25 December 2005

Happy Birthday Pooh

On this day in 1925, a bear was born. His name was Winnie-the-Pooh.
As regular readers of The Capital Letter will have noticed, we like bears around here. We like them a lot. But the bear we like best of all, and have for many many years now, is Pooh, the Bear of Very Little Brain.

On Christmas Eve 1925, the very first Winnie-the-Pooh story was published in the London Evening News. It was the story of The Wrong Sort of Bees. (You know the one: "Tut-tut, looks like rain.") That, of course, makes Winnie-the-Pooh eighty years old. BBC News has the details. Congratulations, sir, and Happy Birthday.

It seems appropriate to end with my all time favourite Winnie-the-Pooh quote. It's from Chapter Three of Winnie the Pooh: "In which Pooh and Piglet go hunting and nearly catch a Woozle." Here goes:
"The Piglet lived in a very grand house in the middle of a beech-tree, and the beech-tree was in the middle of the Forest, and the Piglet lived in the middle of the house. Next to his house was a piece of broken board which had: "TRESPASSERS W" on it. When Christopher Robin asked the Piglet what it meant, he said it was his grandfather's name, and had been in the family for a long time. Christopher Robin said you couldn't be called Trespassers W, and Piglet said yes, you could, because his grandfather was, and it was short for Trespassers Will, which was short for Trespassers William. And his grandfather had had two names in case he lost one - Trespassers after an uncle, and William after Trespassers."

[Hat-tip to Idiot/Savant at No Right Turn.]