What 'Oh, The Places You'll Go!' Would Say If It Were Written Today (Probably)
Graduation is upon us, and that means thousands of high school and college graduates are tossing their caps, saying their goodbyes, and, undoubtedly, unwrapping a copy of Oh, The Places You'll Go! at their grad parties. Since its original publication 25 years ago, Dr. Seuss' bright, cheerful illustrations and words of thoughtful advice and encouragement have made the book a classic.
But in the nearly three decades since it was written, a lot has changed. There's the Internet, for one huge cultural shift. Beyond that, graduates today are as uncertain about their futures as those 25 years ago, but in different ways. They're more educated, but in much bigger debt. They're more diverse, more entrepreneurial, but allegedly more self-involved. They're not very religious, but they all agree that Beyoncé is an angel sent to live on Earth. They're leaving the nest, smartphones in hand, but they have no idea where to go next.
So, in honor of the graduation season and 25 years of Oh, The Places You'll Go!, here are 11 of the books greatest lines, rewritten for today's graduates:
Congratulations! Today's is your day. You're off to Great Places! After one more episode on Netflix, anyway.
Original Seuss: "Congratulations! Today is your day. You're off to Great Places! You're off and away!"
You have smartphone in hand. You know what you know. You can get yourself anywhere Google Maps shows.
Original Seuss: "You have brains in your head. You have feet in your shoes. You can steer yourself any direction you choose."
But first you'll look up and down Tinder. Look it over with care. About some you will say, "Girl, you can't go there." With your profile full of selfies in just the right light, you've got too much going for you to always swipe right.
Original Seuss: "You'll look up and down streets. Look 'em over with care. About some you will say, "I don't choose to go there." With your head full of brains and your shoes full of feet, you're too smart to go down a not-so-good street."
And you may not find anyone whose number you'll want in your phone. In that case, of course, you'll be fine on your own. It can be better that way, no matter what people say.
Original Seuss: "And you may not find any you'll want to go down. In that case, of course, you'll head straight out of town. It's opener there in the wide open air."
And if you still live with your parents, don't worry. Don't stew. Just know you're not alone, plenty of others do, too.
Original Seuss: "And when things start to happen, don't worry. Don't stew. Just go right along, you'll start happening too."
You won't lag behind, because your Wi-Fi's top speed. You'll pass the whole gang just by resisting legal weed. Wherever you fly, you'll be the best of the best. Wherever you go, you'll be truly #blessed.
Original Seuss: "You won't lag behind, because you'll have the speed. You'll pass the whole gang and you'll soon take the lead. Wherever you fly, you'll be the best of the best. Wherever you go, you will top all the rest."
BUT You can get so confused that you race around Pinterest 'til you're numb in the face, then at 2 a.m. shift to Reddit, a weirdish wild space, headed, I fear, toward the most useless place — MySpace.
Original Seuss: "You can get so confused that you'll start to race down long wiggled roads at break-necking pace and grind on for miles across weirdish wild space, headed, I fear, toward the most useless place."
No! That's not for you! Somehow you'll leave your apartment (but forget an umbrella). You'll find the bright places, aka Coachella. Then you'll get serious about gainful employment, sigh. Take the first job you get, text your friends, "Whyyyyyy???" And then strangely you'll actually kick ass, no lie.
Original Seuss: "No! That's not for you! Somehow you'll escape all that waiting and staying.You'll find the bright places where Boom Bands are playing. With banner flip-flapping, once more you'll ride high! Ready for anything under the sky. Ready because you're that kind of guy!"
Oh the places you'll go! There is fun to be done! There are moments to Instagram, more than just one. And the magical things you can do with that app might make you the subject of a Kanye rap. Fame! You'll be famous as the Kardashians can be, with the whole wide world watching you on TV.
Original Seuss: “Oh the places you'll go! There is fun to be done! There are points to be scored. There are games to be won. And the magical things you can do with that ball will make you the winning-est winner of all. Fame! You'll be famous as famous can be, with the whole wide world watching you win on TV.”
So be sure when you step, bring iced coffee and snax. And remember that life's basically your own Beyoncé act. Just never forget your inner geek. And maybe try to keep your eyebrows on fleek.
Original Seuss: "So be sure when you step, step with care and great tact. And remember that life's A Great Balancing Act. Just never forget to be dexterous and deft. And never mix up your right foot with your left.”
And will you succeed? Yes! You will, indeed! (100 percent. Just, again, skip the weed.) Kid, you'll move mountains.
Original Seuss: "And will you succeed? Yes! You will, indeed! (98 and ¾ percent guaranteed). Kid, you'll move mountains.”
Images: Giphy (11)