Episode 2 Room 101


Episode 2

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Hello, I'm Frank Skinner, and welcome to Room 101,

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the show where three guests battle to get the things they hate

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entombed for all eternity in the dreaded vault.

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They'll have to argue their case well because, in each round,

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only one item can be chosen.

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The final decision is mine.

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Let's meet this week's guests.

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Joining me tonight are "Last Leg" Alex Brooker,

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"Break A Leg" Sally Phillips,

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and "Bite Your Legs" Jeremy Paxman.

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APPLAUSE

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OK, so what's upsetting Jeremy Paxman?

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APPLAUSE

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Some of the audience obviously recognise him

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-from that caricature.

-He eats a lot of salt.

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LAUGHTER

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I just think that David Cameron was the worst Prime Minister

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we've had for a very, very long time.

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Several generations.

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Certainly since Anthony Eden, possibly since Neville Chamberlain,

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probably since Lord North, in fact, who lost the American colonies.

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So I'm...

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That could be the first Lord North reference

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we've ever had on this show.

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But not the last tonight, I can assure you!

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I think you're choosing him next, aren't you?

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LAUGHTER

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The real sin, I think, with Cameron was - this man who,

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in the words of friend of mine,

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got to the top of the tree in order to set it on fire...

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-Hmm.

-..put the interest of his party before the interest of the country,

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and decided to have this referendum.

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Believed one thing was the only right outcome for the country,

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didn't campaign for it, got the opposite outcome,

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and then buggered off!

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LAUGHTER AND APPLAUSE

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Just doesn't seem like leadership to me.

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No. I mean, I think his plan was to destroy UKIP, wasn't it?

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-I thought you were going to say destroy YOU!

-No!

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I think that's his next plan. LAUGHTER

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When he sees this.

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No, I think his plan was to destroy UKIP,

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which, as we know, is Ukip's job.

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LAUGHTER

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So, when you say he's the worst Prime Minister since Lord North,

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don't you think that Theresa May

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sort of outmistaked him

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when she called a general election?

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Yes, I suppose she did, really.

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But that election hasn't changed fundamentally the direction

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of the country in the way that the referendum has.

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Mm, good point.

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LAUGHTER

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I tell you what, when he first came to power, of course,

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he was part of the coalition.

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I have a lovely souvenir of that...of that era.

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This is a coalition mug.

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Oh, it's lovely!

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It's a fetching thing!

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Yeah, with Cameron, and...

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-..they've sort of got them to scale to match their relative power.

-Yes.

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Cos I always thought it was like...

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You know when you see a footballer come on the pitch

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and he's holding hands with the mascot who's dressed the same,

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but you know only one of them's going to be playing?

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That's how it was with the coalition, I thought.

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There was a time when he left his kid in a pub.

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And I thought, "Maybe he's not ALL bad."

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LAUGHTER, APPLAUSE

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Maybe there is a bit of him that IS like the rest of us.

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Yeah. You're obviously,

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probably the only person here who sort of knew him,

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is that fair to say?

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-Sort of, yes.

-Yeah. See, I imagine he's one of those politicians

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who's very different sort of off-camera than he is on camera.

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-Is that fair?

-I don't think so. I mean, he's a smoothy chops.

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OK.

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That's the sort of analysis we never got from you on Newsnight.

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We've got a clip of him playing table tennis,

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which I think sort of shows what he's like

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as an international statesman in some way.

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-OBAMA:

-A little spin there.

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Don't... Don't laugh cos I'm nervous.

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-Obama can play, can't he?

-Of course he can play!

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He's good at everything.

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It was a very strange tweet that David Cameron sent.

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Look at this.

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And then a photo of him on the phone.

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As if Obama called and he said to someone, "It's Obama!

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"Quick take a photo!"

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LAUGHTER

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He looks like he's just been put on hold.

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LAUGHTER

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Do you actually think Obama did that when he left office

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and never told him?

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He's got some bloke in Bangalore trying to explain to him

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what he should do to reboot his Wi-Fi!

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LAUGHTER

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Isn't it amazing? Don't you find that, as a political analyst,

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the fact that for two whole terms America wanted Barack Obama,

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and then the next thing they wanted was Donald Trump?

