“It is a magic worm!!!” I cry in delight.

I am not sure what to add to this, so there is a brief pause. “This is the best Father’s Day ever,” I assure everybody, diplomatically. My eyes scan the room – there is a lack of other big manly presents, such as shaving equipment or CDs of driving music.

I open my magic worm. It is a three-inch long strip of cloth, with two printed eyes on sticky paper. There is a very fine thread that you must tie to the nose of the worm, and then apparently you can make the worm appear to crawl along and up and over your hands and body by subtly jerking this invisible lead. The instructions don’t exactly say ‘amaze your family and friends!’ but that is their gist.

The Toddler is enthralled. The LTLP gives me an apologetic glance in an ‘I haven’t had the chance to go to the shops’ sort of way, but I am determined to make the most of my new magic worm.

“Later on this special father’s day, my darling,” I purr, fixing her with my smooth gaze, “I thought I might show you my other magic worm.”

The LTLP withdraws her apologetic glance.

I sit at the table and try to affix the invisible thread to the magic worm’s nose. My fingers are strong and agile, but are built for strumming the banjo and playing bowls rather than affixing invisible thread to magic worms, and I shout and swear as the knot keeps slipping. I try to grasp the thread tightly between fingernails, but it keeps looping away from me and then I have to scrabble on the table for it, what with it being invisible. Fifteen minutes later, thread is finally affixed to worm, but by this point its eyes have fallen off and the Toddler is interested in something else.

“Look! Look! Magic Worm!” I cry, clutching the invisible thread in my left hand and moving my arm rapidly up and down to make the worm jump on the spot. The worm jumps on the spot. Unfortunately, the thread might indeed be invisible, but the correlation between the worm jumping up and down and my arm moving up and down would fool none but the thickest infant. I try to make the worm wriggle on my hand, but it slips and hangs, suspended by invisible-but-obvious-it’s-there thread.

Booooooo – I am a rubbish puppeteer. I will never get a job on the Muppets now.

I never really believed in father’s day gifts until I became a father myself and could suddenly see its full profundity. It is a bit like the way ‘World’s Best Dad’ mugs are barf-inducing until you get one yourself. But I think it is important that men should get at least one day in the year when they are fussed over a bit and don’t have to do everything in the world.

I thank the Toddler for my magic worm. She is only young, and I am grateful to her. But she will have to raise her game in future.

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24 thoughts on “I receive a magic worm!!!

  1. Pat says:

    I know dam well if I say I’m first some other b—-r will get in sideways so I’m not saying it. I felt all soft and woozie until you mentioned the other wormand then I shared LTLP’s froideur.

  2. I would threaten to give the baby a banjo until the presents get better.

    I got an “I’m the Daddy” t-shirt (gnurf!). Amazing how my little lad(*) knows how to do Internet purchasing (and perhaps a little worrying).

    Mr W:-)

    (*) refering to my 7 month old son and not my magic worm.

  3. You called it a magic worm. I respect you a little less for that.

  4. Magic worms are the reason we have a Mother’s Day.

  5. Richard says:

    I am resisting the urge to enquire as to whether your own magic worm bounces around in time to your hand movements as it would be a cheap joke and I’m sure totally unfounded. Unless, of course, the LTLP continues to withdraw her glance.

  6. Oooh this brings back memories – I had a whole bunch of magic worms when I was little (the innocent fluffy kind, mind). Have you checked youtube for instructionals?

    By the way, whatever happened to ‘it’s the thought that counts’?

  7. Would this be the same magic worm you pulled out of your butt after those poisoned pub sandwiches?

    Inventive analogy between the magic worm and your own, personal, very-much-less-magic one there, Jonny. Tho’ seeing as it’s the worm that leads you about by an invisible thread, I’d’ve put a little more thought into it before rushing to print. Anyway, my money’s still on the milkman being the real guy to thank for Servalan. Chances are that’s where the aftershave went…

  8. Mujja says:

    The reference to the magic worm and fathers day together in the same blog is quite frankly just wrong…..stop it Johnny! just stop it!!!

  9. spazmo says:

    I had one of those fluffy magic worms that Wontletlifedefineme spoke of.

    The invisible string was entirely too invisible for my eyes at the time, and it ended up getting chucked out with the packaging.

    His advertised name was “Bippy”, but I named him “Thing” and petted him nearly bald. Trust me Jonny, it’s a good present.

    Having said all that, if you end up getting one of those invisible dogs on a leash next Father’s Day, you are hereby entitled to throw a passionate man-tantrum.

  10. enny says:

    You’re meant to thread the thread through and around your fingers, then he looks more ‘lifelike’.

    We used to love those when we were kids :o)

  11. JonnyB says:

    Hullo enny and welcome.

    I’m afraid that however you thread it, it still looks ridiculous. I am quite happy doing puppetry with Mr Mitt, but this magic worm thing is a step too far.

  12. zed says:

    “I purr, fixing her with my smooth gaze, “I thought I might show you my other magic worm.””

    That has to be one of the worst ‘come on’ lines that I have ever heard.

  13. Johng. says:

    Are you sure it isn’t magic thread and invisible worm Jonny!

  14. tillylil says:

    does your other magic worm operate this inefficiently?

  15. bromman says:

    Magic Worm? so that’s where Paul Daniels has been hiding.

  16. Megan says:

    You need to get more simple family and friends so they can be suitably amused. I’m convinced it’s not in the puppeteering but in the relative gormlessness of the audience.

  17. You can have a puppet show!!! Can I play?

    I have a swan puppet. It’s created by straightening my fingers and thumb into a beak-like shape. My swan can be very vicious.

    Happy Fathers Day JohnnyB

  18. Sarah P says:

    Boooo I’ve just come back from 4 days in Norfolk and am very displeased to find no pork butchers but just regular ones selling all the meat you would expect. I’m now very disalusioned and going to stick to Cornwall for future breaks.

  19. NAGA says:

    Mr. Google states, there’s a Magic Worm Ranch. They claim the following…

    ” Worms You came for Worms?…We got em here! …” Which in my humble opinion, isn’t anything to shout about.

    Please ensure The Toddler washes hands after playing in The Chicken Coop. I mean Wendy House.

  20. JonnyB says:

    Oh Sarah P – you should have gone to a market? And avoided the Halal quarter.

  21. Sarah P says:

    Maybe you’re right Jonny, I went to a few markets but nothing with just pork in them, found a couple of sea food ones and a general butchers again… ah well must try harder next time, although not going to Norfolk again for quite a few years maybe I’ll find one in the Midlands.

  22. sooz says:

    Oh my word! I have cried! With laughter! your magic worm is the bestest ever and made me remember the clever worms touted at a local cheapo market!
    This is your best post EVER! (rofl @ the LTLP rejecting your magic worm tantalisation!!)

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  24. Richard says:

    The magic worm does work like magic. It depends on the skill of the operator. I saw a guy doing it at a fair and I was so amazed that I bought two of them. Also they say it works better while working in the nude. It’s fun in nudist colonies.

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