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Just Listen Podcast: The Dog That Bit People

James Grover Thurber, born December 8, 1894, was an American cartoonist, author, humorist, journalist, playwright, and celebrated wit. He was best known for his cartoons and short stories, published mainly in The New Yorker and collected in his numerous books.

Thurber was one of the most popular humorists of his time and celebrated the comic frustrations and eccentricities of ordinary people, with an especial affection for small husbands with immense, bullying wives. Thurber described his mother as a "born comedian" and "one of the finest comic talents I think I have ever known." She was a practical joker and, on one occasion, pretended to be crippled and attended a faith healer revival, only to jump up and proclaim herself healed.

When Thurber was seven years old, he and one of his brothers were playing a game of William Tell, when his brother shot James in the eye with an arrow. He lost that eye, and the injury later caused him to become almost entirely blind. He was unable to participate in sports and other activities in his childhood because of this injury and instead developed a creative mind which he used to express himself in writings.

In addition to being one of the most prolific and foremost humorists of the twentieth century, James Thurber was also known as a crack code clerk for the U.S. Department of State in both Washington, D.C., and Paris, from 1918-1920. The last twenty years of Thurber's life were filled with material and professional success in spite of his blindness. He died of complications from pneumonia in November of 1961, leaving behind a plethora of books for both children and adults, short stories, and cartoons.

And now, for today’s story, James Thurber’s “The Dog That Bit People”…we begin….