“[My] horn-rimmed glasses and my Ohio accent betray me, even when I sit on the terrasses of little tropical cafes, wearing a pith helmet, staring straight ahead, and twitching a muscle in my jaw […] Nobody from Columbus has ever made a first rate wanderer in the [Joseph] Conradean tradition [but] some of them have been fairly good at disappearing for a few days to turn up in a hotel in Louisville with a bad headache and no recollection of how they got there.”
James Thurber was one of America’s most famous humorists, so intwined with his hometown that for many he remains synonymous with Columbus.
A graduate of East High School and The Ohio State University, Thurber began his career as a journalist at the Columbus Dispatch and Chicago Tribune before becoming a prominent contributor to The New Yorker in 1927.
Writings & Drawings (1996) collects dozens of essays, stories, and cartoons from Thurber’s many books, from Is Sex Necessary (1929) through The Years with Ross (1958), as well as several previously uncollected pieces.
He died in 1961.
If you enjoyed Writings and Drawings, we suggest these Ohio side trips:
- Phoebe Robinson’s You Can’t Touch My Hair And Other Things I Still Have to Explain
- PJ O’Rourke’s Holidays in Hell
- Andy Borowitz’s Profiles in Ignorance: How America’s Politicians Got Dumb and Dumber