Good Advice From A Beloved Oddball

GERALD

If you are a regular reader here, odds are good that you’re well….odd. That’s awesome!  Yay for all of us that are just a little bit outside the lines of life’s coloring book.  But every so often, it’s nice to have a little reinforcement that marching to a different drum is A-OK.  In reality, people who aren’t at least a little weird don’t make a difference, do they?

Dr. Suess was definitely quirky.  Maybe downright weird.  Never met the guy.  But we all grew up with his crazy way of passing down important life lessons.  I’ve called you all here today to share one with you that you may have missed.

When I was a child, I loved the story of Gerald McBoingBoing.  I also loved Dr. Suess, but I had no idea until recently that he was responsible for this delightful story.  I read it in an anthology of illustrated short stories for kids, and the credited author was Theodore Geisel.  What kid knew that was Dr. Suess’s real name?  I sure didn’t.  And the illustrations were not your typical Suess fare either.  I’m not even sure if he did them.

For those of you who are unfamiliar with the story, Gerald McBoingBoing was a little boy who was ostracized because he spoke in sound effects instead of words.  We see him drive his parents crazy, be made fun of at school, and eventually run away from home.  But just when things look terribly grim for Gerald, he is rescued by someone who understands how important and special “being different” is.

I had no idea that there was  a short cartoon of this story produced until I happened across it on Turner Classic Movies.  I read the story in the 70′s, and the short is dated from 1951, so it’s no wonder I missed it. (And most likely, you did too.)

(Gerald had a few other short film adventures as well as a short lived television show in the 1990′s)

So, for those of you who may need a little reminding that you don’t need to be like everyone else to be a badass, here for your viewing enjoyment is the charming tale of Gerald McBoingBoing.

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35 thoughts on “Good Advice From A Beloved Oddball

    • Were you a fan of the story in a book, or the cartoon? We had the story in a wonderful four book set that I think was called The Golden Books Treasury of something or other. Lots of great stories and illustrations. I still have one of them, I hope my sister has the others. But, I guess there’s always Ebay, right?

      • I seem to recall watching the cartoon as well as having the book. The cartoon is what stands out more in my mind, though. Thank goodness for eBay, we can buy back all the stuff we threw out!

      • My brother in law has the most awesome underground lair I’ve ever seen. People can feel good that a lot of stuff that they (or their mom) threw out have ended up there. Records, action figures, posters, anything and everything. All arranged in an eclectic manner in it’s own room, complete with an arcade Joust game and a beaded curtain. He’s given me permission to write about it for my blog and for Forces Of Geek, but I haven’t managed to get it done yet. He lives three hours away, and I haven’t had a chance to see him for a while.

  1. Oh boy. I had totally forgotten about that book! I will be digging it out and taking it to school with me on Monday. We have a number of children with delayed speech and speech issues so I have an idea! Thank you so much for the inspirtation! BTW, how gorgeous is that font in the animation??

    • Wow! That’s so awesome. I hope your kids get a kick out of this. I knew I had Gerald on my mind for a reason. People here today seem to identify with him. So glad he could inspire you. This is so great to hear. :-)

    • Thanks! So glad people are liking it. I just couldn’t get Gerald out of my mind last week. I’m almost 48, and this tale has always helped to remind me that it’s okay to be just who I am, even though I’m not just like everybody else.

  2. I didn’t know that Dr. Seuss and Theodor Geisel were the same person until I went to orientation for school at UCSD – as part of orientation they introduced us to Geisel Library (the main library on campus) and gave the history of it and of Theodor Geisel.

    Later in school I was part of a club that held dance parties on campus – and we usually stole names out of Dr. Seus books for the parties. Example: the one around Father’s day every year was, of course, “Hop on Pop.”

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