The first time I ever thought a writer was a genius was when I was four and my dad plopped me on his lap and read to me "And To Think That I Saw It On Mulberry Street" by Dr. Seuss.
Of course, I was only four, so I didn't break into choruses of "BRAVO"! And "AUTHOR! AUTHOR!" But even at that tender age I knew that somebody had written a story about someone like me! Someone who imagined big things and had big adventures in the unlimited confines of their head...like me!
That became our thing, my dad and me. He'd bring home a book by Dr. Seuss and I would leap into his lap (a practice that ceased when I hit Junior High) to hear him spin the story of Yertle the Turtle, Thidwick the Thick-Headed Moose, and of course, every Christmas Eve, that Grinch that stole Christmas Eve.
As much as I really dug listening to my dad's remarkable baritone voice as he read those books to me, I was really hungry to learn to do that myself. The Good Doctor was my motivation to learn to read...so that any time I wanted to, I could plunge into the worlds of "Scrambled Eggs Super" and "Horton Hears a Who".
Theodor Geisel (Dr. Seuss's real name) was born on this day in 1904 and it's not a coincidence that his birthday was chosen as Read Across America Day.
Take time, clear a lap, and let Dr. Seuss do his magic...creating new readers out of thin air.
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