What’s So Funny?: A Cartoonist’s Memoir by David Sipress
From a longtime New Yorker staff cartoonist, an evocative family memoir, a love letter to New York City, and a delightful exploration of the origins of creativity—richly interleaved with the author’s witty, beloved cartoons.
David Sipress, a dreamer and obsessive drawer living with his Upper West Side family in the age of JFK and Sputnik, goes hazy when it comes to the ceaselessly imparted lessons-on-life from his meticulous father and the angsty expectations of his migraine-prone mother. With wry and brilliantly observed prose, Sipress paints his hapless place in the family, from the time he is tricked by his unreliable older sister into rocketing his pet turtle out his twelfth-floor bedroom window to the moment he walks away from a Harvard PhD program in Russian history to begin his life as a professional cartoonist. Sipress’s cartoons appear in the story with spot-on precision, inducing delightful Aha! moments in answer to the perennial question aimed at cartoonists: Where do you get your ideas?
Year first published: 2022