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-It's quite a big change of opinion, that, isn't it?

-Yeah.

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It's the biggest political switch

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since Lembit Opik went from Sian Lloyd

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to Gabriela Cheeky.

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That's an absolutely appropriate analogy!

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OK, so, what is winding up Sally?

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Yeah.

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AUDIENCE: Oooh!

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This is going to be brilliant!

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LAUGHTER

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The cult of positive thinking,

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which is the kind of pseudoscience,

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the idea that you are magic and that your brain,

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through the power of quantum physics,

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can summon anything to yourself that you want.

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So your brain is inordinately powerful and anything you think

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materialises.

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So, if you visualise yourself with a very attractive boyfriend,

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you will get a very attractive boyfriend.

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But you have to be very, very careful

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and police your mind at all times.

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Because if you accidentally envision yourself having sex

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with David Cameron, that also will happen!

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But presumably, you're anti-negative thinking as well?

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I am anti-extreme optimism and extreme pessimism.

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Anything that pretends that the other side isn't there.

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But I think that, basically,

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to be pessimistic is less stressful than to be...

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..optimistic. Like, being really pessimistic is kind of fun.

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And if you have zero expectations of life,

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you're generally delighted, I find.

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LAUGHTER

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It makes you happy.

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Well, I have to say, if you don't like positive thinking,

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you're certainly on the right show.

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I mean, I think it's quite important

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to not go around asking the question, "Why me?"

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when something bad happens. But go, "Why NOT me?"

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I mean, to hold both those questions.

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I tend not so much to ask "why me?" as "why not them?".

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LAUGHTER

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There's always someone who seems to deserve misfortune

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much more than I do.

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I tell you where this belief definitely exists -

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on Deal Or No Deal.

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Cos they open the box and say,

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"I'm really now rooting for you on this one."

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What's in the box is not going to change from when they brought it on.

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Noel Edmonds, of course...

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He is, he's a cosmic orderer.

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-A cosmic orderer?

-Which is basically like intergalactic Amazon.

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He, like...

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Noel Edmonds actually believes that if you write down a list of what you

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want, you will get everything on that list.

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You don't even get that with Ocado.

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LAUGHTER AND APPLAUSE

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Then there's... There's the guy who

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ordered, in 2014 from Tesco's, a walnut loaf,

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and they substituted it with an octopus.

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-Really?

-Yeah!

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Well, everyone gets a leg, as they used to say.

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I mean, I can see the argument for being positive in life.

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I don't know if it necessarily would change a physical thing,

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but it seems better than being negative.

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I just think it's dangerous to exclude the other side.

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-But I am 60 now.

-Ah!

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I know!

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-Think positively, Frank.

-You look amazing.

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But when you get...

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It feels like a bit of an important thing,

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and you can look at it two ways.

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For example, one thing I thought when I was 60,

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it suddenly struck me that I've probably got enough pencils

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to last me the rest of my life.

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Now, that's a positive spin, I would say.

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At the same time, when I heard that Big Ben wasn't going to bong till

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2021, I thought, "That could be it for me and Big Ben."

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LAUGHTER

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Does it seriously make you feel better that you might have enough

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pencils to last until you die?

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It does, it does. I walk past pencil shops now and think...

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LAUGHTER

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"Don't bother me."

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What about this? This is a jar of smiles, it's called.

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And if you're feeling a bit down,

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you just put your hand in the jar of smiles and take out a positive

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thought, and it raises you up for the rest of the day.

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I can't believe I'm going to offer one of these to Jeremy Paxman.

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LAUGHTER

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But I am, I am.

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-How exciting! Come on. After you.

-Dig deep, dig deep, it's not...

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You can pick any one you like.

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Thank you very much.

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I've got to be positive to think I can pick one of these out.

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No, you can do it.

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I was rooting for you!

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LAUGHTER

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OK, what have you got, Sally?

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"Your past mistakes are there to guide you, not define you."

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AUDIENCE: Oooh!

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Well, if David Cameron was watching this, that will cheer him up again.

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That's true.

