RIGHT, so here’s the Christmas present for my lovely wife. She’s out so I can wrap it up. The present sits on the table in the back room, unwrapped. The wrapping paper is next to it, and the Sellotape, and the scissors, and the gift tag, and the biro.
It’s a do-it-yourself delight kit, and I gaze at the paper and the other things and imagine my wife’s joy on Christmas morning when she opens the parcel. The expertly-wrapped parcel. The parcel that looks like it’s been wrapped by a lady in a shop, except it hasn’t, it’s be wrapped by old Scissorthumbs McMillan The Sellotape King himself, just to prove that he can.
Over the years I’ve acquired a reputation as a man who can’t wrap. I can’t rap either, so that would make me a non-rapping non-wrapper.
Children and adults would laugh at my terrible attempts to wrap a present; it would often look as though it had been wrapped in the dark by someone with boxing gloves on, or wrapped and unwrapped many times until the paper didn’t quite fit and the Sellotape had lost its sticky.
They would hold the present up as though it was evidence in a trial, or point at it like it was a piece of conceptual art they couldn’t quite grasp the meaning of. I always smiled and shrugged and said things like, “Well, you only take the wrapping off anyway,” and “It’s the thought that counts.”
I accepted my fate. I took on board the fact that I was no good at wrapping presents. I saw it as a little comedy role, like my role as non-driver or as man who doesn’t