Wednesday, April 29, 2020

The Final Solution: Dr. Seuss and the CDC

Theodore Seuss Geisel (1957)
The Cat in the Hat may turn out to be the King Lear of the coronavirus era. You may recall the immortal first lines of the Dr. Seuss classic, “The sun did not shine. It was too wet to play. So we sat in the house. All that cold, cold, wet day.” Would it be wrong to say that the pandemic threw cold water on all of humanity’s dreams and made literally everyone have to stay home, where if you were lucky enough, you might be entertained by such a delicious lord of misrule as the magnificent feline genie who mesmerized generations of children. Remember what it was like when you got sick as a kid? On the first day it was almost fun. You didn’t have to go to school. You could watch TV without restrictions, particularly if you had parents who were employed. But then as time passed, you started to get bored, impatient and eager to see your friends. Besides that you were tired of feeling sick. If you’re following Chris Cuomo, the CNN anchor who’s been diarizing his battle and his obvious discomfiture with the length of time, it’s taken for it to pass—together with his worry about his family and wife Cristina (who’s come down with COVID-19 too), you might recall how interminable illness could seem as a child, when the days were long, lonely and filled with things like nausea and chills. Suffice it to say that the world has been reduced to the condition of the kids in The Cat in the Hat. Whether your suffering from corona or not, you’re stuck. You can’t go out, even when the sun finally does shine. 

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