The Fool-Killer



“I sipped my absinthe drip and sawed wormwood.”

I am an author of fiction and I eventually made friends with the artist who clumsily misrepresented by illustration my printed fiction when published. I ever delighted in calling this artist friend a ‘fool’ to his face — and, enhancing my fiction with alcoholic drinks, as I often did, I included in this story reference to an absinthe drip when we two friends were meeting for a meal.
I shall never forget, though, this story’s character of the Fool-Killer who, with various pseudonyms, haunts us all. Here, though, the surprise I felt at the revealed identity of the Fool-Killer in this particular scenario actually transcended fiction itself! And that was nothing to do with the absinthe drip, I assure you. [Unsure, in O Henry’s day, whether ‘drip’ and ‘fool’ were synonymous!]

My continuing reviews of O. Henry:

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