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Notable New     Yorkers
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Bennett CerfBennett Cerf
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child in the last fifteen years. I understand, if you're caught talking to a child, you can't be on the committee to pick the prizes. The fact that you have never given one of these awards to Dr. Seuss doesn't hurt Dr. Seuss. It just makes the awards ridiculous.” Well, this created quite a comotion. Louise was outraged with me. She said, “You insulted librarians.” I said, “That was my intention.” But all this bruhaha didn't do a bit of good. Ted never got an award although his books sell in the millions.

The story of Ted Geisel is fascinating. He was studying. He was a Dartmouth graduate and he went to Oxford to complete his studies. He met Helen there, his wife to be. They fell in love and were married and lived on nothing. Neither of them had any money. Ted came back and was doing little pictures for the old Life and Judge magazines. Standard Oil of New Jersey started a new product to kill mosquitoes called Flit, and they had a campaign. They got the slogan, “Quick, Henry, the Flit.” They wanted to have some pictures for this campaign, and a contest, I think, was staged. Ted Geisel submitted some pictures for the campaign. He was shown into the office of one of the vice-presidents of the Standard Oil Company of New Jersey, who unhesitatingly declared, “These pictures are terrible. Get out. They're awful.” He threw them on the desk to be sent back. A few minutes after Ted Geisel had left, however, very despondently, this vice-president's wife came in, saw Geisel's pictures and was simply delighted with them. The husband, in amazement, said, “I think they're terrible.” She said, “They're

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