Alarms And Diversions by James Thurber

By James Thurber

Thurber is one other a kind of nearly-forgotten geniuses of yank humor dependent on the New Yorker. worthy reading.


Another choice of Thurberiana, distinct in that it features a peppering of the author's favorites, additionally an creation to his
"serious comedy." one of the 32 tales lurk joyosities akin to "The woman of Orlon," "The Psychosemanticist Will See you currently,
Mr. Thurber," "Get Thee to a Monastery" and "The Moribundant existence, or become older besides Whom?"

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Sample text

Your astrogation bank will tell you! " cried the captain of a space ship to another interplanetary pilot, meaning his navigational instruments. In a fairy tale, an astrogation bank would be a "star panel," but the quality of fairy tale is nowhere to be found in these dime novels of the con­ stellations. One Sunday morning, my head aching with "kiss-close" and "swivel-chair-it," meaning, I guess, "at kissing distance" and "maul it over in your executive bra in," respectively, I stumbled upon a small radio station that had been cap­ tured by a man of God, ominous and squealful, who was begging his listeners to live on their knees, not as slaves but as supplicants.

His salary was only $2,200 a year, but it came out later that he had, in one nine-month period, banked almost $60,000. All his graft money was collected for him by Baldy Jack Rose (he had several nicknames). Becker lived in a mansion of a hGuse he had built on Olinville Avenue in the Bronx. It still stands there; Judge Peter Sheil lived in it until his death some years ago, and his widow died there last fall. Two days after the assassination, Rose turned up at Police Headquarters, and the case's most unusual figure thus made his formal advent.

I splashed more brandy into it, and now that I had got my foot in the door of the discussion I found something else to say. "There can be no doubt-" I began, but he waved it aside with his cigar. "You used the word 'immemorial' rather loosely," he said. "There was a long time, an epoch even, during which the male character and actor properly dominated our theatre. I refer to the era of the matinee idol, a term that aptly represents the decline of such giants as the ones I have already mentioned.

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