I Can’t Read Dr. Seuss

I think I’ve read every single Doctor Seuss book out loud to my kids. And while some of them are relatively painless to read, such as One Fish Two Fish Red Fish Blue Fish (a simple tale told in few words), most Dr. Seuss books are pure torture to read out loud.

Take Fox in Socks.

“Who sews crow’s clothes? Sue sews crow’s clothes. Slow Joe Crow sews whose clothes? Sue’s clothes.”

Is it just me?

And what about The Cat in The Hat? First of all, it’s this harrowing tale of a demented man-cat who bursts in on two innocent children, destroys their house and plays on their anxiety. And it goes on and on, like this:

“I can hold up the cup. And the milk and the cake! I can hold up these books! And the fish on a rake! I can hold the toy ship. And a little toy man! And look! With my tail I can hold a red fan!”

And that’s just the beginning. Parents everywhere feel a nameless dread right about the first time the cat says, “Oh, no. That is not all…” Really? It’s not?

One of my all-time-favorite books when I was a kid was If I Ran the Circus, by the good Dr. In fact, I hung onto my old, red, hard copy until I had my own kids and gave it to them. Which was a terrible mistake. Because now it’s up to me to read them 63 pages of mind-crushing classic Seuss, over and over and over until the end of time.Here’s an excerpt from page 31:

“Then a fluff-muffled Truffle will ride on a Huffle. And, next in line, a fine Flummox will shuffle. The Flummox will carry a lurch in a pail. And a Fibbel will carry the Flummox’s tail.”


And that is why, when my three fabulous children come running up to me with their favorite Dr. Seuss book I say to them, “Oh, Daddy loves that book! He’d love to read that to you!” And sure, that gets me a huge, dirty look from Daddy, but I’ve spared my children the sight of me hurling one of their cherished books across the room. And isn’t that what semi-decent parenting is all about?

About the Author:

Brooklyn mom Maggie da Silva is an avid car camper, nature lover, blogger and recipe tester. She blogs about all things camping at Real Family Camping and loves to connect with fellow campers as @FamilyCampers on Twitter.

Maggie is also the author of five children’s books in the Nature’s Children series published by Grolier Educational, and the Editor-In-Chief of Gooch! Magazine, an art, literature and humor magazine she founded in 1997.