Dear Faithful Readers:

I’m giving Crone and Bear It a break.  That’s not to say I’ll never post here again.  I’ve learned to never say never.

In the meantime, I’ve embarked on a new blogging journey.  Please come see my new endeavor She’s A Pretty Good Christian.

You’ll find me at  Never fear, my humor has not left me.

Oh yeah, EmmaLou, Golden Destroyer will be a part of the new blog, no doubt.  See ya over there.


Linda and


Out of the Mouths of…Husbands

Reacting to my aching back and the fact I announced I was about to carry some loads of laundry to the basement, the conversation went like this:
Me:  I’m gonna take down some laundry in a little while.

Devoted Spouse:  No, you’re not.

Me:  Oh, yeah, I am.

Devoted Spouse:  No! You can’t carry down; you can’t carry up…but…you can karaoke.

Seriously, this is my life…sigh…

One From Column A and Two From Column B

ImageI recently read a book; a psychological thriller I later learned.  While it was well written, I didn’t like it.  I didn’t like it at all.  Why?  Because it was about the horrible mind games people can play with each other.  I like psychological thrillers, mind you.  I really enjoyed all the Girl With Dragon Tattoo, etc.; and they were pretty rough books.

But this particular book made me so sad because it dealt with a married couple who simply could do nothing but hurt each other in new and vicious ways.

You see…I love the stuffin’ outta Devoted Spouse.  Here’s just one reason:  He labels our Chinese take-out boxes with our initials so when I want to finish what I ordered, I don’t have to waste time opening all the boxes.

So, in a way, reading the terrible book was good for me because it reminded me how loved I am!  sigh…

The Attack of the 80 Foot Gallbladder

pic from National Archives

I was enjoying a lovely breakfast of pancakes and bacon at my local Bob Evans when I realized I wasn’t really hungry.  Leaving half my food on the plate, I left and went about my day.  Errands, errands, ooh ice cream, errands, come home & read a book.  Pretty normal day for me (minus the ice cream).

We had a guest in the house; a guest who was like family, but a guest nonetheless.  I started feeling rather wonky around suppertime.  Wonky as in “If I inhale many more food fumes I will hurl.”  I made dinner for Devoted Spouse and our guest and retired to the bedroom to rest.

I thought a nice tv show might get my mind off my queasy tummy.  Turning on the tv, I landed on the Food Channel and promptly ran to the bathroom to hurl.  By that time I was pretty sure something was amiss.  The guest and Devoted Spouse were still enjoying their dinner, grrr.

A little voice told me, change your clothes…put on clean underwear…brush your teeth and do something with your hair.  I think it’s a girl thing.  A stupid girl thing because by that time I was all sweaty and there was no chance of doing anything with my hair.  sigh

At 10:00 that night, I walked into the kitchen all hunched over and looking a lovely shade of grey (no…not Fifty Shades…) to the horror of our guest and managed to scare the puddin’ outta Devoted Spouse.  I announced, “Hospital, now!”  The guest was concerned, Devoted Spouse was very concerned (and looking for car keys) and I was searching for a knife large enough to cut out Freddie Kruger (who I was sure was living in my belly).  It was not pretty.

Almost six days later I had been in two different hospitals, been sedated for a gnarly test involving tubes down one’s throat into the gallbladder (ack ack) and had a virtual munchkin stranger suck out one of my major organs leaving me with four rather painful holes and something disgusting hanging out of me called a drain.  (oh ack squared) (you may hurl now).

So that’s what I did on MY summer vacation kids. Even if you desperately wish to lose weight (I’m down 20 lbs now) I suggest you not try this.  It’s right up there with abscessed teeth…or maybe being run over by a truck.  Yes, the bills are arriving daily.  We’re over $22,000 at present.  Didja miss me?  sigh…

It’s Nostalgia Time…Walk With Me…


courtesy of

I’ve been strolling down memory lane lately.  When last we met, I regaled you w/my Camp Fire Girls story.  Today we’re not going to guffaw or fall out of our comfy chair while telling you the latest antics of EmmaLou, Golden Destroyer.  No, today we’re gonna stroll down memory lane again.  Indulge me. This is what it’s like to age…I can’t remember what I wore yesterday, but what I’m about to share with you made me time-travel back many years with crystal clarity. I can still smell the chalk dust from the blackboard behind me in the classroom as I stood in front of the class… Sigh…

You see, while cleaning out documents in a very full laptop, I came across something I haven’t thought about in a very long time.  It’s a delightful poem by Ogden Nash and I remember quite well memorizing it for a recitation in elementary school some time back in the Neolithic Age.  I couldn’t memorize this many lines now if my life depended on it – but back then I nailed it.  I thought I had a promising future in acting.  I’m just happy I kept the poem.  It is every bit as delightful to me today as it was back then….


By Ogden Nash

Copyright Linell Nash Smith and Isabel Nash Eberstadt

Belinda lived in a little white house,
With a little black kitten and a little gray mouse,
And a little yellow dog and a little red wagon,
And a realio, trulio, little pet dragon.

