Simon Says - SkinnyFest 1

Feature by Simon Munnery | 14 Aug 2006
There are so many geniuses in town at the moment; they should have a parade. This was Sean Lock's idea many moons ago: he imagined them lolloping down Princes Street, each using his own unique mode of genius transport – seven-wheeled buggies, steam-powered mechanical horses, electric spider-cars, rockets, big springs on the feet, et cetera. I ponder the origin of the word genius; is it anything to do with genie? Can you get it from a bottle?

It is said that genius is one per cent inspiration and 99 per cent perspiration. That would make them rather sweaty and presumably unattractive. Geniuses tend to be male. "He's a genius" has a different ring to it than "She's a genius" – to which one might respond: "oh, poor thing, she'll not find a husband..." - because genius means other, outside of the normal. In that sense it's almost an insult – but not a terrible insult like, "You suck Alsatian cum through a straw", or something. You rarely hear it used during bar-room brawls – "I'll tell you what you are, pal, you're a bloody genius, now step outside and let's settle this like intellectuals." That doesn't happen, except perhaps in parts of Stockbridge.

No smoking in bars. That takes some getting used to. Not only that but they wouldn't let me have a drink in the tobacconists. Whatever next? No javelin-throwing at the opera? No haggling in the supermarket? No defecating in the library? I shall soon be running out of venues for my vices. But back to genius; given the perspiration involved, perhaps what it really means is servant - or slave - to an idea. And perhaps that is why certain ladies find geniuses attractive; they want to be the idea.

[Simon Munnery]
Simon Munnery's AGM, The Stand Comedy Club, until August 28 (not 14), 16:20, £8 (£7).