John Stuart Mill of his own free will

At last! The Podcast 165 Show! Although we threatened the end the podcast last week, we decided to keep it going for one more week, as Andrew was coming round to Richard’s anyway before they went off to see Jerry Seinfeld at the O2 Arena in London and they had some time to kill. On a swelteringly hot day, in order to get through one more podcast, Andrew was forced to drink some pinot grigio blush beforehand, and a single 4% proof American beer during, while Richard didn’t. The highlights are forensically well-remembered Monty Python sketches and songs, which may baffle our younger listeners, but which will transport people in their forties and fifties to a happier time for British comedy when stand-ups did not earn £4 million a year, just like Russell Howard doesn’t now. This podcast also stands as a tribute-cum-warning to national treasure Stewart “Wart” Lee. If you were in Mrs Markilee’s class at Cobden Junior School in Loughborough circa 1975 and recognise yourself in this photograph, do get in touch! Let’s hope Seinfeld is on more disciplined comedic form. Altogether now: Immanuel Kant was a real pissant, he was very rarely etc. etc.

And here’s the photo flipped round. (It’s the first photo taken with Photo Booth on Andrew’s new MacBook, about which you will hear on the podcast.)

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Coppola

It’s Podcast 164, which shall be called Podcast 165, because we can’t count. No, it is 164. It is. Because the last one was 163, which is the number that comes before it. The question is: will it be the LAST EVER Collings & Herrin Podcast? The two double espressos inside Richard’s system certainly did their best to make it so, as did the combined force of three machines of loving grace: the Tascam DR-100 which refused to reformat itself in time for us to use it, and was still reformatting when we’d finished, and our two Macs (Richard’s GarageBand broke down, and so did Andrew’s, at different points, and for different reasons, except it was the same reason, which is: The Terminator is coming true). Anyway, Ryan Giggs, Imogen Thomas, Art Blakey, Barack Obama, Benedict Cumberbatch, Rufus Hound … these are some of the people we talk about. But only one of them is a magic pixie. Find out who by listening to what may be the longest podcast we’ve ever done. But it may be our last. So. This podcast was not sponsored by Paddy Power.

Pen is

Bonus! In the latest of our free, Richard-is-on-tour, back-up, pre-recorded podcasts from the past for the future, we reach 155, a non-topical game of two halves. In the first half, we have a chin-stroking, Newsnight Review-style discussion of American comedy, from Larry Sanders and Zack Garofolo (as we call him, for convenience) to Fat Bastard and Kenny Powers. Then, in the second half, we take subjects from Twitter suggestions, and end up talking about cleaning anuses and watching slow motion footage of birds having practical, procreative sex. And for lovers of pens, here is a picture of all of the pens (and one IKEA pencil) from the small pocket in Andrew’s man bag.

Quinlank’s Illustrated Directory of Film Comedy Stars

While Richard is away on tour, braving the threats and prayers of Christians who’ve seen his poster, we present a special, non-topical, “pre-recorded” Podcast 153, based upon the one-word themes suggested by the nerds of Twitter two weeks ago. The words that inspired and stumped us include:

revolution

fish

robots

liberation

ennui

boobs

nostalgia

schadenfreude

weddings

proxyglossaryisis

dreams

hedgehog

blue

Olympian

lactose

… to varying degrees of light entertainment. We also unveil Andrew’s First Theorum Of The Initial Letter B. Plus, for Fist Of Fun fans, we hold up the very book that gave Simon Quinlank his name.

Three per household

Richard is officially on tour of this land, ergo we enter a tricky period in the Collings & Herrin podcasting calendar, and will get together whenever we can. However, we will be recording two for every one, so that “spares” will be in the tank and ready to release in our dual absence. We’re really not sure you deserve it. Anyhow. In Podcast 151, fuelled in Richard’s case by a variety of different caffeine sources, we celebrate the Royal Engagement Gold Plated Photographic Coin, available for £39.99 +£3.99 postage and packaging but only three per household, the impression of a bloated spider being pulled off currently by Colonel Gadaffi, the suicide of Masterchef, the sexual allure of Russell Kane in a dress and its significance towards a utopian future in which all men and ladies have the same equipment, and we mark the sad passing of Brigadier Letherbridge Stewart off of Doctor Who (1969-1989). Also, do you, like Peet Clack, think Andrew looks like this Muppet?

Hi, my name is Larry

Richard’s back from Maldives International with some colour in his cheeks, a whiff of seafood curry about his pores and some exciting seabird knowledge, Andrew’s back from Braintree Freeport railway station with far too much information about David Cameron’s Big Society, two new 6 Music boyfriends and a Radio 4 casting-couch pass, and we’re back in the attic for Podcast 150, a good-natured catch-up after two weeks’ break from each other in which we discuss the malleable nature of xenophobia, the etiquette of squirting lagoon water out of your mouth while honeymoon couples are eating nearby and the sweetness of Larry the Downing Street cat. It goes a bit weird at one point, but we rise above it, despite jetlag. [WARNING: CONTAINS SONG!]

We love 2006

Bonus! Another one! Even though Richard is still in the Maldives, or an adjacent morgue, wearing a Sombrero or whatever people wear in the Maldives, here is another bonus podcast, this time with an historic and even archeological twist. Think back to the end of 2006, when podcasts were still a new-fangled invention, and Andrew had his own weekend show on 6 Music, on which Richard appeared each week as a guest, for half an hour. This is the “pretend podcast” version of one of those guest appearances, badly mixed in Richard’s favour, and full of bonhomie and reverence. We hope you enjoy this memento and that it makes you feel that you have turned back time. (Eagle-eyed nerds will spot that the accompanying pic is from early 2007, but it’s close enough.) You don’t deserve us.

Belt up

Bonus! Even though Richard is mainlining pina collada with an umbrella made of existential disappointment stuck in the top in the Maldives with his imaginary girlfriend, we bring you Podcast 149, which was recorded (contrary to what we say in the intro) on October 29, 2010, in Richard’s VW Golf on the Eastbound M4 from Bristol to London. We hope you enjoy it, and especially the names on the sides of lorries that Andrew feels the Rain Man-style need to read out. There’s a very exciting bit where Richard has to stop to fill up the car with petrol. Another bonus podcast next week, even though Richard will still be in the Maldives, drowning in pina and collada.

What women want: panda hats

Recorded in a carefully constructed television set designed to look like the post-apocalyptic attic flat of a sad, lonely old man who collects defunct electrical equipment, Podcast 148 – the closest you’ll get to our THIRD BIRTHDAY PODCAST!!!! HAPPY BIRTHDAY TO US!!! – is our subtle counterpoint to the Andy Gray/Richard Keys/hairy-handed sexism scandal: an hour-long tribute to women linesmen everywhere, and their basic human right to seek a “vagazzle” and have Premiership footballers “hanging out the back of of it.” You’ll have to listen to it to appreciate the full extent of our political correctness. (It was dark when we took the photograph, which is why it looks as grimy and grainy as Black Swan.)