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Sam is happy as a clam. He's in the computer room, singing, "There's nothing you can do to me, 'cause I'm as happy as can be!" There is a big blue box sitting next to him on the counter.

Muffy comes in unexpectedly. She notices Sam's happy mood and that he was a bit surprised by her appearance.

"I guess I was just thinking about, uh, other things. You know, other good little things," Sam says, patting the box.

"Oooh! Did somebody give you a lovely gift? Is that what gave you a little lift?"

"Well, no no no no. This isn't for me, Muffy, this is from me."

"Oh, it sounds like something very nice. Uh, is it something made for mice?" Muffy hints.

"Well, no, no actually, it's something for Jodie."

Muffy gasps. "It's Jodie's birthday isn't it, Sam? Oh! What a forgetful mouse I am."

Sam chuckles a bit and tells her it's not Jodie's birthday. "Can you keep a secret?"

Muffy draws her breath in dramatically and stage whispers: "My lips are locked. The key's thrown away. Oooh! Now. Tell me what it is you have to say!"

Sam tells her that five years ago tomorrow, he and Jodie met for the very first time. So it's their fifth anniversary. Right at the stroke of midnight, Sam is going to give Jodie a cake. He opens the blue box on the counter, and inside, there's a white frosted cake which he made himself. On top, he has spelled out her name in jelly beans. Muffy's very impressed. "Well, ever since Jodie and I met, - well, she helped me get this job here in the store - well, I've just been happier than a frog on a lily pad! So I thought I should just let her know that I remembered her kindness, you know."

"Oh, she'll be so happy, she'll probably cry. Come to think of it, so will I. Oh, it'll be great. Oh, I can't wait!"

Sam reminds her to make sure Jodie doesn't find out about it, because it will be more fun if it's a secret. "It's going to be a great surprise," he sings, "just picture the look in Jodie's eyes, she won't suspect a thing you see, 'cause it's a secret between you and me. It's a secret, a secret, so don't tell anyone. It's a secret, a secret, and that's what makes it fun!"

Muffy says, "Oh, you'll see, your secret's safe with me. Quiet as a mouse I'll be."

Meanwhile, Jodie is in the children's department, putting finishing touches on a little gift of her own. She cuts off the end of a ribbon. "There! Perfect!" she says.

Jeff comes in behind her. "What's perfect, Jodie?"

Jodie jumps and tries to hide the present behind her back. "Nothing! It's . . . Oh, Jeff, it's you! Gee, am I glad to see you."

"Well, I'm glad to see you, too, Jodie, but why did you jump like that just now?"

"Oh, it, uh, well, you see, I - I thought that you might've been Sam."

"Don't you wanna see Sam?"

"Yeah, of course I do, just not right now, that's all." Jodie says, obviously flustered.

Jeff puts his hand on her shoulder. "Jodie," he says, gently. "Is something wrong?"

"No, nothing. Well, it's just that . . ." she looks carefully around the room before she whispers, "It's a secret!"

"I like secrets," breathes Jeff. "What is it?"

"You have to promise not to tell."

"I promise."

So Jodie explains that tomorrow is the fifth anniversary of the day that she and Sam met, and so, at the stroke of midnight, "I'm going to give him this." She pulls out the box she had been hiding.

"Oh! He's going to love it! - What is it?"

So Jodie opens the box. It's a new bow tie. It will match his security outfit beautifully.

Jeff thinks it's a great surprise.

"Well, as long as he doesn't find out about it," says Jodie.

"Well, he won't find out about it from me! I mean, after all it's a secret right?"

"Just think of the smile, on Sam's old face," Jodie sings, "When I take the gift from its hiding place. He won't suspect a thing you see, 'cause it's a secret between you and me." She and Jeff dance and sing, "It's a secret, it's a secret, so don't tell anyone . . ." as they sing, they playfully snatch the gift from each other until Jeff graciously presents it back to Jodie, who goes off to hide the package. "Remember, Jeff," she says before she leaves. "Shhhh!"

The mime lady has her own secret. She's holding something at the end of a long rope, but she can't tell us what it is because it's a secret. So we try to guess. She begins tugging furiously. "Is it an elephant?" TXL asks. No. "A lion?" No. "A wild horse?" No. Finally, she gives us a hint by miming a dog. "It must be a big, strong dog," TXL says. The mime gives the so-so sign.

"We're partly right?" says TXL. Then finally, we see it. In walks a cocker spaniel.

