Friday, 28 September 2007

Frank Carson in a Post Office

No facts for you today. Instead, it’s going to be a bit like ‘Points of View’ where you have a chance to comment on the recent programming on this blog. I’ve had a few emails from concerned readers (and a few viewers) who have expressed their disappointment in what they describe as ‘the trivial nature’ of The Richard Madeley Appreciation Society. Says one reader who calls themselves Gretna Green:
Why do you talk so much trivial rubbish? Are you really Richard Madeley? If you are then you’re really funny but if you’re not then your just a sad man and I won’t be reading you anymore. My advice to you is to look at Iain Dale’s blog, which is the biggest in the country. He knows how to blog. You’ll never get onto his list of the top 1000 UK blogs with your attitude, so grow up Richard. Talk some sense for a change.

‘Trivial rubbish’? I hardly see what’s trivial or rubbish about my life. Do you? Cycling accidents with Bill Bryson, the condition of Bill Oddie’s feet and Jeremy Paxman’s toenails… Only last week, I gave you an exclusive look at the poem I’d written to my darling wife, Judy, and before that I was posting about my holiday to America. I might have upset a polygamists along the way but they can handle it. They’ve certainly got enough shoulders to cry on.

The letter is typical of the hate mail I receive. The single most popular phrase in search engines that bring people here is ‘I hate Richard Madeley’. Another reader writes:

I appreciate what you’re doing Richard, but its [sic] making your TV show look dull. Why can’t you talk about these things on air? I’d love to see you go biking with Bryson. Can’t you make it into a series? It would be fantastic.

And then I get emails such as this one:

Hello Richard. Love your blog. You are the funniest writer in the world and I can’t believe that more people don’t know about your blog. I think it’s the best blog I’ve ever read. I read it every day and I just love love love it! PS. Can I have a job on your show?

Can you now see that I cannot possibly win?

I suppose if there has been a marked decline in the quality of this blog, it has come as a result of my being taken off a few blogrolls. Technorati say that fifteen blogs link to me. That’s pitiful. I don’t know why I bother. But I take insults and praise in my stride. People have a strange relationship to fame which makes them do funny things when they believe they’re in contract with a celebrity. They want to make contact with you, but as soon as they realise that the contact is only limited, they shun you like you’ve caught bluetongue fever.

Is a story inherently funny or is a story only funny if it’s told from the stage by somebody with ‘fame’? Frank Carson is one of the funniest men I’ve ever met. In real life, he’s exactly as you see him on TV. It’s a tragedy. Fame didn’t make him funny. It’s actually a medical condition which means he can only express himself through jokes. The sad truth of it is that the man finds it hard to cope with everyday life. I was saw him in a post office where he needed stamps.

Cashier: ‘Yes sir? Can I help you?’

Carson: ‘A man walks into a post office to buy some stamps.’

Cashier [now smiling]: ‘Yes? Go on…’

Carson: ‘A man walks into a post office to buy some stamps. He says, “I’d like to buy a book of stamps please…”’

Cashier [now laughing]: ‘Happens all the time…’

Carson [now crying]: ‘He says, “I’d like to buy a book of stamps please but I want you to lick them for me…”’

Cashier: ‘…’

Carson: ‘The woman at the counter says, “We can certainly lick them for you, sir, but would you like first class or second class stamps?” The man replies, “it doesn’t really matter just as long as they’re in my pocket and you’ve got a very long tongue.”’

The silence was like a scalpel drawn across the poor man’s confidence. Unable to explain what he wanted, Frank had to make a punch-line up on the spot. Carson was lost without his writers. It was a pitiful sight.

Which is the point of what I’m trying to say. On TV, everything is scripted. Here, I’m being myself. I'll leave it to you to decide which is more real.

Thursday, 27 September 2007

The Pencil in Your Pocket

The Welsh Stripper writes another of his increasingly haphazard posts today and amazingly stumbles across an interesting question which I find myself in rather the unique position of being able to answer. He asks if pitbulls can be forced to open their jaws with a finger/pencil inserted into the hole beneath their tails. An interesting question, though one I believe he has unwittingly stolen from Jasper Carrot who used to talk about the same thing in one of his acts. I happen to remember this tip so well because I have used it on more than one occasion.

