One random comedian, eight random questions; it's the ultimate test of funny person and fate.
Instead of one random comedian, though, this week we have a couple of random commentators - Tony and John, whose poignant lockdown phone chats have been intercepted and turned into a podcast by two moonlighting comedy types: Ed Eales-White and Will Hartley (who previously teamed up in the fine sketch group Clever Peter).
In fact, they've even recorded this Random 8 interview, and have podcasted a specially extended version, right here [link below]. Absolutely extraordinary, as Motty would say.
So, John and Tony, Who Are Ya? And how did these chats come about?
John: We've been missing football and it's nice to hear each other's voices.
Tony: Yes, I mean, I miss football and I miss you and this fills half of that gap.
John: We're football commentators, we've been working together for over 20 years.
Tony: Yes, two decades.
John: Two decades, four half-decades.
Tony: Yes, eight, er, eighths... of a decade. I've never been strong at maths, John.
John: No, I remember when you miscounted the number of players on the pitch once.
Tony: Gosh, yes, I thought there were 34 of them. 'WHY DOESN'T THE REF STOP IT?' I thought.
Those podcasts are available here, which includes the chat below if you prefer ears to eyes, input-wise. Tony and John, your Random 8 await.
What was your childhood career dream?
Tony: I did want to be a policeman. I'd like to be shot in the line of duty and be brought back as some kind of robocop.
John: Is this because you saw Robocop as a child?
Tony: Yes, I thought 'oh gosh that'd be good,' but I wouldn't want to do it in Detroit, I'd want to do it Hertfordshire or maybe Wiltshire. I could see Robocop's life being slightly easier.
Who's the most interesting person you've ever met?
Tony: It has to be Dirk Kuyt. Ex Netherlands, Ajax and Liverpool. He used to make jigsaws out of discarded bubble-gum wrappers and he'd sell them and all the proceeds went to a homeless charity in the Netherlands. Very artistic, interesting pastoral scenes, shepherds, sheep and goats.
John: Still keep in touch with him?
Tony: Very much so. We try and have a weekly chat, done a couple of Zooms, but he's not very good with technology because he's got such big thumbs.
Ever walked out of a film?
Tony: Yes, I suffer from a mild form of cine-nausea, I'm sick if I see moving images on a big screen for too long.
John: You've kept that quiet Tony.
Tony: The last time I went to the cinema was Babe.
John: ...Pig in the City?
Tony: No the first one. The Sheep Pig. I only lasted five minutes.
John: Shame. I've never walked out of a film, even if it's awful, I've paid for a ticket and now I'm going to be delighted or punished by my decision.
What's your favourite phrase or expression?
Tony: It has to be 'Oh there he goes'.
John: You've used that a lot with quick players, like Sadio Mane.
Tony: It's very useful, that's why I like it.
John: Mine's 'turned on a sixpence'. I used that a lot with Zola.
Tony: I also like 'woke up on the wrong side of the bed'. Often said that about Didier Drogba. Whose bed has he woken up in? What was the bed like? How many sides has it got? Is it a waterbed?
John: Let's not go down that tunnel again Tony.
Your most interesting injury?
Tony: When I was fifteen my patella fell off when I was running for the L Train in Chicago. Kneecap just popped straight off.
John: Sounds awful. Mine was when I managed to sprain my ankle in 2007 during commentary. I was in a lot of pain. I took my anger out on the players didn't I?
Tony: You really were turning the air blue. I felt physically sick.
John: And I apologise again. I've apologised many times. Some of those things I myself didn't think I was capable of saying.
What's the worst thing you've ever bought?
Tony: Once upon a time, I made a deal with a fella in Nicaragua to ship me a couple of pumas, paid him in cash, gave me a good deal but they never turned up. So actually I didn't buy them, I just gave a man some money and he didn't give me some pumas.
John: Mine would be an escort that caused me a lot of trouble. The negatives outweighed the positives.
Do you have a good hangover cure?
Tony: I'd say four rounds of golf with Rod Stewart.
John: You play a lot don't you. Who wins? He's a lot older than you?
Tony: I'm not a natural, and Rod's got a very smooth action and his long-range putting is exquisite.
John: Mine is football commentating. As soon as the lads come out the tunnel, and you're next to me, I've completing forgotten I was being sick in the car park half an hour ago.
Tony: You really are a stone-cold pro. The only time I know you're hungover is when you give me a squeeze of the hand. Clammy.
John: In that little moment, I'm feeling incredible anxiety, there's absolutely no way I can say a word and then, the referee's whistle... "you join us here today ladies and gentlemen." It just happens.
Who are you most envious of?
John: Ryan Giggs. Wonderful career, watching a young Giggs was like watching a young gazelle, or a salmon.
Tony: Wriggly, slippery and pink.