"Oh, I see, it's a little strong dog." says TXL. "I liked that secret. Didn't you?"

In the meantime Jeff and Muffy aren't doing too good a job of concealing that they have secrets. Jeff is singing, "It's a secret, a secret, so don't tell anyone," as he peers around the children's department furtively. Muffy, for her part, strolls in whistling, in an obvious attempt to appear casual. When they see each other, they're both startled.

"Muffy! Muffy! Oh! So what are you up to?" says Jeff.

"Oh, nothing much, just, uh, stuff and such!"

"Gee, I - I wonder what time it is? Do you suppose it's getting close to . . ." here Jeff drops his tone dramatically, "Midnight?"

"Oh! Why do you ask about that hour? Uh, does it have some special power?"

"Well, I don't know, I uh, . . . it might! Tonight." Jeff says, looking at us slyly.

"Well, that may well be, but we'll just, uh, see." says Muffy.

"So! Muff!" Jeff says. "Whadaya know?"

"Well, I know this one thing perfectly well. Whatever I know, I cannot tell!"

"What are you talking about?"

"Well, I promised Sam not to say a word about the secret that I heard."

Jeff looks horrified. "You heard about a secret, too?" He puts his head down close to Muffy's.

"Are you trying to say you heard one today?"

"Well, yes, Jodie tol -, well, um, what was your secret about, Muffy?"

"You know very well, I cannot tell!"

"Well, um, did it have something to do with, uh, Jodie and Sam?"

Muffy gasps. "I cannot lie, because, in truth, it was!"

"And a present at midnight?" Jeff whispers.

"Oh no! How do you know?"

"Well, Jodie told me!"

"Oh! You mean Jodie knows about this present? Oh, this is becoming very unpleasant."

"Of course Jodie knows. What worries me is if Sam knows."

"Oh, but don't you see? He told me!"

"Oh, this is terrible, now the present isn't a secret anymore."

"Oh! This is as bad as bad can get. Sam is going to be very upset."

"Sam? Think how Jodie's gonna feel!"

"Well, I know I didn't tell anyone," Muffy says, "But an unsecret secret is just no fun!"

"You can say that again, Muffy."

"An un . . ." begins Muffy, but Jeff silences her with a gesture and a shake of the head, and then pats her on the head when she complies.

Meanwhile, the mime is very excited. Something good has happened, but she can't tell because it's a secret. But she's bursting with it. TXL suggests that she tell someone who won't tell anyone else. So the mime whispers it in the dog's ear. Ah! Now she feels better. "You told your secret, but it's still a secret, right?"

Maybe not. The dog goes off to the side and begins howling.

"Oh no," says TXL, "Now all the other dogs in the neighborhood know your secret!"

Jeff, in the children's department, expresses his disappointment to us that Sam apparently knows about Jodie's gift. It would have been much more fun if it had been kept a secret, he says, though, of course, Sam will still enjoy his present.

"It was kind of fun for awhile, having a secret. You know, I think everybody has some kind of secret. Well, a secret can be something that you want or like. I have a secret wish. Something I've never told anybody before. Do you wanna know what it is?" He looks to the right, then to the left, and then says, "I wish that all the toys in the store could come alive and dance with me. There it is! Now you know! Aw, but it will never happen. But just think if it did!"

He begins to sing "Just think how lovely life could be if toys could come and dance with me, we would call to all the girls and boys in my secret world of toys . . ." Dancers dressed as a teddy bear, a ballerina doll, a toy soldier and a clown dance with Jeff. "And together we would sing and dance and celebrate our circumstance 'cause there's only room for girls and boys in my secret world of toys." He executes an impossibly high kick at one point. When he finishes the song, the dancing toys disappear and the fantasy is over. Jeff smiles at us.

Muffy is in her room, sitting on her bed. She is also sorry that the secret has been discovered. "Just think how pleased she would've looked to see the cake that Sam had cooked," she laments. "With no secrets left to keep. I might as well just go back to sleep." She lies down for about a second, and then pops back up. "Ah-ha! But wait. It's not too late. If Sam's secret for Jodie is now well known, then I'll just start planning one of my own!"

Meanwhile, Jeff is wondering what to do next. Should he tell Jodie that Sam knows about her gift, or should that be kept a secret as well?

Jodie comes back into the children's department, still glowing with anticipation about Sam's surprise.

"Jodie, how important is it to keep a secret?" Jeff asks her.