You’d be surprised by the number of pitbull terriers that attacked me during my days as a reporter. I’d often go looking to interview some member of criminal classes and found myself staring down the business end of a Doberman. That’s where I honed the skills to render this threat neutral, finding that a good quality HB pencil slots into the hole quite nicely, making it the perfect instrument for dealing with dangerous dogs.

Since I’ve moved into celebrity interviews, I find I don’t need to use the pencil as much as used to, though I always carry one around in my pocket just in case.

It was lucky I did when we interviewed Russell Crowe just after his success on Gladiator back in 2004. He turned up at the studio looking to pick a fight with somebody and I obliged him by getting him confused with TV impressionist Jon Culshaw. It was hardly my fault. I only saw him across the set so I waved and said ‘how you doing Jon?’

Russell was on me in a second and sank his teeth deep into my left thigh. Judy did what Judy does best. She fainted on the spot but I had didn’t have chance to help her. I was too busy reaching for my pencil.

After a few minutes calm was restored and we even managed to film a two minute interview with Russell. When it was all done, we got him to film a few lines to camera to advertise his interview and then we said our goodbyes. Russell was charm personified, signing autographs for everybody in the studio. And then I removed the pencil and he was back to his snarling ways. But it just goes to prove what the Welsh Stripper was asking: yes, the pencil trick does work.

If that fact wasn’t good enough for you, I’ve got some other useful tricks you can use a pencil for. Did you know that if you push it into a shark’s eye socket, you can disarm them? A pencil can be a lethal weapon in the hands of a master. The Japanese martial art of Hapika teaches its devotees to protect themselves with nothing but a pencil. It’s the rarest of the martial arts and doesn’t have coloured belts, having ranks based on a pencil’s hardness. Finally, did you know that the modern pencil was invented in Iceland and remains that country’s major contribution to civilisation?

Wednesday, 26 September 2007

Jeremy Paxman's Toenails

If you've been reading my blog for a while, you might know about my long standing feud with Jeremy Paxman. It all began when a friend of mine who works in the BBC happened to call at Paxman’s house to pick up some scripts for a new show they were planning about the disappearance of British eels. He claims to have seen Jeremy putting his toe nail clippings on a box he keeps above the fireplace. He also said that the box was almost full of the damn things. Of course, my friend told me this in the strictest confidence, which led to my naturally mentioning on air that Jeremy Paxman collects his old toe nail clippings in a box. I couldn’t see much wrong with it at the time. Lots of famous people have had similar collections. Byron used to collect pubic hair and the late Duke of Wellington had the largest ball of earwax in the British Empire.

Only now it turns out that I might have been mistaken. My friend has finally admitted that it was a hoax. I’m sorely disappointed. I like to think I’m a man who enjoys a good joke but hoaxing is beneath me. I’m sorry but I can’t see the humour in leading gullible people on.

This morning, I nipped around to Paxman’s house to offer him my apologies. It was about nine o’clock and Paxo arrived at the door looking a bit the worse for wear.

‘What the hell do you want?’ he grumbled as he picked up his milk bottles from the step.

‘I’ve come to apologise about your toenails,’ I said.

‘Have you now?’ he looked at me as he gave his testicles their first scratch of the day. ‘Well, I suppose you better come in.’

I followed him into Paxman Towers and found myself entering a different day and age. Modern Gothic doesn’t do the place justice. It was like as thought the Norman Conquest was being run by Homebase.

‘You want some coffee?’ asked my host.

‘Not if it’s any bother,’ I said.

‘Bother? Your existence on this planet is bother but I’m making myself one.’

‘Fair enough,’ I said.

Ten minutes later I’m watching Paxman munching his cornflakes.

‘Well?’ he asked, staring into his bowl.

‘Oh, yes, my apology. I just wanted to say that I’m sorry about mentioning your toenails on TV. I now accept that you don’t collect them in a box above the fireplace.’

He looked up, his long face sagging in all the well known places. ‘How do you know I don’t?’ he asked.


