I’d like to propose a new word…


Def.: The Thanksgiving shopping list.

Can be used with an ellipsis, an in apocalist…

Which implies: The Thanksgiving shopping list plus everything else we need.

Happy Thanksgiving, everyone.

CNAC Forever!

Cheers, Greg

(Nod to my friend Forrest Murphy for the ellipsis.)

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Wartime spy finally accepts she is a French Heroine

Fantastic courage.

A close family friend – her godmother’s father – had been shot by the Germans and her godmother had committed suicide after being taken prisoner by the Nazis.

“I did it for revenge,” said Mrs. Doyle.

Click the pic for The Telegraph’s full story.

Wartine spy copy

Love those para wings pinned to her fleece jacket over her line of medals.

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50 Notable works of nonfiction, posted by the Washington Post

Here’s a list of 50 notable nonfiction books, posted by The Washington Post.

50 works of nonfiction copy

Nice to Tom Shroder’s Acid Test included, along with a few words from my review.

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The Naked Mountaineer by Stephen Sieberson, reviewed by Gregory Crouch

Naked Mountaineer copyHere’s my review of The Naked Mountaineer: Misadventures of an Alpine Traveler by Stephen Sieberson, which appeared as “Bluffs in the Buff” in The Wall Street Journal on November 15 & 16, 2014.

“The jacket copy promises irreverent adventures and peculiar characters presented in a manner far removed from that of “the typical mountaineering book.” And so we crack its covers hoping for alpine rambles in the vein of Eric Newby’s lighthearted bumble “A Short Walk in the Hindu Kush,” of Tom Patey ’s gently deprecating “One Man’s Mountains,” or of W.E. Bowman ’s side-splitting satire “The Ascent of Rum Doodle… [MORE]”

(I’ve linked to a Google search, because linking directly to the review runs into the WSJ paywall; from the search, if you click the top link, it should take you to the review’s full text.)

Bluffs in the Buff copy




Here are links to 18 other book reviews I’ve done for The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, NPR, and more.



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No Man’s Land by Elizabeth Samet, reviewed by Gregory Crouch

No Mans Land copyHere’s my review of No Man’s Land: Preparing for War and Peace in Post-9/11 America by West Point English Professor Elizabeth Samet.

(For The Washington Post, November 7, 2014)

“Samet’s musings are fascinating, and for serving officers, they should be required reading. As goes the famous quote widely but incorrectly attributed to Thucydides but actually drawn from the writings of 19th Century Irish Lt Gen. Sir William Francis Butler, “The Nation that [draws a broad line] between the fighting man and the thinking man is liable to find its fighting done by fools and its thinking done by cowards.”

Elizabeth Samet is certainly doing her bit to ensure neither calamity afflicts the United States.” [MORE…]

Here is a list of 17 other books I’ve reviewed for The Washington Post, The Wall Street Journal, NPR, and more.

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Adorable cat with dubious literary taste

Cat, EP and CW from June C

Adorable photo of Ginger the Cat, courtesy of June Creson. June recently retired from Boeing, where, as the person who coordinated the string of Ed Wells Book Club events I’ve been doing, she was probably responsible for creating more China’s Wings readers than any other single individual. Thanks, June!

(With a nod to Gregory Richards, a guy I served with in the Army’s 7th Infantry Division in the early ’90s who is now at Boeing. Gregory put me in touch with June shortly after the publication of China’s Wings.)

Nice to see Enduring Patagonia getting some cat love, too.

Posted in China's Wings, Enduring Patagonia | 2 Comments

Best Halloween costume ever, by my 13-year old son, Ryan

When my 13-year old son and I watched the  trailer for the movie Fury some weeks ago, he exclaimed, “It would be so awesome to go to Halloween dressed as a tank!”

I said, “You know, you could probably make that happen…”

He said, “Really?”

Here is the result of his efforts, an M4 Sherman Tank:

Halloween TankPretty fabulous, no? It was the hands down winner in his school costume contest. From what I could see, he had a swarm of kids following him around all day, because it was more than just a costume that he could wear, it was also a costume he could drive

Here’s a video of it rolling out from the assembly area:

(Forgive me, I was enjoying it almost as much as he was…)

And here he is rolling past a local softball field. Quite literally, it stopped the game:

And then a last short one of him catching the attention of a guy coming out of a corner store:

Here are a few pictures of the rig under construction:

Posted in Oddities & Off topics | 9 Comments

Enduring Patagonia quoted in Alpinist No. 48

Psyched to see Enduring Patagonia quoted in the new issue of Alpinist, No. 48

EP in Alpinist copy



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The Calling by Barry Blanchard, reviewed by Gregory Crouch

The Calling copy

Here’s my review of The Calling by Barry Blanchard, which appeared as “Wintry Climbs” in the October 11 & 12 issue of The Wall Street Journal.

(I’ve linked you through a Google search in the hopes that it’ll get us around the WSJ’s paywall.)

Barry’s one of the most impressive climbers of modern times. On Twitter, he’s: @Barry_Blanchard; his website is www.barryblanchard.ca; and here he is as one of Patagonia’s climbing ambassadors

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My Acid Test review quoted in Newsweek

Got a bit of a buzz the other day when I saw my Acid Test review for The Washington Post quoted in Douglas Main’s article “Ecstasy and Acid in your medicine cabinet? Doctors Explore Psychedelics” which published in Newsweek on 10/14/2014.

Newsweek copy

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