On This Date in History:

Milne, Christopher Robin and Pooh

Milne, Christopher Robin and Pooh

Hawaii became the 50th state on this date  in 1959…but the new flag with the 50th star wasn’t official until 1960. Guess the Betsy Ross’s of the day were a bit slow. On this date in 1920, the third child of Alan Alexander (AA) and Dorothy Milne and was born in London.  

Alexander Milne was a pacifist but he still ended up in the English Army during World War I. He served as a signaling officer and found himself on the front line in France for part of 1916.  He was sent home after developing a fever.  After his recovery, he was assigned to a signaling company at Fort Southwick where he remained until he was discharged in 1919.  Prior to the war, he has served as an assistant editor at Punch magazine.  With is discharge, he quit punch and decided to concentrate on writing plays.  In 1923, he wrote a poem that was published in Vanity Fair and it centered around his son, Christopher Robin.  That whetted his appetite for poetry and in 1924, he wrote a book of children’s poems. In that book, he had a poem about a teddy bear.  In the poem, the bear apparently had a weight problem because, “however hard he tries, grows tubby without exercise.”

Milne Wasn't Too Keen on his Pooh Fame

Milne Wasn't Too Keen on his Pooh Fame

In 1925, the Milnes bought a farm in Sussex, UK next to a 100 acre wood and, by that time, Christopher had accumulated a number of stuffed animals.  His first furry friend was a small bear that he received when he was about one year old. This inspired AA Milne and he wrote a bedtime story for the Christmas Eve issue of the Evening News.  It was the first time he wrote about his son, Christopher Robin and his adventures with his teddy bear, Winnie the Pooh.    That bedtime story became the first chapter of his book in 1926 called Winnie the Pooh.  The book was followed with verses called Now We Are Six and The House at Pooh’s Corner in 1927 and 1928 respectively.  But that was all.  See, Milne was concerned for the well being of his son and his work that featured Christopher Robin had created quite a bit of publicity.  So, Milne announced that The House at Pooh’s Corner would be his last featuring Christopher Robin and Winnie the Pooh. 

The Wonderful Thing about Tigger

The Wonderful Thing about Tigger


An interesting part of the story is  that Milne never read the stories to his son.  Also, his work was not designed for children but instead he wanted to connect with the child within each of us.  A A went on to write other plays, books and poems but he is best known for the limited work relating to Winnie the Pooh.  You can tell that he’s a real artist because he was not amused that he was best known for a children’s story rather than his other work.  The plays are sometimes performed today in amateur plays but rarely in professional productions.  Yet, Winnie the Pooh is still an industry to itself with books and merchandise and tv shows.  I am curious as to who wrote such staples as Winnie the Pooh and the Blustery Day since it was not Milne.  No mind. I’m sure that the estate enjoys the royalties, which I assume roll in.   Milne died in 1956.

Now, my mother had visions of me being like Christopher Robin. I always thought the portrayal on the TV specials was like a girl. We lived in California and we had a canyon with rattle snakes and coyotes. We played there and dug underground forts, played war and had dirt clod fights. I don’t think Chris could have hung with me and my friends. As for me, I was partial to Tigger but I wonder if Tigger was a Milne character or was he the brain child of Walt Disney?

Weather Bottom Line:  If this was winter (and it’s not) then we would probably be in store for a snowy weekend (which we wont).   The front moved through and we didn’t receive any rain at all at my house. I did not do any analysis at all but there was some inhibiting factor that prevented us from getting any rain.  My only guess is that the clouds and light rain of the morning kept the atmosphere stable and then there was a big shot of dry air from the southwest…maybe hot dry air aloft because I noted a bunch of cumulus in the afternoon without much vertical development.  Anyway, obviously, the Thursday forecast was a bust..probably one of the worst in recent memory. 

Now, this deep trof sets up for the weekend and the parent low is in the Great Lakes with a big vort lobe that will swing around.  It will produce a lot of clouds.  There is not much moisture but it could squeeze out a few showers from time to time for Saturday and Sunday.  If it were colder, it would be snow showers.  As it is, look for temperatures in the 70’s in the afternoon with the clouds and also overnight lows in the 50’s and low 60’s.


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