Now the name of the little black kitten was Ink,
And the little gray mouse, she called her Blink,
And the little yellow dog was sharp as Mustard,
But the dragon was a coward, and she called him Custard.

Custard the dragon had big sharp teeth,
And spikes on top of him and scales underneath,
Mouth like a fireplace, chimney for a nose,
And realio, trulio, daggers on his toes.

Belinda was as brave as a barrel full of bears,
And Ink and Blink chased lions down the stairs,
Mustard was as brave as a tiger in a rage,
But Custard cried for a nice safe cage.

Belinda tickled him, she tickled him unmerciful,
Ink, Blink and Mustard, they rudely called him Percival,
They all sat laughing in the little red wagon
At the realio, trulio, cowardly dragon.

Belinda giggled till she shook the house,
And Blink said Week!, which is giggling for a mouse,
Ink and Mustard rudely asked his age,
When Custard cried for a nice safe cage.

Suddenly, suddenly they heard a nasty sound,
And Mustard growled, and they all looked around.
Meowch! cried Ink, and Ooh! cried Belinda,
For there was a pirate, climbing in the winda.

Pistol in his left hand, pistol in his right,
And he held in his teeth a cutlass bright,
His beard was black, one leg was wood;
It was clear that the pirate meant no good.

Belinda paled, and she cried, Help! Help!
But Mustard fled with a terrified yelp,
Ink trickled down to the bottom of the household,
And little mouse Blink strategically mouseholed.

But up jumped Custard, snorting like an engine,
Clashed his tail like irons in a dungeon,
With a clatter and a clank and a jangling squirm
He went at the pirate like a robin at a worm.

The pirate gaped at Belinda’s dragon,
And gulped some grog from his pocket flagon,
He fired two bullets but they didn’t hit,
And Custard gobbled him, every bit.

Belinda embraced him, Mustard licked him,
No one mourned for his pirate victim
Ink and Blink in glee did gyrate
Around the dragon that ate the pyrate.

Belinda still lives in her little white house,
With her little black kitten and her little gray mouse,
And her little yellow dog and her little red wagon,
And her realio, trulio, little pet dragon.

Belinda is as brave as a barrel full of bears,
And Ink and Blink chase lions down the stairs,
Mustard is as brave as a tiger in a rage,
But Custard keeps crying for a nice safe cage.


I Can’t Make This Stuff Up – Really…Part 2


Last time we met, I regaled you with the antics of Devoted Spouse.  Turnabout is fair play so today I shall tell on myself.  Let the fun begin.

I have recently become involved in a ministry effort at my church.  We are still forming a team and Sunday the newest members of the team met at a local restaurant for a get-together and overview of our team efforts to date.   There were 6 of us around the table, plus our Pastor; a  nice cozy gathering of spiritually-gifted ladies.  Warriors for God.  Woot!

We had some introductory time to chat and our Pastor gave us several questions to answer as an “ice-breaker.”  I don’t know about you but just  mention the term “ice-breaker” to me and I will do my best to scramble across the backs of the people next to me as I race to the nearest exit leaving all my possessions behind.  Even though I’m a raging extrovert, I don’t do well with “ice-breakers.”

We partnered, asked each other the questions, jotted down the answers, then went around the room sharing one of those answers of our partner.   Keep in mind, please, there are some deeply theologically thoughtful ladies at the table  (including my Pastor to whom I’m right this moment sending a subliminal message….. I’m truly not a goofball…I’m truly not a goofball… I do take this seriously…I do take this seriously) and some of the answers given were very insightful and thought-provoking.

One question was:  If you were a Super Hero, which Super Hero would you be and why?  Another was:  If you could ask Jesus any question face-to-face when you get to heaven what would you ask? And the third was: What ministries have you been involved in in the past and how were they a good fit for you?  As I was eavesdropping, I was catching some very interesting answers going around the table (by this time I had already given my answers to my partner) and I’m thinking to myself….. dear partner puhleeeze don’t choose question number 2 to tell the group. 

Didja ever do something you instantly regretted?  Didja ever say something you wanted to snatch out of the air immediately…I mean immediately???  Yeah, uh-huh…me, too.

I’m overhearing ladies talking about asking Jesus some powerful questions….questions involving their families’ welfare….questions about their pets (HEY – I wanna know that EmmaLou will be there with me, too!) and some theological puzzlers like what will be the salvation for our friends of other faiths?  These are all valid, spiritual, genuine, thoughtful, well-done answers.

My partner announces to the group…For Question Number Two on what would you ask Jesus face-to-face, Linda answered: 

 “Jesus, what’s the deal with brussel sprouts anyway…what were you thinkin?”

There was a polite smattering of laughter and all I wanted to do was slink away…get home, dye my hair another color, get on the Internet and find Guido who can get me a new identity andhelp me get outta Dodge.

I need to work on that part of my brain responsible for thoughtful replies…sigh…

Happy Days? Nah, Not So Much…



It’s that time of year again…I’m being pelted with emails announcing my high school reunion.  So many Spartans (yes, we chose some strange warriors with kitchen brushes on their helmets as our forever-logo) have been “located” and now is the time to sign up for the Re-aquaintance Cocktail Party to be followed by The Big Dinner the next night. 

