: You''re only old once! (9780394551906) : Dr Seuss : Books
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You''re Only Old Once!

by Dr Seuss
Our price: LBP 770,000Available
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Product Details

  • Publisher: Random House
  • Publishing date: 17/12/1990
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-13: 9780394551906
  • ISBN: 0394551907


Subtitled A Book for Obsolete Children, this unusual item in the Seuss canon doesn't really belong among the children's books. Written to celebrate the nonsense master's 82nd birthday, it follows "you" (an elderly gent in a suit and white moustache) through a physical check-up in some fiendish geriatric clinic. You are measured, prodded, and subjected to all the medical indignities familiar and unfamiliar to the elderly. "You must see Dr. Pollen, our Allergy Whiz, who knows every sniffle and itch that there is... He will check your reactions to thumbtacks and glue, catcher's mitts, leaf mould, and cardigans too. Nasturtiums and marble cake, white and blue chalks, anthracite coal and the feathers of hawks." It's clear that the process is going to be long, but much shorter than the bill. The blurb on the back says it all: "Is this a children's book? Well... not immediately. You buy a copy for your child now and you give it to him on his 70th birthday." Actually, it would make an amusing gift for anyone over 40. --Richard Farr

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  • Perfect Gift for Those Whose Social Life Is Visiting Doctors
    From Amazon

    I sometimes think that retirement is when you stop going to work full time so that you can go to doctors full time. Dr. Seuss seems to agree with that observation in this witty, beautifully illustrated book.

    The book starts off like most Dr. Seuss books, beckoning you towards a far distant, wonderful land. In this case, the land is Fotta-fa-Zee where there's "no smelly bad traffic," you feel fine at 103, and your teeth and hair are kept strong by chewing nuts from the Tutt-a-Tutt Tree.

    Then reality sets in. You've just been reading National Geographic about Fotta-fa-Zee while sitting in the Golden Years Clinic waiting for the physical that no one should ever have. The high point of this whole experience is talking with the fish in the aquarium as you wait, and wait, and wait for the next part of the exam. Naturally, no one will tell you anything about what they have learned from the tests. You have to see more doctors first, and take more tests.

    One of my favorite parts is the eye exam near the beginning, where you get both a "eyesight and solvency test." You have to be able to see and pay for the exam to pass.

    Pretty soon all of your clothes have been replaced with a gown, and you cannot easily escape even though that seems like the right thing to do. Each test seems worse than the last. The stress test adds stress as well as measuring it. You smell foods, and any that smell good are taken off your diet.

    At some point, you make such an impression with your test results that they wheel you around in a wheelchair.

    Pretty soon you've got so many prescriptions it takes two pages of poetry to cover all of the directions.

    Before you can escape you have to fill out more forms so that the bills will be paid by your estate if you don't survive.

    Dr. Seuss concludes with "you're in pretty good shape for the shape you are in." That's the most we can hope for from America's answer to afternoon tea for the Medicare set.

    Having been through such check-ups myself and having a father whose retirement consists of keeping doctors in business at 84 (he calls it 21 for the 4th time), I can definitely appreciate the humor here. Hopefully, you will too.

    I just wish we had stayed in Fotta-fa-Zee rather than the Doctor's office.

    The satirical concept is great, but the poetry, whimsy, and illustrations make it all even better. It should cheer up anyone who spends a lot of time visiting doctors.

    Banish your misconception stalls about aging and medical care with humor!

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