by Chrysa Smith

You’ve seen them.
If you’ve hit middle age, you’ve met them.
Maybe you even have one or two in your family.
They’re the Queens of Drama—those ladies who are not happy, not fulfilled unless they are (like Strega Nona–the character from the children’s book by the same name*)constantly stirring the cauldron.

Only Strega Nona was innocent enough. Her pot was only full of water and pasta.
But the Queens of Drama have a much more dangerous brew bubbling up on their cooktops—-You can easily spot them by their favorite recipe:

Take a few petty issues. Froth that with a dose of control , guilt and meddling. Then triangulate carefully (psych terms for calling third parties into the mix-)–just for some extra salacious flavor. Sprinkle this concoction with a bit of passive-aggressiveness (quietly holding a nit-picky grudge instead of dealing directly with a person/problem) and top the mixture off with a childlike dose of silent treatment interspersed with demeaning insults. Voila! You’ve created the perfect concoction to tear friendships, marriages and other relationships apart.

Luckily, there’s an easy antidote for this toxic dish: When the cook begins to stir, excuse yourself and head to another kitchen. Maybe Strega Nona’s; known to work magic with pasta.

*Italian translation: Strega Nona = grandmother witch