“You seem so sad, Eeyore.”
“Sad? Why should I be sad? It’s my birthday. The happiest day of the year.”
“Your birthday?” said Pooh in great surprise.
“Of course it is. Can’t you see? Look at all the presents I have had.” He waved a foot from side to side. “Look at the birthday cake. Candles and pink sugar.”
Pooh looked–first to the right and then to the left.
“Presents?” said Pooh. “Birthday cake?” said Pooh. “Where?”
“Can’t you see them?”
“No,” said Pooh.
“Neither can I,” said Eeyore. “Joke,” he explained. “Ha ha!”
Pooh scratched his head, being a little puzzled by all this.
“But is it really your birthday?” he asked.
“Oh! Well, Many happy returns of the day, Eeyore.”
“And many happy returns to you, Pooh Bear.”
“But it isn’t my birthday.”
“No, it’s mine.”
“But you said ‘Many happy returns’–“
“Well, why not? You don’t always want to be miserable on my birthday, do you?”
“Oh, I see,” said Pooh.
“It’s bad enough.” said Eeyore. almost breaking down “being miserable myself, what with no presents and no cake and no candles, and no proper notice taken of me at all, but if everybody else is going to be miserable too—-“
This was too much for Pooh. “Stay there!” he called to Eeyore, as he turned and hurried back home as quick as he could; for he felt that he must get poor Eeyore a present of some sort at once, and he could always think of a proper one afterwards.
Outside his house he found Piglet, jumping up and down trying to reach the knocker.
“Hallo, Piglet,” he said.
“Hallo, Pooh,” said Piglet.
“What are you trying to do?”
“I was trying to reach the knocker,” said Piglet. “I just came round—-“
“Let me do it for you,” said Pooh kindly. So he reached up and knocked at the door. “I have just seen Eeyore is in a Very Sad Condition, because it’s his birthday, and nobody has taken any notice of it, and he’s very Gloomy–you know what Eeyore is–and there he was, and—- What a long time whoever lives here is answering this door.” And he knocked again.
“But Pooh,” said Piglet, “it’s your own house!”
“Oh!” said Pooh. “So it is,” he said. “Well, let’s go in.”
So in they went. The first thing Pooh did was to go to the cupboard to see if he had quite a small jar of honey left; and he had, so he took it down.
“I’m giving this to Eeyore,” he explained, “as a present. What are you going to give?”
“Couldn’t I give it too?” said Piglet. “From both of us?”
“No,” said Pooh. “That would not be a good plan.”
“All right, then, I’ll give him a balloon. I’ve got one left from my party. I’ll go and get it now, shall I?”
“That, Piglet, is a very good idea. It is just what Eeyore wants to cheer him up. Nobody can be uncheered with a balloon.”
Milne, A. A. Winnie The Pooh. Methuen & Co Ltd (London), 1926.
Chapter IV, In which Eeyore has a Birthday and gets Two Presents.