Comedy legend Sir David Jason has offered some entertaining advice for all those struggling to keep a safe distance from other people during the Coronavirus pandemic and has spoken about how much he thanks God for the NHS care workers and service personnel who are working tirelessly to combat COVID-19.
He also hopes that after the lockdown is lifted, we all remember to be kind to one another and recognise that we are all the same. He said:
“Let’s hope we can keep the community spirit and … we should learn to live together to fight a common enemy.”
Since the Government introduced the nationwide lockdown, to help prevent the spread of the deadly virus, some people have found keeping away from others difficult but, Sir David, who is patron of the RAF Charitable Trust, has the answer.
The 80-year-old actor was inspired by a classic sketch from BBC comedy Only Fools And Horses, in which he portrays the infamous ‘Del Boy’, to record a video for social media encouraging people to use 'Triggers Broom’ to maintain a safe distance between themselves and others during the COVID-19 pandemic.
The comedy genius, best known for his roles in BBC comedies Only Fools And Horses and Open All Hours, suggests you could say ‘Triggers’ or ‘Broom’ to let people know they’ve come too close and to back away.
This refers to the moment road sweeper Trigger, portrayed by Roger Lloyd-Pack, talks about his beloved broom. In one episode, he says:
“This old broom has had 17 new heads and 14 new handles in its time.”
Another character then responds by saying exactly what the audience is thinking, with:
“How the hell can it be the same bloody broom then?”
Speaking to BFBS Radio, the popular TV star said there was a bonus to using ‘Triggers Broom’ as a social distancing tip. He said:
“If you don’t know what it means, you can explain it to … the person who doesn’t know and who knows, you might have pulled.”
It is not the first time the actor has been interviewed by BFBS and Forces News.
Sir David revealed to Forces News in 2014 that, when he was younger, he didn’t feel academic enough to join the Royal Air Force but that a gliding lesson changed the course of his life forever. He said:
“It gave me such confidence that … a few years later it gave me the courage to follow my other dream, which was to become an actor and, well, here I am.”
So, if it wasn’t for learning how to fly, would we have had one of the greatest comedy characters in the history of British television, Del Boy? Sir David said:
“No, I don’t think you would have done.”
The now-qualified helicopter pilot took the opportunity while speaking on BFBS Radio, to send a message of support to NHS care workers and the military during this Coronavirus pandemic. He said:
“In times like this, you realise how you … desperately need their professionalism and their dedication more than anything else.
“They are the most brave people, at times like this.
“Giving of themselves, going into dangerous areas where the rest of us wouldn’t dream of going.
“I take my mental hat off to them and think thank God for them.”
Sir David, who was interviewed by Hatch and Geere on BFBS on April 15, also spoke about how he’s keeping himself entertained during the pandemic. While others are binge-watching TV they’ve never seen before, or revisiting the classics to relieve the boredom, Sir David has purposefully kept away from the work he is perhaps best known for – Only Fools And Horses. He finds watching the BBC comedy series too emotional. He said:
“It’s too much of a powerful memory of days that I used to do and not doing anymore.
“Though I’m very proud of those shows, and it’s still entertaining … new audiences now but for me to watch a programme it’s such a … bit of a hurtful process knowing I’m not doing it now.
“It’s such a nostalgic kick in the stomach as it were so I find it difficult to watch.”
Social distancing is suiting the TV personality at the moment because he sometimes finds it difficult to be out in the public eye due to the attention he receives from fans. He describes the experience of being noticed wherever he goes as being very strange. He said:
“The idea of going out – I have to prepare myself a bit because it’s like going out inside a goldfish bowl because you create an interest.
“What it does is have a knock-on effect that you don’t want to go out socially unless you have to.”