May 1 is Mother Goose Day! The beloved Mother Goose rhymes are a collection of nursery rhymes, political slogans and even drinking songs, dating between the 9th and 18th centuries in Europe. The first English version of the stories was published in 1729 and the first American version appeared in 1787. Since then, the stories have been a childhood staple for generations of children.
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Perhaps our modern Mother Goose is Oprah Winfrey. After all, Oprah seems to be a modern mother figure who tells us what we should and should not do. So, here are 10 ways that Mother Goose is like Oprah
One of the hardest things in life to learn are which bridges to cross and which bridges to burn. —Oprah Winfrey
Tommy’s tears and Mary’s fears
Will make them old before their years. —Mother Goose
1. Mother Goose tells it like it is. In Tom, Tom, the Piper’s Son, Tom steals a pig and gets beaten up as punishment. On a recent promo for the new reality series, Lindsay, Oprah tells Lindsay lohan to cut the B.S. and show up for work. Of course we don’t advocate beating children, but both Mama G. and Oprah teach us to clean up our acts.
2. Mother Goose is timeless. Children have been delighting to Mother Goose Rhymes since at least the late 1500s. Oprah has managed to remain fresh and relevant since her very first show in 1986. Can we even imagine life without Oprah? Impossible!
3. Mother Goose is a little sassy. Mother Goose has a sassy side. Just read Sing A Song of Sixpence, in which the maid gets her nose pecked off. In The Butler, Oprah plays the butler’s sassy, impertinent wife, and got an Emmy nomination for it.
4. Mother Goose encourages reading. Mother Goose stories have often been used to teach children to read. Oprah has hosted two wildly successful book clubs.
5. Mother Goose knows how to paint a picture with words. In Little Boy Blue, Mother Goose paints a word picture of a little farm boy trying to skip out on his chores. For Oprah’s ability as a “word painter,” listen to her 2013 Harvard Commencement Speech.
6. Mother Goose doesn’t suffer fools. Fools in Mother Goose generally get treated badly. Just remember Simple Simon, in which poor Simon can’t seem to get anything right. When a French furniture store refused to wait on Oprah, apparently because she was black, she initiated a devastating boycott of the company. Ultimately, the company president apologized to her on air.
8. If Mother Goose were alive today she’d definitely have her own talk show. It seems like every celebrity these days eventually gets a talk show. Mother Goose, if alive today, would probably have one too. She could have guests like Little Jack Horner or Wee Willy Winky.
9. Mother Goose has made a huge impact on the literary world. Mother Goose has a tremendous literary tradition. Oprah’s Book Club has promoted reading among millions of modern adults.
10. Mother Goose knows children are the future. Mother Goose, or the various authors that recorded her stories down through the ages, understood that children are the future and that they need to be taught in a fun manner. Many of Oprah’s shows deal with children and their happiness.