He spooned some more cornflakes and looked rather pleased with himself. ‘I said: how do you know I don’t keep my toenails in a box above the fireplace?’

‘Well, that would be crazy, wouldn’t it?’

He shrugged and gave me one of those smiled he normally reserves for Home Secretaries.

‘Listen sonny,’ he said, dropping his spoon. ‘Unlike you, I’m a trained journalist, so I’d check my sources before I run an exclusive. The next time you want to besmirch my name in public, I’d be grateful if you’d check with me beforehand. Now sling your hook, chum, before I give you some of what I gave Michael Howard.’

I was chagrined. I left the kitchen feeling a smaller man. The smaller man was pleased. He’d only dropped in to pick up some scripts. But as I headed to the front door, I gazed into Paxman’s living room and saw a wooden box above the fireplace. I would have checked its contents but I could sense the great man following me and the little man as we headed for the front door.

And that, my dear friends, is why I have only one Paxman fact for you today. Did you know that he collects his toenail clippings and keeps them on a box above his fireplace. It’s the Gospel truth.

Tuesday, 25 September 2007

Bill Oddie's Feet

I notice in today's papers that a fuss is still being made about the supposed scam involving our phone quiz, 'You Say, We Pay'. I think it’s about time I set the record straight. I had nothing to do with it. I washed my hands of the whole business months ago. It was all Judy’s idea. Ask her. Keep me out of it.

Now, I hope that’s put your mind at rest and we can get on with today’s item which is all about herons.

Bill Oddie rang us last week asking if we would go up to Norfolk and sign some plastic herons he’s been auctioning off on behalf of the RSPB. We said we’d be delighted, what with both of us being ornithologically inclined, so at eight o’clock this morning we climbed into the Madeleymobile and headed north to the Twickleton Kesset Bird Sanctuary.

Oddie’s a funny little man who owns more Wellington boots than any person I’ve ever met. You’d think he lives in a world of muddy pits and animal droppings but it doesn't take long in his company before you see that it’s all for show. The Twickleton Kesset Bird Sanctuary was quite lovely with nice clean gravel paths and not a muddy bog to be seen. He met us at the car and walked us around to the pavilion where the heron signing was due to take place. Not once during the whole morning's event did Oddie take his Wellingtons off. He even trod them across carpets and when a sanctuary offical pointed it out he simply showed them his BBC pass and walked on. Like I said: a funny little man.

I tell you all this in the strictest confidence, of course. And it doesn't alter the fact that he's one of the good guys and one of the world's most charming people. The signing session went very well. I must have signed a hundred plastic herons for visitors and Bill gave us a nice thanks at the end. He then asked us if we could do him the enormous favour of driving him back to London. We said it would be a pleasure and we meant it. Bill said his own goodbyes and then he climbed into the back seat of our Range Rover and we were off.

We hadn’t gone a mile before Oddie tapped me on the shoulder.

‘Hang on,’ he said, ‘I’ll just take off me Wellies.’

Now Wellington boots aren’t the best thing for letting your feet breath. In fact, they more likely to give you a spot of trench foot. Even so, I wasn’t prepared for the smell which filled the car. Foot odour is one thing but this was a batch of something mixed by the devil for the ninth circle of hell. Poor Judy. Her eyes were streaming and if it weren’t for my open window, I’d have passed out.

The drive seemed to take hours and for the most of it, Judy seemed to be asleep. She later told me that she'd passed out but I think that's just an exaggeration. We dropped Oddie and his Wellingtons off at his house and drove round the corner where we bailed out and spent ten minutes walking in the fresh air. When we returned to the car, the smell of Oddie’s feet was still pretty rank. Judy said it reminded her of Warwick City Centre but I can’t possibly comment because of my ongoing litigation with that fine town.

Now for some Bill Oddie facts. It strikes me that this is the second day I’ve posted on a Bill, but unlike the saintly Bryson, Oddie has a dark side that extends beyond his feet. Oddie was once a radicalised twitcher, who would launch night raids to install bird boxes in residential areas all over London. He once climbed a lamp post in Downing Street to install an illegal tit basket. Indeed, his nuts can be found all over London, often hanging in net bags in the oddest places. It's Oddie who scaled Nelson's Column to install a nesting box on the back on Nelson's head. He now claims to have calmed down but rumours still persist that Oddie still masterminds the activities of radical twitchers across the nation.

