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I'M SORRY I HAVEN'T A CLUE
games compendium

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a

ad lib poem
The Chairman gives the first line of a poem. Each panellist then has to continue the poem until the chairman hoots his horn, when the next panellist takes over.

adages and aphorisms
This round celebrates some of our language’s best known adages and time honoured aphorisms. The teams are asked to suggest updated versions of various well known English proverbs and sayings in an effort to make them more relevant to life in the 21st century. As we know everything can be reworked and improved as Bruce Willis Found out in his recent Welsh action film Hard Dai with a Vengeance.

advertising slogans
Some ads were destined never to catch the public imagination, and the jingle employed by Quillies throat lozenges were the prime example:

When your throat is dry and sore,
Go down to your Chemist store.
Don’t you all be silly billies,
Get fast relief when you suck Quillies.

Not all TV adverts are a waste of good cathode rays. The Chairman has a selection of classic advertising slogans and provides the first part of them for the teams to complete.

agony aunts
The undisputed queen of the Agony Aunts must surely be Claire Raynor, who has sent us one of her answers to a genuine embarrassing problem. To preserve anonymity we’ll call the writer Mr. X.

Claire responds:

Dear Barry X of Hatch End,
No luvvy I don’t think you are suffering from Tourette’s Syndrome, but in the unlikely event you are invited back again to speak to the ladies of the Cunningham Hunt try not to drink 14 pints of lager first.

Inspired by Claire’s efforts, the game is test of the teams skill at Agony Aunting. The Chairman provides a selection of actual answers to readers letters and the teams have to use their counselling judgement to imagine what the real inquiry might have been.

ancient radio times
The teams are asked to provide titles of TV and Radio programmes likely to have been listed inside the special Ancient Greek edition of the Radio Times.

animal farm
This is played in tribute to Orwell’s novel of farm animals, whose philosophy is summarised as “four legs good, two legs bad.” (It’s a phrase which might prove a useful work ethic for whoever it was who packed my new self-assembly B&Q kitchen table.)

In this version of Animal Farm each team will tell an animal related story, while the other will be required to provide the appropriate sound effect. Graeme Garden’s team should be quite good at this as he is an expert at doing farm impressions, and offered Barry Cryer some coaching. So the other evening Barry went round to Graeme’s house in the country, and Graeme shot him in the back.

anniversary headlines
This year marks several important anniversaries. It is 100 years since the terrible sinking of the Titanic, 75 years since the Hindenburg disaster, and 45 years since the start of Just A Minute. But there is also another anniversary as it is 40 years since the first edition of I’m Sorry I Haven’t a Clue. What did the world look like in 1972? One way is to look at the newspapers back then. Another is too look at what Tim and Barry are wearing today. The Chairman has been provided with the first part of newspaper headlines taken from the day of the first transmission, 11th April 1972, which the teams are asked to complete.

answerphones
The task in this game is to try to identify famous people merely by hearing the messages left on their machines by various callers.

any answers
This is just the kind of public service broadcasting we should expect of this channel. Radio 4 is very much part of the chairman’s daily routine. Each morning he wakes up, turns on the Today programme, has a shave, listens to James Naughtie ask a question - has another shave. By the way, while this game is called Any Answers it shouldn’t be confused with the Radio 4 phone in programme of the same name which follows Any Questions which provides a free and open forum to air a wide range of bigotry.

any questions
The chairman has a selection of questions sent by loyal listeners, and one by a disloyal listener to which the answer is “Yeah, and whose army?” You would think President Ahmadinejad would have better things to do with his time wouldn’t you. The teams have to solve some knotty problems.

archers
A tribute to the Archers, the everyday story of country folk. I have to admit I am no expert on the countryside and I suspect most of us would not know an Ash tree if it fell on us. According to the show’s web site some strange things have happened since it started in 1951. For example on various occasions during rehearsals the studio has both been flooded and struck by lightning, and three actors have given birth there. That’s incredible, they have rehearsals. The teams are going to improvise a cheaper spin-off version of the Archers. They have been provided with a box of sound effects to play in themselves, and the cast list is as follows: Tim is Brian Aldridge, Barry is Jazza, Graeme will be play Joe Grundy, and Victoria will play Clary … Linda, Peggy, Elizabeth, Susan, Shula, Jill, Lillian, Ruth, Jennifer, and Usha.

ask a silly question
The teams suggest ludicrous questions which no one in their right mind would ever think of to ask.

audience ratings
The teams are asked to make additions to TV and Radio programmes likely to make them more popular.

ay up spy
As a child the Chairman’s family often used to enjoy a game of battleships, and became so skilled they even played in international matches, once meeting the German team in the European Under 15s Cup Final - what a glorious day that was at Scapa Flo. However, in another field, shame was brought upon his family when Grand Mama was disqualified for cheating after she became All England Blinking Champion. Having not blinked for the entire 3 hours of the tournament, the judges discovered she had been in flagrant breach of the rules by dieing in her chair just before it started. For this round, the teams have devised a special Yorkshire version of Eye Spy. The teams are asked to take turns to spy things commonly spotted in Yorkshire.

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