Dr Seuss and Nerds

nerd-311852_640What has Dr Seuss have in common with the term Nerd? Some say nothing, others remind us he created it and point to its first use in, If I Ran the Zoo: Ā “And then, just to show them, I’ll sail to Ka-Troo, and bring back an it-kutch, a preep, and a proo, a nerkle, a nerd, and a seersucker, too!”

But, experts say a 1951 publication of Newsweek gets the prize. Here, for the first time its use refers to that kind of socially maladjusted individual we’ve all come to love, so wonderfully portrayed in the person of Sheldon in “The Big Bang Theory.”

Who really knows! Maybe Dr Seuss was an avid reader of Newsweek; but then his book was published in 1950. Makes you think, doesn’t it?

Image: courtesy Pixabay


About Don

I love life. Sometimes it makes sense, other times not. Discerning its underlying patterns and beauty always provides great reward and meaning and is a passion I ineptly follow. I feel deeply attached to nature and love the sea with its distinct moods and colour and find walking along its beaches wonderfully inspiring. Writing, sketching and photography is a sheer joy for me and the blog is one of the places I am able to express these pursuits.
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21 Responses to Dr Seuss and Nerds

  1. Hariod Brawn says:

    Who knows Don? http://www.etymonline.com/index.php?term=nerd threw up an alternative theory:

    “Probably an alteration of 1940’s slang ‘nert’: ‘stupid or crazy person,’ itself an alteration of ‘nut’.”


  2. Dan Antion says:

    Dr. Seuss gave us so many words. I wouldn’t put this one out of reach for him. I wear “nerd” like a badge of honor around my house and at work. If I thought Dr. Seuss was talking about me, it would only make me feel better. Thanks for the head-scratcher Don

    Liked by 1 person

  3. Great creative souls are usually pretty nerdy. They live on the edges of things. Dr Seuss was no exception. He lived in his own world which he was kind enough to share with us.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. I’d prefer to think it was the delightfully imaginative Dr Seuss who gave us so many words and visions of craziness. šŸ™‚


  5. Val Boyko says:

    I’m more of a proo myself, although I come from a long line of nerkles.
    Thanks for the smile Don!


  6. Whatever Theodor Seuss Geisel is (I use the present tense because as long as his words live, so does he) proo, preep, nerd, nerkle, we should be have more just like him. I believe Dr. Seuss did more for early readers and helped more slow, disinterested or troubled readers than any other American writer. More of my high school students wrote their Thank You letters to Dr. Seuss for helping them love language and reading than to parents, teachers, reading mentors, other writers, etc. combined.
    OH, THE PLACES YOU’LL GO! is my favorite book, and I still thank him for Oh, The Places He Took Us with his words.


    • Don says:

      Thanks for a wonderful comment Marylin. My children grew up on Dr Seuss’s books. Our two favourites were, Horton The Elephant and Yurtle The Turtle. They also loved The Pale Green Pants. What a wonderful children’s author.


  7. My children loved reading Dr Seuss books, he opened their mind and their imagination. Nothing nerdy about that Don! šŸ™‚


  8. I think it was Dr. Seuss Don! šŸ˜‰
    Diana xo


  9. nrhatch says:

    Dr. Seuss rocks. And that’s no flimflamfloogle!


  10. Susan Feniak says:

    Thank you all for making me giggle!! šŸ™‚


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