Monday, 24 September 2007

In Tandem With Bryson

Last week I attended at a charity cycle ride around Durham, accompanied on my tandem by the simply adorable Bill Bryson.

Bill agreed to step in at the last minute when Judy fell foul of her troublesome knee which, you all know, has never been right since she ran the London marathon back in 1987. You might say it was a bit of a blessing. Judy can be too competitive at times, whereas Bill was happy to coast merrily along. He’s also a laugh a minute, though this did lead to a few dicey moments when he took his eye off the road. But even when the brakes failed and we were heading for a ditch, Bill still managed to retain his whimsy. ‘There’s nothing like an English hedgerow,’ he said as we weaved between traffic and sped uncontrollable down the hill. ‘It prevents serious accidents as though God himself had planted cushion bushes down every English by-lane’.

A minute later, Bill was picking leaves from his beard while I took a look at the brakes. It’s then that I discovered that somebody had tampered with the locking nut. Bill thought it was just bad luck but I’d earlier eyeballed Des Lynam hanging around the bike racks with a spanner. I told Bill that I wouldn’t stand for it.

‘Nobody tampers with my nuts,’ I said.

But Bill, being Bill, soon managed to calm me down.

‘What would England be if it weren’t for slightly eccentric TV presenters with a compulsion to do evil?’ he asked and I had to admit that he had a point. ‘Come on, Dick,’ he said, patting my on my back. ‘We’ll go and have a pint of cider in a lovely old-fashioned pub and I’ll tell you some stories about my hilarious adventures with Cornish tin miners.’

Which is precisely what I did and why I’ve been hung over for the last week.

So, now I’m back, and how about some bumper Bill Bryson facts? Did you know that Bill is the country’s most popular author, having sold three books to every man, woman, and child? Such is Bill’s success, he’s being held responsible for a forest the size of Glasgow disappearing every day but, to counter this, he personally plants nearly a thousand new trees each week at his own private oak forest outside Birmingham. It there, on weekends, that he dresses in nothing but Loxley green and likes to be called Robin. Less well know is that fact that Bill has the biggest collection of beard-related literature in the world. He also collects vintage wirelesses on which he listens to broadcasts of old 1950s radio. And did you also know that Bill never flies to homeland of America. He works his voyage on merchant ships being a fully trained coxswain and able to hold his breath under water for several minutes.

Monday, 17 September 2007

Song to Judy

'Anonymous' emailed me to say that I don’t talk enough about Judy. I feel suitably chastened, but, at the same time, what is there to say? Judy is my life. There’s no Richard & Judy with the Judy. Actually, there’s no Richard & Judy without the ‘&’ but I don’t go around professing my love for ampersands. However, that's not the point. The email did get me thinking that I don’t give Judy enough credit for our success. That’s why, before breakfast, I wrote her this little ditty which I left on her pillow.

Judy, wake up, and go and make the coffee,
I’m lying here a while, writing you some poetry,
In order to say that you’re really really special,
But not like ‘special needs’; that’s the wrong kind of special.
I mean ‘special’ like Dr. Raj’s furry psycho pants
Not special like the show we did on donkey-sex deviants.
And because you’re special, the show’s special too,
And the next time you flip out, we all know what to do.
So Judy, wake up and go and make the coffee,
Then admit that married to me, you’re so very very lucky.

Judy is far too humble to let the world know how wonderful she is, so I’ll give you some Judy facts so you might appreciate the woman that I feel so blessed to call 'wife'. Did you know that Judy is an expert plasterer and a fully qualified electrician? She's single-handledly built our extension and relaid the drains. Back in our days on Granada Reports, Judy once arm wrestled Muhammed Ali and the outcome was not as one sided as you’d think. And did you know that Frank Bough once proposed to Judy? Imagine how different the world would have been if she’d accepted.

