For years I have wanted to put together a list of the best of Nancy Banks-Smith, who has been making me laugh since she started writing on telly for the old Sun, in 1965. She moved to the Guardian in 1969 and is still writing for it occasionally, as all fans will know. Would love to hear from any who have made a collection of quotes.
In the course of tidying up my files into this blog, I found a couple of my favourites and did a quick Google for some more. Surprisingly, it appears that even The Guardian has never done a comprehensive anthology and all quotes collections seem to have the same few …
* “Anthropology is the science which tells us that people are the same the whole world over – except when they are different.”
* “In my experience, if you have to keep the lavatory door shut by extending your left leg, it’s modern architecture.”
* “Agatha Christie has given more pleasure in bed than any other woman.”
* “You carry forever the fingerprint that comes from being under someone’s thumb.”
I have some still to unearth and found this one, on Bet Lynch, from Gdn 15..6.02:
“As if summoned by a conjurer, Bet materialised in a puff of cigarette smoke. She was the Rovers’ brassiest barmaid. In your misty mind’s eye you can see her behind the bar, looking like a Knickerbocker Glory with no knickers. She lowered the tone of the place with a bump that loosened your back teeth.”

And I recall, from memory, a summary of Australia as portrayed in, I think, The Thorn Birds …
“Much as you imagined it – miles and miles of bugger all with the occasional mad bastard.”

I am grateful to David Hepworth, who has a blog of his own, which I must check out –
for a Nancy review of The Apprentice in 2008 …
This year’s crop are not crippled by false modesty. “I rate myself as probably the best salesperson in Europe” (Jenny). “There’s nobody at my age who has achieved what I have” (Lindi). “People come up to me and say, ‘You’re arrogant!’. I say, ‘You are 100% right. What are you going to do about it?'” (Michael). And, my particular favourite, “I don’t play games. Every-body wants me on their team” (Simon).
They all had jobs which, like the peace of God, passeth all understanding. Helena, for instance, was a global pricing leader, which probably trumps Sara, an international car sales strategist.

There was a paperback published in 2008, The Very Best Of Nancy Banks-Smith, by Nancy Banks-Smith, which I am trying to track down, and I’m sure I’ve got a few more notes somewhere. Meanwhile, as Wikipidia says, this is a stub, which all are welcome to help with.

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2 Responses to NANCY BANKS-SMITH

  1. Helen says:

    Hi – I have been trying to find where Nancy Banks-Smith’s quote “you carry forever the fingerprints that come from being under someone’s thumb” comes from? Do you know?

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