The popular humorist offers tips and truisms on travel, discussing oddly named food, Asian bus drivers in Germany, plumbing around the world, and more.
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Erma Bombeck, one of the most popular newspaper columnists in the United States and the author of numerous bestselling books, died in San Francisco on Monday, April 22, 1996 from complications following a kidney transplant earlier in the month.
Bombeck had been ill for some time. In 1992, after she underwent a mastectomy, her kidneys failed and she began dialysis at her home in Arizona. She suffered from polycystic kidney disease, a hereditary complaint. Even with her illness, Bombeck continued her weekly schedule of housework, her source for the hilarious columns and books for which she was widely loved.
"My type of humor is almost pure identification," she once told The New York Times. "A housewife reads my columns and says, 'But that's happened to me! I know just what she's talking about!'
"If I didn't do my own housework, then I have no business writing about it. I spend 90 percent of my time living scripts and 10 percent writing them."
Erma Bombeck's books include Motherhood: The Second Oldest Profession, which spent an entire year in the Number One spot on The New York Times bestseller list; Family: The Ties That Bind...and Gag!; If Life Is a Bowl of Cherries, What Am I Doing in the Pits?; I Want to Grow Hair, I Want to Grow Up, I Want to Go to Boise; When You Look Like Your Passport Photo, It's Time to Go Home, which was a New York Times bestseller and the sixth biggest selling nonfiction book of 1991; and A Marriage Made in Heaven...Or Too Tired for an Affair.
There are over twenty million copies of Erma shelved, and her thrice-weekly syndicated columns reached an estimated thirty million readers every week.
Bombeck was a regular on ABC-TV's Good Morning America for eleven years. She holds fifteen honorary doctorates, has been named to the list of the 25 Most Influential Women in America by the World Almanac since 1979, and was appointed by President Jimmy Carter to the President's Advisory Committee for Women when it was formed in 1978.
She is survived by her husband, William Bombeck, her mother, Erma Harris, and her three children.From Kirkus Reviews:
Bombeck hits the bull's-eye with this wry meditation on the art of surviving one's long-dreamed-of and hard-earned exotic vacations. Huddled in a lumpy bed in Papua New Guinea, listening to a tribal war play itself out in the street outside her hotel room, Bombeck reflects on the privileges earned by a life of hard work, prudent financial management, and a taste for adventure. Over the years, not only have she and her husband (as well as, at the worst of times, her three reluctant adolescent kids) been blessed with the chance to drag 50-pound suitcases from airport terminal to taxi queue to hotel lobby to hotel room and back again (or else, when the luggage is lost in transit, to spend two weeks in Tahiti in three-piece suits), but they have splurged on bus tours that allotted 15 minutes to view the Book of Kells in Ireland and an hour and a half to tour a sweater factory; on a private car whose driver spoke English like an Italian Henry Kissinger with a lip full of Novocain; on a villa in which the staff spoke only Spanish and the guests were reduced to rubbing their tummies at the cook and saying, ``Yummy, yummy!''; and on a glamorous cruise through the fjords of Norway, where Bombeck and spouse ate 17 meals a day and outgrew their clothes, only to find half the crew camped out in the exercise room. Worldly wisdom gained by years of experience with Turkish bathrooms, Montezuma's revenge, and transporting native spears home on American airlines has impressed on Bombeck the basic commonality of all cultures and has inspired her to suggest that instead of stockpiling nuclear weapons we should aim our vacation slides at one another. Classic Bombeck, in which she does away with any notion of an empty-nest syndrome. (Literary Guild Dual Selection for August.) -- Copyright ©1991, Kirkus Associates, LP. All rights reserved.
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Book Description HarperTorch, 1992. Mass Market Paperback. Book Condition: New. book. Bookseller Inventory # 0061099813
Book Description HarperTorch, 1992. Mass Market Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # DADAX0061099813
Book Description HarperTorch, 1992. Mass Market Paperback. Book Condition: New. Bookseller Inventory # P110061099813
Book Description HarperTorch. MASS MARKET PAPERBACK. Book Condition: New. 0061099813 New Condition. Bookseller Inventory # NEW6.1022841