anne mikolay 2012 120I awoke this morning with a migraine, and as my fellow migraineurs will confirm, a migraine jumbles the thoughts and clouds the brain. (Or does it first cloud the brain and then jumble the thoughts a la the chicken or the egg quandary?) As I sit here attempting to focus, my muddled mind is bouncing all over the place, thinking of this, thinking of that, and making little sense.

First up: Dr. Seuss. Friday, February 28th is Dr. Seuss Day. While school children read Dr. Seuss books and dress up in silly, white and red hats, I must admit I never quite understood the Dr. Seuss phenomenon. With all due respect to the highly educated, renown Theodor Seuss Geisel, aka Dr. Seuss, I never cared for his books. In fact, I never would have known the 28th is the author's birthday had I not seen a sign advising deli customers to order their green bagels in time for Friday. When I inquired why I would need a green bagel, the clerk behind the counter laughed and said, “Green eggs and ham! Dr. Seuss!” Ah, yes. “Green Eggs and Ham”, a popular book indeed! But dare I say it? Acclaim notwithstanding, “Green Eggs and Ham” sounds to me as though written whilst in the throes of migraine. “I am Sam...I am Sam...Sam I am...That Sam-I-am...” Okay! We get it! You're Sam. And you don't like green eggs and ham.

Next up: silly cultural studies. While the world watches the Ukraine crumble and debates its global impact going forward, Time Magazine names the most influential candy bar of all time. Drum roll please! It's the Kit Kat bar! According to Time, Kit Kat was the first candy marketed under the concept of sharing and thus wins the honor. This surprises me - perhaps because I don't like Kit Kat bars and never even heard of Kit Kat until I was well beyond trick-or-treating age, or perhaps because I remember a 1980s commercial for Reese's Peanut Butter Cups that equally encouraged sharing. (What baby boomer could forget “you got your peanut butter in my chocolate!”?) Reese's, introduced in 1928, predates Kit Kat, introduced in 1935, and in my humble opinion, is a better candy. Admittedly, I know nothing about their individual marketing strategies and even without a migraine wouldn't care to investigate, but I think naming Kit Kat, or any candy bar for that matter, “most influential of all time” is stupid. How much money was wasted on this study? I wonder. Dare I say it? Gimme a break!

Lastly: middle-aged columnists who voice their unwanted opinions while suffering a migraine. Who cares what I think? My declaration that candy/cultural studies are trivial excludes the value of history. If I want to know what life was like for my dad growing up in the early 20th century or for my ancestor during his civil war days, I need to know details...what they wore, what they saw, what they ate, and yes, what candy they preferred. In the future, someone will surely want to know the same about those of us living in the 21st century, and cultural studies, never trivial, will supply the answers. As for Dr. Seuss, well, a lowly writer such as myself with limited audience has no place criticizing the beloved Dr. Seuss, who instinctively knew what delighted children: rhyme, repetition, funny cats in stovepipe hats, colorful cartoon-like creatures, and green eggs and ham. Dr. Seuss achieved every writer's dream, to create something lasting, meaningful, that survives the ages. I should be so blessed.

So...if I have offended Dr. Seuss lovers or candy aficionados...gimme a break! I am Anne...I am Anne...Anne I am...I don't like green eggs and ham...or migraines.