I had no idea how amazingly talented this dude was until I was older, perhaps when I decided to be a writer.
I mean really … who creates worlds like that out of the blue, and then pours them out on the page.
And then makes them rhyme.
And then illustrates these worlds with crayons that color outside the box.
And it’s amazing.
Dr. Seuss would have been 111 years old today.
I remember growing up and going to the library on the hill, the one overlooking the baseball diamond, I headed to the small children’s section in the back and browsed through the books, figuring out which ones I would check out. I used to sit in that little corner for a while until my Dad came by with books of his own and it was time to check out.
I know a lot of people have their favorites. With The Cat and The Hat, Horton Hears a Who, or Oh, The Places You’ll Go! being at the top. They are pretty awesome books with a good lesson in every one, but I’d have to say that my favorite is The Lorax. I never been in GreenPeace or anything but I think it was a great lesson on caring for the environment and being concerned with how your presence can effect your surroundings.
But most of all I think I like The Lorax because he has a little George Costanza in him when things start to fall apart. I mean he tries the nice approach, but The Once-ler doesn’t seem to care about consequences and keeps growing his business at the expense of the environment.
And that’s when it happens … The Lorax hits his Serenity Now moment in hopes that it would change things, but it doesn’t work so he leaves The Once-ler to learn his lesson the hard way.
He reminded me of myself, because sometimes you need a little Costanza in you to get your point across. You need to get passionate and crazy to try to teach people to do the right thing.
I like the fact that this was a kid’s book and someone got a little heated. I liked that there was more than one dimension to the character, because I had more dimension. I had layers. And I liked that I saw that in the book and that it wasn’t a bad thing.
I read it to my kids. It was actually the first Dr. Seuss book I read to my son and enjoyed the fact that he gets caught up in the colorful Dr. Seuss world and appreciates the message. Although The Lorax wasn’t his favorite character, he seemed to enjoy the Brown Bar-ba-loots eating the Truffula fruits and the Humming Fished, who hummed. But his favorite character was the boy in the story, the one with the last Truffula Seed of them all. He seems to care a lot and that’s why he liked him.
And I like that Dr. Seuss exposed this side of my son.
What did Dr. Seuss do for you?
What’s your favorite character?