Today is National Read Across America Day in honor of the birthday of Theodor Seuss Geisel, better known by his most famous pen name “Dr. Seuss”. My childhood memories are filled with Dr. Seuss books, TV shows, movies, and even albums! I had an LP of Fox in Socks and Green Eggs and Ham, and I can still picture myself sitting on the floor by my mom’s HUGE record player while listening to this recording. Every Christmas, of course, we would all watch “How the Grinch Stole Christmas”, and because I also had the book I would quote the entire show! And when we went to the library, I think I probably got at least one of his books every time! And now that I have a daughter, I have been able to read many of his books to her as well and to share with her his humor and creativity!
Dr. Seuss (which is technically pronounced to rhyme with “voice”) led an interesting life filled with both successes and failures and, at times, much turmoil. But he used his talents to support and assist with political and educational issues he believed were important. For instance, his book The Cat in the Hat was written in response to a 1954 report that children were not learning to read because their books were boring. Dr. Seuss was challenged to write a book using only a list of 250 words that first-graders should recognize. It took him 9 months, but he was able to finish this work using 236 of those words, and now this book still sells about half a million copies each year.
Dr. Seuss would be 107 years old today, and in honor of that, here are some of my favorite quotes from his works:
~“Today you are You, that is truer than true. There is no one alive who is Youer than You.”
~“A person’s a person, no matter how small.”
~“Today was good. Today was fun. Tomorrow is another one.”
~“You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself in any direction you choose.”
~”The more that you read, the more things you will know. The more that you learn, the more places you’ll go.”
~“It’s a troublesome world. All the people who’re in it
are troubled with troubles almost every minute.
You ought to be thankful, a whole heaping lot,
for the places and people you’re lucky you’re not.”
~”Be who you are and say how you feel, because those who mind don’t matter and those who matter don’t mind.”
~”Don’t cry because it’s over, smile because it happened.”
~”We are all a little weird and life’s a little weird, and when we find someone whose weirdness is compatible with ours, we join up with them and fall in mutual weirdness and call it love.”
~”Unless someone like you cares a whole awful lot,
Nothing is going to get better. It’s not.”
~“You know you’re in love when you can’t fall asleep because reality is finally better than your dreams.”
~”I’ve heard there are troubles of more than one kind, some come from ahead and some come from behind.
But I’ve brought a big bat. I’m all ready you see,
now my troubles are going to have troubles with me!”
~”Big Z, little Z, what begins with Z? I do.
I’m a zizzer zazzer zuzz, as you can plainly see.”
~”I like nonsense, it wakes up the brain cells. Fantasy is a necessary ingredient in living, It’s a way of looking at life through the wrong end of a telescope. Which is what I do, And that enables you to laugh at life’s realities.”
~”Why are they sad and bad and glad? I do not know, go ask your dad!”
~”Maybe Christmas,” he thought, “doesn’t come from a store. Maybe Christmas. . . perhaps. . . means a little bit more!”
~”Think left and think right and think low and think high. Oh, the thinks you can think up if only you try!”
Happy birthday, Dr. Seuss!!!