Friday, 14 September 2007


We’re flying home from LAX tomorrow morning, so this the last day of our holiday here in the US of A. We’ve also finally arrived in LA, where we had hoped to get a chance to hang out with many of our old friends who’ve made it big over here. Unfortunately, with all the delays caused by my polygamous marriages in Utah, we now won’t have time, though a few well wishers have sent us parting gifts. We hadn’t been in the hotel five minutes when a big bouquet of flowers arrived from Victoria Beckham. I thought it was a nice touch, though Judy couldn’t appreciate it. She was in the bathroom picking shattered glass from her hair and getting the smell of cordite from her clothes.

You might say that driving in from San Francisco had been an ordeal. Judy gets nervous driving on the right and she made a bad choice on the turnpike and we ended up in South LA. Luckily, the car was a rental so we weren’t liable for all the damage from the gunfire. I didn’t mention to the rental people that I’d smashed out the back window in order to return gunfire with my shotgun. I took out at least two gang members before Judy rammed the oil tanker.

It’s the side of Hollywood you tend to forget. Which is why I think I should end with some real Hollywood facts. Do you know, for instance, that the old Hollywood sign on the Burbank Hills has become so ridden with gunfire in recent years that it’s now been reinforced with Kevlar? And did you know that Hollywood legend Mickey Rooney is a distant relative of Wayne? In the recent hot spell, safety warnings were issued for the Beverly Hills area, telling residents to keep windows open because of the toxic fumes coming from all the plastic surgery reacting to the heat. Although the media covered it up and blamed an arsonist, a forest fire is widely attributed to Jane Fonda’s ear implants combusting in some wild scrub.

Thursday, 13 September 2007

The Right To Arm Bears

Guns. Guns. Guns. America is full of them. I didn’t realise how ubiquitous they were until I found one tucked under my pillow at the hotel. I rang down to the front desk to ask what it was doing there. ‘It’s complimentary, sir,’ said the receptionist. ‘It’s instead of the mint which we find makes the pillows a bit sticky in the warm weather.’

That’s how I found myself in possession of a semi-automatic and three clips of spare ammo. I didn’t know what to do. In the end, Judy suggested that I took it to the local police station. We got there before lunch and I handed in the gun. They told me they were glad to get it off the streets and I felt quite relieved until they gave me a shotgun back as a reward. ‘It’s part of our shotguns for handguns scheme’ said the sheriff. ‘We find that far less crime is committed with a shotgun on account of their being difficult to hide on the human body.’

So now I’ve got a shotgun and a hundred shells. Judy keeps giving me odd looks when I stand naked in front of the bedroom mirror and cock it. She thinks it’s all a bit unnatural. I just say that it’s the only chance in my life I might get to look like Charles Bronson. I don’t think she likes the way I keep saying ‘take that, you son of a bitch’ in a slightly lisping Lithuanian accent but I swear it will come in handy the next time we get an argumentative guest.

I still haven’t made up my mind about the shotgun. I might get rid of it before we leave for LA tomorrow or I might keep it as a souvenir of the holiday. In the meantime, here are some useful shotgun facts for you. Did you know that shotguns are the only type of firearm that haven’t been used in a political assassination yet they account for more artists, writers, and musicians than drugs? The shotgun used by Ernest Hemmingway in his suicide would now be one of the world’s most expensive had its owner not had the teeth marks repaired on the barrel. And did you know that shotguns are the only legal firearm in the UK so long as you’re either a farmer or a Tory?

Wednesday, 12 September 2007

Go Ahead Punk

“If you go to San Fransciso, be sure to wear some flowers in your hair.” Or if you can’t get flowers, try cannabis joints. That’s right. We’re on the West Coast and in the home of hippydom and the mildly confused and schitzophrenic.

Judy and I arrived in the early hours and have been welcomed with open arms by this most laid back of cities. Of course, the chances are that the city isn’t laid back at all, just heavily sedated, but I’m not going to complain after the flight we had. The journey to California turned me white. We hit turbulence somewhere over the Mid-West and Judy filled four sick bags before she was done. I’m normally a good flier but when we plummeted three thousand feet, I muttered a few prayers to the Great One. I don’t know if Michael Grade heard me but the flight levelled out from then on.

