KIERAN HOWARD: Harry Houdini escapology? More like Tommy Cooper!

Don't let Louie near a trike!   (Shutterstock)
Don't let Louie near a trike! (Shutterstock)
Sir Ken Dodd

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There’s no good time for your child to suffer an injury to the mouth.

I’d obviously rather avoid it altogether.

But if it’s going to happen, then six days before a dental check-up is certainly not ideal.

We had our latest teeth examination yesterday – Louie’s second to date.

Unfortunately, the appointment came less than a week after the boy had attempted a rather tricky trike escape manoeuvre in the back garden.

Without warning, after returning from a dog walk, our little Houdini decided to launch himself from his three-wheeler in a desperate bid to unshackle himself.

Sadly, as you’ve probably guessed, what was a fairly challenging procedure didn’t go exactly according to plan.

Less Houdini, his conjuring was more Tommy Cooper when the late comedian deliberately got his magic wrong.

He fell and landed face-first on a wooden border, putting a tooth through his lip in the process.

Thankfully, with our visit to the dentist on the horizon, there was no lasting damage to any of his ivories.

He did suffer a fat lip which resembled a small slug, though.

For a day or so it looked like he’d either been the victim of some backstreet cosmetic surgery. Either that, or he had just gone 12 rounds with world champion boxer Anthony Joshua.

In any case, I was more worried about his latest knock than he was. He simply pondered the tales he could share with his toddler mates – perhaps an heroic story of a wrestle with an angry fox or a tussle with a robust badger.

The initial concern for me was at the sight of blood and trying to stem the flow. Then, once that was firmly under control, the panic turned to having to message Kerrie at work to bring her up to speed with the incident.

There’s no father who will have envied me on that front.

I made certain to include well-angled photos with the texts, just to minimise the lecture which followed.

The photographic evidence achieved the aim.

Of course, Louie milked the injury for all its worth. This lad’s got real acting potential. He’d give the Benidorm cast a run for their money.

He made sure he openly struggled to eat his regular breakfast.

Somehow, he was completely fine with biscuits and chocolate, though. He managed to devour two Morrisons own-brand After Eight chocolates in record time.

I can’t remember their name, but Before Eight is my educated guess.

Anyhow, the slug’s now gone.


If you take a toddler to a Household Waste Recycling Centre, fully expect to return home with more rubbish than you went with.

Louie had his first trip to Gosport’s HWRC last Tuesday. He didn’t have any choice but to accompany me.

Sadly for him, his attendance was compulsory due to it being a Mum’s Gone Back to Work day.

Weekday visits to the tip are preferable, as it’s less busy then.

I tend to avoid it on a weekend at all costs as I don’t want to spend two hours queuing in a car, just to offload some cardboard or grass cuttings.

The little man was keen to help, so I picked him up, leaned him over and allowed him to drop the lighter items into the containers.

Unfortunately, as fast he was dropping stuff in, he was also plucking more things back out.

It was like that arcade grabber machine where you try and winch a teddy with a feeble claw.

The only difference here was that Louie was winning with every single lowering of his hand into the container. He wasn’t dropping anything.

Trying to then wrestle an old pillow from him without tears was quite a battle.

It was also quite a struggle to make sure I didn’t lose him in the container altogether.

Hopefully, he’ll prove more of a help than a hindrance as he grows older.