by Theodor Geisel (Dr. Seuss)
I wish we could do what they do in Katroo.
They sure know how to say “Happy Birthday to You!”
In Katroo, every year, on the day you were born
They start the day right in the bright early morn
When the Birthday Honk-Honker hikes high up Mt. Zorn
And lets loose a big blast on the big Birthday Horn.
And the voice of the horn calls out loud as it plays:
“Wake Up! For today is your Day of all Days!”
The Great Birthday Bird! And, so far as I know, Katroo is the only place Birthday Birds grow.
This bird has a brain. He’s most beautifully brained
With the brainiest bird-brain that’s ever been trained.
He was trained by the most splendid Club in this nation, The Katroo Happy Birthday Asso-see-eye-ation.
And, whether your name is Pete, Polly or Paul,
When you birthday comes round, he’s in charge of it all.
Whether your name is Nate, Nelly or Ned,
He knows your address, and he heads for your bed.
You hear a soft swoosh in the brightening sky.
You are not all awake. But you open one eye.
Then over the housetops and trees of Katroo,
You see that bird coming! To you. Just to you!
That Bird pops right in!
You are up on your feet!
You jump to the window! You meet and you greet
With the Secret Katroo Birthday Hi-Sign-and-Shake
That only good people with birthdays may make.
You do it just so. With each finger and toe.
Then the Bird says, “Come on! Brush your teeth and let’s go!
It’s your Day of all Days! It’s the Best of the Best!
So don’t waste a minute!
Hop to it!
And five minutes later, you’re having a snack
On your way out of town on a Smorgasbord’s back.
“Today,” laughs the Bird, “eat whatever you want.
Today no one tells you you cawnt or you shawnt.
And, today, you don’t have to be tidy or neat.
If you wish, you may eat with both hands and both feet.
So get in there and munch. Have a big munch-er-oo!
Today is your birthday! Today you are you!
If we didn’t have birthdays, you wouldn’t be you.
If you’d never been born, well then what would you do?
If you’d never been born, well then what would you be?
You might be a fish! Or a toad in a tree!
You might be a doorknob! Or three baked potatoes!
You might be a bag full of hard green tomatoes.
Or worse than that . . . Why, you might be a WASN’T!
A Wasn’t has no fun at all. No, he doesn’t.
A Wasn’t just isn’t. He just isn’t present.
But you . . . You ARE YOU! And, now isn’t that pleasant!
So we’ll go to the top of the toppest blue space,
The Official Katroo Birthday Sounding-Off Place!
Come on! Open your mouth and sound off at the sky!
Shout loud at the top of your voice, “I AM I!
I am I!
And I may not know why
But I know that I like it.
Three cheers! I AM I!”
This is just the beginning of the story of the special birthday place created by Dr. Seuss. The book can be purchased here .
Dr. Seuss was born Theodor Geisel in Springfield, Massachusetts, on March 2, 1904. After graduating from Dartmouth College in 1925, he went to Oxford University, intending to acquire a doctorate in literature. At Oxford, Geisel met Helen Palmer, whom he wed in 1927. Upon his return to America later that year, Geisel published cartoons and humorous articles for Judge, the leading humor magazine in America at that time. His cartoons also appeared in major magazines such as Life, Vanity Fair, and Liberty. Geisel gained national exposure when he won an advertising contract for an insecticide called Flit. He coined the phrase, “Quick, Henry, the Flit!” which became a popular expression.
Geisel published his first children’s book, And to Think That I Saw It on Mulberry Street, in 1937, after 27 publishers rejected it.
Winner of the Pulitzer Prize in 1984, an Academy Award, three Emmy Awards, three Grammy Awards, and three Caldecott Honors, Geisel wrote and illustrated 44 books. While Theodor Geisel died on September 24, 1991, Dr. Seuss lives on, inspiring generations of children of all ages to explore the joys of reading.
Above text lifted from the Bibliography at Amazon.com
Dr. Seuss was an author whose works have enriched the lives of millions. For the Fairegarden offspring, his books were the entryway into the world of reading, beginning with the immortal . The birthday book was given to our oldest child, Chickenpoet, by sister to The Financier, Aunt Lynn, for her fourth birthday. CP still has the book, and read it over the phone to be transcribed for this post. The message here comes across loud and clear, the day of our birth is special without equal. Shout it loud, You Are You! Thank you, Dr. Seuss and we honor you on what would have been your one hundred and sixth Day Of All Days. You will never be forgotten for your gifts to mankind.
Many thanks to Carolyn Gail of Sweet Home And Garden Chicago for making the first day of each month special, with Muse Day.
And for those of you living in the Asheville, North Carolina area, our ice cream shop, The Hop, is celebrating in this way:
Dr. Seuss’ Birthday Party!!!!
On Tuesday, March 2nd The Hop is teaming up with another great family-friendly local business, Spellbound Children’s Bookshop, to celebrate Dr. Seuss’ birthday and the wonderful world he has created for many generations. His efforts to promote early reading and imaginative exploration are always worth having a party! And it’s FREE!
Here is the schedule of events…
3:30 – Leslie Hawkins, owner of Spellbound, will be reading one of our favorite Dr. Seuss books. She has graciously and specifically relocated her regular in-store reading to The Hop to help us celebrate!
4:00 – Dr. Seuss related games and activities for all to enjoy.
4:30 – Performance of Bartholomew and The Oobleck by renowned local storyteller, David Novak. If you missed him at our Book Exchange or are aching for another opportunity, here’s your chance to witness a marvel of the storytelling world.
6:30 – Curtain Call Kidz Co., lead by Cat In The Hat – I mean, children’s play director, Christopher Martin 🙂 – and Accompanied by Lenora Thom (!!!) , will be entertaining with all things Dr. Seuss. There will be singing, reciting poems, improving, and engaging in all-out Seuss-related and boisterous silliness. The Company is very open to any and all kids and families. Email Christopher directly here if you are interested in participating.
Also, in honor of the occasion, we will be making an extra special ice cream flavor!! (Pink Lemonade with Swedish Gummy Fish, for the Pink Haze in )
Well done, Mashley and Brokenbeat! This is typical of the family oriented events put on regularly at The Hop. We are quite proud of these efforts, and their home made ice cream is the best!!!! Do stop by if you are in the vicinity, tell them Fairegarden sent you!