Today we’re off to see the Golden Gate Bridge and some cultural landmarks including Alcatraz Island before we drive to Los Angeles in the next day or so. For the moment, have some San Franciso facts. Did you know that the city has more hairdressers than any other place on the planet but not one of them advertise a flower-arranging service for your hair? Tony Bennett’s song, ‘I Left My Heart in San Franciso’, has led to a business in burying hearts for people all over the world and it now has three hearts-only graveyards. Although the Dirty Harry films were filmed in San Franciso, as was the Steve McQueen film, ‘Bullett’, did you know that it actually has few gunfights involving Magnum .44s and last year not a single car chase down the city’s famous tiered streets?

Monday, 10 September 2007

Thank You Very Much...

America. Land of the Free. Home of the Brave. And country of the quickie divorce. Actually, fourteen of them. Then I realised they’d included Judy in the deal so that’s why we’re now in Las Vegas. This morning, we were re-married by a Chinese Elvis Presley impersonator.

I'm just glad to be out of Utah. The holiday was becoming quite the social event. After getting my wives out of jail and ringing the show's producers to cancel the sofa for fifteen, I told the gathered Mrs. Madeleys that I intended to divorce them. They had a few things to say, so I told them a few facts of life. I explained how the wives of Richard Madeley would be under constant press scrutiny. They didn’t seem to mind that, so I told them of the heavy workload they’d be expected to undertake. They didn’t mind that either. So, I told them if they were all that happy with the arrangements as they stood, then we’d go ahead with this polyamous marriage. I got straight onto the phone with the producers to cancel the cancellation for the sofa for fifteen and to find out about the guest list for next season. The words ‘Elton John’s latest’ had barely crossed my lips before all fourteen wives started to demand a divorce. I didn't mind that but I was a bit put out that Judy was the most vocal. She just shrugged and reminded me about her allergic reaction to 'Rocket Man'.

Tomorrow we’re heading out into the desert so I might have some facts about sand lizards and peyote for you then. Today, it’s some little known Elvis facts. Did you know that Elvis was an expert in karate and often practised on any tramps who had accidentally wandered onto his Graceland estate? He once broke the collar bone of his great friend Howard Hughes, who his mistook for a tramp during a night-time walk around the grounds. Hughes was never the same again and became a recluse, with guards stationed 24 hours to protect him from Presley's deadly fingers. Did you also know that Elvis owned many animals? Visitors would often be greeted by a baboon swinging from the chandelier in the hall. When the baboon died, Elvis had it turned into a pair of shoes and often sang about his baboon suede shoes.

Friday, 7 September 2007

The Wisdom of Wynette

I had step in a stop a fight between wives Eight and Fourteen and received a black eye in the process. It wouldn’t have been too bad if it had happened back at the hotel but it occurred at the check-out desk at Salt Lake’s airport. Judy was a model of calm and, as any Wife Number One should, she gave me every encouragement as I dragged Eight off the still kicking figure of Fourteen. I thought I had it sorted out but then the American airport police got involved. Hearing my accent and seeing the colour of my tan, I suppose they immediately thought ‘Saudi’ and had me pinned to the deck. It was a mistake. It set all fourteen of my wives off and what followed is said to have been the biggest riot in Salt Lake history,

The upshot of this is that we’re still in Utah, with half of my wives facing trial and me stuck with their legal bill. In a quiet few moments, Judy took me aside, popped a Tammy Wynette tape into the player, and politely suggested that fourteen wives might be thirteen too many. I’m beginning to see her point. This afternoon, I’m going to hire the best legal team that Channel 4 can afford and see what can be done about divorcing the lot.

D.I.V.O.R.C.E. Tammy not only knew how to spell it but she sang song about it too. All I know is it can be a painful business when you’ve one wife but insufferable with fourteen. Did you know that polygamy explains the odd statistic that suggests that more men get divorced each year than get married? A failed marriage has been proved to be the top reason why men grow mustaches and that 75% of men with facial hair are divorced. Divorcees are also three times more likely to go to Yoga classes, which explains why they are the most flexible sector of the American keep fit market.

