the duck has the sharp beak.
It's rather weird. It's tied on the end of a line. It's peculiar. You swing the bird round on a cord
-until the beak gets stuck in the board.
-That'd be a good thing for a murder in Midsomer Murders.
-Actually, that would be brilliant.
-That's a good plot there.
-Is that the dartboard?
-Yeah, that's the back of it. You swing that round
-and wherever the beak lands is your score.
-She doesn't want to play. He's making her.
-There was a distressing betting game in pubs called lark singing
which was very popular in Britain, but also on the continent.
The one whose lark stopped singing last won all the money.
There was the terrible belief that if you blinded the lark, it would sing more.
There was a campaign to stop the blinding of larks which was led by World War I blinded veterans.
-And some larks.
-They knew that being blind wasn't a lark.
But that was unfortunately a popular sport. Humanity's often been very cruel.
I don't know why this reminds me of it, but there was an old variety act
who used to have a dancing duck on his piano.
And he'd play the piano, an upright piano, and he'd play a tune and the duck would dance.
And they worked out he had a hotplate in the top of the piano and it was triggered by him playing.
-So when he started playing, it heated up and the duck would have to sort of...
-That is awful.
-Yes. And there's a magician who's still working, I think, in Spain
who does a trick where there's a goldfish tank on top of a load of face-up cards
and he forces a card on you and then his goldfish selects your card by swimming to it.
And he's basically sewn a little magnet into the goldfish and he moves his knees under the table.
-Yeah, I know. The entertainment world is cruel with animals.
-It is, isn't it?
Anyway, the fact is, the rules of milking cromock are lost forever, but it doesn't matter
because we're not allowed to play it anyway. The most popular entertainment venue in the world
used to be the Coney Island Amusement Park in New York. What was its longest-running attraction?
-Is it an elephant?
-The bearded woman?
-There are lots of that kind of thing.
-Was it a bearded elephant?
There was one particular woman who came to see this every week
-for all the 37 years it was on show.
-It was not what you might call usual entertainment. It's very...
-Ah. Cliff Richard.
I'm trying for a way of framing this to which Cliff Richard isn't the answer.
-It was a really peculiar, unlikely... No, that's not...
-This is not what you'd associate with entertainment. No...
-What about, "It's something you go and see on your summer holiday"? No...
-I'm just going to have to tell you. It was children in incubators.
The infant incubator with living infants. Premature children
were put in incubators, there they are,
and the public would come and see them, they'd pay a quarter, 25 cents.
-Is there a grabbing hand?
You are an evil man.
LAUGHTER It's Angelina Jolie pick 'n' mix.
-It does seem really weird to us.
But the fact is, it was a recent invention, it was invented in 1880,
and no hospitals had them in America. It was a French invention.
And the French inventor went round trying to persuade people they were a good idea
and this park thought, Coney Island, what a great thing to do.
We'll get all the premature babies that are born in New York,
we'll put them in incubators, people can come and look at them and watch them thrive.
-And they did thrive.
-It's literally just warm air.
-Yeah, it's a ventilated, sealed-off area.
It must have been laid open for abuse for pushy stage-school mothers
who were desperate to get their kids in. "Get into the incubator, Lorelei!
"Go on! Get into the incubator!" "But Mom, I'm 11." "So squidge up a little!
-"If someone comes to look at you, do your shuffle three-step."
If someone was seven months and their waters broke,
were they then driven to the funfair instead of the hospital?
-Yes, because the hospital didn't have any incubators.
It was only in 1940 when the New York City Hospital invested in incubators
that they kind of went out of business as an attraction. It seems utterly weird to us
but it was the longest-running attraction at Coney Island.
Anyway, staying with our infancy theme, here's a parenting poser.
Eleanor Roosevelt considered herself a very modern mother. Where did she keep her baby?
-In a drawer probably.
-It's almost as weird.
It was a fad in the 1930s.
-Was it permanently attached to one of those things? What are they called? Papoose.
That'd be fairly normal. We'd consider this weird now. In New York, space is at a premium.
There's a limited amount of space in Manhattan, hence the skyscrapers and so on.
And where do you put your baby? Well, hang it out of the window in a cage.
The baby cage. It caught on for a while.
-Was this the question that Michael Jackson was trying to answer?
Probably. It is a bit disturbing. The baby cage. But there were 12 of them in Poplar in London.
They died out during the Blitz because they were obviously not suitable.