"Why?" Jodie says warily. "Oh, Jeff, you didn't tell Sam my secret did you?"

"No! No! I wouldn't do that. I just wanted to know how important secrets are."

Jodie tells him that's a hard question because there are good secrets and bad secrets.

"Oh, how can a secret be bad?" Jeff asks.

"A secret could be bad if it's going to hurt somebody." She gives an example. If a friend said he was going to steal something, it would be best to tell that secret to someone so that together they could stop him from doing it.

"Yeah, but your secret is a good secret."

"Right. Because all we're going by keeping it is making sure that Sam has a really nice surprise."

"Jodie, what I really wanted to . . ." Jeff begins, but Jodie puts him off. She has to write Sam's card before midnight, but she'll get back to him right afterwards. Then she leaves.

'Oh, boy. Now I really don't know what to do." says Jeff. Whether he tells or not, Jodie will be unhappy to find out Sam knows her secret. So Jeff decides to create a new secret, one that neither Jodie nor Sam knows about. "That's it! I'll start a new secret."

As the minutes tick towards midnight, Sam is looking around for a piece of paper and a pen to write Jodie a note. He asks TXL if she's seen either.

"Over the years, Mr. Crenshaw, I've seen approximately 4,937,000 pieces of paper and 15,288 pens. Which particular ones did you have in mind?"

"Well, never mind, TXL, I'll find one myself."

TXL offers to amuse him with a story while he searches.

"Have you got one about those funny people, the, you know - the uh, oh what was their names now?"

"You mean the Forgetful Family." TXL reminds him. So she tells a story about the day Fannie Farley finally remembered something, that it was her husband Farley Forgetful's birthday. So she decided to make a cake to surprise him. But first, she forgot a mixing spoon. Then she forgot what she was making. Somehow she finally got it into the oven. But when Farley arrived, everyone remembered there was something in the oven, and that it was a surprise, but they've forgotten who it's for. Then Fannie says to Farley, "I know! Let's pretend it's your birthday, and it can be a surprise for you!" The whole family liked the idea, so they all hunted around until they found the cake in the oven, and, then everyone had a piece. Fannie was pleased with how well she had kept her secret.

As usual, Sam is amazed that anyone can be that forgetful.

"It is remarkable, Mr. Crenshaw," TXL agrees.

"Yeah. Eh. Um. Speaking of remarkable, there was something I was gonna do here, I - I had something that I - do you? Penelope do you remember what I -?"

"Mr. Crenshaw is something wrong?"

Sam tells her he can't remember what he was going to do before she told him the story. She tells him, "It had something to do with writing a card for Jodie."

"Oh! Blazin' ball point pens, you're absolutely right!" So Sam continues his search for a paper and a pen.

We visit with the mime lady again. This time the cocker spaniel is sitting next to her and she's holding a basket. What's inside is yet another secret. TXL asks if she wants to tell the dog about it. The mime emphatically shows that she doesn't. It's a secret from the dog. "What could possibly be in the basket that you wouldn't want the dog to know about?" TXL asks. The mime lady mimes a cat. "Oh, you mean . . ." TXL begins, and then the mime lady pulls back the blanket and there are two extraordinary adorable white puff-ball kittens inside. "Those are cute little . . . you know whats," TXL says.

Jodie is also looking for a pen and paper up in the children's department. As she looks, we can see Jeff hiding behind a display and writing something. Then Sam comes in, and Jodie and Sam, both carrying their presents, suddenly meet. Sam tries to hide the cake box behind his hat, and Jodie puts the box behind her.

"Oh! Jodie!"

"Sam! What a surprise meeting you here!"

"Yeah, well I do work here, you know, Jodie."

"You do? I mean, you do! Of course you do! Well, it's just that, well I wasn't expecting to see you here. Like this."

"Well, uh, to be honest, heh-heh, I wasn't expecting to see you here either. Small little store, isn't it?"

"Yeah. Really small. Well, gee, I - I guess I'd better be going. You know. Work! Work! Work!" She backs away.

"Bye!" says Sam.

"Oh! I barely got away with that!" Jodie says as she steps away from Sam.

Sam, meanwhile, hides the cake box under the toy counter. "Oh, boy! I don't think she suspected a thing."

Muffy is following him and scribbling on a piece of paper.

At last, Sam finds a piece of paper and a pen in the stockroom. Muffy is still lurking behind. It's nearly midnight. "Oh, ho-ho-ho, I'm working on a big surprise for Jodie and for Sam," Muffy tells us. "And when I'm done you'll realize what a clever mouse I am!"

