Christmas is a wonderful time to get in touch with old friends, to catch up over a warm mug of hot chocolate, to say "How have you been? I've really missed you!" Well, we've really missed you!
This year, to celebrate the season, we'd like to make this small Christmas offering: a reading of How The Grinch Stole Christmas by the one-and-only Dr. Seuss. But Christine is Christine, JJ is JJ, and this is Talk Description to Me, so in our reading of the classic Christmas tale, a few descriptions of the picture book illustrations have been woven into the text in playful Seussian rhyme!
Now let's pour that hot chocolate and catch up, shall we?!
Every Who Down in Whoville Liked Christmas a lot...
But the Grinch, who lived just north of Whoville, Did NOT!
The Grinch hated Christmas! The whole Christmas season!
Now, please don't ask why. No one quite knows the reason.
It could be his head wasn't screwed on just right.
It could be, perhaps, that his shoes were too tight.
Maybe because his legs were short sticks,
Nastier then yesterday’s old used toothpicks.
It could because he was shaped like a pear,
From head down to toes all covered in hair.
Or ‘cause his was the neck of a pencil-necked geek,
Or ‘cause he wore no clothes, not this nor last week.
But I think that the most likely reason of all,
May have been that his heart was two sizes too small.
But, Whatever the reason, His heart or his shoes,
He stood there on Christmas Eve, hating the Whos,
Staring down from his cave with a sour, Grinchy frown,
At the warm lighted windows below in their town
For he knew every Who down in Whoville beneath,
Was busy now, hanging a mistletoe wreath.
"And they're hanging their stockings!" he snarled with a sneer, "Tomorrow is Christmas! It's practically here!"
Then he growled, with his Grinch fingers nervously drumming, "I MUST find some way to stop Christmas from coming!"
For Tomorrow, he knew… all the Who girls and boys, Would wake bright and early. They'd rush for their toys!
And then! Oh, the noise! Oh, the Noise! Noise! Noise! Noise! That's one thing he hated! The NOISE! NOISE! NOISE! NOISE!
“They’ll put skis on their feet and slide down the stairs,
They’ll bang on big djembes, bongos and snares.
They’ll wheel round on roller skates playing lacrosse,
They’ll ride round on trains, blowing horns, of course.”
Then the Whos, young and old, would sit down to a feast.
And they'd feast! And they'd feast! And they'd FEAST! FEAST! FEAST! FEAST!
They would feast on Who-pudding, and rare Who-roast beast.
Which was something the Grinch couldn't stand in the least!
A line of Who chefs in aprons and hats
Would parade in the food on platters, in stacks.
With their wide eyes closed and their big goofy smiles,
They’d have knives and forks poised, with no sense of style.
And THEN They'd do something He liked least of all!
Every Who down in Whoville, the tall and the small,
Would stand close together, with Christmas bells ringing.
They'd stand hand-in-hand. And the Whos would start singing!
They'd sing! And they'd sing!
And they'd SING! SING! SING! SING!
And the more the Grinch thought of this Who Christmas-Sing, The more the Grinch thought, "I must stop this whole thing!"
"Why, for fifty-three years I've put up with it now!" "I MUST stop this Christmas from coming! But HOW?"
Then he got an idea! An awful idea!
THE GRINCH GOT A WONDERFUL, AWFUL IDEA!
"I know just what to do!" The Grinch laughed in his throat.
And he made a quick Santy Claus hat and a coat.
And he chuckled, and clucked, "What a great Grinchy trick!"
"With this coat and this hat, I look just like Saint Nick!"
"All I need is a reindeer..." The Grinch looked around.
But, since reindeer are scarce, there was none to be found.
Did that stop the old Grinch? No! The Grinch simply said,
"If I can't find a reindeer, I'll make one instead!"
So he called his dog, Max. Then he took some red thread,
And he tied a big horn on the top of his head.
THEN He loaded some bags And some old empty sacks,
On a ramshackle sleigh And he hitched up old Max.
Then the Grinch said, "Giddap!" And the sleigh started down,
Toward the homes where the Whos Lay a-snooze in their town.
All their windows were dark. Quiet snow filled the air.
All the Whos were all dreaming sweet dreams without care.
When he came to the first little house on the square.
"This is stop number one," the old Grinchy Claus hissed,
And he climbed to the roof, empty bags in his fist.
Then he slid down the chimney. A rather tight pinch.
But, if Santa could do it, then so could the Grinch.
He got stuck only once, for a moment or two.
