Friday phrase: and now we can go to your frankfurter parties

With summer right here right now (even if it may be chucking it down while you’re reading this), thought turn to being outdoors, barbecues and so on.

Or maybe not. Sometimes, the dreams of easy get-togethers aren’t so easy – if you don’t think you’ll be invited in the first place.

We’ve all had moments of finding our own crowd – as well as moments on standing on the sidelines, wanting to join in, but being turned away.

So back to Dr Seuss, and the Sneeches that I referred to last time. Because the Sneeches come in two sorts: ones with stars on their bellies, and ones without. (At least, to begin with.)

Those stars. They show who belongs, and who doesn’t. But they can be changed. At a price.

Having grown up on relatively small amounts of Dr Seuss, ie The Cat in the Hat Comes Back (and nothing else), it was quite something to start discovering more of his writings.

And just how pertinent they still are, whether covering environment, persecution of difference, political opposition – or even just how cool it would be to invent your own extra month called Octember.

At the start of the weekend, I hope you’ll be included. I hope you’ll include others, if that doesn’t sound too moralising. And I hope you don’t get ripped off (as the Sneeches do), trying to get the signs that will help you fit in.

You may find you have more in common than you think.

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Dr Seuss, The Sneeches

Then they yelled at the ones who had stars at the start,
"We're exactly like you! You can't tell us apart.
We're all just the same, now, you snooty old smarties!
And now we can go to your frankfurter parties."

You can read the rest of the story in full online, and there's also a cartoon version of the Sneeches.

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