Now Jodie comes into the stockroom, and she, too, finds a piece of paper and a pen. She wonders, briefly, why Sam was in such a funny mood earlier, and hopes there's nothing wrong that might spoil her surprise.

And yes, Jeff is lurking behind her, still scribbling on a piece of paper. "I guess you're wondering what I'm doing," he says to us. "Well, I'm working on a surprise for Jodie and Sam. I'd tell you all about it but I'm running out of time. Besides, that way it'll be a surprise for you, too!" Then away he goes.

Soon the clocks begin to chime. It's midnight. Sam peaks out from behind the children's department door. "Big Ben, it's midnight! Time for the surprise!"

Jodie peaks from behind a display. "Whew! I got everything together just in time."

But Jeff says, "Oh, no! I'm not finished yet. Oh, well, this'll have to do."

And Muffy says, "Oh, no, oh, no! I'm much too slow!"

The clock is still chiming. Sam gets his cake ready, Jodie goes looking for him, and all four of them converge on the children's department as the last chime rings. They startle each other.

"You surprised me!" Jodie says to Jeff.

"And I haven't even tried, yet." He replies.

Jodie tells Sam he was just the person she was looking for and he says, "That's funny, I was looking for you, too."

Jeff tries to interrupt, but Jodie says, "Jeff, just a second, there's something really important that I have to do." She walks over to Sam. "Sam, this is our fifth anniversary, and this is for you." She hands him the present.

"Oh, Jodie!" says Sam. "You remembered! I thought I was the only one who remembered. That's why I - I made you this, Jodie." He gives her the blue box.

"Oh, Sam!" says Jodie, taking the lid off the cake. "What a nice surprise!"

"That gift is a surprise to you?" says Muffy, "Oh! And all along, I thought you knew!"

"No, I didn't suspect a thing," Jodie says.

"I thought Sam knew all about your gift," Jeff says.

"Are you kidding, Jeff, it never even crossed my mind," chuckles Sam. He notices right away that his new bow tie will match his security outfit, and holds it up to show everyone.

"Well, I guess I didn't need to do this, then," says Jeff, looking at his clipboard.

Muffy chuckles. "I guess my surprise wasn't very wise."

"Wait a minute, what are you two talking about?" asks Jodie.

Jeff explains that he thought Sam knew all about Jodie's gift. "I didn't want you to be disappointed, so, well, I made you this anniversary surprise for the two of you."

"Well, that was very nice of you, Jeff," says Sam, "so what's the gift?"

"It's a drawing." He shows them a very good pen and ink drawing of Jodie. He had meant to make it of both of them, but he ran out of time.

"Aw, but Jeff, it's terrific!" says Jodie.

"Yeah, it sure is Jeff," adds Sam.

Muffy is giggling. "Hey! Does everybody want a laugh? Look who's got the other half!" She then shows her surprise, which is also supposed to be a drawing of Jodie and Sam, only she only had the time to draw Sam!

"Aw, it's beautiful, Muff!" says Jodie.

"Well, it certainly has been a night for surprises," says Jeff. "We thought there would only be one surprise and there turned out to be four of them!"

"It really was a great surprise," sings Jodie, "to see the look in all our eyes. We didn't suspect a thing, you see, 'cause it's a secret between you and me . . . " Then everyone joins in. "It's a secret, a secret, we didn't tell anyone. It's a secret, a secret, and that's what made it fun!"

As the ending music begins, all four of them fade from view and something appears on the counter, bathed by a soft light. It's the two pictures of Sam and Jodie, together in one frame.


  • Everyone in the store has a secret. What is Sam's? What is Jodie's? We know those two, but what about Muffy and Jeff? We'll have to wait and see.

Nursery Rhyme:

  • None


  • This episode implies that the years that went by in "Today's Special" were "real time." At this point, in the sixth season, the show had been on for 5 years, and this was Sam and Jodie's "fifth anniversary," indicating that they met in 1981.
  • Muffy and Jeff do a terrible job of keeping the secret from each other, though they didn't tell Jodie or Sam.
  • This episode contains a rare non-rhymed sentence from Muffy: "I cannot lie, because in truth, it was."
  • The dancers in the "Secret World of Toys" number were Brad Cormier, Bernadette Gale, Claire Gironella, and Ben Magnin.
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