Wednesday, 5 September 2007

Richard & Judy's Great American Adventure Part 2

Despite my best laid plans, we’re still in Salt Lake City on account of my nine wives (yes, I’ve married a few more fine Utah women since yesterday) who can’t agree on what to pack for the rest of the holiday. I’m beginning to see the down side to this polygamy, one being the number of hotel rooms I’ve been trying to book at our next stop out in California. Angela (she’s my eighth wife) mentioned that she has relatives out there so we’re going to see if they have room for us but it might be the case that I’ll have to spend the rest of my holiday with wives spread out all about all over the city. As for Judy (you might remember her as my first wife, though I’m already finding it terribly easy to lose her in the crush), she’s coping quite well and I think she’s enjoying having some other women to chat to about my many (supposed) deficiencies.

Oh, now wife number four is calling me. That’s either Kerry or Tabitha. But before I go, I have more Utah facts for you. Did you know that Utah is owned by the Osmonds? They’re big in the local council and each have special responsibilities. Donny is in charge of local sanitation department and we’ve already spotted him climbing out of the drains. Marie runs the police, we I discovered when she pulled us over this morning in her role as deputy sheriff. She wanted to be sure our marriage licenses were in order which, in this country, you have to carry with you at all times. Anybody found without a valid marriage license will be escorted to the local church and issued with one, whether they have a wife or not. Finally, did you know that Utah sits on the largest natural deposit of salt in the world, yet the locals boast of having the lowest blood pressure in the whole of the United States?

Richard & Judy's Great American Adventure Part 1

We landed in America in the early hours yesterday and took another plane straight over to Salt Lake City, here in Utah, where we’ll be staying for a night or two. I thought it would be a different kind of holiday, travelling across America, but now I’m here, I don’t want to move on. Utah is my kind of town with my kind of people. I’ve done so much since I got here that I doubt if you’d recognise me.

Judy isn’t too impressed but she wasn’t that excited when I told her that I was becoming a Mormon. The Richard & Judy & Ruth & Tabitha & Kerry & Rachael & Mary Show perhaps doesn’t have the same ring to it but I say that we should bother about how it looks in the TV listings when a man is sticking to his religious principals. The girls are all lovely and I hope you’ll get to know them (and the few more I hope to marry before I leave) when we have the super-wide sofa installed in the studio. I don’t know what the TV chiefs will make of it but I think Judy is resigned to the fact that we’ll be able to introduce a rotation policy, with Judy only presenting one show in seven or eight.

Polygamy has got a bad name to people who don’t understand it. They think it demeans the woman because the relationship is usually one man to many women. But I say what better way is there of celebrating womanhood than by allowing six women to be married to a man like me? In fact, there are some polygamy facts which some people don’t want you to know about. Did you know, for example, that polygamy is illegal in the UK except in Kent where it is protected by bylaws? Did you also know that the first evidence of polygamy was found by antropologists researching the earliest civilization in Africa? They posit that primitive pigmy polygamy began with a progenitor practising polymorphous perversity but I don’t think it’s as simple as that.

Tuesday, 4 September 2007

The Oddly Shaped Richard

You find me in something of an adults-only mood, today, and I suggest those of you who of a sensitive nature might like to turn away now. I’m moving straight into XXX rated material.

Have the innocents gone? Good. The rest of us can tackle (if you’ll excuse the pun) the more touchy subject of the male member. That’s right. Today I want to talk about balls, nuts, bollocks, dicks, penises, one eyed monsters, knobs, trouser snakes, willies, and what is euphemistically known in the Madeley household as ‘the butter monster’.

I wouldn’t normally write about this kind of thing but I’ve become frustrated by the number of taboo subjects that we’re not allowed to discuss at 5pm, even on Channel 4. First they wouldn’t allow me to raise the subject of those poor men born with less than seventeen inches and now they won’t let me mention Nani’s oddly shaped manhood.

If you don’t know the story or the lead characters, I can only direct you to the News of the World where you’ll be guided through the full tale in the company of the delightful Tyese and Gemma (above) who in no way resemble a pair of whores with faces like heavily made-up house bricks.

