to General Montgomery in North Africa during WWII. Montgomery was standing on the back of a truck making one of his rousing speeches to the troops before they went into battle against the Axis forces. At some point his gaze fell on Harry Secombe who was standing at the front. Harry was a Bombardier in the Artillery, covered in boils, had his glasses broken in several places and put back together with sticky tape, and wore an ill fitting uniform for his rotund shape. Montgomery's speech ground to an awkward silence as he examined his soldier who was beaming up at him. With a huge grin and a salute, Harry filled the void with a cry of "We are with you sir!", to which the troops cheered and Montgomery replied "um, good", before continuing
I suffer fools gladly because I am one of them.
My voice is not so much 'bel canto' as 'can belto'.
Anyone who, for 25 years, has built a career on such tenuous foundations as a high-pitched giggle, a raspberry and a sprinkling of top 'Cs' needs all the friends he can get.