News: Dr. Seuss: man of few words
Story by Cpl. Thomas Bricker
BARSTOW, Calif. - In the history of Western Civilization, many have faced challenges that have garnered prominence; after the Industrial Revolution, American folk hero John Henry beat a steam-driven hammer while constructing the Chesapeake and Ohio Railway to prove man could still compete against machine. The 1980 United States Olympic hockey team, consisting of a group of college players, overcame their adversity to beat the professional Russian team during the famed ‘Miracle on Ice.’
One challenge many students in America learn about was much more mental than it was physical. In 1960, Theodore Geisel, aka Dr. Seuss, published a book that revolutionized the children’s literature industry.
Seuss, already an acclaimed children’s book author at the time, was known for works such as “And to Think That I saw it on Mulberry Street” and “The Cat in the Hat.” The latter story used 225 words and rhyming sequences that changed the way children learned to read. This was a feat in itself.
Bennett Cerf, Seuss’s editor at the time, was a prominent figure in the literature industry as well. He issued Seuss a challenge students still learn about to this day; Seuss was to write a book using 50 words or less.
The result in this challenge became one of the world’s most iconic children’s books of all time. Using exactly 50 words, Dr. Seuss conceived “Green Eggs and Ham.”
Since then, approximately 200 million copies of the book have been sold. The title of the book is a household name.
Dr. Seuss’s birthday has become a celebration in itself. Schools across the country participate in ‘Read Across America,’ a day set aside to specifically promote reading. Although March 2 fell on a Saturday this year, many celebrated it early or afterward.
Marine Corps Logistics Base Barstow, Calif., celebrated Dr. Seuss’s legacy in several ways. Closer to the zany author’s birthday, the base library had several games and a story time for kids attending the base child development center.
On March 18, the base’s Single Marine Program hosted the 4th annual Green Eggs and Ham breakfast for base employees. During the event, patrons could choose between different styles of green eggs. Proceeds benefited the base SMP.
A.J. Jacobs, MCLB Barstow’s SMP coordinator, explained that the event was good to compliment the recently passed Read Across America Day and the green coordinated with St. Patrick’s Day as well.
Because of a never-back-down attitude and a few rhymes here and there ... and everywhere... events like the Green Eggs and Ham breakfast can continue to happen.