Thursday, March 01, 2007

The Hippest Cat in Kids' Lit

The Cat in the Hat turns 50 years old tomorrow (which is also the 103rd anniversary of Dr. Seuss's birth) . Along with other Dr. Seuss classics, it was one of my favorite books growing up, The anniversary itself has a website that includes information about Project 236, a literacy initiative named in honor of the 236 different words that Dr. Seuss used to write the book. (Read more about the history of the book here.)

I may not have had the Internet as a kid, but I'm thankful that, during our family's frequent cross-country moves, Mom took the time to read to me. Not only did I learn to read at the age of three (which helped me out immensely in school), but I developed a curiosity and love of knowledge that continue to this day. I know that kids today have a lot of choices, but I hope that the love of reading will continue to be instilled in them by good parents everywhere.

Theodor, Harold and Miles: Dr. Seuss, Miles Davis and legendary local meteorologist Harold Taft all passed away within a week of each other in 1991. It was my intention at the time to write a tune in tribute to all three of them. They had more in common than one might think (each was a pioneer in his field, Taft was an amateur cornetist, etc.), so the idea would be to write a trumpet feature and somehow make the tune have a sort of Seussian meter to it. Of course, the tune hasn't been written yet (I compose and arrange at a glacial pace at best), but the idea remains.

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