-Eleanor Roosevelt got severely criticised for it and got upset.
She recalled, "It was rather a shock for I thought I was being a modern mother."
You get extra points if you can tell me Eleanor Roosevelt's maiden name. Before she married FDR,
-she was Eleanor what?
-BOTH: Rigby LAUGHTER
Both said at the same time. No, she wasn't.
-Yes! Well done!
-She was Eleanor Roosevelt. Very good.
She was the niece of president Teddy Roosevelt, who was a fifth cousin of the man she married.
-So did she...
-There was no incest involved, fifth cousin is a long way away, but an amazing coincidence.
Do you think she actually changed her name?
Seriously, do you think she said "I'm officially changing my name"?
Then you've not officially got the same name, you've got the same name,
but it's not the same as registering it as a changed name. Do you know what I mean?
-You should be a registrar.
-I ask, "Do you know what I mean?" because I'm not sure I do.
-Do you see what I mean?
-I sort of know what you mean.
-She missed out...
-She missed out on the excitement...
Nobody knows what you mean. She missed out on saying, "I'm trying out my new name."
She may have written her signature in a different way.
Now, describe the miraculous secret machinery that the Chamberlain family used
for delivering babies for 100 years.
-Was it... What's that thing called that you suck a baby out with?
-The ventouse. Did they invent that?
-No, that was after.
-Was it forceps?
-Yes, they invented the forceps.
And they realised how brilliant they were but they were terrified, this was in the 17th, 18th century,
for 100 years, there was no patenting laws, so anybody could have copied it.
And so what they would do is go into a house with this huge box, covered in a cloth,
and say, "We've got our secret device here." They would blindfold the mother,
-She was sat going, "One, two, three, four, five, coming!"
No-one else was allowed in the room, and then they'd play all these sound effects to make it seem...
-..like a piece of machinery, then they would get out, here's an early...
They're pretty disturbing but there they are. That's forceps. There they are.
But for literally 100 years, they kept their secret by disguising this simple device.
They'd get them out and smirk at a barbeque, just turning things. LAUGHTER
Nobody knows. Nobody knows.
Now, epidurals. Do you know when the epidural was first devised?
-I would say...30s.
He died in 1949, he was a man called August Bier.
And he first had this idea that if you put a painkiller into the spine itself,
then anything below the pain signals wouldn't get there.
He tried it on an assistant. He injected his assistant's lower spine with cocaine,
-which is a topical anaesthetic.
-She fell over, said "It worked, let's go".
-It was a he.
-Then they'd laugh and lie down.
-It could have been worse, they could have played Milking Cromock.
He almost did. He made sure the area was numb by pulling the man's pubic hair,
-yanking his testicles...
-And he said, "Hanikin can'st abide it!"
He hit him in the legs with a hammer and singed his thighs with a cigar.
-And sure enough, the assistant felt no pain. So that is how the epidural...
-He never walked again.
-A broken leg and terrible burns.
The first woman in history to have a baby under an aesthetic, which was chloroform,
she was so thrilled by the painlessness of the experience, she named her baby...
-Not chloroform, no. Anaesthesia.
That's actually quite a nice name. It's like semolina or tapioca.
-It does sound like the most boring dinner party guest ever.
Anaesthesia's coming. Oh! LAUGHTER
Not again! Oh!
There were stories about this, it's hard to know how accurate, there were biblical objections
to the idea of chloroform being administered to women in childbirth. Do you know why?
-Cos pain is good for them.
-It's a very specific reference in the Bible. It's right at the beginning.
Do you remember Eve gets Adam into a bit of trouble by making him eat the fruit?
And God says, "Oh, you ate the fruit of the tree whereof I spake thou shouldst not."
-And to the woman he says...
-You will marry Tom Cruise.
No. Unto the woman he said, "I will greatly multiply thy sorrow and thy conception.
"In sorrow shalt thou bring forth children."
-So it was as if God cursed women to have pain.
Some ultra-religious people felt that it was basically God's curse
and they should scream in agony while giving birth.
But then Queen Victoria had Prince Leopold when she had chloroform
and then the habit caught on, and then the epidural and various other such things.
-I didn't know Victoria had a Prince Leopold.
-She had nine children, I think.
They're all named after pubs. LAUGHTER
Da-ding-ting! Very nice. Excellent.
Here's another intimate little secret for you. How can you tell a French baby from a German baby?
The German baby will have wrapped itself in a towel before the midwife has had a chance to fetch it.