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-Jeremy.

-Well, this in fact... This is useful, too.

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"Failure is the opportunity to begin again more intelligently."

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Looks like you're back on Newsnight.

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LAUGHTER

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-Alex.

-"One small positive thought in the morning

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"can change your whole day."

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AUDIENCE: Aww!

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That's the best euphemism I've ever heard in my life.

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Just to prove, one last bit of proof that it doesn't always work,

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positive thinking, this is a guy called Kurt Bradley.

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And Kirk Bradley was so confident that Manchester City

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were going to win the Champions League

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that he had a tattoo celebrating that very fact.

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There you go. "2011 champions."

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Didn't happen.

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Unfortunately. I have to say, though, I know how he feels.

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I had a tattoo done.

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LAUGHTER AND APPLAUSE

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OK, and so to Alex...

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It's not as much the tourist attractions themselves.

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Like, I like a pyramid as much as the next man.

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It's the other people that go to them that ruin it.

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Every tourist attraction I have ever been to has been ruined by other

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people. By tourists. It's horrendous.

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You know, we went to Mexico, went to Chichen Itza, the big temple.

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All I wanted was a funny little photo

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where it looked like I was holding it.

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I don't think that's much to ask, if you've gone to Mexico.

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People getting in the way, in the back of shot.

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Harry Potter World, a very different experience,

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but again ruined by other people.

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I'm sick of it.

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Went swimming to see turtles.

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The fellow, the tour guide yells "turtle",

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and you think a few people would just put their goggles underneath,

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there's a turtle. You've seen one before. They acted like

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he'd just yelled "mermaid"!

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It's a scramble, there's GoPros everywhere...

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I got hit in the head with a GoPro.

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It's like, "Why have I bothered?"

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Well...

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LAUGHTER

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I've got an idea for you, Alex.

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-Go on.

-If you don't like tourist attractions, don't be a tourist.

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Hmm.

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That should have been in one of those little jars on a bit of paper.

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I went on - and I swear this is a true story -

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I took my partner on a romantic weekend to Bergen, in Norway,

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and we basically had

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the Leprosy Museum to ourselves.

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So what YOU'RE doing, you're going, you know, to the massive crowd...

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If you don't like people, you need to just drop your sights a bit.

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The thing is, if I went to the Leprosy Museum,

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I'd worry that people thought I was part of the attraction.

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"It's like Madame Tussaud's in here, let's get a photo with this guy!"

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You've been to Sydney?

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Yes, I have been to Sydney.

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Now, when you first saw the Sydney Opera House,

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weren't you blown away by it?

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Yeah, I thought it was great.

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The first time I went, cos I don't drink, I don't do drugs,

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so the only way I can get sort of spaced out now is with a long-haul

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flight. You know when you're in Sydney, sort of like that,

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you've just had 24 hours on a plane,

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and I went to the bay and looked at it.

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And I stood there on my own for about ten minutes looking at this...

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You know... There, the Sydney Opera House.

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And I remember of all the thoughts you could have about that,

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about the architecture, about opera, whatever,

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the thought that went through my head most dominantly was,

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"I bet I could make a model of that

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"out of my own toenails."

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LAUGHTER

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And...

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When I got home...

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Now...

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LOAD GROANING

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Look at that.

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Now, you can't get that in the souvenir shops.

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And I tell you, what about this?

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As a development I did, when I found another nail...

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So what I've managed to do with this one is Sydney By Night.

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APPLAUSE

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Absolutely beautiful.

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Have I won you over, Alex?

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You know what?

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Ignore what I've said.

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It is a pain at tourist attractions, a lot of people,

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but there is something very exciting about seeing those things.

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The first time you see the Sydney Opera House

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or the Statue of Liberty, it's really amazing.

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So I don't think I can put those in.

0:15:450:15:48

Positive thinking, you know, I think...

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I agree, at the sharp end it's bad,

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but I am the sort of a person who does believe in those things,

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that people say if you really believe it, it might happen.

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David Cameron, he's in.

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APPLAUSE

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All righty, so what is winding up Sally Phillips?

