“Would I Lie To You?” – Night in a bush

British comedy game show “Would I LIe To You?” features celebrities, mostly comedians, who have to tell lies and recognise lies. The first contestant has to read what is on the card. This may be fictional, invented by the TV show’s staff, or in fact true, as told by the reader earlier to the staff. The reader of the card doesn’t know what is on the card beforehand, but they have to make a balance of believable and unbelievable. The opposing team have to decide if the story is true or false. By the way, Basingstoke (mentioned) is my hometown.

James Acaster: I once spent the night in a bush in Basingstoke.
Rob Brydon: David’s team…
Melvin Odoom: That’s so true!
Fay Ripley: Yes. I mean definitely!
David Mitchell: Why were you spending the night in a bush in Basingstoke?
JA: I missed my train.
DM: Where do you live?
JA: Well, at the time I lived in Ketteringham in Northamptonshire, “Rose of the Shires”.
DM: Right. Why didn’t you go to a luxury hotel?
JA: Well, David, at the time I had no money in my wallet at all, and my phone was dead. I had no way of contacting anyone.
DM: That’s certainly adds up!
MO: Why a bush? Why not a bench or like somewhere warmer than a bush?
Lee Mack: Is a bench warmer than a bush? I would have thought a bench was definitely colder than a bush; it’s more exposed.
JA: There’s an old say – “You’re warmer in a bush than on a bench.”
DM: So where was the bush? Paint the picture of the local area.
JA: It was right outside of the train station, and there was a little pick-up point for taxis and stuff, and it went down a little bit to the road, and right in front of the road just a load of bushes.
DM: So you didn’t look for a long time for a particularly comfy spot?
JA: I’ll level with you David, the amount of time it took me to decide to sleep in the bush was embarrassingly short.
DM: Right. Was it? Now, that does surprise me. It was a quick decision. You’ve missed your train and you go “Right! That’s it!” and you immediately… like 14 seconds later you’re snoring.
JA: Well I actually didn’t get to sleep. It was scary. I was freezing, actually, even though the bush… it was a nice roomy bush…
DM: Can you remember the shape of the leaves?
JA: It was like small, little, Basingstoke leaves.
DM: Individual leaves?
JA: Yes.
DM: Variegated?
JA: Ok, you have to explain what that word means.
DM: It means there’s sort of, erm, there’s a sort of white bit on the outside, I think.
JA: I wasn’t paying attention to the leaves; I have bigger problems at the time. I wasn’t sitting in the bush going, “One day I may have to justify this entire experience o Would I LIe To You? I’d better memorize the leaves, and whether they’re gentrified”, or whatever you said.
RB: So James, you’ve settled down in the bush and you’re lying there but it’s cold.
JA: Oh, I’m sitting there.
RB: Sitting in the bush?
JA: Sitting in the bush, cross-legged and cold. I had a T-shirt on.
DM: How were you going to go to sleep sitting?
JA: I was scared!
FR: What were you scared of?
JA: It was Friday night in Basingstoke; there were hoodlums around.
RB: All you had on was a T-shirt.
JA: And jeans.
RB: And jeans, of course.
JA: Yes.
MO: I still feel like the bench is warmer.
RB: So, did anyone hear you in the bush and come and investigate?
JA: At one point they did. At one point some hoodlums stopped outside the bush. They said, “You know what we haven’t done in a while? We haven’t… we haven’t beaten someone up in a while. That’s how they speak, David. Bullies speak like that to each other, and I was in the bush, and at that time I was wearing a red dress.
RB: What did you say? What?
JA: I was wearing a dress by now.
RB: Why? You said you were in a T-shirt.
JA: Originally I was in a T-shirt and then I had to put a dress on.
DM: Why did you put a dress on?
JA: I was cold!
RB: Where did you get the dress from?
JA: I had it in a bag.
FR: Why?
JA: I was… I was making a short film, and I had to buy the wardrobe for the cast.
RB: You’re in the bush, the hoodlums have moved on, they didn’t beat you up…
JA: I tricked them, I put the bag over my head.
RB: You seriously put the bag over your head.
JA: Yeah. Put yourself in my shoes. They’re saying they wanna beat someone up. If they look down and see me wearing a dress it’ll be like Christmas. So, I put the bag over my head, and now if they look down they’ll think “Someone’s left a bag and a dismembered body in a bush.
FR: Hang on.
RB: People at home – don’t put bags over your head.
JA: Oh, yeah.
MO: Let’s go back to the temperature of this bush now… You said you went into the dress for warmth, but surely the jeans and T-shirt were warmer than a dress. There’s a lot of ventilation.
DM: I think… I don’t think he took the jeans and T-shirt off!
MO: Oh, it was double.
RB: He didn’t slip out ofthe jeans and T-shirt, fold them up nicely, at the time, and then get the dress and put it on and go, “Oh, I look wonderful!” He wasn’t doing that.
MO: Oh, right.
DM: By the end of the night he’s wearing the jeans, the T-shirt, the dress and the bag.
JA: May I just say, it’s lucky this happen to Melvin because if so, he’d have been on a bench wearing a dress and nothing else!
RB: Let’s go for a guess. Is he telling the truth? Melvin, what do you think?
MO: I think, looking at James I believe that he could put on a dress with a bag over his jeans and T-shirt, but a man that picks a bush over a bench I can’t trust. So, on that basis it’s a lie.
FR: I’ve got to absolutely say it’s true. I believe in every element really.
DM<: I'm gonna go "true". RB: True, you're saying "true", right. James, was it true or was it a lie? JA: It's true!