Misha Crews

Stories from the heart. Books that feel like home.

I had so much fun two weeks ago writing about Comfort Reading that I decided to find something else comforting to write about! And here it is: the Office Ladies podcast!

First, I should say that I almost made this blog post about the TV show The Office, itself, and I might write about that show later, but I am so in love with this podcast that I just had to share it with you.

Office Ladies is a re-watch podcast which discusses, in-depth, every episode of the American version of the television show, The Office. It is hosted by Jenna Fischer and Angela Kinsey, who played Pam and Angela on the show, and who are best friends in real life. If that wasn’t enough, the show is full of guest stars and touching, hilarious, intimate anecdotes.

The podcast officially launched on October 16, 2019. Each episode of the podcast discusses an episode of the TV show. At the time of this writing the ladies are up to Season 2, Episode 14 (The Carpet).

The ladies themselves are delightful, down-to-earth and are obviously having a great time. In addition to the discussion of the show, there are some fun digressions about life in Hollywood (and life in general) that consistently crack me up.

All in all, Office Ladies is one of my favorite forms of comfort content. It’s a great pick-me-up.

Office Ladies is available on all the usual platforms (I listen on the Google Podcast app). There is also a commercial-free version available on Stitcher Premium.

Do you listen to podcasts? What are your favorites?

This poem, written by my friend’s 10-year-old daughter, tells us everything we need to know about who we are. We are magic.

If you try to do what has never been done,
You are magic.

If you jump so high you reach the sun,
You are magic.

If you go and do something that could not be,
Or are the best you could ever be,
You are magic.

If you keep on going when the bad guys say no,
And keep on going to all the places you will go,
You are magic.

When you climb to the top of any old tree,
Or brave the wonders of the great big sea,
You are magic.

If you be you and I'll be me,
We are magic…

…and always will be.

Mackenzie Reeves

In these days of social distancing and long grocery lines, it’s important to find comfort and peace wherever we can. Curling up with a good book is wonderful under the best of circumstances: in stressful times like the one we’re living through, it becomes even more important.

Like many readers, I adore Agatha Christie. She had that unique gift of drawing us into a world with a minimum of words. Her writing is clean and smooth and beautifully British. She makes complex knots with memorable characters, and yet her language is always deceptively simple. She is my very favorite writer of all time.

And what could be more comforting than disappearing into Saint Mary Meade, where Jane Marple always knows the truth about every situation? She can serve you a nice cup of tea, perhaps a morsel of seed cake, sweetly explain what happened to Mrs. Price-Ridley’s gill of pickled shrimp and disclose who dumped a body in Colonel Bantry’s library.

Below are pictures of some of my favorite Miss Marple books, with a little bit about each one in the captions.

What fiction stories do you read when you want some comfort?

Who could believe that this sleepy English village would be the home of one of the most brilliant criminal minds of the 20th Century? Image credit: agathachristie.fandom.com.
When I was about fourteen I found this hardcover book in a Waldenbooks store in DC. It was a rainy Sunday. I started reading on the subway ride home and was instantly in love. It was my first exposure to Miss Marple. Since then I have read these books over and over again. They never get old.
I received this paperback as a Secret Santa gift sometime around 1988. I read and re-read the stories so many times that the book eventually fell apart, and I eventually replaced it with a hardcover copy.
Instead of St Mary Mead, this novel is set in the town of Lymstock, and although it’s definitely a Miss Marple Mystery, she takes a minor role in this one. I have gone back The Moving Finger again and again: I love the vividness of the characters and the inscrutability of the mystery (“Poison Pen” letters spark mayhem and murder). It also has a bit of a love story which makes it extra special.