Thursday, February 27, 2014


March 2 is around the corner, and that marks the annual celebration—via Read Across America Day—of the birthday of Dr. Seuss. This time around, he would have turned 110 years old. So we at the Why Not 100 are going to honor the man by taking a trip.

Someone, somewhere, should create a Seuss globe—a whimsical world of Seussian places, from Boober Bay and the Kingdom of Binn to North Nitch and South Stitch. It would be impossible, of course. And it would have to be some sort of oblong-trapezoidal-misshapen bit of a whimsy-world, in keeping with Dr. Seuss’s perspective of things. But maybe somebody can conjure up some sort of magnificent map.

Meanwhile, this will have to do: I scoured Theodor Geisel’s catalog of books and came up with 62 places mentioned (or in the case of several, serving as the setting) in the pages of Dr. Seuss’s daring imagination. The first ones are iconic, of course. The others? I ranked them according to how much I love the names:

1. Who-ville (Horton Hears a Who, The Grinch Who Stole Christmas)
Civilization on a speck of dust. Christmas cheer, presents or not. Small folks, big hearts.

2. Mulberry Street (And To Think That I Saw it On Mulberry Street)
Where else can you find zebra-drawn chariots, a Rajah with rubies, a big brass band, a big magician doing tricks, and a fellow with a ten-foot beard? No surprise that (look it up) Mulberry Street intersects with Bliss.

3. The Jungle of Nool (Horton Hears a Who)
Home of some hard-hearted folks, like Mrs. Kangaroo and the Wickersham Brothers, but redeemed by the perspective and persistence of a proud pachyderm.

4. The Street of the Lifted Lorax (The Lorax)
“And deep in the Grickle-grass, some people say, if you look deep enough you can still see today, where the Lorax once stood just as long as it could before somebody lifted the Lorax away.”

5. Kingdom of Didd (Bartholomew Cubbins books)
In Dr. Seuss’s two books about Bartholomew Cubbins, this kingdom is ruled by idiot King Derwin. The whole place is almost destroyed by Oobleck falling from the heavens until the king apologizes for believing he should rule the sky, too.

6. Kingdom of Binn (The King’s Stilts)
King Birtram’s land below sea level, living a precarious existence (sound familiar). “The kingdom was a low one; the sea was a high one; and only Dike Trees kept the sea from pouring in.”

7. The Waiting Place (Oh, The Places You’ll Go!)
“For people just waiting. Waiting for a train to go or a bus to come, or a plane to go or the mail to come, or the rain to go or the phone to ring, or the snow to snow or waiting around for a Yes or a No or waiting for their hair to grow.” A metaphor for complacency.

8. Island of Gwark (If I Ran the Zoo)
9. West Upper Ben-Deezing (If I Ran the Circus)
10. Desert of Drize (Do You Know How Lucky You Are?)
11. Foona-Lagoona (Dr. Seuss’s Sleep Book)
12. Ocean of Olf (If I Ran the Circus)
13. Kaverns of Krock (Did I Ever Tell You How Lucky You Are?)
14. Pompelmoose Pass (I Had Trouble in Getting to Solla Sollew)
15. Mystic Mountain Neeka-Tave (Bartholomew Cubbins and the Oobleck)
16. Bumble-Tub Creek (Dr. Seuss’s Sleep Book)
17. Fotta-fa-Zee (You’re Only Old Once)
18. West Gee-Hossa-Flat (Hunches in Bunches)
19. Solla Sollew (I Had Trouble in Getting to Solla Sollew)

20. Frumm (If I Ran the Circus)
21. Vipp (Oh, The Thinks You Can Think)
22. Grin-itch (What Was I Scared Of?)
23. Roover River (What Was I Scared Of?)
24. Mount Crumpit (How the Grinch Stole Christmas)
25. Lake Winna-Bango (Thidwick the Big-Hearted Moose)
26. Bunglebung Bridge (Do You Know How Lucky You Are?)
27. Boober Bay (Do You Know How Lucky You Are?)
28. River Wah-Hoo (I Had Trouble in Getting to Solla Sollew)
29. Boola Boo Ball (I Had Trouble in Getting to Solla Sollew)
30. Castle of Krupp (Dr. Seuss’s Sleep Book)
31. Vale of Va-Vode (Dr. Seuss’s Sleep Book)
32. Sala-ma-goo (The Butter Battle Book)
33. Sala-ma-Sond (Yertle the Turtle)
34. North Nitch (The Lorax)

35. South Stitch (The Lorax)
36. Grooz (Did I Ever Tell You How Lucky You Are?)
37. Brigger-ba-Root (If I Ran the Circus)
38. Na-Nupp (Oh, The Thinks You Can Think)
39. Da-Dake (Oh, The Thinks You Can Think)
40. Kartoom (If I Ran the Zoo)
41. Ruins of Ronk (Did I Ever Tell You How Lucky You Are?)
42. County of Keck (Dr. Seuss’s Sleep Book)
43. Ga-Zair (Do You Know How Lucky You Are?)
44. Herk-heimer Falls (Dr. Seuss’s Sleep Book)
45. Valley of Vung (I Had Trouble in Getting to Solla Sollew)
46. McElligot's Pool (McElligot's Pool)
47. Jungles of Jorn (If I Ran the Circus)
48. Weehawken (The Lorax)
49. Hawtch-Hawtch (Do You Know How Lucky You Are?)
50. Bumm Ridge (Do You Know How Lucky You Are?)
51. Valley of Vale (Dr. Seuss’s Sleep Book)
52. District of Doft (Dr. Seuss’s Sleep Book)
53. Ka-troo (If I Ran the Zoo)
54. Ga-Zayt (Do You Know How Lucky You Are?)
55. Zaty Highway Eight (Do You Know How Lucky You Are?)
56. The Eiffelberg Tower (Horton Hears a Who)
57. Culpepper Springs (Dr. Seuss’s Sleep Book)
58. Finnegan Fen (Dr. Seuss’s Sleep Book)
59. Mercedd (Dr. Seuss’s Sleep Book)
60. Sneelock’s Store (If I Ran the Circus)
61. Wilds of Nantucket (If I Ran the Zoo)
62. Prairie of Prax (The Zax)

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