Cleese for the record

But in other areas I was becoming less diffident—or, in St. Peter’s parlance, less “wet.” Indeed, on one occassion, I actually got into a fight with a boy who was teasing me. There I was, lying on the floor, grappling with him, like a proper schoolboy; I even banged his head on the floor, at which point I thought, “Oh my God! If I start losing, he’ll do this to me,” and then, of course, started losing. Fortunately my form master, Mr. Howdle, arrived and broke the fight up. Funnily enough, it was about then that the bullying stopped. This first fight also proved to be my last. I had thought so, anyway, until I read in the Sunday Times recently that I had a fight with Terry Gilliam in the ’80s. I think this is unlikely: owing to the relatively rare occurrence of fisticuffs in the Cleese life it must be statistically probable that I would remember such uncommon events; they would tend to stand out sharply from the rather less pugilistic tone of the rest of my life. And I definitely don’t recall having a fight with Terry Gilliam. May I also point out that if I had, I would almost certainly have killed him. I think the only possible explanation for the Sunday Times article—if it was true—was that Terry attacked me, but that I failed to notice he was doing so. Terry is very short, due to his bandy legs, so when he scuttles around, he stays so close to the floor that it can be difficult to see what he is up to down there.

Cleese, John. So, Anyway… Penguin Random House, 2014. p. 43 (italics in original)