Then he stuck his head out of the fireplace flue.
Where the little Who stockings all hung in a row.
"These stockings," he grinned, "are the first things to go!"
Then he slithered and slunk, with a smile most unpleasant,
Around the whole room, and he took every present!
Pop guns! And bicycles! Roller skates! Drums!
Checkerboards! Tricycles! Popcorn! And plums!
And he stuffed them in bags. Then the Grinch, very nimbly,
Stuffed all the bags, one by one, up the chimney!
Then he slunk to the icebox. He took the Whos' feast!
He took the Who-pudding! He took the roast beast!
He cleaned out that icebox as quick as a flash.
Why, that Grinch even took their last can of Who-hash!
Then he stuffed all the food up the chimney with glee.
"And NOW!" grinned the Grinch, "I will stuff up the tree!"
And the Grinch grabbed the tree, and he started to shove,
When he heard a small sound like the coo of a dove.
He turned around fast, and he saw a small Who!
Little Cindy-Lou Who, who was not more than two.
The Grinch had been caught by this tiny Who daughter,
Who'd got out of bed for a cup of cold water.
She stared at the Grinch and said, "Santy Claus, why,”
"Why are you taking our Christmas tree? WHY?"
But, you know, that old Grinch was so smart and so slick,
He thought up a lie, and he thought it up quick!
"Why, my sweet little tot," the fake Santy Claus lied,
"There's a light on this tree that won't light on one side."
"So I'm taking it home to my workshop, my dear."
"I'll fix it up there. Then I'll bring it back here."
And his fib fooled the child. Then he patted her head,
And he got her a drink and he sent her to bed.
And when CindyLou Who went to bed with her cup,
HE went to the chimney and stuffed the tree up!
Then the last thing he took Was the log for their fire!
Then he went up the chimney, himself, the old liar.
On their walls he left nothing but hooks and some wire.
And the one speck of food That he left in the house,
Was a crumb that was even too small for a mouse.
Then He did the same thing To the other Whos' houses
Leaving crumbs Much too small For the other Whos' mouses!
It was quarter past dawn... All the Whos, still a-bed,
All the Whos, still a-snooze When he packed up his sled,
Packed it up with their presents! The ribbons! The wrappings!
The tags! And the tinsel! The trimmings! The trappings!
Three thousand feet up! Up the side of Mount Crumpit,
He rode with his load to the tiptop to dump it!
On his big open sleigh he carried their stuff
In a giant red sack overflowing with fluff.
Trees laden with tinsel, piles of teetering presents,
of baseball bats, neck ties, pots and stuffed pheasants.
The sleigh perched improbably on the tall snowy peak,
Making everything ‘round it look so sad and bleak.
"Pooh-Pooh to the Whos!" he was grinchishly humming.
"They're finding out now that no Christmas is coming!"
"They're just waking up! I know just what they'll do!"
"Their mouths will hang open a minute or two,
Then the Whos down in Whoville will all cry Boo-Hoo!"
"That's a noise," grinned the Grinch, "That I simply MUST hear!"
So he paused. And the Grinch put his hand to his ear.
And he did hear a sound rising over the snow.
It started in low. Then it started to grow.
But the sound wasn't sad! Why, this sound sounded merry!
It couldn't be so! But it WAS merry! VERY!
He stared down at Whoville! The Grinch popped his eyes!
Then he shook! What he saw was a shocking surprise!
Every Who down in Whoville, the tall and the small,
Was singing! Without any presents at all!
They all clasped hands, one to another,
A bridge of song cross the snow, sister and brother.
Wide mouths open wider in song,
Their voices ringing out like Christmas Who gongs.
He HADN'T stopped Christmas from coming! IT CAME!
Somehow or other, it came just the same!
And the Grinch, with his grinch-feet ice-cold in the snow,
Stood puzzling and puzzling: "How could it be so?"
"It came with out ribbons! It came without tags!"
"It came without packages, boxes or bags!"
And he puzzled three hours, till his puzzler was sore.
Then the Grinch thought of something he hadn't before!
"Maybe Christmas," he thought, "doesn't come from a store." "Maybe Christmas...perhaps...means a little bit more!"
And what happened then? Well...in Whoville they say,
That the Grinch's small heart Grew three sizes that day!
And the minute his heart didn't feel quite so tight,
He whizzed with his load through the bright morning light,
And he brought back the toys! And the food for the feast!
And he, HE HIMSELF! The Grinch carved the roast beast!