Tuesday 19 June 2012

Best literary birthdays

As you read this, I will be camping in Devon, in a large but hopefully not too damp field with 130 teenagers.  Happy birthday to me!  I had a mini-celebration with some of my family on Sunday, and when I opened one of the presents from my mum - an empty jar ("useful to put ribbons or buttons in, I thought") - I was put in mind of my favourite literary birthday: that of Eeyore in Winnie-The-Pooh. 

If you're unfamiliar with the story (and if you are, then please read it as soon as possible, it's a wonderful book), Piglet and Pooh try to bring Eeyore presents to cheer him up because, says Pooh, "Eeyore is in a very sad condition, because it's his birthday and nobody has taken any notice of it."  But Pooh becomes distracted while carrying a jar of honey to see Eeyore, and eats the contents, and Piglet trips and falls, bursting the balloon he wanted to give.  The two gifts on their own are quite useless, but together... well, Eeyore discovers that his burst balloon fits perfectly into his empty honey pot, and spends his birthday "taking the balloon out, and putting it back again, as happy as could be..."

I also love Harry Potter's eleventh birthday, in Harry Potter & The Philosopher's Stone, when the orphan Harry discovers his true nature and receives a birthday cake for the first time in his life.

What are your favourite literary birthdays?


  1. Well, cuz, you beat me to it; those are my 2 favourites. I remember reading Winnie-the-Pooh for the first time while at your house, too many years ago to count.. :D

  2. Really?! How cool. I re-read Winnie-The-Pooh on a semi-regular basis and never fail to laugh out loud at it.