Today on Operation Story Share we are going to interview a book-loving librarian. Let’s give a warm welcome to Dortha McCollum! **enthusiastic clapping**
Mrs. McCollum was the librarian at Berthoud Elementary School for 33 years before she retired this past spring. From what I understand, all the kids at BES would agree that she was famous for her love of Dr. Seuss. Each March, the whole library was decorated with all her Dr. Seuss stuff and she dressed up every single day.
So how many Dr. Seuss shirts do you have anyway?
I have 12 shirts that I still wear. The original two are worn out. Almost all of them were gifts. Cindy gave me the first one and also the newest one.
Tell us about your favorite Dr. Seuss book.
Horton Hatches the Egg is my all-time favorite. My mother and I heard it on the radio when I was a little girl, but we didn’t know it was a book. We thought someone was just telling a story.
I like it because Horton is such a good guy. I call him my hero. He is kind, brave, strong, responsible, respectful, and honest (means what he says and says what he means). He stays good even when lots of bad things happen to him. Maysie is the opposite. She is lazy, breaks her promise, lies about Horton and is just plain bad.
The best part is the end. Horton is surprised when he is rewarded for what he did. Maysie loses big time.
Why do you like to read?
I have liked to read since I was in the third grade. Our teacher, Mrs. Dodson, read a book about a crow that could talk. Until then I thought books were boring. I could not get excited about Dick, Jane, and Sally saying, “Look, look, look,” and “Run, run, run.”
Mrs. Dodson must have had a small class library, but I don’t remember borrowing books from the school until high school. I am sure she read to us every day. She gave me a book when I won a spelling contest. It was the first book I ever owned.
I like different kinds of books for different reasons, but I mostly want to be entertained, inspired, or maybe learn something about a time or place I will never be able to go to. Reading helps me feel better when things are not going well, makes happy times even better, is relaxing, fun, informative, and just a wonderful way to spend time.
Okay, I know I’m not supposed to talk about this anymore. But I’m a cat and that means I’m curious. Which do you like better? Cat books or dog books?
I have probably read more books about cats than dogs. Most of them were very good—a few not. But whoever the main character is, it is the story that determines whether I like it or not. The story includes character development—so whether they are mice or elephants or something else entirely, it depends on whether the author does a good job writing.
Drat! That’s just what Dewey said.
Sorry Flash, I know you wanted me to vote for cat books. But I will say that my favorite author (Guess who?) has written a great book about cats. I love its main character.
Who, ME? Little old Flash, Feline Extraordinaire? Did I ever tell you that you’re my favorite librarian in the whole world? Let’s give Dortha McCollum another round of applause for visiting with us today! What would we ever do without libraries and librarians?