John O'Grady

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For the Irish hurler, see John O'Grady (hurler).

John Patrick O'Grady, pen name Nino Culotta (9 October 1907 – 14 January 1981) was an Australian writer. His works include the comic novel They're a Weird Mob (1957) and the poem The Integrated Adjective, sometimes known as Tumba-bloody-rumba.


O'Grady chose to write under a variety of pseudonyms, most famously as Nino Culotta for his books They're a Weird Mob, Cop This Lot, Gone Fishin ', and Gone Gougin' . Other examples include No Kava For Johnny, which is published under O'Grady's name, but contains a preface from the author claiming that the book had in fact been written by the eponymous character, Johnny.


O'Grady's numerous works were originally published in hardback by Ure Smith with comic illustrations; many have frequently been re-issued by other publishing houses, generally facsimile editions in paperback.

  • They're a Weird Mob (Sydney: Ure Smith, 1957) and its sequels,
    • Cop This Lot (Sydney: Ure Smith, 1960)
    • Gone Fishin' (Sydney: Ure Smith, 1962)
    • Gone Gougin' (Sydney: Ure Smith, 1975)
  • No Kava for Johnny (Sydney: Ure Smith, 1961) illustrated by 'wep'
  • The Things They Do To You (Sydney: Ure Smith, 1963) illustrated by 'wep'
  • Aussie English: An Explanation of the Australian Idiom (Sydney: Ure Smith, 1965)
  • Ladies and Gentlemen (with Douglass Baglin) (Sydney: Ure Smith, 1966)
  • Gone Troppo (Sydney: Ure Smith, 1968)
  • O'Grady Sez (Sydney: Ure Smith, 1969)
  • So Sue Me! (Sydney: Ure Smith, 1970)
  • Are You Irish or Normal? (as by Sean O'Grada) (Sydney: Ure Smith, 1970)
  • Aussie Etiket; or, Doing Things the Aussie Way (Sydney: Ure Smith, 1971)
  • It's Your Shout, Mate!: Aussie pubs and Aussie beers (Sydney: Ure Smith, 1972)
  • Smoky Joe the Fish-eater (Sydney: Ure Smith, 1972)
  • Survival in the Doghouse (Sydney: Ure Smith, 1973)
  • Now Listen, Mate! [re-issue of So sue me!] (Sydney: Ure Smith, 1974)
  • There Was A Kid: An Autobiography, Part One (Sydney: Ure Smith, 1977)
  • Down Under To Up Over (with Molly O'Grady) (Sydney: Lansdowne Press, 1980)

Aussie Etiket was translated into Japanese as Ōsutoraria-ryū Echiketto: Oretachi Dattara Kōsuru Ne (Tōkyō : Kindai Bungeisha, 1993)

A collection of the papers of O'Grady, ranging from 1942–1986, are available in manuscript form at the National Library of Australia, Canberra.[1]


O'Grady's son, John O'Grady, Jnr, was at one point the head of situation comedy at the Australian Broadcasting Corporation[2] and winner of the 1987 Television Drama Award for ABC TV series Mother and Son presented by the Australian Human Rights Commission.[3] O'Grady's brother, Frank, was also an author and published The Golden Valley (1955), Goonoo Goonoo (1956) and Hanging Rock (1957); all published by Cassell. Where O'Grady's novels were light satirical works, Frank O'Grady wrote pioneering sagas set in western New South Wales.[4]

See also[edit]


  1. ^ "Papers of John O'Grady (1907–1981)". Manuscripts (8046). National Library of Australia. 2007-12-06. Retrieved 2007-08-11. 
  2. ^ Tynan, Jacinta (2008-09-13). "Weird how my rello won his fame". Sydney Morning Herald (Fairfax Media). Retrieved 2010-11-05. 
  3. ^ "1987 Television Drama Award". Human Rights Medal and Awards. Australian Human Rights Commission. 1987. Retrieved 2007-08-11. 
  4. ^ "O'Grady, John see 'Culotta, Nino': popular authorship, duplicity and celebrity". Australian Literary Studies (extract). Extract from The Gale Group. 2004-10-01. Retrieved 2010-11-05.