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Terry Butcher: Ask A Silly Question

Hello Terry. FourFourTwo here...
Hello there.

Ever smashed a door with your head?
No, but I have with my elbows. I wouldn’t try it with my head – too painful.

How many doors have you kicked in?
How long’s a piece of string? It doesn’t hurt if you put your full force behind it. I always offer to pay afterwards, but they say it’s no bother.

Well, you’re a big lad...
That probably helps. I once put my foot through a wall at West Ham, only I went through all the way up to the top of my thigh and got stuck. It took me ages to get out. It was a bit embarrassing, really.

If you owned a butcher’s shop, what would you call it?
It would have to be ‘Butcher’s’, wouldn’t it?

‘Butcher’s Butcher’s’? Yeah, that works...
I was actually a butcher boy when I was at school, working weekends. I had to clean up the blood and gore. But I got free sausages!

Super. Cheese or chocolate?
Ooh, now that’s a good question.

Thanks. Didn’t do three years at Journalism School for nothing...
It certainly paid off. I like cheese... Dolcelatte.

Cheese it is, then?
Not so fast. I like cheese but I love chocolate.

What about a cheese-flavoured chocolate?
Don’t be silly. That wouldn’t work.

Right you are. Ever knocked a man out?
No... [thinking hard]... I don’t think so.

Ever been sick in a hedge?
No, I normally make it to a toilet.

Ever been sick on your shoes?
Er... er... No, I don’t think I have.

When did you last wear women’s clothes?
I’ve never worn women’s clothes!

Are you sure?
Women’s clothes? [Laughs] Absolutely not!

Can you dance?
Absolutely, providing I’ve got a bottle of wine inside me. I tend to dance like a geriatric. It’s an impressive sight.

I’ll bet. Could you drown a bag of puppies for money?
Drown puppies? No!

There’s £20 in it for you...
No, never.


£1.5 million?
Absolutely not. I love puppies.

Do you love them enough to eat one barbecued?
[Sounding genuinely distraught] No, and if anybody offered me one I’d eat them.

Erm... When did you first break the law?
Let me think. I had my first drink when I was 15, so 1973. A pint of Carlsberg Special Brew.

Turbo Tin!
Yeah, it was a bit feisty. I had two cans then went out and vomited on the beach.

What’s your favourite swearword?
[Thinking]... Good question again... I would probably say... T**t.

Good choice, Terry.
Actually, can I have ‘f***ing t**t’?

Super swearing. What was the first thing you ever shoplifted?
Probably a Mars bar. I was coming back from a school game and we stopped at a shop. There was nobody behind the counter so I just thought I’d take it and go.

You didn’t think about leaving the cash on the counter?
I did for a minute, yes, but they say never look a gift horse in the mouth.

Have you ever seen a gift horse?
No. Maybe that’s why they say never.

Ever fancied Morris dancing?
I’ve never seen Morris dance [laughs].

Ah, we’re really cooking now, Tel!
Yes, we are. I’ve never fancied Morris dancing, though. I prefer that other English pastime of going down the pub and having a pint.

From a flagon? Don’t answer – the bottom of the page is coming. Any final words?
Er, well, it’s been different... Actually, I’ve just remembered, I was once sick in a hat.

Your own hat?
Yes, in my pork pie hat. We went on a school trip to France and I drank a bottle of rum...

Did you fill it to the brim?
Up to the brim and over. It didn’t hold much.

Did you put it back on?
Oh no, I had to throw it away. 

Interview: Nick Harper. From the November 2005 issue of FourFourTwo.