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APPLAUSE

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These basically turn someone from a decent human being into a moron

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in under two minutes.

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Like that.

0:16:380:16:39

What you're saying, this is a particular...

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It's an activity tracker.

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Yes, so it's a thing that keeps track of all your steps and...

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It's a pedometer that's, like, more judgmental.

0:16:490:16:52

Yeah.

0:16:520:16:53

But doesn't it keep you fit, and isn't it an incentive to...?

0:16:530:16:56

Well, it steals all the joy out of going for a walk

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or doing any exercise whatsoever.

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So it orders you to do 10,000 steps per day.

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Now, this is a figure plucked out of the air from a study done

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in the 1960s on a very small group of Japanese men.

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Now, the entire world has been ordered by these different companies

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to do 10,000 steps a day. And that's actually, like, too much to do,

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so you get people at the end of the day

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sort of doing this in the kitchen.

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No-one can concentrate until they've done it.

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-I do wear one.

-Yeah?

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Here it is, in fact, in case you've never seen one in action,

0:17:290:17:32

so that's the thing.

0:17:320:17:35

So I've done 2.3km today.

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Not brilliant. Or is it 1.7?

0:17:390:17:42

One and a half calories I've burned off.

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That can't be right, can it?

0:17:510:17:53

Also this oversharing thing, you can share your workout with everyone,

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like anyone is interested,

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but people have now started sharing what it does to their heart rates

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during sex. Like...

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I haven't had it THAT long.

0:18:050:18:07

LAUGHTER

0:18:070:18:10

Yeah, but I think

0:18:140:18:15

any measuring is sort of ultimately destructive cos it takes you out

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of the moment and you stop enjoying things.

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Well, I recently lost a stone and a half.

0:18:220:18:24

-Congratulations.

-Thank you.

0:18:240:18:25

And...

0:18:250:18:26

I'm just trying to quell the rumours.

0:18:290:18:31

I didn't do that much.

0:18:310:18:34

I just sort of stopped eating...

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I stopped eating cake, and that was basically...

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-That'll do it.

-Yeah. I had the occasional lemon drizzle,

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but what do you expect at my age?

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LAUGHTER, GROANING, APPLAUSE

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No, but I... Don't groan and then clap.

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Make your minds up.

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Do you wear one, Alex?

0:18:540:18:55

No, but the only time I've ever kind of used it,

0:18:550:18:58

like on the iPhone it says how many steps you've done,

0:18:580:19:01

and I quite like to use it as a measurement of laziness.

0:19:010:19:05

So you'd be there on a Sunday, and you go,

0:19:050:19:08

"I've walked ten steps today."

0:19:080:19:10

And then that gets competitive.

0:19:170:19:20

-What, to do less?

-Yeah.

0:19:200:19:22

The challenge is to do less steps

0:19:220:19:24

than there are members of Steps.

0:19:240:19:26

There is a thing called the Hey Bracelet.

0:19:290:19:32

You buy one for you and one for your partner.

0:19:320:19:35

-Yeah.

-And your partner could be in a different country,

0:19:350:19:38

but if you press the top of your Hey Bracelet,

0:19:380:19:43

it will squeeze their wrists

0:19:430:19:44

wherever they are, as if you'd affectionately

0:19:440:19:47

reached out across continents and squeezed your partner's wrist.

0:19:470:19:53

Isn't that...? I mean, it will be misused, I think we all know that.

0:19:530:19:56

LAUGHTER

0:19:560:19:59

So, what's upsetting Jeremy?

0:19:590:20:02

Everyone has seen these things.

0:20:110:20:14

-Yes.

-They are completely ridiculous.

0:20:140:20:16

They're founded on the notion that somehow a dog needs a jacket

0:20:160:20:20

cos it has no external covering, which is just absurd.

0:20:200:20:25

I don't understand why people do it.

0:20:250:20:26

They make their dogs look ridiculous.

0:20:260:20:29

They must get into a filthy state.

0:20:290:20:32

I would... I just don't see the point of them.

0:20:320:20:35

Well, they're never warm enough, are they, though, dogs?

0:20:350:20:38

How would YOU know?

