Zorro (Guy Williams) and Bernardo (Gene Sheldo...
Zorro (Guy Williams) and Bernardo (Gene Sheldon) in the 1950s Zorro television series (Photo credit: Wikipedia)


I actually love that word.

I suspect I’m not suppose to like it, much less use it.  It’s probably not socially correct.  Especially for a pastor.  She should know better.

But it’s such a great word!  It’s a Z-word for one thing.  All kinds of great names, words, experiences, have Z’s in them:

  1. Zamboni
  2. Zeppelin
  3. Z28 Camaro
  4. Fonzie
  5. Zorro!
  6. zzzzzzzzzzzz

The other thing is that it’s a catch-all word to describe stuff for which we lack words.  NEW experiences.  NEW behaviors.  When we see or do something that is NEW and perhaps alarming or troubling, we don’t have to wait to invent a word to define it.  Until that word  is found or invented we just say, “That’s Crazy!”

I was feeling crazy recently.  I’ll spare you the (now I realize) boring details of what (at the time) seemed to be my personal expression of Crazy;  instead, I want to tell you I found the best antidote to this feeling:

Reading a book about someone who really IS CRAZY! 

I just finished a thriller entitled, Gone Girl by Gillian Flynn.  My forever friend Miss Judy recommended it to me as a way of distracting me from my…well…  she insisted it would be good medicine.

I put it on my list entitled:  People Who Love You Think You Should…

I went to the bookstore on Sunday.  Had to ask the as-thin-as-he-was-earnest young man to help me find Gone Girl. 

After some shelf-perusing, he produced it with a flourish:  a heavy, HARDCOVER book with a black jacket and neon pink print. 

I cried, “Not HARDCOVER!” You mean it’s not out in paperback yet?

He looked slightly confused.  Not old enough yet to know that with women, a guy could go from hero to goat just that quickly.

“But you get 30% off!” he offered, pointing to the big yellow sticker on the cover. 

30% off WHAT, I accused (a hardcover book…how decadent…what am I thinking?)

He looked at the book, tilted his head and replied:  “I don’t know but it’ll come in under $ 20.  How long you think it would take you to read this book?” he asked.

I took the temptation out of his hand.  Gently rubbed my hand over the glossy cover.  Licked my lips.  Flipped to the back: 413 pages.  Big Pages.

“10 hours?” I asked, sheepishly.

“So, $ 2.00/hour.  Is the pleasure of reading a great book worth $ 2.00/hour to you?”

He had won.  He knew it.  I knew it. 

I gave him my best you-won-that-round smile as he led me to the register.

He broke into a broad boyish grin AFTER he rang it up:  ” That’ll be $ 18.68, Miss…”

“Miss.”  Nice. 

Then he secured future sales to me by sealing the deal with vulnerability.  “Shew!  I have to tell you I was practically praying this baby was gonna come in under $20.00!”  He smacked the book hard with his whole palm.

I was impressed.  Guess I sort of misjudged that one.

Gone Girl is a great read.  It’s a thriller with breakneck twists.  The characters in it all have their own brand of crazy and a couple, have nothing BUT!

It helped me remember that great books have ALWAYS been my best antidote to the dark side.

It helped me see that my form of crazy is laughable when you lay it out next to real psychopaths!

It reminded me what a lovely art form sales can be when it is done well, and when you are being sold something you sort of DO need.

And it introduced me to my new favorite bookseller.  If you get your copy at the Book Loft, tell Zach I sent you.


  1. It never fails, your writings always remind me of something in my life. This one reminds me of the words from a song that I like called “Crazy” by Seal. It goes, “No, we’re never going to survive, unless, we get a little craaazzy!” The message for me is this: occasionally we need to step
    outside our comfort zone.


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