I fell in love with Ernest Shepard's deceptively simple sketchy pencil illustrations and played games of Pooh sticks every time I came to a bridge or gutter filled with water.
This might be a bit blasphemous but I love the Disney incarnations almost as much as the originals. The first animated episode so brilliantly incorporated the book format; Pooh climbing through the paragraphs, the letters washing away in the rain, the narrator interacting with the characters. Amazing stuff.
A year or so ago when I was in NYC I made a trip to the public library where the stuffed animals that were the inspiration are now housed. And it was an experience I won't forget, taking me back to my childhood in an instant, yet looking at their worn and shabby appearances made me feel older than my years.
Happy birthday to a literary genius and the shaper of many a childhood.
Let's finish things off with a clip of the catchy theme song to get stuck in your head. You're welcome.