It's not often you can do the same joke twice in one show but is the German baby on the far right?
-Is there a difference in cry?
-They have an accent?
-It's not an accent exactly, it's a melodic cadence.
In the womb, the baby is hearing its mother tongue,
and the different languages have different stresses and cadences and melodies,
and you can actually do tests in which someone will say, "That's a German baby, that's French"
just by its gurgle. It's heard the language.
Not only that, they like their mother tongue. You show them videos
and there is someone speaking a language that isn't the one their mother and father speak,
and someone else speaking in their own mother tongue, and they will stare at the one that's theirs.
Even if it's not their parents, they actually are drawn to it.
-So they pick up on the rhythms very early on.
-Glaswegian babies go, "Get me out of that bloody cage!"
But it is fascinating that that early on, in the womb,
they pick up on the melodic cadences of their mother tongue.
-I think that's rather sweet.
-I think it's beautiful, too.
How long do the best hugs last?
-That's a very long hug. I would get embarrassed and restless if someone hugged me for 20 seconds.
-Do you want me to test that? Shall we test that?
-Oh, hello. Here we go. Aww!
That was lovely.
I'm on the clock. I'm on the clock.
-I'm on the clock.
-That was... Oh, God, this is too long.
-This is too long.
-Dave, did you turn on the clock?
-Lovely. That's got to be at least 20 seconds, that was embarrassing.
-That was very uncomfortable.
-See if you can beat it!
Come on, Alan, come on.
-I've been waiting years to do this.
-If you're all hugging, I'm playing tiddlywinks. Sod the lot of you!
Right. That was lovely. That was unusual. I wasn't expecting that response but it was charming.
-You're both wearing nice aftershave.
-Do you want your watch back?
-Did you like my aftershave?
-I certainly did.
-Now, there have been tests, it seems weird...
-Four or five seconds.
-Well, three seems to be the answer.
-Three is the perfect time, you mean?
It seems to be that there is a kind of inbuilt human moment which is three seconds.
If it's less than three seconds, it really is a bit like, that wasn't really a proper hug.
If it's one, two, three. That's nice.
It's just a rhythm that seems to be built into the human race.
The three second period is known as a moment. And it happens in a lot of what we do.
-Don't say it!
-I just can't wait for my great aunt to come round and give me a hug.
-It's all very nice and I'll go, "That was four seconds, you bitch!
"Next time you'll keep it tight or you don't come in."
What spoils hug is when the other person goes, "..and break."
-Yes. Well, have you heard of the five second rule?
-Yes, what is it?
It is where, if you drop food on the floor, it's OK to eat it if you pick it up within five seconds.
-Right, do you believe that?
-No, it's nonsense.
-It is complete nonsense.
It could be OK after five minutes. It just depends on whether the floor is contaminated.
And human beings tend to, if you drop chocolate, or a biscuit, people will pick it up and eat it easily,
-but if it's broccoli or cabbage or something they go, "Oh..."
With a big splat like that, you just think, "Oh, I probably won't worry."
-Do you eat food off the floor, presumably?
-As a rule, I do!
-Is this what you do at speed dating?
Do you eat food off the floor? Move on! Do you eat food off the floor? Move on!
-Ah, you've got a yellow hanky, perfect.
-It was a presumption. It wasn't...
-"You eat food off the floor!" She's quite disgusting.
It's not yellow, it's a white hanky, I've just cleaned that up, thank you very much.
-Once you've got a baby, food on the floor really is fair game.
-If you didn't eat food off the floor you're wasting about £90 a week.
Now, buzz when you know what's so damn interesting about this photograph.
-You said "dam interesting."
-What is it that's interesting?
-Yes, I've got it.
-It's a dam, yes.
-It's got the goats walking across it.
-There are goats walking on it.
-There. They scale...
-Now why would they do that?
-That is pretty impressive!
-Do you know what kind of goat that is?
-It's an ibex. It's an Alpine ibex. An extraordinary thing.
This is a south-facing dam in Italy, the Cingino Dam, and to get a salt lick,
they walk on what is an almost sheer rock surface.
-Isn't it amazing, though?
-Have their little hoofs, sort of, adapted?
Well, you can see there. Yes, I mean, they are, ibexes, like all goats, are incredibly sure-footed.
And they're Alpine and they can scramble up rock faces and things like that.
-But it's astonishing, isn't it?
-Do they fall off sometimes?
-I hope not. I doubt it.
-There's a kebab stand at the bottom.
