Mrs. Bitterly

Whenever anyone spoke of Mrs. Bitterly, it was more often than not with a look of someone who had just bitten into an apple to find half a worm. To say she was disliked would be considered a kindness she didn’t deserve. After all, Mr. Diggs’ dog was better like than her and no one could stand that damn dog and its yowling at all hours of the night.

As for herself, Mrs. Bitterly considered herself the town gossip, a much needed service in a place where Mrs. James was known to self medicate herself into a slobber pile on the hallway floor or where Rev. Jack was known to take confession with Mrs. Bigsby in her little ‘hideaway’ above her store when they thought no one was watching. If not for her who knows what shenanigans might stay hidden away behind the thin veneer of respectability the citizens of this Mid-West Sodom might get up to?

So it was some surprise when old Lady Witherspoon sat down across from her old friend at their favorite table in Maybels’ Diner and asked, “What’s on the menu for today?” Expecting some juicy piece of news, only to be told,

“Why I have no idea what your referring to.” She said with a straight face and blank stare.

Taken aback, Lady Witherspoon let out a hissing breath. “What are you playing at Marry Beth? You always have the freshest news and I always hear it first. You telling me, for the first time in almost forty years, you don’t have something to share?” 

Mrs. Marry Beth Bitterly, once Marry Beth Summermore, once Marry Beth Lackly, and before all of them Marry Beth Johnson of Caramel Street, just two houses from the Honorable Judge Billy Black, better known as the “Hangin’ Judge” before he was found with Minister Willsons’ wife in more than his chambers and less than his robe. Looked her oldest, closest, and dearest friend in the eye and said, “Gossip is the devil’s pulpit and I will have nothing to do with such wickedness.”

Lady Witherspoon was, for the first time in her memory, rendered speechless. To hear such words come from that mouth was more than she could comprehend. It just didn’t seem possible. She was still struggling to find a proper response when a very handsome young man came to their table and with a smile laid a hand on Marry Beth’s shoulder.

“A very fine speech if I do say so myself,” the gentleman’s voice was smooth as warm honey and so sweet it made her teeth ache. Just looking at him was enough to take ones breath away. He was so beautiful it was obscene. What he said next though made the hair stand up on her arms and a shiver ran down her spine.


“You do know, it’s too little and far too late.”

2013 in review

The stats helper monkeys prepared a 2013 annual report for this blog.

Here’s an excerpt:

The concert hall at the Sydney Opera House holds 2,700 people. This blog was viewed about 24,000 times in 2013. If it were a concert at Sydney Opera House, it would take about 9 sold-out performances for that many people to see it.

Click here to see the complete report.