Portrait Of A Genius

October 31, 2007


At last, I have been recognised as one of the world’s greatest living geniuses. (Joint number 83 with, among others, the best living British film-maker, Ken Russell.)

Perhaps you can print this photograph out and glance at it whenever you need inspiration. In it, I can be seen thinking about something important.

I notice in the Guardian, poor jealous Marcel Berlins describes the list as “barking mad”. I suppose he’s annoyed at his poor position on the list…oh, my mistake! He’s not on the list at all! That’s because it’s a list that only geniuses are allowed on. Geniuses like me.

Now, if you’ll excuse me, I’ve got to get to work. I’d explain what I’m doing, but you wouldn’t understand. Unless you’re Osama Bin Laden or Dolly Parton.

(Thanks to everyone who pointed this out.)


  1. Wow. Just goes to show how arbitrary those lists really are. No offense.

  2. That’s the money shot baby, pay daddy’s bills!
    Christ, it’s worthy of facebook (oxymoronic I know), the place where everyone is pissed and shown in a bad light.

    Don’t mind Marcel, Graham, the list is reasonable and fair.

    “Genius makes no mistake, its errors are volitional and the portals of discovery”

  3. That’s odd because I thought I saw you on Rathgar road last weekend and you didn’t look this handsome.

  4. Oh what the hell, some ill advised gags:

    “Christ, if that’s your real face, I’d hate to see the portrait in the attic!”

    Genius or Guinness’s?

    Are two geniuses not a Genii ?
    I’ll get my coat.

  5. That is one of the most bizarre lists I’ve ever seen.

    Prince, Bin Laden, Murdoch, Kasparov, Spielberg, Linehan……

    You must be honoured! Congratulations.

  6. that has got to be one of the most achingly hilarious photos of a person i have seen all day.

  7. “Each genius was then awarded scores out of ten against criteria which included: paradigm shifting; popular acclaim; intellectual power; achievement and cultural importance.”

    You must be humoured! And where the hell is Stephen Fry?

  8. Off-topic: There’s an advert for “The IT Room” running on Metafilter.com today, if you’re interested in that sort of thing.

  9. Where’s Steven Fry? Off somewhere NOT being a genius, I’d say. And what does “You must be humoured” mean?

  10. Yeah, saw you t’other week too. Devilishly handsome, with the slightest hint of a frown, brought on no doubt by the heaviest of metaphysical conundrums (conundra?). Funny now how the picture at the top of the blog has pre-empted some kind of Stephen Fry transformation – now YOU’RE the one on the end of a pipe, confounding those less intellectually stupendous as you. What was that line in Black Books? “Who cares about our disgusting public?”

  11. I better stop throwing the word “genius” around willy nilly. Now that this list is out, I now know not everything is as great as I though it was.

  12. That is actually the second place I have seen you described as a genius today. The other was in an email from the head of Talkback, so it must be true.

  13. Radio. That’s the way ahead for you and your very rare cameos. Or (channel) FIVE. Anyway – some sort of media that doesn’t emit and/or reflect light.

    Just joking!

  14. Surely this is a list of evil geniuses?

  15. Congrats! Not sure if it’s a pleasure being tied to JK Rowling as a genius. But anywho. The picture is really inspiring!

  16. “I have nothing to declare but my inaccuracy.”

  17. “Not sure if it’s a pleasure being tied to JK Rowling” It’s too easy, even I won’t go there.

    The joke, not JK Rowling…

  18. JK Rowling? Honoured to be in her company. Brilliant books.

  19. Stop making me take it seriously!

  20. Pfft, I coulda told you you were a genius ages ago. Keep up, Telegraph!
    Ahead of Morrissey! Spin on that, Steven Patrick!

  21. I like that Osama Bin Laden has to have a job title just like anyone else, to avoid confusion. “Oh, Osama the Islamicist. I thought it was that other one”.

  22. I saw Stewart Lee last night, the 41st Best Stand-Up Ever, I probably can’t print what he said about polls but if you ever do one of those comedy connection shows you’ve got to request they put ’83rd Greatest Living Genuis’ as your caption. Go on, go on, go on…

  23. This should totally be how you win arguments now. Work it into every conversation possible.

    If that doesn’t work, just whip out that photo.

  24. That’s really quite strange…it’s EXACTLY the same face my baby son used to do when he was filling his nappy. EXACTLY!

  25. Aren’t there lots of comments now. A genius and popular; what more could you ask for?

  26. Congratulations. Although this will now mean you’ll be celebrating the deaths of those above you in the list as you therefore climb higher in the list of living geniuses.

    Not only are you above Morrissey they couldn’t even be bothered to spell his name correctly.

  27. Graham Linehan = genius?
    The Dalai Lama = genius?
    Ranulph Fiennes = genius?!!!

    Hang on, this man takes himself away from his family for long periods of time to spend large sums of money on almost pointless exercises that very few people appreciate or benefit from and that makes him a fucking genius? No way!

    Mind you, I agree about the Dalai Lama and Ranuplh Fiennes. Top blokes.

  28. Excellent. I can use that picture to scare small children this Halloween. (Sorry Graham, couldn’t help it.)

  29. Ah that brings me back to when I was “The coolest dude on the planet”. At least on a list compiled by my mom.

  30. Heh heh Brian Cowan

  31. You may or may not be a genius, but you are funny as hell…

  32. Stan Lee – Publisher.

  33. Geniarse.

    Actually, as far as I am concerned, you are a True Blue Genius, and from an Aussie that’s high praise.

  34. I hope you don’t mind my asking what is admittedly a personal question, but what on earth were you doing when this photograph was taken? To hazard a guess based on the bath robe, wet hair and somewhat “distracted” expression, I would say you’ve been doing a Christopher Hitchens: hitting the scotch hard in the shower. Am I right?

  35. ive just seen this, and i personally find it rather amusing that your own genius is rated equal to that of the inventor of the AK-47, Mikhail Kalashnikov. im not suggesting either one of you is more or less of a genius of the other, just amused that your, er… fields of trade are so disparate…

  36. […] It must be because Graham “Father Ted” Linehan, the show’s creator, has just been named one of the world’s greatest living geniuses by the Creators Synectics (”a global consultants firm”). The IT Crowd, sketch show […]

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