No, no, no and mmmmm I don’t think so.  I have never attended a reunion and I’m not about to start now.  I have kept in touch with…lemme count now…oh yes, two people from high school; one of which I really don’t even care about for personal reasons I can’t discuss on this blog.  The other was my very best friend, Janie, and I FaceBook with her.  That’s it.  No one else.  Why would I want to go back and revisit four of the worst years of my life?  Teen angst surfaces even as I write this post.  Eww…gym class with those horried blue uniforms and the slightly off kilter gym teacher (’nuff said).  Quick showers and Right Guard spray.  It makes my brain ache.

High school….boys…I dated a guy named Ronnie.  I just had the best time with him and what did he do?  He went all gay on me.  Can you imagine how that made me feel?  Oh I got over it.  And we remained friends for many years up until he became ill and died from AIDS.  Then there was a guy, Greg, who actually gave me a ring and asked me to “go steady” with him.  What an antiquated term…”going steady.”  We lasted 3 days and I returned the ring.  I was horrible at dating and relationships. I actually dated a boy named Maynard.  Maynard!!!  He was a nice guy, too.  But the name killed me.   High school….it’s why therapists get rich.

I almost flunked out of Home Economics.  How does anyone do that you ask?  I couldn’t sew a zipper — I couldn’t do it.  Finally, on my 12th or 13th try, the stepmonster did it for me and we just put the entire ugly experience behind us.  I truly wanted to go to Shop and learn how to do neat things to a car engine but at that time girls had to cook and sew and boys got the fun stuff.  I complained loudly and constantly ended up in either the Principal or Vice Principal’s office for making such a fuss.  The big mouth I have today?  Yeah, it was in evidence back then, too.

My Biology teacher was the strangest woman I have ever met.  She used to stand up in front of the class and sing the theme to the Mickey Mouse Club to us and she had this jar on her desk with heaven knows what in it.  The day came for me to dissect the frog and I flat-out refused.  Nope – not gonna do it.  Back to the Vice Principal’s office and his only remark to me was…”Oh God, not you again?”  Got through that class with a C-.  Then there was Algebra where I was given a D just so the teacher didn’t have to see me the following year.

I loathed high school.  I was not a cheerleader. I hated studying.  I wasn’t really a “joiner.”  I did not hang out with the cool kids. I did have boys on my brain, though.  I had a crush on a guy named Luc who used to sit behind me in History class .  And then this surfer guy from California moved into town – his name was (I kid you not) Woody and he also showed up in my History class.  I barely passed History that year.  I wasn’t the studious type — I think you see the trend here. 

Actually, I had a few  friends I hung out with  but I was somewhat of a daredevil and a clown and that simply led to my always being in trouble for one thing or another.  As I recall, I was not a member of any of the little cliques – I ended up in Glee Club and the Spanish Club for gawd’s sake — and the Spanish teacher had a thing for me.  Yes I was able to read what he wrote in my yearbook even if it WAS in Espanol — he wanted to go to la playa (the beach) with me.  Talk about your nightmares…

I was forced by the father and the stepmonster to take typing and shorthand.  Oh puhleeze – what a miserable thing to do to a young girl.  I sat in that class while this bug-eyed little woman yelled at me because I kept the cap on my “real” fountain pen.  She actually stabbed me in the arm one day with her own pen.  Scarred me for life in more ways than one.  I could take dictation at 120 words a minute, though, so I guess she was an adequate teacher.  Nasty human being.  

There was only one class in which I excelled — can you guess?  Yup – English.  All four years English was my favorite, especially English Lit.  One English teacher opened the class with that old standby “I Am.”  “Now write.”  I had so much fun with that one; creative writing was my only love.   That’s my one good memory of high school.  Pitiful.

And you think I want to go see these people after all these years?  Not on your life.  Not even after I have lost 40 pounds and look absolutely stunning would I pay the exorbitant price to walk into those rooms and face people I don’t even remember and who will not remember me.  I actually pulled out the yearbooks the other day and went through them.  Out of an entire class I recognized maybe 20??

I refuse to put Devoted Spouse through the tedium as a group of 50-somethings sit around and reminisce about who was Prom Queen and Prom King.  Crap on a crutch, I went to my Junior year prom with a loser who reeked of cigarettes and he ditched ME there!   I wasn’t asked to Senior Prom.  (Here’s where my 12 faithful readers all say…awww poor baby…)  snort.

I sound like a broken Amy Winehouse song…Wanna Make Me Go To Reunion and I say no, no, no.

Besides…someone might tell Devoted Spouse some of the crap I used to pull and he has such a high opinion of me.  I would hate to topple off my pedestal in front of him with my tiara hanging around my knees somewhere.  I’ll just remember that high school was simply a part of life I had to go through and leave it at that.

I truly wish my fellow West Springfield High Schoolers a fabulous time as they stroll down memory lane  — I’ll stay here and suck a Diet Pepsi through my nose for kicks…sigh…