For those of you who prefer to skip the nasty detail, the story recounts the pleasant evening enjoyed by Manchester United footballer and last year’s Footballer of the Year, Christian Ronaldo, and two of his team mates, Nani and Anderson, along with some Leeds prostitutes. I read about the business in the car on the way to the studio on Monday and told Judy of my dismay that there had’d been more of a public outcry about the revelations. Only a year or so ago, Ronaldo was advertising the Suzuki Swift, the economical supermini. Now he's into escorts, and not of the type build by Ford, though looking at Tyese and Gemma, I'm not so sure...

I wondered about the declining state of morals in this country and my own rather old fashioned attitude towards three men, two women, a jacuzzi, and the sexual demands of a fat limo driver. I care not a jot about what consenting adults get up to in the privacy of their own homes but this whole business sounds less like love making and more like monkeys getting horney in Whipsnade Safari Park.

Clearly, I’m a bit out of touch with modern morals and can't help but feel that the whole thing raises so many questions.

Tyese and Gemma complain that they weren’t treated with any respect. It has to be one of the oddest complaints by women who admit to having a credit card machine in one of their handbags. In fact, the more you read about it, the more this mound of writhing Premiership stars and Yorkshire hookers begins to resemble a Fisher Price Activity set. The only thing missing is a bell and the thing that squeezes playdough into funny shapes. Or perhaps that brings us back to the state of Nani’s oddly shaped knob.

What exactly do the girls mean when they say it was oddly shaped? I’d say it was oddly shaped if it looked like a telephone or a giraffe. Perhaps he’s done too many back flips and it’s tied itself into a knot. Or even funnier still is if it looks like Alex Ferguson. Without the detail, we can only speculate. Perhaps it’s the same shape of the Premiership Trophy.

And what kind of company can advertise itself as an ‘escort service’ while really running a prostitution racket? The answer is: a clever one. The company is sure to do plenty of business now that The Times and the News of the World have advertised it the nation. But this is how the company itself describe their service.

‘McKenzies model escorts also make ideal companions for dinner dates, afternoons sampling the delights of Manchester's many art galleries and exhibition spaces, or evenings at an award-winning production in one of Manchester's many impressive theatres.’

Are they being serious? Are there men out there who pay a woman £200 an hour just to walk around an art gallery? Do you think that either Tyese and Gemma know a thing about L.S. Lowry? I hate to leap to judgements but I really doubt they know oil paint unless they were asked to frolic naked in the stuff.

In order to calm myself down, how about some facts about penises? I’m sure you know that the most oddly shaped penis in the animal kingdom belongs to the pig which is actually shaped like a corkscrew. But did you know that it’s actually possible to take a cork out of a bottle with a pig’s penis? It’s true, though I wouldn’t advise you to try the wine. In certain Aboriginal tribes, the slicing the penis is considered a rite of passage but did you know that it also brings with it free tickets to one of nineteen different theme parks across Australia? Finally, do you know that the silly old rumour about Hitler having only had one testicle was disproved by the Russians who still keep all three of them pickled in a bottle in Moscow.

Monday, 3 September 2007


I spent the weekend doing a modeling gig for GQ Magazine. Can’t say I was that impressed by the photographer. I didn’t mind taking off my shirt for the shoot but I wasn’t sure that being totally covered in horseradish is how I like the public to see me. It’s why I’m in a rush today. I’ve had a terrible reaction and my skin has begun to blister. I’m off to see this guy that Dr. Raj (or I should say, Professor Raj) has recommended. I only hope I can get there before I shed my nipples and half my right shoulder.

So, some quick facts about skin before I go. Did you know that 95% of all dust is made from human skin and that the other 5% is dried toenail? Skin is not actually pink but pale blue but the light reacts with blood vessels and gives it a reddish colour. In Hollywood, so much skin is removed during plastic surgery that there’s a special dump north of Beverly Hills were it’s buried. The Joan River’s Memorial Earlobe Gardens were opened on the site last year as part of a scheme to help the pit blend in with the local environment. Rumours that Leslie Nielsen's jowls have begun to reproduce have been strongly denied.