0:20:380:20:40

Well, if you light a log fire,

0:20:400:20:41

they're always front row, straightaway.

0:20:410:20:44

No matter how much fur they've got, so...

0:20:450:20:47

Also, if you're going to put clothing on a dog,

0:20:480:20:51

the temptation would be trousers, wouldn't it?

0:20:510:20:54

-Yeah.

-Because the least furry part

0:20:540:20:57

of a dog is around the private parts.

0:20:570:21:00

There's hardly any fur there. It's the opposite of humans.

0:21:000:21:03

-What?!

-If I wore a dog skin, I'd basically complete the jigsaw.

0:21:060:21:10

The whole thing would...

0:21:100:21:11

But they always put jackets on them.

0:21:140:21:16

It's like Top Cat. You know, Top Cat just wears a waistcoat.

0:21:160:21:20

Nothing underneath. Donald Duck.

0:21:200:21:22

It's not right.

0:21:230:21:24

Come on, back me up on this.

0:21:250:21:27

I nearly bought a dog sweater by mistake in Topshop,

0:21:270:21:29

I thought it looked nice.

0:21:290:21:30

I was like, "What are these holes for?"

0:21:300:21:33

-Oh, for yourself?

-For myself, I thought, "This is nice."

0:21:330:21:36

It turned out it was for a dog.

0:21:360:21:37

Yeah, but speaking of dog sweaters, are you aware of chiengora?

0:21:390:21:44

Chiengora is wool that is made from the hair of a dog,

0:21:440:21:49

so when you brush your dog,

0:21:490:21:51

you save that stuff out of the brush and then it can be woven into a

0:21:510:21:54

garment. I am not making this up.

0:21:540:21:56

-No, I believe you.

-This is a woman wearing

0:21:560:21:59

the excess fur of her own dog.

0:21:590:22:02

It's true, so that cardigan and scarf is made from that dog.

0:22:040:22:07

And her wig, by the look of it.

0:22:070:22:09

I don't know where she got that from.

0:22:090:22:11

She must have a ginger cat.

0:22:110:22:13

LAUGHTER

0:22:130:22:16

I'm glad I said cat!

0:22:160:22:18

I actually have got a poncho.

0:22:230:22:26

This is genuine. This is a dog hair poncho.

0:22:280:22:32

AUDIENCE GROANS

0:22:320:22:34

Don't like it? It's lovely...

0:22:340:22:35

-And...

-Smelly?

0:22:350:22:38

I'm sorry, higher legs now, I'm walking a bit like this.

0:22:380:22:40

You know how they do that thing with their hind legs?

0:22:410:22:44

I hate it when they do that.

0:22:440:22:46

That sort of "here's my genitals" look.

0:22:470:22:49

This is... Feel that, that's proper, proper...

0:22:520:22:55

Do you want to feel a bit of dog?

0:22:550:22:56

-What do you think?

-Doggie.

0:22:560:22:58

It is doggie. This is from a chow.

0:22:580:23:02

MUFFLED LAUGHTER

0:23:020:23:04

That wasn't a joke.

0:23:040:23:06

Do you have any idea how ridiculous you look?

0:23:060:23:10

I've just seen myself on the monitor, I do look a bit...

0:23:100:23:13

I look like I've just emerged

0:23:140:23:16

through the skin of a rice pudding.

0:23:160:23:19

LAUGHTER

0:23:190:23:22

But it's a dog jacket of a whole different kind,

0:23:300:23:34

I think you'll agree.

0:23:340:23:35

OK, and so to Alex.

0:23:350:23:38

There's become a worrying trend in football now of football fans,

0:23:430:23:48

not children, grown adults who have decided to voice their displeasure

0:23:480:23:54

using a sign which they've made at home.

0:23:540:23:58

And I am completely baffled by it.

0:23:580:24:01

I'm an Arsenal fan, so we had a spate in the last...

0:24:010:24:05

AUDIENCE GROANS

0:24:050:24:07

We had a spate in recent seasons

0:24:070:24:11

where a lot of people want the manager to go.

0:24:110:24:14

And these Wenger Out signs appeared from everywhere, and everyone

0:24:140:24:19

seemed to have them, very much like Fitbits.

