I’ve always been a Dr. Seuss fan. My mom read Dr. Theodore Geisel’s books to me as a kid and I read them myself and I read them to my kids. One day I hope to read them to a grandkid…but I’m not ready just yet. I can still recite “Green Eggs and Ham” by heart. And I often credit “Oh, the Thinks You Can Think!” as the original inspiration for my imagination. (Some have accused me of adopting a writing style that copies a Dr. Seuss rhyming pattern, but if I do, I can’t tell, can you?)
Perhaps the greatest legacy of Dr. Seuss is “How The Grinch Stole Christmas”. The book. The song. The original animated movie in 1966, and yes, even the live action film in 2000 starring Jim Carrey. I love them all.
Unlike other beloved Christmas movie characters like Buddy the Elf, George Bailey, Clark Griswold and Ralphie, the Grinch is an anti-hero, not the wide-eyed, spirit-filled protagonist who puts a tree up before Thanksgiving.
The Grinch relates to us all on some level. We all know that guy who’s a bit grouchy, pessimistic, and hates wearing pants. You know the kind; a loner who talks mostly to his dog. The guy’s never happy and envious of other people who are “in the spirit.”
I’ve been stressed out lately for a litany of reasons; personal and professional. I shall not bore you with the details, but in this “most wonderful time of the year” I’ve been more Grinch than Mensch. It started with a bug that I couldn’t shake for 2.5 weeks and on top of stress and deadlines and dealing with “stuff,” I’ve been in a bah-humbug mood since Turkey Day.
I had a long day of shopping and Christmas prep last week. The post office lost a package and sent two “package delayed” notifications. The tag on the item I purchased at Target was ripped and I got held hostage for nearly an hour trying to find the price. And 16 other things.
At 9 p.m., I started tackling the presents with wrapping paper and a glass of holiday cheer. The tape dispenser broke and so did the glass. Defeated, I sat down in front of the TV and Grinched out on Grinch movies. I smiled and laughed and forgot all about my “first world problems.” Within a few hours, my heart grew three sizes.
I hope you have a very merry Christmas and remember, “maybe Christmas (he thought) doesn’t come from a store. Maybe Christmas perhaps means a little bit more.”