If you've met my little brother, you'll know what sort of non-stop character he is. Anything can spark his imagination or pique his interest. We were at the county fair one summer meandering through the master gardener section, and someone was there with a booth about worms. No, not parasites... earth worms. The wriggling kind that aerate your soil, help eat the compost pile down, and become chicken fodder. Nothing exciting there. But he thought the idea of having a bin full of worms as pets was the coolest thing ever. We already had the tiered worm bin from our previous attempt at keeping worms, Dad ordered some worm bedding (I think we ended up with some coconut shell stuffs), and Eli was all set to welcome his worms home. He had studied the handout from the worm booth and some books that we had on the shelf. I think he memorized them actually... He saved up his tooth fairy money to buy himself some new pets. His box of worms finally arrived via mail carrier. Actually, there were some worms that worked their way out of the box and into the mail truck. I feel sorry the the mail lady. I'm sure we have developed a reputation at the local post office... He came running up yelling, "I've got more pets than you! Do we have anything we can feed them?Look at them! Aren't they cute?"
Fast-forward about a year. My dad's aunt is visiting (we hadn't seen her since... well... I think I was but a wee tot); she hadn't met the charismatic storm that is Eli. Immediately following introductions and welcomes, Eli comes bursting in saying proudly, "I've got worms."
The look on my poor aunt's face. You could tell that she was thinking the problematic kind of worms. The kind that plagues carnivores, herbivores, and omnivores alike. The symbiotic relationship that is rather one-sided. We couldn't fill her in immediately. We had to relish the moment. The thought of having parasites is not exactly pretty. Let alone being that enthusiastic to inform others to your, umm, plight. We all had a really good laugh after explaining that it wasn't what she thought it was.
Sorry, random story. That memory came flooding back after watching The Hobbit: An Unexpected Journey.