Terrible and believable at the same time.
"Occasionally one does fall off."
Do you know what the Pyrenean ibex, this is the Alpine ibex, this is in northern Italy,
but do you know what the Pyrenean ibex did in the noughties, between 2000 and 2010?
-There's a Pyrenean ibex.
-Fell off something? Got to the top, couldn't get down?
Something fell on it, or on her, in fact.
There was a violent storm on January 6th 2000 in northern Spain.
Celia, she was the last ever Pyrenean ibex.
And the branch crushed her skull and she died, and the species was declared extinct,
but in 2009, nine years later, she made a comeback
when she became the first cloned animal that had been extinct from a piece of her skin
that was preserved in liquid nitrogen
and a little kid was born, but lasted only seven minutes, and died.
But it is the way forward with extinct species.
There are a lot of frozen arks with highly endangered species whose DNA is being kept
in the hope they will be resurrected one day and this is an example. For seven minutes, isn't that weird?
Talking of things that only show up if you look closely, it's General Ignorance. Fingers on buzzers.
Where was Louise Brown conceived?
-In a test tube.
As soon as it was coming out of my mouth, I thought, "You fool!"
Louise Brown was indeed the world's first in vitro fertilised baby.
But it wasn't a test tube. It was a petri dish.
She's a fraud! She's told everyone she's the first test tube baby!
-She was the first petri dish baby.
-The news claimed that she was the first test tube baby.
There's another Louise Brown, who's 91 years old, and lives in the Stewartry of Dumfries in Galloway,
who has a record, we think, in the United Kingdom, which is rather extraordinary.
-There's no way you could guess it.
-It must be the oldest something.
-Oh, is it too late for this?
-No, we definitely know.
LAUGHTER We could ask her.
-We could ask her if she's still alive.
We think she is the most prolific library book borrower in the country.
-She has read...
-That's too much of a leap from in vitro fertilisation.
Just happens to be the same name. She has read just under 25,000 books.
-Well, she says that. She's borrowed them.
-12 a week. 12 a week and she's never once had a late fine.
That proves she doesn't read them. The fact that she gets them back on time.
It's charming. They're mostly Mills and Boon romances, war stories and historical dramas.
Barbara Cartland was writing that many.
-Yes, exactly, just..
-Just for Louise to keep reading.
I was going to say, if Louise is watching, but she isn't, she's reading a book.
We salute her in the world of dying libraries.
Where did marsupials come from?
-It could easily have been the right answer.
-They only live in Australia.
I knew that.
We'll let you off. They don't only live in Australia, there are marsupials in the Americas.
-What are they called?
-We'll show you a photograph. They're the mammals with the tiniest babies.
-Not the echidna, no.
-Are they Fingerbobs?
-They look like the Clangers!
-They really, really do look like Fingerbobs.
-They are opossums.
I didn't know, I thought that they were born in the pouch.
I didn't realise they're born and have to crawl up and get in the pouch.
And in the case of the opossum, you could get 20 baby opossums on a teaspoon.
-They are absolutely miniscule.
And the mummy licks her fur to make a line,
from where they're born and they crawl up into the pouch.
Cos the babies then develop further in the pouch.
-But they first began...
-That's bizarre because I was under the impression, wrong as ever,
marsupials evolved separately on Australia because Australia was like Madagascar, separate from evolution.
No, but like Madagascar and New Zealand, they all originally belonged to a super-continent,
-which was known as?
-No. It was known as...
-Someone from the audience will know.
-Gondwanaland! It was a super-continent that broke off
and is now South America, Africa and Australasia.
-Or so the scientists say!
-So they say.
But the first marsupials came from the part that is now South America, that had been Gondwanaland.
But they crossed through Antarctica while it was still one continent and into Australia.
So there you are, that's your marsupials, actually originated in what is now part of South America.
-Which brings me to the matter of the scores, and they make fascinating reading.
In first place by quite a long way with plus ten points, it's Dave Gorman!
CHEERING AND APPLAUSE Thank you very much.
I'm speaking almost now like a proud father,
-with a magnificent six points, in second place, Alan Davies.
-CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
-And only just behind with plus five, Lee Mack!
-CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
But with a very creditable minus seven,
-CHEERING AND APPLAUSE
So, all that's left is for me to thank Ronni, Lee, Dave and, of course, Alan.
I leave you with this thought from Leo Burke,
"People who say they sleep like a baby usually don't have one." Good night.
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