Still, though, his works lose a certain resonance as you get older. For example, I find it harder and harder to relate with a sense of wonder to the places I'll go. Today I'm more interested in the places I will forego, to instead sit on my couch and remain very still. In that spirit – and in honor of the great doctor's birthday today – here are some updated Dr. Seuss stories for you. Please enjoy.
1. Oh, the First Dates You'll Blow
Today is your day.
You're off to a well-lit bar that's convenient for both of you!
You're off and away!
You have brains in your head.
You have feet in your moderately-priced, semi-trendy shoes.
You can steer yourself
any direction you choose.
You're on your own. (And that's fine – this is 2016.) And you know what you know.
And YOU are the guy (or the girl, or however you identify!) who'll decide where to go.
You'll look up and down guys. Look 'em over with care.
About some you will say, "I don't choose to go there."
With your head full of brains and your shoes full of feet,
you're too smart to go down any not-so-good street, unless you've had a long dry spell, and they said something funny and, whatever, it's happy hour.
And you may not find any
you'll want to swipe right on.
In that case, of course,
you'll head straight out of town, to another comparable dating app.
It's opener there
in the wide open air.
(Which is honestly kind of wreaking havoc with my anxiety, could we move this indoors? Open spaces are just so ... open.)
Out there (terrible) things can happen
and frequently do
to people as brainy (and drunk)
and footsy as you.
OH! The first dates (and dozens of other micro-interactions) you'll blow!
2. The Lorax
He was shortish. And oldish.
And brownish. And mossy.
And he spoke with a voice
that was sharpish and bossy.
"Facebook!" he said with a sawdusty sneeze,
"I am the Lorax. I speak for the feeds.
I speak for the feeds, for the feeds have no tongues.
And I'm asking you, sir, at the top of my lungs." He was very upset as he shouted and puffed,
"What's that THING you've made out of my personal stuff?"
"Look, Lorax," I said."There's no cause for alarm.
I resurfaced just one old photo. I am doing no harm.
I'm being quite useful. This thing is nostalgia.
A Nostalgia's a Fine-Something-That-All-People-Need! It's a memory! It's a photo! It's an update, it's a pic of a cat!
But it has other uses. Yes, far beyond that.
You can use it for boredom. For distraction! For a quick treat!
To cure boredom! Or sell data to advertisers who might have need!"
The Lorax said,
"Social media! You are crazy with greed.
There is no one on earth
who would buy my old feed!"
No more feeds. No more tweets. No more posts to be done.
So, in no time, my uncles and aunts, every one,
all waved me goodbye. They jumped into my cars
and drove off to Snapchat under the smoke-smuggered stars.
Now all that was left 'neath the bad-smelling sky
was my big empty feed ...
The Lorax said nothing. Just gave me a glance ...
just gave me a very sad, sad backward glance ...
As he lifted himself by the seat of his pants.
And I'll never forget the grim look on his face
when he Instagrammed himself and took leave of this place,
Deleted his account, without leaving a trace.
And all that the Lorax left here in this mess
was a small pile of rocks, with a few words ...
"THE LORAX LIKES THIS"
Whatever that meant, well, I just couldn't guess.
3. If I Ran the Zoo
"It's a pretty good zoo,"
said young Gerald McGrew,
"And the fellow who runs it, Seems proud of it, too."
"Maybe I should just enjoy this thing that someone else has clearly put a lot of effort into and is obviously okay with. And after all, I've just conceded that it's a pretty good zoo."
"I could probably just, you know, enjoy the zoo instead of needlessly inserting myself into it or talking ad nauseam, unprompted, about how well I'd run it if I were in charge of it."
"Not that I really have any understanding of the financial, organizational or educational necessities of running a zoo, come to think of it. In fact, I'm pretty ignorant of the whole thing outside of the idea that animals live here. That said, I remain convinced I could do it better."
"But this is 2016, after all, and even as a small child, I have an iPhone and an unearned sense of entitlement. I'm going to go home and leave a one-star Yelp review in arcane rhyme about how much better I could run the zoo."
4. The Cat in the Hat
The sun did not shine.
It was too wet to play.
So we sat in the house
All that cold, cold, wet day.
I sat there with Sally.
We sat there, we two.
And I said, "How I wish
We had something to do!"
So Sally turned on Netflix and we watched the first seven seasons of The Office.
I maintain that that show has merits even after Steve Carell's departure, but Sally disagreed.
And then something went BUMP!
But we ignored it and switched to House.
5. How the Grinch Stole Christmas
The more the Grinch thought of this Who Christmassing,
The more the Grinch thought, "I must stop this whole thing!"
"Why, for 53 years I've put up with it now!"
"I MUST stop this Christmas from coming! But HOW?"
Then he got an idea! An awful idea!
THE GRINCH GOT A WONDERFUL, AWFUL IDEA!
"I know just what to do!" The Grinch laughed in his throat.
And he drafted an email and a few lines of code.
I have been requested by the Nigerian National Petroleum Company to contact you for assistance in resolving a matter. The Nigerian National Petroleum Company has recently concluded a large number of contracts for oil exploration in the sub-Saharan region. The contracts have immediately produced moneys equaling $40,000,000. The Nigerian National Petroleum Company is desirous of oil exploration in other parts of the world, however, because of certain regulations of the Nigerian Government, it is unable to move these funds to another region.
You assistance is requested as a non-Nigerian citizen to assist the Nigerian National Petroleum Company, and also the Central Bank of Nigeria, in moving these funds out of Nigeria. If the funds can be transferred to your name, in your United States account, then you can forward the funds as directed by the Nigerian National Petroleum Company. In exchange for your accommodating services, the Nigerian National Petroleum Company would agree to allow you to retain 10 percent, or $4 million of this amount.
However, to be a legitimate transferee of these moneys according to Nigerian law, you must presently be a depositor of at least $100,000 in a Nigerian bank, which is regulated by the Central Bank of Nigeria.
If it will be possible for you to assist us, we would be most grateful. We suggest that you meet with us in person in Lagos, and that during your visit, I introduce you to the representatives of the Nigerian National Petroleum Company, as well as with certain officials of the Central Bank of Nigeria.
Please call me at your earliest convenience. Time is of the essence in this matter; very quickly the Nigerian Government will realize that the Central Bank is maintaining this amount on deposit, and attempt to levy certain depository taxes on it.
Prince Alyusi Islassis"