0:24:190:24:21

This is sort of a classic example of it at the Emirates.

0:24:210:24:25

It's absolutely baffling.

0:24:250:24:27

The idea that before you go to football,

0:24:270:24:30

you could be sat at home

0:24:300:24:32

and, like, your child would turn around and just go,

0:24:320:24:35

"Mum, what's Dad doing with my felt tips?"

0:24:350:24:38

"Well, he's making a sign to tell Arsene Wenger that he wants him to

0:24:390:24:44

"leave, if you just leave him to it,

0:24:440:24:45

"cos he's trying not to go out of the lines," while being very angry.

0:24:450:24:48

And it's just baffling.

0:24:480:24:51

Do you think it's because Emirates Stadium is so quiet,

0:24:510:24:54

people are self-conscious about shouting out loud?

0:24:540:24:57

LAUGHTER

0:24:570:24:59

There used to be a bloke by me, every summer, a bloke, an old guy,

0:24:590:25:03

and every time somebody missed a shot, he'd say,

0:25:030:25:06

"You'd have been no good on the five-inch mortars."

0:25:060:25:09

I thought, "When did you first shout that? 1941?"

0:25:110:25:16

The Wenger Out campaign was an absolute...

0:25:170:25:21

It went kind of global.

0:25:210:25:23

It was absolutely ridiculous.

0:25:230:25:26

Well, this... We have a shot here of an anti-Donald Trump protest in

0:25:260:25:31

Parliament Square. Obviously, a lot of people felt very,

0:25:310:25:35

very strongly about Trump becoming President,

0:25:350:25:38

but if you look on the right there, next to...

0:25:380:25:41

LAUGHTER

0:25:410:25:45

There's actually a Wenger Out sign.

0:25:450:25:48

All sorts of sports now are going for this sort of protest thing.

0:25:500:25:53

Golf and snooker have had this phenomenon.

0:25:530:25:57

To me, that's worth it.

0:26:330:26:36

There is one home-made sign phenomenon I really like,

0:26:360:26:41

and that is, you know, FC Magdeburg, in Germany,

0:26:410:26:45

they went five games without scoring a goal.

0:26:450:26:49

And their fans had these arrows made.

0:26:490:26:54

LAUGHTER

0:26:540:26:56

And every time they attack, they would point them at the goal!

0:26:560:27:00

Ironically, we used very similar arrows to taunt them from our coast

0:27:020:27:07

during the Dad's Army opening...

0:27:070:27:09

LAUGHTER

0:27:090:27:11

OK, so...

0:27:110:27:12

I'm not going to put dog jackets in.

0:27:150:27:18

And I think Fitbits, they might make some people like automatons,

0:27:180:27:23

but there are some people who maybe wouldn't do exercise who are doing

0:27:230:27:26

exercise, and that's got to be a good thing.

0:27:260:27:28

They do exercise for two weeks.

0:27:280:27:29

Yes, but I think that is what you're supposed to do exercise for,

0:27:290:27:33

according to most gym membership research.

0:27:330:27:35

But I like people to shout and swear at football matches,

0:27:370:27:40

I don't think it should involve writing.

0:27:400:27:42

So much of our communication now is about texts and tweets and stuff,

0:27:420:27:46

so I am going to put home-made football signs into Room 101.

0:27:460:27:51

APPLAUSE

0:27:510:27:54

And that brings us to the end of the show.

0:28:040:28:06

Well done, Jeremy, you were the most persuasive guest, so you are this

0:28:060:28:09

-week's winner.

-Thank you.

0:28:090:28:12

APPLAUSE

0:28:120:28:15

But you were all truly marvellous,

0:28:150:28:18

so please give a big thank-you to Alex Brooker,

0:28:180:28:21

Jeremy Paxman and Sally Phillips. And thank you. Goodnight.

0:28:210:28:26

Room 101 returns with host Frank Skinner. Alex Brooker, Jeremy Paxman and Sally Phillips compete to have their pet hates and peeves consigned to Room 101. Topics include positive thinking, tourist attractions and David Cameron.


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